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Popular Low Carbohydrate Diets

Popular Low Carbohydrate Diets

This month, we took an in-depth look at some popular low carbohydrate diets, e.g. Paleolithic diet (paleo diet) and Ketogenic diet (Keto diet).  Here is at-a-glance comparison of the three more popular ones.

CharacteristicPaleolithic DietKetogenic DietAtkins Diet
Ideology More about food choices.More about manipulating macronutrients.A combination of food choices and manipulating macronutrients.
Low-carbohydrate, comparatively high protein and moderate fat diet.Low-carbohydrate, moderate protein and high fat diet.Starts with low-carbohydrate diet, high protein and moderate fat and gradually increases the amount of carbohydrate.
Source of
Staple food sources of carbohydrates are avoided. Animal based protein sources and mono and polyunsaturated fats.Carbohydrate usually restricted. Animal based protein sources and any source of fats.Complex carbohydrate preferred Plant based protein sources and mix of healthy saturated and unsaturated fats.
ComplianceCompliance may be challenging owing to the certain food restrictions as cereals, and milk or milk products.Compliance may be challenging owing to taste.Comparatively easy to be compliant with as it imparts no major restrictions on any particular wholesome food group.
Possible Beneficial
Health Effects
It recommends whole, nutrient-dense and low glycemic index foods, which lowers blood sugar and cholesterol and reduces visceral fat. Different variants of the Paleolithic diet have various health effects as discussed. It can be planned comparatively higher in fiber and protein. Provides more efficient fuel source that does not require insulin. Ketones contain antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that fight inflammation and disease. Ketones are more energy efficient than glucose, helps preserve muscle mass and protect brain against neuro- degeneration. The high-fat, high protein foods provide more satiety. It is evidenced to be beneficial in various endocrine and non-endocrine disorders as well. Prevents or improve serious health conditions, such as metabolic syndrome, diabetes, high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease.


Gupta, Lovely, Khandelwal, Deepak, et al. Paleolithic Diet in Diabesity and Endocrinopathies – A Vegan’s Perspective, Eur Endocrinol. 2019 Aug; 15(2): 77–82.