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My Ketogenic Mediterranean Diet: Day 15 and Week 2 Recap

Just a few supplements

Just a few supplements

Weight: 162 lb (73.6 kg)

Waist circumference: 35 inches (89 cm)

Transgressions: none

Exercise: none

Comments

Down 3 lb (1.36 kg) for the second week of the diet, for a total of 8 (3.64 kg) since the start two weeks ago.  Waist size down 1.5 inches in two weeks.  I still doubt the majority of  that loss weight is fat.  More likely to be water, glycogen, and intestinal contents.  But some of it’s fat.  Rate of weight loss likely to slow soon, which is fine with me.

My daily caloric intake for the last week has averaged 1,850 calories.  Total daily digestible carbohydrate is about 25 g.

Nutrient analysis at NutritionData suggests that my food consumption is deficient in vitamins D, E, thiamine, B6, folate, pantothenic acid.  Less commonly are suggested deficiencies in vitamins A, C, K, niacin, and B12.  It also suggests inadequate intake of minerals: calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, sodium (!), copper, manganese, and occasionally zinc.

In any case, I’ve been taking a Centrum multivitamin and multimineral supplement and extra vitamin D (400 IU) daily.  A single  Centrum tablet has the following “percent daily values” for vitamins and minerals: 100% for C, D, E, thiamine,B6, folate, niacin, pantothenic acid, B12, and iron.  It also has the following percent daily values: vitamin A 70%, vitamin K 31%, calcium 20%, magnesium 13%, potassium 2%, copper 25%, zinc 73%, and manganese 115%.  [Note that the manufacturer could change the composition at any time.]

Summary of Vitamin and Mineral Content

This very low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet may be deficient in multiple vitamins and minerals, unless supplemented.  A single Centrum ensures good levels, for most adults, except for possibly calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, copper, zinc, and vitamin K. 

Supplementing with elemental calcium (e.g., calcium carbonate) 500-1,000 mg daily might be a good idea.  Magnesium and potassium supplements might be a good idea.  Adding some salt (NaCl) to food should supply enough sodium.  [The standard American diet has far more salt than necessary.]     

 I’m just not convinced yet that this diet could actually be deficient in potassium.

Clinically significant deficiencies of copper and magnesium based on diet are probably rare.  I’ll have to do more research.  Nearly all the low blood levels of magnesium I see are in heavy alcohol drinkers or people using diuretics.

If you try a very low-carb ketogenic diet, you might ask your physician to draw blood levels of magesium and potassium two weeks after you start.

After two weeks on the Ketogenic Mediterranean Diet I feel as fine as usual.  I don’t see or feel any signs of vitamin or mineral deficiency.  But an experiment of one isn’t worth much.

Easy bruising is a relatively common occurrence in people on very low-carb ketogenic diets.  I wonder if it’s related to vitamin K deficiency.  Such bruising is seen also in children on the seizure-control ketogenic diet (not for weight loss); the diet seems to unmask a preexisting genetic predisposition to bleeding.

Vitamin K intake is a serious concern for people taking certain blood thinners (anticoagulants): coumadin, warfarin, coumarin.  Too much vitamin K counteracts the blood thinner; too little enhances the blood thinning.  Both situations are dangerous.  [I’m not talking about aspirin and Plavix.]  

I’m doing my nutritional analysis at NutritionData.  You can analyze your own diet via My Tracking.  They have a footnote accompanying the nutrient analysis for all of my vitamins and minerals: “missing or incomplete value.”  I assume that means the reported micronutrient amounts could be higher than reported. 

Potential Supplement Recommendation for the Ketogenic Mediterranean Diet

[This is a work in progress.  Stay tuned.]

Taking two Centrums daily could neatly solve the potential deficits of vitamins A and K, and minerals magnesium, copper, and zinc.  On the other hand, it could be overkill.  Add calcium as above, and maybe extra vitamin D 400 IU.  [There’s good evidence that the current U.S. Daily Value for vitamin D is too low.]  To summarize this daily supplementation regimen:

  • Two Centrums 
  • Additional calcium (elemental) 500-1,000 mg
  • Additional vitamin D 400 IU   

-Steve

Disclaimer:  Information herein is meant to complement, not replace, any advice or information from your personal health professional.  All matters regarding your health require supervision by a personal physician or other appropriate health professional familiar with your current health status.  Always consult your personal physician before making any dietary changes, such as vitamin and mineral supplementation.

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