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Obesity Research Spotlight — Do Exogenous Ketones Decrease Appetite?

from John W. Apolzan, PhD

From Feb. 14: Ketogenic diets have been thought to decrease appetite sensations. Also, intracerebral infusions of ketone bodies decrease food intake in rodents. However, until recently, there was no way to examine responses to ketones without concurrent dietary intervention. In this month’s issue of Obesity, Brianna J. Stubbs and colleagues, performed a single-blinded randomized crossover study examining the acute effects of an isocaloric ketone ester beverage vs. a dextrose beverage. Blood samples and visual analogue scale (VAS) were examined over 4 hours.

Following the consumption of the ketone ester beverage, ketone bodies were elevated in the blood. However, glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) and peptide tyrosine tyrosine (PYY) did not demonstrate a differential response between the ketone ester and dextrose beverages. Total ghrelin area under the curve was decreased in the ketone ester vs. dextrose treatments. In the 4 hours following beverage consumption, hunger and desire to eat were lower after the ketone vs. dextrose beverage. This short-term study suggests that ketones, independent of diet, may alter appetitive responses and ghrelin. Long-term studies on ketones, independent of diet, are warranted.

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