Short-Term Ketogenic Diet Improves Abdominal Obesity in Overweight/Obese Chinese Young Females

Zhaowei Kong, Shengyan Sun*, Qingde Shi, Haifeng Zhang, Tomas K. Tong, Jinlei Nie

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of a short-term ketogenic diet (KD) on body composition and cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) in overweight/obese Chinese females. Twenty young females [age: 21.0 ± 3.7 years, weight: 65.5 ± 7.7 kg, body mass index (BMI): 24.9 ± 2.7 kg⋅m–2] consumed 4 weeks of a normal diet (ND) as a baseline and then switched to a low-carbohydrate, high-fat, and adequate protein KD for another 4 weeks. With the same daily caloric intake, the proportions of energy intake derived from carbohydrates, proteins, and fats were changed from 44.0 ± 7.6%, 15.4 ± 3.3%, 39.6 ± 5.8% in ND to 9.2 ± 4.8%, 21.9 ± 3.4%, and 69.0 ± 5.4% in KD. The results showed that, without impairing the CRF level, the 4-week KD intervention significantly reduced body weight (−2.9 kg), BMI (−1.1 kg⋅m–2), waist circumference (−4.0 cm), hip circumference (−2.5 cm), and body fat percentage (−2.0%). Moreover, fasting leptin level was lowered significantly, and serum levels of inflammatory markers (i.e., TNF-α and MCP-1) were unchanged following KD. These findings suggest that KD can be used as a rapid and effective approach to lose weight and reduce abdominal adiposity in overweight/obese Chinese females without exacerbating their CRF.

Original languageEnglish
Article number856
JournalFrontiers in Physiology
Publication statusPublished - 28 Jul 2020

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)

User-Defined Keywords

  • cardiorespiratory fitness
  • leptin
  • low-carbohydrate
  • subcutaneous fat
  • weight loss


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