New Evidence Showing Low Fat And High Carb Diets Increase Dementia Risk
Collaborations,  Press Release

New Evidence Showing Low Fat And High Carb Diets Increase Dementia Risk

New Evidence Showing Low Fat And High Carb Diets Increase Dementia Risk. Hello everyone, I hope you are well. In today’s post, I will share a press release of an upcoming webinar by the Food of the Brain organisation presenting new evidence that low-fat and high-carb diets increase dementia risk. Professor Stephen Cunnane is presenting an online webinar on “Ketones – a key brain fuel during ageing” for the charity on June 6th at 6 pm BST. This webinar will explain how the brain uses ketones for fuel, how to implement a keto diet and the state of the science for keto diets. The webinar will also cover supplements for reducing cognitive decline and their potential as a treatment option to help prevent or arrest dementia and other neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s and epilepsy.

New Evidence Showing Low Fat And High Carb Diets Increase Dementia Risk

Professor Stephen Cunnane, who heads the Brain Research Team at Sherbrooke University in Quebec, Canada, is an expert in the new science of ‘ketotherapeutics’. His research is focused on how both ketogenic high-fat diets and giving C8 oil or supplementing ketones can help prevent Alzheimer’s, slow down cognitive decline, improve mood and lessen anxiety.

The conventional advice to eat a low-fat diet for weight control may help reduce your calorie intake but could be bad for your brain and future risk of dementia.

New evidence shows that brain cells clog up if presented with too much energy from sugar (glucose or fructose) derived from carbs rather than fats. Type 2 diabetes, a consequence of too much sugar, almost doubles the risk for dementia.[i] However, very high-fat ‘ketogenic’ diets, which are low in carbs and contain almost no sugar, substantially reduce that risk.

The brain can derive much of its energy needs from ketones and fats. The brain also depends on omega-3 fats for signalling systems, enabling us to think. Increased intake of omega-3, either from diet or supplements or having a higher omega-3 blood level, cuts the risk for dementia by a fifth (20%), according to a study of over 100,000 people just published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.[ii]

Low-Fat Diets and Low-Fat Food

The trouble with low-fat diets and low-fat foods, in general, is that they are inevitably higher in carbohydrates, especially sugar. Carbohydrates are rapidly digested down to glucose, a vital brain fuel in quantity. However, overeating refined ‘white’ carbohydrates regularly messes up the glucose supply to the brain by promoting insulin resistance.[iii]

However, brain cells can run on an alternative fuel, ketones, made in the liver from fat. Brain cells prefer to run on ketones when available, giving the brain an energy boost. The body can make ketones and improve memory by consuming medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) in fatty foods such as oily fish and coconut oil.

“Our research shows that the areas of the brain that have trouble using glucose for energy can use ketones perfectly well, even in moderately advanced dementia. This may explain why many people later in life who are given a supplement of C8 oil or MCT oil have improvements on a battery of cognitive tests. They often feel it brings their brain power back to life,” says Cunnane.

If you’d like to attend the webinar on June 6th, or watch a video recording, go to

I hope you enjoyed that.

Talk soon


The Food for the Brain Foundation ( is an educational and research charity on dementia prevention. It’s a free online validated Cognitive Function Test, followed by the Dementia Risk Index questionnaire assessing eight drivers of dementia, including ‘brain fats’ and ‘low carbs & GL’, thus identifying those eating too many carbs and not enough brain fats, then advising them what to do.

Watch this film to understand how your brain makes energy from ketones

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  • Rose Ann Sales

    This is a really interesting and very informative post. Knowing more about this topic is really great. Thanks for sharing this with us

  • Bedabrata Chakraborty

    Thanks for sharing this enlightening article. I knew a high-carb diet has severe health risks but never knew it had a role in dementia. Another reason to limit rice and white flour.

  • Monidipa Dutta

    Your thorough analysis and clear presentation of the research findings provide valuable insights for readers concerned about their cognitive health. The inclusion of practical tips and recommendations for maintaining a balanced diet is highly beneficial. Thank you for shedding light on this important topic and helping readers make informed choices about their dietary habits and long-term brain health.

  • knycx journeying

    Thanks for sharing this information and I think a lot of people are still having the impression that “fat is bad”, I have been on a low-carb diet for years and I think it’s important to share this news to more people. – knycx journeying

  • Ntensibe Edgar

    Aahhhh yes, I get the connection now clearly! The more carbs we consume, we build higher insulin resistance in our bodies, which ends us up with some form of diabetes. Diabetes has always had a close link with forgetting things.

  • Catherine Shane Cabuhat

    I am not aware that this kind of diet will lead to or risk dementia. I’m sad because I can’t control my sugar intake as I love sweets. But thank you for raising awareness regarding this!

  • beth

    No special diet is required for people with dementia, however, eating a well balanced, nutritious diet can be beneficial.

  • Marysa

    The brain definitely seems to thrive on fats. It is interesting how different diets can affect your body, and it is a good reminder to find a balance.

  • Debbie

    Very interesting post. As someone with dementia in the family tree – I especially found the link between a low fat and high carb diet and an increase in dementia risk eye opening.

  • Nyxie

    Dementia is something I am terrified of, so to have evidence like this arise is actually quite comforting. It means there is potentially a way we can fight back against it.

  • Stephanie L

    I have cut low-fat foods out for other reasons, but it’s great to know it can help by lowering carbs and reducing dementia risk. I love carbs, but still try to watch how many I eat.

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