The controversial high-fat, low-carb keto diet can add 10 years to your lifespan, research has shown.
Two new studies have concluded that the lifestyle - favored by self-modeled health expert Gwyneth Paltrow and others such as Mick Jagger and Kim Kardashian - can even ward off Alzheimer's and cancer.
The studies tested mice who were fed the keto diet and found that they were more resistant to life-threatening diseases, and were more likely to live to old age in good health.
Researchers are now trying to create a supplement that will provide humans with the benefits of the diet without making them adhere to it.
The ketogenic diet is popular among celebrities such as Mick Jagger (left) - who became a father last year at 72 years old - and Gwyneth Paltrow (right)
People who follow a ketogenic diet replace carbohydrates, such as white bread, pasta and grains, with high-fat foods, such as cream and butter.
Adverse effects of the diet include impaired growth, which can be caused by a nutrient deficiency, as well as an increased risk of getting kidney stones.
Research has shown that low-carb meals produce a chemical called beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB).
BHB is a ketone, which is a chemical compound that is a byproduct of the process of fat breaking down in the liver. Ketones serve as alternative metabolic fuels for the brain and heart.
BHB is produced when someone adheres to a low-carb, high-fat diet. This happens because when they turn off access to gluclose - a primary fuel derived from eating carbohydrates - the body taps into its own fat stores for energy. This process is called ketosis.
For one of the two new studies, researchers from the University of California Davis fed mice a ketogenic diet, which was 90 percent fat. They started the mice on the diet when they had turned one, which is middle age for them.
A typical keto diet meal
The keto diet was originally created as a cure for epilepsy.
It is prescribed to children who do not respond well to medications that treat epilepsy.
This cure can allow them to, eventually, stop seizing completely.
The following are examples of meals that people on the keto diet could eat:
BREAKFAST:half a cup of coconut milk half a cup of cultured dairy four tablespoons of chia, flax or hemp seeds two raw eggs