Too Much Protein Harms a Ketogenic Diet

Too much protein can get you out of Ketosis

Protein can get converted to glucose by a process called gluconeogenesis.  If you consume too many carbohydrates, your body will stop making ketones and if you consume too much protein, your body will also stop making ketones.  Eating too much protein and not eating enough micronutrients are the most common mistakes with the ketogenic diet.  More on this here.


mTor and too much protein

Eating too much protein activates the mtor pathway.  mTor is a protein that serves as a nutrient signaling pathway that is the key muscle building mechanism in all mammals.

If you active the mTor pathway, cells grow and reproduce quickly.  This pathway also reduces cellular repair and regeneration.

Because of this, we do not want to stimulate this pathway if we are concerned about longevity and preventing diseases such as cancer.

When the mTor pathway is not turned on, your cells are repairing themselves and cleaning up damaged cells (called authophagy).  This is a very important component of anti-aging.

The Atkins and Paleo diets typically stimulate mTor because of the high levels of protein consumed.

The Ketogenic diet is better for anti-aging because a lower amount of protein is consumed, which is important for not stimulating mTor.


How to figure out how much protein to eat without stimulating mTor

The maximum amount of protein you should eat per day is a calculation based on lean body mass.  The formula is 1 gram of protein for each kilogram of Lean body mass.


How to figure lean body mass

Weight in kilograms x bodyfat % = lbs of fat

Weight – lbs of fat = lean body mass

Then convert lbs to kg by dividing by 2.2



This person weighs 181 lbs and has 15% bodyfat

181 lbs x 15% (0.15) = 27 lbs of fat

181 lbs – 27 lbs of fat = 154 lbs of lean body mass

154 lbs divided by 2.2 kg = 70 grams of protein should be the max amount for the day

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