Ketogenic Diets Starve Cancers to Death

by | Breast Cancer, Dietary Risk Factors

Cancer cells thrive on sugars, not typically fats. Diets based on fats versus carbohydrates and sugars may not only slow the progression of cancer, but “starve it to death”. Consider then, the power of the ketogenic diet.

Cancer Cells Feed on Glucose

Cancer cells metabolize and thrive on glucose, so if one’s diet restricts the carbohydrates and sugars that break down to glucose, cancer cells are essentially starved to death.

The Ketogenic Diet

The Ketogenic Diet eliminates sugars, restricts carbohydrates (except for non-starchy vegetables), includes low to moderate amounts of high-quality protein, and emphasizes beneficial fats.

Starving Cancer to Death

From Dr. Mercola, “The premise is that since cancer cells need glucose to thrive, and carbohydrates turn into glucose in your body, then lowering the glucose level in your blood though carb and protein restriction literally starves the cancer cells into oblivion. Additionally, low protein intake tends to minimize the mTOR pathway that accelerates cell proliferation.”

Fat Burning vs Carb Burning

Carbohydrates break down to sugars and glucose, while fats break down to ketones. The Ketogenic Diet forces the body’s cells to adapt from depending on carbohydrates to depending on ketones for energy. In essence, the body shifts from carb burning to fat burning.

Cancer Cells Cannot Metabolize Ketones

Cancer cells cannot make the shift: they depend on glucose for energy. Eliminating sugars and restricting carbs to only non-starchy vegetables effectively starves cancer.

Carbohydrates and Sugars Feed Cancer

Fats and Ketones Starve Cancer

 Reduce Blood Glucose Levels

Consider reducing blood glucose levels and following a Low Glycemic Load/Index (see our article coming July 7, 2021). Are you aware that fruits are typically high in sugar? But there are exceptions, i.e. coconuts and avocados.

Even though it is a fruit, an entire avocado has only about 1 g of sugar, with healthy fiber and fat content!

Beware: Insulin and Leptin Resistance

Some people have become leptin-resistant (like becoming insulin-resistant) through continuous overexposure to a diet high in sugar (particularly fructose), grains, and processed foods. As sugar (fructose) gets metabolized in fat cells, they release surges in leptin. Over time, the body can become leptin resistant, just as it can become resistant to insulin, and overweight.

Whole Food Diets Combat Leptin Resistance

To re-establish proper leptin (and insulin) sensitivity, a whole food diet that emphasizes healthy fats and avoids blood sugar spikes with targeted supplements can enhance insulin and leptin sensitivity. Consider functional health professional guidance, i.e. nutritionists or naturopaths.

Resistant Starches

Resistant starch is found in starchy plant foods, especially when cooked, cooled and reheated, like rice, oats, barley, potatoes and pasta, but properly prepared whole foods are more beneficial, like raw green bananas, plantains, yams, and other root vegetables. (Consider The Definitive Guide to Resistant Starch)

From one local nutritionist, “They share many properties with fiber, helping food pass through the gut and generally improving digestion. Once it reaches the lower gut, resistant starch feeds our beneficial bacteria, which in turn produce chemicals which can help our immune systems, cardiovascular health and many other benefits.”

Resistant Starches Don’t Spike Blood Glucose

Digestive-resistant starches essentially act as prebiotics. They slowly ferment in the large intestine, nourishing healthy flora. Rather than boosting blood sugar levels, they improve insulin regulation. They also help add volume to bowel movements without bloating or excess gas.

Butyrate Fuels Intestinal Cells

Resistant starch feeds the good bacteria in the intestines and increases the production of short chain fatty acids (butyrate). Butyrate is the preferred fuel of cells that line the colon and acts as a powerful anti-inflammatory agent for the colonic cells, and functions to improve the integrity of our gut by decreasing intestinal permeability and therefore keeping toxins in the gut and out of the bloodstream.


Our mission at The Thermogram Center, Inc. is preventive education. Environmental causes of human cancer are manageable. However, the public remains unaware of the many common environmental carcinogens and the actions necessary to mitigate their risk. We hope to be a reliable source of information to help you protect you and your family from the hazardous chemicals in the air, water, food, and products threatening your well being.

by Tirza Derflinger
Founder, Author, Lead Educator, Speaker, CTT, MBA
Better Breast Health – For Life!™
Be the Cure. Seek Prevention.
text/call 303-664-1139 ●

This information is for educational purposes only and does not diagnose, treat or cure health conditions. It is not intended in any way to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with a qualified healthcare practitioner when seeking medical advice. Copyright © 2002- 2023 The Thermogram Center, Inc. All rights reserved.