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To Keto or Not to Keto

A Diet Dilemma


Author(s)

Nora S. Green
Department of Chemistry
Randolph-Macon College
ngreen@rmc.edu

Abstract

This directed case study is framed as a discussion between a biochemistry major and her boyfriend who is interested in trying the Keto diet. The case is intended to tie together a variety of metabolism topics in a way that engages the students and relates these topics to issues in their own lives. Together with “Melanie” and “Mike,” students explore questions about basic cellular metabolism, ketones, and the overall health impacts of this popular diet. The case was originally designed for use in the second semester of a two-semester undergraduate biochemistry course after the main topics of normal metabolism (glycolysis, gluconeogenesis, the citric acid cycle, beta-oxidation of lipids, and lipid catabolism) have been covered.


Objectives

  • Explain the normal mechanisms of the central pathways of metabolism (glycolysis, gluconeogenesis, the citric acid cycle, beta-oxidation, protein breakdown and their relationship to insulin and glucagon).
  • Demonstrate the interconnectedness of metabolism topics.
  • Analyze the metabolic rationale for the weight loss claims of the keto diet.

Keywords

Metabolism; glycolysis; citric acid cycle; beta-oxidation; low carbohydrate diet; keto diet; ketosis; Nernst; Atkins; gluconeogenesis; glucagon

Topical Areas

N/A

Educational Level

Undergraduate upper division

Format

PDF

Type / Methods

Directed

Language

English

Subject Headings

Biochemistry  |   Cell Biology  |  


Date Posted

12/01/2020

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