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The department of kinesiology is turning nutrition research into a team sport.

Ketogenic diets — often referred to simply as “keto” — are popular among people attempting to lose weight and improve mental acuity. This diet is also gaining interest among athletes who believe it can help improve performance. But does it?

Literature on the effects of a keto diet — one that is very low in carbohydrates — on athletes is scarce. To help bridge that gap, faculty, graduate students and undergraduate students in kinesiology are comparing a ketogenic diet with a diet high in carbohydrates. Their purpose is to evaluate the diets’ effects on energy expenditure, blood lipids, sleep quality, appetite, and cognitive function and mood in cyclists and triathletes.

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