Date of Award


Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS)


Physician Assistant Studies

First Advisor

Julie Skiba


Ketogenic diet; Type 2 diabetes mellitus; HbA1c; Blood glucose; Low carbohydrate diet


With the increasing rate of patients diagnosed with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and the serious complications associated with this disease, there continues to be controversy surrounding the most effective way to manage glycemic control in this population. The intention of this meta-analysis is to determine the effect of a ketogenic diet as a first-line treatment option on glycemic control in type 2 diabetic patients. Effectiveness was determined by comparing the ketogenic diet to other popular diets recommended to diabetics by practitioners following guidelines set forth by the American Diabetes Association. Several high-quality studies were selected utilizing PubMed, Dynamed plus, Cochrane Library, CINAHL, and Clinical Key databases with keyword and MeSH terms to narrow search results. The studies in the analysis provides data on the effects of the diets on HbA1c along with other parameters such as body weight, lipids, fasting and postprandial blood glucose levels of which can increase the risk of complications and associated diseases in T2DM patients. According to several studies, initiation of a ketogenic diet as a first-line treatment plan does not improve health parameters more than the current recommended diets for T2DM patients. With multiple diet plans providing health benefits in a type 2 diabetics, the main component of success was diet adherence. The research does show promise, but the treatment plan will need to be individualized based on the patient’s readiness and willingness to implement lifestyle changes.