Skip to main content

Dietary Ketosis for Memory Loss and MCI


The study will explore the effect of dietary ketosis (a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet also known as the ketogenic diet) on adults with early-stage memory loss and metabolic syndrome.

Minimum Age Maximum Age Gender Healthy Volunteers
35 Years 80 Years All Yes
October 15, 2017
September 30, 2018

  • At least 2 of the following: type 2 diabetes, body mass index over 30, hemoglobin A1c level over 5.7, waist to height ratio more than .6, fasting glucose level higher than 125
  • Subjective memory complaints
  • Diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment

  • Diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease, another dementia, or Parkinson's disease

Metabolic syndrome occurs when several symptomsincluding obesity, high blood pressure, and insulin resistanceoccur together, and it can disrupt the way the body obtains energy from food. The symptoms are risk factors for cognitive impairment and dementia. Researchers believe a ketogenic diet, which promotes energy use from fats rather than carbohydrates, may reduce these symptoms and improve brain function. 

In this study participants in the experimental group will receive 3 meals per day based on a ketogenic diet (with a breakdown of roughly 65 percent fat, 25 percent protein, and 10 percent carbohydrate per meal). Participants in the control group will follow their current diet, which will be consumed in 4 to 6 small meals per day. Both groups will play brain training games on mobile phone or tablet devices for 75 minutes per week. Researchers will measure changes in cognitive function and memory over a 12-week period.

Name City State Zip Status Primary Contact
Bristlecone Health, Inc.
Maple Grove Minnesota 55311

Bristlecone Health Inc.

  • University of Minnesota - Clinical and Translational Science Institute

Name Role Affiliation
Kelly J. Gibas, PhD Principal Investigator Bristlecone Health Inc.

Name Phone Email
Julie A. Gomer, PhD 763-913-4600


Dietary Ketosis a Metabolic Sister to Calorie Restriction (CR): Fatty Acids Activate AMPK Energy Circuits Modulating Global Methylation Via the SAM/SAH Axis