Extreme KEN diet uses tube in nose and forces body into starvation mode

Expert has labelled the diet 'shocking'

An extreme diet has been devised that sees a naso-gastric tube inserted into people's stomachs and forces the body into starvation mode.

The Ketogenic Enteral Nutrition diet involves dieters being drip fed a protein based solution 24-hours-a-day.

Those behind the diet promise those who undertake it will lose between 7 to 10 per cent of their body weight if they follow the plan for 10 days.

It works by forcing the body to go into a ketogenic state, which it does when in starvation mode, and start to break down its own fat stores to use for energy – which it is not getting from food. 

Dieters will have to have the nasal tube in for the entirety of the 10 days, and carry a backpack containing several pints of the protein solution being fed to them via the tube.

They are also allowed to drink water, tea or coffee (without milk or sugar), and sugar-free herbal teas.

The KEN diet will usually provide around 260 calories a day via the protein solution and users are allowed to disconnect the tube for an hour a day for things such as washing. 

Nasogastric feeding is used by doctors to feed patients who cannot eat using their mouths. 

It was originally sold as a diet method by Gianfranco Cappello, an associate professor of general surgery at the University of Rome, who has treated thousands of people using the diet. 

The diet is due to come under scrutiny in Channel 4 show How To Lose Weight Well, hosted by health expert Dr Xand Van Tulleken.

Dr Tulleken tried the diet and wrote a piece about his experience for the Daily Mail, saying: “There's no denying the KEN diet is ludicrously strange, but - and I hate to admit this - it works.”

However, back in 2012, when the KEN diet found favour with the celebrity and modelling world, Sian Porter, a spokesperson for the British Dietetic Association said that the diet was “shocking”.

Ms Porter told The Telegraph: “It is shocking that people are electing to have naso-gastric tubes inserted in order to lose weight, usually reserved to treat sick or chronically ill people. Not only that but one of the side effects is having to take laxatives because this diet provides absolutely no fibre.”

Diet Tube, a firm which offers the treatment, warns on its website that side effects can include constipation, as no fibre is consumer at all. Those who undergo the diet are also told to contact the doctor if they experience fainting, severe dizziness, excessive perspiration. Dieters are also advice “not to stay alone” on the website.  

Dieters are also advice “not to stay alone” on the website.