Keto isn’t just one of the most popular diets of the year: It’s a Silicon Valley life-hacking fixation, a Hollywood trend, and fodder for numerous online communities. Devotees can meet at low-carb keto cruises, conferences, and cafes and buy pseudo-medical supplements and devices to check whether they’re truly in “ketosis,” the holy grail fat-burning state these dieters are after.
In this month’s Highlight cover story, we look at keto, the diet that’s so extreme that few can maintain it. (Followers avoid ice cream and pizza, as well as whole grains, fruits, and legumes.) But a growing body of science is exploring whether the strict keto diet might actually be a potential foil for Type 2 diabetes and other illnesses.
Also in this issue: As spending on pets continues to rise, and technology in the vet’s office improves, pet owners are increasingly finding themselves in vet debt; a look at the image-tweaking app Facetune; the story on cosmic rays; and more.
The extreme diet phenomenon may offer clues on how nutrition can treat disease.
by Julia Belluz
Are rising costs of care, and readily available credit, leading pet owners into vet debt?
by Peter Rugg
A face-perfecting app only widens the gap between our digital and real selves.
by Rebecca Jennings
But with large-scale experiments, scientists around the world are determined to find out.
by Brian Resnick
Legally changing my name was an emotional day. The best part was sharing it with strangers.
by J. Dylan Sandifer
Feeding animals can seem helpful. But it does more harm than good.
by Alison Hermance