The keto diet can be defined as a high-fat low-carb diet offering fitness goals and health benefits. Recent studies have proven that with the help of this diet, you can lose weight as well as improve your health to a greater extent. It also prevents diseases like cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and epilepsy.
What is the meaning of keto diet?
Keto diet mainly intends to produce insulin and glucose when you have something that has high carbs. Glucose acts as an energy source for the body and insulin helps to carry the glucose throughout the bloodstream in your body.
Ketosis helps us to survive even when the food intake is minimal by producing ketones from the fats stored in the liver.
Advantages of following a ketogenic diet
There are ample numbers of long term benefits of being on a keto diet. Here are some of them:
- Weight loss: This diet uses body fat as a source of energy, and thus, leading to weight loss. The insulin level drops immensely, turning your system into a machine used to burn fat. Scientifically, the ketogenic diet weight loss has been proven to be better than most high-carb and low-fat diets.
- Mental focus: Ketones work like magic for the brain. When you reduce the carb intake, it helps to avoid blood sugar. And together, this helps to increase concentration and focus of the mind.
- Blood sugar under control: Ketosis diet makes sure you have such meals which shall naturally reduce your blood sugar level. In other words, it prevents diabetes from creeping into your body.
- Normalized Hunger & Increased Energy: Burning fats act as a fuel for the body. It provides a more reliable source of energy, making you feel enthusiastic throughout the day. Moreover, this helps our system to feel full for a more extended period, and thus, your body will remain satisfied.
- Blood pressure & Cholesterol: This diet is very useful for people suffering from high blood pressure and cholesterol because this diet improves your blood pressure and as mentioned, burn fats, thus reducing cholesterol and leading to weight loss.
- Epilepsy: The ketogenic diet has proven to be very useful since forever for children with uncontrollable epilepsy. It reduces the medication to a certain level, while still keeping epilepsy under control. Recently, it has shown success even in adults who were treated with this therapy.
- Acne: It’s a given that you would experience some improvements on your skin as soon as you start a ketosis diet. And for acne, all you need to do is reduce the intake of dairy products and also, follow a particular skin cleaning procedure.
- Insulin Resistance: This diet shall lower the insulin level and thus, preventing diabetes. If you leave the insulin resistance unattended, it might cause some severe problems in the long run.
What does the ketosis diet consist of?
- Leafy greens
- Dairy products
- Berries and avocado
- Vegetables grown above the ground
- Seeds and nuts
Vegetables to eat while on a keto diet
Net carbs vary in vegetables. So, make sure you know which to have when and how. Vegetables highly preferred on this diet are:
- Spinach- raw
- Lettuce- romaine
- Cabbage- raw
- Kale- steamed
- Bok choi- raw
- Cauliflower- either steamed or raw
- Collard greens
- Green beans- steamed
How to achieve ketosis?
Achieving keto might seem little complicated but here’s what you should do:
- Restrict carbohydrates intake.
- Do not worry about fat.
- Say no to snacks.
- Exercise on a daily basis.
- Restrict protein intake.
- Drink lots of water.
- Try to stay on fast.
- Start supplementing.
Various types of ketogenic diets
The ketogenic diet can be classified into the following categories:
- Standard Ketogenic Diet (SKD): This is the typical diet followed by most people.
- Targeted Ketogenic Diet (TKD): This diet is slightly different that SKD. Here, you need to follow SKD along with minimal intake of carbs before working out.
- Cyclical Ketogenic Diet (CKD): This is mainly for contestants and bodybuilders, usually taking a day to carb up and resupplying glycogen stores.
How to figure out you are in ketosis?
Specific symptoms shall help you understand if you are on the right track or not. Here are few of them:
- Increased urination
- Bad breath
- Dry mouth
- Reduced hunger
- Increased energy
Potential side effects
It’s very common to have side effects while starting a new diet. People on ketogenic diet weight loss usually face lack of vitamins or dehydration. Thus, it’s imperative that you drink almost a gallon of water every day and also eat meals having a good source of micronutrients. Here are some of the usual side effects:
- Constipation: Caused by dehydration. Just drink lots of water to avoid this situation.
- Cramps: Leg cramps are a minor issue and a pretty common one while starting a keto diet.
- Affects physical performance: Your body shall need some time to adapt to this diet. Once it starts using fats as a source of energy, your endurance and strength will return to average and even better.
- Heart palpitations: It’s pretty standard issue but if you want to avoid it, drink lots of fluids and make sure you eat enough salt to keep the pressure regular.
Apart from these, there are few not-so-common side effects:
- Increased cholesterol
- Hair loss
Although keto diet is a great idea, it’s not meant for everyone. It’ll be beneficial for people who are overweight, suffering from diabetes or just looking to improvise their health metabolism. It might not suit athletes or those who wish to be masculine or needs to gain weight. And there will be no problems if you continue the diet and be consistent for a long term. All in all, keto has been proven to be highly useful when it comes to weight loss or preventing several diseases and also on providing a fit and fine life to lead in future!