Ketogenic Diet | What It is, What you need to know and how to start today?
Unless you have lived under a rock for the past couple of years, you have heard about the Ketogenic Diet. It is incredibly popular all over the world, especially due to is amazing results. For many, this diet seems to be the key to finally manage to lose weight, even when many other diets have failed them before.
Not only that, the Keto diet is said to be this amazing because it is very flavorful. This means that you can lose weight while eating delicious food as much as you want.
If you have heard of this diet and are curious to know more about it, we will list and discuss everything you need to know about the Ketogenic diet. And how you can start doing it today to lose weight.
What is the Ketogenic Diet?
Before we dig deeper into the Ketogenic diet itself, we must learn a few things about macro-nutrients, considering this diet heavily involves them. There are three macro-nutrients and they are present in everything we eat. They are proteins, carbohydrates, and Fat.
These three macronutrients have different functions in our bodies with the carbohydrates being responsible to provide energy while proteins are important for our muscle, fat (the good kind) is also important for our heart health (yes).
Being so, we are mostly advised by the original food pyramid to eat these three macro-nutrients in a very specific way. Carbohydrates would be the base, taking up about 60% of our foods. Proteins will then take about 30% and Fat would be left with 10%.
However, over the years these recommendations have been challenged. This happens mostly because we are facing one of the worst obesity crises in history, which means that somehow, we are eating the wrong types of food.
The Ketogenic diet is one of the diets that challenge these recommends and completely shift the order of macro-nutrients. While on Keto, one must eat about 75% of Fat, 20% of Protein and only 5% of carbohydrates.
The goal is to make our bodies choose Fat over carbohydrates as a fuel. This would lead to our body burning fat, which would lead to a weight loss. The key point is that the Insulin, a hormone released after we eat meals rich in carbohydrates, basically works by storing all of the sugar in the form of fat. That would lead to weight gain.
What can you eat while on Keto?
The thing is, our body really loves carbohydrates. This happens because they are easy to break and be transformed into energy. It only takes about 60 seconds for our body to convert carbohydrates into energy, and the whole process already starts in our mouths, while we chew.
Therefore, as long as there are carbohydrates available our body will choose it as a fuel. Being so, we must reduce the intake to a minimum, allowing our body to shift to using fat as a fuel instead. This process is natural to our body and something that we normally do once we spend too many hours without eating anything.
To make your body go into ketosis, you need to have a meal plan rich in fat and poor in carbohydrates. To do that, you will need to eat plenty of these foods:
- Low carbohydrate fruits such as Strawberries and other berries
- Meat (chicken, red meat)
- Natural Oils
All of these foods will allow you to go into Ketosis and stay in it, which will then make you lose weight very quickly. It is important that your diet is full of nutrients and minerals since you naturally lose a lot of them during weight loss. Making sure your meal plan is rich in minerals allows the adaptation phase to be easier.
Supplements on Keto Diet
Ketogenic diet is pretty good but you can get the result a lot easier, faster and lessen side effects with the use of supplements. Supplements are highly recommended in most cases and in some cases even compulsory.
In Keto diet, your body may not receive some nutrients due to which your body may show some unusual behavior. You can read in detail about the effects and which supplements to use in our post Top 10 KetoGenic Supplements with GUARANTEED Results in 2019
What you should avoid
Any type of meal rich in carbohydrates will be enough to take you out of Ketosis. If you do that, your body will immediately shift back to use them as fuel. Then once you are back on the diet, it is almost like you are going through the process all over again.
Not only that, your carb intake needs to be super low if you are planning to successfully go into ketosis. Being so, you will have to avoid the following food items:
- Fruits (High carbohydrates ones such as orange, banana…)
- Anything made with these ingredients
One single big apple might be enough to take your body out of Ketosis, so you need to be extra careful. The recommended carbohydrate intake is only 15-25 grams if you are trying to lose weight.
Pros and Cons of Going Keto
The reason why this diet is so popular is mostly because of the results regarding weight loss. However, the Ketogenic diet is also associated with a series of other benefits. The first one of them is the increase in HDL levels (Good cholesterol) and a decrease in LDL (bad cholesterol). Having good levels of HDL might help you prevent a series of heart problems.
Not only that, but the diet also helps prevent diabetes, since is poor in sugar. Many studies actually show that the Ketogenic diet can completely reverse a pre-diabetes stage after only 6 months.
Another benefit of the diet is the decrease in insulin levels. Insulin’s job is to take the sugar out of your blood system, which will then be stored in the form of fat. High insulin levels are associated with obesity, metabolic syndrome and a series of other health problems.
By keeping your insulin levels low, you manage to prevent these problems and improve your health.
Similar to any other diet, there are also cons that should be listed. A few people find it hard to adapt to a meal plan that is rich in fat, purely because they can’t take consuming that much fat daily.
The adaptation phase can also be quite hard, with a few symptoms being headaches and laziness.
The Ketogenic diet is a diet that limits the number of carbohydrates we consume. The goal is to enter Ketosis, which basically means start to burn our own fat as a fuel that will give us the energy to go on with our routines. The diet can be a bit hard to initially digest, but there are many studies that actually prove the diet’s benefits to our health.
Not only that, it allows us to eat a lot of flavorful foods, which might make the diet easy to follow. There are not counting calories on Keto, and you are allowed to eat until you are full, as long as you are eating low carbohydrate foods.