You may have heard of the Ketogenic, or Keto diet. You can thank many celebrities for trying it out, but is it actually right for you? It's most famous for rapid weight loss and getting hunger under control, but many people lack any further knowledge. We're here to take a closer look into the diet fad and uncover the true details.
What Is The Keto Diet?
In simple terms, the Keto diet is a low carb, low protein, and high fat diet. To put things into perspective: 5%-10% of dietary intake comes from carbs, 20%-25% of calories come from protein, and the bulk of energy comes from fat, the rest of the 70%-75%. This diet plan forces the body into a state of ketosis, and molecules called ketones build up in their bloodstream. The low carbohydrate levels then cause blood sugar levels to drop, and the body begins breaking down fat to use as energy, rather than carbs. Make sense?
Pros of The Keto Diet
Now that you know more about the Keto Diet, we will break down the pros first for you.
Quick Weight Loss & Increased Fat Burning
Most people on the Keto Diet experience rapid weight loss. This is great for those who have trouble shedding weight or have a lot of weight to lose. Additionally, quick results are motivating and encourage them to stay on the diet. Since the body is using fat for energy rather than relying on carbohydrates, you'll burn fat faster as well. Insulin levels drop while in ketosis, which also allows the body to burn fat more efficiently.
Decreased Appetite & Increased Energy
Being in a state of ketosis can naturally decrease your appetite. Meanwhile, the increased fat helps people feel satisfied during the day and eliminates the need for snacking. A lower carbohydrate intake also keeps the blood sugar levels even, so you can keep your energy steady. Thus, many experience increased energy and stamina during it.
Mental Clarity & Less Health Issues
This new diet has shown mental clarity and less “brain fog” in participants. They are said to have increased concentration and are more focused, which is great for everyone. On the other hand, the keteogenic diet can lessen an array of physical health issues. These include lowering the risk of heart disease and reducing epileptic seizures.
Cons of The Keto Diet
The Keto Diet may sounds great, but there are many important cons to note.
Harsh Adaptation Period
Extremely low-carb diets have an adaptation period that lasts 1 – 2 weeks. This means you have to wait this long before seeing results and before your body adjusts to it. It's uncomfortable to experience since you may suffer from headaches, flu-like symptoms, sugar cravings, and muscle cramps. You also may not have the necessary energy production for maximum performance in sports.
Strict To Follow
You must understand that the Keto Diet is very restrictive and eliminate entire food groups from this plan. The amounts of vegetables and proteins are very low, and micro-nutrients, vitamins, and minerals are all missing. This diet is very strict, but must be followed exactly and diligently to see results. It's a struggle for many to stick to the Ketogenic diet, and it makes dining out very complicated.
Digestive & Body Issues
Introducing a high fat diet can lead to a higher risk of coronary disease, so it's important to note that since you're literally doubling your fat intake. Additionally, dietary changes often lead to digestive issues. Constipation is popular since your fiber intake is limited. Lastly, there's a worry that participants could experience muscle loss if they stay on it long-term.
Tips For The Keto Diet
If you truly want to make the Keto Diet work for you and be successful, then consider some of the below tips:
- Mind your portions and count your carbs, protein, and fat grams
- Choose healthy fats to maintain your heart health (mono-saturated fats, olive oil, avocado, lean meat, nuts and seeds)
- Drink more water to stay hydrated throughout the day
- Monitor your muscle mass, body fat, bone mass, and body water
- Take vitamins and supplements to support digestive health and other needs.
- Exercise every day to help accelerate fat burning
- Make any modifications or see a doctor if the Keto Diet is affecting your health negatively