The Ketogenic diet triggers a process called ketosis in the body, which leads to steady weight loss. Foreverfit tells you all you want to know, about this diet plan. 

Ever heard of the concept of eating fat, to burn fat? Well, this is the idea behind a Ketogenic diet, which is a low-carb high-fat diet plan that everyone wants to know about.

This diet is similar to the Atkins plan, and has a fan following among those who want to lose weight, build muscle and regulate their blood sugar. The first thing to know, is that this plan calls for you to stop eating carbohydrates, almost completely.

So if you are addicted to bread, rice, or pasta, then don’t try it. Unless you’re willing to eat mainly proteins, just stop reading this!

Changes your metabolism 

What sets the Keto diet apart from other similar plans, is that alters your body’s metabolism. Consequently, it induces ketosis , a process that triggers your body to use fat as a source of energy, instead of carbohydrates. For the most part, other low-carbohydrate diets don’t induce this condition.

2 Fundamentals of the diet

#1 Leads to Ketogenesis

The diet triggers a switch in the primary cellular fuel source from glucose to fat-based metabolic products called ketones, a metabolic process called ketogenesis.

When your body is starved of carbs, it begins burning fat for energy. Hence, the triglycerides in your blood turn into ketones, which can be used as an energy source, just like glucose.  But, a biochemical cycle of keto-adaptation may take up to 2 to 3 weeks, so be patient!

#2 Much lower in carbs than other Low-carb diets

The keto diet is unlike other general low-carb diets that simply limit your intake of carbohydrates. While most diets call for less than 130g of carbohydrates in a day, some use the 50 (fats)/30 (proteins)/20 (carbohydrates) principle, which derives about 15% to 25% of calories from carbs.

In contrast, a ketogenic diet calls for a very low percentage of carbohydrates( under 50 g a day),  to bring about ketosis in the body. For most part, it is similar to Atkins, which prescribes a consumption of under 20 g of carbohydrates in the induction phase, resulting in ketogenesis.

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Different types of keto diets

1. Standard ketogenic diet (SKD)
It is a very low-carb, moderate-protein, and high-fat diet, with food in the ratio:  75% fat, 20% protein, and 5% carbs.

2. High-protein ketogenic diet
This plan is similar to SKD but calls for a higher protein content. Eat foods in the ratio: 60% fat, 35% protein, and only 5% carbs.

3. Cyclical ketogenic diet (CKD)
This diet follows a schedule where ketogenic days are followed by higher carb-feed days. Typically, CKD involves 5 weekdays of keto diet followed by a higher carb weekend.

4. Targeted ketogenic diet (TKD)
In this plan, extra carbs are allowed only on days of workout.

Only the first two types of diets are extensively used. CKD and TKD are more advanced methods, mainly used by athletes and body builders.

Health benefits

#1 Reduces appetite and induces weight loss: The presence of ketone bodies satiates hunger pangs, and the metabolic changes in your body facilitate weight loss. Sugar cravings drop, leading to an improved blood sugar level.

#2 Decreases joint pains and stiffness: For some, grains may be a cause of chronic stiffness and joint pain. A keto diet eliminates grains altogether, which helps this group.

#3  Improves digestion: Digestive problems in some folks, are associated with eating sugar and grains. Since a keto diet eliminates these foods, it may help reduce digestive ailments and heart-burn.

#4 Breaks down insulin resistance: Insulin resistance is a common problem, which reduces the capacity of the muscles to metabolise carbohydrates, leading to a buildup of fat.  Since a ketogenic diet is low carb, it can help break down this cycle.

#5 Improves prognosis in some diseases: Some studies show that a high protein diet helps those with autism, childhood epilepsy, Alzheimer’s, cancer, and PCOS. This benefit is due to the presence of ketones, said to improve cellular health.

Risks

#1 May cause fatigue: The first few weeks may bring days of fatigue and weakness with a ketogenic plan. However, this is only till the time the body gets used to ketones as a source of energy instead of glucose.

#2 Alters blood lipid profile: Major fluctuations in the fat content of the body, may alter the lipid profile. In particular, the diet may lower cholesterol levels or cause them to peak. So it’s a good idea to keep an eye on your own.

#3 May cause deficiency of micronutrients: Since a keto diet requires you to literally drop all carbohydrates, this may lead to nutrient deficiencies. So do supplement your diet with multivitamins and minerals.

DON’T go on this diet if you suffer from any of the following conditions

  • Gall bladder disease
  • Impaired liver function
  • Impaired fat digestion
  • Abdominal tumors
  • Kidney failure
  • Pregnancy and lactation
  • Poor nutritional status
  • High blood pressure
  • Are on insulin to regulate diabetes

 

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