What is Keto Diet?: The keto diet is a very low-carbohydrate diet. It is so little in carbohydrates that the body has to switch to using fat. When the body is lacking sugar, fat is converted in the liver into energy molecules called ketones that fuels the brain and the body. The diet that outcome in this shift from normal to low-carb is called ketogenic, which means it produces ketones. That’s why this diet is called the keto diet.
How does it Work?
The ketogenic diet shares many similarities with other low-carb diets. It involves a drastic reduction in carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat. This reduction in carbs will put your body into a metabolic state called ketosis. When this happens, your body becomes highly efficient at burning fat for energy. It also turns fats into ketones in the liver, which supplies energy to the brain. This increased ketone level has numerous health benefits. Because it gives you tons of energy, you’ll never run out.
Overall, there is a killer disaster lurking, a massive obesity epidemic. Many of the people in the modernized world are either overweight or obese. And related with this concern, there is a massive global diabetes epidemic i.e too much sugar in people’s blood.
The keto diet shows to be one of the effective solutions thus, become very popular in recent times. However, the foundation of keto is something old that you must have heard of. It is a
- Strict low-carb diet
- paleo diet
- Atkins diet (it’s very close to the old and well-known)
- A Gluten-free diet
The body’s metabolism shifts away from carbs and glides towards fats and ketones. You simply avoid most carbohydrate-rich food like-Sugar, Processed junk food, Bread, Pasta, Rice, etc.
What’s different with Keto?
The keto diet is an improvised version of an old and traditional idea. Close diets have been tried for decades, even centuries. And this could have a holometabolic explanation as our ancestors never eat refined carbohydrates or sugar like we do today. Hence, our systems in the body cannot adapt and sustain such high-carb food.
Those who follow a keto diet, people can lose excess weight without hunger and also tend to improve chronic health concerns /disorders. It is very important to observe, the keto diet is not just used as a temporary fix, it is a long term lifestyle. Not just for weight loss, but for consistent well-being and staying fit year-round. Most of them feel energized, full of mental clarity and have stable blood sugar levels. The strong craving for sweets is reduced, so there is no need to snack at break-time. You can relish delicious food, whenever hungry without worrying about the calories.
Now, of course, some exercise is needed for health and to feeling your best, but it’s not essential for weight loss and certainly not, if on keto.
How about your Diet
Internationally, we have easy access to high carb foods 24/7. Foods that are also hyper-attractive, i.e they are potentially addictive. Therefore if we consume what everyone else is eating, we are likely to eat and drink sugar or starch too many times per day. You know always we eat high-carb food, it increases the amount of sugar in our blood. Later, we make sure our body burns sugar.
The glucose level in blood is that it shuts down our body’s fat-burning mechanism via the hormone, Insulin. Now insulin is the body’s fat-storing hormone, it tells your body to store a still you eat for later. So the sugar is burned first and the fat is stored for later and that’s the problem. In a nutshell, later never comes.
The junk and starchy food rapidly breaks down in the gut to glucose, raising one’s blood sugar and insulin levels. So if you eat what most people eat, the bloodstream is constantly full of sugar. What’s even worse is turning them into diabetics and at the same time, constantly storing fat. And that’s why we have an obesity epidemic.
Eating less and moving more is not enough to regulate sugar levels. Let’s try to understand some research-based clinical benefits of keto-diet.
Health Benefits of Keto diet
Even though sugar may be the quickest form of energy, it doesn’t keep your brain at its best. Some expert dietitians state that much of the evidence has proved that the brain performs better on ketones than on blood sugar.
The important function of ketone as energy boosters and fuel the brain in the absence of glucose. With a normal diet, the brain gets all its energy from glucose. However, if you are on a ketogenic diet, two-third of energy to the brain comes from ketones. It’s crystal clear that brain function changes remarkably on a ketogenic diet.
The fat accumulation in the liver is commonly associated with pre-diabetic and type 2 diabetes. In extreme cases, fatty liver disease can damage the liver to a great extent. The test reports of the condition by measuring levels of liver enzymes using blood tests.
“These enzymes were significantly reduced in the clinical patients, indicating less risk of developing fatty liver disease,” states Dr. Phinney, a diabetes expert. In your health report shows that you have a risk for fatty liver, you may want to give keto diet plan a try. Initially, if you start any new dietary plan, update yourself with proper knowledge.
A positive result is that the health benefit of the keto diet is reducing epileptic seizures in children. Doctors have been using keto diet therapy for this purpose since the early 20th Cen. It is often suggested for children who suffer from certain physical and mental disorders i.e Lennox-Gastaut syndrome or Rett syndrome.
They don’t show positively to seizure medication, according to the Epilepsy Foundation. Keto diet can decrease the number of seizures in the children 15 to 20 percent becoming seizure-free. In many cases, it may also help patients to regulate the dosage of their medication.
Epilepsy can also control in adults with a keto diet, as it may decrease the frequency of seizures. After some positive results in patients, the keto diet is developed.
Helps in Weight Loss
The only reason people adopt a keto diet nowadays is due to its weight loss benefits. Basically, weight loss comes from the loss of water because you cut down on carbs in your diet. The body uses the carbohydrates stored in the liver. The keto diet results in further weight loss as it initiates you to load up on whole, high-fat foods.
When you cut down on carbs, you’ll also cut sugar intake, which means a steadier supply of keto energy. If the system gets used to the diet, you have stable energy levels and you don’t have to take a snack break at 4 p.m. “The keto diet may lead to fewer hunger pangs and also lower the craving to eat.” (A research article in the journal Obesity Review stated)
“ Keto diet leads to greater and healthier weight loss than a low-fat diet.” (One study published in the British Journal of Nutrition)
Possible Role in Disease Prevention and Treatment
In the weight loss treatment, the keto diet may play a vital role, and also in the treatment or prevention of diseases such as:
a. Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease
“The older adults i.e the high-risk group, on a keto diet experienced better memory functioning after six weeks.” ( A study published in Neurobiology of Aging )
Few experts, support low-carb diets for patients as one way to delay brain aging and possibly Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia.
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b. Controls Type-2 Diabetes
Research suggests that a keto diet could help people with type 2 diabetes and can lead to an improvement in their HbA1c levels.
The keto diet can reduce your daily carbohydrates to less than 20 grams; for people with diabetes, this may help them manage sugar levels. A one-year study on people with type 2 diabetes placed on ketosis, showed improved blood sugar control. Obesity Patients are able to lose on average, 12 percent of their body weight.
The ketogenic diet may also help the patients who affected Bipolar Disorder, Parkinson’s disease and certain types of Cancers.
What do you eat on a keto diet?
This diet plan is a rich-fatty, controlled protein, low carbohydrate eating pattern, which differs from the basic healthy eating habit. Many nutrient-rich foods are sources of carbohydrates, including fruits.
The keto diet is based on food like:
- Oils ( olive oil, avocado oil, and coconut oil)
- Heavy cream, Butter, Cheese
- Coconut (unsweetened)
- Nuts and seeds (almonds, macadamia, chia seeds, flaxseed, sunflower seeds)
- Leafy green vegetables (romaine, spinach, kale, collards)
- Non-starchy vegetables, including zucchini, asparagus, cucumber, broccoli, cauliflower, and bell peppers
- Meats (chicken, beef, pork, lamb)
- Fish (salmon and sardines)
High-Carb food to Avoid:
- Starchy foods
A simple way to explain the difference between Regular food and the keto diet is that you remove the large portion of carbs, rice, potatoes or pasta and replace it with vegetables prepared in fats. For example, veggies or salads fried in butter or olive oil. It can be that simple.
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This eating pattern/dietary plan may not be recommended for individuals with:
- Pancreatic disease
- Liver conditions
- Thyroid problems
- History of eating disorders
- Gallbladder disease or those who have had their gallbladder removed
Kindly understand the risk factors and side-effects involved. Some of them may lead to keto flu, dehydration, kidney stones or uncommon nutritional deficiencies. Before you start keto diet please consult your physician or a dietary expert.
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