Every diet designed to help you live a healthier and better life each has their own specific rules and promised outcomes. One diet that has constantly been gaining popularity, with several people backing its credibility, is the Ketogenic (Keto) Diet.
What is the Keto Diet?
Keto Diet focuses on eating low to no carb meals to force your body into a state of ketosis.
Ketosis is when ketone molecules, which come from your body’s stored fat, are released and build up in your bloodstream.
In the absence of blood sugar that come from carbohydrates, the cells in your body would turn to using the ketone bodies to create and generate energy.
You’re usually able to get into ketosis within two to four days.
Is it Good For You?
Because the body uses up the stored fat instead of blood sugar to generate energy, there are several benefits tied to practicing the Keto diet such as:
- Lower blood pressure
- Lower blood sugar and insulin levels
- Higher good cholesterol in the body
- More fat loss
- Less eating
Aside from these benefits, Keto diet promises quicker and severe weight loss. Because the body adapts to using stored fat as energy sources, fat loss from abdominal cavity takes place.
Being under the Ketogenic diet need supervision and maintenance.
Maintaining your body in ketosis (learn more about it here) state can be helped in three ways:
1. Moderate Protein Levels
One misconception tied to the Keto diet is that you can eat a high amount of protein intake, meaning steaks and roasted chicken.
However, your body can break down the protein you put into your system and turn it into fuel, putting aside the stored fat you want your body to burn.
You must keep a balanced diet of less protein and more healthy fats so your body will use up the fats and ketones to generate energy.
2. Track Your Carbs
Observing the Keto diet doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to give up your carbs entirely. Most things I have read, suggest trying to stick to 20 grams of carbs per day if you want to reach and maintain ketosis.
You can have a low-carb keto diet, where you keep track of all your carb intake. If you eat carbs, you must take a very high intake of healthy fats along with it.
However, it would be a challenge to eat and monitor your carb intake once you successfully achieve ketosis.
3. Test Ketone Levels
There are several do-it-yourself testing products that are made to assess your ketone levels. Pretty much like a pregnancy test stick, ketone levels can be tested using urine sticks, breath meter, and blood extraction.
How Long Should You Stay on the Ketogenic Diet?
Many Native Americans live their lives in a permanent state of ketosis and their population did not drop due to it.
So I guess it is safe to say that Ketogenic diet is safe to practice for a very long time.
Keto therapy is also used for children with epilepsy and is known to reduce the frequency and intensity of seizures.
Many of these children stay under the Keto diet for as long as 12 years.
So aside from its physical benefit outcomes, it also has a genuine effect on people with this serious illness.
A recent study also showed and proved that staying under the Ketogenic diet for 10 years is safe and healthy. The study proved that there are no cardiovascular risks that are tied up with people who undergo the Keto diet.
These people were watched for 10 years and were sent to medical assessments to observe and evaluate the possible effects on their body and overall health.
So is the Keto Diet Safe?
There are some people who are not fit to observe and practice the Keto diet, such as people who have diabetes or are acidic and alcoholics.
The risk of having a diet that has high-protein and low carb can also affect people who suffer from osteoporosis, have kidney problems, and people who generally have high cholesterol.
These people could potentially have major health complications. Anyone who undergoes the Keto diet must keep being observant with the effects it has on their bodies and emotional states.
However, there are no known health complications that are brought about by Ketogenic diet, but some doctors caution that more research needs to be done before knowing for sure.
How Does it Stack Up Against Low Carb Diets?
Keto is on the strictest end of the low carb diet plans, and that’s because you pretty much eliminate sugar, and keep your carbs to around 20 grams per day.
There are some other low carb diets out there that work well too, and aren’t quite as strict as keto.
The Atkins plan has some less strict options that you can follow now, and the South Beach Diet is another decent alternative (see how it compares to keto here).
If you’re wanting to keep maximum fat burning results, though, then the ketogenic is the best diet I have tried. That’s in terms of the amount of weight you can lose in a very short amount of time.
There are a lot of different reviews out there, but if you browse the Reddit forums at all, you can find some pretty incredible success stories. These are great to see some of the results that people have achieved, but also to help get you motivated!
Before you throw out everything in your pantry that has sugar and high carb content and start filling your freezer with nothing else but high-fat foods and protein, you might want to do a test run if the Ketogenic diet is the right diet for you.
As with other diets, Keto also has its distinct set of disadvantages, making it a less than ideal option for people who have certain health issues.
*You should consult with your physician first before starting your journey with the Ketogenic diet as it can be counterproductive in terms of boosting your overall health and wellness, and you want to make sure that you are healthy enough for an extremely low-carb diet, like keto.