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What is a ketogenic diet?

Aug 16, 2022 | Blog |

Keto Explained

A very low-carb, high-fat diet, the ketogenic diet is comparable to the Atkins and low-carb diets in many ways.

It entails significantly lowering carbohydrate intake and substituting fat for it. Due to this carbohydrate restriction, your body enters a metabolic condition known as ketosis.

Your body becomes highly effective at burning fat for energy when this occurs. Additionally, it causes the liver to produce ketones from fat, which the brain can use as fuel.

Ketogenic diets can significantly reduce blood sugar and insulin levels. This has various health advantages in addition to elevated ketones.

Different ketogenic diets

The ketogenic diet comes in a variety of forms, below is a list of popular ketogenic diets.

  • The standard ketogenic diet (SKD) consists of high fat, moderate protein, and very low carbohydrate diet. Usually, it has 70% fat, 20% protein, and only 10% carbohydrates.
  • The cyclical ketogenic diet (CKD) alternates periods of lower-carb refeeds, such as five days of ketosis followed by two days of high carbs.
  • The targeted ketogenic diet (TKD): This diet permits the addition of carbs just before or after exercise.
  • The High Protein Ketogenic Diet – A ketogenic diet with a high protein content, similar to a standard ketogenic diet. Frequently, the breakdown is 60% fat, 35% protein, and 5% carbohydrates.

However, only conventional and high-protein ketogenic diets have undergone in-depth research. Bodybuilders and athletes utilize cyclical or targeted ketogenic diets as these are more sophisticated approaches.

What is Ketosis

When your body is in ketosis, it switches from using carbohydrates as fuel to using fat as fuel. It happens when you drastically cut back on carbohydrates, which restricts your body’s ability to produce glucose (sugar), the primary source of energy for cells.

The best strategy to start ketosis is to follow a ketogenic diet. Typically, this entails restricting daily carbohydrate intake to 20 to 50 grammes and consuming more fats from foods like meat, fish, eggs, nuts, and healthy oils.

It’s also crucial to limit your protein intake. This is because excessive protein consumption can result in the conversion of protein into glucose, which could delay the onset of ketosis (10Trusted Source).

You might enter ketosis more quickly if you practise intermittent fasting. There are many other ways to fast intermittently, but the most popular one entails eating just for around eight hours a day and fasting for the other sixteen.

There are tests for blood, urine, and breath that can measure the body’s production of ketones to assist identify whether you’ve reached ketosis.

Increased thirst, dry mouth, frequent urination, and decreased hunger or appetite are some other signs that you may have entered ketosis.

Weight Loss and Ketogenic Diets

A ketogenic diet is a powerful approach to weight loss and reducing disease risk factors. In fact, studies suggest that the ketogenic diet may be just as successful at helping people lose weight as a low-fat diet.

Additionally, the diet is so satisfying that you can lose weight without keeping track of your food consumption or calculating calories.

A very low carb, ketogenic diet was found to be marginally more successful for long-term weight loss than a low fat diet in one review of 13 research articles. Those who followed the ketogenic diet shed 2 pounds (0.9 kg) more weight on average than those who followed a low-fat diet. Additionally, it resulted in decreases in lipid and diastolic blood pressure.

Another study involving 34 senior citizens discovered that individuals who followed a ketogenic diet for eight weeks shed body fat almost five times faster than those who did not. Increased ketones, reduced blood sugar, and enhanced insulin sensitivity might all be significant contributors.

Additional advantages of keto

The ketogenic diet was first used to treat neurological conditions like epilepsy nad recent research has demonstrated that the diet can help a wide range of medical conditions such as.

  • Heart illness. The HDL (good) cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar, body fat, and other risk factors can all be improved with the ketogenic diet.
  • Cancer. Due to its potential to suppress tumour growth, the diet is currently being investigated as an additional cancer treatment.
  • Alzheimer’s condition. The ketogenic diet may lessen Alzheimer’s disease signs and symptoms and halt the disease’s progression.
  • Epilepsy. According to studies, children with epilepsy can significantly reduce their seizure frequency by following the ketogenic diet.
  • Parkinson’s condition. One study discovered that the diet reduced the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, but additional research is required.
  • Syndrome of polycystic ovaries. A crucial factor in polycystic ovarian syndrome may be reduced insulin levels, which the ketogenic diet can help with.
  • Brain Damage. According to certain studies, the diet might help traumatic brain injuries heal more quickly

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