Today, we will be taking a look at another diet formula that is said to turbocharger your fat burn and heighten your body’s energy levels. This new and popular diet is called The Ketogenic Diet.
According to our research, some people have managed to lose over 20 pounds of fat over six months by eating more bacon than ever before and without altering the existing exercise routine.
Yes, that’s right! Some people have managed to pull this off by using this science-based diet that accelerates fat loss while increasing your energy levels.
Before we decide to dive into how the Ketogenic diet works and why this diet works for many people, we strongly recommend you consult your doctor about any changes in diet you are considering, just to make sure that you aren’t unknowingly hurting yourself.
What Is The Ketogenic Diet?
The ketogenic diet, often called the keto diet, is a low-carb, high-fat eating plan. It reduces carbohydrate intake and replaces it with fat. This carb reduction puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis.
When this happens, your body becomes efficient at burning fat for energy. It also turns fat into ketones in the liver, which can supply energy to the brain.
Keto diets can cause significant reductions in blood sugar and insulin levels, which has additional health benefits.
What Is Ketogenesis?
Ketogenesis is a process your body undergoes to generate ketones. Ketones are chemicals produced in your liver when there isn’t enough insulin to turn sugar (or glucose) into energy.
During ketogenesis, your body breaks down fats due to a low intake of carbs, leading to the production of ketones. These ketones then serve as an alternative energy source for your body and brain.
This process is central to the ketogenic diet, as it aims to make your body rely more on fats for energy by creating a state of ketosis through reduced carbohydrate intake.
What Are Ketones?
Ketones are chemicals that your body creates when it breaks down fats for energy. This happens when your carbohydrate intake is low and your body needs to tap into fat as its primary energy source.
There are three main types of ketone bodies produced in the liver from fatty acids: acetoacetate, beta-hydroxybutyrate, and acetone.
These ketones are used by various tissues in the body, including the brain, as an energy source when glucose (the body’s usual energy source) is scarce.
This mechanism is a critical part of the ketogenic diet and ketosis, where the body adapts to burning fat instead of carbohydrates for fuel.
As mentioned previously, the Ketogenic diet can be categorized with the following calorie-intake restrictions:
- 60-80% from Fats
- 10-20% from Proteins
- 5-10% of Carbohydrates
When this diet is converted into an actual food list, it comes out like this:
- Breakfast consists of four eggs made in two tablespoons of olive oil with half an avocado.
- Lunch consists of four ounces of baked salmon in a tablespoon of olive oil, asparagus, and butter.
- Dinner consists of a rib-eye steak with coconut oil and two cups of spinach along with two ounces of macadamia nuts.
What Do The Experts Think Of The Ketogenic Diet?
Experts have varying opinions on the ketogenic diet, with some highlighting its potential benefits and others expressing concerns about its long-term effects and sustainability.
One concern is the lack of extensive research despite the diet’s long history and numerous studies, pointing to a need for more in-depth investigation into its health impacts.
Research has examined various health markers influenced by the ketogenic diet, such as blood glucose, cholesterol levels, and body fat, offering insights into its effects on metabolic health.
However, the findings are complex and suggest that individual responses to the diet can vary widely.
It’s important for anyone considering the ketogenic diet to consult with healthcare professionals, ideally a registered dietitian, to discuss its suitability based on their medical history, preferences, values, and goals.
The definition of “true keto” can vary, and a low-carbohydrate diet can be approached in both healthy and unhealthy ways.
Given the diversity of dietary approaches and the varying levels of evidence supporting them, individuals are encouraged to conduct thorough research and consider the broad spectrum of scientific and medical opinions when evaluating the ketogenic diet’s potential benefits and risks.
What Are The Negatives of the Ketogenic Diet?
The ketogenic diet, while popular for weight loss and other health benefits, has several potential negatives worth considering:
- Nutrient Deficiencies: Due to the restrictive nature of the diet, you might not get enough of certain nutrients and vitamins that come from fruits, vegetables, and grains. This could lead to deficiencies in fiber, potassium, and other important nutrients, which are essential for overall health and well-being.
- Kidney Stones: The high intake of animal proteins and fats can increase the risk of developing kidney stones and gout. Animal proteins can make your urine more acidic, which, combined with higher levels of calcium and uric acid, can lead to the formation of stones.
- “Keto Flu”: As your body adjusts to ketosis, you might experience symptoms like fatigue, headache, irritability, and digestive issues, often referred to as the “keto flu”. These symptoms are usually temporary but can be uncomfortable.
- Heart Health Risks: There’s a concern about the diet’s long-term effects on heart health, particularly due to the high intake of saturated fats, which can raise levels of bad cholesterol and increase the risk of heart disease.
- Difficulty Maintaining: The ketogenic diet is very strict and can be hard to stick to, which may lead to yo-yo dieting and potential weight regain over time. This cycle can be detrimental to your metabolic health and emotional well-being.
- Effects on Social Life and Eating Habits: The restrictive nature of the diet can also impact your social life and lead to disordered eating patterns, as it limits the ability to enjoy a wide variety of foods and can make social eating occasions challenging.
- Risks for Specific Groups: It may not be suitable for everyone, especially those with certain medical conditions like kidney disease, or those on medications for diabetes, as it can affect blood sugar levels and kidney function.
Can the Ketogenic Diet Work For You?
The ketogenic diet may be beneficial for some, especially for improving insulin sensitivity, managing epilepsy, and aiding weight loss in sedentary lifestyles.
However, it’s not suitable for everyone, particularly those with certain health conditions like pancreatitis, liver failure, kidney disorders, or a history of diabetic ketoacidosis.
It’s also not recommended for individuals seeking quick weight loss without a long-term plan, those with disordered eating patterns, elite athletes, and special populations like children and pregnant or breastfeeding women unless advised by a physician.
For people with Type 2 diabetes, the keto diet might help stabilize blood glucose levels due to reduced carb intake. Yet, individuals with Type 1 diabetes must exercise caution due to the risk of diabetic ketoacidosis.
Common side effects include the “keto flu,” with symptoms such as nausea, hypoglycemia, headache, fatigue, and constipation, which typically subside within a few weeks.
Consulting healthcare professionals is crucial to determine if the keto diet aligns with your health needs and goals.
Most people fail to sustain a diet for effective weight loss because they cannot maintain it for long. A perfect diet should become a way of life for you, not just a chore that you struggle to complete every day.
Unfortunately, we searched for scientific comparisons between diets with long-term data but were unable to find any definitive results.
However, there was a 33% dropout rate during the study duration.
Another study in 2015 found participants losing 26 pounds in only three months with a dropout rate of 50% by the end of the first year. A point to note is that those who stuck with the Ketogenic diet in this study found little weight loss in the nine months after the initial weight loss.
The ketogenic diet can offer benefits like weight loss and improved insulin sensitivity for some, but it’s not universally suitable.
It may pose risks for those with certain health conditions, and side effects like the “keto flu” are common initially. Consultation with healthcare professionals is essential before starting the keto diet to ensure it’s appropriate for your health goals and conditions