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What Is The Keto Diet?

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What Is The Keto Diet?




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  • “Ketogenic” is a term for a Low-Carb diet like the Atkins diet the idea is for you to get more calories from protein and fat and less from carbohydrates you cut back most on the carbs that are easy to digest, like sugar, soda, pastries and white bread.

    How It Works




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    When you eat less than 50 grams of carbs a day your body eventually runs out of fuel blood sugar it can use quickly. This typically takes three to four days. Then you will start to break down protein and fat for energy which can make you lose weight this is called Ketosis it's important to note that the Ketogenic diet is a short term diet that's focussed on weight loss rather than the pursuit of health benefits. 

    Who Uses It?




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    People use a Ketogenic diet most often to lose weight, but it can help manage certain medical conditions like epilepsy too it also may help people with heart disease, certain brain diseases and even acne but there needs to be more research in those areas talk with your doctor first to find out if it’s safe for you to try a Ketogenic diet, especially if you have type 1 diabetes.

    Weight Loss




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    A Ketogenic diet may help you lose more weight in the first 3 to 6 months than some other diets. This may be because it takes more calories to change fat into energy than it does to change carbs into energy it’s also possible that a high-fat, high-protein diet satisfies you more so you eat less but that hasn’t been proved yet.

    Cancer




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    Insulin is a hormone that lets your body use or store sugar as fuel Ketogenic diets make you burn through this fuel quickly so you don’t need to store it this means your body needs and makes less insulin those lower levels may help protect you against some kinds of cancer or even slow the growth of cancer cells. 

    Heart Disease




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    It seems strange that a diet that calls for more fat can raise “good” cholesterol and lower “bad” cholesterol but Ketogenic diets are linked to just that. It may be because the lower levels of insulin that result from these diets can stop your body from making more cholesterol that means you are less likely to have high blood pressure, hardened arteries, heart failure and other heart conditions it's unclear however how long these effects last.

    Acne



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    Carbohydrates have been linked to this skin condition, so cutting down on them may help and the drop in insulin that a Ketogenic diet can trigger may also help stop acne breakouts Insulin can cause your body to make other hormones that bring on outbreaks. Still more research is needed to determine exactly how much effect if any the diet actually has on acne. 

    Diabetes




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    Low-Carb diets seem to help keep your blood sugar lower and more predictable than other diets but when your body burns fat for energy it makes compounds called Ketones if you have diabetes, particularly type 1 too many Ketones in your blood can make you sick so it’s very important to work with your doctor on any changes in your diet.

    Epilepsy



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    Ketogenic diets have helped control seizures caused by this condition since the 1920s. But again it’s important to work with your doctor to figure out what’s right for you or your child. 

    Other Nervous System Disorders




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    These affect your brain and spine, as well as the nerves that link them together. Epilepsy is one but others might be helped by a Ketogenic diet as well, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and sleep disorders. Scientists aren’t sure why, but it might be that the Ketones your body makes when it breaks down fat for energy help protect your brain cells from damage.

    Polycystic Ovary Syndrome



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    This is when a woman’s ovaries get larger than they should be and small fluid-filled sacs form around the eggs. High levels of insulin can cause it Ketogenic diets which lower both the amount of insulin you make and the amount you need, may help treat it along with other lifestyle changes like exercise and weight loss.

    Exercise




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    A Ketogenic diet may help endurance athletes runners and cyclists for example when they train. Over time it helps your muscle-to-fat ratio and raises the amount of oxygen your body is able to use when it’s working hard but while it might help in training it might not work as well as other diets for peak performance.

    Side Effects



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    The more common ones aren’t usually serious: You may have constipation, mild low blood sugar or indigestion. Much less often Low-Carb diets can lead to kidney stones or high levels of acid in your body (acidosis). Other side effects can include the "Keto Flu," which might include headache, weakness, and irritability; bad breath and fatugue.

    Diet With Care




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    When your body burns its stores of fat, it can be hard on your kidneys and starting a Ketogenic diet or going back to a normal diet afterward can be tricky if you are obese because of other health issues you’re likely to have, like diabetes a heart condition or high blood pressure if you have any of these conditions make diet changes slowly and only with the guidance of your doctor.


    Before You Go: 7 Dangers of Going Keto

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