Losing weight can be a never-ending battle for a lot of us. Therefore, we turn to all sort of new diets and plans to help with weight loss. If you were thinking of trying a keto diet as a quick solution, you also should be aware of why a keto diet could be both risky and helpful.
How a keto diet is meant to work is eating more fats and protein while cutting out most of your carbohydrates to change your body’s chemistry in how it utilizes energy. To put it simply, a keto diet puts your body in ketosis, using the liver’s ketones instead of glucose from carbohydrates as its energy source to fuel itself. What happens during ketogenesis is the body is also burning stored fat to keep itself going. This sounds great for weight loss, but there is a catch.
To start that process in your liver, you can’t have more than 50 grams of carbohydrate a day. Let me break it down for you with a few examples. A small glass of your morning orange juice probably has about 60 grams. A slice of white bread has 50 grams or more so you are done with carbs for the day. If your normal morning cereal is a bowl of cornflakes, then one cup has 24 grams of carbohydrates, nearly half of what you’re allowed for the day if you hope to achieve that state of ketogenesis.
Basically, you need to stay away from grains, sugars, fruits, potatoes, legumes, alcohol and anything labeled “low-cal” types of food packages. The reason to steer clear of them is because when the manufacturers take the fat out carbohydrates are typical replacements.
Keto-friendly foods are turning to more proteins from meats, healthy oils such as olive oil and coconut oils, hard cheese, butter, unprocessed cheeses like cheddar, cream cheese or mozzarella, nuts and seeds, avocados, and leafy green vegetables like spinach and kale, etc.
If you stick to maintaining that set carbohydrate range in going keto, the body’s metabolism takes about two days for your liver to start breaking down the fat. The longer that you keep true to your keto diet, the more pounds drop off. What else is interesting is eating this way also is a help in lowering cholesterol and serves to improve cardiovascular health to blood sugar levels for those with Type 2 diabetes. Furthermore, there is growing evidence that due to how the ketones affect the brain and its neurons with its anti-inflammatory effect that even Type 1 diabetes may be helped as well as migraine headaches, hyperactivity, dementia, epilepsy, and other neurological disorders.
At the same time, a keto diet can be both risky and helpful. After all, there is a period of the body’s adjustment to processing food in this manner that should be considered. It can present problems for certain individuals such as feeling drained of energy, constipation, confusion, increased heart rate or headache usually from too much acid in the blood for otherwise healthy people. This could be temporary until your body gets used to this new keto way of eating. However, you could also suffer from muscle loss. Another risk to a keto diet is you can often get tired of denying yourself carbs until you get to the point of overeating foods you missed such as desserts or pasta and regain even more weight.
The best approach to going on a keto diet is trying it for a few weeks. This will speed up your weight loss and set you on the right path for healthier eating. If you don’t want to fall into that trap of feeling deprived of your favorite foods, then a Mediterranean style diet with lots of olive oil, vegetables, whole grains, fruits, beans, and nuts with fish meals twice a week while eating eggs, poultry and dairy moderately while curbing back on the red meat and sugars is a safer option.
This post is not intended to diagnose, only your physician can do that. It is just some advice on why a keto diet is both risky as well as helpful for you to think about.