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The ketogenic diet has been rising in popularity for its instant cure for losing weight and for helping with chronic illnesses.
Not only that, but the diet made it on the ‘2018 lists of best diets’ from US News and World Report.
Many people have tried the keto diet and come to one conclusion: It truly works wonders.
In this blog post, I’ll share some insights into the ketogenic diet and how you can begin today.
What is the Ketogenic Diet?
The ketogenic diet is a diet that is LOW in carbohydrate and HIGH in fat. It’s expected that you take a moderate amount of food rich in protein while on this diet.
- High in Fat
- Moderate in Protein
- Low in Carbohydrate
Other diets will tell you to take high in carbohydrate because our body naturally burns carbohydrate as a form of energy in order to function.
But here is the problem, if you’re taking in less carbohydrate, where will you get your energy from?
While on the keto diet, FATS will be your primary source of energy.
Why replace Carbohydrate with fat?
When you consume a ton of carbs from highly processed foods such as pasta and don’t it’s converted to glucose. When glucose is released into your blood streams it leads to weight gains. Glucose can also be bad for the body as it can lead to diabetics in the long run if not monitor.
Cut long story short…
- Carbohydrate eaten = Carbohydrate used (energy) then you MAINTAINED WEIGHT
- Carbohydrate eaten > Carbohydrate used then WEIGHT GAIN
- Carbohydrate eaten < Carbohydrate used then WEIGHT LOSS.
This is the similar principle with the keto diet.
When you replace carbohydraye with fat it produce a chemical called ketones.
Before I go any further, you might be saying that fat is unhealthy so why choose it over carbs. There’s a difference between healthy and unhealthy fats.
The type of fat you’ll be consuming would be healthy fats. Some examples of fats that you should avoid is trans fat or hydrogenated oil.
With that said, let’s move on…
The type of Ketogenic Diet that I reccommend is the Standard Ketogenic Diet (SKD) which consist of 75% fat, 20% proteins, and 5% carbs. To make things more clear, your net carbohydrate should be between 20 – 30 grams each day.
* Net Carbs = Total Carbs – Fiber
This is when carbohydrate intake is strictly limited in your body. And when the amount of glucose in your body can’t meet your body’s need for energy then it turns to another energy source called fat.
Related: How to Enter Ketosis Quickly
By reducing carbs in your body, your insulin levels decreases and your body is able to access fatty acids. Then the fatty acids are translated into ‘ketones’ which are an alternative fuel source for your body.
The Benefits of the Ketogenic Diet :
1.Manages Blood Sugar
When insulin fails to regulate the levels of blood sugar it then leads to Type II diabetes. In other words, Insulin resistance occurs when insulin fails to function properly.
The Keto diet will help in relieving the risk of Type II diabetes.
2. Treat Brain Disorders
Research has shown that the ketogenic diet has been you used long ago to cure epilepsy in children who failed to respond to medication.
To function properly your brain used carbohydrate or the alternative ‘ketones’.
You’ll completely forget that you’re on the keto diet.
You won’t feel like you’re starving yourself and finding yourself counting how much time left back for your next meal. The high content of fat makes sure you’re feeling full and satisfied.
Losing weight and feeling full is quite fun to me.
If you’re wondering why you don’t feel hungry on the keto diet, here goes:
Fats take longer to digest as opposed to carbohydrates. So taking in those Carbs cause you to end up feeling hungry often.
4.Skyrocket your Energy Level
It’s not worth it to be on a diet for days and feeling fatigue. The keto diet erases tiredness that in turn enhance your productivity.
According to theories, when the amount of carbs intake is lessen then your insulin has a far better chance of being level without experiencing spikes (better maintained) which leads to you feeling more energized.
That’s why after eating a meal that is mainly carbohydrates (for example noddles), your insulin level spikes and then goes down shortly. This causes you to be hungry in the next 2 to 4 hours of eating your last meal.
And you know what next?
You’re going to find something to eat and you’ll continue in a cycle.
5. Glow Skin
Everyone hates those spots that name acne…
We all want our skin to glow and look beautiful. But how?
The keto diet might be a great help to you. When you consume a large amount of carbohydrate, it can damage your skin.
Bet you didn’t know that.
So when you begin your ketogenic diet, it will automatically help with cleansing that skin of yours. This includes reducing different skin problems (inflammation) and gives you an even tone.
When your levels of sugar (carbs) is high then it can have a bad impact on your eyesight. This can increase your risk of cataracts.
By following the keto diet, which has little or no sugar, your risk will be reduced.
7. Enhance Mental Health
Ketones are the essential source of energy for the brain. This help strengthened your mental focus and our brain’s capacity to perform well.
Wait, Is the ketogenic diet Healthy?
This is where the debate comes in about the keto diet. Isn’t Carbohydrate essential to our body? Are low carb diets safe?
So here goes…
Carbs are nonessential nutrients that our body does NOT need.
Nonessential nutrients are nutrients manufactured by the body that you do not need to get from food.
Some essential nutrients include fat, proteins, water, minerals and vitamins. Carbs are eliminated because it does not provide any nutritional benefit to the human body – not even one.
Carbohydrates are the reason why your blood sugar spikes. And these spike is the number one reason for unwanted body fat.
Yes, glucose is the default fuel for energy but it might not be the best. It’s said that our brain functions better when using ketones (fat).
Who should not be on this diet?
This diet is good but maybe not for everyone. Depending on your condition.
If you insist to go with the keto diet after the listing then talk to your doctor. You might need to get a custom-made keto diet plan for yourself so don’t follow everyone word as advice.
- Abnormal Kidney Function
- Gallbladder Fat
- The Inability to digest fat
- Carnitine Deficiency
- Poor nutritional Status (the inability to absorb nutrients)
If these do not go for you. Then Yaaay! Let’s move on to how can get started immediately.
How to Get Started on the Keto Diet?
1. A Cupboard makeover
This might be a hard step for many but it’s the most important. If you really want to make a positive impact on your health then you need to get rid of all temptation.
“Hell no, when I get off this diet, I’ll need this food.”
Related: 7 Day Meal Plan Keto Diet
You might be saying this and I completely understand if you’re not living alone. So to combat temptation then you need to put it somewhere else out of your eyesight. In order to complete this journey, you need to get rid of all temptation in the form of food.
If you live alone and chose to get rid of the food that you’ll not be using on your diet then you give it away to someone.
That way you’ll not feel you’ve wasted your food.
Some of the food that you need to empty your cupboard of include:
- Flour or product that has flour
- Dried Fruits
- Milk or Cheese (If you’re on the Dairy-free Keto Diet)
- Corn & Corn Products
- Processed Food ( You don’t know the ingredients involved hence it better to stay away)
- Tropical Fruits or Fruits Juices such as mangoes, pineapples, papaya, bananas (Why? They are high in sugar
- Candies ( High in Sugar)
- Alcohol (Has no form of nutrition and stresses the liver)
- Maple Syrup
2. Healthy Restock
Now, since you have empty your cupboard lets look into the healthier option for this ketogenic diet.
Thankfully, the food involved is quite delightful and tasty and will keep your tummy full.
Below is a list of foods that you can eat while on the ketogenic diet. It might not be everything but these are great options for losing weight quickly.
So here goes:
- Herbal teas
- Nuts & Seeds (Pumpkin Seeds, Flax Seeds, Almonds, Sesame Seeds, Pecan, etc)
- ‘Low Carb’ Vegetables (tomatoes, peppers, onion, spinach, bamboo shoots, cucumber etc.) *Avoid vegetables that are starchy*
- Lemon or Lime
- Coconut milk
- Healthy Oils (extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil etc.)
- Cream ( If not on the Dairy-free keto diet)
- Meat and Fish ( All types.)
*Ensure that your meats are grass-fed, organic poultry and no farmed salmon.
4. Tools For Making Keto Meals
Preparing doesn’t need to be over complicated and spending long hours in the kitchen. It can be simple, quick and fun.
In a rush?
No need to worry:
Once you are equipped with the right tool then meal preparation will be less stressing and time-consuming.
Here are some awesome tools:
- Veggie Chopper or Food Chopper
A Food chopper is an important tool while you’re on the keto diet. Besides, you have a lot of chopping to do which can be time-consuming on this diet.
JUST in one minute or less, you can chop up your spices, nuts, herbs, boneless meats, vegetable, and fruits.
This might become your go-to equipment for quick meals.
2. Salad Spinner
If you don’t have a lot of keto recipes, a salad spinner might be your best friend. There’s a ton of recipes on making keto salad, you’ll never run out of ideas.
A salad spinner can also be your best friend since it’s quick. If you’re salad lover like myself then this will be a great investment.
A Kitchen Scale is important in tracking what you eat. If you’re serious about losing weight then you must set a weight loss goal and a kitchen scale will help you to achieve that goal.
If you’re confused about how much macros you must consume then you can check out this free online keto calculator or MyFitnessPal to ensure precise calculations to keep you on track.
Important Point When On The Keto Diet
- Fat is 9 calories per gram – For example: 10g * 9 = 90 Calories
- Protein is 4 calories per gram
- Carbohydrate is 4 calories per gram
- Get a diet plan
- Drink plenty of water
The keto diet is one of the best diets to lose weight and with some of the tastiest meals. The one advice I would give is to pay attention to your macros so that you can reap the benefits.
If you’re looking for a way to stay healthy while dropping some pounds then the keto diet might be a good fit for you.
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Thanks for reading 🙂