Our trainers and nutrition specialists at All Inclusive Health have been hearing a lot lately about the Ketogenic Diet, or Keto Diet for short. There is tons of information available online, and consequently, there are a lot of misconceptions about the Keto Diet. Although this diet has demonstrated immense health benefits for some, you have to educate yourself on the Keto Diet before adopting it yourself.
Why People Want To Go On The Keto Diet
The Ketogenic Diet is based on the concept that depriving your body of your glucose, the brain’s main source of energy, your liver will begin to produce ketones for the brain to use instead. When your liver produces ketones, your body is in a state of “ketosis.” In ketosis, your cells use ketones to burn your fat reserves for energy until you return to eating carbohydrates. This process typically begins after a few days of consuming very little carbohydrates, less than 20 gm carb per day. Therefore, the keto diet is high in proteins, in fats, and restricts carbohydrate intake. The Keto Diet requires reading a lot of nutrition labels and learning to prepare foods with little to no carbohydrates.
What You Can Eat On the Keto Diet
Carbohydrates are your cells’ preferred method of energy, and it makes sense that your cells would want to use the most available form of energy as its preference However, there are many delicious and widely available foods you can eat while following this diet.
In order to make the Keto Diet work, you must eat a diet that is both rich in protein and balanced with vegetables and healthy fats. Some Keto Diet favorites are organic meats, nuts, full-fat dairy items, and lots of vegetables. You must avoid sugars, grains, and even fruit. For inspiration, check out some recipes online.
Keto Diet: Quick Facts & Precautions
The concept of eating a high fat diet that restricts carbohydrates sounds simple enough, but there are a lot of misconceptions about the diet. Here are a few quick facts about the Keto Diet to consider:
- It is not recommended to consume an excessive amount of fat: Although the keto diet is high in fats, it does not encourage you to eat a jar of mayonnaise. What it means is that dieters should deprive their body of glucose so that their bodies burn up their natural fat stores. In order to make this work, a dieter must eat a diet that is rich in protein, vegetables, and healthy fats. A balanced Keto Diet meal would be something like a plate that’s half-filled with a kale salad and served alongside steak and half an avocado.
- Keto is not sustainable in the long-term: Your brain is designed to burn glucose for energy, and when you send your body into the state of ketosis, glucose stores are depleted. It is a more strenuous process on the body to use protein for primary energy source, takes approximately 400-600 kcal/day to make glucose for the body. In the short-term, you are likely to see weight loss & possibly increased insulin sensitivity. However, in the long-term, you may increase your risks for medical issues. It is advised to consult with your physician to have a full blood work panel done (kidney, liver, lipid levels) before starting or continuing Keto diet for >2 weeks. More research is needed to say for certain what the long term effects of this diet are on bone density/health, kidney function, as well as vitamin deficiency.
- Exercising while on the Keto Diet: You may find, especially in the first few weeks, that exercising is additionally difficult while on this diet plan. You may feel dizzy, fatigued, and/or constipated.
- The Keto Diet does not direct you to consume an abnormal amount of protein: Depending on your activity level, you may consume 1-1.5 gm of protein per Kg of your body weight (Kg = wt in lbs/2.2). You may not need to supplement with shakes or bars to follow this diet though you should track and measure your intake when making such a drastic change in nutrition regimen.
Keto Diet Plan In New Orleans
If you are interested in a nutrition plan, our experts at All Inclusive Health in New Orleans can help. We can design a nutrition plan that will fit your needs, and can answer questions you may have on the Keto Diet. Contact All Inclusive Health today or call at (504) 715 – 0397.