The keto diet (also called a low-carb diet), during which the body produces ketones in the liver and uses them as energy. It is called by many different names: ketogenic or ketone diet, low carbohydrate diet, low sugar diet.
Eating something saturated with carbohydrates your body will produce glucose and insulin.
- Glucose is the simplest molecule in your body that is converted and used as energy, so it will take precedence over any other energy source.
- Insulin is produced to process glucose in the blood.
On a usual diet with higher carbohydrate content, the body uses glucose as its main source of energy. Fats are not used in any way, so they are deposited on our body. By reducing carbohydrate intake, the body is induced into a condition known as ketosis.
Ketosis is a natural process that helps our body survive during hunger. In this state, we produce ketones. Ketones are formed when fats fission in the liver. The main goal of the keto diet is to force the body to enter a metabolic state. However, this is achieved not by reducing calories, but by reducing carbohydrates.
Benefits of the keto diet
- It helps with weight loss. A ketogenic diet uses your fat as an energy source, so the benefits of weight loss are obvious. Research only confirms this.
- May protect brain functioning. Some studies suggest that the keto diet offers neuroprotective benefits. These may help treat or prevent conditions like Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and even some sleep disorders.
- It helps to get rid of acne. A large part of skin problems is due to a large number of fast carbohydrates. Keto diet avoids carbohydrates, so it helps to get rid of acne.
- The liver gets healthier. The research also showed positive improvement in the liver.
- Decreases craving for sweets. Controlling your blood sugar levels helps you control your cravings.
What should I eat during a keto diet?
To start a keto diet, you need to plan everything in advance. This means you must have a viable diet plan ready. The more restrictions (less than 15 grams of carbohydrates per day), the faster you will enter a state of ketosis.
Basically, you should eat vegetables, nuts, and dairy products. Do not eat refined carbohydrates such as wheat (bread, pasta, cereals), starch (potatoes, beans, legumes), or fruit.
What should be avoided?
If very briefly:
- Sugar: first of all. Sweets, sweet drinks, fruit juices, energy, white and milk chocolate, pastries, confectionery, ice cream, cereals, muesli.
- Starch: bread, pastries, any pasta, potatoes, chips and snacks, whole grain products.
- Margarine and most vegetable oils. The reason is the presence of harmful transfats in the composition.
- Beer, tinctures and sweet liqueurs.
- Fruits and dried fruits: now fruits contain a lot of sugar, so try to eat them as little as possible.
What should be included?
- Meat: any to your taste. Veal, pork, poultry, etc. do not throw away pieces of fat from meat and skin from poultry.
- Fish and seafood: any, but the best option is fatty fish such as salmon and herring. Shrimp and squid are also good.
- Eggs: in any form.
- Natural fats: ghee, coconut oil, avocado oil, Flaxseed oil and olive oil for salads. Choose only unrefined oils of the first cold pressing.
- Vegetables: all kinds of salads and cabbage, asparagus, zucchini, olives, spinach, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, green onions, greens.
- Mushrooms: any edible:)
- Dairy products: always choose whole milk (more than 3% fat), heavy cream (20-40%), fat sour cream, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, fat hard cheeses. Be careful with flavored foods with additives and with a low percentage of fat, mostly they contain a lot of sugar.
- Nuts and seeds: macadamia, walnuts, sunflower seeds.
- Berries: in small quantities. Suitable raspberries, blackberries and other berries with a low glycemic index.
Can be sometimes
- Alcohol: dry wines, unsweetened spirits (gin, rum, whiskey, vodka), unsweetened cocktails.
- Dark chocolate: in very moderate amounts, with a cocoa content of more than 70%.
What can I drink
- Clean water.
- Natural coffee, especially with cream.
- Tea and herbal decoctions to your taste.
- Try to remember that the keto diet is high in fat, moderate in protein and very low in carbohydrates. Nutrient intake should be approximately 70% fat, 25% protein, and 5% carbohydrates.
- Generally, somewhere between 20-30g of pure carbohydrates is recommended for a daily diet but the lower you keep your carbohydrate intake and glucose levels, the better the overall results will be.
- Protein should always be consumed as needed, usually towards the end of the day.
- If you feel hungry during the day, you can snack on nuts, seeds, cheese or peanut butter to curb your appetite.
- It is best to start with a ready menu for the keto diet.
How to achieve ketosis
There is so much information in this article that you may think that the keto diet is difficult, but I assure you that it is not. The more you know, the faster and better the results will be.
Here’s what you need to do, by levels of importance:
- Limit your carbs. Try to stay below 20g carbs.
- Limit your protein intake. Many people come to keto from the Atkins diet and don’t limit their protein. Too much protein can lead to lower levels of ketosis. For weight loss is between 0.6 g and 0.8 g of protein per pound of body weight.
- Stop worrying about fat. During a ketogenic diet, fat is the main source of energy so make sure you feed your body enough. Being on a keto diet, you do not lose weight due to hunger.
- Drink water. The amount of water depends on the weight of the person. Calculate 75 percent of your weight, then aim to drink that many ounces of water per day. (For example, if you weigh 120 pounds, you should drink at least 90 ounces of water.)
- Stop snacking. Weight loss accelerates when you have fewer insulin spikes throughout the day. Unnecessary snacks can cause weight loss to stop or slow down.
- Add exercises. If you want to make the most of the benefits of a ketogenic diet, then add 20-30 minutes of simple exercise per day(Or go to the gym). Even a small walk can help regulate weight loss and blood sugar levels.
How to know have you reached ketosis?
You can measure whether you have entered a ketotic state by using special urine or blood test strips. Instead, you can use this short list of physical symptoms that usually tell you if you’re on the right path.
- Increased urination. Keto is a natural diuretic, so you need to go to the toilet more. During urination, acetoacetate is excreted from the body, so it is normal for the keto diet.
- Dry mouth. Increased urination leads to dry mouth and increased thirst. Make sure you drink plenty of water and replenish electrolytes (salt, potassium, magnesium).
- Bad breath. This is due to an increase in the amount of acetone in your body. It can smell like overripe fruit or like a nail polish remover.
- Reducing hunger and increase energy. After a period of adaptation, you will experience a much lower level of hunger and a clear or tense mental state.