Does Keto Work? Is the Diet Right for You?
You've probably seen the buzz around the ketogenic diet, which has gained popularity in recent years. This diet has shown promising results for weight loss, leading many people to adopt it as a lifestyle change. So, what is the ketogenic diet, and why has it become so popular?
This article will explore the keto diet, its benefits, and whether it's right for you. Whether you're a beginner or a keto veteran, read on to learn about the ins and outs of this popular diet.
What Is the Ketogenic Diet?
The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet that has existed since the 1920s.Many people compare it to the Atkins diet, which is a similar diet that is also designed for weight loss. However, the keto diet is the only one that deliberately encourages a state of ketosis.
While both diets are low-carbohydrate and high-fat, the Atkins diet emphasizes higher protein intake and allows for more carbohydrates than the ketogenic diet. The keto is a more restrictive diet and requires a specific ratio of macronutrients to maintain ketosis.
So, how does the ketogenic diet work? Instead of relying on glucose (sugar) from carbohydrates for energy, the body enters ketosis. This metabolic state uses ketones (a type of molecule produced from fat) as its primary energy source, which is believed to have various health benefits.
What Is Ketosis?
Normally, the body uses glucose as its main source of energy. But when limiting carb intake, the body doesn't have enough glucose to fuel itself.
In response, it starts breaking down stored fat into ketone bodies through a process called ketogenesis. That means that instead of the body breaking carbohydrates into glucose to fuel cells, the liver breaks down fats for energy and produces ketone molecules.
On a low-carb diet, the body's primary fuel source shifts from glucose to ketones, which are a more efficient and higher-quality fuel source. Ketone levels in your blood increase as you continue to follow the ketogenic diet, which can indicate that your body is in ketosis.
What Are the Rules of the Keto Diet?
The keto diet is a specific eating plan that goes beyond just counting daily calories. It involves tracking macronutrient targets, such as fat, protein, and carbohydrates, to achieve and maintain a state of ketosis.
If you're thinking of trying the keto diet, understanding the rules and principles of the diet can help ensure you're doing it correctly. In the following section, we'll break down the rules of the keto diet and provide tips on how to follow it successfully.
Increasing fat intake is one of the ketogenic diet's primary rules, and choosing the right kinds of fats is important. Healthy fat sources include avocados, olive oil, and saturated fats from ruminant meats. Contrary to what many people think, saturated fats are generally not bad for you and can have many health benefits.
While monitoring cholesterol levels is essential, not all cholesterol is bad for you. LDL, or "bad" cholesterol, is often a concern, but other types of cholesterol are vital for bodily functions, such as hormone production. When following a keto meal plan, ensure you get enough healthy fats and don't rely on low-fat options.
Dr. Kellyann's Collagen Fiber Bars are a tasty and convenient way to up your fat intake. These bars are made with grass-fed collagen protein and contain 11 grams of total fat, four grams of protein, and three net carbs per bar.
Limiting carb intake is crucial to achieving ketosis, which means cutting out all grains, legumes, and starchy foods. These foods are high in carbs and can easily push you over your daily carb limit. Whole grains and legumes may have health benefits, but their carb content makes them unsuitable for the keto diet.
Instead, try to focus on consuming non-starchy vegetables and leafy greens packed with vitamins and minerals. That way, you can stay within your daily carb limit and remain in ketosis while making every carb count.
Finding great substitutes for your favorite high-carb foods can make cutting carbs easier. Plus, you can still enjoy your favorite foods by making them keto, like these keto protein pancakes made with Dr. Kellyann's Complete Collagen Protein.
For more substitute ideas, look through Dr. Kellyann's keto-friendly collection. This collection can help support your body with essential nutrients while satisfying carb cravings.
Cut Out Sugar
Cutting out sugar is a crucial part of the ketogenic diet, but it can also be the most challenging — especially for those with a sweet tooth. Unfortunately, carbohydrates and sugar can quickly knock you out of ketosis. All carbohydrates, whether from sugars, starches, or fibers, are ultimately converted into glucose by the body.
In addition to cutting out obvious sources of sugar, such as candy and soda, it's important to avoid artificial and highly processed sweeteners. The keto diet allows some sugar in the form of low-sugar fruits, but it's important to keep your carbohydrate intake very low.
Natural sweeteners such as erythritol, allulose, and monk fruit are zero to very low-carb and can be used to sweeten baked goods and beverages. However, even these sweeteners should be used in moderation, as some people may experience stomach upset from consuming them in large quantities.
Fortunately, Dr. Kellyann's keto-friendly products can help you curb your sweet tooth without breaking your diet. Our Collagen Shake Mixes and Smoothie Mixes are perfect for making tasty shakes and smoothies that satisfy your sweet tooth.
Our chocolate and vanilla Bone Broth Protein Powders can also be used in various keto recipes to add flavor and essential nutrients while keeping your carb count low. Incorporating these products into your keto meal plan can help you easily eliminate sugar while still enjoying delicious and satisfying treats.
Building and repairing tissues in the body requires protein. This is why regulating your protein intake is a critical aspect of the keto diet.
However, consuming high protein can disrupt ketosis since the body converts excess amino acids into glucose through gluconeogenesis. This process can increase your blood sugar levels and prevent you from reaching or maintaining a state of ketosis.
While it's important to consume adequate amounts of protein for your body's needs, it's equally important to keep your protein intake moderate to prevent gluconeogenesis from occurring.
Dr. Kellyann's Bone Broth Liquids and Powdered Bone Broths are excellent sources of collagen and protein and come in various delicious flavors. You can add them to stews, soups, and even smoothies to enjoy their rich flavors while still getting your protein.
What Are the Health Benefits of the Keto Diet?
The keto diet has gained lots of attention recently, and many people are curious about its potential health benefits. Several studies suggest that the keto diet may help support specific health markers, such as supporting healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
Now let's go over some potential benefits of the keto diet, including its effects on weight loss, metabolism, and blood sugar control.
Encourages Weight Loss
One way the keto diet may encourage weight loss is by reducing appetite and encouraging satiety. When you consume carbs, your blood sugar levels spike, rapidly increasing insulin levels.
This can cause a "crash" in blood sugar levels, leaving you feeling hungry soon after eating. In contrast, the low-carb, high-fat nature of the keto diet may help support healthy blood sugar levels and help you feel fuller for longer periods.
Switching to using fat for fuel instead of carbs may lead to more fat-burning and weight loss over time. However, it's important to note that individual results may vary and that other factors, such as caloric intake and exercise, also play a role in losing body fat.
Dr. Kellyann's Cleanse and Reset Programs can also be a helpful way to jumpstart your weight loss journey. These programs can help rid the body of toxins and reset the digestive system, making it easier to transition to a ketogenic diet.
Promotes a Healthy Metabolism
Limiting carbohydrate intake forces the body to use stored fat as energy instead of glucose. This process can help encourage healthy insulin sensitivity and blood sugar levels, supporting a healthy metabolism.
Moreover, some studies have suggested that the keto diet may support the body's ability to burn fat for energy, leading to a healthy metabolic rate. This effect may benefit those with insulin resistance, a condition in which the body struggles to regulate blood sugar levels and maintain a healthy weight.
The diet's high-fat content can also help promote feelings of fullness and help you cut back on overall calorie intake. Some people may also incorporate intermittent fasting while following a keto diet because they feel fuller for longer.
Intermittent fasting involves limiting food intake to specific time windows, which may help encourage weight loss.
Supports a Healthy Blood Sugar
The keto diet can also support healthy blood sugar levels by limiting the intake of carbohydrates, which are broken down into glucose and released into the bloodstream. By consuming fewer carbs, the body produces less insulin, the hormone responsible for regulating blood sugar levels.
As we mentioned earlier, the ketogenic diet can also support insulin sensitivity, allowing the body to use the insulin it produces more effectively. This can help prevent spikes and dips in blood sugar levels, which can cause symptoms like brain fog, fatigue, irritability, and nausea.
Who Is a Good Candidate for the Keto Diet?
A keto diet is a good option for people looking to lose weight, manage their blood sugar levels, or support their overall health. It has also been found to have potential benefits for athletes and fitness enthusiasts. This is because the diet promotes fat as a primary fuel source, which can help support endurance and energy levels during exercise.
Athletes and fitness enthusiasts who follow a keto diet may find they can train harder and longer with less fatigue, leading to high performance and good results. However, transitioning to a keto diet can take time and may require adjustments to your training routines.
So be sure to plan some rest time from workouts when beginning a restrictive diet such as the keto diet to help minimize side effects like keto-flu.
Who Should Avoid the Keto Diet?
While the keto diet can be an excellent option for many people, it may not suit everyone. Before starting the diet, it's essential to consult with a healthcare professional, such as a physician, registered dietician, or nutritionist, especially if you have any preexisting health conditions or concerns.
Those who have had their gallbladder removed may have difficulty tolerating a high-fat diet. However, with proper medical supervision and a lower-fat version, they may still be able to follow a modified keto diet.
While the diet can be safe for pregnant women, ensuring proper nutrient intake for both the mother and the developing fetus is essential. Women with gestational diabetes, for example, may benefit from a keto diet to help manage their blood sugar levels.
If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, you may want to consult your healthcare provider, registered dietitian, or nutritionist before starting the keto diet.
The Bottom Line
If you're interested in experiencing the potential health benefits of the ketogenic diet, taking a gradual approach can be key to success. Luckily, cutting out carbs doesn’t always mean cutting out delicious treats. Dr. Kellyann's products can help you satisfy your sweet tooth without interrupting ketosis.
We also have a wide library of recipes that you can use to enjoy your favorite comfort foods while still eating keto. Whether you’re just starting keto or simply looking for some support, we’re here to help you every step of the way.
Ketogenic Diet | National Library of Medicine
Ketosis, Ketogenic Diet and Food Intake Control: A Complex Relationship | National Library of Medicine
The Potential Health Benefits of the Ketogenic Diet: A Narrative Review | MDPI
Impact of Ketogenic Diet On Athletes: Current Insights | National Library of Medicine