The Ketogenic Diet

There have long been debates about the benefits of keto diet and about how much weight one can lose while restricting himself to this special course of food.

This is perhaps one of the most debated topics among those think that a right diet is essential for obesity control and weight management.

Keto foods; image source:

The ketogenic diet is a unique approach with respect to nutrition habits that is used for cancer, epilepsy, diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease prevention and their subsequent treatment. Also ketogenic diet allows you to increase female fertility.

“Using a ketogenic diet to improve body weight can definitely help women who do not ovulate — release an egg — regularly, including those with polycystic ovary syndrome [PCOS],” explains Rashmi Kudesia, MD, a reproductive endocrinologist and infertility specialist at Houston IVF, a CCRM Network Clinic in Texas. Therefore, this is not a completely new way to quickly and effectively adjust your diet in order to improve the overall health conditions provided you follow a competent advice of a professional nutritionist. The main feature of the ketogenic diet is the elimination of carbohydrates while focusing on the increasing consumption of fats and proteins in the daily life. When the body understands that carbohydrates as the main source of energy are depleted, it starts using its fat reserves; those most of us try to get rid of while exhausting themselves in the gym or keeping the feedings along with by strict diets.

About ketogenic diet

A large amount of protein reduces appetite, the feeling of hunger is dulled, which means that the chances of losing weight increase. The ketogenic diet implies critically low carbohydrate consumption and high level of fat consuming. This makes the keto diet look like the Atkins diet. This type of nutrition introduces the body into a state of ketosis. When this happens, the body uses its own fat for energy. The ketogenic diet causes a steady decline in blood sugar and insulin levels and helps to keep them in a normal range. Together with the increased amount of ketones, it has a positive effect on health.

The ketogenic diet is an effective method of losing weight and a way to alleviate the course of certain diseases. According to the research results, people on a ketogenic diet lose 2.2 times more weight than on a low-fat diet. The ketogenic diet is so saturated that you can lose weight without counting calories, controlling your weight and volume of meal portions.

While a person is on keto diet, the level of sugar in the blood decreases and insulin sensitivity increases. This can help people in a pre-diabetic condition or those with type 2 diabetes to overcome the ailment. The ketogenic diet is not only limited to this positive effect on the health conditions. Keto diet actually originated as a remedy for the treatment of neurological diseases such as epilepsy. Studies have shown that the diet can be used in the complex treatment of a wide range of different diseases.

The ketogenic diet contributes to heart disease treatment, weight loss, cholesterol level reduction, decrease in blood pressure. Keto ration can ease the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and slow down its progression. Studies have shown that the ketogenic diet can reduce the number of seizures in children suffering from epilepsy and drastically decrease the insulin levels that trigger polycystic ovary syndrome.

Low-carb, high-fat diet

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The ketogenic diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet. This method of nutrition lowers the level of sugar and insulin in the blood and alters the metabolism (from carbohydrates to fats and to ketones). At the same time, the use of low-carbohydrate food does not imply the use of tasteless diet food at all, because fat gives the favorite dishes a special taste, and there are no severe restrictions. Keto-nutrition contributes to the fact that hunger is regulated naturally, which makes it very easy for a person to continue following his food preferences and eating habits without altering them. This allows you to quickly lose weight, and when you reach the ideal weight – to keep it this way for a long period of time.

Adherents of keto diet do not count calories in grams; they practically do not limit themselves in the selection of products and the number of meals per day. At the same time, insulin and sugar levels decrease in the blood. The liver during the keto diet begins to produce ketone bodies (a form of acetone). These chemical compounds move around the body and due to the bloodstream affect the oxidation of fatty acids.

There are several types of ketogenic diets:

  • Standard ketogenic diet is the most popular one. When choosing recipes, it is important to observe the ratio – low carbohydrate content (5%), moderate amount of proteins (20%) and rather high fat content (75%).
  • Target ketogenic diet is the same classic variation of nutrition, where a small     amount of carbohydrates is allowed before physical exercise.
  • Cyclic ketogenic diet implies short periods of excessive carbohydrate consumption to     replenish glycogen operational reserve. This type of diet is often     used by athletes before competitions.

Common characteristics of the Ketogenic diet include the following products:

  • Red meat, chicken and turkey, meat products, such as sausage, bacon or ham.
  • Fishery products: salmon, trout, tuna and mackerel.
  • Eggs.
  • Butter, cream and dairy-based cheeses.
  • Low-carb vegetables: leafy green vegetables, tomatoes, onions, bell peppers.
  • Mushrooms and avocados.
  • Hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds and seeds of flax, pumpkins and others.
  • Olive, coconut oil, and avocado oil.

The main condition for the effective ketone diet is that the carbohydrate content of food should not exceed 50 grams per day.

However, the diet is not suitable for adolescent girls, pregnant and lactating women, as water and mineral balance may be disturbed. Thoughtless following the keto diet can lead to the harmful cholesterol level and problems with the gastrointestinal tract.

Revision 2.5.2020 – dead link removed


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