Ketogenic diet is a way of eating that has recently become very popular. It can be used both in the fight against excess weight, as well as to treat various diseases, such as diabetes and hypertension. What is the keto diet? What are its advantages and disadvantages?
What exactly is the ketogenic diet? Its main idea is to increase the supply of fats while reducing the intake of carbohydrates. To be effective, and most importantly – completely safe, it must be carried out under the supervision of a doctor and nutritionist.
The keto diet consists of consuming an appropriate amount of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. In a standard diet their percentage is 50%, 15% and 35% respectively. It looks completely different in the case of ketogenic diet. In this type of diet as much as 80-90% of meals should be fats, and 10-20% – protein and carbohydrates.
In the course of the keto diet comes to the so-called ketosis, the breakdown of fats. As a result, the concentration of ketone bodies in the blood is much higher than glucose. Thanks to the low amount of carbohydrates, we have to deal with the suppression of hunger.
Why do so many people decide to go on a ketogenic diet? Its main advantage is that for about 2-3 months of its use, you can feel light and have plenty of energy. The mood also improves. It is also impossible not to mention here the dynamic weight loss. As in keto diet the use of glucose as an energy source is reduced, it is used by the nervous system. We are then dealing with a decrease in the amount of glycogen, which makes the amount of water in the muscles decrease.
The ketogenic diet works very well for people suffering from epilepsy, especially for children with drug-resistant epilepsy. This type of diet can also be successfully used for diseases such as tuberous sclerosis, Doose syndrome, Dravet syndrome or Rett syndrome. The keto diet is also able to effectively support the fight against insulin resistance. It regulates insulin secretion, guarantees a feeling of satiety for a long time, reduces cravings for sweets and gets rid of various types of digestive disorders.
What disadvantages does the ketogenic diet have? It has quite a few side effects. Although you may initially notice an improvement in your mood and energy, after about 2-3 months, these positive effects gradually start to fade away. Instead, there are problems with digestion and concentration, increased appetite for sweets and unpleasant body odor.
A very large amount of fats in the diet can also lead to dysregulation of intestinal peristalsis and unpleasant pain in the lower abdomen. People on a ketogenic diet also often suffer from urolithiasis, elevated uric acid levels, and frequent urination. This type of diet should not be used by people suffering from pancreatic, liver and kidney diseases, as well as those burdened with ketone body metabolism. Moreover, the ketogenic diet can negatively affect the hormonal balance.
The ketogenic diet requires the use of proper proportions of fats, carbohydrates, and fat. The key issue here is to eat high quality ingredients. They should contain a high amount of fats and be as little processed as possible. You should choose saturated fats, such as coconut oil or butter, and monounsaturated fats, which include avocados and nuts. You can also choose polyunsaturated fats from fatty fish such as salmon or mackerel. Protein in the keto diet should come from meat, and carbohydrates should come from fruits and vegetables.