Imagine: you eat cheese, bacon, rape coffee and whole milk every day. No more skinless chicken breasts. Now you have juicy pork on your plate and you don't feel the slightest remorse. Your body works like a powerful machine that burns fat. You are losing weight and it is not only you who see it. That may sound unrealistic. But this is how the ketogenic diet works. What is its essence?
This is keto!
The keto diet is all about cutting carbohydrates sharply, cutting protein wisely, and eating lots of fatty foods. It seems that losing weight is impossible with this regimen. However, this is not the case.
With a normal diet, the body gets the energy it needs for life from carbohydrates. When you eat fewer carbohydrates, our bodies begin to break down proteins from food into carbohydrates. When you reduce your protein intake, the body has no choice but to use its own proteins - from skeletal muscles, for example. For this reason, strict diets not only lose fat, but also muscle mass.
But besides carbohydrates there is another source of energy - fats. With a high intake of fats from food with a simultaneous lack of carbohydrates, the body enters the so-called ketosis state. Ketosis is a metabolic state. This breaks down fats into ketones or ketone bodies - an energy source for our body. At the same time, the body learns to use its own fats. And according to the data, this happens more efficiently than, for example, on a low-carbohydrate, high-protein diet.
Is ketosis safe?
Ketosis occurs after three to four days on a keto diet. This is the body's natural state on a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet. For some peoples, for example the Eskimos and Kalmyks, whose main menu consists of fatty meat, ketosis is a permanent condition. This metabolic effect also occurs during fasting. But is it safe?
Medicine against epilepsy and diabetes
The keto diet has been around since 1920. It was originally developed to treat epilepsy. Nowadays it is successfully used to shed extra pounds and to treat type 2 diabetes as keto significantly lowers blood sugar levels. However, don't confuse ketosis with ketoacidosis, a serious complication of diabetes.
While the keto diet has been around for a long time, the long-term health effects of ketosis are currently not well understood. Therefore, the keto diet should not be used as a long-term diet. It is not recommended to practice keto for more than three consecutive months.
Do's and Don'ts
The benefit of the keto diet is that you don't have to count calories and suffer for every bite you accidentally eat. You won't be hungry for keto.
Experts recommend consuming no more than 20-30 grams of carbohydrates per day. In this case, protein should be eaten around 1-1, 5 grams per kilogram of your body weight. If you are significantly overweight, reduce this number by a third.
In other words, with classic keto, roughly 75% of your calories should be fat, 20% protein, and only 5% carbohydrates.
With a ketogenic diet, you have to rethink your eating habits significantly - for example, giving up bread. Any unplanned carbohydrate intake leads to ketosis, which means you have to start over.
The ketogenic diet should be started gradually to reduce carbohydrates and increase the fat in the diet. In order to get the body used to the new regime, Mancinelli advises to consistently incorporate new habits into the diet. For example, in a café, instead of the usual burger, you should order a meat chop on lettuce leaves and use green vegetables instead of potatoes.
Your diet could look like this:
Breakfast - omelette with bacon and vegetables
Lunch - Chicken and Avocado Salad with Olive Oil
Dinner - pork chop with cheese
For snacks, you can eat cheese, vegetables, a handful of nuts, or seeds.
Eating monounsaturated fats is very important in keto. For example, they are found in olive oil and olives. Avoid trans fats - they're found in margarine, fries, and other crispy snacks (which you shouldn't ❗). To get enough omega-3 fatty acids, eat trout, tuna, and salmon.
Since you need to limit fruits and some vegetables, you should take vitamins and minerals.
What you can do on keto:
- various types of oils, including coconut, olives, and others other than pome; The latter are not recommended as they oxidize easily and cause the appearance of free radicals;
- all kinds of meat, eggs, fish, seafood;
- non-starchy vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, peppers;
- leafy vegetables;
- cheese, butter, whole milk;
- some unsweetened fruits and berries, for example cherries, currants;
- Favorite keto fruit is avocado;
- Nuts and seeds, but in limited quantities due to their high protein content.
- wheat, rice, corn, quinoa and other grains;
- sweet, including honey, dried fruits;
- Carrots, potatoes and other starchy vegetables;
- sweet fruit;
When the holidays are approaching and you can't go without alcohol, you can drink whiskey, gin, rum, and vodka on a keto diet. They don't contain any carbohydrates at all unless diluted with juice or soda.
Wine is more complicated. On average, a 150 ml glass of wine contains 33. 6 grams of carbohydrates. And the sweeter the wine, the more sugar it contains. This also applies to dry wines: for example, Riesling has more sugar than Chardonnay.
Complex cocktails, sake and beer are not allowed at all. It continues to ferment in the bottle, adding up to 12 grams of carbohydrates to your strict keto diet. If you can't do without it, choose light varieties.
The keto diet is satisfying and tasty, its only downside is the lack of sweetness, but this too can be made up for with chocolate with 90% cocoa content. It may look like a dream diet, but it's not that easy. The ketogenic diet carries some health risks and can have side effects. Consider the conditions that can occur with the keto diet:
- Keto flu. The keto flu affects some people in the first few days of a diet. This condition is a normal process for the body to adapt to a new diet that is very low in carbohydrates. This makes the symptoms appear similar to those of the usual flu: muscle pain, weakness, dizziness, nausea, insomnia. If you experience these symptoms, don't panic - they will soon go away without a trace. Avoid caffeine, rest often, and drink plenty of water to relieve the condition. If you feel so bad that it affects your life and work, temporarily increase the amount of carbohydrates slightly;
- stool disorders. Gradually entering the keto diet can reduce this side effect, but it is quite common in the beginning. Eat more high fiber vegetables to improve your condition;
- Large amounts of fat in food place an increased burden on the liver. It is advisable to check your liver enzymes from time to time to make sure you are not harming yourself;
- increased the level of cholesterol in the blood. It is recommended that you consult your doctor before starting a ketogenic diet. This is especially important if you are at increased risk of heart disease. The doctor will likely suggest other weight loss options in this case:
- The keto diet can increase urinary calcium levels, which means that it can negatively affect the kidneys and even cause stones.
- Gaining muscle mass on a keto diet is difficult. This is important for athletes.
The keto diet is an effective way to lose weight. It is important to remember that this is a temporary measure, and keto should not be used for long periods of time.
Remember that without rebuilding your lifestyle, the pounds you lost will come back and ruin your hard-won figure and mood. Eating a healthy, balanced diet and exercise is a safe and effective way to not only lose weight, but also be healthy, strong, and energetic.