From the news to talk shows, and even on the cover of magazines, the ketogenic, also called keto diet, seems to be everywhere. Though many believe it to be a new diet, and some have called it a fad, it was actually developed in the 1920’s.
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Although it was created as a treatment to control epilepsy, there are many other benefits. Many start the ketogenic diet primarily for weight loss. Others eat a keto diet for the anti-inflammatory benefits.
Research has shown that a ketogenic diet:
- Supports blood sugar control
- Keeps you full longer
- Reduces sugar cravings
- Increased energy
- Mental Focus
- Improves triglycerides and cholesterol levels
- Reduces the risk of heart disease
The keto diet is about limiting your carb intake. It is a low carbohydrate, moderate protein, and high-fat diet. The standard ketogenic diet is 5% carbs, 25% protein, and 70% fats. These are called macronutrients, or macros.
Carbs are a limit. Most resources recommend not going over 20 net carbs. To figure out the net carbs of a food item you would subtract total fiber from the total carbs.
Protein is a goal. you want to make sure you are getting enough protein. Too little of protein will cause your body to lose muscle.
Although this is a high-fat diet, fat is considered a lever. This means you use it to keep yourself full. You do not have to hit this macro.
To figure out your personal macros and calories allowed per day it is best to use a macro calculator.
In the beginning, I feel it is important to track your macros. However, you can do this whatever way is the easiest for you. Some people like to write it down throughout the day, while others choose to use an app specifically designed to track macros.
The most accurate way to know you are in Ketosis is by testing your blood with a monitor specifically made to test for ketones. The one we recommend and use is the Keto-Mojo. You can grab your keto-mojo here. (You will be glad you did)
The goal of the keto diet is to get your body into ketosis, not to be confused with ketoacidosis. In truth, this is not achieved by depriving our body of calories but by limiting our carbohydrate intake.
Once your body has run out of glycogen stores the liver then processes the fats into an energy source called ketones. This gives the body a constant source of energy.
When you are eating a typical carb rich standard diet your blood sugars rise and fall throughout the day. As a result, this causes low energy and hunger.
Foods you can eat
- Meats – fish, beef, poultry, lamb, eggs
- High-fat dairy – Heavy whipping cream, cheese, butter, and cream cheese
- Leafy Greens
- Above ground veggies
- Low glycemic index fruits – avocados and berries in moderation
- Low carb nuts – almonds, pecans, walnuts, macadamia, and brazil nuts
- Sweeteners – Monkfruit, erythritol, stevia
- Healthy fats and oils – coconut, avocado, and olive oil, grass-fed butter, ghee (Don’t fear fats)
Foods to stay away from
- Refined Carbs
- Starch – beans, potatoes, legumes
- Wheat – pasta, bread, cereals
- High carb fruits
- Grains – corn, wheat, rice, barley, etc.
- Sugar – honey, dextrose, coconut sugar, palm sugar, agave
- Root veggies
There are several variations of the keto diet.Strict keto and dirty keto are two of these variations. Strict keto, also called clean keto, is often followed for medical reasons or to eliminate inflammation in the body. Dirty keto allows more of the inflammmatory ingredients and is followed by thoses following the ketogenic diet for weight loss. With the multiple variation you can make it work for you.
Although it does take some planning and research, it is not difficult to follow. There is no doubt it delivers results.
Over the next several weeks we will be going into depth on the ketogenic diet. So, be sure not to miss our next post “How to Keto on a Budget”. Also, be sure to sign up for our keto free printables.
RELATED: Keto Diet: A Quick Beginner’s Guide
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THE INFORMATION IN THIS POST IS FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES. IT IS BASED ON OUR OWN PERSONAL EXPERIENCES AND OPINIONS. I AM NOT A MEDICAL DOCTOR AND WHAT IS WRITTEN SHOULD NOT BE USED TO DIAGNOSE OR TREAT ANY DISEASE OR ILLNESS. YOU SHOULD CONSULT YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE STARTING ANY EXERCISE OR DIET PROGRAMS.