A ketogenic diet for weight loss is different from a low-carb diet, although the basic principles of both diets are similar. With a low-carb diet, ketones do not accumulate in the blood, and the body does not use them as an energy source. And in a state of ketosis, it is ketone bodies that are the main fuel that provides the body's functions.
A low-carb diet only limits the amount of glucose, and a ketone diet almost eliminates its intake from the outside. Only 5% of the calories the body receives from carbohydrates, the rest - from fat. At the same time, it is important that a person successfully adapts and is always in a state of ketosis.
If the diet is combined with exercise, you need to carefully monitor the amount of protein that enters. It should not be too small so that the muscles recover after sports. But if protein starts flowing more than usual, the body will start breaking it down into glucose and get out of ketosis.
In the pursuit of harmony, we are sometimes ready for the most drastic measures, reducing our body, leading it to anorexia, which is very dangerous for health. Others exhaust themselves with the burden of power, but still cannot achieve a toned body. This is because it is better to act in a complex way, combining proper nutrition and moderate physical activity. One of the progressive nutritional systems is ketogenic, which will be discussed in our article.
The keto diet (also known as ketogenic or ketone) is a very low-carb diet. At the same time, fat dominates in the diet, as well as a moderate amount of protein (protein).
In the early twenties of the 20th century, doctors faced a serious problem - the treatment of epileptic seizures turned out to be ineffective. Against the background of a normal way of life, attacks on patients occur regularly. Then nutritionists developed a completely new nutritional system that helps stop the symptoms, minimize the crisis. Over time, it becomes clear that, along with seizures, excess subcutaneous fat begins to melt.
Ten to fifteen years later, anticonvulsant drugs appeared to help epileptics control seizures. But a cardiologist from the United States, Robert Atkins, created a diet to lose weight, based on previous developments. True, in his version there are carbohydrates and proteins not violated, which prevents the body from remaining in a state of ketosis, on which the entire harmonious system of the modern keto diet is based.
In the late nineties, American director Jim Abrahams decided to share the story of his son's struggle with epilepsy. Due to intolerance to some medications, as well as their side effects, the boy could not take the prescribed medication. The ketogenic diet helped to find a way out, for which Jim made a famous film called "Do No Harm" with Meryl Streep in the title role. So the keto diet goes beyond a mere medical phenomenon and becomes common knowledge.
Where does the wild popularity of such a power system come from, why does it really work? Normally our body gets energy "fuel" from carbohydrates, converting them to glucose. It also nourishes brain neurons. However, with the lack of this product, the body begins to look for alternative nutrition methods using fat cells.
Research scientists have shown that the ketogenic diet suppresses the production of the hormone ghrelin in the body. He is responsible for hunger. With a properly chosen diet of this type of food, you will stop experiencing constant cravings for something to eat. This is a pleasant side effect of ketosis.
When our body stops accepting carbohydrates as its only source of energy, it turns to the same fat reserves stored for a rainy day. They are processed by the liver, broken down into glycerol and fatty acids. They then form ketone bodies that nourish the body and brain.
This process is called metabolic ketosis. It comes about on the seventh day of the diet. Then the body stops the process of processing glucose (glycolysis), using reserves from the muscles, liver and other tissues, while activating lipolysis - the breakdown of high-quality fat.
The specialty of this type of diet is that it is possible to lose weight by burning your own fat reserves. After all, the carbohydrate diet does not happen. At the same time, the protein tissue remains intact. That is, such a diet is very suitable for weight loss and for those who are involved in sports that require special endurance (heavyweight, marathon, triathlon).
The main feature of the ketogenic diet is that it is a varied diet, depending on your body's capabilities. There are three main types of diets.
- Standard. This is the most accessible type of diet, when carbohydrates are gradually reduced to an incredible minimum. It is perfect for anyone involved in sports or fitness. The main principle here is the rejection of the so-called refeed (days in which the consumption of carbohydrates is allowed). It is very effective and the number of calories received is the same.
- Targeted or targeted. In this type, "boot" days are acceptable, when there are foods rich in carbohydrates, they are acceptable. For example, to get rid of drowsiness or fatigue during intense training, for example, before a competition.
- Cycle. This option is considered the most advanced, not available to everyone. With such a diet, you need to independently determine when it is time to replenish the supply of carbohydrates, which are needed, for example, during intense training or body fatigue. It implies a return to ketosis when balance is restored.
Nutritionists recommend starting the diet with a standard one, but if you feel unwell, switch to a gentler regimen.
The ketogenic diet was first used in the 1920s, and not at all for weight loss - it was successfully used at the Mayo Clinic (US) to treat children with epilepsy. However, because obesity was not a global problem 100 years ago, the weight loss benefits of the diet have recently been exploited.
What is the ketogenic diet for weight loss
The name of the diet comes from the word "ketosis". This is a metabolic condition that occurs when very low amounts of carbohydrates enter the body. It contributes to rapid weight loss, but, as studies show, only for a short period of time. In the long term (if you follow a ketogenic diet for more than a year), the results are not too different from other diets. A balanced low-calorie diet will have the same effect, but it will be much faster.
Stages of body adaptation: pros and cons
Due to genetic differences, each person has an individual "journey" to ketosis. Some can come to it in three or four days and not leave it for a month without problems, while others can not achieve results even after a week. No need to worry and overdo it, give up half way. The main thing is to understand what is happening in the body, where to start the keto diet and how to deal with negativity.
To get the body used to ketosis, it has to go through a difficult path with many changes.
Foods that are allowed and prohibited in the keto diet
In any food system, certain foods are excluded in favor of the consumption of others. For example, the paleo diet includes only what cavemen can get on their own. So dos and don'ts in the keto diet.
- Organic red meat: lamb, beef, pork, game, chicken with skin.
- Fat, fat.
- Heavy cream, butter, ghee.
- River and sea fish with more types of fat (salmon, sardines, flounder, trout, tuna), seafood (shrimp, clams, crab, lobster).
- Vegetable oils are best eaten raw: flaxseed, sesame, olive, coconut, macadamia and avocado oils.
- All green vegetables.
- Nuts and seeds.
- Several types of legumes: asparagus (green), peanuts.
- Mushrooms of various types (forest and cultivated by humans).
- Dairy products and lactic acid (cottage cheese, kefir, fermented baked milk, yogurt).
If you follow a keto diet, you should not consume hydrogenated oils or at least partially hydrogenated oils in any form. They trigger a spike in cholesterol, stimulate inflammation, and increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.
- Sugar, as a sweetener and in the composition of any dish.
- Refined and frozen vegetable oil.
- Bread, pastries, pastries, flour products.
- Skim, condensed or whole milk.
- Vermicelli, pasta, spaghetti, lasagna.
- Cookies, desserts, cakes, sweets.
- Rice, quinoa.
- Fruits and dried fruits.
- Any grain.
- Jams, preserves, mousses, puddings.
- Powdered and sweet drinks, soda.
- Artificial crab meat, stem.
- Semi-finished products in any form.
- Cold cuts, including salami, pepperoni, and some cured meats.
- Dairy products and sweet lactic acid.
- Starches, as well as starchy vegetables (potatoes, beets, corn).
- Products containing sorbitol or fructose.
- Nut culture.
- Honey and foods containing it.
- Juice shop and homemade.
The list of permitted drinks is quite extensive, and includes light alcohol, but in very moderate doses.
- Pure water.
- Water with lemon or cucumber.
- oxtail soup.
- Green and black tea.
- Coffee without additives or with heavy cream.
- Unsweetened hemp or almond milk.
- Champagne brut, whiskey, dry martini, dry white wine (in small quantities).
At the same time, you should not drink juice, fresh juice, beer, energy drinks and other things that contain carbohydrates.
Using any, even the most "safe" sweeteners, you don't allow your body to wean itself off that tempting offer. However, in some exceptional cases, it is acceptable to use some popular ingredients, such as stevia, xylitol or erythritol. The main thing here is not to overdo it and not to get out of ketosis, otherwise all previous efforts will be in vain.
Side effects of the keto diet
Proponents of the ketogenic diet admit that it can have side effects such as constipation, nausea, and vomiting. But these are all the little things in life. Being in ketosis can have more serious consequences:
- Performance degradation under load. Regular intense exercise is difficult because of the decrease in the amount of glycogen in the muscles and liver. You need to forget about serious training.
- Slows the recovery of the exercising athlete. On a ketogenic diet, the rate of muscle growth is reduced, and the recovery process is slower. This is also a result of a decrease in the amount of glycogen in the muscles.
- Kidney stones. In a state of ketosis, the risk of kidney stones increases.
- Type 2 diabetes. Due to the lack of carbohydrates in the diet, the body's sensitivity to insulin gradually decreases, and glucose intolerance develops. This can lead to type 2 diabetes.
The ketogenic diet has nothing to do with a healthy diet. It can trigger a disease, the cause of which is always considered to be malnutrition - type 2 diabetes. The link of the disease to the state of ketosis has been confirmed by the ETH and the Children's University Hospital Zurich as a result of a joint study. Scientists have done experiments on mice, but it is likely that people react to a state of ketosis in the same way. It is better not to take risks.
Keto diet rules: tips in and out, side effects
The main postulate
This diet is based on the principle of absorbing as much fat as possible, with extreme restriction of carbohydrates, as we have said. However, not everyone can get into that unusual mode comfortably. Therefore, experts give advice on what to do, where to start and the rules to follow. Let's summarize everything we've learned so far.
- Pay attention to carbohydrates, if possible, completely abandon their use. After all, they not only provide an excessive amount of energy that the body cannot process, but can also disrupt metabolism and cause various diseases.
- Choosing vegetables on a keto diet doesn't mean switching to potatoes and carrots. Absolutely not. It is better to forget about all the starchy gifts of the kitchen garden and garden once and for all. It is worth giving preference to green vegetables that grow on the surface of the earth.
- Eating healthy fats should not be limited to butter and meat. Take advantage of opportunities, such as eating more oily fish, seafood, avocados, olives and more.
- Fans of the keto diet mostly learn to cook on their own, which is undoubtedly an advantage. Due to the choice of food, going to a cafe or restaurant will be difficult, because it is not a fact that the menu there will be adapted to you. In addition, you may not guess the quality and composition of some dishes. Such things can "knock out" of ketosis for a week, which is why you need to work again. Cook at home, so you will be sure that everything is in order.
- Use various vitamin complexes, supplements, fermented foods during the keto diet. This will help your digestive tract, as well as the whole body, to get part of the missing substances, macro and micro elements, vitamins and other things.
- Water is the basis of life. You need to drink it always, everywhere and a lot, especially on a difficult diet like the ketogenic diet. If it is difficult to learn how to do this, set yourself a "reminder" and drink 100-200 grams every hour.
For some people on the keto diet, even the idea of fasting is unacceptable. However, intermittent systems are quite accessible to everyone. This means that on the chosen day you give yourself a corridor at eight to ten hours, when you do not take any food at all, but only water. This system will allow you to burn body fat even better.
Many are interested in the question of how to enter the mode so that at the same time it is smooth and minimal. First, you should correctly calculate the optimal calorie content for the keto diet. This is done based on individual indicators: height, weight, gender, activity, lifestyle. Most of the time, you need to maintain the right balance of BJU: 70% quality fat, 20% protein, only 10% carbohydrates.
- Start with water. You should drink at least two liters in the beginning. Ideally, the amount of water absorbed per day should be 2. 7 liters for women, and 3. 7 for men.
- To compensate for the loss of sodium, you need to consume about half or a teaspoon of regular table salt every day.
- Do not forget to add reserves of magnesium, potassium, otherwise you will not get unpleasant consequences for a long time.
- At first, stop strength training and switch to aerobics or yoga.
Meditation can significantly reduce stress, which will help you quickly adapt to a new menu. Look inside yourself, set realistic goals, reflect on your body and spirit, then everything will surely work out. Examples of menus and recipes for the keto diet are discussed in detail in articles on our website, there is no harm in reading them for review.
The right way out
Ketone diet is a special food system. It happened historically that some citizens, for example, the Far North, lived in this mode throughout their lives from generation to generation. However, some people, after going through drying or simply losing weight, improving their health or achieving other goals, want to return to their normal way of life.
It is better to get out of a rut gradually, and not suddenly. The body needs to be given time to rebuild eating carbohydrates, to start the glycolysis process. Therefore, it is best to introduce carbohydrate products one by one without fanaticism. For example, start with a piece of bread a day, half a grapefruit, an apple. This will help you not feel any discomfort.
Usually those who have tried the keto diet, talk about rapid weight loss, drying. Their bodies become more toned, unnecessary fat residues under the skin melt without a trace, making the muscles more prominent and beautiful. All body systems work better, metabolism becomes normal, skin, hair, nails become healthier.
However, it happens that some side effects appear, as described at the beginning of the article. But if the absence of hunger can be considered a plus, then the smell of acetone from the mouth is almost not. If this happens within the first week or two, there is nothing to worry about. If the process is prolonged, then it's time to go to the doctor.
Key points about the dangers of the ketogenic diet and healthy alternatives
There is no evidence to support the beneficial effects of a ketogenic diet on the body, other than improving the condition of children with epilepsy. It has an adverse effect on the growth of muscle mass, reduces performance and can cause serious harm to health.
Long-term studies have shown that using a ketogenic diet for a year and a balanced diet provide approximately the same weight loss. At the same time, the right diet does not harm health, it can be followed even for a lifetime without the slightest negative effect.
It has long been proven that any extreme diet is dangerous. Violence against the body is not in vain. Of course, there are advantages to the ketogenic diet: in a state of ketosis, fat is burned quickly, and you see the first results within a month. But there are more cons, and they are dangerous. Please pay attention that:
- Diets have side effects. During the adaptation period, constipation, nausea and vomiting are possible.
- A ketogenic diet reduces glycogen stores in the liver and muscles. This leads to a decline in well-being, a decline in productivity.
- Health risks are increasing. A state of ketosis can trigger type 2 diabetes, kidney stone formation.
Think about whether you are ready to risk yourself, lose weight quickly on a ketogenic diet, and then work in a pharmacy for the rest of your day. A healthy diet and gradual weight loss is more comfortable. Try it.