A common question for people trying to lose weight is ‘What is the Ketogenic Diet’.
There’s no denying that the keto diet still reigns as one of the most popular—and highly researched—diets out there right now.
Many people use it and have great weight loss results from it. But many don’t fully get what its about and why it’s so hyped.
I decided to look into it just to get a clearer understanding.
What is the Ketogenic Diet?
So you always hear the term keto diet or ketogenic diet.
Let me explain it to you. The body needs energy and the primary source of energy is sugar or carbohydrates (they’re the same thing).
Carbohydrates get converted into sugar and our body uses that primarily as energy because we eat so much sugar.
However, there are alternative fuels, something called ketone bodies.
Ketone bodies are created when your liver takes fat, (stored fat and the fat that you eat) and converts it into ketone bodies.
So your body now, instead of using sugar as energy is going to use the ketones.
The beauty of it is because the stored fat is being converted into ketones and burnt, you start losing weight and you start dropping sizes because you are reducing fat cells in your body.
The body has no choice, it takes the fat that you have on your body and the fat you eat and uses that as energy.
So carbs have now become enemy!
Now, I’m not saying I fully advocate the ketogenic diet, because from what I know carbohydrates are very important to us.
If you do decide to do this, make sure you seek the right medical advice, especially if you have pre-existing conditions.
What Not To Eat On Keto Diet
Staying away from carbohydrates on a keto diet means no grains, rice, pasta, potatoes, sweet potatoes (I’m a big fan of sweet potatoes), you also have to stay away from certain fruits and vegetables.
Basically, all kinds of sugars.
It’s not easy. You have to, quite drastically switch things up in your body, you’re basically telling your body to burn fats instead of sugars for fuel.
What Can You Eat On Keto?
The things you can eat now are full-fat dairy, butter, salmon, eggs, olive oil, avocados, steaks basically things with higher fat content.
But remember, you can’t put BBQ sauce on your steak because sauces generally contain a lot of sugar.
You can have SOME carbs in your diet, the way it’s generally calculated is this:
60-75% of Fats
15-30% of Proteins
5-10% of Carbs
5 to 10% of carbs would equate to maybe 2 maybe 3 slices of bread per day!
This is the balance that needs to be maintained for the keto diet to work.
If you don’t stick to it you won’t be in ketosis.
Now, one way you can actually tell if the diet is working and you’re in ketosis is you can use these things called keto sticks.
Ketones are detectable in our urine, so you dip one of these strips in your urine and it will show you via a color chart whether you’re in ketosis or not.
I had no idea these things existed until I researched this, it’s a lot more strict than some of the diets I’ve seen.
The Ketogenic Diet is Not For Everybody
My verdict is this, the keto diet like any other diet isn’t a diet you can ‘sort of’ do, you have to be fully committed and stay consistent for months for you to see results.
Carbs are in so many of my favorite foods, I eat a lot of brown rice and sweet potatoes for my energy, and I feel that for me personally, it would be really hard to switch the percentage of carbs I eat to such a low number.
To answer the question of what is the ketogenic diet, you could say this diet is basically the Atkins diet, but with a much lower allowance of carbs.
I feel many others might find themselves hitting a wall after a while with this, the numbers look daunting.
But there are different types of the keto diet such as the cyclic, targeted, and vegan keto diet that might be worth looking deeper into.
Another thing to note is that you can’t really exercise intensively on a keto diet, you’ll find, especially in the early stages, that you may have lower energy due to the lower carbs in your body, so if you’re somebody who does intense workouts, bear that in mind and try to find a way around it.
What do you think of the keto diet, are you intrigued, wanna give it a go? have you tried the keto diet yourself, and did it work for you?