Can you eat fat to lose fat? While this may sound counterintuitive, a new diet plan has recently taken the spotlight. A lot of people are now patronizing the keto diet because they can pretty much eat tasty food as much meat as they want as long as it’s keto-friendly. I mean, that does not sound like a diet at all.
What exactly is a keto diet and why do a lot of people turn to this diet plan to shed off some extra pounds?
Read on to learn more about this interesting diet plan and see if it will work for you.
What is Keto Diet?
The formula for a keto diet is quite simple – it should be low in carbohydrates, high in fat, and moderate in protein. Fat is the main player in this diet, it takes up about 80 percent of your daily calories. Carbohydrates, on the other hand, is on the back seat with less than five percent of your calories. Protein makes up 15 to 20 percent of your calories.
The general recommended macronutrient distribution is 10% to 35% fat, 45% to 65% carbohydrates, and 20% to 35% protein. Keto diet drastically departs from this recommended distribution of macronutrient.
Ketosis is the most important component of the keto diet. Glucose is the main source of energy of our body. When your body breaks down carbohydrates, it also produces glucose as its source of energy.
You cut off the production of glucose in your body when you’re consuming too little carbs. Naturally, your body would find other sources of energy. Ketosis is the natural and normal process of your body when it taps on other energy sources. Fat is the next in line of energy source. Fat is released from the cells and floods your liver when your blood sugar drops. The liver then transforms the fat into ketone bodies which becomes the second choice of energy.
What is Ketosis and How to Get There?
Carbohydrates and processed foods are the key players in a standard American diet. Glucose is produced when your body breaks down the carbohydrates in your diet. As a result, your body uses glucose as the main source of energy.
Ketosis occurs when you deprive your body of carbohydrates. This natural metabolic state happens when there’s little to no available glucose to be converted to energy. As a result, your body is forced to seek other alternative energy sources. It then breaks down fat and converts it into energy.
The state of ketosis is not something new. In fact, our ancestors used this idea to obtain energy when the gap between meals was long. A diet with very low carbohydrates could sound scary, especially since we’ve used to consuming a high amount of carbohydrates. But you would soon embrace this idea once you learn the many benefits of a keto diet.
Why Should You Follow a Keto Diet?
One of the reasons why keto diet has taken the limelight in the recent years is its effectivity in delivering weight loss.
But is there more to keto diet than weight loss?
Let’s take a closer look at the health benefits that you will get if you switch to a keto diet.
Promotes weight loss
Your body requires more work to convert fat into energy than it would on carbs to energy conversion. Because of this, you lose weight faster when you are on a keto diet. Because this diet is high in protein, it does not leave you starving unlike other diets do. This feeling of satiety will stop unnecessary food cravings.
People who switch to a keto diet lose weight in the first one or two weeks. This is because a low carb diet lowers the insulin level in your body, not to mention it gets rid of the excess water. Some people lose weight as much as 2-3 times than other types of diets without feeling hungry constantly. A keto diet is particularly effective on the first 6 months.
Reduces abdominal fat
There are different types of fats in your body. Its effect in your health is determined on where this fat is stored. Two main types of fats are the visceral fat and subcutaneous fat. The first accumulates in your abdomen while the latter is under your skin.
Visceral fat is more dangerous as it is associated with insulin resistance and inflammation. It can also harm your metabolic function.
A keto diet is effective at lowering this harmful abdominal fat. As a matter of fact, a huge portion of weight loss of a keto diet comes from the abdominal cavity. Overtime, this significantly lowers your risk of acquiring type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
Helps reduce acne
Though there could be a lot of factors that cause acne, some of the most common causes that we can’t disregard include blood sugar and diet.
When your diet is high in processed and refined carbohydrates, your blood sugar fluctuates and your gut bacteria is altered. Both of these factors have a negative effect on your skin. It’s no surprise then that a keto diet is effective in eliminating acne and other skin problems.
Improves heart health
Keto diet can reduce your cholesterol level, especially if you are consuming healthy fats. This can lead to a better heart health. While keto lowers your bad cholesterol level, it significantly increases your good cholesterol levels.
Protects brain functioning
A keto diet has neuroprotective benefits. It helps with the prevention or treatment of conditions like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and even some sleep disorders. In addition, it can improve your cognitive functioning and alertness.
If you want to lose weight yet find it hard to stick to a strict diet, then you should give keto diet a try.
A lot of people who tried this diet swear that it’s effective in helping them lose the excess pounds. More importantly, it targets most of the abdominal fat which can be pretty stubborn to remove. Before you embark on this new diet, make sure to consult your doctor first to ensure safety.
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Gunnars, K. (2018). 10 Health Benefits of Low-Carb and Ketogenic Diets. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/10-benefits-of-low-carb-ketogenic-diets
Sharp, A. (n.d.). Ketogenic Diet 101: A Beginner’s Guide. Retrieved from http://www.eatingwell.com/article/290697/ketogenic-diet-101-a-beginners-guide/
Weik, M. (2018). Ketosis 101 Guide – What is Ketosis & How to Get There. Retrieved from https://www.vaxxenlabs.com/ketosis-guide/