What is a Ketogenic Diet and What are its Benefits

A keto diet is a high-fat, moderate-protein, and low-carb diet. It is designed in such a way that you get more calories from fat and protein than from carbs, which will essentially cause your body to go into a metabolic state known as ketosis.

Ketosis refers to the state where your body depletes its glycogen (or sugar) stores, causing it to find alternative sources of fuel. With a keto diet, your body (liver) is forced to process the high fat and protein food you consume for energy, resulting in weight loss. Reducing your carbohydrates intake significantly improves the ability of your body to burn fat (convert fat into ketones in the liver) for energy.

Types of Keto Diet
There are several variations of the ketogenic diet that feature low-carb intake, including:

The standard keto diet (SKD) - Constitutes 75% fat (high-fat), 20% protein (moderate protein), and 5% carbs (low-carb).
The cyclical ketogenic (CKD) - Alternates 5 days of the SKD diet with 2 days of higher carb refeeds (the routine can vary)
Targeted ketogenic diet (TKD) - Allows you to increase your carbs intake for your workouts
High-protein ketogenic diet (HKD) - Features a higher protein intake than the SKD, so your meals contain 35% protein, 60% fat, and 5% carbs.

There are other variations of the keto diet, though the SKD is the most popular.

Benefits of the keto diet
Epilepsy control - The ketogenic diet was originally designed to reduce/prevent seizures in children where medication was ineffective.
Weight loss - Researchers have observed that the keto diet is more effective than most low-fat diets. It doesn’t require you to track your food or even count calories because of the higher protein intake. The keto diet increases ketones and lowers blood sugar and insulin (fat-storing hormone) levels, which further enhances weight loss.
Fuel for the brain - The keto diet provides increases ketones supply to the brain which improves focus and concentration
Less stomach problems - People on a keto diet report significantly less bloating, stomach cramps, and low risk of diarrhea
Better type II diabetes control - Reducing carbs intake allows for better control of blood sugar and significantly improves insulin sensitivity
Improved physical endurance - The keto diet forces your body to draw energy from the abundant fat stores
Prevents cancer - Carbs are converted to glucose in the body, which fuels cancer cells. Reducing carbs intake would, therefore, deny cancer cells of the energy they need to grow.
Prevents acne - Carbs increase the production of growth hormones like insulin and IGF, which cause acne. Reducing your carb intake would naturally reverse this.

Contact us today
Any drastic change in your diet is potentially harmful to your health. Before starting your new diet, we recommend that you visit Evolve Healthcare to discuss your goals with one of our physicians or nutritionists. This is particularly important if you want to start the keto diet as a way to manage heart disease, diabetes, or hypoglycemia.