The keto diet aims at teaching one’s body to burn stored body fat rather than relying on carbohydrates. This leads to the metabolic state referred to as ketosis.
For this reason, the ketogenic diet features higher fat intake and lower carbs. While the transition from a high carbohydrate diet to one where your intake is below 50g a day can be difficult, resulting in “keto flu” for the first few days, there are major benefits. And once you’ve pushed through the initial bodily shock of your dietary change, these benefits far outweigh the slight discomfort experienced in those first few days.
1. Weight Loss
Diets that are low in carbs and higher in fats have been used for centuries as part of a weight loss program. Because you’re teaching your body to rely on its stored body fat for energy, you start burning rather than storing your fat intake. This rather obviously leads to weight loss. As your body runs out of carbohydrates to burn, it latches onto the only other source available—your fat.
Naturally, one doesn’t want to reach the point where the body begins to draw energy from muscles. That’s why the ketogenic diet, as outlined by BioKeto, is higher in fats—so that there’s always an energy source for your body to function on.
2. Appetite Control
The keto diet provides a more reliable source of energy for your body in the form of fat. This results in a more naturally energized state. High-fat foods are also known to be more satiating, which helps to prevent binge-eating. Appetite is better regulated in this way, meaning you’ll feel better for longer without having to “refuel” as regularly as in a high-carb diet.
3. Blood Sugar Control
Insulin levels drop as your body turns into a fat-burning machine, because it’s the body’s fat storing hormone. This also helps to better regulate your blood sugar levels in a healthy way. The keto diet has been shown to be far more effective in preventing and managing diabetes than the popular method of following a low-calorie diet.
4. Brain Power
Even if you’re not particularly worried about losing weight, the ketogenic diet may still be the smart choice for you. That’s because it can be used specifically for developing brain power and mental focus. In fact, many practitioners follow the ketogenic diet specifically for this benefit!
That’s because the ketosis metabolic state results in increased ketones. Ketones are known to be a better source of energy for our brains than carbohydrates. Combined with the lower risk of blood sugar spikes, general focus and concentration levels are greatly enhanced.
Oxidative stress, which is produced by higher insulin levels in the body, is a major contributing factor to aging. By reducing the levels of insulin by relying on fats and ketones as a source of energy, oxidative stress is similarly decreased. This helps in increasing your lifespan, acting as an anti-aging process.
6. General Health – Epilepsy, Cholesterol, and Blood Pressure
Since the early 1900s, the keto diet has been used to successfully treat epilepsy. It remains one of the most popular therapy treatments for those with uncontrolled epilepsy. One of the factors that makes it so popular is that it allows for fewer medications to be used without compromising on control.
Because your body starts burning fat rather than storing it, the keto diet also helps to improve cholesterol and blood pressure levels. Part of the reason for this is that both conditions are commonly associated with excess weight, which the ketogenic diet targets directly as well. Furthermore, the dietary form also improves triglyceride levels, increase HDL, and decrease LDL.
Most cancers use glucose as a source of energy to survive. This is why most doctors are promoting cutting back on sugars and carbohydrates as a means of preventing, managing, and even treating cancer.
The nature of the keto diet drastically decreases your carbohydrate and glucose intake. There have been studies to test whether the ketogenic diet is specifically effective in combating cancer. 60% of the test subjects in a 2012 study showed promising results after following the ketogenic diet for only 28 days! All the participants were cancer patients who had unsuccessfully tried other cancer treatment options before.
Keto Diet 7-Day Meal Plan
Interested in following the ketogenic diet? Here’s a handy 7-day meal plan to help you get started!
Breakfast: Poached eggs with sautéed greens cooked in coconut oil.
Lunch: Grilled chicken and a seasonal salad.
Supper: Baked salmon with a nutty crust, served with baked cauliflower.
Breakfast: Smoked salmon with leafy greens and an avocado.
Lunch: Thai beef salad with tamari dressing.
Supper: Butter chicken and cauliflower rice.
Breakfast: Mountain Coffee (long black), grass-fed butter, and MCT oil.
Lunch: Bunless burger served with raw kale slaw.
Supper: Slow-cooked pulled beef, served with rainbow slaw and brussels sprouts.
Breakfast: Mushroom and spinach omelet, cooked in coconut oil.
Lunch: Line-caught tuna with heirloom tomato salad and drizzled with olive oil.
Supper: Crispy, skinned salmon with a zucchini noodle pesto.
Breakfast: Crispy bacon with sautéed greens and buttered mushrooms.
Lunch: Roast chicken breast, avocado, and seasonal greens.
Supper: Grass-fed sirloin steak and steamed greens.
Breakfast: Zucchini and bacon pancakes, cooked in butter or ghee.
Lunch: Lettuce wrap with Mexican chicken and avocado.
Supper: Middle Eastern chicken rissoles and seasonal greens.
Breakfast: Capsicum, zucchini, tomato, and seasonal herb medley sautéed in coconut oil and served with poached eggs.
Lunch: Zucchini noodles and salmon salad with avocado dressing.
Supper: Lamb kofta and seasonal greens.
- The Keto Diet: The Complete Guide to a High-Fat Diet by Leanne Vogel
- The Complete Ketogenic Diet for Beginners by Amy Ramos
- Keto Comfort Foods by Maria Emmerich
- The Keto Reset Diet by Mark Sisson
- Quick & Easy Ketogenic Cooking by Maria Emmerich