As you have heard by now, diets with a low level of carbohydrates are very effective for weight loss. These are not instant diets that quickly remove the weight, but just as quickly and return. It is a change of nutrition that has a beneficial effect on your health. The ketogenic diet is based precisely on the principles of a low carbohydrate intake.
Although this diet is very old, it hasn’t become popular until 1994, after the Hollywood star Jim Abrahams successfully cured his son of epilepsy by following a meal plan of ketogenic diet.
In this detailed article I list all you need to know about the ketogenic diet.
What is the ketogenic diet?
Ketogenic diet ( keto diet) dates from 1920 and endocrinologist Dr. Henry Geyelin created it in order to treating epilepsy. 1921 Geyelin found that the type of diet that he recommends has positive effect on how the body processes nutrients, leading to fewer attacks in patients.
The ketogenic diet is a diet plan that includes the replacement of foods rich in carbohydrates with foods that are rich in fats. It is very similar to the Atkins diet. In fact, the induction phase of the Atkins diet is a ketogenic diet.
Diet implies a drastic reduction in carbohydrates and replacement with foods that are rich in fats. Reducing the intake of carbohydrates puts the body in a metabolic state called ketosis. At the stage of ketosis, the body becomes very efficient when using fat as a primary energy source. In the liver, fat converts into ketones, which provides energy for the brain.
Note: The ketogenic diet can cause a drastic reduction in the level of blood sugar and insulin levels.
How does ketogenic diet affect weight loss?
Under normal conditions, the carbohydrates from food are converting into glucose during digestion, which is then used as energy by cells. However, if the organism is in the phase of ketosis, the liver converts fat in the fatty acids and ketones which are used for the same purposes.
To achieve and maintain a state of ketosis in the body, it is necessary to drastically reduce your intake of carbohydrates. Most of the foods that you enter should be rich in protein and fat, while sources of carbohydrates should come from vegetables that grow above the ground. During the ketogenic diet, you should drastically limit carbohydrate intake to a maximum of 50 grams per day, and in this way you force the fat burning.
Science still has no precise explanation of why ketogenic diet so successfully changed natural processes in the body. But for now has not only helped to reduce weight and epilepsy, but also in a variety of neurological disorders.
Research shows that the ketogenic diet is much more efficient, compared to other diets that are based on the principles of a low carbohydrate intake. What is most interesting is that high protein keto diet has positive effect on satiety, so the weight loss process is even easier, although no exact count calories. One study shows that people who followed ketogenic diet discipline lost 2.2 times more weight compared to those who followed the diet who promote limiting intake of calories and fat.
Achieving the optimal level of ketosis is not an easy task. But the positive side is that in this way forcing the body to burn fat instead of primary energy sources such as starch and sugar.
Other health benefits
Diabetes and prediabetes
Diabetes is characterized as a disorder of metabolism, accompanied with high levels of blood sugar and unevenly insulin secretion.
The ketogenic diet can help in reducing excess weight, and excess weight is closely linked with the emergence of type 2 diabetes, prediabetes and metabolic syndrome. One study shows that the ketogenic diet improved insulin sensitivity by as much as 75%. Another study found that 7 of 21 patients with type 2 diabetes managed to stop the use of medicines for diabetes.
While in this study group that was on the keto diet they lost 25 pounds compared to people who were on a diet that includes increased intake of carbohydrates. This group lost 15 pounds. What is interesting is that 95.2% of the group that was on the ketogenic diet has been able to stop or to reduce the intake of medicines for diabetes. While the second group the percentage was 62%.
Alzheimer’s disease – can reduce symptoms and slow the progression of the disease.
Fight against cancer – currently used to treat several types of cancer and to slow tumor growth.
Parkinson’s disease – in this study it was observed that this diet have a positive impact on reducing the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
Heart disease – diet has a positive effect on the levels of good HDL cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar.
Epilepsy – research shows that this diet can reduce the number of attacks.
Brain injuries – Research on animals has shown that the ketogenic diet can improve recovery after brain injury and that alleviates concussion.
Acne – reduced intake of sugar and refined foods can help with problems with acne.
The foods you should eat
Keto food can be very tasty. Depending on your goal, there are some recommendations that you should follow. Classical formulas recommend 4:1 ratio of fat and protein. Some expert (persons using the ketogenic diet as a potential nutrient for the treatment of cancer) recommended 75% fat, 23% protein and 2% carbohydrate.
For body builders, recommendation is only 30 to 50 grams of carbohydrates during the day, which can be achieved through the vegetables. While for people who want to remove belly fat recommendation is ratio of 50% fat, 30-40% protein and any source of carbohydrates from vegetables (but vegetables that belongs to the group of allowed vegetables with low carbohydrate).
Protein and fat have the greater effect of satiety in relation to the carbohydrate. Therefore, during the ketogenic diet you often unconsciously bring fewer calories during the day because you simply aren’t hungry.
Most of the calories come from fat, but some people have a problem during the digestion of omega-6 fats, so pay attention to the content of these fats in cheaper vegetable oils.
You should base most of the meals on these foods:
- meat – ham, steak, sausage, chicken, turkey, bacon, red meat
- cheese – one that is not processed (mozzarella, cheddar, goat)
- oily fish such as tuna, salmon or mackerel
- seeds and nuts – nuts, flaxseed, pumpkin seeds, almonds, chia seeds
- healthy oils such as olive oil, coconut oil and avocado oil
- spices – pepper, salt and various healing herbs
- vegetables with low-carb – tomato, onions, bell peppers and most green vegetables
The foods you should avoid
You should avoid all food that is rich in carbohydrates. This is a list of these foods:
- All fruits except for small quantities of berries such as strawberries.
- Sweetened foods such as smoothies and fruit juices, cake, ice cream, candy, soft drinks and the like.
- Starches and grains – cereals, pasta, rice, wheat bread and the like.
- Legumes – beans, lentils, peas, etc.
- Root vegetables such as potatoes, carrots and the like.
- Spices and sauces that contain extra sugar.
- Alcohol, because many drinks contain carbohydrates and may expel the body from the stage of ketosis.
- Unhealthy fats such as mayonnaise or vegetable oil.
- Low-fat or dietary products with reduced fat because it is the most likely processed food that is full of carbohydrates.
- Dietary products with no added sugar – these are mainly sugar alcohols that affect the level of ketosis in the body. Also, it is often a highly processed food.
Of course, try to avoid trans-fats as much as possible!
From time to time you’ll sense a great need for sugar, especially if you have previously used to consuming large amounts of sugar. It is important to stay strong and resist the “sugar attack”.
We recommend that you use a healthy and natural alternative to sugar as stevia. If you decide for stevia, try a liquid version instead of the one in the powder. Stevia powder often contains maltodextrin, so read the label on the product. Stevia is as much as 200 to 400 times sweeter than sugar and has no calories (0 calories).
Side effects of ketogenic diet
Although the keto diet is safe for most people, can occur mild side effects during the period of adaptation of the organism to a new diet. This effect is called “keto flu” and often takes a few days.
Some of the mild side effects are increased hunger, impaired brain function, lower energy levels, digestive problems, sleep problems and lower quality of sleep, nausea and poor performance in training. To reduce these effects, you can first try with regular diet which recommends low carbohydrate intake. In this way you can prepare the body for lower carbohydrate intake which follows.
Ketogenic diet may also disrupt the relationship of fluid and mineral balance in the body. So we recommend increasing salt intake slightly with meals or taking supplements such as vitamins and minerals. As for minerals, try to enter 3000 to 4000 mg of sodium, 1000 mg of potassium and 300 mg of magnesium during the day.
At the beginning of the diet is very important that you do not pay attention to the number of calories that you eat until you get satiety. This diet usually leads to weight loss without having to pay attention to the number of calories.
Manu for 7 days
- Breakfast – Eggs, bacon and tomato
- Lunch – Salad with chicken, olive oil and feta cheese
- Dinner – Salmon with asparagus cooked in butter
- Breakfast – basil, eggs, tomatoes and goat cheese
- Lunch – Peanut butter, almond milk, cocoa butter and milk shakes with stevia
- Dinner – Meatballs with vegetables and cheddar cheese
- Breakfast – Keto milk shake
- Lunch – shrimp salad with avocado and olive oil
- Dinner – Pork chops with broccoli, Parmesan cheese and salad
- Breakfast – Omelet with avocado, peppers, onions, spices and salsa
- Lunch – A handful of nuts and celery with guacamole and salsa
- Dinner – Stuffed chicken with cheese and vegetables
- Breakfast – Omelet with cheese and tomatoes
- Lunch – The remains of the last supper
- Dinner – eggs, steak, mushrooms and salad
- Breakfast – Omelet with ham and vegetables
- Lunch – Ham and cheese and a handful of nuts
- Dinner – White fish with eggs and spinach cooked on coconut oil
- Breakfast – eggs with bacon and mushrooms
- Lunch – Hamburger with salsa, cheese and guacamole
- Dinner – Beef steak with eggs and salad
If you get hungry between meals, try to reduce your hunger with these snacks:
- Cheese with olives
- 1-2 hard boiled eggs
- Dark chocolate with 90% cocoa content
- Celery with salsa and guacamole
- A handful of nuts and seeds
- Yogurt mixed with cocoa butter and nut butter
- Strawberries with whipped cream
- Milk shake of low-sugar and carbohydrates, cocoa butter and nut butter
- The remains of previous meals.
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