My opinion on the Keto Diet
One of my clients asked my opinion on the Keto Diet, so let’s break it down.
The Keto Diet is high Fat (75%), moderate Protein (20%) and low Carbohydrate (5%).
Your body usually turns carbs into glucose for energy, which is stored as Glycogen in the liver and muscles. When you cut carbs from your diet, you switch to burning Ketones. It will take 24-48 hours for Glycogen stores to be depleted and for your body to transition into Ketosis.
- Fast results initially. For every 1g of carbs stored in the body as Glycogen, approx 2-3g of water is retained for processing it. This explains why Keto will produce fast initial weight loss for you. As Glycogen stores are depleted, water weight is lost alongside.
- Ketosis is thought to have brain protecting benefits. As many as half of young people with epilepsy had fewer seizures after following the diet. Keto has also shown it’s effective for lowering insulin levels, especially for people with Type 2 diabetes, or prediabetes.
- A satiating effect with decreased food cravings due to the high-fat and high protein content of the diet.
- A decrease in appetite-stimulating hormones, such as insulin and ghrelin, when eating restricted amounts of carbohydrate.
- Reduction in calorie intake, potentially due to the restrictive nature of the diet.
- Athletes need carbs. The low carb, high fat diet could result in less energy and endurance in athletes.
- It’s possible for 70% of the brains energy requirements to be met by Ketones, but it needs some glucose to fulfil that last 30%. It’s possible for the liver to produce glucose via gluconeogenesis.
- Many of the foods that make up the Keto diet are high in saturated fats. These can increase cholesterol, which often leads to a risk of heart disease.
- Reduced fruits and vegetables. With carbs reduced to around 20g, this severely restricts the amount of fruits and vegetables we’re able to consume. One medium apple will blow your entire carb allotment for the day.
The keto Diet can help with weight loss and have some other potential health benefits, but people with a greater risk of heart disease may want to try a different diet.
Kat Myles, personal trainer
Pre and post-natal and senior fitness lessons, in person or over video call. I’m based in Merida, Mexico.
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