What is Keto Diet?
Keto Diet has been the popular term for discussion recently, as we seek benefits from this magical diet routine. Is Keto simply another diet trend, or a proven regimen to follow? Many such questions appear for those who turn to this diet. However trendy, keto diet came into conception about a century ago for the treatment of epilepsy in the 1920s. Many other diet trends have appeared and disappeared over the years, but why has Keto survived so long? Here’s a brief to help you weigh the merits of this century-old diet plan.
Understanding Keto Diet
A Ketogenic Diet is simply a dietary regime wherein your carbohydrate intake is limited to a mere 50 grams per day while the fat and protein intake are simultaneously increased. The idea is to shift the primary calorie source of your body from the easily digestible carbohydrates to the stubborn fats by pushing your body in a state wherein your body draws 70-80 percent of its essential calories from fat. The rules of a keto diet are simple to follow with only a few firm parameters you need to adhere to. This simplistic approach of a keto diet is what attracts most people to experiment with it. Over the years, many other variations of the keto diet have appeared on the scene, discussed in the next section.
Types of Ketogenic Diets
The Classic Keto
The classic keto is where your diet will include 90% fat and only 10% carbohydrates. Structured in a 4:1 ratio, the classic Keto is similar to what was conceived in the 1920s. This diet plan involves micromanaging the quantity of food you eat in a day and re-planning it as per the prescribed ratio for keto.
The Modified Keto
This is a less strict version of keto diet routine, ideal for those who are trying a keto diet for the first time. In comparison to the classic keto diet, modified keto is easier to sustain for longer durations. The fat to carbohydrate ratio with a modified keto diet can either be 1:2 or 1:1, where the goal is to reduce the body’s calorie dependency on carbohydrates and replace it with fats.
The MCT Keto
MCT or Medium Chain Triglycerides is another version of keto diet where the everyday diet is replaced by ketogenic man-made fats, the MCT. MCT is comparatively easier to follow than both of the aforementioned keto diets. Not only does it ensure that healthy fat is consumed by the body, but it also removes the hassle of planning food necessary for keto.
The Modified Atkins Keto Diet
Modified Atkins is another version of the ketogenic diet which is the easiest one to maintain. A modified Atkins ketogenic diet holds no restrictions on the calorie and fluid intake in the body. However, easily digestible sources of calories are restricted from the diet, and carbs intake should be coupled with ample amounts of fat.
Many other variations of Keto diet can be found online as its simplistic approach allows for such freedom. Personalizing keto diet without making any rigorous changes in their daily lives is relatively easier than any other diet plans, however, it requires a proper understanding of how a keto diet works. For this, let’s first understand the process of ketosis.
What is ketosis and what are ketones?
Ketosis is a metabolic state where the body uses fat and ketones as the primary source of calories. When a person limits the number of carbs in their diet, the body in response starts to consume the glucose stored in the liver. Once our body’s stored glucose gets depleted, the liver launches into a ketogenic state and starts breaking fats into acids called ketones to supplement the lack of
Essentially, a keto diet is meant to push the body into the ketogenic state, where the liver starts to break fats to supplement the lack of glycogenic calories. All in all, a Keto diet can facilitate weight-loss, but to what degree and capacity? Let’s discuss in the next section:
How does Keto Diet help in weight-loss?
Many who sought weight-loss have benefited from a keto diet, but even the slightest variation in the diet’s ratio can affect the overall results of your keto cycle. Simply, the keto diet facilitates weight-loss by forcing the body into a ketogenic state where the liver starts to break fat into ketones to supply energy.
With a keto diet, the body starts to rely majorly on the calories produced by breaking down fat in the body. Over time, an overall fall in body fat can be enabled when your body is in the ketogenic state.
However, if you want to reduce fat from specific sections of your body, it is advised that you couple your keto diet with an exercise routine. Targeting fat in specific areas is not possible by following the diet only.
Another factor that affects weight-loss with keto or any other kind of diet routine is the body type of the person. Different body types accumulate fat in different proportions. It is best to seek help from a professional nutritionist and get on a personal keto diet plan.
Benefits of Keto Diet
As Keto is a diet conceptualized to treat patients suffering from Epilepsy, its use and benefits aren’t limited to its efficiency in weight loss. There are many health benefits of following a keto diet unknown to many, a few of them are as follows.
Heart Benefits: Following a keto diet is known to improve cholesterol levels and reduces the risk of heart disease. However, it is advised to consume food containing healthy fats only.
Cancer Treatment: In many cases, a keto diet is prescribed to patients, which supposedly slows down the growth of the tumors. Although not proven, relations have been made between the keto diet and cancer treatment.
Parkinson’s disease: Following a keto diet can be helpful for Parkinson’s patients to soothe many of the effects and side-effects of medication.
Acne: An everyday benefit of following a keto diet is that it helps reducing acne.
As keto diet asks for eating less sugar and processed foods, it helps to reduce the accumulation of unsaturated fat and body insulin.