Nowadays there seems to be a lot of awareness regarding fitness. People are realizing that obesity can lead to a lot of chronic disorders like hypertension, diabetes, and many other cardiac diseases.
If not for health issues people have started dieting and exercising to become slim so they can look good. It is sad to know that some of the young girls out there are trying out crash diets to get quicker results. But what they don’t understand is that these diets cause more harm than good. A new craze that has come up is the “keto diet”.
What is Keto diet?
To understand how a keto diet works, it is important to know how our body consumes energy. It is easier for our body to utilize glucose ( carbohydrates) as they are easier to break down. So when we eat food it’s the glucose which is used up and the fat (lipid) gets stored. In a state of starvation, our body makes use of the stored fat to produce energy and in the process, ketones are released. Our body is said to be in a state of ketosis. This concept forms the basis of your keto diet.
It states that if you keep your carbohydrate intake to a minimum, your body will be forced to use up the stored fat. Thus getting rid of the unwanted fat. So a keto diet consists of high fat, adequate protein, and low carbohydrate foods.
It is interesting to know that a keto diet was originally used to treat epilepsy in pediatric age group. And a less strict diet can be used to treat epilepsy in adults.
What can you eat?
Foods high in fat like:
- coconut and coconut milk or oil
- olive oil and any other oil
- nuts and nut butter
- egg yolks
Green leafy vegetables can be included as they have fewer carbohydrates but they are rich in nutrition.
- The obvious thing is, you lose weight effectively as your stored fat is getting depleted. And also because of the water retention due to carbohydrates is avoided.
- As fats are used as a source of energy, the proteins that you eat are used better.
- It also helps to decrease appetite.
- Insulin levels also decrease.
- Increased levels of insulin tend to increase inflammation. Hence reduced insulin levels will cause lesser inflammation.
- It is not an ideal diet to follow nor is it easy. There are a lot of side effects and complications, especially during the transition from a normal diet to a keto diet.
- In the short term, it can lead to constipation and hypoglycemia( decreased blood sugar levels).
- Initially, you will experience a lot of fatigue but once you get used to the diet and the blood sugar stabilizes, you go back to normal
- .Over the long term it can lead to nutritional deficiencies. Hence one has to take nutritional supplements.
- In some cases, it can lead to kidney stones.
- The lipid profile (cholesterol) is also disturbed due to the high fat intake.
- The proportion of fiber is less than required.
It is always advisable to consult a proper nutritionist or/and a physician before starting this diet. Follow-ups are a must. Drink lots of water when on this diet. And obviously, cardio exercises should be a part of your daily routine to get maximum benefits.
In today’s time, everyone is looking for quick results, but a moment should be taken to consider the health effects of the decisions that you make.
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