The ketogenic diet has gained notoriety among people who want to lose weight. But this also became controversial as some people assert that since ketogenic diet involves eating foods that are high in fat, this diet raises cholesterol levels and can cause heart disease.
However, more and more scientific studies assert that low-carb and ketogenic diets are proved to be effective not only in losing weight but also in improving one’s health. So how does ketogenic diet help improve our health? What happens to our body when we start on this diet?
The ketogenic diet, or keto diet for short, is a low- to no-carb, high-fat diet that involves ketosis. During ketosis, the body uses fat for fuel instead of carbohydrates. You can achieve the metabolic state of ketosis when you limit carb consumption to around 20 to 50 grams per day and eat more foods that are high in fat.
1. Supplies energy for the brain.
A large part of the brain can burn ketones. These ketones are formed when we do not eat anything or when we eat low-carb foods. Ketones supply the brain with energy from ketones that are also found to be therapeutic for some brain disorders like epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, and traumatic brain injuries.
2. Lowers risks of heart disease.
Since ketogenic diet increases high-density lipoprotein (HDL) or “good” cholesterol and lowers blood pressure and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or “bad” cholesterol, it helps lessen developing cardiovascular diseases
3. Reduces blood sugar and insulin levels.
Vegan keto diet is shown to be effective in raising adiponectin levels in the body. Adiponectin is a protein involved in regulating blood sugar and metabolism of fat. A high level of adiponectin reduces inflammation and promotes better blood sugar control.
4. Reduces risk of certain cancers.
Since insulin is a hormone that controls blood sugar, which plays a role in developing cancer, ketogenic diet reduces the risk of insulin complications that may lead to certain cancers. It is also suggested that ketogenic diet may be an ideal complementary treatment alongside chemotherapy in people with cancer.
4. Supports weight loss.
The main reason why people resort to ketogenic diet is to better manage their weight. Several studies suggest that ketogenic diet is more effective in long-term weight loss compared to people who prefer having a low-fat diet. Foods in ketogenic diet tend to make you feel full, reducing hunger-stimulating sensations.
Ketogenic diet is not only effective in weight-loss management, but also beneficial in overall wellbeing as well. It helps improve cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and blood sugar, which reduces the risks of different diseases. When you want to try this diet or if you’re already on keto, make sure that you know the different foods to avoid and which ones are recommended. It is also advisable to complement your keto diet with plant-based foods that are intentionally high in fat and low in carbs.