HOW KETO DIET IMPROVES HEALTH ISSUES
I am sure you heard a lot about about how you are what you eat and about how much your diet impacts your health, etc. And with so many different types of diets out there your are probably wondering which one is the best not only for weight loss, but for your overall wellbeing as well. This question has been bothering me for a few years since many of my family members and friends struggle with weight loss and/or eating disorders. After being interested in how diet impacts our mood, energy and life quality and after talking with so many physicians about this, I came across that keto diet is the one that not only will make us look better but also has enormous benefits over our health.
Ketogenic diets are powerful metabolic tools that help your body switch from burning sugar (carbs) to burning fat. The ketogenic diet is a very low-carb, high-fat diet that involves drastically reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat. This reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis.
The result of that switch in fuel is an improvement in all sorts of health conditions. In practice, you get to eat real foods in the form of natural fats and protein (meat, fish, poultry) while carbohydrates (sugars and starches) are restricted.
There is strong research evidence that these metabolic-affecting diets can be used to treat the numerous medical conditions, but first let’s see the types of ketogenic diets.
Different Types of Ketogenic Diets
There are several versions of the ketogenic diet, including:
- Standard ketogenic diet (SKD): This is a very low-carb, moderate-protein and high-fat diet. It typically contains 75% fat, 20% protein and only 5% carbs.
- Cyclical ketogenic diet (CKD): This diet involves periods of higher-carb refeeds, such as 5 ketogenic days followed by 2 high-carb days.
- Targeted ketogenic diet (TKD): This diet allows you to add carbs around workouts.
- High-protein ketogenic diet: This is similar to a standard ketogenic diet, but includes more protein. The ratio is often 60% fat, 35% protein and 5% carbs.
However, only the standard and high-protein ketogenic diets have been studied extensively. Cyclical or targeted ketogenic diets are more advanced methods and primarily used by bodybuilders or athletes.
Beside loosing weight, studies have shown that low-carb diet fights against different types of cancer.
Cancer cells are dependent upon a constant supply of blood sugar (glucose) to stay alive. Normal cells can use fat-burning by-products called ketones as an alternative fuel when blood glucose is low. But cancer cells can't, so they are dependent upon the sugar (glucose) in your blood stream to fuel themselves. High levels of blood sugar provide more fuel for cancer cells, while low glucose levels starve cancer cells.
Ketogenic diets lower blood glucose while increasing ketone levels, and this creates a metabolic state within the body which effectively starves cancer cells while nourishing normal cells.
Improves Type 2 Diabetes
Eating large amounts of carbohydrate causes blood sugar to spike, which the requires a large amount of insulin to bring it down. The result is that blood sugar crashes. We call this the blood-sugar roller-coaster. More medication and more insulin is needed to control those roller coaster highs and this increases the cost of diabetic care and the likelihood of diabetic complications. The logical solution is to get off the blood sugar roller coaster completely.
Following a low-carb, high fat ketogenic diet stops this blood sugar spike/crash cycle and in many cases, helps you reduce or even eliminate the necessity for medications. It can also greatly reduce insulin needs.
ENHANCING BRAIN ACTIVITY
Our brain needs glucose, as some parts of it can only burn this type of sugar. That's why our liver produces glucose from protein if you don't eat any carbs.
Yet, a large part of your brain can also burn ketones, which are formed during starvation or when carb intake is very low.
This is the mechanism behind the ketogenic diet, which has been used for decades to treat epilepsy in children who don't respond to drug treatment. Moreover, serious attention has been given to ketogenic diet and Alzheimer Disease. Studies have shown that keto diet increases cognition and enhances memory in adults with Alzheimer and Dementia and improves symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
People who have high “bad cholesterol” (LDL) are much more likely to have heart attacks. Keeping blood glucose low and stable, keto diet helps keep your blood pressure in check and lowers your triglyceride levels. A higher consumption of excess carbs is the key driver of increasing your triglycerides in comparison consuming a higher percentage of fat in your diet actually lowers your triglycerides.
Studies have shown that ketogenic diet helps raise your “good cholesterol” (HDL) and improve the profile of “bad cholesterol”. As such, lowering your carb intake can boost your heart health.
Did you know the number one thread to your health is chronic inflammation and the best way to fight it is with a healthy diet? Chronic inflammation is the type that constantly tears down your body’s immune system and increases your susceptibility to serious health conditions.
Chronic inflammation is linked to most diseases, including cardiovascular disease, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, leaky gut syndrome and mental illness.
Your diet is one of the most influential factors in your inflammation levels. Certain foods can trigger inflammatory responses that put stress in your body, weaken your immune system, and prevent your body from functioning at its best. Your best defense against chronic inflammation is adopting a healthy low carb diet. A ketogenic diet in specific has powerful anti-inflammatory benefits.
Improves gastrointestinal health
Your gut microbiome is a key determinant in your digestion––including how your body responds to being on a keto diet. Having a healthy, diverse ecosystem of gut bacteria is crucial for helping your body absorb fats, supporting optimal nutrient absorption, maintaining a healthy metabolism and keeping you energized enough to enjoy life. Recent research has also been conducted about how a ketogenic diet can both increase the abundance of types of beneficial bacteria in the gut, and decrease some of the problematic strains that can lead to temporary inflammation.
There is emerging evidence that the underlying cause of IBD (irritable bowel disease) is a bacterial imbalance in the gut. This is the reasoning behind the ketogenic diet being used to manage symptoms – gut bacteria love sugar and carbs, so by starving them, you can essentially restore balance to your gut bacteria which may reduce symptoms.
Now that you know the benefits and how ketogenic diet improves heath issues maybe you are wondering what should you eat and what should you avoid. Keto can be tricky to stick to for beginners because it’s easy to miss the carb-heavy foods you used to eat, but once you learn which new foods help you stay keto and make you feel your best, it’s simple and tasty to maintain.
While you can find everything you need to start a keto diet for free on the Internet, to really become a keto pro you need to own at least one best ketogenic diet book. To help you find the best ketogenic diet book to suit your wants and needs, read our list of the top 5 available in paperback and e-book form.
The books presented here cover the essentials of keto living, great and easy recipes:
1. The Complete Ketogenic Diet for Beginners: Your Essential Guide to Living the Keto Lifestyle
by Amy Ramos
2. Simply Keto: A Practical Approach to Health & Weight Loss, with 100+ Easy Low-Carb Recipes
by Suzanne Ryan
3. Keto Diet Cookbook For Beginners: 550 Recipes For Busy People on Keto Diet (Keto Diet for Beginners)
by Elizabeth Cunningham
4. The Keto Diet: The Complete Guide to a High-Fat Diet, with More Than 125 Delectable Recipes and 5 Meal Plans to Shed Weight, Heal Your Body, and Regain Confidence
by Leanne Vogel
5. The Complete Keto Diet Cookbook For Beginners 2019: Quick & Easy Recipes For Busy People On The Ketogenic Diet With 21-Day Meal Plan (Keto Cookbook)
by Mandy Cook