Diet Mythbusting

The Pros and Cons of a Keto Diet

“Keto” is the new buzz word to have hit the nutritional industry. From advertisements and social media to celebrities and famous personalities, everybody seems to be raving about it. However, the diet isn’t new but it, for some reason, has gained immense popularity in recent times. If you want to understand how ketogenic diet works then know this that it is a stricter version of a low-carb diet that we all are familiar with.

How does keto diet work?

The ketogenic diet is based on our body’s ability to enter the state of ketosis when made to function without sufficient carbohydrates. The human body stores the excess energy in the form of fats. They are then released in the form of ketones to create fuel if given the right environment. This process is done in the absence of carbohydrates by the liver. Keto diet works on the driving body to this state by depriving it of carbohydrates and continuing to feed a very small amount of this food group to ensure that the body continues to use its fat reserves.

As per ketogenic diet, the following rules are to be strictly followed if you want to stay in the fat burning state:

Net Carbohydrates: 25-35g

The remaining calories are divided in the following manner:

Protein: 5 to 10%

Rest: Natural Fats

If you continue to follow this strict pattern of eating within this prescribed range, then you are sure to see some effective results and that too in a very small amount of time.  But is this diet really worth it? Let us discuss some of its pros and cons in a little detail.

Cons

Some of the drawbacks that one might face with the ketogenic diet are:

  • It is very hard to follow. You have now developed an idea of how strict the diet is with an acceptable range of carbs, which is just equivalent to one medium size apple in reality. Moreover, it allows only a limited number of fruits and vegetables that make it even more difficult and boring. With so many restrictions, you need to always walk around with a calorie calculator to ensure that your macros are in check and within a safe
  • While you might think that you can get away with eating all kinds of fats, this is not the right approach as well. You are only allowed to eat unsaturated fats that come from animal and vegetable sources only. It is true that with carbs out of the equation, the fats become less dangerous but eating wrong kinds of fats is still equally harmful. The kind of fats that are allowed should only be sourced from grass-fed animals or be totally organic for them to be acceptable and worth the hassle.
  • Since you are taking lots of fat and protein and playing with the natural functioning of your body, you might face issues with digestion a lot. It can cause severe constipation, heartburn and is not heart healthy as well. It is highly suggested that you use lots of fiber and water in your diet to ensure that you face minimal issues while working with this diet.

Pros

However, the keto diet is not so bad too at the end of the bad. If you are doing it with your doctor’s approval and under his supervision, it can actually bring forth good results and that too really fast.

  • The diet has been effective in women who suffer from PCOs and other hormonal issues.
  • The benefits of this diet are not just limited to weight loss. It helps regulate the levels of bad cholesterol in the body and monitors the sugar levels in our blood very effectively.
  • There are some references to this diet being effective in preventing and treating various kinds of cancers in humans.
  • It is even helpful for people who suffer from epilepsy and has shown remarkable results in decreasing the frequency of seizures in people in such people.

With all this said, we still cannot deny that the long-term effects of this diet are still not known to us. Thus, continuing it for a long period of time is not advised as is the case with any other fad diet.

When it comes to losing weight, you cannot expect shortcuts to work. It has to be achieved the right way following the right path: eat healthily, exercise daily and stay happy. It is only when you bring an overall positive change in your lifestyle should you expect to see good results that would last for a long time with you.

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