Ketosis is a completely normal metabolic function. Essentially, when your body doesn’t have enough glucose for energy, it will burn stored fat instead. Glucose is created when carbohydrates are broken down inside your body. Cutting carbs from your diet means less glucose for your body to burn up.
Replacing carbs with fats will cause acids called ketones to build up in your body. The goal is to force the body to derive its fuel from fat, rather than carbs.
While your body is in ketosis, it becomes extremely efficient at burning fat. Ketogenic diets can trigger major reductions in your blood sugar and insulin levels, which has additional health benefits.
Keto for Weight Loss
Ketogenic diets are effective for losing weight and lowering risk factors for certain diseases. While low-fat diets are traditionally recommended for those looking to shed pounds, research shows that keto is, in fact, a superior approach to weight loss.
Unlike many diets, keto will not leave you feeling hungry after eating a pre-set number of calories for the day. Keto is a satisfying and filling method of dieting. In fact, you can lose weight without tracking calories—something that deters many people from adhering to other diets.
in ketosis but not losing weight
There are several reasons why keto is more efficient than a low-fat diet, including increased protein intake. Higher protein intake is advantageous for weight reduction and metabolic health.
Quick Keto Facts
• Ketosis occurs when the body is denied access to glucose, its main fuel source.
• In ketosis, stored fat is broken down for energy, producing ketones.
• Some people use a ketogenic diet to lose weight by forcing their body to burn surplus fat stores.
• The ketogenic diet was originally developed in the 1920’s to treat epilepsy but was inadvertently discovered to offer many other health benefits.
• There are multiple variations of the ketogenic diet.
Types of Ketogenic Diets
• Classic Keto: The strictest form of keto, classic keto requires a 4:1 ratio of fats to carbs or protein. This is a structured, individualized plan in which your diet will consist of 90% fat. Foods are usually weighed when following this regimen.
• Modified Keto: The modified version of the diet is intended to be less restrictive. It might be a good place to start if you’re new to keto, or if you’ve done classic keto for a long time and you’re trying to taper down to a more sustainable, long-term eating regimen.
• MCT: This version allows for a higher protein and carb intake than classic keto. MCT is short for Medium Chain Triglycerides, or highly ketogenic man-made fats.
• Modified Atkins: Carbs are limited in modified Atkins, while fat is encouraged. Protein is not limited at all. When you do consume carbs on this diet, fats should accompany them.
• Intermittent Fasting: This dietary intervention launches the body into ketosis by shortening the window of time that you eat during the day. For instance, you may only eat during an 8-hour window of the day, and fast for the other 16 hours. This forces the body to burn energy from fat.
Only the classic and high-protein ketogenic diets have been researched and studied extensively by professionals. Other, more advanced, versions of keto are primarily used by bodybuilders and elite athletes. Since the classic method is the most researched, it is often the most recommended.
so tired on ketogenic diet
Other Health Benefits of Keto
The ketogenic diet was originally created to treat neurological diseases like epilepsy. Over the last century, countless studies have been performed to examine the other health benefits of ketogenic diets. Keto has been shown to offer benefits for a myriad of health conditions:
• Heart disease: The ketogenic diet can improve cholesterol levels and reduce body fat and blood sugar—all risk factors for heart disease.
• Cancer: Keto is currently being used to treat cancers and slow the growth of tumors.
• Alzheimer’s disease: Keto may reduce the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease or slow its advancement. Research is ongoing.
• Epilepsy: Research has indicated that the ketogenic diet can cause a sizeable reduction in the number of seizures experienced by epileptic children.
• Parkinson’s disease: One study produced evidence that the diet helped improve Parkinson’s disease symptoms, though more research is needed.
• Polycystic ovary syndrome: Keto can lower insulin levels, which may play a role in treating polycystic ovary syndrome.
• Brain injuries: One study conducted on animals found that keto can aid in concussion recovery and post-brain injury recovery.
• Acne: Eating less sugar and processed foods (lower insulin levels) helps improve acne and reduce the frequency of breakouts.
• Diabetes: Keto can increase insulin sensitivity and fat loss, which are significant benefits for people with type 2 diabetes (or prediabetes).
Research in several of these areas is not conclusive, and more evidence is needed to support keto’s other health benefits. It is quite intriguing, though, that a diet originally developed to treat neurological disorders has been adapted for weight loss, and could potentially be further developed to treat a large number of human ailments.
keto and intermittent fasting success
Foods to Avoid in Keto
Any food that is high in carbohydrates should be limited or removed while attempting to achieve ketosis. Some of these foods include:
• Sugary foods: Cake, ice cream, candy, soda, fruit juice
• Grains or starches: Cereal, pasta, rice, wheat-based foods
• Fruit: All fruit should be eliminated, with the exception of small portions of berries.
• Beans: Peas, kidney beans, legumes, chickpeas, lentils
• Root vegetables: Potatoes, carrots, sweet potatoes
• Low-fat packaged products: These “diet” products are highly processed and usually pack a lot of carbs.
• Condiments and sauces: Many condiments and sauces contain sugar or unhealthy fats. Check the labels!
• Unhealthy fats: Limit things like vegetable oil and mayonnaise.
• Alcohol: Alcoholic beverages are high in carbs, which can take your body out of ketosis.
• Sugar-free diet foods: These products can be high in sugar alcohols, which affect ketone levels. They’re highly processed, too.
You should base most of your meals on these types of foods:
• Meat: Steak, ham, chicken, sausage, bacon, turkey
• Fatty fish: Trout, tuna, mackerel, salmon
• Eggs: Pastured and omega-3 whole eggs
• Butter and cream: Products of grass-fed animals, if possible.
• Cheese: Unprocessed cheddar, cream, goat, blue or mozzarella
• Nuts and seeds: Almonds, flax seeds, walnuts, chia and pumpkin seeds
• Healthy oils: Mainly extra virgin olive oil, but coconut and avocado oil are ok, too.
• Avocados: Whole avocado or fresh guacamole
• Low-carb veggies: Greens, tomatoes, peppers, onions
• Condiments: Salt, pepper, healthy herbs
In keto and most healthy diets, it’s best to base your meals on whole, one-ingredient foods. To learn more about keto-friendly, low-carb foods, check out this list: Ketogenic diet foods – what to eat.
Always try to rotate your vegetables and meats to reduce boredom and maximize your nutritional intake. You can eat a variety of delicious and nutritious meals when following a ketogenic diet plan.
Keto Snacks to Enjoy!
As with any dietary plan, you might get hungry between meals. When those snack cravings hit, make sure you reach for something that is keto-friendly, so as to maintain the state of ketosis achieved through your regular meals.
lazy keto for beginners
Here are some healthy and keto-friendly snack ideas:
• Fatty meat
• Fatty fish
• Unprocessed cheeses (optionally, add olives)
• A small handful of seeds or nuts
• One or two hard-boiled eggs
• Dark chocolate (90%)
• A low-carb milkshake (add almond milk, nut butter, and cocoa powder)
• Full-fat yogurt with nut butter or cocoa powder
• Strawberries with cream from grass-fed animal sources
• Celery dipped in salsa or guacamole
• Small portions of leftover dinners
When dining out, it’s usually pretty easy to make most restaurant meals keto-friendly. Most restaurants feature meat or fish-based dishes. Order one of these plates and substitute any high-carb side dishes for vegetables.
Egg-based meals, such as omelets or eggs and bacon, are also a great choice. They’re not just good for breakfast—they can be dinner, too!
Another keto favorite is the bun-less burger. Try swapping a side of fries for vegetables and adding avocado, bacon, or extra cheese to the burger. At Mexican restaurants, you can eat any type of meat on the menu. You can also add extra cheeses, salsa, guacamole, or sour cream. For dessert, try a mixed cheese place or berries and cream.
Why the Ketogenic Diet Impacts Fat Burn
Keto can help you lose weight and make some positive changes to your life. The high-fat, low-carb diet has gained a lot of popularity in recent years, creating an entire community of keto-praising eaters.
Unlike with calorie restriction, keto helps you lose weight by putting your body into ketosis. When you eat minimal carbohydrates, your body produces ketones for energy. Ketones are made in your liver from fatty acids found in food or your own body fat. Therefore, your liver actually burns fat to make ketones. Ketones are used for energy in lieu of carbs.
As your body steadily burns fat as a fuel source, you will start to lose weight. You may be wondering if keto can target specific problem areas, such as belly fat. Burning belly fat is high on the priority list for many people. The fat in your belly is visceral fat, which is a dangerous type of fat that lives deep inside the abdomen, encasing your internal organs. Visceral fat is linked to heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Technically, you can’t spot-target fat areas for reduction. Your body decides where weight loss will occur. However, keto may be useful for eliminating stubborn belly fat.
keto smoothie for constipation recipes
Belly fat, or visceral fat, comes from a combination of genes and a diet high in refined carbs and sugar. Visceral fat can easily become inflamed, making it incredibly stubborn to lose and dangerous to surrounding blood vessels. A well-formulated keto regimen has strong anti-inflammatory effects, making it easier to drop stubborn belly fat.
Keto alone likely will not be enough to lose a large amount of fat. Keto works well in combination with high-intensity interval training (HIIT) exercises. Always consult with your doctor before beginning any new diet or exercise plan.