The ketogenic diet is taking the world by storm. This low-carb, high-fat eating plan has been around since the 1920s. Back then, it was used in the treatment of epilepsy.
Today, it’s a popular choice for athletes, fitness models, and dieters alike. In clinical trials, the keto diet reduced body fat, improved blood lipids, and decreased blood sugar levels. Unlike most weight loss plans, it’s safe and sustainable in the long run.
Keto diet essentials are pretty basic. Think lean meat, fatty fish, veggies, nuts, seeds, and heart-healthy fats like coconut oil and olive oil. You can even enjoy an occasional glass of red wine and a few pieces of extra dark chocolate.
In addition to weight loss, ketogenic diets may boost brainpower, reduce inflammation, and protect against type two diabetes. This eating pattern may also help with some types of cancer and suppress tumor growth.
Interested to find out more? Let’s take a closer look at the keto diet and how it benefits your health!
How Does the Keto Diet Work?
The ketogenic diet is low in carbs, moderate in protein, and high in fat. Some versions restrict carbs to roughly 10 grams per day. Others are more flexible, alternating between low- and high-carb days.
Carbohydrates are the body’s primary source of fuel. When you limit them, your body needs to seek alternative energy sources, like fats or protein. Since the keto diet is moderate in protein, you’ll burn fat for energy.
A few days after you switch to this eating pattern, your liver will begin to produce more ketones, such as acetone and acetoacetate.
These compounds are always in the blood, but their levels increase during fasting, prolonged exercise, or carbohydrate restriction.
Ketones build up in the bloodstream as your carb intake decreases. When they reach certain levels, your body enters ketosis and begins to use fat instead of glucose (carbs) for fuel.
Simply put, ketosis is a metabolic state that promotes fat loss.
Beware that it’s not the same as diabetic ketoacidosis, a life-threatening condition. Ketoacidosis occurs when ketone bodies reach dangerously high levels in the blood.
Get Leaner With the Keto Diet
Compared to other diet plans, this eating pattern yields quick results and may improve overall health. Plus, it doesn’t deprive your body of vital nutrients as other diets do.
In one study, obese individuals who switched to the keto diet experienced a significant reduction in body weight, triglycerides, bad cholesterol, and blood glucose levels. Their good cholesterol levels increased.
Another study assessed the effects of a ketogenic diet on body composition and strength in resistance-trained women. Subjects lost body fat and kept the pounds off. Their daily meals were about 10% carbs, 26% protein, and 65% fat.
If you find the standard keto diet too restrictive, you can always try other versions.
The cyclical ketogenic diet, for example, is popular among athletes. This eating plan involves high-carb refeeds that help replenish your glycogen stores so you feel energized and ready for a challenging workout.
The targeted ketogenic diet is a good choice too, especially for active individuals. With this option, you can fill up on carbs around your training sessions.
Healthy Eating Made Easy
Unlike other weight loss plans, the keto diet doesn’t require counting calories or macros. You don’t even need to weigh your food. The key is to eat plenty of fats and keep your carb intake low.
Meal prep is a breeze when you’re on the ketogenic diet. All you have to do is to stock up on keto diet essentials, such as:
- Beef, pork, or lamb
- Game meat
- Organ meat
- Fatty fish and seafood
- Most types of cheese
- Leafy green vegetables
- Coconut oil, olive oil, avocado oil, and more
- Nuts and seeds
- Butter or ghee
- Heavy cream
Believe it or not, you can even have bacon with fried eggs in the morning or whenever hunger strikes. If you’re at work or having a busy schedule, look for keto-friendly meal delivery services in your area.
The benefits of ketogenic diets go beyond weight loss.
You’ll not only get leaner but also lower your risk of type two diabetes, heart disease, metabolic syndrome, and other ailments. This brings us to the next point…
Ketogenic Diets May Protect Against Heart Disease
In the past, there have been doubts expressed about the safety of ketogenic diets. Despite its high-fat content, this eating plan supports cardiovascular health.
For example, one study has found that very-low-carbohydrate diets, such as the keto diet, may improve blood lipids to a greater extent than low-fat diets.
At the same time, they may reduce inflammation, which can further lower your risk of cardiovascular problems.
Sugar has more damaging effects on the heart than dietary fat. In a large-scale study, people who consumed 17 to 21% of their total calories from added sugar had a 38% higher risk of dying from heart disease.
As the researchers note, sugar consumption promotes unhealthy eating patterns, which in turn may raise the risk of cardiometabolic disorders.
This harmful ingredient also triggers inflammation, increases blood pressure, and accelerates aging. Except for trans fats, dietary fat has none of these side effects.
The Keto Diet Keeps Your Brain Sharp
Alzheimer’s disease is often referred to as type III diabetes due to its association with insulin resistance. Furthermore, the risk of developing this disorder is higher in those with metabolic syndrome.
Ketogenic diets may help protect against insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome, leading to a lower risk of Alzheimer’s.
Although more research is needed to confirm these findings, scientists believe that very-low-carb diets may help prevent cognitive decline and improve brain function.
Stock Up on Keto Diet Essentials for Better Health
As you see, this dietary plan does a lot more than just help you lose weight. In fact, it’s one of the few eating patterns backed up by science.
Switching to the keto diet doesn’t have to be difficult. Our meal delivery service makes everything easier.
We only use fresh, locally-sourced ingredients in our chef-crafted dishes. You’ll get hooked from the first bite!
So, are you ready to take this step and lose those pesky pounds? Read more about our meal delivery service, which includes all the keto diet essentials for a balanced, healthy eating plan.
In the meantime, feel free to contact us with any questions you may have!