Every day, it seems as if there’s a new diet available to try. Atkins, Paleo, vegan, vegetarian, low fat, low carb…the list goes on and on. Lately, a diet that’s been getting a lot of attention is the ketogenic diet, or keto diet for short. Is this the best choice for you to meet your weight-loss goals? It might be if you’re looking for something different.
An Intro to the Keto Diet
Also called a low-carb, high-fat diet (LCHF), the keto diet transforms the body into a fat-burning machine. Usually, our bodies use carbohydrates for fuel, but when you drastically cut your daily carb intake while increasing your fat, it puts your body into ketosis. In this state, your body learns to use fat for fuel, so by giving it more fat, you’re training it to feed on that. And that results in weight loss.
A huge change from the standard American diet (SAD), keto can be a challenge to follow for some. But if you are diligent, it may be the best solution for you.
What You Can—and Can’t—Eat
Generally speaking, keto allows you to eat a ton of fats and no more than 20–50 grams of carbs each day, balanced with moderate protein levels. It is probably quite different from how you’re used to eating, but once you get the hang of it, you might find it offers some pretty delicious alternatives.
There are two approaches to keto: dairy rich or dairy free. Some people opt for the Paleo keto diet, which only allows grass-fed butter, while others incorporate butter, sour cream, cream cheese, and various cheeses. No matter which way you go, you can eat meat, fish, eggs, non-starchy vegetables, coconut oil and other non-processed oils such as avocado, berries, lemons and limes, and nuts.
Don’t eat this…
Sugars are out, as are flours and food made with flour, starchy vegetables, fruits (other than those above), legumes, and processed oils.
You can use some substitutions to feed your cravings for those high-carb goodies, though. Erythritol and xylitol take the place of sugar, almond flour and coconut flour can stand in for wheat flours, and even pizza dough can be made from cauliflower. It just takes a little creativity.
The Origins of Keto
While many now use the keto diet to reach their weight-loss goals, it was originally used to treat epileptic children. Before keto, there was a focus on fasting for treatment of epilepsy, and then in the early 1920s, doctors realized that ketones were produced in the liver on an LCHF diet. The original ketogenic diet was built on a 4:1 ratio of fat to combined protein and carbs.
Within the past decade, scientists have begun to research the positive effects of keto on other neurological and neurodegenerative disorders. Given that the brain needs fats to survive, the connection makes sense.
Positive and Negative Effects
There are always goods and bads in everything in life, and keto is no different. The positive effects include increased fat burning, weight loss, increased mental performance, balanced blood sugar, and increased physical endurance.
On the flip side, this diet is not easy to follow. Plus, it can take the body awhile to convert from carb burning to fat burning. Some people who make the switch report flu-like symptoms in the first few days. This “keto flu” occurs as the body detoxes from high carbs, leaving dieters with constipation, hot flashes, headaches, and leg cramps. Rest, perseverance, and lots of water usually help you move through these few uncomfortable days.
Get Even Better Results by Adding CoolSculpting
If you’re taking on a drastic change in your diet by switching to keto, you clearly have strong determination to reach your goals. That’s where CoolSculpting can help. This FDA-cleared procedure is non-invasive and freezes fat cells in targeted areas. That frozen fat is then cleared from the body over a period of time, naturally.
In less than an hour, you will be done with the painless procedure, and your body—and time—will do the rest. Our clients focus their treatments on their hips, thighs, abs, upper arms, and even double chins. Most clients see a difference in a matter of weeks. And with additional treatments, their results are magnified.
Learn more about Bodify, the premier CoolSculpting boutique in Phoenix. We’ll start with a free consultation to find out about you and if this is the right option. And of course, be sure to consult with your doctor before starting the keto diet or any other eating plan.