Keto Diet – What We Know and What We Should Know?
Who does not know about the keto diet and its overrated effects on the body? There are a lot of myths and rumors regarding its marvelous efficacy and the side effects this diet may impose on our health. There is a lot that we already know about this diet but are those really worth-believing or just some gossips? Here is a brief review of what we know and what should we know about the keto diet!
We know that:
Keto diet is the short form for “ketogenic diet” named after its property to generate ketone bodies. This diet majorly focuses on high fat intake and low to zero inclusion of carbohydrates in the daily diet. This way our body gets short of its primary source for energy production, which is glucose and starts burning down the body fat to produce ketones/ketone bodies. These ketone bodies are then used by the body for energy production; a process known as ketosis.
Due to a high proportion of good fats in it, the keto diet can be suggested for several health problems but it is mostly known and used for weight loss. The ability of the keto diet to induce fat breakdown has led to its use in weight loss programs. Moreover, the rich content of good fats present in the keto diet makes it useful in the management of brain health, blood pressure, and other heart-related problems.
Furthermore, the potentially low concentration of carbohydrates in the keto diet makes it highly recommended to use in hyperglycemia (abnormally high levels of sugar) or diabetes. The food options that are recommended to use in ketogenic composition are nuts, olives, seeds, meat, eggs, cheese, avocados, low-carb veggies, and healthy oils (flaxseed oil, olive oil, fish oil, etc.).
What we should know:
Ketosis does not start immediately after starting the keto diet and it takes 3-4 days for our body to start ketogenesis. The thing to consider is the acidic nature of ketone bodies that may change the blood pH (ketoacidosis), as well, when produced in large amounts. Therefore, it is suggested that the keto diet pattern should not be followed for a longer period.
Another important thing that we need to know is that the keto diet was originally designed for epileptic patients, and not for weight loss purposes. Actually, the epileptic patients are reactive towards carbohydrates and therefore they are switched to a diet that is low in carbs and high in brain-friendly foods. Omega fatty acids present in good fats are known to be beneficial in improving and maintaining brain functions.
Apart from the acidic pH, there are some other known reasons as well which support the idea of restricting the use of the keto diet to a shorter time period.
• The long-term use of the keto diet can cause deficiency of several nutrients in the body.
• The excessive intake of fat can alter the normal functioning of the liver and kidneys.
• Due to the presence of high-fat portions, this diet will consume more water than a normal diet and thus can lead to dehydration or electrolyte imbalance in the body.
• In the initial days, the keto diet may also result in stomach problems known as keto flu.
The takeaway message
No doubt, the keto diet is known to be a highly useful diet in the management of several health problems but it is always wise to use everything in moderation, even though it’s a diet combination. On the other hand, the side effects imposed by the keto diet do not mean that it should not be used at all, in fact when used with a balanced proportion, this diet can actually do wonders.