In this article, while we talk about low carb meal, we will associate the same with keto diet. This low carb meal plan, although it may include keto regimen, is a broad diet plan itself. Yet, we will focus on keto routine as a low carb meal strategy. At any rate, keto diet may also be considered as low carbohydrates meal routine, specifically, among others, designed for healthy weight loss objective.Diet Review: Ketogenic Diet for Weight Loss
What is Keto Diet?
Keto diet is a low carb meal plan that can help you lose weight. It is effective in controlling one’s appetite. Likewise, it helps in burning fat and raising energy levels. The principle behind keto diet is to switch from using glucose, as energy source, to ketones. Ketones are the by-product of fat metabolism.
For anyone who has tried a low-carb diet before, you’ll probably notice how different a ketogenic diet feels. This can be explained by the fact that in most cases a low-carb diet does not eliminate carbohydrates completely.
When your body does not have enough carbohydrates for energy, it burns fats instead. If you are on a low-carb diet for too long, your body becomes adapted to using fats as fuel instead of glucose. When following a ketogenic diet, your body will learn to utilize fat as its main energy source instead of glucose, as mentioned.
Consequently, keto diet is all about controlling your carbohydrates intake and eating foods that are high in fat and low in carbs. Such meal strategy focuses on increasing your fats and protein consumption.
By restricting carbs, your body is forced to burn fat rather than glucose (blood sugar) for energy. This process is called ketosis.
When you eat low-carbohydrate foods, your body produces ketones, which aid in burning fats. Carbohydrates will be the least priority of your body. The latter will now target ketones to fuel your brain and other organs, thereby, converting fats into energy.
What is a Low Carb Diet?
The answer is simple as limiting the amount of carbohydrates that your body is used to ingest. Hence, a low carb meal is a way of eating that reduces carb consumption. There are various forms of this meal plan. One is keto diet. Others are, Atkins, Paleo, or Mediterranean, among others.
But not all carbs are created equal. The main difference between high and low carb foods is the number of grams of carbohydrate in each serving. As a general rule, if you’re looking for a low carb option at a restaurant or market, select one that has 5 to 10 grams of carbs per serving.
What are the Similarities and Differences Between Keto and Low Carb?
Tempted as you may be to try a new diet, make sure that you’re not jumping from one extreme to another. Yes, there are some similarities between keto and low carb, but don’t expect to succeed if you’re switching back and forth between two completely opposite diets.
Keto Diet vs Low Carb Diet
Both diets are very effective in reducing body weight and improving your overall health. They are both low in carbohydrates, which translates into less sugar in the body and more energy for other activities.
Both diets have shown positive effects on insulin sensitivity, blood pressure, triglycerides, cholesterol levels, and more. In some cases, weight loss can be, or even surpass, 20 pounds (9 kg) in one month.
When it comes to weight loss, both diets are equally efficient, when followed correctly. These meal plans will substitute other sources of energy than the calories found in carbs. Fats, therefore, will become the main fuel of the body.
Despite the many similarities between these two diets, there are also significant differences – so much so that they can still be classified as having distinctive characteristics.
A low carb diet restricts carb intake to under 150 grams per day. A keto diet, on the other hand, is a high-fat, adequate-protein, and low-carbohydrate diet. It allows a maximum consumption of 30 grams of carbs per day.
A low carb diet replaces complex carbs (starchy foods) with protein and fat. In contrast, a keto diet reduces your carbohydrates intake by substituting the same with fats.
A low carb diet doesn’t have a cap for carbohydrates as long as you keep your intake at or below 100 grams of carbs per day. While in keto, it is way below that, as stated earlier.
How Keto Diet Works?
The human body is made up of two types of fuel: carbohydrates and fats. When you eat carbs, they break down into glucose. Glucose from carbohydrates is the body’s main source of energy.
The body can store excess glucose as glycogen in the muscles and liver for later use or it can be converted to fat for long-term energy storage. When you don’t eat enough carbohydrates, however, your blood sugar will drop below normal levels.
Your body will metabolize fat for energy, instead, which, in turn, produces compounds called “ketones.”What Should Your Ketone Levels Be? | Carb Manager This process happening to individuals on ketogenic diet has given rise to “keto” parlance. Thus, the birth of what we call Keto Diet Plan.
As mentioned, when your body does not have enough carbohydrates for energy, it burns fats instead. If you are on a low-carb diet for too long, your body becomes adapted to using fats as fuel.
This is how keto meal strategy works. You have to deprive your body substantial amount of carbs, and instead, substitute them with healthy keto-friendly fats, to be used by the body as its fuel.
Can you alternate between Keto and low carb?
You may alternate between keto and low carb in the same day, at least for a short period of time before you get into issues with electrolytes. Nonetheless, there are no clear cut guidelines, and it will depend upon the sensitivity and adaptability of your body, in relation to your goals and objectives.
The first thing to consider is that every person is different and some are more sensitive to health concerns than others. So, if you feel like something isn’t right, that’s the time your body tells you it’s time to stop.
A few months ago I was eating keto, but I was doing one or two days of normal eating each week (low carb). During one of those days, I decided to go out for pizza.
After about an hour I felt like crap so I stopped eating the pizza and after about 30 minutes I felt better (elevated blood sugar messing with my electrolytes).
This is why it’s important to listen to your body because it will let you know when something isn’t right. So, as long as you’re feeling good and not having any health issues, going from keto to low carb, then back to keto (or from low carb to keto), shouldn’t be a matter of concern, especially problems with messed electrolytes or other things going wrong.
Just make sure you listen to your body so that if something feels off or not right, then stop what you are currently doing, as the same may do more harm than good to your overall health.
At any rate, prior to embarking or engaging in any form of diet plans, it is fairly advisable to consult first your health professional, dietician, or nutritionist.
Benefits of Keto Diet
Keto diet is gaining popularity and for a good reason. This diet has been designed to provide the body with clean energy, which is beneficial for your overall health and well-being. In this regard, it is helpful to point out some benefits, among others, of this meal plan and strategy.
You will do away, eventually, unwanted fats in your body, as the same will be utilized as fuels during this keto routine.
Healthy Weight Loss
Subject to certain health limitations, keto diets may often be recommended by doctors to help people lose weight. The reason is that keto recipes give you more food satisfaction in less calories, which results in weight loss without feeling hungry.
Many people stay away from the ketogenic diet because they think it will be too restrictive, or even worse – unhealthy. However, the keto diet comes with a number of health benefits that you might not be aware of. In this article, we’ll discuss nine of these unknown benefits of keto diet.
When your body uses fats for energy, it releases ketones in your bloodstream. It has been found that when the human body is in ketosis state and then starts burning fat for energy, it leads to weight loss.
A caveat though, it will be advisable to not just eat unhealthy fats. There are foods which are replete with sustainable and healthy fats, such as avocados, almonds, chicken meat, red meat (consult first your nutritionist), and other foods which your nutritionist or dietician may recommend as regards your diet plan.
Increased Energy Levels
When you follow keto diet, you will notice significant increase in your energy levels and metabolism. This happens because all the unnecessary carbohydrates are removed from your body. Therefore, it becomes easy to convert fat into fuel, thus, elevating your energy level throughout the day.
The ketogenic diet is basically a high fat, low carb diet. This means that your body will require significantly less energy to perform daily actions compared to those who are on rich carbs diets.
Prevents Heart Disease
Keto diets are often used as a method of controlling heart disease, with studies showing that they can reduce triglycerides and LDL cholesterol significantly. While this isn’t the only way to keep heart disease at bay naturally – it can play an important role in any plan to reduce overall risk factors.Keto Diets and Heart Health: What’s the Risk?
It is best, however, to follow health guidelines aimed at reducing the risk factors of heart ailment.
Reduces Hunger Pangs and Limits Food Cravings
When you follow keto diet, there are no cravings for carbs because your body starts converting fat into energy instead of carbohydrates. That means you don’t have to worry about hunger pangs. The keto meal plan has been designed to reduce food cravings and help people lose weight faster than other methods.
One theory is that when your body enters ketosis or burns fat for fuel, instead of carbs, it releases less insulin, which in turn could cut down on sugar cravings. In addition, by allowing the body to enter a state of ketosis, the ketogenic diet may reduce food cravings, improve mood, enhance concentration and boost energy levels.
Optimal Brain Function
Since keto causes ketosis, which is characterized by an increased generation of ketones in the body, there is a significant increase in brain function. Studies show that when people adopt a ketogenic diet, they experience an improvement in memory and cognitive function.
This indicates that a person who implements the diet will have better thinking skills and more clarity. Ketones are produced as a result of fatty acids being metabolized by the liver. It has been found that these molecules improve cognitive function and support mental performance.
A study published in The Journal of Physiology showed that when mice were fed a ketone diet for two weeks their brain cells showed improved mitochondrial function and increased production of proteins important for synaptic plasticity (improved brain function).
People with diabetes can benefit from Keto Diet
While it is still best to heed the advise, suggestion, and recommendation of health professional and medical doctors, studies may show that keto diet plan may provide health benefits to those who are afflicted with, or may be suffering from, diabetesHow the Ketogenic Diet (keto diet) Works for Type 2 Diabetes (although not in the chronic stage).
With excess carbs being removed from your diet, you will be putting less stress on your body to produce insulin and keep your blood sugar levels stable.
Many people with Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes find that they are able to manage their condition by following a ketogenic diet. Moreover, they find it easier to control their sugar levels once they begin following the keto lifestyle.
How to start Keto Diet?
Starting a keto diet can be challenging. You may be one of those keto dieters who wants to embark on such food routine.Low Carb & Keto Diet Plan: How To Start a Keto Diet This is an extraordinary diet with gainful health benefits, along the way, provided the same is done appropriately.
You have been relying on carbs as your primary fuel source. The human body has to work harder to convert protein into glucose than it does for carbs. Switching from burning carbs to fats [or healthy fat] may let you experience a drop in energy levels or an increase in hunger. You may may now be free from limiting your healthy fat intake.
Consequently, you should try to figure out how to start a ketogenic diet properly. In this regard, make sure you’ve been doing keto for at least two weeks. Some people experience changes in mood and energy levels shortly after starting keto.
However, this is usually more of a “low-carb flu” than anything else. It typically goes away within two weeks. By that time, you should be feeling pretty good on your keto low carb diet. If not, then it’s probably time to make some adjustments.
Ketosis takes time, so don’t try to rush it. Your body still needs a few weeks to fully adapt and learn how to burn fat efficiently for energy. You just have to be patient and give it time. Once you’re in ketosis, you must figure out your personal carb limit.
Everyone is different, so finding the right level will vary from person to person. Ketosis is a metabolic state in which your body burns fat rather than carbohydrates. The ketogenic diet has been used, likewise, as a tool for weight loss, among others.
Keto involves eliminating carbs, including those found in grains, fruit, and starchy vegetables. Instead of these foods, you eat high-fat foods like meat and cheese, along with non-starchy vegetables. It’s important to choose the right ketogenic diet plan for you.
If you’re new to this way of eating, consult first the expert. Then, you select your preference based upon a professional advice.
The ketogenic diet is a low carbohydrate, moderate protein, and high fat-based nutrition plan. As said, it encourages the body to burn fats rather than carbohydrates for energy. This state is called ketosis.
When in ketosis, body begins burning stored body fat for energy instead of carbohydrates. If this happens, your liver converts fatty acids into molecules called ketones. Your body can use as its main source of energy.
You will lose weight without having to follow a very strict diet or count calories. It promotes the rapid loss of water weight through urination. Many people see noticeable results in just a few days. You can eat lots of meat and fat while being on the Keto diet.
Many people are not able to tolerate high amounts of carbohydrates. They have digestive issues like “leaky gut” syndrome or Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
The high-fat nature of a ketogenic diet helps tons of people with these conditions. They stay healthy because they are not consuming large amounts of carbohydrates every day.
Practical tips when starting keto diet
- Ketogenesis occurs when the body burns fat for fuel.
- When in a state of ketosis, the body needs to create more ketones
- It fights off the byproducts of fat burning.
- It is important to control also your protein intake.
- You should eat enough healthy fats so your body can use them as well.
- This can be done by cutting out processed foods and limiting carbohydrates.
- You must know your carb intake especially the net carbs.
- If you are a person who exercises regularly, you still need to control your carbohydrate intake.
- Even though exercise helps burn off fat, it also speeds up the metabolism.
- Do not try to lose weight rapidly while on a ketogenic diet.
- This will do more harm than good to your health.
- Your goal should be to lose 1-2 lbs. per week to maintain a healthy lifestyle and avoid weight regain.
Starting a low carb diet means substituting certain foods for others in your meal plan. You need to learn what foods are good on a low carb diet and how to incorporate them into your day.
We may have given you pointers on how to do this, as well as discuss some of the benefits of a low carb diet. Yet, it is best to align with the needs and sensitivities of your body, and your health goal.
In addition, processed foods are always bad and will cause you to gain weight. If you remove it from your diet and replace it with fresh healthy natural foods your body will become more alkaline and you will burn fat.
Eating healthy meats, butter, and avocados, among other keto foods, and avoiding carbs will help you lose weight and enjoy the benefits of you keto journey.