Just like with everything else, Easy Keto starts at the beginning – defining the keto diet.
Without a firm foundation, it is impossible to master a keto diet successfully.
The key to starting a keto diet is understanding the keto diet, how it works, and how to go keto. Without a basic understanding of what going keto means, you can never successfully lose weight and take charge of your health using the keto diet.
In Part One, I am going to tell you all about the keto diet. This includes the keto diet, the benefits of the diet, side effects, and more. The first chapter lays out all the key information for what it means to go keto.
Then, I am going to give you key tips for going keto. Since the first couple of weeks on a new diet is always the hardest, you need key tips and techniques for honing your mindset, so you stick to your keto diet.
The keto diet has become a popular fad for weight loss and quick results. Many people jump on the keto bandwagon without knowing exactly what the keto diet is, how to master it successfully, and why it works so well.
As a result, people quickly switch to a keto diet and give it up even more quickly. With such short bouts of keto dieting, it is impossible to see the results you want. The only way to see the lasting results you want is to live a keto lifestyle.
What is the Keto Diet?
The keto diet is a low-carb diet. It is similar to other low-carb diets, but it requires you to eat even fewer carbs than you would on other diets. Many people find the keto diet incredibly hard to follow because of how restrictive it is on carbohydrate intake.
By lowering your carbohydrate intake, you must make up those calories by eating a high amount of healthy fats and protein. In other words, you make healthy fats and protein the star of your meals, not carbohydrates.
Food like bread, pasta, potatoes, and carrots are removed from your diet, while foods like steak, avocados, and nuts are added. Although cutting out carbohydrates is hard, at least you can still eat a lot of the yummy, filling foods that you love, like burgers and chicken.
The most important aspect of the keto diet is consistency. You will not see any lasting results if you go back and forth on your diet. Of course, the occasional cheat day is permitted, but you must rigidly stick to your low carb diet if you want to see lasting results on your weight and health.
If you stick to the keto diet rigidly, you can expect to see lasting results quickly. The keto diet is wildly praised for how it can make a noticeable difference in a short amount of time.
Ketosis – the Secret to the Keto Diet
You may be wondering, But what makes it so great? The answer to that question is simple – ketosis.
Our bodies are programmed to run on two energy sources – fat and sugar (glucose). When we eat a regular diet filled with carbohydrates, our body prefers to run on glucose. Glucose requires insulin as a transporter and breaks the brain-blood barrier.
Whenever our bodies do not have enough carbohydrates, they naturally use fat as our fuel. Our brains cannot run on fat directly, so our bodies use ketones as fuel. Ketones are a great fuel source, but they don’t require insulin as a transporter and still break the brain-blood barrier.
The process of your body switching over to ketones as a fuel source is known as ketosis. As you probably assumed, the name “keto” comes from ketosis, a metabolic process where our bodies run on fat, not sugar.
Benefits of the Keto Diet
Since the keto diet puts your body in ketosis, you can expect to lose more fat quicker when on the keto diet. This is because ketosis gives you easier access to your fat stores, which in turn makes it easier to burn off.
This is an excellent fact if you are trying to lose weight. Although your weight loss will eventually plateau, the first months you are on keto will dramatically change your weight and body.
The keto diet is good for more than just weight loss, though. Since ketones don’t require insulin as a transporter, the keto diet helps regulate your blood sugar levels. Without the need for as much insulin, your blood sugars can normalize.
Those with diabetes or prediabetes will significantly benefit from the keto diet for this reason. The diet can help regulate their blood sugars so they can decrease their insulin and blood sugar medication.
Another benefit of the keto diet is that you don’t have the peaks and lows of other diet types or a high sugar intake. When you eat a lot of sugar, your body gets a natural high that eventually crashes. When you decrease your carbohydrate intake, your body normalizes better, so you have a more consistent feel.
Similarly, you don’t feel as hungry on the keto diet. Fat takes longer to process than sugar. This means that you will feel full longer when you are on a keto diet. Many keto dieters enjoy this benefit because it means they don’t feel like they’re dieting; they still feel full and satisfied.
Below is a complete list of the benefits of the keto diet:
- Reduces appetite
- Feel fuller longer
- Weight loss
- Decreases triglycerides
- Increases HDL cholesterol
- Decreases LDL cholesterol
- Reduces blood sugar and insulin levels
- Effective against metabolic syndrome
- Benefits brain disorders like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s
Keto Side Effects
Although the keto diet is mostly beneficial for your health and wellbeing, it does come with some side effects as well. Make sure that you recognize these side effects so that you don’t harm yourself in the process of losing weight.
Most people who switch to a keto diet experience something that many people call the keto flu. Although it is not a recognized medical condition, switching to a keto diet can cause flu-like symptoms for the first week or so that you are on the diet.
Vomit, gastrointestinal distress, fatigue, and lethargy are all signs of the keto flu, though they usually pass within a couple of days.
The reason for the keto flu is the adjustment period between switching from sugar fuel to fat fuel. Your body gets tired and worn down in the process, but it quickly adjusts to the change.
Sleeping well, drinking water, and drinking matcha green tea are great ways to bust these symptoms. People on the keto diet also experience diarrhea. This is often due to the gallbladder, the organ associated with fat breakdown, feeling overworked.
Diarrhea can also be due to a lack of fiber, a common problem for those on the keto diet. Eat fiber-rich vegetables or supplements to help lessen this effect.
One of the more severe side effects of the keto diet is ketoacidosis. Though ketoacidosis is unlikely for people without a prior health concern, those with type 1 or type 2 diabetes should only use the keto diet while being monitored by a doctor due to this side effect.
Ketoacidosis is when the body stores too many ketones and the blood becomes too acidic This can cause liver, kidney, and brain damage. Dry mouth, frequent urination, nausea, bad breath, and breathing difficulties are signs of ketoacidosis.
Here is a list of all the adverse side effects that have been reported due to a keto diet:
- Keto flu
- Nausea and vomiting
- Endurance issues
- Vitamin and mineral deficiencies
- Kidney stones
- Hepatic steatosis (fatty liver)
- Hypoproteinemia (low levels of protein in the blood)
Although the list of side effects may be long, most healthy people do not experience any symptoms other than the keto flu. If you are sure to get ample vitamins and minerals, you should be all set.
In the next article, we will cover more of the keto lifestlye