The Ketogenic Diet Plan
The ketogenic diet plan is a regimen where you consume extremely low to non-existent amounts of carbohydrate. It was first designed in the 1920s and used for the treatment of epilepsy by a team of researchers working at the Johns Hopkins Medical Center. They discovered that fasting and then a low to no-carb diet could effectively reduce seizures in their patients.
The idea was to prolong the beneficial effects of fasting without starving the patients. The result was that, when combined with a mild to moderate exercise regimen, the body produced more growth hormones and used the stored fats as energy before switching over to relying primarily on fats as fuel.
What is the Ketogenic Diet Plan Today?
Ordinarily, the body wants to use sugars as fuel. This allows the metabolism to store fats for later use, and to rely on quick-burning carbohydrates as energy. This is a system our biology has evolved to help us cope with periodic famines. But today, with the abundance of food we enjoy, famines rarely occur. This means we can use the ketogenic diet method to kick our bodies into fat-burning mode and maintain this fat-burning metabolic mode for a long period of time.
The goal of the diet is to get the body to switch over to burning fat for energy, rather than storing fat and burning sugar as energy.
The Benefits of Ketogenesis
What is the ketogenic diet plan and its beneficial effects? Here are a few of them:
The obvious advantage of burning fat instead of sugars is weight loss. When the body no longer has carbs to draw on for energy, it switches into fat-burning mode.
Reduced Risk of Diabetes
By burning fat and strictly reducing sugar intake, the risk of developing diabetes is dramatically reduced.
Reduced Risk of Heart Disease
Recent studies have found that carbohydrates bear a greater responsibility for heart disease and cardiovascular disorders than previously believed, while cholesterols have – in part – a protective role to play in the arteries. Also, testosterone works to convert cholesterol into protein – and the ketogenic diet plan can trigger the production of testosterone.
Reduced Cancer Risk
Simple carbohydrates and, to a lesser extent, complex carbs, are the food of choice for cancer cells. So it stands to reason the eating less sugar reduces the risk of cancer.
Improve Brain Function & Reduced Neurological Disease
Because fat does not burn as “hot” as sugar (i.e. it produces fewer free radicals), brain health can be improved. Also, many of the fats that the keto diet calls for are necessary to protect the brain and develop new neural pathways.
The Ketogenic Diet Plan
The ketogenic diet is simple, but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t challenging. What is the ketogenic diet plan in a simplified and specific explanation? Traditionally, the keto diet meant simply limiting carb intake to 20 to 30 grams a day. Over the years, it has been refined. Today, the standard keto diet consists of between 70 and 80 percent fats, 15 to 20 percent protein, and 5 percent carbs.
One of the things that sets the keto diet apart from other low-carb diets is the absence of a protein-loading component. Most low-carb diets rely on a period of protein loading. But on the keto diet – because carbs are so strictly limited – the body can begin converting protein into sugar. This can thwart the effects of the diet and cancel ketogenesis.
Protein intake should be limited to 1 to 1.5 grams per kilogram of body weight. For example, a woman weighing 150 pounds should get eat between 68 and 102 grams of protein each day.
Water intake should also be increased to avoid feelings of lethargy and to help facilitate the switch from sugar burning to fat burning.
The Keto Food List
A lot of people struggle with this very challenging diet. After understanding the ketogenic diet plan, it can be a great help to know what’s on the keto food list from the outset.
- Fats & Oils. Try to get your fat from natural sources like meat and nuts. Supplement with saturated and monounsaturated fats like coconut oil, butter, and olive oil.
- Protein. Organic and grass-fed meat is best. Remember, too much protein can cancel ketogenesis.
- Vegetables. Above-ground vegetables are best – and leafy/green items are ideal.
- Dairy. Most dairy is okay, but be sure to get full-fat dairy items. Hard cheeses tend to contain fewer carbs.
- Nuts and Seeds. These should be eaten in moderation. Try using fattier nuts such as macadamias and almonds.
- Beverages. Try to stick to water. You may flavor it with stevia-based flavorings or a citrus juice.
Foods to avoid:
- Trans Fats
- Low-Fat Foods
- Processed Food Products
Side Effects – Keto Flu
The “Keto Flu” is a major roadblock for a lot of people. Getting “kicked out” of ketogenesis can happen very easily – which means you may experience the keto flu every time you enter ketosis.
Symptoms of Keto Flu include:
- bad breath
- brain fog
- sleep disturbance
- lower libido
All of this can seem pretty discouraging at first. But at worst, keto flu will last only three to four days. This is the result of the time when your body is switching from one fuel source to another. Some dietitians go so far as to call it a sugar withdrawal period.
Good ways to reduce the severity and length of the keto flu is to take an alkaline diet, reduce exercise temporarily, take a bone broth supplement, increase electrolytes, eat more healthy fats, and most of all, drink more water.
Many people report using their fear of the keto flu as motivation to avoid falling out of ketogenesis. Because this extreme low-carb diet can be especially challenging to adhere to, there are a number of dietary supplements that can be used to help keep you in ketosis, such as BHB Boost.
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