Recently, there has been a lot of focus on research on the latest craze when it comes to weight management: the ketogenic diet. According to numerous studies, this nutritional approach gives our bodies the ability to burn fat as fuel while also providing other health benefits.
If you are not familiar with the ketogenic diet and other keto-friendly foods, here is a quick summary of what a keto diet is and its top 6 benefits.
What is a ketogenic diet?
Conceived in the 1920s, this low-carb, high-fat diet was originally designed to mimic the beneficial effect of fasting minus the disadvantages that come with the drastic reduction in calories.
Basically, if you are on a ketogenic diet, your body goes into a state of ketosis, which is what happens when the body does not have enough carbohydrates to burn for energy, so it burns fat instead. This is in contrast to a glycolytic state, where the body gets its energy from glucose.
Here are some more benefits of the ketogenic diet:
6) A healthier weight.
Most people are unaware of this, but low-carb, moderate-protein, high-fat diets like keto have been practiced for decades to aid people in reaching a healthy weight. One of the reasons why this diet is very effective is that it can actually reduce appetite due to the satiating nature of fat-rich foods. Another great thing about a high-fat/low-carb diet like keto is that it retrains the body to use fat as energy, therefore allowing the body to tap into its own fat reserves as an energy source.
5) A balanced blood sugar.
Do you wish to have a balanced blood sugar? Then the keto diet is the diet for you. According to various research, low-carb diets encourage healthy blood sugar balance as it limits the intake of sugar and processed grains.
4) Healthier brain function.
Aside from its fat-burning capability, another reason why the keto diet is incredibly popular (especially in high-performance career fields) is because it promotes healthy brain function. One animal study on rats found that a ketogenic diet boosts cognitive performance among the subject animals. Many people from all walks of life who are using the ketogenic diet also attest to the diet’s positive effect on their mental health.
3) Lowers blood triglycerides.
Triglycerides are fat molecules found in blood that may pose as a risk factor for heart diseases if left uncontrolled. Frequent carbohydrate consumption (especially of the simple sugar fructose), has been found to be the main cause of elevated triglycerides. Cutting carbs by adapting the keto diet can dramatically reduce blood triglycerides.
2) Increases good cholesterol.
Dubbed as the good cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein or HDL are lipoproteins that carries cholesterol away from the body and into the liver, where it can be excreted or reused. It is a well-known scientific fact that high levels of HDL can lower your risk of heart disease. One of the best methods to increase your HDL levels is to adapt a high-fat, low-cholesterol diet.
1) Reduces blood sugar and insulin levels.
Whenever we consume carbs, they are immediately broken down into simple sugars in our digestive tract, which then enters our bloodstream, elevating our blood sugar levels in the process. As elevated blood sugars are toxic, our body releases a hormone called insulin, which “commands” the cells to absorb the glucose so they can either store it or burn it. Healthy people have a quick insulin response which prevents blood sugar from spiking. Some people however, have a condition called insulin resistance, which causes the cells to ignore the the insulin and fail to absorb the glucose efficiently. This condition can lead to a disease called type 2 diabetes, which affects about 300 million worldwide today. One simple solution to this problem is to limit carbohydrates from your diet. By doing this, you remove the body’s need for all that insulin as there are only a limited amount of blood sugar in your body. According to research, diabetic people who have adapted a low-carb, high-fat diet are able to reduce or eliminate their glucose-lowering meds within 6 months.