As the world grapples with the deadliest ever health crisis, coronavirus, people are taking various steps to enhance their health conditions. Apart from practicing yoga asana and drinking herbal decoction, people are more focused on their healthy diet. Nowadays, lacto-ovo-vegetarian diet, Lacto-vegetarian diet, ovo-vegetarian diet, vegan diet, etc., are pretty much trending.
Apart from all these diet plans, the Ketogenic diet makes headlines among health enthusiasts for its amazing health benefits. So, for those exploring online about the ketogenic diet, we are here with a little help, citing the top benefits the keto diet brings to you. However, let us begin with the basics first.
What is a Ketogenic Diet?
A specific eating plan containing low carbohydrates, high fat, and adequate protein is called the Ketogenic diet, aka keto diet. The primary reason for the keto diet is to increase calorie intake more from fat, not from carbohydrates. The diet protects you against many diseases like obesity, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, epilepsy, etc.
How It Works
A Ketogenic diet replaces the carbohydrate with fat. It depletes the body of its sugar reserves, resulting in molecule production called ketones. When carbohydrate intake is reduced, it breaks down / burns fat for energy while the produced ketones work as fuel, leading to weight loss and protection against several other diseases.
Now, let’s explore the health benefits of the Keto diet in detail.
Best for Weight Loss
The ketogenic diet may help you promote weight loss in several ways. The first, reducing carbohydrate intake is the simplest yet effective way to lose weight. Besides, the keto diet also works effectively to boost metabolism and control appetite. The food it contains controls hunger stimulation hormones, resulting in appetite reduction. A survey in 2017, albeit effective, suggested that those following a ketogenic diet lost 5 lbs more than those on a low-fat diet.
Effective against Metabolic Syndrome
Metabolic syndrome can put you at risk of various serious disorders, including diabetes, heart disease, and others. However, following the ketogenic diet will help you improve the features of metabolic syndrome. A study found that those following a ketogenic diet lost 14% of body fat, though they were on a calorie-restricted ketogenic diet. It helps in controlling cholesterol and reducing blood sugar & blood pressure.
Inflammation refers to the natural immune system of the body and is considered good for fighting infection. But, in some cases or disorder conditions, your immune system triggers inflammation even when there are no infections. In such a situation, inflammation (if chronic) can cause unpleasant symptoms, such as pain, fatigue, swelling, etc. (if inflammation is acute, it may vanish within hours, a day, or two).
Fortunately, the keto diet that produces ketones (that also includes ß-hydroxybutyrate) in your body acts as a strong anti-inflammatory substance. It controls inflammation when triggered unnecessarily. Besides, a ketogenic diet includes anti-inflammatory foods, which help in controlling persistent inflammation.
Control Diabetes & Blood Sugar
Whether it is type 1 and type 2 diabetes, a ketogenic diet helps reduce blood sugar levels significantly. Various studies have found that low carb can control blood sugar levels and may provide other health benefits too.
No doubt, the keto diet includes no sugar and less carbohydrate. It brings an immediate impact on your blood sugar level. When you reduce sugar and carbohydrate intake, you experience a drastic fall in glucose level in your blood. It also helps people with insulin resistance. However, you need to choose the type of keto diet plan based on your health needs. You can take the help of keto diet apps to make the best plan.
Maintain Blood Pressure
The ketogenic diet has a significant impact on blood pressure. It provides well-maintained and balanced blood pressure. According to a study conducted by NIH, those following a ketogenic diet experienced a better and controlled level of blood pressure level than those following a low-fat diet. Besides, the ketogenic diet supports weight loss (we have already explained how the diet helps lose weight, you can revisit the paragraph for better understanding). The ketogenic diet has decreased systolic blood pressure that is good for controlling high blood pressure.
Remember, high blood pressure or hypertension can expose you to various health risks, including heart disease, stroke, and kidney failure. Low-carb diets, such as the keto diet, can effectively control it and reduce the risk factors.
People with bad cholesterol, aka LDL, are prone to heart attacks. Ketogenic diets work as magical remedies for them. It does it by increasing the size of bad LDL cholesterol particles. In heart attacks, the size of the cholesterol particles matters: small size and increased number of particles can put at high risk of a heart attack while larger size reduces the risk significantly. The Keto diet does it by increasing the size of LDL particles and reducing the number of LDL particles.
Brain Health / Epileptic Seizures
Ketogenic is the proven therapeutic treatment for neurological conditions. In 1924, a Mayo Clinic in the USA implemented the keto diet to treat patients with epileptic seizures —a neurological condition. The result was magical: in three months, around 34% of participant patients (all with two or more weekly seizures) reported a 90% decrease in seizures.
Ketogenic contains neuroprotective antioxidants that prevent reactive oxygen (the harmful one that damages the brain). Meanwhile, it increases mitochondrial efficiency that protects brain cells from strokes. Besides protecting brain cells, the keto diet helps prevent neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
Cancer is one of the most deadly diseases and terrifies people. A Ketogenic diet may help you reduce the risk of cancer. At the same time, it can also help in treating some types of cancer when used with traditional treatment methods, which include chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation.
Breast cancer and some other types of cancer have links with elevated blood sugar levels, type 2 diabetes, and obesity. Restricting carbs can help you reduce the chances of getting the victim of this deadly disease.
A Ketogenic diet is one of the best plans today, not just to prevent the diseases but to keep yourself healthy and fit. As you have gone through the various health benefits of the keto diet, it’s your time to make your keto diet plan and stay healthy. Do share your plan in the comment box when you begin. There are so many of our readers who can get inspiration from.