The ketogenic diet is essentially a very low-carb diet in which your body is forced to rely on ketones, the byproducts of fat metabolism, for energy (this process is called ketosis). Following this diet is very difficult because it will feel initially very uncomfortable during the process when your body must undergo a transition to burning fat rather than carbs (sugar) for fuel. You will feel like you're starving during the process. Symptoms may include fatigue, weakness, irritability, reduced libido, and constipation. Your caloric intake must be severely reduced as a result of dramatic carb restriction and your fat and protein intake must increase to offset the carb restriction. Typically, the macronutrient breakdown looks like the following:
Here are the recommended foods you should eat:
Here are the foods you should avoid eating:
The benefits of following the ketogenic diet include:
The risks of following the ketogenic diet include:
Since ketones can be toxic in the body, exercise is recommended to burn the ketones for fuel.
BOTTOM LINE: The ketogenic diet is very effective at quickly reducing bodyweight and perhaps reducing the symptoms of epilepsy. Fitness and figure competitors essentially follow the ketogenic (very low carb) diet within the last few weeks before their competition to lean out and to make their muscles look very defined. Unfortunately the diet is extremely difficult to maintain because of the discomfort of starving. Also, the list of undesirable side-effects is fairly long with the most unhealthy side-effects being kidney stones and pancreatitis. The ketogenic diet is not for everyone so approval from a dietitian is recommended. The diet is not recommended for the long term because compliance is typically very low.
Brian Danley, CFT
"Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going."
Brian Danley, CFT "Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going." 408-688-1586 (cell) briandanleyfitness.com https://www.linkedin.com/in/briandanleyfitness https://www.facebook.com/BrianDanleyFitness
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