A ketogenic diet or keto diet suggests the intake of more fats and reduce the consumption of carbohydrates. For this reason, it is also known as a LCHF (low carbohydrate high fat) diet. The aim is to improve the overall health by the help of ketosis.
What is Ketosis?
The fats in the liver are broken down to produce ketones. This happens when the food intake is low and body draws energy from the fats instead of the glucose. Very less carbohydrates and more of fats are consumed in the diet. This process is known as ketosis.
Why is Ketosis Beneficial?
It is a natural phenomenon, to which the body adapts when there is scarcity of food. It has been observed that through ketosis the body can improve in a number of medical conditions, like cancer, diabetes, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s and more.
Difference Between Ketosis and Ketoacidosis
Yes, it is important to understand the difference between the two, even experts sometimes get confused with the terms. In ketosis, the release of fatty acids and ketones is regulated because of high fat consumption and low carbohydrates.
On the other hand, ketoacidosis is a medical condition. The production of the ketones is unregulated and in large quantities. The production of insulin is also low to counter the production of excess fatty acids.
A Ketogenic Diet Plan
The carbohydrate intake should be as low as 0.7 oz to 2.11 oz per day. The proteins ought to be limited as per the requirements of the body. The major calories have to come from the fat intake. Ideally, 70-75 percent of the calories must be from the fat, proteins should contribute 20-25% and the remainder from the carbohydrates.
Why Focus More on Fats Rather Than Proteins?
Proteins when consumed in large quantities have a profound negative effect on the blood sugar and insulin production. However, by consuming more of fats there is only a minute effect on the insulin production and blood sugar levels.
As observed in many people who start with the ketogenic diet, the physical performance of the person may be low initially. However, as the body gets a hang of it and starts using fat as a primary source of energy, the body retains back its performance.
Of course, if you are suffering from any medical condition, it is a must to consult your physician before starting a ketogenic diet. A dietician can help you with a tailor made ketogenic diet plan.