A ketogenic diet is low in carbohydrates and high in fats. Replace all breads and sugary cereals with avocados, butter, and fatty cuts of meat. When you deplete your glycogen stores, your body adapts to using fat for fuel and generates ketones, which are a slower burning fuel source in comparison to glucose. This reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis.
How Do You Get Into Ketosis?
Here’s how it works:
- Consumption of glucose from carbohydrate foods — grains, starchy vegetables, fruit, etc. — is cut way down.
- This forces your body to find an alternative fuel source: fat (think avocados, coconut oil, salmon).
- Meanwhile, in the absence of glucose, the body also starts to burn fat and produces ketones instead.
- Once ketone levels in the blood rise to a certain point, you enter into a state of ketosis.
- This state of high ketone levels results in quick and consistent weight loss until you reach a healthy, stable body weight.
If you change your fuel source from carbs to fats, you will experience the following benefits:
- Sustained energy
- Less cravings
- Mental clarity
- Reduced inflammation
- Weight Loss
- Controlled Blood Sugar
- Insulin Resistance
- Less Acne
The keto diet works for such a high percentage of people because it targets several key, underlying causes of weight gain — including hormonal imbalances, especially insulin resistance coupled with high blood sugar levels.
Different Types of Ketogenic Diets
There are several versions of the ketogenic diet, including:
- Standard ketogenic diet (SKD): This is a very low-carb, moderate-protein and high-fat diet. It typically contains 75% fat, 20% protein and only 5% carbs.
- Cyclical ketogenic diet (CKD): This diet involves periods of higher-carb refeeds, such as 5 ketogenic days followed by 2 high-carb days.
- Targeted ketogenic diet (TKD): This diet allows you to add carbs around workouts.
- High-protein ketogenic diet: This is similar to a standard ketogenic diet, but includes more protein. The ratio is often 60% fat, 35% protein and 5% carbs.
How to Start the Keto Diet
1. Talk to Your Doctor Or a Professional
2. Calculate Your Macros
3. Start Eating a Keto Diet
Eat the following foods:
- Full-fat dairy
- Natural oils like olive and coconut oil
- Vegetables that grow above ground like lettuce, spinach, and broccoli.
Avoid the following foods:
- Sugar and starches
- Potatoes and other root vegetables
- High-sugar fruit
4. Don’t Restrict Calories
5. Keep Protein Intake Moderate
6. Don’t be Afraid of Fat
You may be thinking, “but eating a lot of fat is bad!” Most fats are good and are essential to our health. Fats (fatty acids) and protein (amino acids) are essential for survival. Fats are the most efficient form of energy and each gram contains about 9 calories, compared to 4 calories per gram of protein and carbohydrates.
I mean, what’s not to enjoy about bacon and eggs in the morning?