What is Keto diet?
The Keto diet is basically an eating plan that is high in fats, moderated in protein, and has a low carbohydrate content. The simple idea behind this diet is the fact that when simple carbohydrates or sugar consumed by the body is reduced drastically per day, the body switches over to converting fat to ketones, which is then used by the body for energy.
Benefits of Keto diet?
Since the goal of the Keto diet is to get more calories from fats than from Carbs, it has been known for its numerous health benefits, such as its support for weight loss and the improvement of one’s general health. Below are some of the benefits of the Keto diet and what you should expect when you engage in it.
Supports Weight loss
According to numerous studies carried out, people on high fats and low carbs diet tend to burn fat faster than those on high carbs and low-fat diets. This is primarily one of the goals of the keto diet and equally one of the main reasons most persons engaged it. The following helps to understand why weight loss is much easier to accomplish with the Keto diet than with other diets.
The Keto diet composition is close to 5% or less in carbohydrates, 20% in protein, and 75% in fat. You tend to experience increased satiation, reduced cravings, inadequate blood sugar swings due to the high-fat content and inadequate amount of sugar found in the diet. What increased satiation does to the body is to cause you to eat less. Also, removing the grains from the diet of individuals who are very responsive to grains would lead to an increased ability to take in minerals like potassium and magnesium, which would cause your body to experience fewer cravings and be more nourished.
When your body no longer has a sufficient amount of glycogen sugar to fuel its energy, it simply enters the Ketosis state. Usually, the glycogen house in the human body stores about 2000 calories to be used when the body experiences glucose depletion. With the glucose now out of the way, the body turns to its fat store. The fat is being converted by the liver into ketones, which the body now uses as fuel for its energy. This is what makes the Keto diet very unique as far as weight loss is concerned.
It is also quite important to note here that consuming more calories than you should only lead to more weight as against losing it. So, keep your meal consumption around fatty foods and, in so doing, experience major weight loss.
In the early 20th century, Dr. Russel W put together the keto diet, and it was used to treat epilepsy. Based on its success, it is now used for treating other brain disorders. A poor brain function will only get your boss on your neck, lead to experiencing inadequate job satisfaction, experiencing depression, or lessened work productivity. As such, the balancing of Omega 3s and Omega 6s by the keto diet is so essential for maximum brain functions. According to research, Ketones are a more effective source of brain fuel than glucose. (Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5102124/). Other studies have shown that the Keto diet help with a disease like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s by improving cognitive impairment.
Better Blood Pressure
First of all, the Keto diet is not difficult to get on; all that is required is a willingness. People who have engaged in the Keto diet discovered that they stopped taking blood pressure drugs. Reason being that the Keto diet helps to lower your blood pressure when you are on it.
Potential Cancer treatment
One diagnosed with cancer does experience lengthened survival time and slower tumor growth when the Keto diet is being engaged.
Your Cholesterol level is Improved
Over time, too much bad cholesterols (LDL) in your blood build up in your arteries leading to Atherosclerosis, which is a type of heart disease. Since bad cholesterol is a major risk factor for heart disease, engaging the Keto diet helps to boost the level of healthy cholesterol in your body while at the same time causes a drop in the level of bad cholesterol in your bloodstream.
Reduction of blood sugar and Insulin
The essence of the Keto diet is a reduction in carbs, moderate protein, and more fat. Since the consumption of carbs is reduced, the insulin level and the blood sugar level will also be lowered. Those suffering from type 2 diabetes benefit more from this as the Keto diet helps to eliminate the high levels of insulin build up in the bloodstream by taking excess sugar away from your diet. With the Keto diet, you won’t have a need for diabetic insulin injections anymore.
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Keto diet Plan
This is a simple keto diet plan majorly for beginners with about 21.4g of net carbs.
Breakfast (4.6g of net carbs)
Egg scrambled with sautéed onions and cheddar cheese
Snacks (1g of net carb)
Atkins French Vanilla shake
Lunch (6g of net carbs)
Grilled chicken over tomato, baby spinach, and avocado salad
Snacks (4.4g of net carbs)
1 cup of sliced red bell pepper with 2 tablespoon ranch dressings
Dinner (5.4g of net carbs)
5 oz hamburger, 1 small tomato, 1 oz pepper Jack cheese, 1/2 Hass avocado, 2 romaine lettuce leaves
Keto diet foods
The following are some healthy food to eat while on a keto diet.
Low carb Vegetables
Vegetables that are not starchy in nature have so many high nutrients, among which vitamin C and other minerals are a part. They are equally low in carbs and calories. Like other carbs, vegetables contain fiber, which the body absorbs because it cannot digest it. Consider the digestible carb count state of the vegetables you are getting. These are the carbs that your body can easily absorb.
According to a Trusted source, the net carb count (which is total carb minus fiber) for non-starchy vegetables varies from less than 1 gram for a cup of spinach to 7 grams per cup of cooked Brussels sprouts.
So, be mindful when you consume starchy vegetables like yams, beets, or even potatoes, as they have the potential to increase your carb limit for the day.
Also, low carb vegetables can be used instead of high carb foods like spaghetti squash, acting as a natural substitute for spaghetti.
The following keto vegetables should be considered an addition to your keto diet meal plans; avocado, broccoli, cucumber, cabbage, asparagus, spinach, tomatoes, olives, e.t.c.
Meat and Poultry
Meat and poultry that are fresh contain vitamin B with other minerals, and it has no-carb (Trusted Source). During a low carb diet, according to these trusted sources, meat and poultry are known for preserving muscle mass because of its high-quality protein content.
So, as against choosing grain-fed meat, go for grass-fed meat, which according to research, animals that feed on grass produce meat rich in omega-3 fats, antioxidants, and linoleic as compared to its grain-fed counterpart.
This is an ideal Keto diet food since one egg contains about 6 grams of protein and less than 1 gram of carbs. (Trusted Source). Studies have shown that eggs can incite hormones that cause the feelings of satiety and fullness to rise. Most of the egg’s nutrients are found in the yolk, containing zeaxanthin and antioxidant lutein, which acts as a protective shield to the eyes. And the best way to get this nutrient is to eat the whole egg.
It is quite important to note here that the yolk of an egg is very rich in high cholesterol, which helps in modifying the LDL particle size in such a way that the risk of heart disease is completely eliminated.
Cheese is a perfect keto diet food because it is rich and high in fat while very low in carbs. Some studies have shown that cheese being high in saturated fats protects you against heart disease compared to increasing the risk of it. Also, with aging comes the loss of body mass. So, the consumption of cheese on a regular basis helps fight against it.
In line with a 12-weeks study carried out according to a Trusted Source, it was seen that the individuals who ate 210g of ricotta cheese every day over the course of the study experienced less muscle mass. Below is some cheese for the keto diet;
Brie, Blue cheese, Cheddar, Cottage cheese, goat cheese, Havarti, Cream cheese, Swiss, String cheese e.t.c.
Other keto diet foods to consider are
- Seafood such as your fish, clams, oysters, squid, e.t.c
- Plain Greek yogurt
- Nuts and seeds like Cashew, Brazil nuts, Almonds, Walnuts e.t.c
- Olive Oil
- Butter and cream
- Berries like strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, e.t.c
- Unsweetened coffee and tea
Keto diet for beginners
Since the keto diet is simply a diet that contains small carbs, moderate protein, and a high amount of fats in it, the first point for a beginner is not to go about ditching all carbs at once. Research to be certain that the keto diet is right for you in the long run. So, what should a beginner do?
Take in more vegetables so as not to lack the necessary vitamins and minerals and then, bring down the carbs in your diet to its minimum. This is important if you must attain the state of ketosis.
Stress can interfere in the way your body achieves ketosis; in the sense that the stress hormones cortisol causes the blood sugar level of your body to increase. So, if you are always engaging in strenuous activities or perhaps the nature of your job demands it, then it will be wise to put away the keto diet for the main time. Also, with regular exercise, meditation, sleeping, and even engaging in yoga, your stress level can be managed. A good night’s sleep, say 7-9 hours, should do the trick in getting your body and mind in shape.
Increase water intake
Keto diet requires you to stay hydrated at all times, majorly because of its diuretic nature. So, consume a minimum of 6 to 8 glasses of water daily so as to avoid feeling dizzy and constipated during the induction stage. You are equally also expected to take the necessary electrolytes like adding broth to your meal that can help regulate the flow of water among your body.
Maintain Your intake of protein
The liver needs as much protein as it can get so as to produce amino acids needed to make new glucose for your cells and organs. These are cells and organs that cannot make use of ketones as fuel for energy, like the kidney and red blood cells. A moderate level of protein in your diet, in the range of 20-30%, is required as excess protein prevents ketosis, while a deficiency in it would lead to the loss of muscle mass.
Keto diet Meal plan
This is a Keto diet meal plan for 2 weeks. These are samples to help you start your keto diet journey, so feel free to make some adjustments either by making it dairy-free or vegetarian. Also, hundreds of keto recipes are at your disposal, so feel free to choose from them.
Source : https://www.dietdoctor.com/low-carb/keto/diet-plan
Week 1 of your Keto diet meal plan
Breakfast- No bread keto breakfast sandwich
Lunch- Keto tuna salad with boiled eggs
Dinner- Keto hamburger patties with creamy tomato sauce
Breakfast- Bulletproof coffee
Lunch- Keto roast beef and cheddar plate
Dinner- Keto fried salmon with broccoli and cheese
Breakfast- Keto coconut porridge
Lunch- Keto shrimp and artichoke plate
Dinner- Keto chicken casserole
Breakfast- Keto egg muffins
Lunch- Keto cauliflower soup with crumbled pancetta
Dinner- Keto cheeseburger
Breakfast- Boiled eggs with mayonnaise
Lunch- Keto Caesar salad
Dinner- Fathead pizza
Breakfast- Classic bacon and eggs
Lunch- Keto salmon-filled avocados
Dinner- Keto ribeye steak with oven-roasted vegetables
Breakfast- Western omelet
Lunch- Keto prosciutto-wrapped asparagus with goat cheese
Dinner- Creamy keto fish casserole
Week 2 of your Keto diet meal plan
Breakfast- Scrambled eggs
Lunch- Keto Asian beef salad
Dinner- Keto pesto chicken casserole
Breakfast-Keto cheese roll-ups
Lunch- Keto Caprese omelet
Dinner- Keto meat pie
Breakfast- Keto Frittata with fresh spinach
Lunch- Keto noodle chicken soup
Dinner- Keto Carbonara
Breakfast- Dairy-free Keto Latte
Lunch- Keto avocado, bacon, and goat cheese salad
Dinner- Keto pizza
Breakfast- Mushroom omelet
Lunch- keto smoked salmon plate.
Dinner- Keto tortilla with ground beef and salsa
Breakfast- Keto baked bacon omelet.
Lunch- Keto quesadillas
Dinner- Keto Asian cabbage stir-fry
Breakfast- Keto pancakes with berries and whipped cream
Lunch- Italian Keto plat
Dinner- Pork chops with green beans and garlic butter
Over the years, the keto diet has proven to be a very reliable way to stay healthy without losing out on the fun of a good meal. Staying healthy is important to living a longer and happier life, and with the aforementioned food plans, you are sure to achieve that.