What are the Pros and Cons of the Keto Diet?

What are the Pros and Cons of the Keto Diet?

What are the Pros and Cons of the Keto Diet?

Few dietary trends have caught the public’s attention as much as the ketogenic diet has in recent years. We’ve already spoken about how the diet started as a therapy for epilepsy and what it takes to follow it effectively.
Is the ketogenic diet, however, worthwhile? Before starting any stringent diet plan, scrutinize the benefits and drawbacks. By the conclusion of this post, you’ll have a better idea of whether or not going keto is good for you.

What are the Pros and Cons of the Keto Diet?

Quick Keto Diet Overview

The ketogenic diet is a way of eating that relies on fat rather than carbs to fuel your body. A typical ketogenic diet consists of 75 percent fat, 20 percent protein, and 5% carbs; however, this may be adjusted to match your specific needs. If you consume 2,000 calories a day, you will consume approximately 167 grams of fat, 100 grams of protein, and 25 grams or less of carbohydrates.

The keto diet differs significantly from the conventional American diet, and it has around 35 percent fat, 15 percent protein, and 50 percent carbs. After vast volumes of data linked the Western eating pattern to various chronic illnesses, interest in alternative eating patterns has grown.

The keto diet advocates say that altering the way your body fuels itself by supplying the majority of calories in fat rather than carbs is the solution to many of the health concerns that come from bad dietary habits.

The ketogenic diet induces ketosis in your body by restricting carbohydrate consumption and replacing it with healthy fats. This is a metabolic condition in which the liver breaks down lipids into acids known as ketone bodies, which it uses as fuel. To switch up your energy source, this technique replicates fasting circumstances. Naturally, this procedure has some substantial side effects, some of which are beneficial and others not.

Pros and Cons of Keto Diet

What will happen to your body if you follow a ketogenic diet? The following are some of the diet’s most widely claimed advantages and disadvantages.

Pros

There’s a reason why the ketogenic diet is so popular today: it’s been demonstrated to boost your health and body composition in various ways. Here are a handful of the most well-studied advantages.

Can Help You Lose Weight

Compared to low-fat diets, one of the most popular reasons individuals follows the keto diet is that it helps them lose weight and keep it off in the long run.

According to research, your diet significantly influences how much body fat you burn for energy, and eating a high-fat diet increases satiety (making you feel fuller for longer). It makes you want to snack less during the day. This helps you keep track of your calorie intake, leading to weight reduction and a change in your body composition.

May Improve Cognitive Functioning

The ketogenic diet has long been thought to impact brain function. The diet’s high-fat composition helps decrease inflammation in the brain, which causes nerve pain, and studies suggest that overweight individuals who follow the diet have fewer migraines than before.

In addition, preliminary research suggests that the keto diet may help manage ADHD symptoms by reducing symptoms or delaying the onset of neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

Further evidence suggests that fueling the brain with ketones can improve young people who have had traumatic brain injuries, albeit much of the current research has only used animal models.

May Slow Various Cancers

Following a ketogenic diet has been shown to limit the spread of tumor cells and even stop them from growing.
What is the explanation behind this? Researchers discovered that it may have something to do with cancer cells’ glucose-dependent metabolism and that starving cancer cells of glucose causes oxidative stress in cancer cells but not in healthy cells. The keto diet’s metabolic changes may potentially make cancer cells more receptive to radiation and chemotherapy.

What are the Pros and Cons of the Keto Diet?

May Reduce Inflammation Caused by High Blood Sugar

The ketogenic diet aids in the reduction of insulin levels. High insulin levels, whether irregular or chronic, cause various health concerns, including diabetes and cancer.

The ketogenic diet has also been shown to improve general insulin sensitivity, making it more straightforward for your body to handle carbs properly.

Helps You to Kick the Sugar Habit

The average American consumes around 152 pounds of added sugar in a year. In one week, you’ve finished three pounds of sugar, and this is approximately seven to 10 times the acceptable limit.

However, because each meal leaves you content, adopting the ketogenic diet may simplify overcoming sugar cravings. Because the diet limits your carbohydrate consumption to 25 grams per day, you’ll consume practically no sugar, making it simpler to kick the habit altogether.

May Increase Female Fertility

Over 10% of American women under 44 have difficulty conceiving or carrying a pregnancy to term.

Because the ketogenic diet modifies a person’s metabolism, many people find that following it helps with some underlying reproductive concerns. The dietary plan helps control the hormonal consequences of the polycystic ovarian syndrome and improves weight and insulin levels (PCOS).

Cons

There is no such thing as a perfect diet, and the ketogenic diet has its own set of drawbacks.

Most Initial Weight Loss Is Water

It’s pretty unusual to lose a lot of weight when you first start keto, but the weight reduction is just temporary.

The water weight loss resulting from depleting your glycogen stores is the primary cause of these first reductions. Some of those pounds will return if you reintroduce carbohydrates to your diet.

Long-term Research Is Limited

Despite its current popularity, little is known about the long-term implications of the ketogenic diet on your health.

After years or decades of dedication, researchers are left with more questions than answers concerning its usefulness. There isn’t enough research to say if ketogenic dieters will gain weight or experience other adverse health effects, so adopting the eating plan now might put you in danger in the future.

What are the Pros and Cons of the Keto Diet?

The Diet May Trigger Brain Fog

Your brain is wired to run on glucose, and cutting off that supply might harm your mental health. This is because your body struggles to convert from using a readily available energy source to produce its own, which can cause memory loss, headaches, decreased cognition, and overall “brain fog.”

These side effects are generally transient, and they go away after the brain learns to use ketone bodies instead of glucose. Those who are susceptible to mental health difficulties such as anxiety and depression, on the other hand, may experience these consequences more acutely, making the ketogenic diet a poor choice for them.

At-Risk of Intake of Some Nutrients

Carbohydrate consumption is limited to roughly 5% of total calorie intake on the keto diet.

While we commonly associate carbohydrates with bread, rice, and pasta, many fruits and vegetables contain carbohydrates. On the other hand, fruits and vegetables are nutrient-dense and significant providers of vitamins, minerals, and other phytochemicals.

Vitamin A, C, K, folate, and fiber intakes are often low in persons who follow the keto diet.

Following the keto diet without paying close attention to your micronutrient consumption may result in long-term health issues.

Easy to Overconsume Saturated and Trans Fats

Although the ketogenic diet promotes fats over all other macronutrients, it might be difficult for newcomers to understand that not all fats are digested in the same manner in the body. Consuming saturated fat-rich diets (particularly animal-based saturated fats) may raise the risk of heart disease and cancer.

Many people who attempt the keto diet may prefer conventional animal fats and processed fats over high-quality fats and oils derived from plants and organic or grass-fed animal products.

Potentially Dangerous for Those at Risk of Eating Disorders

Like several other diets, the ketogenic diet necessitates meticulous attention to each meal consumed, which can be difficult for people who have a history of disordered eating.

This diet regimen may cause compulsive and obsessive behavior in certain people. Categorizing so many foods as “off-limits” might lead to harmful physical and emotional connections with eating. Similarly, failure to adhere to the diet to the letter may result in feelings of shame and inadequacy, all of which should be carefully considered before commencing.

Might Trigger Kidney Stones

Because of the ketogenic diet’s lack of fiber, between 3% and 10% of those who follow it for months at a time develop kidney stones. You may lower your risk by staying hydrated and eating keto-approved foods with more fiber content or taking a fiber supplement.

Might Cause Digestive Distress

The high-fat, low-carb diet can cause digestive issues such as diarrhea or constipation when you start eating keto.

The signs and symptoms usually go away within a few weeks, although they might be frightening at first.

When you’re on the keto diet, it’s critical to keep hydrated and take fiber and electrolytes.

What are the Pros and Cons of the Keto Diet?

Bad Breath Is Common

One transitory, albeit annoying, adverse effect of entering ketosis is foul breath. According to many people, this occurs as your body breaks down acetoacetic acid, which has a metallic odor and can taste similar to nail paint.

When you’re in ketosis, your urine generally smells the same.

You Might Get the “Keto Flu”

You may experience a time of transition while your body adjusts to the ketogenic diet, leaving you feeling weak and weary. The keto flu is a term used by followers of the eating regimen, and it can leave you feeling sick.

Weakness, lightheadedness, irritability, mental sluggishness, constipation, and lethargy Within a few days to a few weeks, the symptoms usually disappear.

Dos and Don’ts of the Keto Diet

After reading this introduction, if you’re ready to attempt the ketogenic diet, it’s critical to start on the right foot. Following are some dos and don’ts to keep in mind as you begin your keto journey.

Dos:

  • Eggs, avocado, and extra virgin olive oil are all excellent sources of healthful fats.
  • To get the most nutrients, eat as many low-carb vegetables as possible.
  • Berries are one of the few keto-approved fruits abundant in nutrients, so eat them regularly.
  • Consume natural food prepared from complete foods (nothing processed).
  • As much as possible, buy organic, grass-fed animal products.
  • Drink plenty of water to compensate for the fiber deficiency in your diet.
  • Keep a food diary to track how you’re feeling over time.
  • If the limits are too demanding, consider a modified keto diet.
  • If you have any underlying medical issues, talk to your doctor before starting.
  • Before you eat something, make sure you read the nutritional information.
  • Consider getting nutritional or health counseling to help you stick to your diet.
  • Drink bone broth and consume nuts, seeds, and cacao powder to replenish your electrolytes.

Don’ts:

  • If you have a history of pancreatic illness, liver disease, thyroid difficulties, eating disorders, or gallbladder disease, you should avoid the keto diet.
  • As much as possible, avoid fast food.
  • Trans fats should be avoided.
  • Low-fat processed foods should be avoided.
  • Don’t overeat. Because keto-friendly foods are high in satiety, your dining room may appear to be more empty than usual at mealtimes.
  • Don’t be concerned about the number of calories you consume. If your macronutrient ratios are where they should be, there’s no need to keep track of your intake.

Don’t go on the keto diet if your doctor has warned you against it.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *