The ketogenic diet, usually shortened to the keto diet or just keto, is a low-carbohydrate diet. It has recently gained popularity across the Western world thanks to its proposed benefits. Many people follow the ketogenic diet for its fat-burning, brain-boosting, and cardioprotective effects. A weekly keto meal plan will include a range of foods that contain very few carbohydrates and a higher amount of protein and fat. The diet requires you to consume fewer than 50 grams of carbohydrates to keep your body in a ketogenic state.
Below, we’re going to discuss some of the key benefits of the ketogenic diet. Before we get into the benefits, we want to reiterate that you should always consult a medical professional before making any drastic changes to your diet, especially if you are managing a chronic medical health condition.
Increased Fat Burning
In a ketogenic state, your body switches to using fatty acids and ketones for energy as opposed to glucose and glycogen. In other words, your body will start to break down fats for energy because it’s getting very few carbohydrates from the foods in your diet.
After just a few days of following the ketogenic diet, your body will enter a ketogenic state and you will begin to burn through fat more quickly than you would on a carb-heavy diet. Your liver will start to activate enzymes that break down the fats that are stored around your body to produce ATP that your muscles and tissues can use for energy.
Easier Weight Loss
When you’re burning more fat, you’ll find it easier to lose weight if this is your goal. The ketogenic diet enables you to reach your goal weight without following an extremely low-calorie diet.
Because you need to consume fewer than 50 grams of carbohydrates a day on the keto diet, you’ll be less able to consume high-sugar snacks, like pastries, cookies, and candies. These snacks tend to be high in calories so you’ll naturally eat fewer calories when on the ketogenic diet and weight loss will be much easier.
Improved Cognitive Function
Many studies show that the keto diet can improve cognitive function. The ketones that are produced through the breakdown of fat in the body can be converted to ATP and used by your brain.
By switching to a ketogenic diet, you can experience the cognitive-boosting effects of a low-carb diet. You’ll notice that you have better focus and concentration in the mornings, and you’ll feel mentally sharper.
Reduced Severity of Disease
There are a number of neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease, whose symptoms appear to improve when the individual is switched onto a ketogenic diet.
Although further research is required to confirm the true benefits of low-carb diets for neurodegenerative conditions, the current results are promising.
Other studies have shown the benefits of the ketogenic diet for those with epilepsy. When an individual with epilepsy was switched onto a low-carbohydrate diet, the frequency and severity of their seizures appeared to decrease.
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