Is the Ketogenic Diet Right for You?

If you’ve tried to lose weight in the past few years, the chances are good that you’ve read something about the ketogenic diet. It’s all the rage and there’s a good reason that people have been talking about it. Provided that you follow the right protocols and consult your doctor, it can help you lose weight quickly and safely.

What is the ketogenic diet? Does it work – and is it safe? Here’s what you need to know.

ketogenic diet

What is the Ketogenic Diet?

The ketogenic diet was originally created to help people with seizure disorders manage their conditions. A side effect was that they lost weight. The basics of the ketogenic diet are that it is a diet that is high in fat and low in protein and carbohydrates.

Following a ketogenic diet puts your body into a state called ketosis. That’s when your body is able to stay in fat-burning mode, using the fat you have stored as fuel. Under normal circumstances, your body will burn carbohydrates first even though it prefers to burn fat.


What Can I Eat on the Ketogenic Diet?

The basic nutritional breakdown of the ketogenic diet is as follows:

  • 80% of calories from fat
  • 10-15% of calories from protein
  • 5-10% of calories from carbohydrates

The biggest challenge, as you might imagine, is getting your fat calories from healthy sources. Eating too much saturated fat, like the fat found in meat and dairy products, can increase your cholesterol and negatively impact your cardiovascular health.


What Are the Benefits and Risks of the Ketogenic Diet?

There are some significant benefits to the ketogenic diet:

  • Once your body is in fat-burning mode, you can lose weight continuously without feeling hungry
  • The keto diet can help you lower your blood sugar and sometimes helps people reduce their dependence on insulin
  • Following a keto diet can reduce your cravings for sugar and other unhealthy foods.

There are a few potential risks to be aware of, too:

  • In the first few weeks, you may experience the “keto flu,” which can cause headaches, fatigue, and irritability. You can counteract it somewhat by staying hydrated with water and electrolytes.
  • Some people who follow a keto diet get kidney stones or may experience vitamin deficiencies.
  • Eating too much saturated fat can have serious implications for your heart.

The key to staying healthy on the ketogenic diet is to get your doctor’s advice and make sure to get the nutrients you need.


Conclusion

The ketogenic diet might seem extreme, but there’s plenty of scientific evidence to support its effectiveness as a way to lose weight.