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All About the Keto Diet

All About the Keto Diet

  • Admin
  • Mar 03, 2020

Of all the "buzzword" diets tossed around these days, there's one specific diet that's garnered more talk than most of the others. That is, of course, the "keto diet."

You've probably heard talk about this diet on news reports, the internet, or through social media posts from friends and family. But what exactly is the keto diet - and what are its positives and negatives? What kind of foods can - and can't - you eat on the diet? How can you get started on it?

Let's take a deep dive into the keto diet here. Here is our guide to the keto diet!

What is the Keto Diet?

Put simply, the keto diet is a system of eating high in fats and proteins and low in carbohydrates. The main goal of the diet is to force the body to burn its own fats, rather than relying on carbohydrates for energy. That state - with the body relying on its own fats for energy - is "ketosis," where the diet gets its name.

Initially, the ketogenic diet came about as a treatment for epilepsy. It received a renewed boost in public as a way for controlling weight in the 1990s and through into the new millennium.

What are the benefits of the keto diet?

Putting aside the potential therapeutic benefits for epilepsy (we'll focus on the adult version here), the ketogenic diet can serve as a useful weight-loss tool. People that stick to the ketogenic diet can lose a significant amount of weight over a relatively short period. Additionally, there may be benefits to overall health - like lowered blood pressure and reduced blood sugar and insulin levels, for example.

What are the downsides to a keto diet?

There are several potential downsides to a ketosis diet. First, there is the real danger of the "keto flu." The massive "detoxification" that comes when changing the body's eating habits - from one with plenty of processed sugar and caffeine to zero - can have a real effect on someone's day-to-day life, resulting in the sickness with that name. To avoid that sickness, a gradual change in diet may be better.

Another big problem with the keto diet? Simply eating the wrong things. People may load up on too much red meat, cheese, dairy, and other foods high in saturated fat. These foods are allowed on the keto diet; however, eating too much of them can have a seriously detrimental effect on heart health. The keto diet needs to be extremely balanced to work well.

Finally, the keto diet - like many fad diets - is hard to stick to. Once the diet is over, people on it may quickly "yo-yo" back to their original eating habits. Any weight gain may disappear quickly. In fact, the combination of introducing poor eating habits back into your diet with the excess saturated fats from keto may leave a person even worse off than they were before the diet.

What can I eat - and not eat - on the keto diet?

Meat and poultry are fine on the keto diet, as are cheese, eggs, and low-carb vegetables. Seafood is an excellent option for the keto diet. Nuts, seeds, berries, and unsweetened coffee and tea are excellent options for breakfasts and snacks.

As for what you can't eat on keto? First - nothing with added sugar and sweeteners. That means no sodas, juices, or sweetened ice teas. Avoid grains, like pasta and rice. You can't eat beans, peanuts, peas, and lentils. There are no potato chips, pretzels, crackers - pretty much the entire snack food aisle. Finally, avoid alcohol (especially beer) at all costs.

Is the keto diet right for me?

Take a look over the pros and cons of the keto diet and decide if it's something you're interested in doing - and be sure to contact your doctor for advice before starting any diet regimen.

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