The ketogenic or ‘keto’ diet is more than just a low-carb diet, it’s actually a high fat diet. The goal of the ketogenic diet is to flip your body’s metabolism from using carbohydrates as the primary energy source, to instead use fats for fuel. Once carbohydrate levels are lowered in our bodies, we enter a natural metabolic state known as ketosis, where we begin to produce ketones by breaking down fats in the liver.
In a typical ketogenic diet about 70-75% of all calories come from fat. It differs from low-carb Atkinson paleo diets because the protein levels are moderate, with only 20-25% of calories consumed attributed to protein. Carbohydrate intake is kept very low – typically less than 30-50g per day (or less than 10% of all calories).
YES! But, in order to lose fat we have to burn more calories than we consume daily, regardless of what kind of diet we follow. The keto diet is not magical or different in that respect.
A ketogenic diet can make caloric restriction easier because high fat keto-friendly foods tend to keep you fuller longer and less prone to cravings. Once in a nutritional state of ketosis your body does use fats preferentially for energy; this means that if you are eating less calories than you are burning, the additional required energy will come from burning stored fats.
One of the limitations of the ketogenic diet, is that is it avoids sugar and any carbohydrates that are not high in fiber. This typically means no breads, pasta, rice, potatoes or sweets. It also means steering clear of most fruit, other than a small portion of dark berries like raspberries, blackberries or blueberries.
To satisfy your sweet tooth, skip the sugar and instead try some low carb treats that may be sweetened with some low-glycemic sweeteners like stevia, erythritol, xylitol or sucralose.
The ketogenic diet allows you to eat a variety of savoury flavors and foods. Many staples in the keto diet include; eggs, bacon, full fat meats, fish, avocado, leafy greens, full fat cheeses, nuts and coconut oil to name a few.
One of the advantages of the keto-friendly foods is that they tend to taste rich and the higher fat content makes them more filling. This can be a benefit for those are looking to curb their appetite and lose weight.
The ketogenic diet has been studied for many decades for its benefits in disease treatment and control, in particular neurological conditions like epilepsy and metabolic issues like diabetes.
Keto-dieters commonly report improved mental clarity, increased energy levels, improved cholesterol levels, less cravings and even weight loss.
Some people experience keto flu while their body makes the switch from carbs to fats as the primary fuel. Most of the symptoms are related to dehydration and loss of electrolytes associated with lowering stored carbohydrate levels. Drinking lots of water with a pinch of sea salt can help to avoid this or a good quality bone broth can provide nutrients and sodium to replenish your system.
More advanced solutions include using a beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) supplement. BHBs are supplemental ketones, that can give your body an energy boost if you’re feeling weak or foggy. KetoVita by ANS Performance is a great option, because it includes not only BHBs but also essential vitamins to help with energy.
ANS Performance makes the KetoSys series of keto-diet lifestyle products, which can help you achieve nutritional ketosis and make staying in keto easy and delicious.
The KetoSys system consists of a keto-friendly meal replacement powder which comes in 4 delicious flavors: Chocolate, Vanilla Chai, Lemon Meringue Pie and Salted Caramel! KetoMate is a delicious flavoured coffee or tea creamer, that makes your ‘double-double’ coffee sugar-free and keto-friendly. Lastly, KetoVita as mentioned previously, is a vitamin and energy supplement that can be used alone or added to any keto-friendly supplement or shake to boost performance.