You might have heard about “keto”, “ketogenic diet” or “ketosis” in various magazines, internet, etc. In the recent years, keto diet’s popularity has grown significantly.
If you don’t know about these terms, or still confused about what is a ketogenic diet and ketosis is, then let me explain you in brief:
“A ketogenic diet a low carb and high fat along with moderate protein diet. Its main goal is to get your body in a metabolic state known as ketosis.”
“Ketosis is a state where your body is deprived of glycogen (sugar) stores; hence it tries to find another fuel source. When it occurs the fat stored starts converting into ketones by the liver which becomes the main source of fuel for the body”.
You would be thinking why should I do this? What are the benefits of a ketogenic diet?
Most of the diets have only one single benefit, which makes it easier to fall off the wagon. On the other side, a ketogenic diet has numerous benefits which are capable of changing your entire body’s chemistry altogether.
Here are the 10 benefits of a ketogenic diet:
- Weight Loss
- Brain Function
- Endurance Performance
- Appetite Control
- Mood Stabilisation (Bipolar, Autism, etc)
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
- Treatment of a Migraine
- Parkinson’s Disease & Epilepsy
1. Weight Loss
This is the most important benefit of a ketogenic diet. While you are in ketosis, your body starts burning the fat stored in the body instead of glucose for the required energy.
But you need to know how the actual process works.
Once your body enters ketosis, both the blood sugar and the insulin level drops. This gives your fat cells an opportunity to expel the water it was retaining. Due to this reason, people start seeing a big drop in the weight.
After the removal of water from the fat cells becomes very small and enters the bloodstream where they are converted into ketones in the liver.
This process continues as long as you are on a ketogenic diet. If you want to fast-track your way to ketosis, then you should add more low caloric fuel in the form of ketone supplements to your diet.
2. Brain Function
Other than weight loss, a big reason why more people suggests a ketogenic diet is improved brain function, memory recall, clarity of thought, etc.
In a recent study on rats, it was found out that a keto diet leads to cognitive performance in the aged rats.
It was also shown that the ATP concentrations and the number of hippocampal mitochondria also increased up to 50% in the mice’s brain.
In another study on humans, it was found that even a short-term ketogenic diet can improve memory function in old-age adults.
Dr. Mhyill states that the brain and the heart function more efficiently by 25% on ketones than sugar.
Many people who have been in ketosis have said that their cognitive function has improved significantly after ketosis.
3. Endurance Performance
If you are an athlete, then you might be missing out a major edge over your competitors if you don’t know the benefits of ketogenic diet and endurance performance.
In a study done on endurance sports and ketosis which was named “FASTER STUDY ”, found out that the group who was on ketogenic diet had more mitochondria lower lactate load, lower oxidative stress, than the other group.
There are also various studies which show that the ketones in the blood lead to significant performance improvements.
In a 2016 study , it was found that supplemental ketone ester supplements “demonstrate that acute nutritional ketosis alters substrate utilization patterns during exercise, reduces lactate production, and improves time-trial performance in elite cyclists.”
4. Appetite Control
When you are on a diet, then hunger is your worst enemy. It is the single most reason why many people eventually give up on their weight loss or any other diet plan.
One of the amazing things a ketogenic diet does that it lowers your appetite. When you cut down the carbs and eat more protein and fat, then you end up of consuming fewer calories.
Many people who start a keto diet are unable to do intermittent fasting when they have to eat only at certain timings in a day.
It is only possible when you have a don’t feel hungry and a ketogenic diet helps you in this.
5.Mood Stabilisation (Bipolar, Autism, etc)
When you search autism or bipolar with ketosis on search engines, then you would find thousands of articles on improving autism and bipolar disorder with a ketogenic diet.
In the research paper Potential Therapeutic Use of the Ketogenic Diet in Autism Spectrum Disorders it was stated that a ketogenic diet is very effective in dealing with bipolar disorder and autism.
In a study done on 30 autistic children who were on the keto diet was monitored for six months.
The children who had mild autism showed most improvement while the rest showed mild to moderate improvements.
There are also many reports which suggested that ketosis helps in mood stabilization in individuals who are suffering from bipolar disorder.
6. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
There are many people who suffer from IBS or Irritable bowel syndrome (chronic diarrhea, bloating, stomach discomfort, etc).
Most of them would not like the idea of having a low carb and high-fat diet.
Consuming more fat intake can lead to increased diarrhea, but in long-term, a ketogenic diet can be very helpful.
Numerous research and study show that low sugar consumption can be very helpful with IBS symptoms.
A ketogenic diet also provides adequate relief and improves abdominal pain, stool habits, and quality of life for those suffering from IBS.
7. Treatment of Migraine
Many people who suffer from a migraine have shown great results when they switched from a conventional high carb diet to the low carb ketogenic diet.
A study Journal of Headache Pain published on the relation between a migraine and a ketogenic diet states:
“Ketogenic diets (KD) ameliorates headache and reduces drug consumption in migraineurs, while the Standard diet is fully ineffective on migraine in a short term observation. Our findings support the role of KDs in migraine treatment.”
Another study which was conducted on twin sisters who suffered from frequent migraines, when switched to a keto diet had their migraines decreased to a great extent.
There is a lot of evidence which shows that a keto diet can help in clearing acne.
Various studies show that high glycemic foods are the main cause of acne and as the ketogenic diet is deprived of any such foods, it may help in removing the acne.
The are some other studies which show a positive connection between ketosis and lower level of acne.
Paoli et states in his paper Beyond Weight Loss: a review of the therapeutic uses of very-low-carbohydrate (ketogenic) diets.
“there is persuasive, although not yet conclusive, clinical and physiological evidence that the ketogenic diet could be effective in reducing the severity and progression of acne and randomized clinical trials will be required to resolve the issue.”
9. Parkinson’s Disease & Epilepsy
Ketosis can be very helpful for peoples who are suffering from Parkinson’s Disease.
When 5 individuals were given a ketogenic diet for 28 days who suffered from Parkinson’s disease. All of them showed great results and their ratings were improved in the unified Parkinson’s disease rating scale.
The ketogenic diet is being used for the treatment of epilepsy for past many decades. In fact, the keto diet was first used for the treatment of epilepsy in the year 1921.
Since then, various research and study have shown that it is very helpful in the treatment of epilepsy.
Many of the scientists suggested that Alzheimer’s should be considered as ‘type 3’ diabetes.
In this state, the brain becomes unable to utilize glucose which leads to high level of inflammation.
If the brain is unable to utilize glucose, then in the right situations, the brain can operate off ketones .
Then, it is believed that a ketogenic diet helps in Alzheimer. There are various studies which support this link.
One report also concluded that “a significant clinical improvement was observed in Alzheimer's patients fed a ketogenic diet”.
As you can see there is a ton of evidence to prove that a ketogenic diet has a drastic effect on one’s health.
One of the great things is that there are a variety of delicious recipes available which you can choose from.
The ketogenic diet is much more than a diet. It becomes a lifestyle which you can adapt for your well being.
There are many people who claim that keto has changed their lives for better.
If you also want to reap the benefits then it is suggested to start your keto journey as soon as possible.
Within few weeks of following the keto diet, you would notice a significant amount of transformation within yourself.
If you are a vegetarian then also you don’t need to worry. We at ketolabs have specially designed a 7-day vegetarian keto diet meal plan which you can use.
So what are you waiting for? Start Now.
What benefits did you get after following a ketogenic diet? Let us know in the comments section below.