The body’s primary source of energy comes from the breakdown of carbohydrates, resulting in glucose, a type of sugar, being produced that supplies energy to all cells in the body. The keto diet entails limiting carbohydrate intake and increasing fat intake, creating a metabolic state called ketosis. During ketosis, the liver starts utilizing the excess fat by turning it into ketones, which in turn can be used as an alternative fuel source for the body cells and the brain. The telltale signs of entering ketosis may include the ‘keto flu’, bad breath, constipation, brain fog, increased thirst, nausea, and many more. Such side effects may be unfavorable for many people and may negatively affect their daily lives.
There are many variations of the keto diet, including the standard ketogenic diet (SKD), high protein ketogenic diet, cyclical ketogenic diet (CKD), and a targeted ketogenic diet (TKD). However, the most researched and tested keto diet is the standard one, usually consisting of 70% fat, 20% protein, and 10% carbs. Ketogenic diets support weight reduction and mainly consist of a higher quantity of fats and proteins as these micronutrients are much more filling, aid in reducing appetite, and can increase the likelihood of a faster metabolism. Additionally, keto diets help those aiming to minimize triglyceride, insulin, blood pressure, and blood sugar levels, replicating the ideal beneficial conditions for people with diabetes and heart diseases. Despite that, pregnant women, people with diabetes dependent on insulin, and people with kidney stones or pancreatitis are strongly recommended against partaking in the keto diet.
Other benefits of the ketogenic diet involve protection against developing Alzheimer’s and reduction of risks of certain types of cancer linked to higher blood sugar and insulin levels. The ketogenic diet is recommended for a maximum duration of six months before it becomes integral for carbohydrates to be introduced back in small quantities to the diet.