The Keto Diet Explained

The Keto Diet Explained

The Keto Diet Explained

What is Ketosis?

The ketogenic diet, or keto for short, is becoming one of the most popular forms of weight-loss around the world, but many people don’t realise that there is a whole load of science behind keto.
In this introductory guide, we’re going to explain what causes ketosis, how ketosis can aid weight management, and look at some of the other health benefits.

Ketosis is a metabolic state that the body enters when there are increased levels of ketones in the blood and/or urine. This is a completely normal response when the body experiences withdrawals of glucose as a result of low-carbohydrate diets or periods of fasting.

Ketones are produced by the liver when the body starts to burn fat for energy instead of carbohydrates and sugars. This process can be caused either by choice, called Nutritional Ketosis, or due to some other reason such as diabetes, which is called Ketoacidosis.

In the case of Nutritional Ketosis, followers of the keto diet consciously move to a low-carb, moderate protein diet. Intake of carbohydrates is limited to between 20-50 grams per day to kick-start ketosis.

Ketosis and weight-loss  

The ketogenic – keto – diet is designed to induce ketosis in the body to burn more fat and aid in weight-loss or weight management. However, results can only be seen and maintained by following a “well formulated” diet, as noted in this 2018 study[1].

The study describes a “well formulated” keto diet as consisting of less than 50 grams of carbohydrates per day, and around 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. By following this approach ketosis usually kicks in after three or four days of following the diet. 

The results of another study[2] suggested that a follower of a ketogenic diet may lose more weight in the short-term than someone on a low-fat diet. Keto is believed to be a highly effective, short-term solution to weight loss, especially during the first 3-6 months of the diet but does not take into consideration long-term health benefits.
That being said, it is important to note that a low-carb diet may not be suitable for everyone, so it is important to consult with a health professional before embarking on a ketogenic diet.
The same goes for any taking any over-the-counter supplements and drinks which claim to kick-start ketosis. These tend to be available in a variety of formats such as pills, powders, and liquids, but there hasn’t been much research into whether they are actually safe or not.

Other health benefits of Ketosis

Alongside weight management, inducing ketosis in the body can also be incredibly beneficial for people who may be diagnosed with or suffering from one of the following ailments:
Diabetes
Heart disease
Cancer
Dementia and Alzheimer’s
Epilepsy
Parkinson’s
Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome
Brain injuries
    Most notably effective for diabetes and epilepsy, ketosis is often recommended by doctors to relieve sufferers of some of the key symptoms of these conditions.

    “The ketogenic diet can boost insulin sensitivity and cause fat loss, leading to significant health benefits for people with type 2 diabetes or prediabetes.” [1]

    There have been several studies conducted into how a ketogenic diet can impact said conditions, but as previously stated, a diet that induces ketosis should only be recommended by a health professional.

    Summary 

    In this introductory article, we’ve provided an overview of the science behind the ketogenic diet and looked at how ketosis can aid weight loss when induced in a “well formulated manner”.
    We’ve heard about some studies which have been carried out from both a weight management perspective, as well as how a keto diet can help relieve the symptoms of conditions like epilepsy and diabetes.

    There is a whole load more to tap into when it comes to keto, which is why Eva Bold is on a mission to provide you with the information you need to safely and effectively incorporate this diet into your lifestyle. Keep your eyes peeled for more articles coming your way soon, and sign-up to our newsletter to be the first in the know.