Written by: Roxana Oliver
You are what you eat: so don’t be fast, cheap, easy or fake!
If you’re trying to lose weight and get in shape, it’s not enough to just exercise – working out is important, but not as important as it is to adjust your diet to your goal.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that you should eat less but simply that you should watch what you eat. There are many different diets out there, but the one that worked for me best was keto.
So, if you’d like to learn more about how keto works and what it can do for you, here are some basics about this type of diet.
What Is It?
Keto is a type of low carb diet that makes your body produce ketones – small fuel molecules that your body uses when it runs out of sugar.
These fuel molecules are produced in your liver when you eat very few carbs and only a moderate amount of proteins.
The thing is, the glucose that you get from carbs is usually your body’s primary source of energy, which is why your fats are not needed and therefore stored.
So, by eating less carbs, your insulin levels will drop, and since you’re not supplying your body with enough glucose, it will start burning the stored fats and running entirely on ketones.
The state your body is in when it starts producing ketones is called ketosis. Now, it is true that the fastest way to get into that state is by not eating anything, but it’s not easy to starve yourself for that long, and it’s not exactly healthy either.
A much better way is to focus on what you eat instead of how much, and that’s where the ketogenic diet comes into play.
What Should You Eat?
First things first, you should plan your diet ahead. What you should eat depends on how fast you want to reach this metabolic state. In general, the less carbs you eat, the faster you’ll get into ketosis.
Most of your limited carbs should come from vegetables, nuts, and dairy products.
Refined carbohydrates and starchy food like pasta, cereals, potatoes, rice, and bread are out of the question.
You also shouldn’t eat fruit, as it’s high in sugar – the exceptions are avocado, and some berries. You should avoid carbs all together in order to reach the 20 gram mark of daily intake of carbs through the listed produce.
What you should eat is food that is high in fat. Meat will be one of your main sources of energy, so when choosing it, make sure it’s a fattier cut. Nowadays, you can order any kind of quality meat online, which also saves you the time you’d spend on searching for the right kind of meat.
You should also eat leafy greens like kale and spinach, high-fat dairy products like cheeses and butter, as well as nuts and seeds like walnuts and sunflower seeds. You can also add other fats, like coconut oil, saturated fats, stevia, etc. When it comes to veggies, everything that grows above ground is OK, in some quantity, with leafy greens being your best low carb friend.
While I was on this diet, my favorite recipe was scrambled eggs with bacon and cheese fried on butter. You can also try something like smoked salmon, cinnamon butter bombs, grilled chicken and spinach pizza, or you can even make your own keto bread with almond flour, butter, eggs, baking soda, and apple cider vinegar. I personally don’t do this, as it kind of complicates things. Keeping it simple is the key to success, but the choice is there.
What Are The Benefits?
First and foremost, it can help you lose weight.
As already mentioned, this diet makes your body use fat as its main energy source, which is bound to result in a weight loss.
Also, since your insulin (the hormone that makes you store fat) levels will drop, your body will start burning fat much faster than it would normally.
Next, it can help you control your levels of sugar. Some studies have shown that it can even prevent and manage diabetes more effectively than low-calorie diets. This also means that if you are a diabetic, you should definitely consider this diet.
Finally, fats are considered to be the most effective fuel molecules. So, by providing your body with a better energy source, you will feel more energized and focused during the day. Also, fat is much more “satisfying” than sugar, which means that you will feel less hungry for longer periods of time.
If you’re struggling with losing weight, the most important thing is not to give up until you try all the options. The keto diet has worked for me, and even though there are no guarantees in life, I do hope you will try it as well.
It might turn out to be just the thing you need to improve your lifestyle.