Today is day five of my 108 days of content creation challenge.
The topic today is Ketogenic Diet.
I will be finding answers for the questions
- What is Ketogenic Diet?
- What is ketosis?
- How to achieve ketosis?
- How do you know if you are in ketosis?
- What are ketones/ketone bodies?
- What is diabetic ketoacidosis?
- What are the negatives of a ketogenic diet?
First, let me post an update on my progress.
Day 5 OMAD challenge
Starting with the summary of day four.
I broke my fast early. I did only 11:00 hours of fasting.
I was not hungry and I was not bored.
I was fully aware that I am breaking the fast, that I had decided to do.
I think this is where grit and consistency of action come into play.
I think I was quite happy with the relatively effortless 18:00 hour fast I did.
So maybe I thought it was all right if I break my fast early today.
Any way this cannot happen again.
I have to hold myself accountable and complete my fast no matter what.
Also, I binged on food yesterday.
My goal is to reach a stage when I eat only when I am hungry.
Long way to go. But I am sure I can.
The ketogenic diet or keto diet is one of the most searched topics on google.
And I am sure the majority of the people searching for this topic are looking for it as a way to lose some weight.
And they are not wrong, there are many studies that show that a ketogenic diet leads to weight loss.
Again as with everything else, this does not happen in isolation, there are positive and negative aspects to a Ketogenic Diet which I will discuss below.
Click here to read “6 reasons to be addicted to healthy weight“.
What is Ketogenic Diet or Keto Diet?
The ketogenic diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet.
This diet puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis.
During ketosis, your body becomes very efficient in breaking down fat for energy.
Fat is broken down into ketones in the liver.
Ketones are a more efficient fuel for the brain.
As a result of this diet, you may lose a lot of weight.
It may also lower your blood sugar and insulin levels.
What is ketosis?
Our body brakes down carbohydrates in our food into glucose to fuel our body and brain.
When we are on a low carb diet, our body starts breaking down stored fat into ketones to fuel our body.
This process of breaking down fat is called ketosis.
In ketosis, ketones become our main source of energy.
How to achieve ketosis?
- Ketosis can be triggered by a low carb high-fat diet. Carbohydrates in food are restricted to around 20 grams to 50 grams per day. Also, increase healthy fats in your diet. That includes healthy high-fat foods like avocados, coconut oil, olive oil, butter, lard, cheese, dark chocolate, whole eggs, fatty fish, nuts, full-fat yogurt, etc.
- You should also consume enough proteins for maintaining muscle mass during weight loss. Proteins are also used in the liver for the essential function of gluconeogenesis.
- Increase your physical activity to achieve ketosis faster. Exercise helps your body to deplete stored glycogen. And this will trigger your liver to increase the production of ketones faster.
- Fasting also triggers ketosis. In longer fast, once the body is depleted of stored glycogen, the body naturally starts breaking down stored fat. You can also try modified intermittent fasting, in which you eat 85% to 90% of your calories from fat during your feeding window. This will help in your trigger ketosis quickly and also maintain the ketosis for a longer time.
How do you know if you are in ketosis?
- Elevated ketone levels have a side effect of causing bad breath. Which can be a good indicator of you being in ketosis.
- If you are experiencing weight loss during a low carb and high-fat diet, you may be in ketosis.
- A high level of ketones in your blood can be measured using ketone test kits. This is the most accurate way to determine if you are in ketosis or not. It involves a tiny pinprick to draw blood from your finger for the testing on ketone test kits. The testing kits measure the amount of beta-hydroxybutyrate, one of our primary ketones in our bloodstream.
- A decreased appetite is also an indicator of you being on ketosis.
- When you first start a low carb diet, you may experience brain fog and tiredness. As you progress with your diet you will experience increased focus and energy. This can again indicate your body switching from a glucose-based fuel to a ketone-based fuel.
- Digestive issues like constipation and diarrhea are also common side effects when you start this diet. This normally subsides as you progress along with your diet. You should include plenty of healthy low-carb vegetables for its fiber content to counter these digestive issues.
- Insomnia is also reported during the initial phases of your diet. Again this also improves as your progress with your diet.
What are ketones/ketone bodies?
When your body runs out of glucose, the liver will start producing ketones by breaking down fat.
Ketones or ketone bodies are water-soluble fatty acids, which are released into the bloodstream when your body is not producing enough glucose.
These ketones are used as an alternative fuel for your body and brain.
What is diabetic ketoacidosis?
The process of ketosis is not the same as diabetic ketoacidosis.
Ketosis is part of the normal metabolic process of breaking down stored fat to fuel our body’s energy requirements.
Ketoacidosis is a dangerous metabolic condition that can lead to coma or death if left untreated.
In ketoacidosis, the level of blood sugar and ketones shoots up drastically in our bloodstream.
This leads the blood to become very acidic, which is really harmful.
Ketoacidosis is most often seen in insulin-dependent type 1 diabetics and also rarely in type 2 diabetics.
Diabetics should consult their doctor before doing any ketogenic diets or fasts.
What are the negatives of a ketogenic diet?
There are few potential negative side effects of a ketogenic diet.
These include headache, constipation, tiredness, high cholesterol levels, and bad breath.
Most of these symptoms are temporary and will go away within a few days.
People taking medication for high blood sugar should consult their doctor before trying a ketogenic diet.
I should be more serious about my OMAD diet.
And stick to completing the decided fasting period.
It will help me be more mentally strong.
Intermittent fasting with a ketogenic diet will help in staying in ketosis for a longer period.
And this can accelerate weight loss.