What is a Healthy Ketogenic Diet?
The Ketogenic Diet occupies a unique place in nutrition science across the world in the sense that it has the largest number of devotees and the largest number of critics at the same time.
The unfortunate truth is that both camps – pro and against – are RIGHT! The school of thought that vehemently advocates the Ketogenic Lifestyle has undoubtedly experienced the sheer transformational power of this diet – both physical and mental health parameters.
It’s become widespread and the market is filled with brands that claim to be the best. Well, if you are planning to get fit, you may well be interested in a Healthy Ketogenic diet.
The camp that thinks that Ketogenic Diet is an unhealthy fad is also right (in a sense) – The Ketogenic Diet can indeed have harmful effects BUT only when it is improperly and carelessly executed. This improper execution is something that takes away the essence of the Keto Diet and leads to various misconceptions regarding the same.
The opposition of a Ketogenic Diet is actually an opposition to an improperly executed Ketogenic Diet. The problem, therefore, lies with the improper, unguided and haphazard Ketogenic Diet Plan.
It’s been observed that the ILL EFFECTS of a Ketogenic Diet that some people experience are actually the ILL EFFECTS OF A BADLY EXECUTED KETOGENIC DIET.
As an example, consider any tool of common use – like a kitchen knife. A knife makes life easier in the kitchen. It is a great tool when used properly. It helps you take the good and cut the bad. In several cases, the improper and careless use of the knife might end up cutting and bruising you – Do you then blame the knife for improper usage?
It is the same for the Ketogenic Diet or for any other diet for that matter. The results of a healthy Ketogenic diet can be measured by the extent of its good execution. Though a tough one to follow among other diets, the results are rapid and impressive.
Diets such as Paleo, Atkins, Ketogenic, Mediterranean, Vedic are designed for a specific purpose and for a specific time. These diets take into consideration the health conditions, goals, and other parameters of an individual.
People following any diet improperly usually end up hating the diet and propagating misinformation, hopelessness, trust issues and fear. And this issue magnifies in the case of the Ketogenic diet. The soul of the Ketogenic diet lies and its execution. People not executing the diet properly claim that the Ketogenic diet had no benefits or they couldn’t see the expected results.
The specialty of a Ketogenic Diet is that its not another diet for weight management or weight loss. It’s a powerful transformational paradigm that helps in chronic condition management and reversal. Doctors generally prescribe Ketogenic Diet to Type-I Diabetics. Many kinds of research have proved it’s benefits for people with chronic health conditions.
A HEALTHY KETOGENIC DIET helps in reversal and management of chronic conditions like Thyroid, PCOD, and Type-II Diabetes.
Epilepsy, Metabolic Syndrome, Glycogen Storage Disease, Autism, Parkinson’s Disease, GLUT1 Deficiency Syndrome are some other examples of chronic conditions that can be managed very well through a balanced Ketogenic Diet.
People who oppose the Keto Diet, think that a Ketogenic Diet is about mindless consumption of fats – bacon, ghee, oil, meats, etc. However, this could not be farther from the truth. In fact, one should try to stick to a vegetarian Keto as long as possible and consume healthy fats (polyunsaturated) – not any fats. Remember, you are on a Keto diet and not on a Fat-diet.
A Ketogenic diet is all about balance and proportion. You not only need to eat the healthy fats and cut down your carb intake to an ultra low level, but it means taking the right amount of proteins, fats, carbs, and dietary fiber within the prescribed limits of a healthy ketogenic diet.
Normally our body consumes carbohydrates for energy. We, as Indians eat a lot of carbs and that leaves no room for fats to get digested. This extra fat gets deposited and leads to weight gain and related chronic conditions like diabetes, PCOD, Thyroid, etc. A Ketogenic diet helps you lose weight by getting your body into ketosis, a state wherein your body actively consumes fats rather than carbs. This is done by lowering your carb intake to less than 5%, but at the same time consuming more healthy fats and proteins.
A Ketogenic diet helps you lose weight by getting your body into ketosis, a state wherein your body actively consumes fats rather than carbs. Once you are successful at obtaining ketosis, miracles are bound to happen. The rapid weight loss, the reversal of chronic conditions, mental health benefits, better skin, and hair will blow your mind.
In fact, most people who reap benefits from a Ketogenic Diet in weight loss do not even hit Ketosis at all – they just lose weight because they quit sugar, maida, colas, and other junk in their effort to hit Ketosis. And that’s great. Isn’t it?
A Balanced Ketogenic Diet
The basic tenets of a balanced Ketogenic Diet are as follows:
- Restrict Carb Intake (Refine Sugar, Maida, Junk Food, Colas, Juices all have high Carb content)
- Increase Healthy Fat Intake (Nuts, Seeds, etc. )
- Moderation in Protein Intake
- Electrolyte Intake (Minerals replenishment)
- Calorie Deficit
If you analyze the 5 points above, you see that they are pretty intuitive pointers for a healthy diet. You can reap the benefits of the Ketogenic Diet without even hitting Ketosis. People with an extreme case of a chronic condition only require Ketosis.