The Ketogenic Diet, or Keto Diet for short, is a research-backed diet that helps you speed up fat loss, improve blood glucose and insulin resistance, and even improve brain function in people with certain conditions. For these and many other reasons, hundreds of thousands of people are turning to the keto diet as a way of life.
One of the most popular reasons for following the keto diet, however, is because of its power you help you lose fat without shedding muscle, helping you achieve a leaner appearance.
How Does the Keto Diet Work?
On the keto diet, most of your calories come from fat (about 70%), and carbohydrate intake is very limited (only about 5% of total calories). The other 20% of your energy comes from proteins which are body uses to build and maintain muscle and form other important bodily components.
Glucose is the result of the breakdown of carbohydrates in the body, and it is the form of energy most easily used by our cells. Ketones, on the other hand, are the result of the breakdown of fat stored in our bodies and in the food we eat. When we have a very limited carbohydrate intake, our body switches from using carbohydrates for energy to using fat for energy – achieving a state of ketosis. It will use fat from our diet and the fat we have stored in our bodies to keep cells working optimally. If you have a balanced diet, you will lose weight in a healthy way
How to Start the Keto Diet
If you are considering starting the keto diet, there are some key steps you can follow to ensure you are doing it in a healthy way.
Step 1: Modify Macronutrient Intake
The calories you consume on the keto diet should be distributed in the following way:
- 70% healthy fats
- 20% protein
- 5% carbohydrates (or 20g total carbs)
The most difficult change for most people who are starting on the keto diet is reducing their carb intake. A typical western diet is composed of 50-65% carbohydrates, so reducing this to 5% can mean making a big change.
Some tips to make the switch healthily are:
- Making the switch gradually. Take 2 weeks to slowly reduce your carbohydrate intake and increase your fat intake, making sure that you are eating the right number of calories for your bodyweight.
- Add more healthy oils, dairy, and saturated fat to your diet.
- Eat high-quality, fresh sources of protein like fish, pork, chicken, beef, and game.
- Your carbs should come from keto-approved fruit like blueberries and strawberries
- Make sure you are consuming enough calories. Talk to a registered dietician if you don’t know how many calories you should be consuming for weight loss.
Step 2: Take Supplements that will Boost Ketosis and Balance Nutrition
After you have established a healthy diet, taking supplements can help your body adapt to the change, boost ketosis, and maintain a balanced nutrition. Here are some supplements that can help you achieve your goals on the keto diet:
- Keto BHB: Exogenous ketones that boost ketosis and fat loss. This is optimal if you lead an active lifestyle.
- Magnesium glycinate: Help your nervous system adapt to dietary changes while boosting your energy.
- Omega-3: Contributes to a healthy intake of fat that is essential for brain and heart health. Even with a high-fat keto diet, getting enough Omega-3 is difficult for most.
- K2 D3: Promotes bone and joint health and can help boost your immune system to adapt to dietary changes more effectively. It is also a boost for insulin sensitivity, one of the benefits of the keto diet.
- Apple Cider Vinegar: Can boost weight loss – a good pairing for those who are on the keto diet to achieve a healthy weight.
- Chlorella: Supports your antioxidant profile and boosts immunity. These are important benefits when your body is transitioning from one dietary pattern to another.
- Spirulina: Boosts brain function and can help to promote longevity and antiaging, thanks to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory
The keto diet can be a way to quickly and successfully lose weight in a healthy way. The key, however, is to follow a balanced diet and support your nutrition and adaptation to a very-low-carbohydrate diet through supplementation. The supplements mentioned above may help you to achieve and maintain ketosis, support overall health, and boost your brain health as you start to adopt the keto diet not only as a diet, but as an outlook on life.