To keto or not to keto? I get this question every day. Sometimes twice a day. What exactly is the keto diet plan? As described by the Harvard School of Public Health, the ketogenic diet is a low-carbohydrate and fat-rich eating pattern originally developed for the treatment of some disease states including diabetes, epilepsy, cancer, polycystic ovarian syndrome and Alzheimer’s disease. Today, the ketogenic diet has become a popular weight-loss tool following in the footsteps of other low-carb diets such as the Paleo Diet and the Atkins Diet. Uniquely, however, as opposed to the high-protein theme associated with these common diets, the ketogenic diet includes up to 70 to 80% of calories from fat.
So how does the keto diet work? Research on public health trends supports the theory that when carbohydrate intake is low and fat intake is high, the body will learn to use fat as an energy source more effectively and efficiently. The conversion of fat and protein to glucose requires energy, which burns more calories. In addition, a reduction in appetite-stimulating hormones and a high-fat content in foods may help to control hunger, thus leading to a reduced risk for periods of overeating. When used as a jumpstart to weight loss with a gradual transition to traditional macronutrient intake, the keto diet can be an effective dietary tool with minimal associated risks. In cases of obesity, when weight loss takes place, individuals may also experience a variety of additional health benefits including reduced insulin resistance, reduced blood pressure, improved cardiac profiles and reduced symptoms associated with Type 2 Diabetes.
How long can you be on a keto diet? It is important to incorporate a combination of keto and non-keto meals when following the keto diet. Following the keto diet exclusively for long periods of time can lead to physical symptoms such as hunger, fatigue, and nutritional deficiencies. However, your keto diet plan can be strategically designed to reduce or avoid these side effects. What can you eat on a keto diet? There are a variety of ways that people envision and follow the keto diet plan. For the most part, carbohydrate intake is restricted to very low levels. This includes foods such as pasta, rice, cereal, bread, potatoes, beans and fruits. Generally, fat intake is very high, including meat, butter, high-fat milk and cheese, nuts, seeds, avocado, plant oils and fish.
Let’s take a look at the some keto-friendly meals below! You can design your own meal plan with these keto meals and more at Keto Diet Meal Plan Delivery | Keto Meal Delivery | Clean Eatz (cleaneatzkitchen.com).
To support lean muscle retention during your weight loss journey, it is important to incorporate adequate protein. This is what makes a high-protein diet great for weight loss, especially for individuals to gradually transition back to general eating patterns! These meals will boost protein intake to enhance lean muscle and promote reduced body fat with calorie-controlled portions. Check out some of my favorite high-protein meals below, which can be found on our website at High Protein Meal Plan Delivery | High Protein Diet Plan | Clean Eatz Kitchen
NOTE: Though generally considered safe when followed in moderate durations with gradual transitions to traditional macronutrient intake patterns, it is important to note that long-term use of the keto diet could contribute to health risks. Please consult your health care provider to learn more about whether or not this diet strategy makes sense for you.