Recently, many of my patients have been asking about a ketogenic diet. Is a ketogenic diet safe? Would you recommend it? Despite the recent hype, a ketogenic diet is not something new. In medicine, we have been using it for almost years to treat drug-resistant epilepsy, especially in children. In the s, Dr. Atkins popularized his very-low-carbohydrate diet for weight loss that began with a very strict two-week ketogenic phase. Over the years, other fad diets incorporated a similar approach for weight loss. In essence, it is a diet that causes the body to release ketones into the bloodstream. In the absence of circulating blood sugar from food, we start breaking down stored fat into molecules called ketone bodies the process is called ketosis. Once you reach ketosis, most cells will use ketone bodies to generate energy until we start eating carbohydrates again.
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Snack Full-fat cottage cheese topped with pine nuts. Ketones provide energy for the heart, kidneys and other muscles. A study in 11 adults with type 1 diabetes who followed a ketogenic diet for over 2 years found that the median number of low blood sugar events was close to 1 per day Carb intake on the keto diet is typically limited to fewer than 50 grams per day, which can come as a shock to your body 2. Adult GI with Dr. You say a key I diet is very restrictive and hard to follow. To be on the safe side, be sure to discuss with your doctor whether the keto diet is right for you before you drastically change your eating habits.
Having this knowledge will also help you be more successful if you do decide to give the keto diet a try. Think of ketones as an alternate macronutrient in addition to carbs, protein and fat. Since ketones are such an effective source of energy for our brains and muscles, when we enter a state of nutritional ketosis, we no longer physiologically need or psychologically crave the abundant amounts of fat-storing carbs that make up a typical diet. The fastest way to induce ketosis is to severely limit dietary carbohydrate intake to less than 50 grams daily and in some cases you may need to go as low as 30 grams or less especially if you are mostly sedentary, while also restraining protein intake and then liberalizing healthy fat intake, which can make up percent of your diet. Advantages include rapid fat burning, enhanced cognitive function and the potential to reverse chronic conditions like Type 2 diabetes, to name a few. Certain nutrients are lost when you are in ketosis and others are missed because when your body has the ability to go long periods without food, you can become deprived of essential nutrients. Some examples include.