The Ketogenic Diet, Commonly Used For Weight Loss… Is It Safe? Effective? healthy? Know the answers
Table of Contents
- 1 What is the ketogenic diet?
- 2 Is the ketogenic diet safe?
- 3 Is the ketogenic diet effective?
- 4 Is the ketogenic diet healthy?
What is the ketogenic diet?
The ketogenic diet is one that, like its own indica name, makes us enter ketosis. And what is ketosis? Ketosis is a state of the body in which the body feeds and nourishes its cells with ketone bodies, which come from fat stores. As carbohydrates are not ingested with this diet, the body must “look for a substitute” to serve the cells with energy, and this substitute is ketone bodies (which appear when fats are burned). These compounds are used alternatively by the brain as a source of energy in the absence of glucose.
As I said, these diets restrict, even go as far as prohibiting carbohydrates. The proportion of carbohydrates in a ketogenic diet is usually well below the recommendation of 50 to 60% of total calories, and generally provides about 10% or less of the energy in the form of carbohydrates .
There are ketogenic diets in which the intake of fruits and / or vegetables is allowed, but in very controlled quantities, while others completely eliminate all sources of hydrate, prohibiting the intake of cereals, flours, bread and also fruits, vegetables and vegetables.
Is the ketogenic diet safe?
It is. Ketosis is a process in which our body obtains energy in conditions of low glucose and low insulin, that is, from diets very low in carbohydrates. The myth of its dangerousness probably stems from confusing it with diabetic ketoacidosis , which bears some resemblance in name and form. This other dangerous process can be suffered by people with type I diabetes and occurs in conditions of high glucose levels and absence of insulin, in which the levels of ketone bodies skyrocket and when they are not used for energy, they become toxic.
Also, few people follow her for a long period of time. Lack of adherence to this diet, either due to habits, social life or anxiety, does not last long as a food pattern. And therefore, if there were any danger, it could not occur.
However, it is true that it has some disadvantages or consequences:
- Constipation : Some people suffer when starting this type of diet.
- Dizziness, nausea, cramps : Occurs sometimes at the beginning and usually disappears shortly. It is easily counteracted by drinking plenty of water and drinking broth (salt) from time to time (nausea is due to a small sodium imbalance).
- Bad breath : It usually occurs in diets very low in carbohydrates, due to the elimination of ketone bodies by the breath. It is solved by increasing carbohydrates and is mitigated with more frequent oral hygiene.
Is the ketogenic diet effective?
If we talk about weight loss, yes, it is. But no more than other types of low-calorie and less restrictive diets . Different studies have proven the efficacy of the ketogenic diet together with non-ketogenic diets to lose weight, and it was found that both have a similar impact on the magnitude of weight lost if they have such a caloric intake.
In other matters, too. This diet has been used for decades to reduce epileptic seizures and in some studies it has been associated with the reduction of cardiovascular disease factors.
Is the ketogenic diet healthy?
From my point of view no . It cannot be when there are ketogenic diets that prohibit, as I explained at the beginning, cereal, flour, bread and also fruits, vegetables and legumes, which for me are the basis of a healthy diet. For me, a diet that prohibits food is not healthy.
In addition, they do not teach how to eat , but they also demonize carbohydrates and enhance the myth that circulates around that carbohydrates are not good, or they are fattening . Nor does it seem to me to be easy to carry , given the pace of life we lead and the society we live in or the culture we have (everything is celebrated at a table with a knife and fork). It is not necessary to go through that bad time, which can also lead to frustration due to non-compliance, with its consequent anxiety and even compulsive bingeing . And much less when, with a healthy hypocaloric diet and without restrictions, we can obtain the same result and achieve the goal equally.
However, I do not want to say that I do not see it as suitable according to who and when, but it should never be taken as the diet solution to weight problems and done without the supervision of a nutritionist dietitian who balances it , making sure that there are no nutritional deficiencies and go incorporating the hydrates.