Friday, July 8, 2016

Keeping Fit with a #Ketogenic Diet

Guest Post: Keeping Fit with a Ketogenic Diet

Please check out today's guest post! Aron and Joel are still in South Dakota at high adventure Medicine Mountain Boy Scout camp, and I am busy around here keeping up with playdates and swimming pool dates, working on the house, walking every morning while listening to Dave Ramsey, proofreading and doing some fall homeschool planning. Hope you're enjoying your summer!

Millions of people the world over spend most of their time trying to keep fit. Fitness experts have come up with various ways to do so including exercising, maintaining a balanced diet and of course gaining the willpower and motivation to keep fit. When it comes to diet, you are told to get rid of junk food which is food that is high in sugar, fat, and cholesterol. Instead, you should be generous with fresh fruits and vegetables, foods high in protein and fiber as well as eat organic meats and grains. Drinking lots of water and knowing when to eat is also a factor to consider in your diet plan. So, what is it about carbohydrates and a ketogenic diet?

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A ketogenic diet is a diet that is high in protein, fats and low carbohydrates. What does it do? It simply changes the way energy is being used in the body which aid in weight loss and keeping fit. 

Understanding ketosis

Normally, when you eat foods rich in carbohydrates, they will be broken down into glucose which is the easiest molecule that the body uses to produce energy. Insulin is produced in response to high levels of blood glucose which in turn pumps it into the cells and converts it into fat. This means that with a constant supply of carbohydrates other energy sources like fat will not be used hence stored. Hence the weight gaining features of carbohydrates.
In a ketogenic diet, the intake of carbs is kept as low as 15g per day. This leads to depletion of glucose and glycogen leads to mobilization of free fatty acids from stored fat as a result of increased beta-oxidation. It is during this process that ketone bodies are released from the liver to be used as fuel in place of glucose, a state known as ketosis.

 Why being in ketosis is good

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Being in ketosis means that your body can utilize fats for fuel in place of carbohydrates. This ensures that there is no more stored fat in cells hence a lean body which is fit. Another benefit of ketosis is the increased rates of lipolysis and release of beneficial hormones that are usually blocked by insulin. When combined with a high protein diet, ketosis suppresses appetite unlike when you are on a high-carbohydrate diet. This helps in reducing food volumes that you eat. Ketosis also spares proteins because if favors ketones over glucose hence no gluconeogenesis. 

Reasons against ketosis

One of the main problems of ketosis is experienced during its early stages as the body shifts metabolically from burning glucose and glycogen to ketones for fuel. During this process, the body experiences high water loss, fatigue, brain fog, headaches, and aggravation. Another problem is the increase in fat-lipid profile which might increase cholesterol levels. Complex carbohydrates usually contain fiber, vitamins and minerals hence ketosis might lead to micronutrient deficiencies as a result of a low carbohydrate diet. Otherwise, you will need to take fiber and multivitamin supplements. Ketosis leads to ketoacidosis which is high levels of ketones in the blood and a high health risk for diabetics plus it can lead to loss of muscle because any low-calorie diet is catabolic in nature. 

So, is a ketogenic diet good for you?

The answer comes about after understanding it and carefully weighing the benefits against the odds. Keeping fit is vital, and if ketogenic diet cannot work for you, you can try other methods like laser liposuction to get rid of that excess fat to keep fit.

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