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What is Keto Diet?
In recent times, we have seen a positive change in people regarding attaining a healthy lifestyle. In order to attain it, people have altered their lifestyles in various ways like going for regular workouts, following various diets etc. One such diet that we know very less about is a KETO DIET. The word Keto comes from the word Ketosis. It is a normal process that involves the breakdown of fats from our bodies to produce ketones that are used by your bodies energy in the absence of carbohydrates .
So, Keto or a ketogenic diet is a low carbohydrate, high fat and a moderate protein diet, which basically involves drastic removal of carbohydrates from daily diet and replacing it with fats. In this diet the person is usually given less than 50 gms of carbohydrate per day, making the body to eventually run out of fuel (blood sugar) and forcing the body to break down the fats and the proteins .
Keto diet usually takes about a couple of days to over a week to set in. In the initial phase, the weight loss seen is tremendous however over a period of time the weight loss gradually fades away. In most of the cases it has also been seen that people tend to gain back the lost weight if the diet is discontinued.
Keto diets, if used for a short period of time is usually seen to be helpful and safe. However long term effects can lead to complications like mineral and vitamin deficiency, dehydration leading to severe constipation, regaining the lost weight, changing the chemical composition of the body and various cardio vascular diseases etc.
Different Types of Keto Diet
There are usually 4 types of keto diets :
1. Standard Keto Diet
This kind of keto diet usually consists of 75% fat , 15-20% protein and 5-10% carbohydrate.
2. Targeted Keto Diet
This diet is usually followed by athletes who need to maintain high intensity performances. It involves eating carbohydrates ( 70-80 gms) around workout times .
3. Cyclical Keto Diet
This diet is usually followed by athletes who follow advanced levels of high intensity exercises . it involves eating carbohydrates once or twice in a week to replenish their lost glycogen stores to maintain adequate amount of sugar levels needed for their training.
Keto days – FAT 75 % , PROTEIN- 15 – 20 %, CARBOHYDRATE – 5 -10 %
Off days – FAT 25%, PROTEIN 25%, CARBOHYDRATE – 50%
4. High Protein Diet
This diet plan is comparatively easy to follow since it increases the intake of protein to 120 gms and reduces the fat to 130 gms. However, this type of diet may not bring ketosis to the body (protein also gets converted to glucose for fuel) but it does involve weight loss.
Benefits of Keto Diet
Keto diet has shown immense health benefits in the fields of Diabetes (Type 1 and Type 2 ), Epilepsy and Obesity. It has shown controlled blood sugar levels, immense weight loss, and reduced number of seizures for people following it over a short period of time. However, studies are still going on for their long term benefits.
What to Eat in a Keto Diet?
- Nuts & Seeds
- Butter & Cream
- Olive Oil
What Not to Eat in a Keto Diet
- Legumes & Pulses
- Milk & Low Fat Diary
- Starchy Vegetables
An Indian vegetarian version of a keto diet?
Food items that can be included in an Indian vegetarian kept diet are – paneer, yoghurt, ghee, almonds, cashews, walnuts, oil seeds, palak ,sarson,bhindi, cauliflower etc. An example for a day’s diet chart is as follows –
Breakfast– 10 pcs almond
Vanilla milkshake (sugar free) with chia seeds
Mid Morning – Dry fruit and seed mixture (no raisins )
Lunch – 2 pcs almond flour roti
Cauliflower veg /bhindi veg
Snacks– Buttermilk/ chena
Dinner– Bottle gourd soup / palak soup / broccoli soup.
Cauliflower rice with cashew nuts
Stir fried veg (capsicum, mushrooms, onions, brocolli ,beans)
How to Get Started on a Keto Diet?
Focus on fats
Drink plenty of water
Regularly check ketone levels
Supplement with vitamins & minerals
Regularly check on electrolytes
According to Dt. Isha Kedia, for maintaining a healthy lifestyle, diet is not enough. One should religiously follow a workout routine along with any diet like Keto Diet to see visible changes. But it is always important to consult a dietitian or a doctor before doing any changes to your diet. Since right eating habits should start early to keep the body and mind well working and growing at the correct pace. This will ensure a comfortable life free of diseases, a productive mind and energetic body.