How Does Keto Impact Weight Loss?
Keto has some traits that are reminiscent of the Atkins diet and other low-carb plans. The keto diet involves dramatically reducing your carbohydrate consumption and substituting fat instead. This dietary alteration will put your body into a metabolic state known as ketosis.
Ketosis is a completely normal metabolic function. Essentially, when your body doesn’t have enough glucose for energy, it will burn stored fat instead. Glucose is created when carbohydrates are broken down inside your body. Cutting carbs from your diet means less glucose for your body to burn up.
Replacing carbs with fats will cause acids called ketones to build up in your body. The goal is to force the body to derive its fuel from fat, rather than carbs.
While your body is in ketosis, it becomes extremely efficient at burning fat. Ketogenic diets can trigger major reductions in your blood sugar and insulin levels, which has additional health benefits.
Keto for Weight Loss
Ketogenic diets are effective for losing weight and lowering risk factors for certain diseases. While low-fat diets are traditionally recommended for those looking to shed pounds, research shows that keto is, in fact, a superior approach to weight loss.
Unlike many diets, keto will not leave you feeling hungry after eating a pre-set number of calories for the day. Keto is a satisfying and filling method of dieting. In fact, you can lose weight without tracking calories—something that deters many people from adhering to other diets.
There are several reasons why keto is more efficient than a low-fat diet, including increased protein intake. Higher protein intake is advantageous for weight reduction and metabolic health.
Quick Keto Facts
- Ketosis occurs when the body is denied access to glucose, its main fuel source.
- In ketosis, stored fat is broken down for energy, producing ketones.
- Some people use a ketogenic diet to lose weight by forcing their body to burn surplus fat stores.
- The ketogenic diet was originally developed in the 1920’s to treat epilepsy but was inadvertently discovered to offer many other health benefits.
- There are multiple variations of the ketogenic diet.
Types of Ketogenic Diets
- Classic Keto: The strictest form of keto, classic keto requires a 4:1 ratio of fats to carbs or protein. This is a structured, individualized plan in which your diet will consist of 90% fat. Foods are usually weighed when following this regimen.
- Modified Keto: The modified version of the diet is intended to be less restrictive. It might be a good place to start if you’re new to keto, or if you’ve done classic keto for a long time and you’re trying to taper down to a more sustainable, long-term eating regimen.
- MCT: This version allows for a higher protein and carb intake than classic keto. MCT is short for Medium Chain Triglycerides, or highly ketogenic man-made fats.
- Modified Atkins: Carbs are limited in modified Atkins, while fat is encouraged. Protein is not limited at all. When you do consume carbs on this diet, fats should accompany them.
- Intermittent Fasting: This dietary intervention launches the body into ketosis by shortening the window of time that you eat during the day. For instance, you may only eat during an 8-hour window of the day, and fast for the other 16 hours. This forces the body to burn energy from fat.
Only the classic and high-protein ketogenic diets have been researched and studied extensively by professionals. Other, more advanced, versions of keto are primarily used by bodybuilders and elite athletes. Since the classic method is the most researched, it is often the most recommended.