Is Keto Diet Good for Weight Loss?
In this article, we will answer the query “Is Keto Diet Good for Weight Loss?”. You will also find information regarding what a keto diet is and why it promotes weight loss; the foods included and excluded in this type of diet; health benefits and risks associated with a keto plan; and finally, a brief comparison with the other common diets.
Is Keto Diet Good for Weight Loss?
Yes, Keto Diet is good for weight loss according to different scientific information (1,2,3); however, it is not a conventional diet. It is used as a treatment, mainly for obesity and Diabetes. It should be done under professional indication and supervision, and it is not recommended to follow in the long term (4).
Is keto diet more efficient than other types of diet for weight loss?
Comparing Keto Diet with Mediterranean Diet (another popular diet with multiple benefits), a recent study (12) demonstrated that both diets are equally effective in terms of weight loss, but Keto Diet could help to reduce weight faster.
In some specific cases, such as diabetes, a Keto Diet seems to be more efficient for glucose and insulin regulation (13). Finally, the Mediterranean Diet is more effective if you are looking to improve your hepatic health (14).
Another popular diet is the low fat diet, which helps to reduce your total fat daily intake. If you compare this diet with Keto diet, the outcome is kind of controversial, but it happens to be more effective a Keto Diet than a low fat diet, especially in men (15).
Whatever your purpose for considering a keto diet, you should always consult with a specialist.
What is a Keto Diet?
Keto Diet is a popular nutritional approach that dramatically reduces your carbohydrate intake. This diet allows less than 50 g of carbohydrates a day (5); this is the equivalent of approximately 3 slices of bread! (6).
On the other side, fats are the protagonists of this diet, followed by the proteins. According to different studies, it is popular as a treatment for obesity and diabetes. In the first case because it forces your metabolism to use fats as an energy source. In the second one, because it could help to regulate your glucose in blood (1-4).
What foods are included and excluded in a Keto Diet?
The foods allowed (included) in a Keto Diet are those rich in fats and proteins, with a minimum contribution of carbohydrates (7). For instance:
- Matured cheeses
- Nuts and seeds
- Coconut oil
- Low glycemic index fruits like strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries
On the opposite way, all foods with a high content of carbohydrates are not allowed in a Keto Diet (7), for instance:
- Cereals (breakfast cereal, oats, among others)
- High glycemic index fruits like banana, mango, grapes, pineapple, cherry, kiwi, papaya, among others (8)
How Does the Keto Diet Work for Weight Loss?
The Keto Diet helps reduce weight loss through a depletion of your energy storage; normally, your body stores energy in the form of glycogen (a large molecule composed of glucose) synthesized with the carbohydrates you eat in foods (5).
When you stop eating carbohydrates, your body, eventually, runs out of glycogen and starts to use fats for giving energy to every cell in your organism. This is called ketosis, because when your body uses fats as energy, it produces molecules called ketonic bodies (acetone, acetoacetate, and β-hydroxybutyrate) (5).
What are the potential health benefits of doing a Keto Diet?
Some potential health benefits of doing a Keto Diet includes the following (3):
- Weight loss and weight management
- Reduce your levels of insulin and glucose in blood, so it could help you to regulate your health if you have diabetes
- It helps to regulate your lipids in blood, such as cholesterol, lipoproteins, and triacylglycerides; this could help to prevent cardiovascular diseases.
What are the potential health risks of doing a Keto Diet?
The most concerning health risks of doing a Keto Diet is a nutritional deficiency, because it is a very restrictive diet, you could be depriving your body of essential micronutrients like vitamin D and A, selenium, magnesium, or zinc (9).
Remember that those micronutrients are very important for growth and also for strengthening your immune system (10).
In addition, there is not too much evidence on its safety in the long term; almost all studies are in the range of 6 to 24 months. If you are considering doing a Keto Diet, it is mandatory to look for a professional opinion, especially if you are a child or adolescent (11).
In this article, we answered the query “Is Keto Diet Good for Weight Loss?”. You also found information regarding what a keto diet is and why it promotes weight loss; the foods included and excluded in this type of diet; health benefits and risks associated with a keto plan; and finally, a brief comparison with other common diets.
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