Are you part of the over 60 percent of Canadians who are overweight or obese? Have you found yourself wondering if going keto is right for you?
If you answered “yes,” then you’ve come to the right place!
Keep reading to learn more about the pros and cons of a keto meal plan.
What Is Keto?
In very simple terms, a keto meal plan is high in healthy fats and low in carbohydrates.
The goal of this kind of diet is to put your body into a metabolic state called “ketosis” - hence the name.
Ketosis happens because your body does not have the carbs it typically would to make energy from, so it will then resort to using fat and turning them into chemicals called “ketones.” Your body will then use the ketones to give you energy.
Because of this process of your body burning through fat for energy, people often see quick (but unsustainable) weight loss while on a keto diet.
The Pros and Cons of Keto
So now you know the basics of keto, but what is it that draws people to the diet? And what are some of the risks associated too?
Find the answers to those questions below:
We'll start with the positives of following a keto meal plan.
As mentioned above, one benefit of the keto diet is weight loss. This happens due to ketosis but also because many people report feeling less hungry while following a keto meal plan which ultimately leads them to consume fewer calories.
Less “Restrictive” than Other Diets
A cornerstone of most diets is restricting foods that are high in fat, but not for keto! In fact, a keto meal plan encourages people to eat things like butter, cheese, nuts, and red meat.
Keto Could Improve Your Health
Some research indicates that following a keto diet may potentially help you lower your blood pressure, triglycerides, and cholesterol. However, these claims have not been verified, and this may not be the case for everyone who tries a keto meal plan.
Now that we've discussed some of the pros, let's cover some of the less desirable things about going keto.
Adhering To a Keto Diet Can Be Difficult
For several reasons, keto can be hard to maintain.
For one, though the diet isn’t restrictive about high-fat foods, it does severely limit the types of food you can eat. Most keto meal plans will advise you to avoid foods such as fruits, beans, starchy vegetables, grains, sugars, and alcohol.
Another reason people find it difficult to maintain is the higher costs associated with many of the foods you’ll find on a keto meal plan.
Less Carbs = Less Energy
Though your body will burn fat for energy when you’re not eating carbs, this is not always enough.
If you’re an athlete who is following a keto meal plan, you may find yourself feeling tired and performing at a lower level than you otherwise would be. To combat this, try eating your daily carbs half an hour before your workout, or find a pre-workout shake that has some carbohydrates that will help with your energy.
The “Keto Flu”
The side effects of your body entering ketosis are sometimes referred to as the “keto flu.”
Though the reason for this side effect isn’t fully known, it can cause you to feel symptoms like headache, irritability, fatigue, brain fog, difficulty sleeping, dizziness, nausea, and constipation.
Is a Keto Meal Plan Right For You?
Each person’s body is different, and it’s important to keep in mind that a keto meal plan may not be for everyone.
Even with the knowledge you’ve learned here, choosing the right diet can be complicated. Luckily for you, we’re here to help!
Take the next step toward your health and fitness goals and contact us to schedule an appointment with a dietitian.