KETOpedia - Keto

Ketogenic Diet: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide

A ketogenic diet is essentially a low-carb, high-fat diet. The percentage ratio of fats to protein to carbs is 75/20/5. When you’re in a state of ketosis, the body produces ketones in the liver to be used as energy. Ready to explore more?
 
 

WHAT IS EATING KETO?

Ketosis is a natural process the body initiates to help us survive when food intake is low. Ketosis is achieved when eating a low-carb diet of under 20-30 carbs a day over up to a 2-week period. When you’re in a state of ketosis, you’re in a metabolic state. During this state, we produce ketones, which are produced from the breakdown of fats in the liver. There are three main types of ketone bodies that form in your body when being in Ketosis:

Acetate
Acetoacetate

When there is no longer enough glucose for the body to use because you’re restricting your carb intake, it turns to an alternative source of energy: your fat stores. It takes the fat stores and the liver breaks them down to make glucose. And when this happens, elements known as ketones are formed as a byproduct of the process.

When you eat something high in carbs, your body will produce glucose and insulin. You don’t want high levels of these! Since the glucose is being used as a primary energy, your fats are not needed and are therefore stored.

It’s simple!
sugar/carbs + fat = stored fat


How do you get into a proper state of ketosis? Here’s the bottom line.

01

Restrict your carbohydrates.
20-30g per day.


02

Restrict your protein intake.
You can have bacon, but it doesn’t mean you can eat the whole pig. Too much protein can lead to lower levels of ketosis – the excess protein turns into sugar. Ideally for weight loss, you want to eat between 0.6g and 0.8g protein per pound lean body mass. For muscle building, stick with 1.0g – 1.2g per pound.


03

Stop worrying about fat.
Fat is your new soulmate. It’s your best friend that has always been there, but you never thought of it that way. Epiphany time! Enjoy its company.


04

Drink water.
Try to drink four liters of water a day. Make sure that you’re hydrating. It’ll help with hunger and that cotton mouth you constantly have.


05

Stop snacking.
Insulin spikes are bad, and that’s what snacking does. In general, you won’t be that hungry, but when you are, people better watch out because you’ll be like a rabid zombie needing food ASAP!


06

Start fasting.
Intermittent fasting can really help with weight loss. An easy way is to not eat anything after 7pm, and not have breakfast or food until late morning, or lunch. That way, you get a good 15+ hours without eating. Simply skip breakfast 2-3 times a week.


07

Exercise.
Do we really need an explanation for this? If you break a sweat, you’ve done good, grasshopper. Keep it up.


08

Start supplementing.
Magnesium, Calcium, and Vitamin C help. A Beta-Hydroxybutyrate drink also really helps to amplify the ketosis process, and with other beneficial effects.



 

BENEFITS OF EATING KETO

The benefits of being on a ketogenic diet, or eating keto are really nothing short of a miracle. If you’re one who has cruxes like caffeine or smoking or sugar to get you through your busy schedule and to keep up with the demands of the day-to-day, imagine if you could get the same, if not more, effects from eating keto? Imagine not needing caffeine for energy because you naturally are producing enough to keep up with the demands of the world! It’s possible. Don’t cry. We’ve got you.

Take a look at the benefits you get with eating keto:

  • Mental Focus, Clarity & improved Cognitive Function
    Lose that brain fog! Many people use the ketogenic diet specifically for the increased mental performance. Ketones are a great source of fuel for the brain. When you lower carb intake, you avoid big spikes in blood sugar. Together, this can result in improved focus and concentration. Studies show that fatty acids improve brain function as well.
  • Increased Energy & Normalized Hunger
    By giving your body a better and more reliable energy source, you will feel more energized during the day. Fats are shown to be the most effective molecule to burn as fuel.On top of that, fat is naturally more satisfying and ends up leaving us in a full state for longer. You’ll eat less and have many less hunger pangs throughout the day. BUT, when you are hungry, make sure everyone gets out of your way because you’ll bulldoze them when you see some food in the distance! Best to plan your meals, or have keto snacks on hand.
  • Weight Loss
    The ketogenic diet essentially uses your body fat as an energy source – so there are obvious weight loss benefits. On keto, your insulin (the fat storing hormone) levels drop greatly which turns your body into a fat burning machine.Scientifically, the ketogenic diet has shown better results compared to low-fat and high-carb diets, even in the long term.
  • Cholesterol & Blood Pressure
    A keto diet has shown to improve triglyceride levels and cholesterol levels most associated with arterial buildup. More specifically low-carb, high-fat diets show a dramatic increase in HDL and decrease in LDL particle concentration compared to low-fat diets.Many studies on low-carb diets also show better improvement in blood pressure over other diets. Some blood pressure issues are associated with excess weight, which is a bonus since keto tends to lead to weight loss.
  • Controlled Blood Sugar
    Keto naturally lowers blood sugar levels due to the type of foods you eat. Studies even show that the ketogenic diet is a more effective way to manage and prevent diabetes compared to low-calorie diets. If you’re pre-diabetic or have type II diabetes, you should seriously consider a ketogenic diet.
  • Epilepsy
    The ketogenic diet has been used since the early 1900’s to treat epilepsy successfully. It is still one of the most widely used therapies for children who have uncontrolled epilepsy today.
  • Insulin Resistance
    Insulin resistance can lead to type II diabetes if left unmanaged. An abundant amount of research shows that a low carb, ketogenic diet can help people lower their insulin levels to healthy ranges.

HOW TO EAT KETO?

You want to keep your carbohydrates limited, coming mostly from vegetables, nuts, and dairy (but not too much dairy because it’s higher in protein). Some even avoid dairy because of intolerances, or when wanting to drop weight faster. As well, the more restrictive you are on your carbohydrates (less than 15g per day), the faster you will enter ketosis.
 

DO NOT EAT

Grains: wheat, corn, rice, cereal, etc.
Sugar: honey, agave, maple syrup, etc.
Fruit: apples, bananas, oranges, etc.
Tubers: potato, yams, etc.

 

DO EAT

Meats: fish, beef, lamb, poultry, eggs, etc.
Leafy Greens: spinach, kale, etc.
Above-Ground Vegetables: broccoli, cauliflower, etc.
High-Fat Dairy: hard cheeses, high fat cream, butter, etc.
Nuts & Seeds: macadamias, walnuts, sunflower seeds, etc.
Avocado & Berries: raspberries, blackberries, and other low glycemic impact berries
Sweeteners: stevia, erythritol, monk fruit, and other low-carb sweeteners
Other Fats: coconut oil, high-fat salad dressing, saturated fats, etc.

If you’re hungry and need a quick fix, grabs some jerky, nuts, seeds, cheeses, or peanut/almond butter to curb your appetite. Make sure you’re not snacking too much though, as sometimes we can confuse the want to snack with the need of a meal. Grab a small meal over a snack if you have the option.

Many people incorporate MCT oil into their diet (it increases ketone production and fat loss) by drinking bulletproof coffee/tea in the morning, or taking a straight shot of MCT oil. It also makes you feel full longer. When it comes to MCT oil, you have some choice. If you can afford it, choose an C8 MCT oil because it’s the highest quality and increases ketone levels the most.

So now that you’re an expert in keto, or we’ve convinced you to join the revolution, we have to balance the good news out with some bad news – the first two weeks are tough on your body as you transition from using carbs as an energy source to fats. Getting into a state of ketosis comes with something called the “Keto Flu.” But we’ve got you covered!
 

Comments 3

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Jessica H.

Thank you very much for sharing this. It gives me a quite good understanding how to start a keto lifestyle. I am wondering though what the ketoflu is about. You might want to add it to this article. Keep it up guys!

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Dana

This is super helpful!