Keto diet health benefits and why to try it

Unlike other fad diets, the keto diet health benefits and the effect on weight loss are real and proven. And on top of that. It is very easy to follow, way easier than the breadcrumb trail left by two small children.

So without further ado, let’s take a look at some of the keto diet health benefits and why it might be a smart choice for you to try it.

KETO DIET IMPROVES GENERAL HEALTH

  • Improves cholesterol levels
  • Decreases triglyceride levels
  • Decreases weight and fat mass
  • Lowers blood sugar
  • Reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes

The present study shows the beneficial effects of a long-term ketogenic diet. It significantly reduced the body weight and body mass index of the patients. Furthermore, it decreased the level of triglycerides, LDL cholesterol and blood glucose, and increased the level of HDL cholesterol. Administering a ketogenic diet for a relatively longer period of time did not produce any significant side effects in the patients (Dashti et al., 2004).

Keto diet health benefits
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IMPROVES ENERGY LEVELS

Anyone who has recently switched from a standard western diet to a ketogenic diet will soon notice how their energy levels are stable throughout the day. No mid-afternoon slumps, no cravings for instant sugar or caffeine hits.

Fat (and the ketones produced from fat) are a readily available source of fuel and energy. Once someone is fat adapted and in ketosis, they will find they can easily go hours and hours.

Keto diet health benefits

DECREASES PAIN AND LOWERS INFLAMMATION

A ketogenic diet will be effective in increasing baseline pain thresholds and reducing both inflammatory and neuropathic pain

When we look to the available scientific literature, we see that the anti-inflammatory nature of the diet has been studied for many years.

Ketones aren’t only molecules to fuel our daily living, they’re also signaling molecules, they happen to affect inflammatory processes and structures.

Opiates, the most powerful drugs to treat pain, pose serious side effects and addictive potential and are sometimes ineffective.

Two major non-opioid strategies to address pain are focused on either reducing inflammation and inflammatory pain (particularly relevant to arthritis) or reducing neural activity and neuropathic pain (particularly relevant to diabetes and nerve injury).

A number of biochemical consequences of a ketogenic diet – decreased reactive oxygen species, decreased neural activity, increased adenosine and activation of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors – all suggest that a ketogenic diet will be effective in increasing baseline pain thresholds and reducing both inflammatory and neuropathic pain.

IMPROVES BRAIN FUNCTION

Another keto diet health benefit is associated with improving brain function. A ketogenic diet increases the number of mitochondria, so called “energy factories” in brain cells.

A recent study found enhanced expression of genes encoding for mitochondrial enzymes and energy metabolism in the hippocampus, a part of the brain important for learning and memory.

Hippocampal cells often degenerate in age-related brain diseases, leading to cognitive dysfunction and memory loss.

With increased energy reserve, neurons may be able to ward off disease stressors that would usually exhaust and kill the cell.

A ketogenic diet may also DIRECTLY inhibit a major source of neuronal stress, by -well- acting like a blueberry. As in its antioxidant effects.

Reactive oxygen species are unfortunate byproducts of cellular metabolism. Unlike the gas Oxygen, these “oxidants” have a single electron that makes them highly reactive, bombarding into proteins and membranes and wrecking their structure.

Increased oxidants are a hallmark of aging, stroke and neurodegeneration.

MAKES IT EASIER TO LOSE WEIGHT

As a real life example of one of the keto diet health benefits. A friend of mine had health problems due to which I advised her to go on a keto diet, since the prescription drugs she was using weren’t really helping her.

On top of her health improvements, she lost more than 60 pounds of weight.

And that’s without any added exercise, she didn’t join a gym where she would spent countless hours per days for weeks. No she just ate a keto diet meal plan which I prepared for her.

Her health problems are almost completely gone. She has way more energy than ever, no problems with hunger, and on top of that she lost a ton of weight, without any effort. As funny as it sounds her weight loss was basically a side effect of the keto diet.

All in all, if you have been on the fence, I personally suggest you try it out yourself, as it just might work for you.

 

REFERENCES:

  1. Dashti, H. M., Mathew, T. C., Hussein, T., Asfar, S. K., Behbahani, A., Khoursheed, M. A., … & Al-Zaid, N. S. (2004). Long-term effects of a ketogenic diet in obese patients. Experimental & Clinical Cardiology, 9(3), 200. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2716748/
  2. Noh, H. S., Lee, H. P., Kim, D. W., Kang, S. S., Cho, G. J., Rho, J. M., & Choi, W. S. (2004). A cDNA microarray analysis of gene expression profiles in rat hippocampus following a ketogenic diet. Molecular brain research129(1), 80-87. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15469884

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Author: Ivan Vlahinić

I am not a scientist. But i don’t have to be a scientist to be able to deftly use the scientific method in your daily life. In fact, you can be one helluva ‘thinker’ (in the scientific sense) and not be a scientist. For instance, nutritionists and personal trainers like me, who use and embrace science and the scientific method are better trainers because of it. Why? Because rather than just being a parrot and telling my clients what to do, because that’s what I have been told when I was younger I understand the “why” of my advice. And if I dont? Then I fully admit that i don’t, and that’s fine. The more you learn in the field of fitness and nutrition, the more you realize there is a lot of stuff that you dont know. But this is something that is true of all fields of work or life. The scientific method is the single most powerful way of thinking, that’s why I embrace it. Anecdotes are nice, but data and facts trumps anecdotes.

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