What is a keto diet
A keto diet a deliberate reduction of glucose through low carbs while subsequently introducing high levels of fat in a diet. It was first used to introduce ketones and reduce glucose as the main source of energy in the brains of children suffering from drug-resistant epilepsy.
The word “keto” comes from the ketone bodies – acetone, acetoacetate, and beta-hydroxybutyrate , which are acidic chemicals, produced from fat by the body in extreme survival situations. The body gets its main energy supply from glucose. In the absence of glucose, the body starts converting fats to ketone bodies, as a source of energy, especially for the brain- a process called ketosis. Ketone bodies are toxic at higher levels, which could result is ketoacidosis, a life-threatening condition often seen in diabetic patients with low blood sugar. Their acidic nature gives them a peculiar smell, for this reason, people on a keto diet make have their breath or urine smelling like nail polish.
Today there are different adapted forms of the keto diet for epilepsy, various metabolic disorders, and weight loss.
Who should go on a keto diet
Keto diet is actually a medical therapy and must be adapted to the individuals. Some forms must be initiated in the hospital. Medically the keto diet is mostly used to treat epilepsy and other nervous system conditions like Parkinson, Alzheimer and Multiple sclerosis. People with Glucose Storage Diseases, Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome may also profit from it. However, a keto diet might cause or worsen other health problems like kidney stones, osteoporosis, stunted growth, and increased risk of clogged blood vessels through raised LDL-fats.
The classical keto diet is not a balanced diet. People on a keto diet tend to lack vital minerals and vitamins which should be substituted like Vit B, Calcium and Vit D.
Medically the keto diet is not seen as a permanent dietary solution.
Today the keto diet is widely popular for its weight loss benefits. However it is good to know, it is an expensive extreme dieting form which comes with side effects, so be clear with your goals. Keto diets are hard to maintain long-term and very few studies exist to prove its long-term weight maintenance results. Most people give up and regain the gained weight.
It is advised to only begin a keto diet under medical supervision. Speak to your doctor or dietician before starting a keto diet.