April 23, 2019

Unpopular Opinion: The Ketogenic Diet Should Be Avoided

On our instagram we discussed the Ketogenic Diet about a month ago. First and foremost, we explained on our instagram why research today says to avoid this diet.
Ketogenic diet defined:
•70-80% comes from fat
•20-25% comes from protein
•5-10% comes from carbs

America is one of the largest countries known for diet fads that fall and rise according to media and what our celebrities are doing. Now many are on this diet and wonder why is this diet problematic?! If you break this down into calories, based on a 2000 calorie average diet, your diet on the Ketogenic diet would consist of 1200 calories of fat, 700 calories from protein, and only a 100 kcals from carbohydrates.
The recommended diet that our bodies understand  should consist of 45-65% carbohydrate (1300 calories), 10-35% protein (~400 calories) , and 20-35% fat. When you compare this to the recommended macronutrient breakdown you can see how drastically different they are and how difficult following the keto diet can be. People expect to lose weight on this diet, or think it is healthy or even that your brain prefers ketone bodies as their preferred energy source. Most cells prefer to use blood sugar, which comes from carbs, as the body’s main source of energy. However, the brain is specifically designed to run off of glucose exclusively and is therefore dependent on dietary carbohydrates.

This diet lacks carbs which means it is rich in fats and proteins. Cutting out a whole food group like this can lead to many micronutrient deficiencies. When cutting out carbohydrates you are cutting out a lot of foods that are fortified with vitamins and minerals.
Because of the low carb content in this diet, after being on this diet for a couple of days our body will exhaust all of our stored carbohydrates in our liver and muscle cells. This is what results in majority of the weight loss. This is because carbohydrates have the ability to store water, so when removed from your diet you are losing weight but this is due to water loss as fats don’t store water like carbohydrates do. And when carbohydrates are re-introduced the weight gain will be in excess of what was lost.

Medically, research only supports the Ketogenic diet long term for patients that are epileptic as this diet leads to a rise in beta oxidation and ketone bodies. With ketone bodies as the energy source, the neuron does not have its traditional energy source and therefore has been seen to reduce seizures. Besides epileptic patients, medical professionals have been releasing research to prove this not ideal for ourselves and is just another diet fad that will too pass. But heck, a new fad of a protein elixir of cockroach milk has recently made an appearance as a recovery drink that is high in protein and carbohydrates and you would never catch me with that drink. Hopefully many soon see that by following this Ketogenic diet, the effects and weight loss are only temporary and will be gained back in excess when carbohydrates are consumed again.

If you have any questions, please feel free to comment or message us on any of our social media platforms!

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About Kaci Koch