There are always new diets trending- Atkins, Keto, South Beach- giving you conflicting information that only gets in the way of your summer slim down.
Picking a new eating routine is no easy feat, so you don’t want to invest time and money into a system that neglects your health and goals.
The keto diet has had countless success stories, but it also comes with some warnings that shouldn’t be ignored.
Celebrities like Jenna Jameson, Mama June, and Halle Berry swear by the ketogenic diet (keto for short), and their before and after photos speak to the extreme results the diet can produce.
But a healthy diet is not about weight loss alone!
The secret behind the diet’s ability to drop so many pounds in a short amount of time is the low carbohydrate intake it calls for.
On a ketogenic diet you are to restrict your carbohydrates to under 50 grams a day, according to Health, putting the body in a state of ketosis, where you are burning fat rather than sugar for energy.
Please be advised that all information in this article is not meant to replace medical advice, and you should consult your doctor before making any dietary changes.
Studies show that the keto diet specifically is good for reducing seizures, and is supported by experts for its anti-aging, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer effects.
However, the ketogenic diet as a lifestyle choice is not heavily supported by experts in the field.
There are dozens of less than ideal side effects — such as “keto diarrhea” as it is called by sufferers everywhere- and health risks.
But perhaps the most controversial aspect of the diet is the “unsustainable nature” of it, as Health puts it.
Just as in any diet, there is a healthy and an unhealthy way to do it. It’s important that all food is eaten in moderation, and that all the essential food components are accounted for.
Josh Axe, a natural medicine doctor and clinical nutritionist, warns about some side effects that may make you want to rethink the keto diet as your avenue for weight loss success.
If you are having to stop at every rest stop between home and work, then you may have fallen victim to keto diarrhea.
Axe suggests that the gallbladder may be to blame, reports Family Circle, with all the fat to break down in the diet it becomes “overwhelmed”.
If you are an athlete, or enjoy your morning runs, you may need to choose a more suitable meal routine than keto, because research has revealed it could be a game changer- and not in a good way.
The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness contained a study recently by Weiss and his colleagues showing how high-intensity cycling and running tasks were worse on a ketogenic diet than on a high-carb diet.
While you are on a ketogenic diet, your body goes into an acidic state of ketosis, which Weiss protests may be the reason the athletes are unable to operate at peak performance.
Athletes aren’t the only ones facing dangers.
As if diabetics didn’t have enough to consider at all hours of the day, ketosis can cause a deadly condition called ketoacidosis.
When the body stores too many ketones (acids produced from burning fat), the blood turns too acidic.
Acidic blood hurts the liver, kidneys, and brain; turning into a life and death situation overnight.
Even if you don’t have diabetes, you want to be on the lookout for symptoms of ketoacidosis, because it has been discovered in some individuals on the keto diet that had no pre-existing condition.
Health reports on what to watch out for:
“Symptoms of ketoacidosis include a dry mouth, frequent urination, nausea, bad breath, and breathing difficulties; if you experience these while following the keto diet, check in with a doctor right away.”
Perhaps the most alarming data is a study out of Munich presented at the European Society of Cardiology Congress that showed people on low-carb diets had a higher risk of dying from cancer, cardiovascular conditions, and various other causes than those who consumed carbs in moderation.
If you are looking for a short-term, extreme weight loss plan (Axe recommends 30-90 days), then the ketogenic diet may be exactly what you are looking for.
To stay looking as good on the inside as you do on the outside, try to include whole food sources of nutrients.
Forbes reports on the foods you should be focusing on to get the nutrients you need:
“Most common Keto-friendly foods include low-carb vegetables (think bell pepper, cauliflower, spinach and zucchini), eggs, cheese, unprocessed and grass-fed meat and seafood.”
The keto diet isn’t for everybody, but it may work for you as a kickstart to a healthier lifestyle with a higher quality of life.
There is no diet fad that replaces a well-maintained lifestyle full of all physical exercise and a healthy clean diet; which can be obtained quicker than you think, as Better Change Project has previously reported. (h/t Better Change Project)