How does the Keto diet work?

The basics of the ketogenic diet: adapting to transform your metabolism.

Contrary to popular belief, what makes your diet fattening is sugar, not fat. In a ketogenic diet (also called Keto), you need to eat a lot of fat. Fat is not stored, it is used by your body as fuel.

The Keto diet consists of eating less than 5% of calories per day from carbohydrates (about 15/20g) and more than 200g of fat, but also to pay attention to all its nutrient intake, lipids, proteins … in order not to suffer deficiencies and derail its metabolism to enter ketosis. But before you get there, your transition must be done gently. Start by eliminating so-called fast sugars from your diet and control your food intake so that you do not consume more than 100g of carbohydrates per day. Then gradually reduce to 40g.

The Keto diet is also suitable for vegetarians and vegans, but the adaptation will take longer. On average, it takes almost 1 year to enter ketogenic adaptation.

Here are the benefits of the Keto diet and how to start the transition.

The keto diet as a source of improvement of your well-being:

  • Reduces chronic inflammation
  • Allows you to have more energy and therefore a better sporting activity
  • Dissolves mental fog
  • Reduces depression and anxiety
  • Reduces migraines
  • Facilitates weight loss in the case of obesity
  • Allows a better sleep

The keto diet to cure diseases:

  • Reduces type 2 diabetes
  • Reduces cholesterol
  • Prevents cardiovascular diseases
  • Prevents the risk of brain diseases: Alzheimer and Parkinson
  • Reduces attention and hyperactivity disorders
  • Alleviates autism-related disorders
  • Reduces the risk of epileptic seizures
  • Soothes disorders related to Crohn’s disease
  • Soothes disorders related to multiple sclerosis
  • Reduces disorders related to PCOS
  • Prevents the risk of cancer

Steps to a successful Keto transition:

  • Start with a blood test to check your fasting blood sugar level, your cholesterol level and your vitamin D level,
  • Gradually reduce carbohydrates (allow 1 to 2 months for transition),
  • Start by reducing fast sugars (cakes, pastries, sweets),
  • Make sure that the 20g of carbohydrates allowed come mainly from green vegetables,
  • Take your blood pressure regularly,
  • Buy a blood glucose and ketone meter,
  • Be prepared to track and calculate your macros on a daily basis!

When starting a ketogenic transition, one should expect to follow a very strict diet in order to go into ketosis quickly and have a more varied and less disciplined diet.

During the transition, strict prohibition of consumption:

All sweet products: cakes, cookies, candy, ice cream, pastries …
Cereals: bread, flour, rusk, rice, oats, wheat, spelt, corn, quinoa, millet, buckwheat…
Pulses: lentils, peas, red and white beans, peanuts, cashew nuts…
Almost all fruits: except avocado, lemon, lime, coconut
Some vegetables that are too sweet: all squash, onions, carrots, beets, leeks.
Beware of processed products, even organic ones
All cheeses
Industrial sauces.

For example, an apple contains about 28g of carbohydrates while you are only allowed 15/20g per day.

So what do you eat during a ketogenic transition?

Fat! You should generally count on at least 200g of fat intake per day when you are in ketosis. However, it is necessary to start a softer transition in order not to destabilize your metabolism. We will start with 100g of fat mainly ingested in hot drinks and cooking. But be careful to control your protein intake as well, because the body transforms the excess ingested into sugar! On average, it is necessary to consume the equivalent of your weight in grams (60kg = 60g of protein per day). For example, if you want to eat a 100g chopped steak, it will be necessary to eat half at lunchtime and the other half in the evening.

To help you, here’s an idea of how to break down your food for a typical day:

  • Breakfast: eggs, fatty meat, salad, avocado, high-fat drink.
  • Lunch: rice, lentils or sweet potatoes (100g cooked) with a portion of protein.
  • Snack: hot drink with fat, some macadamia nuts or coconut yogurt.
  • Dinner: vegetables with a portion of protein.

Tips for a good Keto diet:

To begin your transition, don’t hesitate to favor low carb recipes, but also follow these few tips to avoid falling into a period of “ketoflou” that will make you feel sick.

  • Drink 2L of water per day,
  • Absorb less than 20g of carbohydrates,
  • Consume 20/25g of protein per meal,
  • Consume 200g of fat,
  • Do not hesitate to take food supplements: sodium, magnesium, potassium, minerals..,
  • Sleep before 10 pm if possible,
  • Take at least 3 meals a day.

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