The proper diet plan is key to a successful Ketogenic Diet. Your diet should be broken down like this:
- 5% carbohydrates
- 75% fat
- 20% protein.
The presence of excess carbohydrates in the body raises sugar levels, which in turn elevates the amount of insulin produced. Because of this, you must keep your intake of carbohydrates as minimal as possible. Otherwise, it becomes much harder to burn unwanted body fat on a Ketogenic diet.
The point of this diet is to get your body burning ketones, which are produced when the body enters a ketogenic state, instead of sugars.
Keto and Insulin: What You Need to Know
Most adults have a diet that consists of breakfast, lunch and dinner with snacks between meals. This is not the ideal way to nourish your body and can cause pretty unpleasant side effects. These side effects include the accumulation of excess body fat, fatigue, memory problems, high blood pressure, anxiety, and diabetes.
What do all of these problems have in common? High levels of insulin. A Ketogenic diet combats elevated insulin to prevent and provide relief from the health concerns that it causes.
Ketogenic Diet: Stage 1
At the beginning, and as your body adjusts to its new diet, you will likely feel symptoms of low blood sugar, headache, hunger and food cravings. This is only temporary, but if you find yourself really struggling the addition of potassium and vitamin D can smooth out the process.
During the first stage of the Ketogenic diet, you will eat only three meals a day with no snacking in-between. This is important to getting started on the right foot, as you are trying to transition your body to function on fats instead of sugars.
You can add good fats to your meals to sustain yourself longer, stave off cravings and avoid the aches of hunger that are common at the first stage of achieving ketosis. Avacado, eggs and walnuts are great options that will keep you feeling fuller for longer.
It is also worth noting that some constipation can be expected at this stage. Additional potassium can cause this, as can getting adjusted to a new diet that is high in vegetables. To combat the sleepiness of keto fatigue, try adding more sea salt into your dishes.
Ketogenic Diet: Stage 2
After your body no longer experiences the temporary side effects of stage one, it’s time to graduate to two meals per day. This is something that is best done gradually, with your time between breakfast and lunch being stretched slowly.
During this stage, you will likely notice that you’re not experiencing much weight loss if any. This isn’t a cause for concern. The second stage of the Ketogenic diet encourages the building of muscle, which weighs more than fat. On the scale, you might not see a difference. It might even seem that you have gained weight! You should measure your waist to track your fat loss, rather than relying on your weigh-in numbers. If your waist is shrinking, then you’re on the right track.
It is during this stage that gout, acid, and stones can emerge and cause problems. Consuming adequate amounts of lemon juice counters the uric acid that causes these health concerns. You should continue sticking to your established diet plan, without cheating by snacking between meals. It will be tempting to go off-plan because of hunger, but in taking the wrong foods at this stage will cause your blood sugar levels to rise and increase your feelings of hunger tomorrow.
When stuck to diligently, the Ketogenic diet will help you to eat less by keeping your calorie intake high. Your body becomes more efficient over time, requiring less thyroid hormones. Because the Ketogenic diet is centered around a high amount of fat, you should be aware that fat is composed of two things: cholesterol and triglycerides. It is worth being mindful of your cholesterol for this reason.
Ketogenic Diet: Stage 3
The final stage of the Ketogenic diet consists of autophagy. Autophagy occurs when your cells recycle the damaged ones and clean the body of bacteria and fungi. Your skin will improve in appearance, your memory will become noteably sharper, and you’ll be saving big bucks on your grocery shopping expenses. Most Ketogenic dieters save between $300 and $600 per month by shopping for their new diet.
Getting to the benefits of the Ketogenic diet can be tough, but once you have pushed through the difficult first two stages, you’ll be astounded at the improvements you’ll see in your body.