What is the Keto Diet?
It’s the holy grail of diets!
According to some staunch keto’ers, it’s the best thing since sliced keto cheese but the truth is it’s just an eating strategy. I consider a keto diet to be effective for several reasons but only if done the correct way. Which would suggest it can be done incorrectly.
As with most diets, the pure version emerges into pockets of society and by the time it’s been absorbed into the vernacular it’s morphed into some other lesser version.
This we have seen with the keto V2, otherwise known as Dirty Keto, whereby popular indulgences are woven into the fabric of the pure version to satisfy the Western palate and viola ….a less healthy version and one which promotes keto from a macro-nutrient perspective but doesn’t take into account micro-nutrients and overall health. Sure you can get into ketosis by eating junk but what is the point and have you pushed the needle in a positive direction?!
The alternative way to look at keto (and not to sound too wanky) is to view it as a lifestyle, a more holistic approach will be better for health outcomes across the board. This lifestyle I refer to doesn’t necessarily apply to being in keto 24/7 because that’s not practical or necessary but could be an approach by which one oscillates from keto to low carb, to moderate carb. However, running in the background to everything are some founding pillars.
• Eat predominately natural and unprocessed foods
• Keep hydrated
• Exercise regularly
• Source ethical meat and seafood
• Choose sustainable sources of produce
• Practice mindfulness
• Foster a consistent sleep routine that yields 7-8 hours daily
The keto diet can elicit some positive health outcomes such as:
• Lower triglycerides
• Promote mitochondria biogenesis
• Improve insulin sensitivity
• Reduce inflammation
• Promote autophagy
• Promote neural biogenesis
However, the net wins are only achieved if health is the goal and keto is the proxy – with the founding pillars orbiting the strategy.
Most of us can achieve ketosis and get into it relatively quickly but staying there and being there for the right reason(s) is the all-important consideration. If you’re chasing some of the benefits listed above then your eye is focussed on health. GOLD!
If you’re chasing it because you’ve seen it trending on Instagram or because Kim Kardashian did it, and want to know what the fuss is all about it’ll most likely be a short-lived relationship. The definition of ketosis is having elevated blood ketones and is marked as >0.5mmol ketones in the blood which is the quantitive measure but it doesn’t measure the quality of the approach – that’s the holistic aspect of the keto lifestyle I mentioned. The keto diet isn’t the solution to everyone’s’ health goals and weight management,
but if executed as part of a holistic strategy, that incorporates some or all of the points above, then it can most definitely help.
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