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Is the Keto Diet Good For You?

People always ask me, “What is your opinion on the Ketogenic Diet?” and “What is a Keto Diet”.

Here is a simple explanation: When eating a high fat and low carb keto diet, the body is forced into a process called ketosis to use fat (avocado, eggs, grass fed beef) for energy instead of carbohydrates (pasta, bread, even fruits).  A proper ketogenic diet calls for a very low amounts of carbohydrates, a reasonable amount of protein, and high amounts of fats.

There are four different types of keto diets:

  1. Standard ketogenic diet (SKD): This is a low-carb, moderate-protein and high-fat diet. It contains 75% fat, 20% protein and only 5% carbohydrates.  The body is forced into ketosis.
  2. Cyclical ketogenic diet (CKD): This diet includes stages of higher-carb refeeds, such as 5 ketogenic days followed by 2 high-carbohydrate days.
  3. Targeted ketogenic diet (TKD): This diet allows you to add carbs around your workout schedule. This is most appropriate for competitive athletes.
  4. High-protein ketogenic diet: This is similar to a SKD, but has you eating more protein. The ratio is usually 60% fat, 35% protein and 5% carbohydrate.

PROS: Overall, the keto diet has many healthy food choices.  It encourages you to consume more mixed berries and vegetables and healthy fats.  Also, the keto diet is strict with alcohol, unhealthy fatty foods, and sugary food consumption.

CONS: Even though some studies have shown that the keto diet can help with immediate weight loss, it is not a long-term solution because it is too extreme.  In fact, it can cause opposite effects (weight gain) for people with high amounts of stress.  If your life is already stressful and you decide to go on a keto diet, you will secrete more cortisol which can lead to weight gain around the midsection and chronic disease.

BOTTOMLINE:

So, is the keto diet good for you? If I had to say yes or no…my answer is no.  The standard ketogenic diet and most of it’s variations are too extreme and not sustainable. This diet will damage your metabolism in the long run.

My second answer is…it depends.

  • Ask yourself…Is your life stressful?  If so, then do not attempt the keto diet (or any of the variations).  It will only cause adrenal fatigue and hurt your metabolism.
  • If your life is low stress, then it might be interesting to experiment with the targeted ketogenic diet for a short period of time.  HOWEVER… playing around with this diet should only be used as a transition to a balanced and healthy eating plan.
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Discuss: “Is the Keto Diet Good For You?”

  1. October 4, 2018 at 10:48 pm #

    Thank you, dear Betsy! I have worked with you in the past and I’m now mostly vegetarian eating, a little fish now and then, dairy added in. I have so many family and friends doing Keto and losing weight and I always think this is something I need to try along with intermittent fasting. You bring me down to earth time and again. My life is way to stressful to mess with this right now. I need to get back on your program and control my portions, eating more often. Thank you for reviewing these diets. I would love to see you review Dr. Gundry’s thoughts on lectin containing foods sometime.

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