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Ketogenic Diet and Fitness: Can It Help Your Fitness Goals?

A lot of people want to be physically fit for a number of reasons. Some do it because they want to steer away from acquiring illnesses and diseases as they age, while others try it to gain self-esteem and make out the most in life. This is the reason why more and more people are hopping on the bandwagon of following diet fads. Once they see a personality, may it be a celebrity or social media influencer use a certain diet fad, they would immediately do the same. And among the diet fads going in and out of trend, the ketogenic diet has been one of the most popular.

Ketogenic diet or keto diet means you’ll be consuming foods which are adequate-protein, high-fat and low-carb. The primary goal of the ketogenic diet is to get more calories from protein and fat, rather than from carbs. This kind of diet works by depleting your body of its sugar storage so it will start breaking down protein and fat for energy – a process called ketosis. The ketogenic diet can help with your fitness goals because of the following benefits:

  1. It aids in weight loss: This is one of the most obvious reasons why many people are choosing to follow a ketogenic diet. Compared to using carbs for energy, your body will need to work more so it can turn fats into energy. Because of this, a ketogenic diet can speed up weight loss. And unlike other types of diet, the ketogenic diet is high-protein which means that you won’t feel hungry even when you consume a less amount of food.
  2. It reduces acne: There are many reasons why people suffer from acne. While some of these reasons are unavoidable (external factors such as dust and pollution), there are also some which can be controlled such as your diet and blood sugar. Consuming foods which are high in processed and refined carbs can cause fluctuations in your blood sugar and changes in the gut bacteria in your body. All of these can adversely affect your skin health – in short, can cause acne. Since the ketogenic diet aims to decrease your carb intake, it’s no surprise that it can also aid in reducing acne.
  3. It may help minimize the risk of cancer: Cancer is a lifelong illness which will require expensive medical treatment and can cause death if untreated. A ketogenic diet has been investigated on how it can help prevent and treat certain types of cancers. It was found out that a ketogenic diet can be apt for patients who are undergoing chemotherapy because this type of diet can cause oxidative stress in cancer cells. This means that a ketogenic diet can supplement the effects of chemotherapy in a patient’s body.

Additionally, a ketogenic diet can also help in reducing insulin complications since it aims to lower blood sugar levels. This benefit will make it easier and faster for cancer patients to pave their way towards recovery.

  1. It can improve heart health: Your heart is one of the most important organs of your body. It carries oxygen and other nutrients so every organ and system in your body can function well. Following a healthy ketogenic diet may improve your heart health by reducing cholesterol. This claim was supported with a study and concluded that following a ketogenic diet increases a person’s good cholesterol levels while significantly lowering bad cholesterol levels.
  2. It may protect brain functions: As people age, their brain functions start to deteriorate. This is the reason why seniors sometimes aren’t as sharp and alert compared to teenagers. Fortunately, a ketogenic diet can help delay this effect. It can also offer other neuroprotective benefits which can treat or prevent sleep disorders, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s Diseases. Some studies also claimed that following a ketogenic diet enabled children to improve their mental alertness and cognitive functions.
  3. It can help energy levels rise: During the first phase of your ketogenic diet, expect that you’ll experience headaches, confusion, nausea, and fatigue. Although this can be inconvenient, experiencing symptoms of the “keto flu” is normal. This is your body’s way of telling you that it’s making the transition of burning fat for energy, instead of carbs. This process might leave you exhausted for a couple of days, but after this fat-burning phase, you can enjoy more energy and endurance. This will allow you to do more within minimal time – something which can go a long way if you’re regularly working out.
  4. It can keep cravings at bay: Dieting can be a very difficult task to accomplish especially for people who always have food cravings. Following a ketogenic diet prevents you from being in this kind of situation. Since a ketogenic diet controls your blood sugar levels, it can also help keep your cravings at bay. This works because when your body is not on a sugar roller coaster caused by processed carbs, you’ll make better food choices. You’ll only eat when you’re hungry, not because you’re looking for your next hit of food.

A ketogenic diet is a game changer. If you can follow this diet consistently in the right manner, you’ll enjoy several benefits not only today but in the next few years, as well. For you to be guided with your efforts in following a ketogenic diet, use a keto macros calculator first. This tool will allow you to understand the calories and macronutrients your body needs so you can achieve the best possible results while following this diet.

First Things First

Following any kind of diet will require your body to undergo drastic changes. If your body can’t handle these changes well, your health will be compromised in the long run. Instead of achieving your fitness goals, adapting to a ketogenic diet might cause more harm than good to your overall wellness. Steer away from this direction by talking to your doctor or nutritionist first. Consider their professional advice so you can achieve better results from a ketogenic diet.

 

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