Being overweight is one of the most critical health problems that affect a significant part of the world’s population today, especially with its associated risks of heart diseases, morbidity and mortality.
To minimize its damaging effects, we have to start adopting effective weight-loss practices, such as altering our lifestyle, incorporating regular exercise, and of course, embracing a healthy diet. Each of us needs to have a weight management plan that suits us specifically, and one of the most effective ways is a ketogenic diet, or keto diet in short.
A keto diet is a diet which consists of sufficient proteins, high fats and low carbohydrates. So what is the relationship between the keto diet and weight loss?
How Does The Keto Diet Work?
The keto diet entails the intake of a high amount of fats and reduced amount of carbohydrates. This combination allows the body to get into a metabolic state known as ketosis.
Under ketosis, your body effectively converts fats into ketones, which supply energy all over the brain. As you continue using this diet, your brain and body get used to burning ketones and fat, as opposed to carbohydrates, for energy production. This low-carb consumption then ensures that you lose weight in a healthy manner.
A keto diet is more than reliable and competent in helping you to shed excess weight, combat diseases and yet maintain a considerable muscle mass.
The keto diet helps you lose weight through these 5 mechanisms:
1) Food elimination
When you adopt a keto diet, you immediately limit your food options. Most of the time, you will eat foods that contain low carbohydrates. As a result, a low intake of calories causes significant weight loss.
2) Appetite suppression
Junk food is often one of the key contributors to obesity. A keto diet eradicates this bad eating habit, helping you feel satiated through altering the hunger hormones known as ghrelin and leptin. Under the keto diet, you only eat when it is essential to do so, thus preventing any unnecessary weight gain.
3) Decrease in fat storage
A keto diet plays an important role in reducing lipogenesis – a process that converts sugar into fats. This helps reduce fat stores in the body, which in turn stops weight gain.
Stemming from increased protein intake and reduced carbs, gluconeogenesis is the process of converting proteins and fats (due to the lack of carbohydrates) into glucose as fuel for our cells. This process can allow the body to burn extra calories and lose excess weight.
5) Enhanced insulin sensitivity
A keto diet increases insulin sensitivity, which improves metabolism and fuel usage, hence helping you cut down on excess weight.
The above points can sound overly confusing if we delve into the details, but if there’s just one thing to take away from all this, it’s that a keto diet is one of the best ways of losing weight by focusing on foods that are rich in fats, moderate in proteins and low in carbohydrates.
This combination can suppress your appetite, decrease the storage of fats, burn more calories and maintain proper cholesterol levels so that, in the end, you can lose weight and live healthier!
If you are a beginner interested in embarking on a keto diet, you can refer to this post where we go into the basics of a keto diet plan and provide a sample 5-day menu you can start with.