ketogenic Diet Plan: Foods, Keto Diet Benefits & Side Effects!

The ketogenic diet plan is based on a diet very rich in fats (or lipids) and very low in carbohydrates. Our average diet usually comprises about 50% carbohydrates, 35% fat and 15% protein. The Keto Diet is a fat burning plan which balances the percentages of foods to get a healthy lifestyle, thanks to mixture of rich recipes. But what are exactly Ketogenic Diet Benifits and Side Effects?

In a keto diet process, the composition of meals consists of about 5% carbohydrate, 15% protein and 80% fat! Its health benefits are the subject of numerous publications. With the help of nutritionist Anthony Berthou, we explain this diet consisting mainly of fat and its health benefits. However, be careful to read the article to the end because it is not a miracle method. The purpose of the article is to present this mode of feeding, without promoting it.

What are we eating in a keto diet?

Rule # 1: Focus on high-fat foods

  • Good oils: olive, rapeseed, coconut, nuts, etc.
  • Dairy products: whole milk and cream, coconut milk and coconut cream, raw milk cheeses, yogurts, unsweetened plant milks
  • Meat, fish and eggs
  • Nuts and seeds: nuts, hazelnuts, almonds, cashews, pistachios, pecans, chia seeds, sesame seeds
  • And to replace cereal flours: coconut flour, nuts, almond or hazelnut powder, soy flour (in limited quantity, see our article on soy)

Rule # 2: Restrict consumption of carbohydrate foods

  • Sugar and sweet products (sweets, pastries, chocolates containing less than 85% cocoa)
  • Overly processed foods, type prepared dishes
  • Pasta, rice and cereals
  • The bread
  • Foods rich in starch (potatoes, sweet potato, etc.)
  • Legumes (lentils, chickpeas, etc.)
  • Sodas and fruit juice

ketogenic diet food

Rule # 3: Maintain protein intake at breakfast and lunch

  • Animal protein foods: meat, fish, eggs
  • Vegetable proteins: soy, almonds, cashew nuts, etc.

Rule # 4: Choosing Vegetables Low in Carbohydrates and Limiting Fruit foods

  • Vegetables: cabbage, endive, spinach, lettuce, eggplant, asparagus, cucumber, zucchini, fennel, green beans, leek, broccoli, celery, pepper
  • Fruits: The need for carbohydrate intake varies from one individual to another. Fruits are excluded for people whose threshold is low. For people whose threshold is higher, it is possible to consume small berries (blueberries, currants, currants, raspberries, strawberries)

The ketogenic diet, Health Benefits

First, this high-fat diet has proven its effects on diabetes and weight loss. Indeed, this low carbohydrate diet helps to better regulate our sensitivity to insulin. However, in people with diabetes, the production of insulin to regulate blood sugar levels is failing. The ketogenic diet recipes can treat the root health problem by limiting the intake of carbohydrates and therefore the need for insulin production. As insulin levels decrease, insulin resistance improves. This better management of blood glucose has also shown its health benefits on weight loss and fat burning diet. The large variations in blood sugar levels lead to poor management of our appetite.

By significantly reducing glycemic peaks, the keto diet plan can better regulate appetite, weight loss and many other health issues. Moreover, by drawing its energy directly into the fat cells, this diet helps to promote thinning. But this is not a miracle diet: this type of diet can cause side effects (see below).

In addition, some studies have shown beneficial health effects of the ketogenic diet on Alzheimer’s disease. Glucose is normally the main food of the brain (and therefore neurons). But, in people with Alzheimer’s, the neuronal functioning, and especially the use of glucose, is impaired. Thanks to keto diet plan benefits, the ketone bodies will then act as neuroprotective agents by allowing the production of another usable energy source. They will also reduce the production of free radicals, molecules that attack our cells when they are present in excess in our body.

This keto diet could also have beneficial effects on cancer. The cancer cells essentially eat glucose, and have a glucose assimilation activity and increased energy production: up to 200 times higher than healthy cells. The ketogenic diet could help limit tumor progression by limiting the uptake of glucose by cancer cells, and therefore their energy production.

keto diet plan benefits

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Attention, nothing is established at the moment: interesting health benefits have been obtained in mice (stomach cancer and brain tumors) but no solid health clinical study has been validated for the moment in cancer patients who used a keto diet plan for at least 60 days.

Finally, the ketogenic meal plan has shown beneficial results on the treatment of epilepsy, in particular by reducing convulsive seizures by 30 to 40% in children. Epilepsy has long been treated by fasting as first benefit, among other things, but this model could not be sustained for a long time, especially by children. The alternative represented by the ketogenic diet has therefore quickly become a more durable means of treatment against epilepsy.

Indeed, ketones produced by the body have properties to reduce epileptic seizures. In addition, glucose could increase the excitability of nerve cells when it provides energy even if the latter point is not validated at the moment. This diet is less effective for treating epilepsy in adults.

The binding keto diet requires a follow-up

Before you start, be aware that this fat burning plan requires a deep and rigorous change in eating habits! The ketogenic diet is a diet that needs to be followed very strictly: any difference causes discomfort for one to two days.

Whether you consider this keto diet for therapeutic purposes or not, it is essential to be supervised by a health professional at least initially. Indeed, calculations are needed regarding the individual energy requirement and the carbohydrate, lipid and protein portions. In particular, this keto diet plan must necessarily be isocaloric (that is to say that the amount of calories absorbed must not decrease), otherwise you risk producing ketone bodies in excess.

This can then cause acidification of the blood (called ketoacidosis) which can cause among other things nausea, vomiting, constipation, increase of the respiratory rate, or even coma in the most serious cases. It can also lead to mineral deficiencies (potassium in particular) because with this type of diet plan, the kidneys eliminate more accelerated minerals. It is therefore necessary to regularly check certain biological constants by a blood test, and to check its glucose and ketone levels with a glucometer.

ketogenic diet Side Effects

Nevertheless, the long-term effects of a ketogenic diet are unknown. A permanently unbalanced diet induces in fact vitamin and mineral deficiencies and risks of cardiac or metabolic disorders. A state of continuous metabolic acidosis also leads to demineralization and increased risk of dehydration. Finally, high levels of ketones can cause kidney failure or even cerebral edema but in only 5% of cases.

In the end, it appears that the physiological response to this type of diet is very different depending on the individual. Some would be more sensitive to a high fat / fat ratio when others, for example people with a high level of insulin resistance, get a better result with a diet low in carbohydrates.

There are similar diets that are somewhat more flexible with less side effects, such as Custom Keto Diet, Low Carb or Low Carb High Fat (LCHF) diet plans: they have a similar goal but represent a less strict alternative to the ketogenic diet.

ketogenic diet plan

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