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Understanding the Keto Diet

Pouring from a jar of nutsThe ketogenic diet has been around for more than 90 years, first designed in 1924 by Dr. Russell Wilder at the Mayo Clinic as a treatment for epilepsy. As more anti-seizure medications hit the market, the ketogenic diet became less popular. In 1994, the Abraham family started The Charlie Foundation promoting the ketogenic diet after their young son Charlie recovered completely from daily seizures while on the diet.

The ketogenic diet isn’t just a treatment for seizures, however. It is also ideal in the short-term for weight loss, reducing glucose levels, and improving insulin resistance.

Also known as a low-carb diet or the low carb, high fat (LCHF) diet, the ketogenic diet is high in fat, adequate in protein, and low in carbohydrates. When net carb intake is reduced and healthy fat intake increases, it changes the way energy is used in the body. Fat is now converted in the liver into fatty acids and ketone bodies, which are used as energy.

When you consume high amounts of carbs, your body will produce glucose and insulin. Glucose is the easiest molecule for your body to convert and use as energy, so it will be chosen over any other energy source, such as fat. Essentially, a diet that is high in carbs means the body burns glucose for energy, leaving your fat stores untouched.

By reducing carb intake, the body is induced into a state known as ketosis. During ketosis, we produce ketones, which are produced from the breakdown of fats in the liver.

The goal of the ketogenic diet is to force your body into ketosis through starvation of carbohydrates, which means your body will begin to burn fat for energy, rather than glucose.

In our next post we will discuss what you can eat on a ketogenic diet.

Wondering If Keto Can Help You?

We’d love to chat with you about the keto diet and how it may be beneficial for your lifestyle, as well as help you meet your overall wellness goals. If you’d like to learn more, feel free to contact our team today to book an initial consultation where you can ask us everything you’d like to know!

You can also read more about the ketogenic diet and what foods you can or can’t eat by checking out another blog here.
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