Ok…. So everyone is hearing more and more about “keto” and a “ketogenic diet”…. After all I have been practicing a keto lifestyle for almost 6 months now and have been posting all over Instagram and Facebook. So what is it..? What does it do…? Why…? Everyone who has a blog about keto, has a post about what ketosis and a ketogenic diet is. My contribution is a little different…. kind of like me.
I started writing this pulling together some of my resources and listing all of the chemical processes and chemical compounds that were created when our pancreas produces insulin and what breaks down and get stored where… etc., etc., etc…. So rather than regurgitate the same, proven, biological chemistry that occurs in our bodies and within our cells here is a list of sources that do a great job of explaining what ketosis is and what is needed to reach a state of ketosis.
- “Understanding Ketosis” by Chris Irvin, B.S. Biology w/ Exercise Science, M.S. Exercise and Nutrition Science
- “What is a Ketogenic DIet?” by Chris Irvin, B.S. Biology w/ Exercise Science, M.S. Exercise and Nutrition Science
- “Cutting Through the Fat: The Truth Behind the Ketogenic Diet” by Katie Mark
- “What is Ketogenic Lifestyle” by Jenny Laine at Fat Fueled Mama.
- The Keto Diet: The Complete Guide to a High-Fat Diet, with More Than 125 Delectable Recipes and 5 Meal Plans to Shed Weight, Heal Your Body, and Regain Confidence. by Leanne Vogel. (www.healthfulpursuit.com)
- Keto Clarity: Your Definitive Guide to the Benefits of a Low-Carb, High-Fat Diet by health blogger Jimmy Moore and researcher and internist Dr. Eric C. Westman.
- The Case Against Sugar by Gary Taubes.
- Why We Get Fat: And What to Do About It by Gary Taubes.
- The Obesity Code: Unlocking the Secrets of Weight Loss by Dr. Jason Fung
Then I thought back to a conversation I had with someone several weeks ago who was questioning the “sustainability” of a ketogenic lifestyle and essentially criticizing my choices. This person I really didn’t have a great response without getting into the nitty-gritty details of the chemical processes and such. So that got me thinking that I need a better “elevator pitch” to answer some of the naysayers and critiques.
For me, I aboslutely know what a ketogenic lifestyle is not…. It is not a fad!! I have been able to adopt this low carb high fat lifestyle relatively well within my schedule and situation. My elevator speech I think is something along the lines of:
I have chosen eat and to live in manner that is more in line with how our bodies existed for millenia before me. This lifestyle promotes a state of ketosis within my body by reducing the amount of carbohydrates and sugars that I ingest and increase the type and amout of fat that I consume. This combination of very low carbohydrates, moderate proteins, and high fats, promotes a steady glucose state and helps my body comfortably stay in ketosis, utilizing keytones as an energy source rather than glycogen and glucose. I have experienced the benefits of a ketogenic lifestyle:
Weight Loss – I have lost almost 20% of my starting weight.
Cholesterol – My cholesterol numbers are coming down. My LDL is dropping while my HDL is increasing.
Energy – I have more energy than I have ever had. I no longer experience slumps and crashes anytime during the day.
Hunger – By eating higher fats and very low carbs, my craving for food have almost vanished and in the same turn, my satiety level after eating is rock solid. I am able to go longer periods of time without eating, not because I am trying to restrict my meals, but simply because I am not hungry and my energy level remains high.
Blood Suger & Diabetes – I was pre-diabetic before I commited to this lifestyle. All of my pre-diabetic markers have reduced and my blood sugar remains low and steady.
Mental Clarity – No longer is my mind in a fog and sluggish! I wake up every morning with a clear head, vivid vision of the day with synapses firing on all cylingers!
Ultimately, it is what works for me. I do not expect to convert everyone I discuss this lifestyle with. I guess I could just as easily say …. “It’s biochemistry ya’ll”… Science has proven how our bodies breakdown nutrients that we eat. Do your research, both for and against keto, I did.