1. A Keto Diet Requires Thorough Planning
Following the keto diet successfully requires consideration and calculation of the amounts of carbs against fat verse protein.
Clinical nutritionists have stated that 5% of your daily calorie intake should come from carbs, and 15% from protein. The rest of the calories should come from fats — which means that the vast majority of your caloric intake will be fats.
In order to achieve sustained nutritional ketosis, it is crucial to stick to the proper nutritional ratios. This doesn’t necessarily mean that all you can eat is meat and avocado, you can (and should) substitute root vegetables for low-carbohydrate vegetables that grow overground.
2. You May Feel Lousy in the Beginning
At the start of your keto diet journey, you may feel lousy. In fact, it is not uncommon to experience fatigue-like symptoms after the first few days of cutting back on carbs, and these symptoms can go on for a while.
These initial side-effects are commonly reported as the “keto flu”, which include such things as headaches, low energy levels, sweet cravings, lethargy, and brain-fog. These can be normal because when you stop eating carbs, the body is subjugated to an energy crisis, and is thus forced to begin to burn fat for fuel instead of glucose.
Within a week or so of being on a ketogenic diet, these symptoms subside as the body adapts and regulates its energy metabolism to ketosis, but if the problems persist, you should be very careful and consider talking to a doctor.
3. You Will Lose Water Weight First
When first starting the keto diet, you may see a quick drop in your weight, but don’t get excited just yet — that isn’t due to fat loss.
Experts have said in the beginning the weight loss is largely water weight but can include some fat and muscle loss too. It takes a couple of weeks before your body starts to burn fat effectively.
It is essential to maintain the proper macronutrient ratios of fat, protein, carbohydrates, and to eat enough calories daily to avoid the unwanted loss of skeletal muscle tissue to ensure that you have a healthy overall diet.
4. It is Not an Excuse to Eat Whatever You Want
Although you can eat a substantial amount of food on the keto diet, it isn’t a free pass to consume endless amounts of foods such as butter and bacon. You still need to properly manage consumption of good fats and quality proteins.
Furthermore, you should avoid eating large amounts of protein on the keto diet. Assistant professor and radiation oncologist, Colin Champ, MD, from the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, stated that:
“Overeating protein in the diet could stall the act of ketosis. A successful keto diet needs to support healthy fat sources to support metabolism”.
5. Ketogenic Diets May Help With Type 2 Diabetes
Research has shown that the keto diet is helping to improve blood glucose, which can be a significant benefit to people with type 2 diabetes.
Dr. Saurabh Sethi, who specializes in gastroenterology, hepatology, and advanced interventional endoscopy in San Francisco, has stated that the ketogenic diet has improved blood sugar control for patients with type 2 diabetes.
Other doctors, such as Jason Fung, MD, has been treating patients with type 2 diabetes with a keto diet and fasting. However, long-term research and data are missing.
What Can You Eat on the Keto Diet?
Unlike other fad diets, you can still eat a lot of what you enjoyed before but should focus on good fats such as coconut oil, avocado, olive oil, grass-fed butter, and fatty cuts of meats from organic livestock. On the keto diet, you need to avoid sugar and carb-heavy food, like bread, cakes, cookies, candy, cereal, rice, pasta, ice cream, potatoes, store-bought sauces, and some fruits.