Have you been hearing a lot about the ketosis or “keto” diet but not quite sure what it is? Here’s a brief guide to keto and how it can help you get lean in a healthy, natural way!
What is ketosis?
Ketosis, or being in a state of ketosis, means your body has an elevated level of ketones in the blood stream and is characterized by the burning of your body’s fat for fuel. Your body enters ketosis when it is depleted of carbs and your glycogen levels drop. This triggers your body to start using fat stores for energy instead of carbs or your body’s protein. This diet is very similar to the popular Atkins diet and Paleo diet but is more strict and intense.
How does keto work with your body?
The keto diet is extremely effective for getting lean and losing weight because you actually reset your body’s enzymatic machinery. Basically, by depriving your body of carbohydrates it will start using fat as its primary fuel source instead of carbohydrates.
How do I know when I’ve reached ketosis?
Ketone test strips (found in your local pharmacy) contain a special chemical that changes color in the presence of excess ketones. By testing your urine with these strips and following the color coded guide for the strip you’ll be able to tell if you’re in ketosis.
What do you eat to reach Ketosis?
Fats, protein, and certain veggies. Generally, it’s good to stay between 20 – 50g of net carbs (read below) per day. These carbs should come from veggies or nuts because they also contain necessary nutrients and fiber.
Fat is crucial in keto; It’s what your body is now using for energy. When your body switched to using fat for energy it will need something to burn! Eating fats also helps keep you full and keeps you from slipping into bad eating habits. You can get extra fats from things like avocados, oils and bacon (yes, bacon!).
The proper balance of macronutrients for a keto diet is 60% fat, 30% protein and 10% carbs. Getting somewhere around these percentages is optimal for achieving keto.
Pro-tip: Sugar (digestible sugars, not sugar alcohols) is a carbohydrate and can kill your keto diet. Try using a stevia based sweetener instead. [See what we’re using here]
So no carbs? What about fiber?
Fiber is technically a carb but since it does not produce an insulin response you can count these carbs differently in keto. Net carbs is a term you’ll often hear in keto. It essentially means you take the total carbohydrates in food and subtract the fiber and sugar alcohols (different from normal sugars) to get the true carb count of that food. So fiber is not included in your overall carb count.
What can I drink while doing keto?
WATER! WATER! WATER! Water is crucial to the keto diet because your body begins to rid your muscles of glycogen, the stuff that holds on to water. In ketosis your body isn’t retaining water like it used to and you need to drink more to replace what’s lost.
You can also drink coffee and tea without the sugar. Here’s a great recipe for the ultimate keto breakfast: Bulletproof Coffee.
Is keto right for me?
Sure! Keto is a great way to lose weight but be warned, it is not a quick or easy fix. The ketosis diet is more of a lifestyle than a diet. Proper meal and nutrition planning is the key to achieving and maintaining ketosis.
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Bulletproof Coffee – This keto friendly recipe is packed with good fats and energy for an extra boost of satiety and productivity.
**We encourage you to research more and always consult a physician before starting a new diet or exercise program.