The ketogenic diet is famous for its weight loss benefits, but is there anything else it can offer? How does a drastic reduction in carbohydrate intake, a main feature of the diet, affect the body in general? And if there are indeed other benefits aside from weight loss, are they worth letting go of those beloved sugars and starches?
For anyone planning to go keto or having second thoughts halfway down their keto journey, here are seven reasons to keep going
All keto dieters experience what is known as the keto flu during their first few days. This is a brief episode characterized by headaches, nausea, and sometimes even confusion as the body begins to run on fats instead of carbs. But that’s all it is an episode. It will be overin a few days, and the body will soon burst with energy, thanks to fats being a more sustainable source of fuel than carbs.
Research suggests consuming more healthy fats and less Carbs or sugar protects the brain in a way that prevents anxiety and depression. This means people will feel generally happier and more emotionally in control. In fact, they will feel so in control that even their sugar cravings will be minimized studies have long proven the link between emotions and sugar). Best of all, as sugar consumption is reduced, carbs become less tempting too
Type 2 Diabetes and Cancer Prevention
How the keto diet fights type 2 diabetes is obvious – less carbs means less suigar and, therefore less chances of developing the disease. Things are more interesting with cancer though. The keto diet stalls the growth of malignant tumors, which thrive in high-sugar, high-insulin conditions. So while sugar essentially feeds cancer cells, ketones can give the body all the energy it needs without also nourishing the tumors.
Better Heart Health
It seems odd that a fat-laden diet would ever be healthy for the heart, but that might just be truie. In a yearlong study conducted in 2017, 22 out of 26 cardiovascular risk factors considerably improved in patients who were placed on nutritional ketosis. In particular, their bad cholesterol (LDL) levels dropped by 24%; their good cholesterol (HDL) levels rose by 18%; and their blood pressure, both systolic and diastolic, improved significantly.
Inflammation is linked to a myriad of diseases, such as arthritis, heart disease, colitis, type 2 diabetes and cancer. In a study, patients who went on a keto diet observed considerable improvements in their inflammation markers. For example, their C-reactive proteins (hsCRP) went down by 39%, while their white blood cell counts decreased by 9%. In a similar study, participants demonstrated a 29% drop in their hSCRP levels after switching to a low-carb diet.