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Starting any new lifestyle diet can sometimes be pretty scary. The one that I find scares people the most is the KETOGENIC LIFESTYLE DIET. You may have heard all of the rage about it and people trying and having huge success with it. BUT my opening one-liner seems to get people's attention, and not in an “I NEED TO TRY THIS” way. More like, “YOU’RE CRAZY AND THERE’S NO WAY THIS WILL POSSIBLY WORK" way.
What is the Ketogenic diet?
The keto diet is a diet that requires you to eat moderate proteins, low carbs and….wait for it………HIGH FATS!
At this point I tend to lose people. “How can eating a lot of fat make me lose fat? Isn’t fat bad for you?”
Let me break this down for you guys.
When I start to create a keto meal plan for my clients, first I will drastically reduce their carbohydrate intake to 20-30 grams per day. (Typically a person who consumes around 2,000 calories per day will be taking in roughly 250 grams of carbohydrates per day. Keep in mind that everyone's caloric intake is different based off of weight and activity level).
That's quite the jump, hey!
I have some clients who right away said, “Well if you take the calories from the carbs away, won’t I be starving my body?”
The answer is NO.
How I balance all of that out is that I will take the calories from the carbohydrates that you used to be eating and CONVERT them into the calories from fats.
I don’t starve your body of the CALORIES. I starve it of the CARBOHYDRATES. So you are still getting all of your daily recommended calories, I am just switching WHERE those calories are coming from.
What does it mean to be in Ketosis?
By taking away the carbohydrates and replacing them with more fats, your body will fall into a metabolic state called KETOSIS. At this point, your liver will start producing things called KETONES. This process takes about 3-4 days. (You can buy pee strips at Wal-Mart to check and see if your body is really in ketosis).
Ketones are an alternative fuel source that the body creates when there is not enough sugar or glucose (found in carbohydrates) to fulfill your body’s “fuel needs”. So instead of running on glucose all day from carbohydrates, your body will transition into using the fats in your body as a fuel source.
“Isn’t eating fats bad for the liver?”
Well yes if you try to go it alone and start pumping margarine and massive amount of bacon in it!
It is NOT HARMFUL to your health if you make an effort to make sure that you are feeding your body the right amounts of HEALTHY FATS (Avocados, Butter, Whole Eggs, Nuts, Fish).
Triglycerides and Liver Function
When you have a high blood triglyceride level, that means that you are involved with a diet that is high in fructose which in turn means that you have a diet that is high in carbohydrates.
The higher your triglyceride levels are, the fattier your liver will get. So, just reading that single comment should make you think that keto is a good idea because of its lack of carbs.
In many studies, a fatty liver doesn't get there all by itself. One thing that will help it get there is having a deficiency in CHOLINE.
What is choline?
Choline is a macronutrient found in foods that are important for healthy liver function, energy levels, and carrying out a steady and healthy metabolism.
A ketogenic diet is very high in this. Choline is found in foods such as egg yolks, dairy products, shrimp, fish, beef, and nuts. These foods will actually HEAL your liver. Not hurt it.
So all in all, wrapping your mind around eating a lot of high-fat foods can be a task in itself. Yes, like any lifestyle diet, it requires sacrifice but what you get in return amounts to much more than you will have to give up. The results are real and they come very fast. You won’t be bloated (retain water), you will have higher energy levels, and you can rest easy knowing that you’re only doing good things for your body by taking out the carbohydrates.
Credits to my man DAVE PALUMBO for creating this fantastic diet. Check him out on YouTube under RX Muscle. He is an incredibly bright man with many credentials and life experience to prove it. For this and many more reason, his advice is something that I take home with me and apply to my life and those of my clients.
Please keep in mind that you should know the best daily caloric intake for your body and its activity level BEFORE you decide to jump on keto. By not doing this, you will end up gaining more weight in the end because you will either be starving your body OR underfeeding it. This diet (like any other) requires carefully calculated macros to avoid additional weight gain and to get you to your goals in the quickest and healthiest way possible!
If you have any questions about meal planning for keto or any other meal plan/training program, feel free to email me at [email protected]
Take care everyone!!