Ketogenic diet: principles, cost, advantages and disadvantages

Ketogenic diet: principles, cost, advantages and disadvantages

Ketogenic diet: principles, cost, advantages and disadvantages,your health,harbouchanews

Not easy to follow, however, the ketogenic diet has more and more followers. If weight loss is on the agenda, reviews highlight harmful side effects, especially for the cardiovascular system.

Almost a century after being introduced as the therapy of last resort for children with epilepsy, the ketogenic diet is establishing itself as a quick way to lose weight .

What is the ketogenic diet?

This diet is based on a daily intake of around 90% fat,   8% protein and 2% carbohydrate. It's hard to know how many people are following it, but Google searches for the word "ketogenic" have increased in recent years, the MD website says .

Hollywood stars like Halle Berry and Vanessa Hudgens have helped democratize the ketogenic diet . And the video-on-demand platform Netflix has released a movie, The Magic Pill , to document people who use the diet to treat conditions like asthma, autism, diabetes, and cancer . Not surprisingly, the diet has also come under criticism , with some calling it "ridiculous" and potentially harmful. Moreover, even the followers find that it is not easy to follow, and not suitable for everyone.

A virtual absence of carbohydrates to break down fats

Because limiting the number of carbohydrates on your plate and adding a little fat is not enough. This regime is extremely strict . To achieve the ketogenic state, it is therefore necessary to follow it to the letter, and to eat very little carbohydrates , a lot of fat, and a lot of protein. This means that you have to keep your carbohydrate intake around 20 grams per day, which is the equivalent of a small apple . In less than a week, blood sugar levels stabilize and insulin levels drop. Without carbohydrates , the liver breaks down fat and converts it into energy. It thus produces compounds called ketone bodies which have several effects, including reducing hunger .

Effective in alleviating the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal?

What if this diet helped alcoholics to quit? In any case, this is the avenue explored by a team of researchers . They found that people with alcohol withdrawal had less severe symptoms if they followed a ketogenic diet in parallel. These findings were published in April 2021 in the journal Science Advances .

Researchers noted that when people become addicted to alcohol for a long enough period of time, their bodies begin to use less glucose for energy.: instead, they use acetate, which the body makes by metabolizing alcohol. Researchers have also found that those on a ketogenic diet have more "ketone bodies" to metabolize that can be used for energy.

The researchers asked 23 newly hospitalized alcoholics to follow a ketogenic diet and used 23 other patients as a control group. To assess the impact of the diet, the researchers measured the ketone and acetate levels in the volunteers once a week. They also looked for common markers of inflammation in people in rehab and assessed the amount of medication needed to help volunteers overcome their symptoms. All of the data suggests that the keto diet  does well in reducing withdrawal symptoms in volunteers.

Side effects and contraindications of the ketogenic diet

But the ketogenic diet comes with significant side effects. High fat intake can worsen heart health problems , and weigh down the liver. People with liver problems should also avoid this diet.

Nutritional ketosis can be accompanied by head pain, nausea, fatigue, and headaches for four to five days. The lack of fiber can cause constipation , and lack of vitamins , minerals and electrolytes can lead to kidney stones . It will therefore be necessary to weigh the pros and cons on the scale, and consult your doctor, before starting.

What can I eat?

Recommended foods

The recommended foods are foods that contain fat or protein.

  • The meat , including more fat: lamb chops, loin or ribs, entrecote of beef, chunks of lamb, pork, beef or veal stew (stews, blanquettes ...); 
  • The birds , with their skin duck, turkey, chicken, chicken;
  • The meats  : hams, sausages;
  • The fish , particularly fatty fish: herring, mackerel, sardines, salmon;
  • The eggs ;
  • The aged cheeses ; 
  • The nuts  : almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, pistachios ... and other nuts ,  avocado  and olives;
  • The seeds rich in lipids  : from chia , flax , pumpkin , sesame , sunflower ...
  • Tofu and tempeh ( high protein soy products ).
  • The fats in generous proportion.

Butter, sour cream and coconut oil are recommended daily , since they are rich in " short or medium chain fatty acids" , lipids that promote the process of ketosis. 

The canola oils and nuts are recommended on them for their omega 3 essential.   

It is advisable to drink at least 1.5 to 2 liters per day , in order to compensate for the low water intake of food (in general, foods high in fat contain little water).

Prohibited foods

Prohibited foods are the main sources of carbohydrates.

  • Breads, rusks and breakfast cereals; 
  • Starchy foods: pasta, rice, potatoes, semolina, corn, quinoa, sweet potato, pulses; 
  • The savory preparations paste  : quiches, pizzas, pastries; 
  • Breaded fish or meat; 
  • The  meals, soups and sauces trade ;
  • The sweet products  : cookies, cakes, pastries, chocolate bars, candies, jams, honey, table sugar; 
  • The sweet drinks  : soft drinks, fruit drinks, iced teas ... and fruit juices.

It is possible to use a synthetic sweetener (aspartame, sucralose, stevia, etc.) to "sweeten" coffee or tea or make desserts in which  the flour is replaced by ground hazelnuts or almonds.

Foods to moderate

Foods to moderate are foods with low carbohydrate content : 

  • The dark chocolate over 85% cocoa;
  • Milk and plain dairy products: yoghurts, fermented milk and fresh cheeses: maximum one per day (they provide lactose, which is a sugar);
  • Vegetables: maximum 150 g per meal; 
  • The  fruits least rich in sugar  : lemon, red fruits, papaya, watermelon: maximum 50 g (the equivalent of barely half a tray of raspberries) per day. Other fruits are not allowed. 

Is it compatible with special diets? 

Vegetarian diet

The ketogenic diet is compatible with a broad vegetarian diet that excludes only meats and allows the consumption of eggs, fish and seafood.

Vegan diet

The ketogenic diet, which excludes grains and pulses, is not compatible with a balanced vegan diet . Combining the two diets would mean eating only oleaginous fruits, seeds, oils and vegetables and would cause multiple deficiencies, especially in proteins, calcium , vitamins D and B12 ...

Gluten free diet

The ketogenic diet excludes the main foods that may contain gluten  : cereals and processed foods (dishes, soups, sauces, etc.). It is compatible with a gluten-free diet, provided you check the composition of certain products , such as cold cuts or ground steaks, in which gluten can be used as a texturizing agent.

Low salt diet

The ketogenic diet excludes major sources of salt  : store-bought breads and ready-made meals. It is compatible with a low-salt diet as long as you limit cold meats, cheeses, smoked or canned fish, canned vegetables, salted nuts and cooking salt.

Kosher diet

The ketogenic diet is compatible with a kosher diet , as long as you consume kosher meat and stick to permitted meats and fish.

Halal diet

The ketogenic diet is  compatible with a halal diet , as long as you consume halal meat, stick to authorized meats and avoid commercial products containing the additives  E 120, E 471 and E 472 .

What type of meals does this diet offer?

Example of a typical day providing 1500 kcal  

Breakfast : 

  • Unsweetened coffee or tea (possibility of sweetener);
  • 30 g (1 handful) almonds, walnuts or hazelnuts; 
  • 50 g of red fruits: strawberries, raspberries, blackcurrants, currants ...
  • Lunch and dinner:
  • 50 g of raw vegetables (the equivalent of a small grated carrot), vinaigrette with 1 tablespoon of walnut or rapeseed oil; 
  • 120 g of meat or fish or 2 eggs: cooking with 1 tablespoon of rapeseed or olive oil; 
  • 100 g of cooked vegetables (1 small plate), with 20 g (2 teaspoons) of butter or 60 g (2 tablespoons) of whole crème fraîche.

To taste :

60 g (the equivalent of 1/4 of a Camembert) of cheese OR 30 g of cheese and 100 g (1 ramekin) of whole milk cottage cheese. 

Benefits of the ketogenic diet

  1. The ketogenic diet  requires limiting processed foods and cooking at home (to avoid any trace of carbohydrates in store-bought foods), which is in line with current recommendations. At this level, it promotes the acquisition of good dietary practices; 
  2. Thanks to the ketones, the ketogenic diet suppresses the appetite, which makes it easier to follow it for weight loss (in conventional weight loss diets, hunger increases as you lose weight, which contributes to the " yoyo effect" );
  3. The ketogenic diet gives the possibility of eating fatty meats or cheeses , which are generally considered to be of better taste quality , since the fats carry the aromas. Some studies show an attraction to fat in overweight people, a taste which would explain their difficulties in following long-term weight loss diets low in lipids.
  4. Likewise,  fatty substances present in large quantities avoid dishes that are too dry  - as is the case in many weight loss diets - and allow you to vary the preparations  : gratins, sauces (without flour), fried foods, etc. 

Disadvantages of the diet

  1. The beginnings of the diet can be painful  : hypoglycaemia, headaches, fatigue, linked to the restriction in carbohydrates; nausea and bad breath, at least during the initiation of the process of ketosis;

  • The diet excludes many foods , breads and starches, sweet products and some fruits. It can become monotonous, frustrating, and quite quickly difficult to follow . It can probably cause eating disorders in some people;
  • The ketogenic diet has many contraindications: hypercholesterolemia, arterial hypertension, cardiovascular diseases, type 1 diabetes, chronic kidney disease, liver diseases such as fatty liver or "fatty liver"  (because it is the liver that takes care of it. make ketones), stomach ulcer , irritable bowel .
your health

Previous Post Next Post