By recent ASU nutrition student Alysia Nelson
The ketogenic diet has recently gained popularity amongst fitness and health conscious individuals due to its highly successful results. Not only do people see quick results within their weight loss goals, but it has also been used to help treat numerous diseases.
- A Ketogenic diet reduces the sensation of hunger. The ketogenic diet focuses on fat as the body’s main energy source. The bonus of this diet is that fat is more satiating, keeping you full for a longer amount of time.1 This leads to a lower intake of calories, thus creating a prime formula for weight loss.
- Ketogenic diets rely on a natural bodily process called ketogenesis. On a carb restricted diet, the body must outsource to meet sugar needs. Ketogenesis is the process of fatty acids breaking down into ketones which ultimately become the new energy source for our body as opposed to glucose.1 The benefit of using ketones is that they provide the body with the same amount of energy without having an impact on blood sugar or insulin levels.1
- Ketones are a more efficient source of energy than glucose. When ketones burn they use different enzymes than sugar improving functions of the brain.1 Ketones act as an antioxidant protecting brain cells, help maintain the health of aging brain cells, enhance the capacity of brain cells preventing neurodegenerative diseases by stimulating the biogenesis of mitochondria, and support the survival and growth of neurons and their connections.1
- Ketones inhibit cancer cells. Cancer cells rely on glucose for genetic mutations and mitochondrial dysfunction.1 Having active burning ketones creates a hostile environment for cancer cells thus inhibiting their reproduction and ability to survive.
- A Ketogenic diet helps raise HDL levels. Although consuming a high amount of fat on the ketogenic diet may seem like it would increase LDL (“bad cholesterol”) levels, it’s an excess of carbohydrates that increases triglycerides. A ketogenic diet helps improve LDL levels by raising the HDL (“good cholesterol”).1
1 Ketones And The Brain: The Unique Benefits of Keto. (2018, January 10). Retrieved March 19, 2018, from https://www.ruled.me/3-reasons-keto-better-for-brain/
Editor’s Note: Fill Your Plate neither endorses or supports this type of diet, but encourages readers to always consult with your doctor regarding special diets. This series shares one nutrition student’s experience with the diet.