5 Proven Keto Benefits of a Low-Carb Lifestyle
For most of us, we’ve been told our entire life that carbs are a necessary component of a well balanced diet. How can there be any keto benefits when a ketogenic lifestyle requires lower carb intake? Let’s explore.
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Carbs are indeed an important part of the human metabolic process. They are stored in our liver and muscle cells in the form of glycogen. Their role is to serve as a quick source of energy for our body.
Once our body gets depleted of glycogen, the liver starts producing organic compounds called ketones. These compounds are formed when our body burns fat for fuel, and that is how the high-in-fat keto diet contributes to effective weight loss.
Besides enabling our liver to convert fat into ketones, leading to a lean figure, the keto diet has many other physical and mental health benefits.
Consider these benefits of the Keto Diet:
1. Reduced appetite. When your body begins breaking down fats, you typically experience significant appetite reduction. Feeling full for more extended periods can be highly beneficial for weight loss.
The keto diet helps in reducing food cravings and urges to binge. Such conditions are the most significant obstacle to successful dieting and can cause the so-called yo-yo effect. In the absence of these obstructions, it’s more likely that you’ll stick to your desired diet regime.
Our brain, heart, and muscle tissue are more inclined towards burning ketones than glycogen. When ketones are burned, we can conserve blood sugar and function more effectively.
2. Decreased levels of triglycerides (fat found in your blood). Production of triglycerides happens when the dietary fat (the fat that we consume through food) and our body fat turns into Free Fatty Acids (FFA). When FFA’s start freely flowing through our body, they get attached to insulin, and this combination forms triglycerides.
- High levels of triglycerides are hazardous for our health as they’re known to cause obesity, heart disease, and seizures.
- Cutting down on carbohydrates, especially refined sugars, decreases insulin stimulation, resulting in lower levels of fat in the blood.
- The keto diet limits many types of carbs, including refined sugar, starch, alcohol, and fruit – all of them known to be insulin stimulators.
3. Increased levels of good cholesterol (HDL cholesterol). According to 12 medical studies performed on 1257 patients, carbohydrate-restricted diets, such as the keto diet, offer improvement of cardiovascular health because they increase the levels of HDL in the body.
- A low carb diet is a more efficient method of increasing the good cholesterol when compared to traditional weight loss diets that are focused on reducing, rather than increasing, the fat intake.
- If you are looking to improve the overall health of your heart, increasing your HDL cholesterol levels is a great starting point.
4. Better blood pressure balance. Because high-fat diets are often considered as unhealthy by the general public, many people are suspicious about going ketogenic. Even though the keto diet might have some side-effects, negatively affected blood pressure is not part of them.
- Lower-fat diets are more often associated with increased prevalence of high blood pressure than the high-fat food regimen. Diets with a higher number of calories coming from quality fatty foods, such as fish, avocado, walnuts, and olive oil, contribute to healthier blood pressure.
5. Supports the treatment of mental health disorders. The keto diet has a lot of applications and benefits for people who have epilepsy, bipolar disorder, seizures, and other mental health conditions. It has been clinically used to treat anxiety and depression.
- For people whose brain health is optimal, the keto diet is proven to contribute to more focus and clarity.
If you are interested in improving your figure, focus, or health condition by going on a keto diet, it’s wise to consult your dietitian or doctor in choosing a safe and supportive plan suitable for you.