As you may know, the Ketogenic and Low carb diet has become extremely popular over the last couple years. Today’s email is going to break down the pros and cons of a low-carb and Ketogenic diet, based on the real unbiased scientific research, practical considerations of real people performing the diet long-term and hundreds of documented testimonies that we have seen or heard about from our clients at Nutrition Solutions.
Firstly, you may be wondering what the Ketogenic diet is. In short, it’s an EXTREMELY low carb diet with a very high fat intake. On this diet, all grains, fruits, and other carb sources are totally eliminated. The majority of the diet is made up of fatty foods, such as meat, fish, eggs, dairy, nuts, seeds, oils, etc and it’s been known to be restrictive in nature.
At first, it may seem totally crazy, especially if you’re still following the belief that fats make you fat!
However, lots of research has shown us that healthy (polyunsaturated fats) fats are not bad or unhealthy; in fact, they have beneficial effects on our heart, overall health, hormones and do not cause obesity as long as consumed in moderation.
The reason the Ketogenic diet has been rumored to work so well as far as getting quick results is it removes carbohydrates totally which will allow the body to flush a quick 5-10 pounds of water weight which carbs tend to hold on to. Also, you’re removing an entire food group and eliminating a lot of high-calorie foods that we tend to binge on late at night or on weekends. (basically, anything processed with sugar).
Now, with all that being said, it also has some downsides, like most things in life…
Firstly and as you may have guessed, it’s VERY restrictive. Meaning you have a limited bank of foods to choose from, making it more difficult to prepare and sustain. In fact, it’s one of the most restrictive diets out there, as you are eliminating an entire food group. If you’ve ever done a low-carb or Ketogenic diet, you will know that carbs are in virtually everything!
Additionally, it’s also not optimal for high-level performance or lean muscle enhancement, as carbohydrates have a key role in ATP energy production, hormone production, nutrient delivery, and recovery.
Of course, if you are 100lb overweight, that probably isn’t the primary concern, hence why some will find success following a Ketogenic plan for a short period of time.
Despite plenty of success stories for people who love the immediate gratification and don’t mind committing to a life of no carbs, it’s not recommended for most, as it’s super hard to sustain Keto eating patterns over the long term.
In addition, the occurrences of individuals who lost a lot of weight following Keto only to gain it all back and then some is far more prevalent than that of any other diet.
That’s the main reason we don’t tend to recommend it to most people, as the best diet is ultimately the one that allows you to enjoy a variety of foods, is easy to follow, requires minimal planning and thinking and is sustainable over the long term!
Unfortunately, for 99% of people out there, that isn’t Keto.
Instead, just like we do here with our meals at Nutrition Solutions, a more sustainable middle ground is reducing the intake of ‘bad’ processed carbs and focusing on carbohydrate sources that are beneficial for our health from natural sources such as quinoa, rice, potatoes, fruits, etc.
That, combined with a good level of healthy fats from steak, ground beef, bison, coconut oil, canola oil, nuts, etc allows you to potentially get the best of both worlds, along with a better balance, more flexibility, and better long-term results, as shown by our thousands of client success stories!
You can see our transformations and learn more about Nutrition Solutions here
Rudy Mawer, MS
Sports Scientist & Nutritionist