Feb 2021
Jacqui Lewis - BHSc Nutritional and Dietetic Medicine

Keto or Not Keto... This Is the Question!

Keto diet

It’s the new Buzz word on everyone’s lips, “I’m going Keto”. So what does this mean, and is it the best thing for you? Is it a flash in the pan or is it here to stay?

Ketogenesis is the process where the body uses Ketone Bodies to produce energy, rather than Glucose (preferred, and made from carbs and in the absence of carbs, made from protein).

So what does keto mean as far as food intake goes?

To get in to Ketogenesis can take quite a few days, and the journey is  not always and easy one!

The diet of a Ketogenic human comprises of no more than 50g carbohydrates per day – not even a cup of rice, not even 2 slices of bread.

The diet of a Ketogenic human comprises of up to 70% fat and only 25% protein

So, its not a simple, “swap our carbs for protein’  because if protein is too high, it will be converted to carbs – and BANG goes your Ketosis. You’ve eaten all that fat and your body will still choose the carbs!!

So its easy to see that perhaps those claiming they are in Keto – may well not be – and the one way to know for sure is to buy yourself some Keto Stick to pee on to make sure you’re not torturing yourself to no avail!!

Is keto good for you?

Is it good? Well – there’s a lot we can say about this – it is good for short term fast weight loss, that’s for sure.

It has been shown to reduce inflammation too, which will help you off load a whole lot of fluid too. And it has been shown to be great for Epileptics, and those with Autism as well…..

Can it be of help to you? You should be asking a different set of questions.

Questions to ask

Do I like eating lots of fat?

Do I have a healthy gall bladder that will help me process all that fat?

Can I afford to load up my already beaten up gall bladder with even more to deal with?

Can I stick to it RELIGIOUSLY?

Here’s the thing – if you’re swimming along eating 70% fat and no carbs, it will all go very well, but if it gets to the weekend and you “just want to relax a little” if you load in a few carbs, guess what happens to all that fat you ate during the week if the carbs will now be the easiest way to keep your brain functioning?  Guess what – STORED AS FAT – real quick!! 

If you can answer a big yes because these things are not of concern to you….
We recommend its used in quick hits of no more than 6 weeks, and is followed to the letter.

Followed up with a healthy eating plan high in fibre, complex carbs and healthy fats.

Do that for 6 weeks then cycling in ketogenesis again will be fine.

Over the longer term its is not great.

Here’s a good article on the risks associated.

After WLS, the fact your are unable to eat a lot of food will mean you will lose weight any way, and your relationship with food and a balanced approach is important for long term success.

Following the latest craze can be another form of yo- yo dieting, as it is not a sustainable way of living the rest of your life

When considering a “diet” like Keto, Paleo, Mediterranean,  Gluten Free, Vegetarian, Vegan, VLCD, HFLC – ask just one question.

Can I do this for the rest of my life?

If the answer is no, then consider it might all fall apart when you stop this way of eating.

What we do suggest is finding a structure around food that is a LIFESTYLE, not a diet.

Diet is a word that can lead to short term commitment followed by a blow out because you feel deprived.

Try a lifestyle where everything is moderate, life is enjoyable, and you can leave the house without having it all fall apart. 

 Download here the keto infographic by bnmulti

Jacqui Lewis
BHSc Nutritional and Dietetic Medicine

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