Ketone diet: indications, results and reviews

The ketone diet is a low-carb, moderate-protein, high-fat menu. Clinical studies show that the keto diet gives results that have not been achieved without the help of drugs for diabetes, epilepsy, cancer and Alzheimer's disease.

The Keto Diet: Learn More About Nutrition and Ketosis

The goal of a ketogenic diet is to force the body to use fat as its main source of energy. As a rule, this process takes place in different ways: the carbohydrates that come with food are processed into glucose - the basis for the functioning and nutrition of the brain and cellular structures of other organs. If you limit the amount of carbohydrates, then the liver converts fat into ketone bodies.

Keto diet

Experts recommend following a ketogenic diet for the following conditions:

  • diabetes, epilepsy and autism;
  • Alzheimer's disease and brain tumor;
  • stroke, depression, Parkinson's and Charcot's disease;
  • schizophrenia, head trauma and hyperactivity;
  • obesity, irritable bowel syndrome and tremors;
  • cardiovascular pathologies and respiratory failure.

To understand how the keto diet works on the body, you need to understand the process of ketosis. For full functioning a person needs a sufficient amount of energy in the form of ATP (a universal source that is mandatory for biochemical processes). On average, you need about 1800 kcal per day. About 400 kcal is consumed by the brain - that's 100 g of glucose. What happens to the body if carbohydrates are almost completely excluded from the diet?

Ketosis is a process that uses fat as the main source of energy, while keeping carbohydrates to a minimum. Without additional effort, as a natural process, similar changes in the body are observed in infancy and in women during pregnancy.

In ketosis, insulin levels decrease and large amounts of fatty acids leave adipose tissue. The oxidation process takes place in the liver, where ketones (organic substances) are produced - energy sources for the body. They cross the blood-brain barrier and nourish the brain cells.

Looking at biochemical processes in more detail, you need to pay special attention to the process of "fat burning". In this case, the fatty acid molecules are converted to acetyl-CoA. This element combines with oxaloacetate and gives rise to the Krebs cycle, which occurs in the mitochondria of cells. As a result of this process, substances important for vital activity are formed.

Reducing sugar and insulin has a positive effect on the health of internal organs and systems. Ketosis is a safer process than glucose metabolism, because in this case no free radicals are formed, which is necessary in old age. Ketones are produced automatically in the body when the diet involves the use of less than 30 grams of carbohydrates per day and 0, 8-1, 5 grams of protein per 1 kg of body weight. At the same time, high-quality saturated fats are needed in sufficient quantities (butter, egg yolk, lard and lard, etc. ).

The benefits of ketones for our body are as follows:

  • Internal organs and tissues (heart, brain, kidneys) work much more efficiently.
  • A healthy heart is surrounded by thick adipose tissue, without which it does not beat well.
  • The brain works 25% more efficiently than blood glucose.

Ketones are the ideal fuel for cellular structures, non-destructive and non-inflammatory. They do not glycate, ie do not contribute to cellular aging and do not shorten the life expectancy of a person. Healthy ketosis starves cancer cells and increases mitochondrial function to generate more energy in a reliable and sustainable way.

The difference between a ketogenic diet and a low-carb diet

Only regular carbohydrate deficiency allows you to achieve ketosis. This process becomes constant and is characterized by a marked increase in the level of ketone bodies in the blood. In a low-carbohydrate diet, such processes are not observed, because the amount of carbohydrates and fats that enter the body daily with food is sufficient for energy needs.

If we are talking about a keto diet, then this food system is designed in such a way that ketones are synthesized in the liver in large quantities and used as fuel. In ketosis caused by dietary correction, the indicators reach a level of 0, 5 to 3, 0 mM / L. To determine the amount of ketones, you can use special test strips, which are sold in pharmacies. This is not possible with a low carb diet.

The ketogenic diet affects the body on several levels simultaneously. Mitochondria were originally created to be used as an energy source of dietary fats. At the same time, the load of cells with toxins decreases and the amount of free radicals (waste) decreases. Mitochondrial health is the main key to optimal health. A ketogenic diet is the best way to maintain the right balance.

Indications for ketogenic diet:

  • Diabetes - to reduce insulin levels, increase mitochondriogenesis and increase insulin sensitivity.
  • Risks of developing cardiovascular disease (cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood) - to increase the amount of LDL and lower insulin levels.
  • Overweight - to reduce appetite, reduce lipogenesis and reduce energy consumption for the heat effect of proteins.
  • Epilepsy - suppression of neuronal excitability and anticonvulsant action of ketones.

It is not scientifically proven, but most experts claim that the keto diet helps treat acne and neurological conditions. Ketosis is effective against polycystic ovaries and cancer.

What is the "adaptation phase"?

Many reviews of the ketogenic diet show that some time after the change in diet, consciousness becomes blurred, health deteriorates and energy is lost. It is an adaptation that continues in the first weeks of the diet. This is due to the fact that the necessary enzymes for a full life are not enough, therefore the oxidation processes are slower.

During the "adaptation phase", the body reorganizes to use other energy resources. The internal organs begin to absorb ketone bodies instead of carbohydrates, breaking down fats from food. The condition of the body normalizes only after 4-6 weeks.

Research results

Results of clinical trials on the efficacy and safety of the ketogenic diet:

  1. Improving body composition. Every day, the keto diet consumes 10, 000 calories less than usual. At the same time, every day the body weight decreases against the background of a decrease in body fat.
  2. Reduced performance under high intensity loads. During the first 30 days after a dietary change, the ability to exercise with high intensity decreases. This is due to the fact that there is a decrease in intramuscular and hepatic glycogen.
  3. Decreased intramuscular reserves. It is characterized by a decrease in glucose from food. It is accompanied by a decrease in the body's rate of recovery and the ability to build muscle mass.

The conclusion is obvious - the ketogenic diet is optimal and effective for healing the body, but can not be used to build muscle. Ketosis is an indispensable process that can help you lose weight with health benefits.

The keto diet is widely used by athletes who do cycling sports that require endurance (cycling, triathlon, marathon, etc. ). This is due to the fact that in the body during ketosis there is an efficient burning of fat for energy production, which allows you to save available glycogen stores during excessive respiratory stress.


If the diet is formulated correctly, the result of the ketone diet will come in 2-3 weeks. After 1-2 years the condition improves in 90% of cases. If you make mistakes, then the positive effect may never come.

Food, diet, what should be on the menu

Allowed oils and fats

Foods containing these elements are a major part of the keto diet.

Eat the right fats, exclude the unhealthy ones:

monounsaturated (macadamia, avocado, olive oil, egg yolk);
  • polyunsaturated (fatty fish and animal proteins).
  • It is not acceptable to include trans fats in the diet - processed foods that have undergone a hydrogenation process to increase the shelf life, such as margarine.

    The balance of omega-3 (shellfish, trout, tuna, krill and salmon) and omega-6 (walnut, almond, pine nuts, corn and sunflower oil) is important. It is recommended to consume fatty meats and fish in small quantities.

    Food should be fried in beef fat, coconut or ghee. This approach to cooking allows for more essential fatty acids.

    Protein in the keto diet

    The higher the concentration of a substance in the product, the less should be consumed. It is better to give preference to the meat of grass animals and feeding on pastures. This will eliminate the possibility of consuming steroids and harmful bacteria. Dark meats (birds) are preferred.

    Keep in mind that too much protein can reduce ketone synthesis and increase glucose production. The diet should contain no more than 35% protein food, which should be balanced with sauces and rich side dishes. For example, lean beef should be eaten with fatty cheese. Pork can replace lamb without disturbing ketosis.

    Useful fish include cod, trout, tuna, catfish and mackerel. It is mandatory to add crustaceans (crabs, lobsters, oysters, squid or mussels) to the food. Chicken eggs are an important supplier of protein. It is best to buy the product from free-range chickens. Useful poultry - duck, chicken, pheasant; offal - tongue, liver and heart.

    Fruits and vegetables for ketosis

    Avoid plant foods that contain large amounts of glucose. The best vegetables are those with high nutrient content and low carbohydrate content (leafy and green). Accentuate asparagus, peppers, broccoli, spinach, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts.

    Vegetables that grow underground should be limited as they store carbohydrates. Recommended for frying, such as onions and carrots. Small amounts of citrus fruits, berries (blueberries, blackberries and raspberries), nightingales (aubergines and tomatoes) and root vegetables (mushrooms, garlic, parsnips) can be used.

    Dairy products for the keto diet

    Whole milk can be drunk only with the main meal. In this case, moderation is important. Organic raw dairy products should be preferred. If you are lactose intolerant, stick to hard cheeses.

    Healthy foods recommended for the ketogenic diet include:

    • Whipped cream and Greek yogurt
    • homemade mayonnaise and soft cheese (brie, mozzarella);
    • parmesan cheese, cheddar, porter;
    • sour cream, cottage cheese, cream nuts, mascarpone.

    Dairy products are widely used in sauces and greasy garnishes. For a keto diet to lose weight it is recommended to limit these foods.

    Drinks and water for ketone production

    The ketogenic diet aims to create a natural diuretic effect. This is why most people are dehydrated. To eliminate the possibility of negative effects on the body, it is recommended to drink at least 4 liters of water a day.

    Keep in mind that caffeine causes fluid loss in the body, so energizing drinks (tea and coffee) should be reduced to 2 cups a day. To eliminate the possibility of developing keto flu, which is characteristic of improper maintenance of the keto diet, you need to learn how to compensate for the lack of electrolytes. To do this, you need to drink bone broth, which can be replaced with sports drinks with stevia or sucralose.