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Basic Ketogenic Diet

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The Atkins diet is one of the most famous ketogenic diets, but certainly not the only one. Many people think of ketogenic diets as high protein diets but this is not the case. There are many ways of implementing a low carbohydrate, ketogenic diet plans but most involve following a higher fat, moderate protein, low carb food plan. There are differences in how most people view low carb diet plans and a ketogenic diet plan, and these differences centre around the amount of carbohydrate and protein allowed on a daily basis.

An adult needs somewhere around 2,000 to 2,500 calories per day, on an average, to maintain his or her current weight. Depending upon your natural size, muscle mass, activity level, age, and gender, every adult needs different number of calories in a day. There are calorie tables and calculators that will help you estimate your daily calorie need. But keep in mind these are only estimates— you may need a few more or a few less calories than what the calculators show, since you may have differences in your metabolism. Over time, you will know to adjust your overall calorie intake up or down by monitoring your weight.

Improving general wellbeing through a metabolic change in which the primary cellular fuel source switches from carbohydrate based fuels containing glucose, to fat fuels and fat metabolism products called ketones is the main purpose and goal of a ketogenic diet plan. A well-devised metabolic process called ketogenesis is followed to achieve this body state called ketosis. Ketosis is simply a normal metabolic pathway in which instead of relying on sugar or carbohydrate, the body cells utilize ketones to make energy. It is interesting to know that as an adaptation to periods of time when food was unavailable, humans developed an evolutionary ability to burn ketones.

A great deal of research is being done on ketosis as it relates to disease. Ketone bodies elevate blood levels in humans and are effective treatment for many disease conditions, along with having some other very beneficial effects. It also improves mitochondrial health and the function of cellular energy pathways.  Ketogenic diets are now being used to treat medical conditions, success of which is rooted in its cellular effects. Conditions such as diabetes, epilepsy, autism, Alzheimer's, cancer and others are being successfully treated or benefited by Keto diets.

Some common questions you may have about a ketogenic diet plan include:

·        How to start a ketogenic diet plan;

·        Who should not follow a ketogenic diet;

·        List of medical contraindications;

·        Side effects of a ketogenic diet;

·        Benefits of a ketogenic diet; and

·        Dangers of low carb diets.

If you have any concerns about starting a ketogenic diet plan with pre-existing health conditions, you should check with your physician, especially if those conditions involve kidney or heart problems.  People with kidney disease should consult with their physician about starting a ketogenic diet.  I am going to discuss other contraindicated conditions and health issues in a separate article. Make sure you check the list and rule them out before starting the diet.

Before we start, I must tell you that these articles are a result of extensive research that I have done over years and I am not a physician. I do have extensive experience with eating the ketogenic way, and I cured some of my health problems with a ketogenic diet. I am just sharing what I know about ketogenic diets. These articles do not guarantee that this diet will work for you or cure your health problems.

Be aware that most doctors don't understand the general effect of foods on the body and get very little training on nutrition. In general, medical science says that ketosis is dangerous, and so the doctors know even less about ketogenic diets. Hence, if you ask your physician about this diet, you may be told that it is dangerous and should be avoided. It is also important to know the important differences between the ketogenic diet for cancer therapy, and a regular ketogenic diet for other issues.

Please make your own decisions, keeping in mind that the doctor is getting nutritional ketosis confused with a much more dangerous condition called ketoacidosis. These are two different conditions.  Ketoacidosis usually develops when a person with type 1 diabetes develops a serious infection, has a heart attack or other debilitating illness. Ketoacidosis is a concern for Type 1 diabetics and others whose bodies are unable to make or process insulin correctly. It is precipitated by the inability of the sick patient to administer proper amounts of injected insulin dehydration and accompanied by high blood sugars.



I am going to write in detail about requirements of a ketogenic diet. Please share your experiences and I will add them to my future blogs.