There has been a lot of skepticism surrounding the Ketogenic diet lately. So I have written this article to debunk 5 myths when it comes to the Ketogenic Diet. “However, because of the booming growth, everyone is jumping on the keto bandwagon and screaming their own opinion. The bad part of trend jumping, especially in the beginning, is that there is a massive imbalance between people who write about opinions versus people who write about facts.” (Dr. Anthony Gustin)
So in order for you to make a proper decision for yourself I have written this to help with destroying the myths and giving you FACTS about Keto. Keep reading to see why the Keto Diet (lifestyle) is the best out there.
1. Ketogenic Diets Are Dangerous
When it comes to the Keto diet, you could eat a variety of non nutriotuos foods in order to reach nutritional ketosis. Just like you can eat pizza and be a vegetarian.
Technically all the Keto diet requires is:
Limiting your protein
Increasing your fat intake.
This can happen by eating constant tons of mayo, Keto ice cream and many other high fat “unhealthy” foods. But this isn’t the only or even the best way of doing Keto.
I recommend choosing foods like:
Grass Fed/Lean Meats
Healthy Fats (coconut oil, ghee, grass fed butter, olive oil, etc.)
Low Carb Veggies (spinach, kale, cauliflower, etc)
When eating whole foods like this you develop a diet that is packed full of nutrients and is very healthy for you.
Also, it is important to note that weight loss can temporarily elevate your cholesterol. An accurate cholesterol reading won’t happen until 6 months after weight has stabilized.
2. A Ketogenic Diet Can Develop Into Ketoacidosis
If you are not a Type 1 Diabetic (or late stage 2) Ketoacidosis is not something you have to worry about.
What is Ketoacidosis? It is another condition that is often cited as a risk of a ketogenic diet. Ketoacidosis is a state where ketone levels get so high (15 mmol or higher) that the body becomes very acidic. It is a life-threatening condition that is very real and very dangerous. But understanding how it occurs shows that it’s not really a concern for most people eating a well-formulated ketogenic diet. In reality, you cant get into ketoacidosis if your body is producing insulin normally.
So why is ketosis different from ketoacidosis? For nutritional ketosis your blood ketone levels are usually between 0.5mmol to 6mmol. Your body naturally doesn’t allow your blood glucose to go above 6mmol due to whats called a nutritional loop. If your blood levels go above 6mmol your body secretes the hormone insulin to bring these levels back down. So, as long as your body produces insulin normally, there’s no need to be afraid you’ll get ketoacidosis! If you want to read more about this and what ketoacidosis is and whether you should be testing for it, then check out this detailed article here.
3. Keto Diets Negatively Affect Our Hormones
The biggest current negative myth in regards to a ketogenic diet is that a state of ketosis will destroy women’s hormones.
According to Dr. Anthony Gustin some critics claim that ketogenic diets lead to “lower-thyroid function.” While many studies have shown that the thyroid hormone T3 can be lowered with a ketogenic diet, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The fact that T3 is lower in ketogenic dieters is probably part of the mechanism that protects lean mass when fat is being lost. In addition, low T3 may possibly even be an indicator of a life-extending effect.
** In the small percentage of cases where symptoms that happen because of the changes in thyroid hormones don’t go away after full keto adaptation, the simple addition of selenium (two or three Brazil nuts a day) and iodine (from a food such as kelp) can alleviate most symptoms.
4. You Can Eat Any Kind Of Fat On A Ketogenic Diet
We kind of hit this point with the first myth but another overlooked aspect of the ketogenic diet is the importance of the content of the fat. While you could come up with a diet that includes 70-80 percent of fat coming from trans fat, no one would agree that it’s a healthy diet. There are studies done that have a large portion of the fat in their ketogenic groups coming from Omega-6 oils such as vegetable oil or soybean oil. But these are the fats we need to limit in our diets to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress. A well-formulated ketogenic diet will not have a high percentage of fats coming from Omega-6 oils. Instead, the majority of fats will be from saturated fats such as coconut oil, grass fed butter, ghee and MCT oil.
Developing a well formulated Keto Diet is very important. If you feel you don’t now how to do this please seek help from a professional.
5. Keto Diets Should Only Be Done For A Short Period Of Time
Another misconception about ketogenic diets is that they are a short-term fix for weight loss but shouldn’t be done for longer periods of time. Most of this relates to the perceived health risks of ketogenic diets.
One thing that bothers me most is that everyone calls it a diet but its so much more than a tool for weight loss - but rather its a way of life. This lifestyle is just that, a lifestyle. It leads to both short-term health benefits (reversing metabolic syndrome, reversing autoimmune issues or losing weight) and long-term health benefits (staving off Alzheimers, cancer, diabetes or coronary artery disease). There is absolutely no reason a well-formulated ketogenic diet cannot be followed for life.