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5 Great Benefits of Ketosis and the Keto Diet

The ketogenic diet (or ‘keto diet’) was first used in the 1920s as a therapy for epilepsy, but it has gained popularity as a weight-loss diet in recent years.  The keto diet is a very low-carb, high-fat diet that induces a metabolic state called ketosis.  When your body enters ketosis, it uses fat instead of carbohydrates for energy.  This could be fat from your diet or stored fat in your body, like that unwanted belly fat you’ve been trying to get rid of.  [This article, “5 Great Benefits of Ketosis and the Keto Diet” was originally published in HealthXWire]

The average keto diet is made up of 70% fat, 20% protein, and 10% carbs.  This translates to a carb consumption of about 20-50 g per day (an apple contains 25 g).  People hoping to lose weight and enjoy the health benefits of ketosis and the keto diet can enjoy healthy servings of foods like fatty fish, eggs, butter, cream, unprocessed cheese, healthy oils, low-carb vegetables, steak, and even bacon. 

While there are no restrictions on calories, the success of the keto diet depends on the dieter’s ability to maintain ketosis.  While many people have enjoyed weight-loss success on the keto diet, this plan has many other benefits.  Keep reading to discover how ketosis and the keto diet can benefit you.        

The keto diet reduces your appetite

When you enter a state of ketosis, you may notice symptoms such as increased thirst, frequent urination, and reduced appetite.  To understand how ketosis and the keto diet reduce your appetite, first, you must understand how your body responds to a standard high-carbohydrate meal.  When you eat a meal high in carbs, those carbs are converted to glucose, which enters your bloodstream.  Your body then releases insulin, which stimulates the transport of blood glucose into cells for energy.  The excess glucose is stored as glycogen or fat.  You feel hungry 2-3 hours after a high-carb meal because the release of insulin has lowered the amount of glucose in your blood, stimulating your appetite. 

Many people in ketosis find that they lose weight naturally without having to count calories because they simply have less desire to eat.  When you are in a state of ketosis, you use ketone bodies for energy instead of glucose.  Ketone bodies are either produced by the liver from stored fat, or from the fat in your diet.  With ketosis and the keto diet, you only experience hunger if your body can’t access your stored fat for fuel or if there isn’t enough fat available for energy.  

Furthermore, research has shown that ketosis suppresses hunger hormones like ghrelin.  This is in stark contrast to the effects of low-calorie, high-carbohydrate diets, which cause the body to release more hunger hormones as it tries to attain homeostasis.  After weight loss from a low-calorie diet, hunger hormones may remain elevated for as much as one year.   

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The keto diet improves insulin sensitivity and stabilizes blood sugar

When you eat carbohydrates, and they are converted to glucose in your body, you experience a blood sugar spike.  Likewise, when you eat a high-carbohydrate diet, you experience blood sugar spikes and elevation in your insulin levels throughout the course of the day.  Over time, your cells may lose much of their capacity to respond to insulin, leading to a condition called insulin resistance

Insulin resistance increases inflammation and triglycerides, and it also promotes fat storage.  Because the keto diet restricts dietary carbohydrates, it also minimizes blood sugar spikes and the accompanying release of insulin.  Ketosis and the keto diet have been shown to lower insulin levels, which may improve insulin sensitivity over time.  One study showed an insulin sensitivity increase of 75% after two weeks on the keto diet.  Ketosis and the keto diet may also stabilize blood sugar levels, with low variability in blood glucose over time.  The result is fewer food cravings and less fat storage.

The keto diet burns fat for energy (and helps you lose weight)

When ketosis and the keto diet change how your body fuels itself, you become a fat-burning machine.  When you begin the keto diet, gluconeogenesis occurs, meaning that your body converts proteins and fat into glucose for energy.  This process burns more calories than simple glucose metabolism from carbs, and it leads to ketogenesis, or ketosis.  You enter ketosis when your body no longer has enough glucose available for energy.  Your body then produces ketone bodies from fatty acids as your primary energy source.  While your body stores excess glucose as fat, excess ketones are excreted from the body, mostly through urine. 

One study showed that people following the keto diet lost five times as much body fat as others who followed a low-fat diet for eight weeks.  When you burn fat for energy instead of glucose, you lose weight without having to count calories.  In addition, you don’t experience the metabolic slowdown that always accompanies low-calorie diets and inevitably leads you to regain lost weight.         

The keto diet reduces inflammation

Chronic inflammation contributes to the development of various diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, dementia, and certain cancers.  Lifestyle factors largely determine who will develop chronic inflammation, and diet takes center stage.  Eating a diet rich in colorful fruits and vegetables and avoiding processed meats and unhealthy fats can significantly reduce inflammation.  

While you lose weight, ketosis and the keto diet may also lower your risk of chronic inflammation.  Eating a high-carbohydrate diet increases inflammation, as glucose metabolism has been found to produce inflammation-causing free radicals.  In contrast, ketone metabolism produces much lower levels of free radicals, so when you use ketones instead of glucose for energy, you experience lower inflammation levels.  Scientists have even found that reduced glucose metabolism can activate a protein called CtBP that suppresses the action of inflammatory genes.  

The keto diet may lower the risk of diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia

The early stages of Alzheimer’s disease are characterized by a hypometabolic state in neurons responsible for learning and memory.  This means that the capacity of these neurons to use glucose for energy is diminished.  Brain hypometabolism may be a consequence of mitochondria becoming less efficient as we age, or it may present in people who carry a gene that puts them at high risk for Alzheimer’s disease.  Insulin resistance is another potential cause of brain hypometabolism.  When insulin resistance is present, glucose cannot move as easily into cells, and cells are starved for energy.

The keto diet can fuel your brain more efficiently with ketones, and it may also lower your risk of dementia as it improves insulin sensitivity.  Studies have shown that adults with mild cognitive impairment improved when supplemented with medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil, elevating ketone levels in the blood.  Not only are ketones a more efficient source of fuel for the brain, but they also protect the brain by reducing free radicals and inflammation. 

People who follow a low-carb diet or drink ketone supplements may experience higher brain functioning and stabilized brain networks.  With ketosis and the keto diet, you may experience a boost in mental sharpness along with weight loss.        

Try a keto supplement

When you embark on your ketosis and keto diet journey, you will find many supplement options online and in stores.  Rapid Fire is a rising New Jersey-based company that offers several enticing keto products on their website and at major retailers.  For example, Rapid Fire coffee pods contain organic ground coffee crafted with coconut oil, MCTs, and grass-fed butter to fit your keto needs.  You can also find a selection of keto creamers and snacks under the Rapid Fire brand. Rapid Fire brand is distributed by Windmill Health Products, a well-established New Jersey-based company.    

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How you can achieve results with ketosis and the keto diet

While on the keto diet, you will enjoy rapid weight loss without counting calories or suffering from hunger pangs.  Even more, your blood sugar will stabilize, and you might even experience a boost in brain functioning.  Along the way, you can enjoy the many keto supplements on the market, like those offered by Rapid Fire.  

It’s recommended that you not remain on the keto diet permanently, as long-term ketosis can lead to muscle aches, nausea, and fatigue.  Instead, you might want to take an occasional ‘ketosis holiday’ with a serving of unprocessed grains to give your body a break.  If you have reached your weight-loss goal and want to transition out of ketosis and the keto diet, then you can gradually increase your intake of lean proteins and healthy carbs like fruits and starchy vegetables while lowering your fat intake.  At the end of your ketosis and keto diet journey, you may feel like a slimmer, more energetic, healthier version of yourself.

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Further Reading

Paleo Foundation: Top 10 Keto Diet Benefits

Northwestern Medicine: Pros and Cons of the Ketogenic Diet   

Harvard Health: Ketogenic diet: Is the ultimate low-carb diet good for you?


Important Note: The information contained in this article is for general informational purposes only, and should not be construed as health or medical advice, nor is it intended to diagnose, prevent, treat, or cure any disease or health condition. Before embarking on any diet or program of nutritional supplementation, it is advisable to consult your healthcare professional in order to determine its safety and probable efficacy in terms of your individual state of health. 


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