KETO AND ITS BENEFITS
Patrick Healey, N.D.
Metabolism refers to how efficiently and effectively the body creates energy using carbs, fats, protein, and nutrients to fuel the body’s cellular functions.
The majority of the population are in a less than optimal state of health known as “metabolic inflexibility.” Metabolic inflexibility and dysfunction means that individuals are dependent on burning sugar and carbohydrates (cookies, candy, pasta, breads, pastries, etc.) for their cell’s fuel source, but are not able to switch over to burning fats for fuel as easily or readily. This creates a lot of problems for our body’s cellular functions which leads to chronic illnesses such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, neurological disease, mental illness, fatty liver, and cancer just to name a few! This is due to the standard diet of high carbs and sugar along with processed, nutrient-poor, food.
The ketogenic diet is a way of eating that has been around for a long time, but recently has gained a lot of popularity, particularly among those wanting to lose weight. While this can be one benefit of the diet, it was never the intention of the ketogenic diet. It was originally established in the 1920s as a treatment for epilepsy and seizures in children. Since that time, more and more has been discovered on its benefits and the health conditions it helps correct.
The ketogenic diet is designed to get an individual into burning fats for fuel instead of glucose and in doing so, assist them in becoming metabolically healthy.
HERE IS THE BASIC IDEA... CONSUME:
This is a very simple generalization and care must be taken to individualization and quality of food. I recommend avoiding what is called “Internet Keto or Dirty Keto.” This is where you are eating high-calorie foods and fats/oils that are of poor quality such as vegetable oils (soybean, corn, canola, etc.) which are inflammatory, you are also not paying attention to getting your micronutrients and minerals, and you are hardly taking in any fiber. This type of keto can actually make your health worse and may even cause you to gain weight.
BENEFITS OF KETO
- Supports a decrease in inflammation – a major cause of many diseases!
- Supports weight loss
- Supports blood sugar control and balance
- Supports a decrease in blood pressure
- Enhances brain health and cognition
- Assists in balancing out energy and metabolic dips in the day
- Support those with cancer
- and much more!
Eating a high-quality ketogenic diet causes your body to produce biochemical compounds known as ketones, which are used by the body as a more efficient energy and fuel source than glucose. We can enhance our bodies production of ketones and support ketogenesis by consuming special fats known as Medium-Chain Triglycerides (MCT). These MCT, or medium-chain fatty acids as they are also called, are typically derived from coconut oil and can also have beneficial effects, even if you are not on a ketogenic diet. MCT oil has been shown in research to increase the capacity and function of mitochondria (your energy powerhouses inside all your cells) without increasing oxidative stress (damaging effects) to the body. It has also shown to support an increase of fat loss, support insulin sensitivity, glucose control, support brain health and memory. Even if you are not fully ready to start a ketogenic diet, you can still gain benefits by reducing sugar and carb consumption and slowly adding MCT oil into your diet
*NOTE: MCT oil can cause digestive disturbances, most notable loose stools when first starting it. It is recommended to start at a low dose such as 1/2-1 teaspoon at a time before slowly increasing to consuming up to 1-3 tablespoons a day. Your body needs to get used to processing it.
Research continues to uncover the many health benefits of a ketogenic diet as we try to understand its effects on the human body. Since the keto diet is a foundational way of addressing metabolic dysfunction, and since metabolism is at the heart of basically ALL illness and disease, its benefits are vast and far reaching!
Maybe it’s time you give the ketogenic diet a try, or at the very least start eating a lower carb and sugar diet inclusive of eating whole, real foods. For more information, products, and details related to the ketogenic diet check out the links below. Additionally, if you would like a more tailored health program that is specific for you, our clinic can assess your whole terrain and see if the ketogenic diet is right for you. Click here to schedule a consultation with our naturopathic doctors! Isn’t it time you take your health and wellness to the next level?
SIMPLE STARTING POINTS
- Schedule a Diet Consult with Dr. Patrick or Dr. Laura (Established patients only) – If you are a patient and have dietary questions specific to you, keep us in mind! One of our providers can dedicate a full 30 minutes to help you understand any specific dietary/nutrition needs, struggles, questions, and we can even help you with recipes/shopping lists.You can also save up your rewards points from our online apothecary to get this consult for FREE! Book an appointment!
- The Ketogenic Kitchen – learn how to prepare meals the ketogenic way!
- KetoMojo Test Kit *30% OFF FOR A LIMITED TIME!* – testing the blood for ketones and glucose(blood sugar) with a finger prick is the most accurate and only way to know if you are in ketosis
- MCT Oil – support your energy and ketone production
- Olive Oil – shop our healthy, high quality oil for increasing healthy fats in your diet
- Perfect Amino Bars – on the go keto snack bars
- Fast Bars – on the go keto snack bars