Posted by Nicole on November 4
If you are in search of a healthy long-term diet for weight loss, you might be thinking about trying a ketogenic diet.
While you may have heard a lot of great things about keto, you could be nervous about taking the plunge. It means restricting yourself to around 20-50 grams of carbohydrates per day.
Is making that kind of lifestyle change worth it to lose weight? Let’s go over a few reasons why keto for weight loss is worth considering, even though it may mean making some major adjustments.
1. You can get rid of excess water weight.
Many people like keto for weight loss because it can produce some fast initial results. The reason for this is because it can help you too unload your excess water weight.
Research shows that eating a very low carb diet can lead to improvements with insulin function.
These improvements may lead to better performance from the kidneys. As a result, they handle salt and water levels more effectively, leading to a reduction in excess water weight.
That means if you have been lugging around extra water, you may see a rapid improvement as well as less bloating in the future.
2. Low-carb diets work better than low fat diets for weight loss.
If you instinctually avoid eating foods that are high in fact, it is probably because you were brought up to do so.
But do high fat foods make you fat? Not necessarily.
In fact, here is a study that found that participants eating a low-carb diet fared better than those who were on a low-fat diet.
3. You can burn stubborn visceral fat.
Are you a “pear?” Or are you an “apple?”
A lot of us have a pear shape when we are younger, but as we get older, it converts into an apple shape—meaning we end up packing on more fat around the belly.
This type of fat is called “visceral” fat. It builds up around your liver and other organs.
Mayo Clinic explains why belly fat is a problem that goes beyond aesthetic concerns. The site says, “Although subcutaneous fat poses cosmetic concerns, visceral fat is linked with far more dangerous health problems.”
Among these, the site lists heart disease, type 2 diabetes, abnormal cholesterol, high blood pressure and problems with breathing.
Mayo Clinic also says, “Research also associates belly fat with an increased risk of premature death — regardless of overall weight. In fact, some studies have found that even when women were considered a normal weight based on standard body mass index (BMI) measurements, a large waistline increased the risk of dying of cardiovascular disease.”
If you have unsuccessfully tried to burn away this belly fat in the past, you already know that it can be extremely difficult to get rid of it and to keep it off.
This study found that a diet which was very low in carbohydrates resulted in a “preferential loss of fat in the trunk region.”
That means that eating a ketogenic diet may be a good way to “target” weight loss in this area.
4. You can follow this diet safely over the long term.
A lot of weight loss diets can help you too rapidly burn unwanted pounds. But unfortunately, they are classified as “crash diets.”
Crash diets are not safe to follow for a prolonged period of time. The expectation is that you will be off of them after a week or two.
If you stay on a crash diet for too long, you do not get the nutrition you need to function properly, and your overall health will suffer.
Ketogenic diets are not crash diets, however. They are rich in the nutrition that you need, and you get plenty of energy from healthy fats.
Research suggests that ketogenic diets have many potential health benefits (see the sections below).
So, whereas crash diets detract from your overall health, following a ketogenic diet may contribute to your well-being.
That means that you do not have to worry about packing back on all of that fat after a couple of weeks. Instead, you can keep eating your ketogenic diet over the years to come, maintaining a healthy weight for the long term.
Now you know keto is a good long-term option from a physical standpoint. But does a keto diet work over the long term from a psychological standpoint?
Even though restricting your carbohydrates can be a challenge, the upside is that you may not need to count calories.
Why? Because this type of diet can promote satiety.
That means that you don’t feel like you are “starving” on a keto diet. In fact, there is a good chance that you’ll quit eating when you have had a healthy serving size because you will feel full. That is why counting calories is often unnecessary. This too can make keto an appealing choice for the long haul.
5. You can look forward to cardiovascular benefits.
Did you know that there are many studies showing an array of cardiovascular benefits in connection with eating a keto diet?
Eating a low-carb diet may be able to help you to improve your levels of cholesterol and triglycerides as well as blood glucose and blood pressure.
That means that you are reducing markers of heart disease and stroke.
If your reasons for wanting to lose weight in part involve preventing cardiovascular disease, it makes sense to choose a diet like keto that may have a protective effect on your cardiovascular health.
6. Keto may have other health benefits too.
Researchers are finding evidence that a keto diet may have further health benefits as well. For example, it may have a neuroprotective effect.
Keto is a Long-Term, Healthy Weight Loss Solution
You have now had a chance to explore 6 great reasons to consider a keto diet for weight loss.
This type of diet can help you lose weight rapidly and keep it off over the long term. Unlike crash diets, it is a good choice for your overall health.
Be aware that switching to keto can involve an adjustment phase that produces symptoms reminiscent of the flu.
This phase is transient, and you can minimize it by drinking lots of water and getting plenty of electrolytes. An electrolyte supplement can help.
Once low-carb flu passes, many keto dieters find themselves feeling better than they have in a long time.
And it sure can be exciting watching your waistline shrink. So, think about giving it a try. It is a big transition, but it can be well worth it.