The human body typically burns sugar for energy, which it obtains from carbohydrates. However, when we do not eat much in the way of carbohydrates, our bodies are forced to burn fat instead, making ketones to burn for fuel. This process is known as ketosis. A ketogenic, or keto, diet, then, is one that is high in fat and protein rather than carbohydrates, which helps put the body into ketosis.
A keto diet is the best way to lose weight because it is a natural process that enables the body to burn fat more easily. It also may even enable weight loss more than other diets since it is more difficult for the body to convert fat to energy rather than sugar. Because this diet emphasizes fats and protein, people report not only weight loss but also less hunger, making it easier to consume healthy portions and avoid overeating. A keto diet is also associated with several health benefits. Many people use it to control diabetes and epilepsy symptoms, and it has also been shown to lower blood pressure, cholesterol, and triglyceride levels. This diet may also be helpful to people with cancer, acne, Parkinson's, and other conditions, but more research is needed in these areas. A keto diet is the best option for those looking to lose weight or control existing health conditions.
Though eating keto can help you lose weight relatively easily, research shows that this diet should only be used short-term for several reasons. The weight-loss benefits of a keto diet seem to level out over the course of a year in comparison to other diets, like a low-fat, high-carb regimen. Also, there is no evidence to suggest any long-term benefits from this diet, as studies on the effects of a keto diet have not extended for longer than two years. Additionally, a keto diet can lead to several potentially serious health concerns. For one, putting the body into ketosis can have some uncomfortable flu-like side effects, such as headaches, dizziness, and nausea, which is why some call it the "keto flu." A keto diet can also cause stressed kidneys, digestive issues, nutrient deficiencies, low blood sugar, and even bone decay. In short, a keto diet can be very risky, and it is not the long-term healthy eating solution that it is sometimes marketed as.