Dieting is nothing new and throughout the years, new diets have emerged claiming to be the best way to lose weight. As research emerges the science will show whether a diet is, in fact, healthy and sustainable or if it can be detrimental to your overall health.
Keto is a new diet that’s been gaining in popularity in the last little while and has been praised by some as healthy and effective, however, science may not agree.
What is a Keto Diet?
Keto is a diet that involves eating lots of proteins and natural fats while cutting out carbohydrates. The purpose is to induce the state of ketosis that your body instinctively goes into in order to have your liver break down fats.
And what is ketosis? Essentially the way it works is your body uses blood sugar for energy. When those sugars are low enough, your body is forced to burn fat instead. That fat-burning energy is ketosis.
This is supposed to help you lose weight because, the more fat you burn, the less fat-related weight you have.
But what exactly can or can’t you eat while doing the keto diet?
Foods You Can and Can’t Eat
Some foods you can’t eat on Keto:
- Whole grains (this means no oatmeal or any kind of oats)
- Starch - this includes things like potatoes or pasta
- Sugary foods
- Fruit - yes, Keto diets say to avoid fruits as much as possible. This is because of the natural sugars in a lot of fruits.
Some foods you can eat on Keto:
- Nuts and seeds
- Dairy (especially yogurts)
- Green vegetables
Eating fatty foods sounds great right?
Well, don’t get too excited, because the health science around keto is a little bit more complicated than “ketosis good-blood sugar bad.”
Is the Keto Diet Healthy?
The answer to whether or not Keto is safe is complicated. In moderation, this diet can actually be helpful. High-protein meals are good every so often or if you’re working out often. Sugars and carbohydrates should be avoided but they don’t necessarily be cut out completely. When taken to the extreme, Keto can be dangerous and may even lead to premature death.
For example, a recent study looked at over 400 adults to determine their risk factor for different conditions. After surveying everyone, this is the conclusion they came to.
Both high and low percentages of carbohydrate diets were associated with increased mortality, with minimal risk observed at 50–55% carbohydrate intake. Low carbohydrate dietary patterns favouring animal-derived protein and fat sources, from sources such as lamb, beef, pork, and chicken, were associated with higher mortality, whereas those that favoured plant-derived protein and fat intake, from sources such as vegetables, nuts, peanut butter, and whole-grain breads, were associated with lower mortality, suggesting that the source of food notably modifies the association between carbohydrate intake and mortality.
In other words, what they found out was that carbs are not nearly as bad as some keto experts would have you believe. In addition, if you’re going to eat a higher fat diet, it’d be much healthier to get those fats from plants and nuts instead of animal products.
But just as importantly, the study shows that healthy, whole grains are good for you.
Carbohydrates are an essential part of our diet as humans and overly restricting or cutting them out completely is dangerous. There are healthy carbs, like potatoes or oats, that can actually provide needed nutrients. So if you’re going to try the Keto lifestyle, use moderation and caution.
Should You Diet?
The bottom line of whether or not you should try the Keto diet, or really any other kind of restrictive diet, should be based on your personal health goals and pre-existing conditions. Those with diabetes can benefit from a Keto diet because they are supposed to avoid high sugar foods.
Maybe the reason you’re considering Keto is you want to lose weight. There are other options less extreme than Keto that can help you lose weight.
If you’re considering dieting you should first consult your doctor to make sure you’re not harming your health.
Focus on Eating Healthy
Diets will come and go out of popularity and sometimes it can be an effective way to lose weight. Using caution and moderation are essential when thinking about starting a new diet. If you’re looking to lose weight but don’t want a restrictive diet you can take the moderate idea of Keto which is to eat healthier and natural foods.
Eating healthy means cutting back on the sugars and refined carbs that come from unhealthy sources like butter or overly processed, sugary foods. Try eating more fruits and vegetables and even oatmeal. Whole grains are full of nutrients and fiber that you need in your diet and oats are a good source for that.
All-in-all it’s always going to be more beneficial to create daily habits or routines that center around getting proper rest, nutrition, and exercise to create a healthy, holistic lifestyle than it is to try to cut out an entire macro from your diet to shortcut your way to better health.
Good health is neither obtainable nor sustainable if you’re taking extreme measures to get there.
Oats Can Help You Build Healthy Habits
Oats are a great, healthy source of carbohydrates. And, when prepared the right way, oats can give you a healthy mix of the macronutrients you need without the excessive amount of sugar or calories you don’t need.
You don’t need over sugary breakfast cereals every morning. Instead, you can have delicious, tasty oats instead that help you build a healthier, sustainable diet that’ll make you feel great day after day without the extreme or unsustainable measures other short-term diets require.
Check out Oats Overnight if you’re looking for an easy way to incorporate oatmeal into your life. The variety of flavors guarantee there’s a perfect flavor for you. So eat healthily and keep the foods you love in your diet.