Is the keto diet healthy? A ketogenic diet is defined as a high fat, low carbohydrate, adequate protein diet that is used to treat hard-to-control epilepsy in children. This diet forces the body to burn fats rather than carbohydrates. The kinds of foods that are provided to these children under close observation in a hospital setting include butter, heavy whipping cream, mayonnaise, olive and canola oil, most likely to be commercial grade or genetically modified. The diet must be highly monitored for results to be somewhat efficacious. Does that mean the keto diet is healthy? Let’s first dive a little deeper into the keto diet.
Of the children monitored on this type of diet, most remained on their anti-seizure medication and some were able to lessen the doses of their seizure meds. Some improvement in seizure disorder was noted among the patients participating in the study, however I did not find any discussion on any side effects or long term effects of this diet for the patients treated.
Is the Keto Diet Safe Long Term?
Seizures occur when the electrical activity in your brain is disrupted, thereby disrupting brain cells from effectively sending messages to each other. The high fat diet increases the plasma levels of medium chain fatty acids shown to be beneficial in regulating brain function. This diet may be safe when done properly but, oftentimes many individuals end up over-consuming caloric dense animal fats which can but a strain on some organs within the body.
Is the Keto Diet Good for Weight Loss?
For the rest of us, I am not convinced that it (Keto) is the best option. Some people use the “keto-diet” to lose weight, as it shifts the body to a fat-burning metabolic state, known as ketosis. This is a metabolic state in which the body relies on ketones for energy as the result of glucose depletion. However, the standard keto diet consists of a good deal of animal protein and animal fat which may tax the heart, liver and blood circulation.
A keto diet may well be a justification for eating animal and high fat foods as a transition to eating a more healthy, plant based diet that is balanced with carbs, fats and protein. Why not just burn carbs like we are designed to as our fuel? Why overtax the system with protein and fat to attempt to find a better way?
The ideal state of the body and health is finding homeostasis, or balance. Whenever we manipulate this balance with extremes, there is going to be an effect that we weren’t planning on. A diet rich in foods from the earth, filled with nutrients, phytochemical, enzymes, vitamins and minerals is easier on the digestive system, improves gut microbiome, supports healthy elimination, is good for the skin, brain and physique and it is sustainable.
Is the Keto Diet Healthy? Is the Keto Diet Safe?
Staying on a keto-diet long term may increase risk of heart disease, atherosclerotic plaque and cancer. Please check with your naturopathic doctor to find out which diet is most suitable for you.