The dietary carbohydrates also referred to as carbs are responsible for the generation of energy in your body. The human body uses carbs to produce energy. However, experts say that carbs are not the main source of energy. The body can produce energy from dietary fat and protein.
The carb intake is extremely low when you follow a ketogenic diet, which is a complete contrast to the current western diet. People who follow today’s modern western diet get their dietary calories from the carbs they consume. When you consume carbohydrates, your body releases insul
and that in turn hinders the production of ketones in the liver thereby making it impossible for the body to get into ketosis. It is therefore important to monitor and control your carb intake when you are on a keto diet. A standard keto diet will recommend you to reduce your carb intake to 5 percent or lower.
A properly planned and well-devised ketogenic diet will have fiber intake as the crucial component along with fats. Fiber is significant to maintain your gut health and to keep you satiated as it increases the food bulk. Including cruciferous vegetables and leafy greens that are rich in fiber is crucial when it
omes to a proper ketogenic diet. Your net carb intake will be the total carbs minus the total fiber and it is this metric that will help you review your carb intake. You need to understand that an increase in fiber intake does not affect your blood ketone levels as well as the blood glucose. Fibers are digestion resistant and can give you a satiated feeling thereby reducing your hunger.
Proteins Proteins are large molecular components that are composed of long and small chains of amino acids. What are the functions of dietary protein? They are responsible for, – Glucose conversion through gluconeogenesis – Charging up the intermediates in various metabolic pathways such as the Krebs Cycle – To build the functional and structural components of the cells Although the body can use protein as an energy source, that is not its primary function. It is therefore important to have an adequate balance of protein in your body to maintain the muscle mass while following the keto diet. You need to ensure the calories from protein intake do not exceed 2o to 25 percent or else the gluconeogenesis process from the protein can hinder the production of ketones. When you start with the ketogenic diet, let your protein intake be somewhere between 0.8 to 1.2 g per kilogram of your body weight.
This can help you balance your protein needs against the possibility of excess gluconeogenesis. Fats Fat was always on the wrong side of the spotlight. Many people mistook it to be the reason for increased weight and cardiac issues. Fat is the only macronutrient that has triglyceride molecules. The main functionality of fat as a nutrition in your food is to provide you with additional energy levels and compose the key structural and functional parts of your system. Fat is often confused with nutrient fat. The fat in your cells and the different types of fat molecules available are not the same. The different fat molecule types are, – Adipocytes (Individual cells that store the lipids or fats) – Adipose tissue (the tissue that stores the energy as lipid droplets or fats inside the adipocytes (the fat cells). This is the body fat) – Fatty acids (Molecules that are composed of carbon atom chains bonded together, with carboxylic acid at one end) – Lipids (a generic term used for polar and insoluble biological fat molecules. You have various lipid class molecules that include the phospholipids, mono-, di- and triglycerols, and the cholesterols) – Triglycerides (it is a lipid molecule made up of glycerol and combined with three other fatty acid molecules. Glycerol acts as a backbone for the triglycerides) The ketogenic diet includes several lipid sources. These lipids, once digested, travel through the bloodstream as fatty acids and triglycerides. The body either uses lipids to produce energy or stores them in the adipose tissue.
Dietary fat is the fat you consume while stored body fat is the fat (calories) that the body stores as a reserve. The most important energy in a ketogenic diet is the triglycerides where they account for more than 70 percent of the dietary calories. Fatty acids can be saturated or unsaturated – a saturated fatty acid will not have any double bonds between the carbons while an unsaturated fatty acid will have one or more double bonds between the carbons. Saturated fats such as coconut oil, butter, etc. are stable and can be in their solid state at room temperature. During the earlier days, dietary unsaturated fats led to the development of high blood pressure and heart disease, so the intake of such fats was either prohibited or limited. Unsaturated fatty acids can be divided as follows: – Monounsaturated fats (it has only one double bond between the carbons) – Polyunsaturated fats (it has multiple double bonds between the carbons) The behavior of the fatty acid is determined based on the number of double bonds it holds. These fatty acids are mostly in a liquid state at room temperature (example: olive oil). People initially believed that unsaturated fats were healthier than saturated fats, but experts say that saturated fats are healthy fats. Your blood biomarkers (lower blood triglycerides) improve with consumption of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. It is important that you consume adequate unsaturated fats when on a keto diet. An increase in fat intake does not causes cardiovascular issues. Your body metabolizes t
based on the length of the chain. The body absorbs the long-chain fatty acids and transfers them to the lymphatic drainage system after which the fatty acids move into the bloodstream. But this does not happen with short-chain fatty acids and medium-chain fatty acids. They do not go into the lymphatic system but travel to the liver directly from the gut via the bloodstream. If you deliver massive amounts of these short-chain and medium-chain fatty acids to the liver all at once, it can trigger the liver to convert these fatty acids into ketone bodies. Medium-chain fatty acids found in coconut oil are highly ketogenic.
But a few people might experience an upset stomach when they consume a large amount of medium-chain fatty acids. So these people will not be able to raise their ketone levels artificially. When you summarize all these concepts, you will be able to understand that you need to increase your dietary fat intake to the maximum to achieve ketosis. Ensure you include a variety of healthy fat from different plant sources such as nuts, coconut oil, avocados, olive oil, etc. On the contrary, the micronutrients are equally important must be acquired from the diet in minimum qualities. Minerals and Vitamins are the common examples o
icronutrients. Micronutrients in a Keto diet Sodium, magnesium, potassium and calcium are the important micronutrients that should go into your body during a keto diet. You need to be conscious of your micronutrient intake for the following reasons: – When you reduce your carb intake, you might have to lower the consumption of various other foods that are rich in micronutrients. Example: Vegetables and fruit – A few nutrients (sodium, magnesium, potassium, calcium) might go off-balance in your body during the initial 28 days of your keto diet, as most of these nutrients go out of your body as urine or sweat and the frequency of the excretion increases.
Your body resolves the issue naturally after it gets adapted to the diet. – You should increase your intake of sodium since you will lose more extracellular fluid due to frequent urination. The basic functionality of Sodium is to maintain the water balance, blood volume and cell membrane potential. It is also important for nerve conduction and acid-base balance. During the initial stages of the keto diet, your sodium levels might show a slight dip and it is therefore important for you to add extra sodium to your meals by including more salt.
This can also reduce the common side effect of the keto diet – muscular cramps that are mostly associated with low sodium. The fundamental functionality of Potassium, which is the principal cation in the intracellular fluid, is mostly associated with: – Electrical activity in cells (cardiomyocytes and neurons) – Cell membrane potential. Similar to sodium, the potassium levels also fall due to increased excretion and it is therefore necessary for you to add in more dark green vegetables, avocados and nuts to your keto diet. The other important element is Magnesium, which plays a major role in immune, nerve and muscle function. Magnesium levels fall due to the increased excretion at the beginning of the keto diet. You rarely come across a calcium deficiency on a keto diet as your regular intake of leafy greens, cheese and various similar staples can keep your calcium in control. Calcium is crucial for your bone health as well as muscle contraction along with cardiovascular wellness.