The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, moderate-protein, low-carbohydrate eating plan that restricts carbohydrates to encourage your body to burn fat for energy. The goal is to get your daily calorie intake down to around 70% fat, 20% protein and 5% carbohydrates.
It’s recommended that you consume lots of healthy, unsaturated fats from foods like nuts and seeds, avocados, olive oil and coconut oil. You should also eat plenty of non-starchy vegetables including kale, leafy greens and Swiss chard, as well as broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts and asparagus.
Many people who follow a keto diet find that they lose weight quickly. The diet can also help you feel full and satiated, because it switches off the hunger hormone ghrelin. It’s important to drink plenty of water, as it will help regulate your hydration and electrolyte balance.
A study published in 2022 in the European Journal of Preventative Cardiology found that the keto diet is associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity. It may also help prevent high blood pressure and lower cholesterol.
Some people experience side effects when they first start the keto diet, such as headaches, fatigue and dizziness. These symptoms are often caused by a lack of carbohydrate, so it’s important to include some carbohydrates in your diet until your body gets used to burning fat for energy. Also, it’s a good idea to avoid processed, grain-based foods like chips and crackers and opt for whole grains instead.