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The ketogenic diet, or "keto" diet for short, is a low-carb, high-fat diet that has been shown to help people lose weight and improve their overall health. But if you're new to this way of eating, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. In this post, we'll break down the basics of the keto diet and provide some tips to help you get started.
First, let's talk about what the keto diet is and how it works. The goal of the keto diet is to enter a metabolic state called "ketosis," where your body begins to burn fat for fuel instead of carbohydrates. To do this, you need to drastically reduce your intake of carbohydrates and increase your intake of healthy fats. The typical keto diet includes a ratio of about 70-75% fat, 20-25% protein, and 5-10% carbohydrates.
When you first start the keto diet, it's important to understand that your body will need time to adjust to the new way of eating. This transition period, known as the "keto flu," can last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks and can cause symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, and irritability. To help ease these symptoms, it's important to stay hydrated and get plenty of electrolytes (such as sodium, potassium, and magnesium) through foods like avocados, nuts, and leafy greens.
One of the most challenging aspects of starting the keto diet is figuring out what to eat. To make things easier, here are some foods that are typically included in a keto diet:
- Meat: Beef, chicken, pork, and other meats are all great options for the keto diet.
- Fish and seafood: Fish like salmon and tuna are high in healthy omega-3 fatty acids and are a great addition to your keto meal plan.
- Dairy: Cheese, butter, and heavy cream are all great sources of healthy fats for the keto diet.
- Nuts and seeds: Almonds, walnuts, and pumpkin seeds are all great options for the keto diet.
- Healthy oils: Olive oil, avocado oil, and coconut oil are all healthy options for cooking and dressings.
It's also important to note that foods that are high in carbohydrates, such as bread, pasta, and sugar, should be avoided on the keto diet.
Starting the keto diet can be a bit of a challenge, but with a little bit of planning and preparation, it can be a great way to improve your health and lose weight. Remember to stay hydrated and get plenty of electrolytes, and don't be afraid to experiment with different foods to find what works for you.