Ketogenic diet

Diets whose menu consists of low-fat foods have been replaced by diets in which fats predominate in the diet. This includes the ketogenic diet, one of the latest feelings in dietetics. This nutritional system helps you lose weight without starvation and meticulous calorie calculations. In addition, proper protein and fat intake minimizes muscle loss.

How to achieve weight loss with a ketogenic diet

The term ketogenic diet is derived from the word ketosis. It is a special metabolic state in which fat molecules are broken down into ketones to provide energy to all the organs and tissues in the body. Ketosis is achieved through a low carbohydrate intake (more than 50 grams of net carbohydrate per day) and the presence of a sufficient amount of quality fat in the diet.

foods for a ketogenic diet

Normally, the energy required for vital cell activity is the result of a process of glycolysis, the breakdown of carbohydrates into ATP. Because the foods we eat are critically low in carbohydrates, our bodies have switched to an alternative energy source - fat.

In the liver, fatty acids are broken down into ketone bodies, which are used as energy for the brain and other organs of the human body instead of ATP. In a state of ketosis, the body turns into a perfectly functioning machine in which excess gas is burned in a gas tank.

And when you eat predominantly carbohydrate foods, some of the carbs inevitably turn into body fat and are stored in reserve, deforming the shape.

To summarize. Ketosis is a physiological process characterized by increased ketone bodies in the blood and urine. One of the main signs of the special condition of the body is the smell of acetone, which flows from the body and secretions.

Types of ketogenic diet

The ketogenic diet has several options:

  • Default. . . It is a low carb (up to 5%), moderate protein (about 20%) and high fat diet (about 75%).
  • High in protein. . . Nutrient ratio: 60% fat, 35% protein and 5% carbohydrates.
  • Targeted. . . While on it, it is allowed to add carbs on training days.
  • Cyclic. . . Includes carbohydrate loading periods. For example, 5 ketogenic days and then 2 high carb days on the menu.

Standard and high-protein keto diets have been adequately studied and are recommended for beginners. The last two diet options are more suitable for bodybuilders and athletes.

Advantages of a ketogenic diet over other nutritional systems

Until recently, most nutritional advice was to reduce portion sizes and keep fatty foods to a minimum. But it turned out that we had been getting bad advice about nutrition for decades, especially about the effects of fatty foods on weight gain. Research in recent decades suggests that a high-fat diet does not work for long-term weight loss. Consequently, a traditional low-calorie diet is virtually ineffective for the vast majority of people.

Today, carbohydrates make up a large part of our diet and negatively affect health, especially hormonal balance. For example, insulin, the level of which is directly related to excessive carbohydrate intake, increases fat stores. In contrast, a low-carbohydrate diet causes significant weight loss and all the major risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

When you consume carbohydrates, the pancreas produces more insulin to cope with the rise in blood sugar. This eventually leads to insulin resistance followed by type 2 diabetes and the development of an inflammatory process. But if you eat less carbohydrate food, you will need much less insulin, and high levels of this hormone will not interfere with the weight loss process.

Many people are worried about the possible negative effects of ketosis on the body, as well as how a person can lose weight without giving up fatty foods. A ketogenic diet not only promotes weight loss but also improves health.

In this nutritional system, ketones are used, which the liver produces from its own fatty deposits and lipids derived from food. The body’s metabolism recovers completely and excess pounds melt quickly. Thus, the keto diet is an effective weight loss tool. A low carb and high lipid diet affects the body in three main ways:

  • Provides a saturation effect. A person on a keto diet has no problem with hunger. The diet consists mainly of quality fats and proteins - nutritious foods that are quickly filled. Due to low carbohydrate intake, insulin no longer affects appetite, it increases it excessively. It is now enough of small portions and appetite is naturally regulated. A low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet rebuilds metabolism, suppresses hunger, and reduces the usual doses of food.
  • Paradoxically, consuming lipids helps the body release fat and lose weight, while carbohydrates have the opposite effect. Thus, a low carb diet is better for burning fat than a low fat diet. The processing of carbohydrate foods releases a lot of insulin, which encourages the body to accumulate fat in the fat cells. Decreased insulin levels successfully help the body use fat for energy and lose weight fast.
  • Another benefit of a ketogenic diet is its ability to preserve muscle tissue rather than lose it. A low-calorie, high-carbohydrate, low-lipid diet burns only a fraction of fat during weight loss. Unfortunately, with such a diet, the body uses its own muscles to convert it into glucose for energy, instead of using fat stores. This leads to a deterioration in the quality of the body.

This is interesting!It should be understood that a ketogenic diet is different from a low carb diet. A low-carb diet assumes 80 to 100 grams of carbs per day on the menu. This is not enough for ketosis.

Keto diet white list and stop list

The amount of carbohydrates in the diet of a ketogenic diet should not exceed 30-50 grams per day. Based on this, the diet is formed: it is mainly based on meat (mainly grass-fed animals), fish, poultry, eggs, nuts, high-quality animals and vegetable fats, non-starchy vegetables.


  • Foods high in carbohydrates.
  • Sugar soft drinks, juices, cakes and pastries, ice cream, chocolate and sweets.
  • Cereals: bread and pastries, pasta, cereals.
  • Fruit: All fruits except avocado.
  • Legumes: peas, beans, lentils, chickpeas and peanuts.
  • Root crops and tubers: potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, beets.
  • Fake diet foods: low fat or low carb.
  • Sweeteners (excluding stevia and erythritol).
  • Prepared sugars with spices and sauces.
  • Alcoholic drinks.
  • Hydrogenated fats: margarine, smear.


  • Meat: beef, pork, fat, ham, sausage, bacon, chicken and turkey.
  • Fatty fish: salmon, trout, tuna, salmon and mackerel.
  • Seafood: shrimp, crab, mussels.
  • Whey protein.
  • Eggs: chicken and quail.
  • Greasy cream and butter.
  • Whole milk cheese: goat, cream, blue or mozzarella.
  • Nuts and seeds: Almonds, walnuts, macadamia, flax seeds, hazelnuts, pumpkin seeds, chia and sunflower seeds, sesame seeds.
  • Natural vegetable oils: cold pressed olive oil, coconut oil, unrefined sunflower oil.
  • Avocado and mushrooms.
  • Low carb vegetables: broccoli, tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, lettuce, peppers, brussels sprouts, cabbage, asparagus, celery, spinach, zucchini, parsley, dill, olives.
  • Spices: You can use salt, pepper, and a variety of healthy herbs and spices.
  • Stevia and erythritol.
  • Cocoa powder.
  • Drinks: coffee, tea, soda without sugar.
  • Berries: blueberries, cranberries, raspberries, strawberries.

There are enough products on the whitelist to provide a tasty and varied diet for a long time.

The weekly diet of the ketogenic diet

So a ketogenic diet is mostly based on foods like meat, fish, eggs, butter, nuts, healthy vegetable oils, natural animal fats, avocados and low carb vegetables. To avoid monotony, it is better to combine different meats and vegetables. In the long run, it nourishes the body with nutrients and will have a positive effect on health. The ketogenic diet menu offers a wide range of delicious and nutritious foods. The rough weekly diet of the ketogenic diet makes it easier to get into the system.


  • Breakfast: crispy bacon, boiled eggs and tomatoes.
  • Lunch: salad with chicken, olive oil and feta cheese.
  • Dinner: salmon spinach cooked in butter.
  • Breakfast: sugar-free yogurt with coconut oil, cocoa powder and stevia.
  • Lunch: beef fried in coconut oil with vegetables.
  • Dinner: broccoli casserole with cheese and cream.


  • Breakfast: omelette with quail eggs, tomatoes, basil and goat cheese.
  • Lunch: avocado stuffed with salted salmon and boiled egg.
  • Dinner: fatty minced beef dumplings and vegetables.


  • Breakfast: nutritious cocktail of coconut milk, berries and cinnamon.
  • Lunch: shrimp salad with olive oil and avocado.
  • Dinner: pork chop with parmesan and broccoli salad.
  • Breakfast: scrambled eggs with bacon and mushrooms.
  • Lunch: fried chicken legs on the salad.
  • Dinner: beef steak decorated with fresh vegetables.


  • Breakfast: omelette with avocado.
  • Lunch: pork chop with asparagus.
  • Dinner: chicken stuffed with pesto sauce and cream cheese, boiled broccoli.


  • Breakfast: sugar-free yogurt with coconut oil, cocoa powder and stevia.
  • Lunch: beef fried in coconut oil with vegetables.
  • Dinner: broccoli casserole with cheese and cream.


  • Breakfast: scrambled eggs with ham, cheese and vegetables.
  • Lunch: salad with cabbage and bacon.
  • Dinner: White fish, eggs and spinach cooked in coconut oil.


  • Breakfast: scrambled eggs with bacon and mushrooms.
  • Lunch: fried chicken legs on the salad.
  • Dinner: beef steak decorated with fresh vegetables.

With a long break between meals, you can quench your hunger with healthy keto snacks. This could be:

  • some pieces of cheese, fatty meat or fish;
  • a handful of nuts or seeds;
  • some olives;
  • 1-2 hard boiled eggs;
  • a few slices of dark chocolate with more than 70% cocoa content;
  • water, whole milk or almond milk based protein shakes;
  • strawberries with heavy cream;
  • a stalk with celery guacamole;
  • whole milk yogurt mixed with walnut butter and cocoa powder.

It should not be overlooked that in order to enter ketosis, the diet must contain 75% fat, 20% protein and 5% carbohydrates.

Interesting fact!Keto coffee, anti-tank or bulletproof coffee is a very popular beverage in this food system. Many people substitute breakfast with a cup of coffee according to this recipe. There are many variations on the subject of bulletproof coffee, but most add a tablespoon of sour cream, butter, coconut oil and vanilla extract to a cup of strong sugar-free coffee.

How much can you lose weight with a ketogenic diet?

To better understand the dynamics of weight loss, you need to know that a person is going through the following phases of a ketogenic diet:

  • The initial rapid weight loss is the induction phase. It is usually characterized by rapid weight loss. But you should know that during this period, excess water is removed primarily by the body and not by fat.
  • A stabilization phase during which a new balance of water and glycogen is established. This can lead to stopping weight loss or even a slight weight gain. Don’t panic: this condition doesn’t last long (5-7 days).
  • Total ketoadaptation is a metabolic state in which the body "puts up" to its current state and begins to use fat as fuel, and the brain changes from glucose to ketone. With all the recommendations used during this period, the weight is steadily and rapidly reduced. In addition, this phase is characterized by low levels of hunger, increased physical endurance, clarity of thought, and a stable emotional background. The condition of the skin improves.

Attention!Contraindications to the ketogenic diet are pregnancy, lactation, diabetes with insulin treatment, diseases of the thyroid gland, increased intracranial pressure.

What to eat at home outside of a ketogenic diet

Most restaurants offer meat or fish dishes. You can order such meals by substituting carbohydrate garnishes (french fries, cereals) with non-starchy vegetables. Egg dishes such as scrambled eggs or eggs and bacon can also be ordered. Another favorite on the ketogenic diet list is the bunless burger. You can add avocado, cheese, bacon or eggs to keep you full. You can taste any type of meat in Mexican restaurants, adding cheese, guacamole, salsa and sour cream. A cheese sheet or whipped cream berries are suitable for dessert.

Side effects of a ketogenic diet and minimizing them

Although a ketogenic diet is safe for healthy people, it can have side effects during the adaptation period. This phenomenon is known as ketoflu and usually lasts for several days. Ketoflu may cause the following symptoms: dry mouth, headache, dizziness, insomnia, nausea, increased appetite, frequent urination, indigestion, decreased performance, palpitations. To minimize this, try minerals containing magnesium, sodium, and potassium, and drink plenty of clean water (the amount you drink can be up to 3-4 liters a day). Increasing the amount of salt added to foods also helps, preferably pink Himalayan or sea salt.

14 mistakes people make on a ketogenic diet

A low carb diet is the most effective way to lose excess fat today. Nevertheless, you may encounter a plateau effect with such an energy system. To understand why weight doesn’t move from a dead end, you need to analyze your diet and lifestyle. Perhaps one of the following common mistakes prevents you from losing weight:

  • There is not enough fat in the diet. . . In the case of a ketogenic diet, energy intake is regulated by fat, as the ratio of proteins to carbohydrates remains more or less constant. Much of the menu should include high-quality, high-lipid foods (avocado, fatty fish and meat, poultry skins, sour cream, cream, etc. ).
  • Chronic stress. . . In case of stressful overload, cortisol levels increase. This contributes to an increase in blood sugar and a decrease in ketone levels. To treat high sugar levels, the body produces more insulin. This removes metabolism from the fat burning system. To avoid this, you should try to reduce your stress levels.
  • Too much physical activity, especially vigorous cardiovascular training, increases cortisol stress hormone levels. An increase in cortisol is accompanied by an increase in fat stores, especially unhealthy visceral fat around the waist. You can try a substitute for cardio workout, pilates or yoga.
  • The total protein content is low. . . It is important to eat enough protein. You can increase your protein intake over a longer plateau, but you should not exceed 1. 8 grams per kilogram of body weight. It is worth noting that over-consumption of high-protein foods triggers the process of gluconeogenesis and increases insulin levels. And high insulin levels block fat burning.
  • Too many low carb desserts. . . Low-carb foods can help overcome sugar addiction and make it easier to enter a low-carb diet. But it’s best to avoid eating foods labeled "low-carb. "
  • The diet does not include vegetables, allowed fruits and berries. . . Many low starch vegetables are essential in ketorethion. Broccoli, greens, lettuce, cauliflower, zucchini, peppers, avocados, or berries do not harm weight loss and nourish the body with dietary fiber.
  • Persistent lack of sleep or disturbance of the circadian rhythm. . . This is one of the factors that hinders the achievement of consistent weight loss. People who do not pay enough attention to a proper daily routine produce less growth hormone. This disrupts glucose metabolism and lowers leptin levels. It is a hormone that indicates satiety. Lack of sleep also increases the levels of ghrelin, the hunger hormone. People who do not get enough sleep are more prone to gain weight and lose weight extremely slowly. You need to learn new healthy habits: sleep 7-9 hours a day, do not use the computer before going to bed, keep the bedroom completely dark.
  • Overeating nuts. . . This is also one of the most common causes of weight streaks or even weight gain. Walnuts do not bring out ketosis, but are high in calories and easy to overeat. For example, 100 grams of macadamia nuts contains more than 700 calories and more than 70 grams of fat, which is almost half the daily weight loss for most people trying to lose weight. This doesn’t mean you have to completely eliminate nuts, you just have to pay close attention to detail.
  • Too much dairy in the diet. . . Dairy products cause a wave of insulin. Reduce your intake of high-protein dairy products such as cheese and yogurt. If the weight then starts to drop, it is the cause of the plateau. In the future, it will be better to use butter and sour cream instead of these products.
  • Armored coffee. . . Some say daily consumption of this drink causes weight gain for breakfast. As soon as people stopped drinking bulletproof coffee in the morning, they started to lose weight again. It is better to drink this drink from time to time and eat a full meal for breakfast.
  • Alcohol consumption. . . Strong drinks significantly interfere with the intense weight loss of a hated kilogram. Alcohol has extra calories and other disadvantages to lose weight. Alcohol also increases appetite, dehydrates the body and suppresses self-control. Together, this prevents weight loss.
  • Too many snacks. . . Following a nutritious ketogenic diet virtually rejects the need for snacks. Two to three main meals a day (or less) are enough. To approach such a system, you need to follow a few simple rules. Don't eat if you're not hungry. Eat enough protein foods. Only include real foods in your diet: eggs, meat, fatty fish, non-starchy vegetables, fermented foods, and whole dairy products. Remember: you should only eat if you are hungry, even if it happens once a day. Don’t let others dictate what and how often to eat.
  • Lack of diet. . . Smart diet planning significantly improves your weight loss and helps you achieve your goals. Planning meals on time prevents excessive snacking and helps avoid eating disorders. This doesn’t mean you have to constantly check your diet, but it does help you avoid common mistakes, especially for those who aren’t familiar with the ketogenic diet yet.
  • Wrong choice of physical activity. . . Excessive exercise increases appetite and thus can prevent weight loss. Depending on the end goal, you should choose an appropriate workout program, usually for at least 30 minutes a day.

Analysis of dietary style, physical activity, and daily routine to detect systemic defects will help identify and eliminate the factors that hinder effective weight loss. After all, a ketogenic diet is one of the best ways to lose weight today.

Important!Lack of results from a ketogenic diet can lead to health problems - adrenal or thyroid problems. In this case, you should consult a doctor.

Benefits of a ketogenic diet

A ketogenic diet is critically low in carbohydrates and high in fat. Thus, the keto diet is similar to the Atkins diet. This type of diet puts the body in a state of ketosis. When this happens, the body uses its own and edible fat as energy. A ketogenic diet causes a steady drop in blood sugar and insulin levels. Together with the increased ketone content, this has a positive effect on health.

  • A ketogenic diet is an effective method of weight loss and a way to alleviate certain conditions. Research shows that people who follow a ketogenic diet lose 2 to 2 times more weight than a low-calorie, low-fat diet.
  • The diet of this food system is so rich that you can lose weight without counting calories and without regulating weight and portion sizes.
  • The keto diet lowers blood sugar levels and increases insulin sensitivity. It can help people with pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes fight the disease.

But the health benefits of a ketogenic diet don’t stop there. The keto diet is actually used to treat neurological diseases such as epilepsy. Studies have shown that diet can be indicated in the complex treatment of a wide range of different diseases:

  • Heart disease. A ketogenic diet helps lower body weight, cholesterol and blood pressure.
  • Alzheimer's disease. Ketoration can reduce the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease and slow its progression.
  • Epilepsy. Research has shown that a ketogenic diet can reduce seizures in children with epilepsy.
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome. A ketogenic diet can help lower insulin levels, which triggers the development of polycystic ovary syndrome.

A ketogenic diet is a low carb, high fat diet. This method of eating lowers blood sugar and insulin levels and changes your metabolism (from carbohydrates to fats and ketones). However, the use of low-carb foods does not mean the use of tasteless diet foods at all, as fat lends a special flavor to your favorite foods and there are no strict restrictions. The ketogenic diet helps to control hunger naturally, so it is very easy for a person to control his gastronomic desires. This allows you to lose weight fast, and when you reach your ideal weight, you can keep the results forever.