With people getting more conscious about their health one of the most hyped topics right now is the ketogenic diet. Ketogenic diet has been making its rounds through the internet as a ‘life-changing’ diet but people are still confused about its process.
Sushant Pradhan, a well-known fitness vlogger and now an entrepreneur, seems quite confident about the ketogenic diet and clarifies all the doubts that might come into your head when you are planning to get into the keto diet.
How did you come to know more about ketogenic diet and can you share your personal experience with us?
I’m pretty much updated about ketogenic diet now. I used to study a lot about the human body from the medical point of view and I became more and more fascinated by nutrition. Though ketogenic diet has recently become popular in Nepal, it’s been there for 3-4 years now. Even I gave it a try and it worked. I remember, I was around 85 kg when I took this diet for my photoshoot and I went down to 71 kg in just four and a half weeks.
How does Ketogenic diet work and why doesn’t it result in any reduction in the energy produced by the body?
In our regular diet, we have a large proportion of carbohydrate followed by protein and finally fat. In this case, the main source of energy for the body comes in the form of glycogen produced from the internal carbs. However, in ketogenic diet, we make the amount of carbohydrates almost non-existent in our body and replace the amount of carbohydrates with fats. So, the proportion of fat becomes larger, covering the portion of carbohydrate and protein. Now, the fats cover about 60% -70%, carbs about 5% and the remaining by protein. Since, our body doesn’t get adequate amount of carbs, the formation of glycogen doesn’t take place. In the absence of glycogen, our body starts searching for a secondary source of energy and in this process, the body starts producing ketones and uses it as the source of energy. The main concept of ketogenic diet is to use fat as the main source of energy instead of carbohydrates.
How are you so confident that ketogenic diet works for most people?
Let’s take a simple example. Rice is the primary source of carbs and we can eat it in huge quantities compared to meat which is a protein. Now, let’s consider fat which is eaten in much less quantity. So, when we make fat our primary source of energy, eating a little amount of food also satisfies our hunger and it works for most people.
There are some controversies related to this diet as people claim that it is not good for health. What do you think?
When it comes to health, there are many researches. There may be some who say it’s not good, but there are doctors who say that ketogenic diet increases the recovery speed, that it’s good for diabetic patients and also for cancer victims. For me, ketogenic diet is just a tool and not a miracle. It’s up to you to decide when you want to use that tool from your toolbox.
Can ketogenic diet be recommended to everyone or are there some limitations to it?
Keto diet works for sure. I don’t recommend this diet to everyone and it’s like a last tool in my toolbox because I know that it will work. Initially, when you are not used to a fitness lifestyle, there are other methods that can work as well.
What is the main drawback related with ketogenic diet?
One of the main drawbacks with this diet is that it’s difficult to sustain. In our country, one of the basic sources of carbs is rice. Now, imagine you are not allowed to eat rice forever. So, that’s what ketogenic diet is all about. It roughly takes about 5-7 days to reach the ketogenic stage. Let’s assume that I cut my carbs for all these 7 days but again ate it on the 8th day. This will take my body back to the first stage. Therefore you need commitment and it’s hard to stick with it.
What to eat?
Fat containing items. You are free to fry chicken or mix eggs and butter or anything that is basically the combination of fat and protein. Some people also increase the quantity of oil in their food. For vegetarians, it’s a little tough because it’s hard to find the complete protein source food.
Some suggestions to our readers?
People say it’s a magical diet but the fundamental principle is the same with this diet, i.e. consume less than what you are burning. So, always keep the basic concept in mind and you will definitely succeed.