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Ketogenic Diet: Pros & Cons

July 14, 2017

  

 

   In this continued series, I want to break down the various diet ideas that's become popular and give you (the "dietier") the pros and cons of some of these ideas. Do they live up to hype? I'll leave it up to you to decide. Like the many plans that are out there, make sure you consult with your primary physician or licensed dietician before moving forward with any of these ideas. Today's subject: The Ketogenic Diet. 

 

    The Ketogenic Diet, like most diets out there, have become increasingly popular in recent times. How it's structured is pretty simple: keep your carbohydrate intake to 20 grams or less daily, consuming a majority of your calories from protein and fats. Carbohydrates (coming from the foods you eat) are converted into glucose, which is the body's primary source for energy. Once glucose is no longer present, the body will then move it's attention to fat for energy, thus eliminating bodyfat in the process. By cutting back on carbs, your blood glucose levels will decrease. This will result in the production of a fat burning enzyme called HSL (hormone sensitive lipase), that will release triglycerides (or fat) from fat cells. The triglycerides will turn into fatty acids and glycerol. They will travel to the liver, which will at that point turn into keytones that can be used for energy in the cells to produce ATP (energy source). 

 

Pros:

 

1. will reduce insulin levels

2. cuts down on appetite

3. reduce body fat storage by burning excess bodyfat

4. good enough to schedule in a short time period to prepare for events and/or competitions

5. increases Thermogenesis, which is the amount of calories you may burn daily

6. a powerful treatment for obesity and may rapidly promote fat/weight loss. 

 

Cons:

 

1. there is usually a 2 week adaptation period (this is based on the individual's state of keto adaption) which can be uncomfortable while the body gets used to the caloric changes.

2. this is a very restrictive diet plan. Many people DO NOT like the idea of cutting carbs almost immediately after starting the plan. For that reason, this diet does not have a high success rate. 

3. it does require restraining eating at some restaurants and areas that sells food due to carbohydrate restriction. 

4. This plan is not ideal for athletes and enthusiasts since these specific athletes need carbohydrates as a main source for ATP

5. this plan is not ideal for Diebetics since they'll be a significant drop in blood glucose levels. 

6. Not ideal for individuals with cardiac issues, and can be at high risk for other related conditions such as high blood pressure & stroke. Additionally, you may have elevated blood cholesterol levels due to increased fat intake. 

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