Updated: Aug 14
The ketogenic diet has proven to be a useful tool for weight loss and a way to manage chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes. While there are many variations of the ketogenic diet, it generally involves eating a lot of fat, limited carbs, and moderate amounts of protein.
Keeping your carbohydrate intake as low as possible while upping the fat and protein intake will lead your body into a state known as ketosis. This is when the body burns fats instead of carbohydrates for energy.
There are several versions of the keto diet, each with different levels of carbs, fat, and protein. Keep reading to learn more about the differences between these diets and how they might help you achieve your health goals.
What is the Keto Diet?
The ketogenic diet is a diet that’s high in fat, moderate in protein, and low in carbohydrates. When following a keto diet, you aim to keep your body in a state called “ketosis.” On a standard keto diet, 75% of your daily calories come from fat, 20% from protein, and 5% from carbohydrates.
Ketosis is a metabolic state that occurs when you don’t have enough glucose in your body or another source of energy. When this happens, your body burns fat instead of glucose for energy. The goal of the ketogenic diet is to get your body into a metabolic state called ketosis. Ketosis is when your body burns fat for energy instead of glucose.
The Ketogenic Diet (Standard Variation)
The standard ketogenic diet is a low-carb diet where you’re eating 75% fat, 20% protein, and 5% carbohydrates. This diet is meant to put your body into a metabolic state known as ketosis. On a standard keto diet, 75% of your daily calories come from fat, 20% from protein, and 5% from carbohydrates. This means you’d eat about 100 grams of carbohydrates per day, or about as much in one piece of fruit.
The Cyclical Ketogenic Diet (CKD)
A cyclical keto diet is a variation of the standard keto diet. On a CKD, you’d follow a high-fat, low-carb diet for a few days followed by a low-fat, high-carb diet. Although the cyclical keto diet was originally designed for athletes, people who work in extreme conditions, or those who want to lose more than 5% of their body weight, this variation of the ketogenic diet is used by many people as a weight loss diet. On a cyclical keto diet, you’d eat high-fat, low-carb for several days followed by low-fat, high-carb for a few days. You may also choose to do “carb refeeds” where you eat more carbohydrates. These different variations help you avoid the “keto flu” which is what people experience when they first start a ketogenic diet.
The Targeted Ketogenic Diet (TKD)
A targeted ketogenic diet is a variation of the standard keto diet where you aim for a certain level of ketosis. There are different versions of a targeted keto diet, some with more carbohydrate than the standard keto diet. On a targeted keto diet, you would aim to get between 50-70% of your calories from fat, 20-30% from protein, and 10-20% from carbs.
The High-Fat, Very Low Carbohydrate Diet (VLCD)
A VLCD is a high-fat, very low carbohydrate diet. This is not a variation of the ketogenic diet. It is instead a diet that is high in fat and low in carbohydrates. The VLCD diet aims to limit the amount of carbohydrates you eat to less than 10% of calories per day. The VLCD diet is designed to induce rapid weight loss by lowering insulin levels and increasing the amount of fat your body burns for fuel.
The Standard Keto diet vs. the Ultra-High-Fat Keto Diet
The standard ketogenic diet is a low-carb diet that is meant to put your body into a metabolic state known as ketosis. A high-fat, ultra-high-carb keto diet takes the standard keto diet one step further. On a standard keto diet, 75% of your calories come from fat, 20% from protein, and 5% from carbohydrates. The ultra-high-fat keto diet follows the same macronutrient breakdown but with more fat: 90% fat, 5% protein, and 5% carbohydrates.
Keto diets for weight loss: Is the keto diet good for weight loss?
Studies show that the ketogenic diet can help you lose weight and improve your metabolic health, although not all keto diets are created equal. For example, one study followed obese people who followed either a ketogenic diet or a low-fat diet. After one year, the people following the ketogenic diet lost more weight, had improved metabolic health, and lost more fat in their thighs compared with the people on the low-fat diet. The ketogenic diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet that promotes weight loss, lowers blood sugar and insulin levels, and improves metabolic health. For many people, the keto diet is an effective weight los23 tool. The amount of weight you lose will depend on the type of keto diet you follow.
Cleaning the Keto Diet plate
The ketogenic diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet that puts your body into a metabolic state known as ketosis. This diet may promote weight loss, improve blood sugar levels, and change the way your body stores fat. Keto diets are not all made the same, so if you are trying to decide on a diet, you should consider the various types of keto diets and their related health risks and benefits before beginning.
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