How the Ketogenic Diet Can Help You Lose Weight and Improve Heart Health

How the Ketogenic Diet Can Help You Lose Weight and Improve Heart Health

By Cynthia Thaik, M.D.

If you have been trying to lose weight and researching nutrition plans, then you may have heard of the ketogenic diet (also known as the keto diet). Basically this is a high-fat, low-carb diet similar to the Atkins diet or South Beach diet. Studies show that it can be highly effective for weight loss and have numerous health benefits.

What is the Keto Diet?

The keto diet involves consuming less than 50 grams of carbohydrates a day and replacing those carbs with healthy fats and moderate amounts of protein. This means drastically reducing your intake of sugar, white bread, grains and certain fruits and increasing your consumption of leafy greens, nuts, avocados, oils like coconut oil and olive oil and adequate amounts of meats, eggs, fish and cheese.

How Does the Ketogenic Diet Help with Weight Loss?

The reason that the keto diet is so effective for weight loss is that it forces your body to burn fat for energy instead of glucose. After a few days of being on the keto diet, your body reaches a metabolic state called ketosis and your liver starts producing ketones, which are used as fuel for the body and brain. Since it takes more calories to change fat into energy than carbs, your body burns away calories faster. The keto diet can also make you feel fuller and more satisfied, so you may eat less. Studies show that people on the keto diet lose more weight than those on low-fat diets.

nuts, avocado, salmon and olive oil - ketogenic foods

Is Keto Good for Your Heart?

Many people ask, “What do cardiologists say about the keto diet?” Well research shows that the keto diet can have many positive effects that may help reduce the risk of heart disease. Firstly, when you consume less carbohydrates, your glucose or blood sugar levels go down and your body does not have to produce as much insulin to use and store that glucose. A reduction in insulin can help protect the body against obesity, heart disease and certain types of cancer. In addition, the keto diet calls for constant source of leafy greens and heart-healthy fats, which help to lower blood pressure and HDL cholesterol. As one of the top cardiologists in Los Angeles, Dr. Cynthia Thaik may recommend keto to patients, based on their health condition and several other factors. 

What Should I Eat on a Ketogenic Diet?

The general rule with the keto diet for women and the keto diet for men’s health is to try to get only 5% of your energy from carbohydrates, 15% to 25% of your energy from protein (only moderate amounts because proteins can also be converted to glucose), and around 75% of your energy from fats. Foods to avoid include starches like potatoes and tubers, pastas, breads, pastries, alcohol and fruits that are high in carbohydrates. When planning your ketogenic recipes, try to stick to fresh greens, natural fats, vegetables that grow above the ground, seafood and lean meats.

Keto Friendly Doctors Near Me

Before starting any diet or lifestyle change, it is important to discuss with your doctor to see if the diet is right for you. This is especially true if you have a pre-existing medical condition or are worried about keto and heart disease. If you are in Burbank or the greater Los Angeles area and would like more information about the ketogenic diet, please get in touch with us at (818) 275-9350.

 

About the author

Dr. Cynthia Thaik, M.D. is a Harvard-trained cardiologist serving the greater Los Angeles community at her holistic health center in Burbank and Valencia, CA. Dr. Thaik is the author of Your Vibrant Heart: Restoring Health, Strength, and Spirit from the Body’s Core. To learn more about Dr. Thaik or the Holistic Healing Heart Center, or to schedule an appointment, please contact staff@drcynthia.com or call (818) 842-1410.