Keto Meal Dieting for Success in the New Year! 

By: Joe Martinez, RPh, PDE, CMS, Founder and CCO, HMS

Contributor: Stephanie Wu

The ketogenic (a.k.a “keto”) diet is a fat rich and low carbohydrate meal plan that has become a VERY popular diet for weight loss.   So, if it’s fat rich, how does the Keto diet help with weight-loss?  

Simple, it’s all about “Ketosis” — In ketosis, your body uses fat as fuel rather than the usual carbohydrates.  And, it’s also likely that you will find yourself more satisfied following meal time and feel full for longer too.  This is because of the decreased levels of appetite-stimulating hormones such as insulin and ghrelin that are required to burn carbohydrates.  These two major changes usually result in weight loss.

If we look at a typical 2000-calorie keto diet, this translates to about 165 grams fat, 75 grams of protein, and 40 grams carbohydrates.  In percentages, this means around 70-80% of the diet should be from (good) fats, 10-20% proteins and 5-10% from carbohydrates.  So far, so good… 

Fats and Protein

According to Harvard Health, most ketogenic plans allow foods high in saturated fat, such as fatty cuts of meat, processed meat, lard, and butter, as well as sources of unsaturated fats, such as nuts, seeds, avocados, plant oils, and oily fish.  

With that in mind, while the keto diet is popularly known to be a diet higher in proteins, protein actually only accounts for up to 20% of the daily calories. 

Why so little?  Eating too much protein can actually prevent ketosis. The building blocks of protein called amino acids can convert to glucose, which is a type of sugar. As you can remember, the goal in the keto diet is to burn fat not sugar.  In the keto diet, you want to eat enough protein to preserve lean body mass AND still encourage ketosis.

Carbs

On the Keto diet, it is very important to be aware of all foods that may have carbohydrates.  You’d be surprised at the list of high carb foods. For example and to name a few, whole grain breads, cereals, pastas, rice, potatoes, corn, starchy vegetables, beans, legumes and fruits like bananas and apples all are rich in carbs.  A word to the wise, be a label reader.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, listening to your body is important when taking on any new dietary change. While much research supports the many short-term benefits of the Keto-diet — including weight loss and possible improvements in cholesterol, blood sugar, and blood pressure levels (NCBI) — it is important to consult with your doctor before eliminating or severely increasing any food groups. Consulting a dietician or nutritionist may also help with guidance on the best meals to prepare if the keto-diet is your choice. 

And help is here just when you need it.  If you don’t feel like shopping, measuring, counting nutritional values, cooking and cleaning up the meals recommended by the dietician or nutritionist, then how about this? Check out these fresh Keto meals just for you!  Ready-made, chef-prepared and registered dietician-approved, home-delivered Keto meals and desserts from Healthy Meals Supreme.  Here are a few of my favorites.

Wishing you a brilliant and deliciously healthy New Year and new decade! Bon Appetit.

* Always check with your doctor or healthcare professional before making any changes to your diet or exercise routine.

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