The Health Benefits of Low-Carb and Ketogenic Diets

The Health Benefits of Low-Carb – Some people assert that these diets raise cholesterol and cause heart disease due to their high fat content.

However, in most scientific studies, low-carb diets prove their worth as healthy and beneficial.

Here are 10 proven health benefits of low-carb and ketogenic diets.

1. Low-Carb Diets Reduce Your Appetite

Hunger tends to be the worst side effect of dieting.

It is one of the main reasons why many people feel miserable and eventually give up.

However low-carb eating leads to an automatic reduction in appetite.

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Studies consistently show that when people cut carbs and eat more protein and fat, they end up eating far fewer calories.

2. Low Carb Diets Lead to More Weight Loss at First

Cutting carbs is one of the simplest and most effective ways to lose weight.

Studies illustrate that people on low-carb diets lose more weight, faster, than those on low-fat diets even when the latter are actively restricting calories.

This is because low-carb diets act to rid excess water from your body, lowering insulin levels and leading to rapid weight loss in the first week or two.

In studies comparing low-carb and low-fat diets, people restricting their carbs sometimes lose 2–3 times as much weight without being hungry.

One study in obese adults found a low-carb diet particularly effective for up to six months, compared to a conventional weight loss diet.

After that, the difference in weight loss between diets was insignificant.

In a year-long study in 609 overweight adults on low-fat or low-carb diets, both groups lost similar amounts of weight.

The Health Benefits of Low-Carb

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3. A Greater Proportion of Fat Loss Comes From Your Abdominal Cavity

Not all fat in your body is the same.

Where fat is stored determines how it affects your health and risk of disease.

The two main types are subcutaneous fat, which is under your skin, and visceral fat, which accumulates in your abdominal cavity and is typical for most overweight men.

Visceral fat tends to lodge around your organs.

Excess visceral fat is associated with inflammation and insulin resistance  and may drive the metabolic dysfunction so common in the West today.

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Low-carb diets are very effective at reducing this harmful abdominal fat.

In fact, a greater proportion of the fat people lose on low-carb diets seems to come from the abdominal cavity.

Over time, this should lead to a drastically reduced risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

4. Triglycerides Tend to Drop Drastically

Triglycerides are fat molecules that circulate in your bloodstream.

It is well known that high fasting triglycerides levels in the blood after an overnight fast are a strong heart disease risk factor.

One of the main drivers of elevated triglycerides in sedentary people is carb consumption especially the simple sugar fructose.

When people cut carbs, they tend to experience a very dramatic reduction in blood triglycerides.

On the other hand low-fat diets often cause triglycerides to increase.

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5. Increased Levels of HDL Cholesterol

High-density lipoprotein (HDL) is often called the (good) cholesterol.

The higher your levels of HDL relative to “bad” LDL, the lower your risk of heart disease.

One of the best ways to increase “good” HDL levels is to eat fat  and low-carb diets include a lot of fat.

Therefore, it is unsurprising that HDL levels increase dramatically on healthy, low-carb diets and while they tend to increase only moderately or even decline on low-fat diets .

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6. Reduced Blood Sugar and Insulin Levels

Low-carb and ketogenic diets can also be particularly helpful for people with diabetes and insulin resistance which affect millions of people worldwide.

Studies prove that cutting carbs lowers both blood sugar and insulin levels drastically.

Some people with diabetes who begin a low-carb diet may need to reduce their insulin dosage by 50% almost immediately.

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In one study in people with type 2 diabetes, 95% had reduced or eliminated their glucose-lowering medication within six months.

If you take blood sugar medication, talk to your doctor before making changes to your carb intake, as your dosage may need to be adjusted to prevent hypoglycemia.

7. May Lower Blood Pressure

Elevated blood pressure, or hypertension, is a significant risk factor for many diseases, including heart disease, stroke and kidney failure.

Low-carb diets are an effective way to lower blood pressure, which should reduce your risk of these diseases and help you live longer.

8. Effective Against Metabolic Syndrome

Metabolic syndrome is a condition highly associated with your risk of diabetes and heart disease.

In fact, metabolic syndrome is a collection of symptoms which include:

  • Abdominal obesity
  • Elevated blood pressure
  • Elevated fasting blood sugar levels
  • High triglycerides
  • Low “good” HDL cholesterol levels

The Health Benefits of Low-Carb

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However, a low-carb diet is incredibly effective in treating all five of these symptoms.

Under such a diet, these conditions are nearly eliminated.

9. Improved ‘Bad’ LDL Cholesterol Levels

People who have high “bad” LDL are much more likely to have heart attacks.

However, the size of the particles is important.

Smaller particles are linked to a higher risk of heart disease while larger particles are linked to a lower risk.

It turns out that low-carb diets increase the size of “bad” LDL particles while reducing the number of total LDL particles in your bloodstream.

As such, lowering your carb intake can boost your heart health.

10. Therapeutic for Several Brain Disorders

Your brain needs glucose, as some parts of it can only burn this type of sugar. That’s why your liver produces glucose from protein if you don’t eat any carbs.

Yet, a large part of your brain can also burn ketones which are formed during starvation or when carb intake is very low.

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This is the mechanism behind the ketogenic diet, which has been used for decades to treat epilepsy in children who don’t respond to drug treatment.

In many cases, this diet can cure children of epilepsy.

In one study, over half of the children on a ketogenic diet experienced a greater than 50% reduction in their number of seizures, while 16% became seizure-free .

Very low-carb and ketogenic diets are now being studied for other brain conditions as well, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

Medical Benefits of Ketogenic Diets

The application and implementation of the ketogenic diet has expanded considerably.

Keto diets are often indicated as part of the treatment plan in a number of medical conditions.

Epilepsy

This is basically the main reason for the development of the ketogenic diet.

For some reason, the rate of epileptic seizures reduces when patients are placed on a keto diet.

Pediatric epileptic cases are the most responsive to the keto diet. There are children who have experience seizure elimination after a few years of using a keto diet.

Children with epilepsy are generally expected to fast for a few days before starting the ketogenic diet as part of their treatment.

Cancer

Research suggests that the therapeutic efficacy of the ketogenic diets against tumor growth can be enhanced when combined with certain drugs and procedures under a “press-pulse” paradigm.

It is also promising to note that ketogenic diets drive the cancer cell into remission.

This means that keto diets “starves cancer” to reduce the symptoms.

Alzheimer Disease

There are several indications that the memory functions of patients with Alzheimer’s disease improve after making use of a ketogenic diet.

Ketones are a great source of alternative energy for the brain especially when it has become resistant to insulin.

Ketones also provide substrates (cholesterol) that help to repair damaged neurons and membranes. These all help to improve memory and cognition in Alzheimer patients.

Diabetes

It is generally agreed that carbohydrates are the main culprit in diabetes.

Therefore, by reducing the amount of ingested carbohydrate by using a ketogenic diet, there are increased chances for improved blood sugar control.

Also, combining a keto diet with other diabetes treatment plans can significantly improve their overall effectiveness.

Gluten Allergy

Many individuals with gluten allergy are undiagnosed with this condition. However following a ketogenic diet showed improvement in related symptoms like digestive discomforts and bloating.

The Health Benefits of Low-Carb

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Most carbohydrate-rich foods are high in gluten.

Thus, by using a keto diet and a lot of the gluten consumption is reduced to a minimum due to the elimination of a large variety of carbohydrates.

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>>> Before you go check more articles below <<<

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4>>>>Keto diet plan and menu for beginners

5>>>>Top 10 ketogenic foods list for keto diet

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7>>>>Food You Can Eat on Keto Diet

8>>>>The Benefits of the Ketogenic Diet

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