The current hype around ketogenic diet (or keto diet for shot) is crazy. If you haven’t tried keto yourself, there is an extremely high chance that someone you know is currently on keto and might tell you all about it soon. Keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet that not only helps you lose weight, but also comes with major health benefits. In fact, countless studies have shown that a low-carb, high-fat diet may even be beneficial against diabetes, cancer, epilepsy and Alzheimer’s. But with every positive there also comes a negative. There are many myths and half-truths regarding Keto circling around. In this article we are going to debunk the 9 most common myths about the ketogenic diet and discuss the truth about them.
Myth #1 – I can’t do Keto cause it’s too Difficult
There are countless different diets out there. If you are reading this, chances are high you have tried some of these diets, like intermitted fasting, reducing your calorie intake, going vegetarian etc. All of these diets take a certain amount of determination and strength to do properly. Keto diet is not different. It takes time to get used to the new restrictions and limitations that come with doing a keto diet. But the truth is, doing a keto diet is not too difficult. Anyone can start a Keto diet and anyone can follow the rules.
If you are experiencing difficulties or if you are afraid of not being able to go low-carb, high fat, then we recommend you read “The Top 9 Health Benefits of Keto Diet”. This Article will motivate you and will help you remember why going Keto can be so beneficial for you.
Myth #2 – Keto Diet is Something Completely Different than Low-Carb
Keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet. It may be somewhat different than a regular low-carb diet, but the difference is limited to the amount of carbs you are allowed to consume. While the keto diet requires you to stay at or below 20 grams of carbs per day, the low-carb diet simply suggests you to lessen your daily carb intake.
The average American takes in about 300 grams of carbs every day. So, while the low-carb diet suggests to lessen that amount, the keto diet requires you to lessen the amount as well, but all the way down to 20 grams. In terms of protein and fat consumption, both diets are suggesting similar quantities. Therefore, the differences are limited to only the amount of carbs you are allowed to consume every day.
Myth #3 – Keto Diet is Only Good for Weight Loss
Ketogenic Diet is great for weight loss. But the benefits of a keto diet extend far beyond just weight loss. Aside from lowering blood sugar levels, improving cognitive functions and digestive health, the ketogenic diet potentially even reduces the risk of diabetes, cancer, epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease. It may also help you reduce blood pressure and lead to a healthier heart.
Myth #4 – Keto makes you Feel Tired
When you first start out with your keto diet, you might experience occasional fatigue, muscles aches and sometimes even headaches. These “symptoms” are a sign that your body is actually switching from burning carbs for energy to burning fat as fuel. The symptoms are often referred to as the keto flu. The symptoms usually last anywhere from a few days to 4 weeks.
If you want to learn more about the keto flu and how to fight it, we recommend reading “What is the Keto Flu, and How to Fight it?”. We are also offering a great product which combats the keto flu with exogenous ketones – read more about it in our “Combating Keto Flu with Exogenous Ketones” article.
Myth #5 - Keto will Skyrocket your Cholesterol
Eating high fat doesn’t mean eating plates full of bacon every day. There are countless healthier sources of fats from animal-based foods like dairy products or plant-based foods like avocados, nuts and healthy oils.
In fact, keto diets (and low-carb diets in general) have shown to have decreased cholesterol levels compared to low-fat diets after one year of following the diet. If you want to read more about maximizing your fat intake in a healthy way and without raising your cholesterol levels, check out “Maximizing Fat Intake on Vegetarian Keto Diet”
Myth #6 – Keto as a Vegetarian is not Possible
Don’t let this myth fool you. Since keto gained in popularity in the last few years, there have been countless people questioning if its possible to follow the diet if you are a vegetarian or plant-based. The simple answer to this is yes, it absolutely is possible. Going keto as a vegetarian is actually not difficult at all and definitely doable.
In our “How to Follow a Ketogenic Diet as a Vegetarian” guide, we are going to tell you how to tweak the typical keto diet menu to fit your meat free lifestyle without having to worry about negative health side effects.
Myth #7 – Keto is not Possible with High Blood Pressure
With Keto diet, which is often linked to high fat foods that can cause high blood pressure, people often argue that the diet is not safe for people with high blood pressure. But the truth is, Keto diet is very safe and beneficial for persons with high blood pressure. But not cause of the food you take in during the diet, but because of the results you are going to see after going keto.
We obviously recommend you consult with your doctor first, but there are many heart healthy ways to going about your keto diet. The best and fastest way to lower your blood pressure and improve your heart health while on keto diet is to actually start a vegetarian keto diet. By consuming healthy, and low in cholesterol fats, you will be able to do a keto diet even while taking high blood pressure medication. To learn more about “Keto Diet and High Blood Pressure” we recommend you read our article about this topic.
Myth #8 – Calories don’t Matter when you are on Keto
Unfortunately, this one is a myth as well. For the most part, calories do matter for keto diets – especially for woman. If you consume more calories than your body can burn, then you will simply not be able to lose weight.
There seems to be a debate as to whether the main problem are excess calories, or excess fats that prohibit you from losing weight. But if you are following a strict keto diet, your excess calories generally come in form of fats. Therefore, the debate is unnecessary because both options lead to the same result – calories do matter.
To get a better idea of how you can lose weight while on the keto diet, take a look at our “How to Lose Weight With the keto Diet” Article.
Myth #9 – Cheat Days are Allowed on Keto
Unfortunately, again, this is a myth that’s too good be true. When you start a ketogenic diet, your goal is to reach ketosis as quickly as possible. For some this may take weeks or months, for others it may take just a few days. Ketosis is the process in which the body starts burning fat for energy instead of carbs.
A recent study from the University of British Columbia in Canada has found that if you are on the keto diet, you should limit your days of consuming 50+ grams of carbs or more to a maximum of three to four per year! The reason for this is quite simple. When your body gets flooded with sugars after a long low-carb diet, cell damage in your muscles and other body parts can occur. Though cells return to full function once blood sugar levels drop off, an intense cheat meal or cheat day can lead to long-lasting damage of your cells.
So instead of risking your body going out of ketosis cause of on cheat meal or one cheat day, focus on why you are doing a Keto diet and keep eating low-carb and high fat and protein meals. There are many great keto conform meals that will make you feel like you are having a cheat day, while actually eating keto approved meals.
If you want to read more about what cheat days mean for your keto diet and how you can substitute regular cheat day foods for foods that are allowed on a keto diet, check out “Can I Include Cheat Days in my Keto Diet?”
There you have it – the 9 most common myths and half-truths about the keto diet debunked and properly explained to you. There will always be naysayers and people that refuse to believe the keto diet is actually a great option for almost anyone to lose weight and stay healthy. But the truth, most facts that speak against the keto diet they will tell you are just myths and don’t have any scientific proof to them.