Discover the ketogenic diet, a low carb option for those who want to lose weight

The ketogenic diet is a type of regimen characterized by the elimination of almost all carbohydrate-rich foods, such as bread and rice, and increased consumption of options high in good fats, and it is important to keep a good amount of protein on the plate. This type of diet is useful for losing weight, as the body uses its own fat as a source of energy instead of carbohydrates from food.

The regimen is mainly indicated for those who aim to control and prevent seizures or epileptic seizures, but it can be recommended to treat obesity and type 2 diabetes.

As it is very restrictive, it is important that this diet is done under the supervision and guidance of a nutritionist. It is necessary to carry out a complete health assessment before starting the ketogenic, to find out whether it is possible to perform it safely or not.

How to make the ketogenic diet

The ketogenic diet consists of a drastic reduction in the amount of carbohydrates consumed in the daily diet. The indication is to eat 20 to 50 grams per day of carbohydrates alone, which corresponds to between 10 to 15% of total daily calories. This amount, however, can vary according to each person’s health status, length of diet and goals.

To compensate for this reduction, it is necessary to increase the consumption of foods rich in healthy fats, such as avocados, coconuts, seeds, olive oil, almonds and walnuts. In addition, the amount of protein consumed must correspond to 20% of the daily diet, it is recommended to consume meat, chicken or fish at lunch and dinner and include eggs and cheese in snacks.

When starting this diet, the body goes through an adaptation period that can last from a few days to a few weeks. In the meantime, the body will adapt to producing energy using fat rather than carbohydrates. Thus, it is possible that in the first few days symptoms such as excessive tiredness and headache may appear, which end up improving when the body adapts.

Another diet similar to ketogenic is the diet low carbHowever, the main difference between these two regimens is that in the ketogenic diet there is a higher consumption of fat to compensate for the lack of carbohydrates.

Cyclic Ketogenic Diet

Cyclic Ketogenic Diet consists of following the diet for 5 consecutive days, followed by 2 days in which carbohydrate foods such as bread, rice and pasta are allowed. This variation allows you to maintain the diet for longer and favors weight loss, also helping to increase the energy supply for exercise.

Although there is consumption of foods rich in carbohydrates in these 2 days, it is not recommended to consume sweets, ice cream, cakes and other products rich in sugar.

Allowed and prohibited foods
Meat, eggs and fatty fish such as salmon, trout and sardinesRice, pasta, corn, cereals, oats and cornstarch
Sausages like ham, chorizo ​​and baconBeans, soybeans, peas, chickpeas and lentils
Olive oil, oil and butterWheat flour
Sour cream, natural and unsweetened yogurts, coconut milk, almond milk, cream, cottage cheese, cream cheese, brie cheese, parmesan cheese, feta cheese, cheddar cheese, Swiss cheese, mozzarella cheese and blue cheesebread and toast
Peanuts, chestnuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, Brazil nuts, almonds, peanut butter, almond paste, cashew nut pastePotatoes, sweet potatoes and bananas
Fruits such as strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, cherries, avocado and coconutCakes, sweets, cookies, chocolates, caramel and sweet syrups
Vegetables such as spinach, lettuce, broccoli, onion, cucumber, zucchini, cauliflower, asparagus, red chicory, Brussels sprouts, kale, celery and paprikaSugar, brown sugar, ice cream, vitamins and sweeteners
Flax, chica, sunflower and sesame seedsChocolate powder, diet and processed products
Sauces like mayonnaise and mustardPizza, lasagna, cow’s milk
stevia and oliveAlcoholic beverages
Ketogenic diet menu option

The table below shows an example of a complete 3-day menu:

SnackDay 1Day 2Day 3
BreakfastFried eggs with butter + mozzarella cheeseOmelet made with 2 eggs and vegetable stuffing + 1 cup of strawberry juice with 1 teaspoon of flaxseedsAvocado smoothie with natural yoghurt and 1/2 tablespoon of chia
Morning snackAlmonds + 3 slices of avocadoStrawberry smoothie with coconut milk + 5 nuts10 Raspberries + 1 scoop of peanut butter
Lunch dinnerSalmon accompanied by asparagus + avocado + olive oilVegetable salad with lettuce, onion and chicken + 5 cashew nuts + olive oil + parmesan and sesame seedsMeatballs with zucchini noodles and parmesan cheese
Afternoon snack10 cashew nuts + 2 tablespoons of coconut chips + 10 strawberriesEggs fried in butter + curd cheeseScrambled eggs with oregano and grated parmesan
Who should not be on this diet

The ketogenic diet is contraindicated for people over 65 years of age, children and adolescents, pregnant women and breastfeeding women. It should be avoided by people at increased risk of ketoacidosis, such as type 1 diabetics, uncontrolled type 2 diabetics, people with low weight or with a history of liver, kidney or cardiovascular disorders such as stroke.

It is also not indicated for people with gallstones or who are undergoing treatment with medications based on cortisone. In these cases, the ketogenic diet must be authorized by the doctor and followed by a nutritionist. (With information from the Tua Saúde portal)