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 sardines||Rice, pasta, corn, cereals, oats and cornstarch|
|Sausages like ham, chorizo and bacon||Beans, soybeans, peas, chickpeas and lentils|
|Olive oil, oil and butter||Wheat 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 cheese||bread and toast|
|Peanuts, chestnuts, walnuts, hazelnuts, Brazil nuts, almonds, peanut butter, almond paste, cashew nut paste||Potatoes, sweet potatoes and bananas|
|Fruits such as strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, cherries, avocado and coconut||Cakes, 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 paprika||Sugar, brown sugar, ice cream, vitamins and sweeteners|
|Flax, chica, sunflower and sesame seeds||Chocolate powder, diet and processed products|
|Sauces like mayonnaise and mustard||Pizza, lasagna, cow’s milk|
|stevia and olive||Alcoholic beverages|
Ketogenic diet menu option
The table below shows an example of a complete 3-day menu:
|Snack||Day 1||Day 2||Day 3|
|Breakfast||Fried eggs with butter + mozzarella cheese||Omelet made with 2 eggs and vegetable stuffing + 1 cup of strawberry juice with 1 teaspoon of flaxseeds||Avocado smoothie with natural yoghurt and 1/2 tablespoon of chia|
|Morning snack||Almonds + 3 slices of avocado||Strawberry smoothie with coconut milk + 5 nuts||10 Raspberries + 1 scoop of peanut butter|
|Lunch dinner||Salmon accompanied by asparagus + avocado + olive oil||Vegetable salad with lettuce, onion and chicken + 5 cashew nuts + olive oil + parmesan and sesame seeds||Meatballs with zucchini noodles and parmesan cheese|
|Afternoon snack||10 cashew nuts + 2 tablespoons of coconut chips + 10 strawberries||Eggs fried in butter + curd cheese||Scrambled 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)