Will the Ketogenic Diet Make Me Fatter and Increase My Cholesterol?

Weight gain and a higher cholesterol level are two of the biggest misconceptions about the ketogenic diet. To truly understand why the ketogenic diet will help you lose weight and lower your cholesterol level, you need to know what cholesterol is, and how the body burns fat.

* Here’s why you’ll not get fatter

The ketogenic diet will not make you fat or clog up your arteries. When you’re trying to lose weight with the ketogenic diet, you must be at a daily caloric deficit of about 500 calories. This is the basic rule of all weight loss.
You must consume less calories than you expend. Since you’re at a caloric deficit, even a ketogenic diet that’s high in fat will not cause you to gain weight. However, since you’re constantly feeding your body a fat rich diet that’s low in carbs, ketosis will set in.

That means, your body will be in a state where it burns fat for fuel instead of glycogen. This is the ideal place to be in. Now your body will tap into the stubborn fat stores and burn the fat there. As a result, you’ll actually see your bodyfat percentage drop.

Other diets like the Atkins diet, paleo diet, etc. don’t really create a state of ketosis. Fat loss with those diets usually revolve around a caloric deficit and exercise, whereas the ketogenic diet transforms the way your body gets its source of fuel. That’s why the keto diet is so powerful.

* Here’s why your cholesterol level will improve

It’s time to set the record straight. Bad cholesterol is caused by inflammation within the body. Eating simple carbs such as white flour products, processed foods and sugary foods, inflames the body. In response, the body creates cholesterol to act as a form of protection for the cells.

Eating natural, healthy fats does not raise your blood cholesterol levels. A common misconception is that the arteries get clogged because they’re filled with hardened plaque due to too much dietary cholesterol. This condition is known as atherosclerosis.

The truth of the matter is that atherosclerosis occurs when the arteries are inflamed and damaged due to oxidized lipoproteins getting through the arterial wall. Once again, this is due to sugar, processed foods and other detrimental foods – NOT natural healthy fats.

The ketogenic diet encourages you to consume natural fats such as olive oil, coconut oil, oily fish (such as salmon, tuna, mackerel), avocados, olives, eggs, walnuts, etc.

All the natural fat sources recommended by the keto diet will benefit the body in many ways. These foods are rich in fats and nutrients that the body craves.

Common sense will tell us that our ancestors would have eaten these foods.
Hydrogenated food oils, sugary doughnuts, French fries, etc. were not part of their diet. That’s why our ancestors were not obese.

If your bad cholesterol levels are high, the first thing you should do is reduce the inflammation in your body. The best way to do that is by getting on a ketogenic diet. The omega-3 fatty acids from the fatty fish, etc. will reduce the inflammation.

So, what that really means is that the ketogenic diet is the answer to the problem and not the cause. You can cast all your worries aside about this diet making you fat or raising your bad cholesterol levels. Quite the opposite holds true.

Many people all over the world have lost weight and improved their health after adopting the keto diet. You can join them too. Once you give it a try, you’ll wish you had done it sooner.

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No lies, no made up stats, no starving yourself. A simple straightforward approach to your body adapting to eating fat-based foods transforming you into a machine that melts the fat from your body.

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The Keto Diet: What Every Beginner Should Know

You may have heard that the keto diet works wonders for fat loss and you’re eager to try it. Right now it is the weight loss program choice of many celebrities. However, there’s just too much info floating around and you’re clueless where to start.

In this article, you’ll be given the bare facts simplified so that you have an idea of what the diet is all about and can decide if it’s right for you.

* Fat-based diet

The keto diet is very high in fat and your macros will roughly be made up of 70 to 80% fat, 20 to 25% protein and about 2 to 5% carbs. Most keto dieters do not exceed 50 grams of carbs a day.

Contrary to popular belief, eating fats is not detrimental to your health. In fact, it’s very beneficial… BUT you must only eat the good fats.

* Breaks your addiction to carbs

The biggest obstacle people face when embarking on most other diets is their food cravings. Since their diets contain carbs, they get these cravings and hunger pangs. The keto diet puts an end to the problem by breaking your addiction to carbohydrates.

* Your body burns fat instead of carbs

Most people burn glucose for fuel. This glucose comes from carbs. When you’re on a keto diet, your body converts fats into ketones and burn the ketones for fuel. Your body runs much more efficiently on ketones.
Since you’re using fat for fuel, the body will burn up your fat stores more rapidly. This is one reason why people lose more weight with the keto diet than any other diet.

* Easy to stick with

Unlike the paleo diet that is very strict, with the keto diet, you have much more freedom to eat foods you love. Butter, bacon, nuts, coconut oil, olive oil, salmon, fatty meats, etc. are all recommended in the keto diet.
The higher the fat macros, the better. Keto meals are often tasty, and you’ll not feel like you’re eating cardboard while on the diet.

* Anti-aging properties

The keto diet helps burn off tumors because the body is low in glucose. Your skin will be radiant, and you’ll feel much ‘lighter’.

Since processed foods are not encouraged in the keto diet, most of your food will be single ingredient foods which are nutritious and beneficial to your health.

The keto diet has been shown to improve brain health too. This is important as you age.

* Increased energy

One of the best benefits of keto is the abundant energy you feel when you’re burning ketones for fuel. You’ll not be lethargic, and it will seem as if a brain fog has been lifted.

You’ll have better sleep, more energy for your workouts, and have better concentration.

* Don't crave sweets

You’ll not have cravings for sugar or sweet foods when on a keto diet. During the first 4 to 7 days, you may yearn for some carbs and sweet foods. However, once your body goes into ketosis, you’ll not have these cravings anymore.

Unlike other diets where you’re still burning glucose for fuel, you’ll always have cravings for sugary foods and end up bingeing at night. This is one reason why so many diets fail. The dieter has not weaned himself/herself off using glucose as a fuel source.

By now, you should have an idea of what the keto diet is. This diet has been proven to work and while it will require a change in your eating habits, once you make the change, you’ll be glad you did.

Give it a try and enjoy the benefits that come from this powerful diet.

If you would like to get more information about the keto diet, get my book.

Beginners Keto
No lies, no made up stats, no starving yourself. A simple straightforward approach to your body adapting to eating fat-based foods transforming you into a machine that melts the fat from your body.

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4 Common Misconceptions about Weight Loss and the Keto Diet

The weight loss industry is filled with misconceptions, conflicting information and ‘broscience’ (opinions passed off as facts). It’s no wonder so many people are confused and spinning their wheels not knowing what to do when trying to lose weight.

The ketogenic diet has seen its popularity increase by leaps and bounds over the past few years as more and more people realize just how effective it is. Just like any other diet, it has its pros and cons… and no diet is perfect for everybody.

In this article, we’ll look at the common misconceptions about using the ketogenic diet as a tool to shed excess fat and look good.

1. It’s easy

Not really. The term ‘easy’ is subjective and it all depends on the individual. If you compared the keto diet to the paleo diet, then you might consider it a lot easier to adhere to, since the paleo diet is extremely stringent.

However, even with the keto diet, there is a period where you’ll need to adapt. Most people are addicted to sugar and carbs. Switching to a diet that gets 80 to 90 percent of its calories from fat can be challenging.

2. You’ll DEFINITELY get faster results with it

All diets will yield results if followed correctly. Speed of weight loss will vary from individual to individual. Will you lose more fat with the ketogenic diet? You might, if you follow the diet with a high level of compliance.

However, even then, it will take time to shed the fat. Weight loss is a slow process and you’re not going to lose 15 pounds in a week. Even if you manage 10 pounds, a lot of it will be water weight.

Most people have an institutionalized sense of impatience. They want results fast and they want it NOW! The keto diet will get you faster results than many other diets, but within a reasonable time.

You’ll not go from overweight to ripped in two weeks. Give yourself at least 2 months to see visible results. You might as well stay the course. The time is going to pass anyway.

3. The keto diet is dangerous

If followed correctly, the keto diet is not a dangerous fad. In fact, it’s extremely healthy. You will lose weight much more effectively, your blood sugar levels will stabilize, your bad cholesterol levels will decrease, your heart health will improve while your risk of cancer decreases and so much more.

It’s important to know the difference between the good fats and bad fats. Cold-pressed coconut oil is a good fat. Hydrogenated canola oil is a bad fat that’s high in monounsaturated fat, causes inflammation and accelerates the aging process.

When you’re on a keto diet, you MUST educate yourself well on what the good fats are. Then you’ll be able to consume the omega-3 fatty acids that your body needs and avoid the omega-6 fatty acids that are inflammatory. For more information on the keto diet, take a look at my book at the bottom of this post.

4. Will I get ketoacidosis?

This issue is probably the biggest worry that people on the keto diet have. When the ketones in your body are too high, ketoacidosis can occur. However, this is quite rare and tends to affect only those with type one diabetes. This is pathological ketoacidosis and not a nutritional one.

If you wish to err on the side of caution, you can purchase a set of urine strips from your pharmacy and monitor your ketosis. If your ketones are too high, you can consume some complex carbohydrates and that should reset things to normal. There’s no cause for panic.

These are 4 of the most common misconceptions surrounding the ketogenic diet. In another article, we’ll examine another HUGE misconception about whether the ketogenic diet raises your cholesterol level.

For now, just know that this is a safe and highly effective diet with many health benefits than can be accrued if you adopt it. Do give it a go and watch your waist size shrink and your fat disappear (with time).

Beginners Keto
No lies, no made up stats, no starving yourself. A simple straightforward approach to your body adapting to eating fat-based foods transforming you into a machine that melts the fat from your body.

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Five Reasons to Quit Sugar Now

Sugar is bad for you. Here are Five Reasons to Cut Sugar Now
Sugar is bad for you. Here are Five Reasons to Quit Sugar Now

Over three-quarters of packaged food in grocery stores today comes with copious amounts of added sweeteners, making it easy to overindulge, even if you pass on dessert. Most Americans eat over 82 grams of sugar daily, which is triple the amount recommended by the American Heart Association.

Over the course of a year, that equals 150 pounds of added sugars per person. Feeling gross yet?

Top Five Dangers of Added Sugar

It’s time to resolve to cut your sugar consumption levels down this year. Below are five health risks of overeating sugar and sugar substitutes, and the damage that they wreak on your body.

1. Driving Force Behind Type 2 (and Type 3) Diabetes

The results are in: eating too much sweet stuff raises your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. According to the CDC, an estimated 100 million Americans have the disease, and millions more are at risk. Insulin resistance is the trigger for diabetes, and foods filled with fat and sugar reduce your sensitivity to insulin, meaning your blood sugar levels go unchecked.

Sugary drinks tend to be the most dangerous. When the British Medical Journal conducted an analysis of fruit juice and soda, they found that even eight daily ounces raised diabetes risk by 13 percent. Likewise, research published on PLOS One shows that every extra 150 calories of sugar (the amount in a single can of soda) every day increases diabetes risk by one percent, compared to just 0.1 percent for non-sugar calories.

Now, new evidence from the Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology shows that sugar-filled diets might increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. In fact, the link between insulin resistance and Alzheimer’s is so strong that some scientists are considering renaming the disease as “type 3 diabetes.”

2. Promotes Addiction and Brain Fog

Eight times more addictive than cocaine. That’s what research from Princeton is reporting about the sinister side of sugar. Your body craves this sweet substance like it’s a drug because, well, it is. And like many other drugs, sugar only hurts your body in the process.

The taste of sugar triggers signals in your brain that light up its reward pathway and create a surge of feel-good hormones. Too much stimulation reduces their effectiveness, meaning you start needing larger amounts of sugar to feel the same way. Likewise, sugar-induced insulin resistance weakens the synaptic connections between brain cells, leading to impaired cognition, higher depression rates, and emotional mood swings that leave you depleted.

3. Develops into Dangerous Belly Fat

Eating refined sugar overloads your liver with fructose, and anything you don’t immediately burn is turned into fat—predominately around your belly. Not only does this leave you looking bloated, but it also leads to lingering health challenges. In fact, reports from Harvard reveals that abdominal fat can raise your risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, strokes, and premature death.

4. Triggers Premature Aging

Wrinkly, saggy skin is hardly the fresh start you want this year. Yet, sugary snacks might make it a reality. A study conducted at Dartmouth Medical School states that overindulging on sugar leads to glycation, a process where excess sugar molecules attach to collagen fibers, causing them to lose flexibility and strength. As a result, your skin loses elasticity and becomes more vulnerable to skin damage and sagging. A high-sugar diet also deactivates your body’s natural antioxidant enzymes, which leaves you more susceptible to sun damage and skin cancers.

5. Zaps the “Good” Bacteria in Your Gut

Your digestive system is a zoo of beneficial bacteria that keep things functioning as they should. Research funded by the American Cancer Society show that sugar alters gut bacteria in ways that affect mental performance and potentially raise toxin levels in your bloodstream. Because most sugars are digested without microbial help, these hungry bugs turn to nibbling on your intestinal lining instead. Permeating this barrier allows food particles into the rest of your body, which can cause inflammation and fungal growth like candida.

Further research from Tel Aviv University also shows that artificial sugar might promote the growth of harmful gut bacteria, which can lead to irritation, allergies and skin conditions, as well as digestive distress.

This Year, Cut Out Sugar for Better Health

The facts don’t lie.

Sugar is terrible for your health, and cutting it out only does your body a favor. So, commit to eat less sugar, and you’ll experience profound benefits in the process.

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NOTE: This article was originally published on the health blog SweetDefeat by Heather Bauer RD, CD.

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Easy Tips To Help Prevent Colds and Flu This Season

virusThe people who are exposed to germs from flu and colds on a daily basis, such as flight attendants, doctors, teachers, etc. probably know quite a few easy tips on how to avoid catching and even preventing the germs spread from a sneezing child in the classroom or a sick passenger on the flight - many will suggest that you get your seasonal flu shot in order to prevent the bug from taking hold of you.

But here are some really good tips from those people who are exposed to colds and flu on a daily basis:

  • Always wash your hands, and quite often too, because, no matter what line of work you are in, you are coming into contact with people who are contagious to you and you will need to wash your hands over and over again. Even when you are out and about, you are touching the elevator buttons, door handles, counters and other areas where you are coming into contact with dangerous germs. It sounds so simple but in fact, soap and water are doctors and nurses around-the-clock companions.
  • Try and use hand sanitizers that are alcohol based because if you are not near any soap and water, the sanitizer can kill off the flu and cold germs. That means not getting too close to people who are sick, like not shaking hands. Just make sure it contains at least 62% alcohol for it to be effective.
  • Keep your space around you clean - in other words, if you are sick, it is better for you to stay at home. Your job is to heal and not to pass on the germs to other people, particularly if you are really sick.
  • Live a healthy lifestyle, as it is important to look after your health. That means getting enough rest and nutrition. Many think these are just old wives tales, but it is really important to get good nutritional food into your system, not to smoke and to keep allergies under control. If you don’t, your upper respiratory tract could become inflamed. This makes you more vulnerable to get a virus.
  • Repair your gut because your gut is the gateway to health and almost 80% of your immune system is situated in the gut. That means it needs to be in peak condition. Take a top quality probiotic to keep up good levels of bacteria to fight off infection.
  • Go slow on alcohol and sugar consumption because when you consume too much, you suppress the immune system, causing leaky gut. Just moderate alcohol consumption can suppress your central nervous system too which is part of your important immune system.
  • Reduce stress because stress suppresses the immune system. Consider things like acupuncture, or yoga, or medication to reduce stress.
  • Take an immune booster which contains proteins and immunoglobulins which will boost your body’s line of defense.
  • Take supplements of glutathione and turmeric because they are antioxidants, important for the right functioning of the immune function. Glutathione is the main antioxidant in the body and is responsible for enhancing the immune system as well as assisting the liver with detoxification. Turmeric improves cardiovascular function and joint health.
  • Optimize on Vitamin D, which is a powerful immune system booster as it fights off infections. Pair your vitamin D supplement with vitamin K to ensure the vitamin D is well absorbed.
  • Drink a bone broth. Maybe you remember your mother or grandmother giving you chicken broth when you were sick and how it made you feel so much better. It’s not just folklore – bone broth does actually benefit your immune system. Studies show that when you eat chicken soup during respiratory infection times, you quell inflammation. It’s so easy to make – you boil turkey or chicken bones and vegetable pieces roughly for around 8 hours. Add some collagen or gelatin to the bone broth to optimize on healthifying your immune system and supporting a healthy gut to protect your body against invasive pathogens.

Keep up these tips in the flu and cold seasons and you will not only prevent flu and colds from invading your body, but will keep your body on the path to achieving optimal health. Getting sick can really stress out your immune system, increasing your risk of a flare-up of autoimmune conditions, chronic illnesses, and thyroid dysfunction. Say no to colds and flu and yes to health!

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Create a Better You Through Yoga

fitnessYoga is something different to most people. It’s quite diverse, and practitioners have different expectations when they start.

That’s perfectly okay. Whether your goal is greater enlightenment, a more toned and muscular body, or relief from disease, there’s a yoga for you.

The philosophy of yoga has been around for 5,000 years. That’s an undeniable staying power. Yoga is not just an ‘exercise’, it is a philosophy, a way of thinking rather than a religion. In ancient India, the word yoga meant union. It refers to a union of the entire self – mind, body, and spirit.

This union is achieved through physical poses, frequently called asanas, although asana is just one of the many types of yoga. These poses are meant to heighten awareness of mind and body, which makes yoga a natural corollary to meditation.

Today’s researchers are discovering the many benefits of yoga. While it can increase spirituality, it also has the ability to heal many ailments and diseases, especially stress, immune system disorders, and heart problems. It also provides increased flexibility, which can reverse the aging process.

The more vigorous yoga practices are considered cardiovascular exercises. Along with a proper diet, you will be able to lose weight. The gentler types of yoga do not have cardiovascular benefits, so remember to do additional exercises.

Why are people becoming interested in yoga? The most common reason is to improve flexibility and physical health. Besides the physical benefits, yoga also boosts the mental power and paves way to spiritual enlightenment. For most, it’s the spiritual awakening that turns yoga into an important part of their lives.

This is a gradual but wonderful development and opportunity for personal growth. The essence of yoga is always to become a better version of oneself.

If you would like to learn more about yoga, get this book!

Create a Better You Though Yoga
Yoga is something different to most people. It’s quite diverse, and practitioners have different expectations when they start. That’s perfectly okay. Whether your goal is greater enlightenment, a more toned and muscular body, or relief from disease, there’s a yoga for you.

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