What is the Keto Diet?
If you’re one of the approximately 45 million Americans who go on a diet every year, then odds are you have heard the word “keto” mentioned at some point. Short for the ketogenic diet, keto is an ancestral type of diet that really isn’t a diet at all but rather a lifestyle choice in which one’s diet consists of foods closer in alignment with what our ancestors ate. In many ways it is similar to the Paleo diet, but there are differences between the two.
Unlike the paleo diet, the goal of the keto diet is to get your body into a state of ketosis, in which it is being fueled by fat instead of by sugars and carbohydrates.
Keto vs Paleo
Both keto and paleo are considered ancestral diets because they each take a very low carb approach to food intake. They allow for higher amounts of protein and fats with very little allowances made for carbs and zero refined sugars.
Of the two, paleo allows for more carbs than keto, with the type of carb making all the difference. For instance, in paleo, you can eat carbs as long as they come from whole foods, like sweet potatoes, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, or fruit.
In keto, while you are allowed carbs, they shouldn’t account for more than 5% of your daily dietary intake. Plus, the type of carb is even more important on the keto diet. For instance, someone on the keto diet would choose cauliflower or Brussels sprouts over sweet potatoes because they have less sugar. In terms of fruit, on the keto diet, low sugar fruits like berries are preferred over bananas, apples, citrus fruits, peaches, and other sweet fruits.
What are Macros?
When most people start on the keto diet, they track what they eat by “counting macros.” Macros are the macronutrients that are being ingested, but they can also be counted as percentages of fat, protein, and carbs.
The standard ketogenic diet recommends 75% of one’s daily dietary intake coming from high quality fats, 20% from protein, and 5% from carbs. There are also other variations of the keto diet that allow for different variations in macros, including:
- Cyclical keto: This diet involves periods of higher-carb refeeds, such as 5 ketogenic days followed by 2 high-carb days. Most commonly used by athletes and bodybuilders
- Targeted keto: This diet allows you to add carbs around workouts and as such is also typically only used by athletes and bodybuilders
- High-protein keto: This is like the standard ketogenic diet, but it allows for more protein. The ratio is often 60% fat, 35% protein and 5% carbs
Who Benefits Most from Keto?
The keto diet was initially created to help treat patients with neurological diseases like epilepsy but today it is popular among all demographics. And, it has been shown to be especially beneficial to those with diabetes or prediabetes. One study found that keto improved insulin sensitivity in diabetic patients by 75%. In another study that compared the keto diet to a high-carb diet, 95.2% of the ketogenic group were also able to stop or reduce diabetes medication, compared to 62% in the higher-carb group. Other studies have found the keto diet to be beneficial for those suffering from:
- Heart disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Parkinson’s disease
- Brain injuries
- Polycystic ovary syndrome
Dietary Challenges of the Keto Diet
Despite the benefits, a lot of people have difficulty maintaining the keto diet because of its strict dietary requirements. When you’re on keto, you should greatly reduce or eliminate the following:
- Sugary foods
- Grains and starches
- Sugar-free diet foods
- Root vegetables and tubers
- Beans and legumes
- All fruit (except for a very small amount of berries)
- Low-fat products
- Processed foods
- Unhealthy fats
The foods allowed on a keto diet include:
- High-quality meats and fatty fish
- Full fat cream and butter
- High fat nuts and seeds
- Unprocessed cheese
- Low-carb vegetables
- Healthy oils, herbs, and spices
Can’t Find a Keto-Friendly Snack? The Cookie Department Has the Answer
One of the greatest challenges people have on the keto diet is solving their snacking dilemma. While cravings decline once the body reaches a state of ketosis, people on the keto diet still miss the occasional treat. Most are resigned to making keto-friendly desserts and “fat bombs,” but these take time and a lot of ingredients to make.
At The Cookie Department, we have finally created the ultimate keto-friendly treat option that you can take with you wherever you go. Our brand-new keto-friendly cookies offer all the sweetness, and decadence you love about premium cookies without all the sugar, carbs, and guilt. Plus, they’re made using fully functional ingredients that work for your body instead of against it. Nobody thought it could be done, but we did it!
Check out our full selection of keto-friendly cookies online today, use 10% off coupon code KETO10 at checkout and enjoy cookies again!