More people than ever before are turning to natural health, sound diet and fitness regimens to stave off not only COVID-19, but its primary risk factors and dangerous comorbidities like obesity as well. Of the various diets currently circulating the global mainstream, none are as popular — or as straightforward for new practitioners — as the ketogenic diet, otherwise known as keto.
In this post, we go over everything you need to know about keto, as well as whether or not CBD products such as tinctures, isolates and broad-spectrum formulations can help or harm you on your fat loss journey.
What is Keto, in a Nutshell?
The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, adequate protein, low carbohydrate diet that forces the body to burn fat for energy. The brain’s preferred fuel source is glucose (sugar) and when sugar intake falls below an individual’s normal metabolic rate, it triggers the body to break down other sources of food in order to generate glucose. This process generates fats which are then converted into ketones by the liver.
Ketones can be used as an alternative fuel source for many cells in the human body including muscle cells and nerve cells; meaning that they can bypass insulin spikes while also providing essential nutrients needed by muscles during periods of exercise or fasting. The benefits of this type of diet include weight loss, reduced inflammation levels and better mental focus.
Some people may find that they have difficulty following a ketogenic diet if they are used to eating a high carbohydrate diet, as the transition to a ketogenic diet can involve a period of adjustment where cravings for unhealthy foods may be intense. However, with some planning and dedication, it is possible to stick to the ketogenic diet and achieve the desired results.
The ketogenic diet has been researched at various health organizations throughout the world including Oxford, Harvard Medical School and Johns Hopkins University. Research studies have shown that this type of dietary approach is effective for weight loss, but more research will need to be conducted before it can be recommended amongst other treatment options for diabetes.
Whether you’re a keto veteran or a dabbler in search of a solid diet plan, it’s worth noting that the essence of a functioning keto diet is burning fat and utilizing ketones. The key to keeping this balance is the maintenance of a key biological process known as ketosis.
What is Ketosis?
Ketosis is a metabolic state in which the body uses fat as its primary energy source instead of carbohydrates. Because you’re intentionally restricting carbohydrate intake to less than 50 grams per day — or about 10% of your total daily caloric needs — this forces your body to look for an alternate form of energy, namely fat.
Since the body doesn’t have much glucose to use as fuel, it breaks down fats into molecules called ketones that can be used by cells throughout the body. Ketones are then used by several tissues including brain cells and red blood cells, where they provide an alternative energy source for these cells when glucose reserves are low. Examples of this include biologically stressful periods, such as during fasting or starvation.
As of this writing, there are a number of potential upsides to a ketogenic diet recorded in scientific literature. When your body is breaking down fats instead of carbs for energy, you’re essentially converting fat into a usable fuel. This can lead to weight loss, reduced hunger or cravings, and improved blood sugar control. The diet is also proving successful at treating some forms of chronic disease such as Type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, and epilepsy.
CBD, Keto & Ketosis
Except in the case of CBD-infused edibles (e.g. gummies, cookies), many forms of CBD provide negligible amounts of calories, and certainly no carbohydrates. This means that supplementing with flavorless CBD isolates will not knock you out of ketosis and has no negative influence on your ability to maintain a ketogenic diet. Fortunately, discovering where to buy CBD isolate in large amounts is much easier, safer, and better regulated than it was just a few years ago.
How Can CBD Complement a Ketogenic Diet?
Studies show that CBD can have significant therapeutic potential, both for individuals just getting started on keto as well as veterans pairing the diet with regular exercise. Cravings, for instance, are fueled by ghrelin, which is known as the “hunger hormone.” Carbohydrate and sugar cravings are the most prevalent causes of regression in keto beginners, but the intensity of both can be significantly reduced by CBD, which has been shown to reduce the production of ghrelin while simultaneously boosting metabolism.
For more accomplished keto practitioners, CBD can play a role in exercise recovery and pain management by improving the symptoms of disorders characterized by either acute or chronic pain, inflammation and sleep dysfunction. This includes common conditions that can seriously hamper a keto-fueled exercise program, such as tendonitis, insomnia or bursitis.
Be sure to consult a physician before starting on a ketogenic diet and/or CBD supplementation, in order to plan solid values and dosage ranges for your respective vital stats (i.e. height, weight etc).
Interested in eating more healthy for life?
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