Are your clients asking if they should start a ketogenic diet?
Whether you’re trying to figure out if it’s right for them or simply curious about all the success stories you keep hearing yourself, today’s guide will answer all your questions.
We’ll help you sort through the confusion so you can understand keto better and therefore better help your clients. You’ll learn:
● What keto is
● The health benefits of a ketogenic diet
● Who keto may be right for
To start, you should know the difference between being on a ketogenic diet, or being on keto, and being in a state of ketosis. These are not the same even though they are connected.
What is Keto?
Before you discuss a ketogenic diet with your clients, you should have a proper understanding of how it works.
Despite being around since the 1920s, keto diets are becoming super popular as more people report their awesome weight loss victories.
However, keto is not the high-fat, high-protein diet most people mistakenly assume it is.
In fact, many people are surprised to learn the standard keto macro breakdown is:
● ~70-80% of calories from healthy fat sources
● ~20-25% from high-quality protein
● ~5-10% from fiber-rich carbohydrates
But there’s more to the story than just a shift in macros.
For starters, the goal of keto isn’t just to lose weight, even though this is the biggest health benefit many people are after and see.
The primary focus of a keto diet is to achieve a metabolic state known as ketosis. This is where the real “magic” happens, so to speak.
When your clients are in ketosis, their bodies will switch their main source of fuel from the glycogen in digested carbohydrates to dietary and stored fat.
People in ketosis also start to produce energy molecules known as ketones during this time.
These newly formed ketones will give your clients:
● Sustained physical energy to help them power through their days and tough workouts without energy spikes and slumps common with high-carb diets.
● Long-lasting appetite suppression to help your clients eat fewer calories, snack less, and meet their weight loss goals.
And these are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the positive benefits associated with keto.
How a Ketogenic Diet Can Benefit Your Clients
When clients are able to reach and maintain ketosis, they may see these feel-good health perks as a result:
Weight Loss That Goes Beyond a Drop in Pounds
● It uses stored fat for energy. When your client’s body needs an extra push, it will turn to their excess fat reserves. This ups their ability to shed fat from their troubled areas so they can transform their body composition.
● Fat is more satiating, so your clients who struggle with overeating will graze less between meals.
● Blood sugar and insulin levels are stabilized so your clients are able to reduce the hormonal issues keeping them from weight loss. They also won’t experience those extreme energy dips like they normally would after a high-carb meal.
These are all wonderful for weight loss, but as we mentioned earlier, there are more advantages to following a keto diet than a better body.
4 Health Benefits of Keto Worth Considering
Here’s what else following a keto diet may give your clients:
#1: Improved Mental Focus
Ketones also act as a powerful source of brain fuel.
This form of steady energy has been shown to improve:
● Cognitive performance
● Memory recall in Alzheimer’s patients
● Cognitive impairment in older, aging adults
#2: Reduced Inflammation
A ketogenic diet helps reduce inflammation by increasing adenosine, a natural anti-inflammatory and pain reliever found in the body.
It can also lower your client’s perception of pain, which makes it easier for them to safely power through any discomfort.
This can positively impact your clients’ overall health and also ensures they recover properly from your workouts too.
#3: Relief from Depression
While exercise is great for combatting depression, when paired with a keto diet, it can have double the impact.
When your clients start a keto diet, they’ll also have a change in their brain energy, which can lead to better, more stabilized moods and less depression.
They’ll also have extra help lowering the levels of the neurotransmitter glutamate to reduce neurotoxicity in their brain.
When glutamate is too high, your clients will have more brain neurotoxicity and may experience issues like seizures and medical conditions such as epilepsy.
A ketogenic diet may drastically reduce or eliminate these risks, which also happens with this next benefit.
#4: Migraine Relief
If your clients suffer from migraines, they may also have high levels of glutamate just like those suffering from epilepsy.
Fortunately, ketones, those energy molecules we talked about earlier, have been studied as an effective way to prevent glutamate from spiraling out of control.
A small study involving two sisters also proved that a medically supervised keto diet could help them prevent the return of the 72-hour-long migraines they experienced. The sisters also lost weight too!
So Is Keto Right for Your Clients?
With weight loss, fat burning, mental health, and inflammation-reducing benefits, it’s easy to see why your clients may be curious about a ketogenic diet.
And now that you know a little bit more about it, you can safely decide if it’s something worth exploring for certain ones.
If you’re considering recommending keto to your clients, be sure to stress the importance of:
Keto is all about striking the right macro balance to achieve and maintain ketosis.
Help your clients do this and they may be able to see the positive health benefits discussed in today’s guide.
*This guest blog post is intended for our audience that has inquired about the Keto Diet and why it has become so popular. AFPA does not endorse, nor recommend, the Keto way of eating for any/all individuals. Nutrition Professionals should work along side a client's healthcare provider to determine if this style of eating is appropriate. Dietary modification remains the key to successful weight loss. Some known potentials side effects of the Keto Diet are loss of muscle mass, Keto "flu and bad breath, high cholesterol and mineral deficiencies.
The keto diet in neurological diseases has been implemented as a form of treatment. Use caution and work alongside the client’s healthcare professional. This style of eating is not appropriate for all individuals. Focus on the quality of food, eating plenty of fruits and vegetables.