If you did research before starting the keto diet plan, then you have probably read about its early origins as a treatment for children with treatment-resistant epilepsy.
Dating back to the early part of the last century, ketosis was found to help control the unhealthy fats that were suspected of triggering seizures.
Revived in the 2000s, the keto diet plan is now massively popular with people of all ages for its use as an effective weight-loss method. In fact, it has become so prevalent that it has significantly impacted food manufacturers and restauranteurs as people search for healthy eating alternatives.
Surprises on the Keto Diet Plan
But what else has come to light for people who eat keto? Turns out that several health-related benefits have been attributed to the keto diet plan.
Let’s take a look at eleven different benefits that people have been finding when eating on the keto diet. Some of these surprises impact most people who adopt a keto diet menu, but a few are impacting specific diseases in a very positive way.
Depression and Anxiety Subside
Without a doubt, people who eat keto are finding that their depression and anxiety symptoms have diminished significantly. In fact, this improvement has been the subject of a number of studies each finding this to be the case in animals as well as humans.
When people focus their food intake on the keto diet menu, they are cutting out sugars and processed foods and instead eat healthy fats and lean protein. This reduction in sugar and artificial sweeteners may be one reason that people are reporting improved moods and reduced symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Energy Levels Skyrocket
In the first few days of eating on the keto diet, many people feel a general lethargy, and some report symptoms commonly called “the keto flu”. This happens when the body switches from burning sugar from eating carbs to burning fat for energy with keto.
However, once those symptoms subside and your body adapts to being in a state of ketosis, your metabolism kicks up a notch (or ten). People report being full of energy and having much greater endurance that is sustainable for longer and longer periods even on fewer calories.
It’s long been known that controlling your blood sugar can help you manage your cravings. With the keto diet plan, you go beyond just controlling your blood sugar levels. Instead, you have a solid, sustained source of energy that isn’t reliant on the highs and lows that come with eating processed foods.
On keto, cravings disappear when you get off the sugar rollercoaster. No more eating sweets for breakfast and then crashing hard by mid-morning and craving more sugar. With the keto diet, you are no longer controlled by your sugar levels and instead experience steady energy throughout the day.
Better and More Restful Sleep
The initial phase of adapting to the keto diet plan can include insomnia and fitful, disturbed sleep. Once you get through the first few days, you may find yourself getting much more restful, deep sleep, and waking fully rejuvenated.
While several studies have been done that found improved sleep for those on the keto diet, the general consensus is that ketogenic eating increases adenosine activity and that helps to relax the body and nervous system allowing for deep, slow-wave-enhanced sleep.
Anti-Aging and Skin Repair is Possible
Everybody wants to avoid aging! But the truth is your skin loses its elasticity over time and, is further hit with an onslaught that includes the effects of environmental factors like ultraviolet light and sun.
The general aging process breaks down the subcutaneous connective tissue that we rely on to appear younger. Our skin becomes more fragile, and the lack of natural oils continues to diminish a youthful appearance. So can anything help?
While there are several good products on the market to moisturize your skin, it’s been shown that eating a low carb, low sugar diet, like the keto diet, and drinking plenty of water has a profound effect in slowing the deterioration.
Numerous studies have shown that over-consumption of sugars and carbs damages the collagen molecules and elastin that the skin needs to stay young-looking. The American Academy of Dermatology says that a diet with linoleic acid (from vegetable oils, avocados, and nuts) can minimize wrinkles and should be part of a comprehensive plan that includes using sunscreen and avoiding smoking.
A Natural Appetite Suppressant
When following a keto diet plan, people often feel as if they have to “remember to eat”. That’s because eating low carb positively affects your blood insulin levels which naturally suppresses your appetite.
Think of it this way — if you’re used to a diet that includes sugar and highly processed foods made with white flour, there’s a good chance that you have experienced the cravings and enhanced appetite that come with elevated insulin levels.
When you switch to a keto diet, your insulin levels are in check and your appetite naturally normalizes.
Inflammation is a huge problem in healthcare today and is a contributing factor in chronic pain, diabetes, arthritis, heart disease, and numerous autoimmune diseases.
A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine cited a low-carbohydrate diet as a major contributing factor in reducing inflammation.
Following a keto diet plan allows you to reduce the free radical production that inflames the linings of blood vessels and further aggravates inflammation. It also stimulates the release of beta-hydroxybutyrate, a ketone that then blocks the inflammation-aggravating immune system receptors.
Type 2 Diabetes Symptoms (and Pre-Symptoms) Resolve
Type 2 Diabetes is often regarded as a progressive, chronic disease in the medical community. Healthcare providers often approach it as unavoidable in patients with Metabolic Syndrome or pre-Diabetes Type 2 and there are some studies showing over 50% of adults in the US are heading toward or already have Metabolic Syndrome.
It doesn’t have to be that way.
It’s simple math — when you cut your daily carbs to between 20–40 grams, you severely reduce the sugars in your system and improve your blood glucose levels as well as promote weight loss. Today, we are seeing more and more providers prescribing the keto diet to help reverse the effects of Metabolic Syndrome and Type 2 Diabetes.
Improvements in Heart Health
You wouldn’t expect it, but there is a lot of evidence that says one of the keto diet side effects is improved heart health even with its high-fat content (because, as we know, the diet calls for healthy fat).
It makes sense since the keto diet reduces inflammation and lowers oxidative stress which are leading contributors to heart problems. Secondarily, the weight loss experienced with the keto diet can definitely help to lower blood pressure and further reduce the risks of heart disease and stroke.
While the medical community has as many proponents as skeptics, it’s clear that further study is required to see the full value of a keto diet on heart health, blood pressure, and cholesterol.
Liver Health Improves
As part of a diet high in carbohydrates, the liver can suffer from non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) which is common in Type 2 Diabetes and is currently found in over 25% of the US population. If the condition is not reversed, it can lead to cirrhosis and ultimately liver failure.
Clearly exacerbated by a high-carb diet and sedentary lifestyle, NAFLD can usually be effectively addressed in the early stages by diet changes and increased activity. Studies have found that the levels of liver enzymes are greatly reduced when eating a keto diet and the disease process may actually be reversed.
To Wrap Up
We have shared eleven unexpected results that come from eating on the keto diet plan. Whether you are just starting out or have been a long-time adherent, these results seem to make it clear that keto promotes a healthy lifestyle. The keto diet can be practiced without feeling deprived or like you are missing out, but promote great health and a positive lifestyle.
When you ask, “Is the keto diet safe?”, the answer is in most cases. You know your body better than anyone, try it and see how you feel. Nutrail.com offers additional information and low-carb products here to support your journey.
NuTrail — Keto Granola, Biscuits, Bread and Baking Mixes
Join our Keto Community on Instagram & Facebook.
Sign up to receive NuTrail emails.