A keto diet is an eating plan that focuses on foods that provide a lot of healthful fats, adequate amounts of protein, and very few carbohydrates. The goal is to get more calories from fat than from carbs.
The diet works by depleting the body of its sugar reserves. As a result, it will start to break down fat for energy. This results in the production of molecules called ketones that the body uses for fuel. When the body burns fats, it can also lead to weight loss.
There are several types of keto diet, including the Standard Ketogenic Diet and the Cyclical Ketogenic Diet.
In this article, we explain the benefits of the keto diet, as well as its risks.
1. Supports weight loss
The ketogenic diet may help promote weight lossTrusted Source in several ways, including boosting metabolism and reducing appetite.
Ketogenic diets consist of foods that fill a person up and may reduce hunger-stimulating hormonesTrusted Source. For these reasons, following a keto diet may reduce appetite and promote weight loss.
In a 2013 meta-analysisTrusted Source of 13 different randomized controlled trials, researchers found that people following ketogenic diets lost 2 pounds (lbs) more than those following low fat diets over 1 year.
Similarly, another review of 11 studiesTrusted Source demonstrated that people following a ketogenic diet lost 5 lbs more than those following low-fat diets after 6 months.
2. Improves acne
Acne has several different causes and may have links to diet and blood sugar in some people.
Eating a diet high in processed and refined carbohydrates may alter the balance of gut bacteria and cause blood sugar to rise and fall significantly, both of which can adversely affect skin health.
According to a 2012 studyTrusted Source, by decreasing carb intake, a ketogenic diet could reduce acne symptoms in some people.
3. May reduce risk of certain cancers
Researchers have examined the effects of the ketogenic diet in helping prevent or even treat certain cancers.
One studyTrusted Source found that the ketogenic diet may be a safe and suitable complementary treatment to use alongside chemotherapy and radiation therapy in people with certain cancers. This is because it would cause more oxidative stress in cancer cells than in normal cells, causing them to die.
A more recent studyTrusted Source from 2018 suggests that because the ketogenic diet reduces blood sugar, it could also lower the risk of insulin complications. Insulin is a hormone that controls blood sugar that may have links to some cancers.
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