what are the dangers of the keto diet

By now, you must have heard about the ketogenic diet, a lifestyle that insists on significantly cutting down on carbs while optimizing on high-fat intake. And even though its benefits in suppressing appetite and weight loss have been hailed, keto advocates often tend to minimize on the downsides associated with this low-carb diet. However, our dieticians and health experts at ItWorks Keto warn that going for this course as solution for the problems it’s claimed to tackle could be dangerously harmful to the body’s ecosystem. A ketogenic diet is basically a systematic approach to self-starvation, which therefore means that by using it, you are depriving your body of certain nutrients required for its ecological functions. That aside, here are some aspects to consider before going full-on keto:

Keto Flu

One of the main disadvantages of the keto diet that most people are unaware of is the fact that there is no long-term research on how beneficial it would be several years down the line. Aside from there being no guarantee that the results will suffice or be as impressive as claimed, it’s unclear whether or not one would regain their lost weight or suffer intense health consequences. What’s promised though are short-term side effects, usually referred to by its users as keto flu characterized by fatigue, poor sleep, constipation, difficulty with exercise, lightheadedness and dizziness during the initial stages when one is undergoing transition. These symptoms can go on for days, weeks or even months until the body adjusts to tapping into fat for fuel.

Altered Hydration Levels

Electrolyte imbalances may be common for a person on a ketogenic diet if they are unaware of their hydration needs. While on this kind of diet, there are extreme demands for regular hydration to counter the depletion of glycogen in muscles as caused by production of lesser insulin by the liver. Water loss against glycogen depletion occurs in the ratio of 3:1 which means that the kidney flushes out more water along with such electrolytes as potassium, sodium, calcium and magnesium. An imbalance in these electrolytes causes a lack of body temperature control, cognitive distortion, fatigue, an irregular heartbeat and muscle cramps. It also increases the chances of one getting kidney stones due to inadequate hydration while on the keto diet.

Disordered Eating

As a restrictive diet, keto can quickly get obsessive and is particularly more dangerous for people prone to disordered eating. This may not exclusively apply to the keto diet but the fact that it’s a style that restricts an entire food group pretty much makes one susceptible. Even if you haven’t had a history of eating disorders, there is a likelihood of developing a negative attitude around food. A vast majority of users may not find the ketogenic diet sustainable, thus they may only stick with it for a few months. Once they fail to meet their expectations with this diet, returning to the original eating habits could trigger feelings of guilt and failure. Worst case scenario, this might result in disordered eating.

Negative Effect on Athletic Performance

There is mixed literature on how a low-carb diet can affect athletic performance but one thing that remains constant is that a lot of it points to a consistent decrease when an athlete is seeking optimal power output. Alongside this, you would be hard-pressed to strength-train and put on weight while on such a diet. This could be why the ketogenic diet is thought of as a better fit for endurance athletes though even for them, it’s still pretty challenging to maintain.

Reduced Intake of Fruits and Vegetables

The intake of fruits and vegetables is extremely limited while on a ketogenic diet. We are all well aware of the significance of fiber, minerals, vitamins and other compounds found in vegetables and fruits. It’s true that there are a lot of healthy yet high-carb foods that one can eat on the keto diet. This could explain why the diet is low in fiber, which definitely makes it potentially harmful in the long term. Fiber does not only offer protection against several gastrointestinal cancers, it also makes for a huge factor when it comes to fullness and weight loss. Furthermore, such a low-carb diet definitely enhances the vulnerability to constipation among its followers.

Closing Remarks

There might be so many good things you’ve heard about the ketogenic diet but when you look at the drawbacks, they outspan the benefits by far. The simple fact that their long-term side effects have not been fully explored pretty much makes them a no-go for anyone who really cares about their physical health and well-being. With so much being done to find alternatives to food-related problems, it can be easy to trust every conventional solution advertised blindly without looking deeply into the facts. If you have been debating on why you should do the keto diet, now you have every reason not to.

keto brownies

If there’s a secret to making perfect crunchy keto brownies – then it must be in the timing. Make a mistake of over baking them and you will end up with a dry pile of crumbs. I will share the “secret sauce” I use to achieve extra fudginess too. Welcome back guys, today we’re making keto brownies and I’m pretty excited. I’m sure you already know that keto brownies promote healthy weight loss and I’m not here to bore you with those details. Put on your baking gloves and let’s get started. You’re about to learn how to make keto brownies.

Ingredients/Preparation

Of all the keto recipes, this one is my favourite. Here’s what you’ll need

  1. Half a cup of butter
  2. Nine bars of unsweetened chocolate. We are going to use stevia to sweeten it
  3. Three large eggs. Bonus points if you can get them straight from the fridge. Cold eggs emulsify butter better.
  4.  One teaspoon of Stevia Sweetener. You can use other natural sweeteners too.
  5. One cup of almond flour
  6. One teaspoon of Cocoa powder
  7. A half teaspoon of baking powder (optional)

Other things you need to know

You will need about five minutes for preparation. Fifteen minutes for cooking. The above ingredients assume a serving of ten people. Scale appropriately depending on the number of people. Just like in other keto recipes, these brownies won’t exceed two hundred calories each.

Instructions

  1. Have the oven preheated to three hundred degrees (Fahrenheit) in advance. Line your favourite baking pan with aluminium foil and apply a light coat of butter.
  2. Use a pan (or microwave) to melt the butter and chocolate bars. Stir occasionally until they’re indistinguishable. If you decide to use the stove, water heat them instead. Let the mixture cool to lukewarm. Whisk the eggs. Every time I use eggs at room temperature, they tend to separate. This is why I recommend using cold eggs.
  3. Slowly stir in the almond flour then add cocoa powder. Then add the stevia sweetener. Stir lightly taking care not to over mix.
  4. Carefully transfer this batter onto the coated baking pan. It should be relatively thick at this point. Use your fingers to align it into position.
  5. Bake for ten minutes or until the brownies are no longer soft at the top. Whichever comes first. Insert a toothpick to ascertain that the centre is still very soft yet the top is no longer wet.
  6. Let them cool completely or they’ll deform during cutting

I love these brownies: Here’s why you should love them too.

Low in Carbohydrates

These keto brownies are so spongy and chewy that you won’t believe they don’t cross the two hundred calories mark. They’re good too for gluten intolerant people as they use almond flour instead of wheat flour. We’ve used stevia over natural sugar as you’ll be enjoying the same health benefits without compromising on taste.

Free from Harmful sugars

These keto brownies are indistinguishable from the real deal. Well, almost. They’re neither too sweet nor are they coffee-bitter. Experiment with varying amounts of erythritol, traditional vanilla extracts and organic stevia to find the perfect balance. Find out what proportions work best for you. This, my friend, is how I discovered the “secret sauce”.

Use almond flour

Well, honestly speaking, raw almond flour isn’t the most visually appealing thing you’ll see this week. Some of us find its texture rather unappealing. This is normal. If you find raw almond flour rather unappealing use classic almond flour instead. However, it’s worth noting that unblanched almond flour is more nutritious and this is why you should never put it off completely.

Simple to bake

I love sharing keto recipes that are so simple that anyone can follow along irrespective of their experience. Don’t you believe that good recipes are the ones that you can cut out as many steps as you want and you’ll still achieve the same great taste? In this recipe, we’ve used simple ingredients that are easy to find. You could toss in a few nuts and see if they’ll still be as great.

Easy to serve

Children love them served with whipped cream. You could also use serve them with a few berries to great a great timeless dessert. As the days go by, you’ll naturally find yourself cutting down on the amount of sweetener.