I have heard about people losing weight on the “Keto” diet. Can you tell me what the Keto Diet is and if you would recommend it?
Willing to Try Anything
Dear Willing to Try,
The Keto Diet is a low-carb, high-fat, high-protein diet that leads to rapid weight loss, due to putting the body into a state of ketosis. Ketosis occurs when low carbohydrate levels cause blood-sugar levels to drop and the body begins breaking down fat to use as energy, resulting in fat loss. And yes, weight loss is rapid. However, the side effects — other than fat loss — of entering a state of ketosis are:
- Frequent urination
- Dizziness and drowsiness
- Low blood sugar
- Cravings for sugar
- Muscle cramps
The real problem with the Keto Diet is the problem with any fad diet, or any diet in which full food groups are removed. It is unsustainable for the long term. As soon as clients go back to that first bite of pizza, sushi, or a muffin, the weight comes back on even more rapidly than it was lost, usually with a few pounds extra.
Many people will read this and say, “No, this won’t happen to me! As soon as I quickly lose the weight I will go onto a balanced diet for maintenance!” While tempting, study after study shows that while all fad dieters intend to keep the weight off with a balanced plan, almost none do.
Remember, all diets work in the short term. Choose one that is sustainable as a lifestyle so that you don’t have to go off of it. This way you won’t just lose the extra weight — you will keep it off for life.
Basya Kovacs is a nutrition counselor at Nutrition by Tanya, and is a co-manager of the Five Towns location. Nutrition by Tanya offers personalized and practical weight management and nutrition counseling for men, women, and children. Nutrition by Tanya has locations in Boro Park, Flatbush, Williamsburg, Monsey, Lakewood, Five Towns, Monroe, the Upper West Side, and Israel (coming soon). The office can be reached at 844-TANYA DIET.