Keto Craze: Diet helps pounds drop fast but is it safe?

Keto Craze: Diet helps pounds drop fast but is it safe?
Lots of folks turning to low carb Keto diet to drop pounds fast but is it safe? (Source: wsfa)

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - When it comes to losing weight there always seems to be that latest fad diet that everyone is trying. The Atkins, the Zone, the Paleo, and the Dash diet are just some of the popular diets we’ve seen over the years. Now there’s something else, the Keto diet.

“It has changed everything about who I am,” said Montgomery resident Jarrett Williams.

Williams has been going to the gym for years but he started to notice all that lifting wasn’t making a difference for his waistline.

“I knew I worked out six days a week and I knew I wasn’t losing weight, something was wrong.”

I’m sure this has happened to a lot of us. Williams saw a picture of himself and knew he had to do something different.

“So, my work put a photo on Facebook of us just dong activities at work. I knew I weighed 227 pounds, but didn’t realize what I looked like at 227 pounds.” Williams said.

So a little more than six months ago he talked to a friend about the Keto diet and decided to give it a try.

"It has completely changed everything. I have more energy. I think clearer. I look better. I feel better.” Williams said.

Williams has lost close to 70 pounds and says he feels like a new man. So what is the Keto diet and how does it work?

The Keto diet similar to the Atkins diet because it’s low carb, but if you’re doing Keto you have to do some math, or find an app to help you. The Keto diet consists of 60 to 75 percent fats, 15 to 30 percent proteins, and five to 10 percent carbs depending on your age, weight, and how active you are.

"When you don't eat a lot of carbs you have to switch to burning fat,” said Pamela Green, a nutrition expert with Baptist Health. “Fat produces ketones which puts a body in ketosis. Ketosis, not only is it weight loss, but it also suppresses your appetite."

So instead of burning carbs, your body starts to burn fat. The results can come quickly if you stick with it, but is this healthy?

Green says there are several things you should watch out for. She says if you have kidney disease too much protein can be dangerous. Also, if you have heart disease the high fat portion of this diet could lead to health issues. She says anyone considering this diet change should check with their doctor.

Green says right now the long term effects of this diet are unknown and there are other ways to eat healthy.

“A good meal plan to me is one that has all the food groups in it, and balance so you get all the nutrition.” Green said,

For Williams the Keto diet has been just what he was looking for. He went to the doctor and says all of his blood work looked great. Williams says he feels better than ever.

"I didn’t realize how much I had to lose and how good it feels to be back at my college weight.” Williams added.

But is this something you can do long term? Williams says he has purchased several Keto cook books so he can have a variety of low carb meals and snacks. Health experts still aren’t sold on this being a long-term solution.

“The red flag for me is when a diet eliminates an entire food group. People just can’t do that for very long.” Green added.

They main take away here, if you want to give Keto a try, do some of your own research and check with your doctor. For more information on the Keto diet, click this link.

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