One of the things I discuss in my 45 day challenge is ketosis. This is such an important subject as to why the HCG diet is structured the way it is, that I wanted to share the information on a blog post.
What is ketosis?
When your body is fueled mainly from fats rather than calories, that is called ketosis. This is a normal state for your body to be in while fasting or low carb diet.
The “keto” in the word ketosis derives from the process of when the body produces small fuel molecules called ketones. Ketones are an alternative fuel for the body, used when blood sugar (glucose) is in short supply. They are produced in the liver if you eat very few carbs and only moderate amounts of protein. The body uses the ketones as fuel.
The process of converting from glucose to ketones can take approximately 48 hours, which is why the first few days of the diet can sometimes be challenging. Some of the side effects you may experience during this transformation are:
- Tiredness or fatigue
- Leg cramps
- Feeling thirsty all the time
- Bad breath
- Metallic taste in the mouth
- Nausea or stomach ache
- Sleep problems
Usually, the only types of people who need to worry about ketosis are those people with type 1 diabetes or breastfeeding mothers with type two diabetes. In both circumstances, you should have your physician monitor your ketone levels to make sure they don’t get too high.
In a normal ketosis diet, you may find many foods that are low carb and high fat (LCHF for short). The 2.0 diet does not have to be a high fat diet. High fat works well for many people in fueling their ketosis, but some people prefer to keep their fats at a moderate level and their protein higher. Since we are limited by our calories in phase two, we want to make those calories count.
People often think they will get the most benefit from eating higher proteins. However, people who have blood glucose issues often find that their blood sugar spikes when they eat too much protein. I prefer to keep my protein at 60-80 mg per day and make up the rest of my calories with fats. Someone who exercises or doesn’t have glucose issues may choose to split their fat and protein more evenly.
One good thing about fats is they will help keep you from getting hungry. If you find yourself struggling with hunger, feeling tired or getting headaches, try increasing your fats slightly until you find a good level for your body. This will vary from one individual to another, so you may need to adjust as you feel necessary.
You can monitor whether your body is in ketosis with Ketostyx, which are available at most drugstores in the US. Some people prefer to monitor their ketosis levels while on the diet, but most of us don’t worry about it as long as we are sticking to the diet plan.
I like fats, why shouldn’t I do an LCHF diet like the Atkins diet instead of HCG? Quite simply because those types of diets don’t work for some people like they do others. Consuming excess fat and protein can definitely lead to weight gain, and because everyone has a different metabolic type, it’s not a method that will work for every single person. Some people may experience some weight loss, but because the requirements of the Atkins diet are so loose, many dieters will be too liberal with it and eat too many calories to lose weight effectively.
Fat is the most calorie-dense of the three macronutrients, with 9 calories per gram. If you eat excessive amounts of high-fat foods, you run the risk of gaining weight. The only fats allowed in the HCG protocol are MCT oils such as coconut oil.
Virtually every dieter that completes a round of the HCG diet and sticks to the protocol will lose a significant amount of weight. The diet is certainly one of the strictest in terms of its allowable foods and daily calorie requirements, but it’s by far one of the most effective diets available anywhere.
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