Your nutrition, alongside your daily activities, plays a vital role in keeping your health in a good state. Recommended diets may vary depending on your goals and condition. And while there are tons of diet types available, two of the most common, and are usually the subject for debates, are keto and plant-based.
What is a Healthy Diet?
A healthy diet is a balanced diet – this means taking off all unnecessary fats and sugars and consuming more foods that are rich in vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients. A balanced diet includes fruits, vegetables, grains, proteins, dairy, and oils.
Both Keto and plant-based diets can actually help you with your fitness goals. To help us understand the better option, let us dig deeper into how the two diet types affect our body processes.
What is a Keto Diet?
If you encountered the term ketosis in Biology class, you probably have an idea of what this diet comprises. Keto diet reduces carbohydrate intake by replacing it with fat. You might wonder how consuming fat and reducing carbohydrates help you with achieving a healthier body. Simple, your body becomes more efficient in burning fat because instead of carbohydrates, your body utilizes fats and turns them into ketones, the energy capsule for your brain and muscles.
In addition, this diet helps drop your blood sugar and insulin levels. Alongside that, the keto diet can help lower your risk to a wide range of diseases including cancer, epilepsy, and heart disease.
What is a Plant-Based Diet?
From the name itself, a plant-based diet pertains to consuming foods that are primarily from plants including fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, some oils, whole grains, legumes, and beans. A plant-based diet is basically rich in fiber, high in vitamins and minerals, and low in calories and saturated fat. A study by the Journal of the American Heart Association found out that a plant-based diet reduces mortality risk by 25%.
The beauty of going plant-based is that it does not exclude dairy or meat at all rather, you are only going to focus on choosing larger proportions of plant-based foods for your daily plate. In fact, a plant-based diet comprises 55-60% calories from carbohydrates, 20-25% calories from protein, and 15-25% calories from good fat.
Keto and Plant-based diet Effects on the Body
Because you already have an idea of the difference between the two diet options, it is important to understand the effect of going on diet mode. Whether you choose keto or plant-based, the first few weeks would be difficult for your body. Controlling cravings can make it even more challenging. But if you really want to achieve a healthy body, nothing can stop a motivated person, right?
Despite having the same goal, not all diet plans work equally for everyone. It is essential that before choosing the best option for you, you must know the effects of a certain diet. Others go on a trial first to see if their bodies can adapt to the specific diet. But most people see consulting a nutritionist or someone who can be trusted with nutrition recommendations more convenient.
Research from the American Academy of Pediatrics shows that a Ketogenic diet actually gives the effect of losing weight with a minimal amount of time. However, complications await in the long run because the restriction of certain vitamins and minerals make it difficult for some parts of your body to function well. The initial adverse effects of this diet include a surplus of acid in your stomach (acidosis), lower blood sugar levels (hypoglycemia), and dehydration. Later adverse effects include an abnormal amount of fats (dyslipidemia), kidney stones, and slow growth rate.
Surprisingly, plant-based diets have little known negative side effects. It is the perfect example of a balanced diet such that scientific evidence points it out as the most recommended diet.
Keto and Plant-based diet for weight loss
With the health risks brought by obesity, weight loss is probably the top transformation goal for most people in the United States. In addition, the country alone recorded a prevalence of 42.2% of obesity in 2017-2018.
To achieve optimal health, most people take on different efforts to ensure that they are active and are actually eating well. However, not all people know the value of observing a balanced diet for a healthier weight loss. Thus, some would actually starve themselves and become dysfunctional and weak unknowingly.
Above, we’ve learned the effects of Keto and plant-based diets in our bodies. In addition, knowing the mechanisms of weight loss as a result of the diet you’ll want to apply may help.
True enough, most people would always opt for quicker results. However, one must know that losing weight too quickly may also result in a number of side effects. This includes slowing down your metabolism as the rapid weight loss may be caused by calorie deprivation, loss of muscle mass instead of fats, dehydration for low=carb or no-carb diets, negative effects on mental health, and more gains in case one might night be able to successfully keep up with his diet and activities.
The Keto diet may have been very common to a lot of people especially with a lot of testimonies of vast weight loss results existing. For quite some time, it has created a buzz knowing how it promotes a win-win situation with achieving the desire end result quickly and still eating some of your favorites.
However, studies have shown that this low carb, high-fat diet has actually deprived one of consuming your body’s primary fuel – carbohydrates and thus, jeopardizing your macronutrients and resulting in a calorie deficit.
Studies show that those who consume more animal fat and saturated fatty acids are at higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes. These are just some of the reasons people switch up to a plant-based diet from keto.
Research from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that higher intake of plant-based fats actually resulted in a 16% lowered risk of dying from any cause. This is because you are most likely to consume more organic foods wrapped with the right nutrients needed by the body.
Plant-based foods are also packed with fiber. This way, you feel full for quite some time without adding extra calories. What’s even better is that as the weight comes off, you’ll also see significant and positive changes in your blood pressure, sugar, and cholesterol levels.
Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and those which are consumed in their natural forms also increase your intake of good carb and good fats. Plus, you do not need to really cut down on meat, you can still eat them in a minimal amount. The magic works in portions — add more of your fruits and veggies and expect a healthier, fitter you!
I would say that the plant-based diet is a healthier and sustainable diet option. Still, knowing what may be fitted for your goals and health condition is important when choosing a diet type. Consultation from an expert wouldn’t hurt.