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The Hidden Dangers of the Keto Diet
The Keto Diet has quickly become the most popular eating choice among dieters trying to lose weight the quick, easy, and hopefully healthy way. The low-carb, high-fat diet encourages you to eat a lot of rich, fatty foods while cutting back on carbs, promoting the elimination of fat rather than the consumption and use of carbs. While many people have seen good weight loss results, there have been other less desirable outcomes. In fact, there are even some hidden dangers of the Keto Diet you might not have known about…
Reduced Athletic Performance
Considering your body uses primarily carbohydrates as a quick-acting energy source to power your muscles while you exercise, it’s no wonder that cutting carbs from your diet may lead to reduce athletic performance. Studies have indicated that the Keto Diet can lead to decreased performance, particularly on high-intensity running and cycling—anything that has to do with cardiovascular endurance. Ketosis encourages a more acidic state in your body, which can prevent it from reaching peak performance.
Higher Risk of Malnutrition
Specifically, the vitamins and minerals that are found primarily in carbohydrate-rich fruits, vegetables, legumes, and grains. Cutting to fewer than 50 grams of carbs per day is not easy, especially when you consider that even fruits and vegetables contain carbs. If you eliminate them from your diet along with high-carb grains, you could be at serious risk of malnutrition. Your body needs vitamins and minerals in order to function, and most of those micronutrients are derived from fruits and veggies. Add to that the reduce fiber intake, and you could be putting your body at serious risk of malnutrition as a result of the Keto Diet.
Yes, this is a very real problem when coming OFF the Keto Diet. While you’re strict with your food intake, you’ll find it’s much easier to keep a lid on your weight gain. But once you stop and you relax your diet a bit, you may struggle to keep off all the weight you’ve lost over the course of the Keto Diet. Eventually, it’s possible you’ll end up right back where you started, all because of how hard it is to keep regulating your food intake once you’re no longer dieting. This can lead to health problems, low metabolism, and even raise your risk of early death.
Higher Chronic Disease Risk
There is a very real chance that eating more fat in your diet can lead to higher risk of chronic disease. Low-carb diets have been linked to atrial fibrillation, a cardiovascular problem that can be serious, if not life-threatening. Low-carb, high-fat diets have also been linked to higher mortality rates from cancer, as well as higher early mortality rates. While most of this research is purely observational and only has a small amount of evidence to back it up, it’s clear that a high-fat, low-carb diet does pose potentially serious health risks over the long term. It’s important that you consider it a short-term solution to your weight loss rather than relying on it for the rest of your life.
Damaged Blood Vessels
Studies have found that high-sugar foods can actually cause blood vessel damage to those who are on low-carb, high-fat diets. This is because a high-sugar food is rich in glucose, which can flood the body with blood sugar, a surge for which the blood vessels are unprepared thanks to so many weeks and months of low-carb dieting. This is one of the dangers of “cheating” on the Keto Diet, and something to be aware of the next time you consider eating carbs.