Article contributed by: Kathy Porter
Exclusive for DNXBar.com
Keto diets (short for ketogenic diets) have been growing in popularity. Unlike most fad diets, the high-fat, low-carb keto diet is based around what scientists refer to as ketosis — a metabolic state measured by ketone levels in the blood.
Keto diets promote weight loss through restricting carbs, which in turn creates a signal for body fat to be released and either burned or converted into ketones. Adventures of a Nurse’s introduction to what you can and can’t eat when on a keto diet suggests that meat, healthy fat, and leafy greens are great options. While the stop list includes grains, processed food, and starchy vegetables. This has resulted in many athletes and fitness fanatics swearing by the keto diet, as it has helped them achieve their goals much faster without the need for any painful dietary restrictions.
But aside from athletes and fitness buffs, healthcare professionals are also starting to get behind the keto diet as a way to promote healthy weight loss, help those with diabetes, and even lower the risk of cancer. This is especially crucial today, as the health statistics gathered by Maryville University reveal that chronic illnesses are on the rise. In fact, approximately 164 million Americans are projected to have some form of chronic illness by the year 2025, underscoring the need for everyone to adopt healthier lifestyles that can begin with considering the keto diet.
As the popularity of keto increases, so too does the market for keto-friendly products. There are a lot of keto diet aids and supplements that are now available — from meal plans and packaged food, to bars and snacks. But while these are undeniably convenient, not all of them are created equal. In order to get the best results, you need to make sure that you understand the labels and ingredients listed on the packet that work best for a keto diet.
Low-carb is the way to go
Just because an ingredient is natural doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s going to be good for your keto diet. Healthline recommends working with sweeteners like Stevia, which is not only natural, but also contains little to no calories or carbs. Avoid honey, maple syrup, and coconut sugar. Although these are natural and often touted as healthy sweeteners, they are actually high in carbohydrates and are counterproductive to a keto diet.
Simplicity is key
Another useful tip is to just check the label and make sure you can actually read and pronounce the ingredients. Keep an eye out for products like DNX Bars that have simple ingredients, so that you can enjoy a convenient snack without worrying about whether you might be undoing your diet.
Check which comes first
Speaking of ingredient lists; it might also help to check the order of the items in them. The FDA mandates that food manufacturers list their ingredients in terms of their weight, which means that if you see starch or sugar as part of the first five ingredients of a product, you might want to think twice before buying it. Sugar and starch mean heavy carb content, and not to mention a higher production of insulin (also known as the fat-storing hormone).
The keto diet is a great way to jumpstart your road to a better nutritious diet. As with any new health changes, you’ll get the best results when you accompany your new diet with exercise and check with registered, knowledgeable physicians beforehand. Although the keto diet might sound intimidating, with enough research and awareness you’ll find that it’s quite easy to implement to your daily routine.