What’s the Scoop on the The Ketogenic Diet?

By Debbie Leonti

The foundation of CrossFit begins with nutrition.  What we fuel our bodies with on a daily basis has a tremendous impact on our performance in the gym and can have a direct impact on how we progress or regress in the sport.  There are so many “diets” out there to try.  Which one is best for YOU?  There is no right or wrong answer; it needs to be a plan that you feel is maintainable and sustainable for you and your needs.   With our Lifestyle Challenge right around the corner, I would like to give a little background information on the always trending “Ketogenic Diet.”  Several people have come up to me and inquired about this diet and asked if they should do it.  I am not opposed to this way of eating as I do feel that there is much research supporting the benefits of a Ketogenic Diet.  With almost everything in life, there is good and bad.  You have to weigh out the pros and cons of this way of eating to see if this is right for you.  Do not just jump into anything right away without doing the proper research to support your decision.  Many people have misconceptions with this diet and do not truly reap the benefits of it because it is not followed through the way it was intended to be.

With that being said, what exactly is the Ketogenic Diet?  Simply put, the ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carb eating plan that causes your body to burn fat, and not glucose, for energy.  The diet is made up of mostly fats (75 percent of your daily calories), some protein (20 percent) and a small amount of carbs (5 percent).  Some of the benefits of the diet include weight loss, reduced inflammation, and increased energy.

What foods can you eat on the Keto Diet?

Here is a friendly read about the foods you can have as well as foods to limit or avoid:

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/ketogenic-diet-foods#section7

Do your research and ask questions about it.  One of the things to keep in mind is that this lifestyle can be restrictive with certain foods.  I am always pushing for people to eat REAL FOOD and limit the processed food that we don’t necessarily need.  However, we are all human and we all have things we enjoy.  With anything we do, it has to be a balance.  What are your goals?  What do you plan on accomplishing if you join in on the NECF Lifestyle Challenge?  If you are curious about Keto and want to try it to see if this lifestyle would work for you, we will have a “Keto Option.”  Remember, it has to be something that you want to do and it has to be something that you give a fair shot.  It takes a minimum of 22 days to form a habit.  This way of eating may instill some great habits that will help you become better aware of the importance of nutrition going forward.

The challenge begins October 1st.  I hope to see most of you signed up and ready to partake in learning how to fuel your body.  Some of you may really enjoy the Ketogenic Lifestyle, and I am anxious to help guide you!  It takes time and a lot of trial and error for nutrition.  With anything you do, the more consistent you follow something, the better success you will have.  See you all at NECF!