A quick look at a large selection of unprocessed foods that are available to eat indicates that only a few of them are “Fats” based foods. They are for the most part avocado, coconut, olives as well as tree and ground nuts such as almonds, walnuts, peanuts etc. This is perhaps why our bodies rely more on carbohydrates for energy than fats. It is perhaps due to the limited availability of dietary fats in nature. Of course all sorts of oils and fats are available for purchase but these are mostly processed and therefore not readily available in nature. Furthermore, the foods that provide fats as their main energy source do not provide significant amounts of carbohydrates “Sugars”.
These elements seem to indicate that using fats for energy is an exceptional metabolic process and possibly occurs during winter seasons or drought due to the absence of fresh fruits and vegetables. It also indicates that it is more difficult to follow such a diet due to the limited amount of food options. Fats in our bodies are of various types of which there are essential fatty acids needed for cellular maintenance and functions, dietary fat molecules that we acquire from food directly and there are fat molecules that our body produces from excess sugar to store as energy for future use. This is stored in what is known as adipocytes which are grouped into adipose tissue organs.
Designing a fats based or “keto” diet plan needs to take into consideration the quality of fats consumed as well as to include as many carbohydrate neutral foods such as mushrooms, leafy greens and herbs and spices to ensure a balanced fiber, protein and micronutrient intake.
This type of a diet and in spite of its difficulty seems to provide many health benefits. It satisfies hunger in a very stable manner due to the fact that fats are energy dense having twice as many calories per gram as carbohydrates and proteins. It reduces hunger significantly and it also reduces stomach size. Research indicates that when our bodies enter what is known as ketosis there are numerous physiological and metabolic changes that take place inside our bodies.
Additional benefits attributed to a low-carb diet are improved levels of good cholesterol, reduced blood sugar and insulin levels, better mental concentration, faster metabolism, therapeutic for certain brain disorders as well as other health benefits.
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