Another Reason Why You Should do Healthy Keto

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 01/13/2024

Many people following a high-fat diet overlook the importance of doing Healthy Keto®.

Learn why Healthy Keto is crucial to promote optimal nutrition while burning fat and discover how you can boost nutrient absorption to maximize keto's amazing health benefits.

The Nutrient Absorption Benefits of Healthy Keto

One significant advantage of the healthy keto diet is its ability to enhance nutrient absorption.

This low-carb, high-fat dietary approach, combined with intermittent fasting, not only promotes weight loss and metabolic health but it also helps to prevent and even reverse insulin resistance, which can impair nutrient absorption.

Insulin Resistance and Its Impact on Nutrient Absorption

When cells become insensitive to the effects of insulin, a hormone that controls blood sugar levels, it can lead to an increase in insulin requirements and eventually result in health issues such as type 2 diabetes.

When this happens, your body requires more insulin to keep blood glucose levels in check. Over time, this can lead to type 2 diabetes and other health complications.

By reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat, you can put your body into a metabolic state known as ketosis. In this state, your body becomes incredibly efficient at burning fat for energy instead of carbohydrates.

Intermittent fasting on a notepad

How Intermittent Fasting Complements Healthy Keto

In addition to improving insulin sensitivity through a ketogenic diet, intermittent fasting can further boost keto's health benefits. During fasting, our bodies are forced into using stored fats for energy - thus promoting weight loss.

Moreover, studies have shown that intermittent fasting may also increase human growth hormone (HGH) production, aiding cellular repair processes, including digestion and absorption.

  • Fat Burning: Both keto diets and intermittent fasting promote fat burning by forcing the body into ketosis, using stored fats for energy rather than relying on glucose from carbs.

  • Hormone Regulation: Intermittent fasting has been shown to regulate hormones such as HGH, which play an essential role in metabolism and overall health.

  • Digestion Improvement: Fasting gives digestive organs rest, allowing them time to heal or regenerate, improving digestion over time.

Role of Vitamin D and Calcium in a Healthy Keto Diet

A healthy keto diet focuses on essential nutrients like vitamin D and calcium, crucial for maintaining bone strength and immune function.

Exploring the Relationship Between Vitamin D Deficiency and Calcium Levels

Vitamin D, also known as the "sunshine vitamin," is produced naturally by our bodies when exposed to sunlight. Fatty fish, cheese, egg yolks, and dairy products with added vitamins are sources of the "sunshine vitamin," Vitamin D.

However, many people still suffer from vitamin D deficiency, which can affect calcium absorption. Without sufficient vitamin D, your body may only absorb 10-15% of dietary calcium, far less than you need for optimal health.

A well-planned ketogenic diet can help maintain adequate levels of these vital nutrients. Foods high in healthy fats - like avocados and salmon - are not just great sources of necessary macronutrients but also rich in vitamins, including vitamin D.

  • Fatty Fish: Salmon and mackerel are excellent natural sources of vitamin D.

  • Cheese: Besides being deliciously satisfying, cheese contains small amounts of this critical nutrient, too.

  • Egg Yolks: Eggs are an easy way to incorporate more vitamins into your meals without straying from your low-carb plan.

In addition to incorporating these foods into your meal plans, consider spending some time outdoors each day. Natural sunlight exposure helps boost vitamin D synthesis, further supporting calcium absorption.

Addressing Phytate Consumption Through a Healthy Keto Diet

If you're not following a healthy keto regimen, chances are high that your phytate consumption could be elevated. Found commonly in whole grains, phytates can block vital minerals such as calcium, zinc, and iron, leading to deficiencies.

Identifying Foods High in Phytates and Their Effect on Mineral Absorption

Phytates, commonly found in whole grains and associated with anti-nutrient properties, can bind to minerals like calcium and zinc before absorption.

Due to their elevated phytate content, these seemingly nutritious foods can impede your body's capacity for absorbing critical minerals.

This interference occurs because phytic acid binds with minerals like calcium and zinc in the digestive tract before they can be absorbed into the bloodstream.

Foods known for their high levels of phytic acid include:

  • Lentils

  • Kidney beans

  • Soybeans

  • Brown rice

  • Oats

The good news is that adopting a ketogenic diet naturally reduces the intake of these foods since it emphasizes low-carb options instead.

How To Minimize Dietary Phytate Intake

To mitigate the effects of dietary phytates on mineral absorption while still enjoying nutrient-dense foods, consider incorporating strategies such as soaking or sprouting seeds and nuts before consuming them.

These methods help break down some phytic acid content, making nutrients more bioavailable. In addition to this approach, switching to a healthier ketogenic lifestyle also helps.

The ketogenic diet focuses primarily on fats along with moderate protein intake, significantly reducing carbohydrate consumption, which includes grain-based products rich in dietary phytates.

Hormonal Imbalances & Calcium Absorption

Our bodies are complex systems, with various factors influencing nutrient absorption. Hormonal balance is one such factor. Hormonal imbalances can affect the absorption of minerals like calcium, which is crucial for bone health and nerve impulses.

During menopause, hormone levels can vary significantly - particularly a decrease in estrogen - which may lead to decreased mineral uptake, such as calcium.

Postmenopausal women tend to have lower bone density due to reduced calcium absorption, making them more susceptible to osteoporosis.

Balancing Hormones For Improved Mineral Absorption

The good news? Adopting a healthy ketogenic lifestyle may help. The Healthy Keto Diet focuses on consuming nutrient-dense foods rich in vitamins and minerals necessary for optimal body function.

  • Foods high in healthy fats (like avocados) support hormone production by providing the necessary building blocks for hormones.

  • Maintaining stable blood sugar levels through low-carb intake helps prevent insulin spikes, which could disrupt other hormone balances.

  • Plenty of leafy greens provide an excellent source of calcium without the risk associated with dairy consumption.

Woman behind a table with keto-friendly foods

Promoting Digestive Health With Healthy Keto

A ketogenic diet can help optimize digestion and nutrient absorption, which in turn can positively impact stomach acid production.

It can naturally address conditions that lead to low stomach acid or poor bile production, which can impede your body's ability to extract nutrition from food.

How Low Stomach Acid Can Impede Nutrient Absorption

It could be that low stomach acid levels are behind the bloating, heartburn, or indigestion after meals. Contrary to the common notion, these signs and symptoms may be due to an inadequate amount of stomach acid instead of too much.

Insufficient HCL makes it difficult for your body to break down proteins and absorb essential minerals like calcium and iron effectively.

  • Bloating: When there isn't enough HCL present in the gut, undigested food begins fermenting, causing gas buildup and leading to bloating.

  • Heartburn: Similarly, without sufficient acidity, partially digested food can reflux back up into the esophagus, causing discomfort.

  • Nutrient Deficiencies: Over time, inadequate protein breakdown due to lack of proper acidity results in deficient vital minerals and vitamins.

High-Carb Vs. Healthy Ketogenic Diets

A diet abundant in refined carbs can lead to a heightened need for vitamins B1 and C. This is because refining strips away much of their nutritional value, leaving you with empty calories that do little to nourish your body.

Why Does Consuming Refined Carbs Increase Our Need For Vitamins?

The more processed carbohydrates you take in, the harder your body has to work to break them down. This increased metabolic activity requires additional nutrients for support - hence the heightened need for vitamins such as B1 (thiamine) and C (ascorbic acid).

Thiamine is crucial in converting food into energy, while ascorbic acid helps protect cells from damage.

Transitioning From Carb-heavy Meals To Balanced Ketogenic Plates

A healthy ketogenic lifestyle is a diet focused on low-carb, high-fat foods that promote balanced nutrition without overloading your system with unnecessary sugars.

By reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with healthy fats, the keto diet puts your body into a metabolic state known as ketosis, where fat becomes its primary fuel source instead of glucose derived from carbohydrates.

This helps maintain steady blood sugar levels and reduces insulin resistance, promoting better nutrient absorption. To make transitioning easier, start by gradually reducing your carb intake while simultaneously increasing healthy fats.

Incorporate healthy fats into your diet, such as avocados, nuts/seeds, and fatty fish, and include plenty of green leafy vegetables.

Conclusion

Healthy Keto is excellent for weight loss and promotes overall health. A high-fat diet can lower the risk of insulin resistance, help balance hormonal levels, and promote digestive health.

Healthy Keto Guide for Beginner

FREE Keto Diet Plan