The “keto” in a ketogenic diet comes from the fact that it allows the body to produce small fuel molecules called “ketones”.2 This is an alternative fuel source for the body, used when blood sugar (glucose) is in short supply.
Ketones are produced if you eat very few carbs (that are quickly broken down into blood sugar) and only moderate amounts of protein (excess protein can also be converted to blood sugar).
The benefits of a ketogenic diet are similar to those of other low-carb diets, but it appears to be more powerful than liberal low-carb diets.16 Think of keto as a super-charged low-carb diet, maximizing the benefits. However, it can also be harder to do, and it may increase the risk of side effects a bit.
- Lose weight
- Appetite control
- Control blood sugar and reverse type 2 diabetes
- Improved health markers
- Energy and mental performance
We have keto diet advice available in 40 languages, including our entire Diet Doctor site in Spanish and Swedish.
The liver produces ketones from fat. These ketones then serve as a fuel source throughout the body, especially for the brain.
The brain is a hungry organ that consumes lots of energy every day, and it can’t run on fat directly. It can only run on glucose… or ketones.34