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Keto and Exercise: Does a ketogenic diet and exercise work?
Keto and Exercise – Do Ketogenic Diet and Exercise go Together?
Should I exercise and/or workout on a ketogenic diet?
The keto diet is super popular and it is very effective for weight loss.
Not only that, it has been shown to help a myriad of health issues when done properly under supervision of a doctor.
With that said, whether or not you should workout if you are on a keto diet is a question that comes up often.
Whenever I have counted carbs and tried to get into the realm of ketosis (or even close) I have felt sluggish and had very low energy.
Personally, I did not want to workout; I wanted to sleep.
Knowing full well that everyone is different, I still stand by the idea that diets are a very individual thing.
This goes for the keto diet as well and you can read more about our thoughts on that right here.
Yes and No.
Back to the question on keto and exercise-the answer is both yes and no.
You would be hard pressed to find much material out there backing the idea that exercising is bad for you.
However, in the beginning, the recommendation is not to exercise.
You will likely experience some weakness and keto flu symptoms in the first weeks.
These are common symptoms and we encourage you to read the post that discusses ways to combat the side effects of a keto diet.
Luckily, these do not last for too long and many people come out the other side feeling quite well.
This is because when you start a keto diet, it is highly likely that you’ll experience some weakness and keto flu symptoms.
You would be well-served to get through the initial period without putting extra stress on yourself.
You can incorporate exercise into your life once your body is used to being in ketosis.
If the above-mentioned answer is still unsatisfactory, it is best to read this whole article.
But first as a review:
What is Keto Diet?
It is a high-fat diet (also famously known as very low carb diet) and it comprises low carbohydrates and adequate protein.
A keto diet burns the stored fats in the body to produce energy that is required to do daily tasks.
In other words, the body turns into a fat burning machine.
Keto diet has produced satisfactory weight loss and beneficial health results.
However, some concerns have been shown over this diet again you can read more about these concerns in this article.
Ketogenic Diet and Exercise
What makes the keto diet so appealing? Well, you get to lose fat without having to exercise/workout much.
This means that you get to lose excessive fat from your body without a lot of physical movement (if you choose to be on the lazy side that is).
But there are people like me who feel stir crazy if they do not move much.
These are people who want to workout while they are on a keto diet.
So, the question arises, once again, is it realistic to exercise and workout while on a keto diet?
Let’s find that out.
Drastic Dietary Changes
According to a certified doctor of natural medicine, chiropractic and clinical nutrition,
Dr. Josh Axe, DNM, DC, CNS, when no other diet is effective, the ketogenic diet works.
The clinical nutritionist says that the ketogenic diet is great at producing desired results because a person makes drastic changes in the macronutrient distribution of his/her diet.
There have been researchers that strongly suggest you can maintain or even enhance your exercise performance while you are in ketosis. How is it possible?
Well, there is no denying that carbs play a pivotal role in the muscle growth and it is because they stimulate the release of insulin and help in restoring glycogen in the muscles.
The jury is still out according to some but there is research indicating that keto diet enhances athletes’ performances.
So, being fat burning machines can actually help some athletes in maintaining muscle mass while also enabling them to lose fat .
See this review of Keto fit for more information.
Why Keto and Exercise can be a good combo
There is no denying that exercise and workouts are extremely beneficial to human health. And it is beneficial even if you are on a keto diet.
According to the research, exercise and workouts are beneficial in the following ways:
Exercise Enhances Insulin Sensitivity in the Body
We tend to become inactive with age because our insulin sensitivity decreases with time.
This means that the more inactive we are, the more are the chances of elevated levels of body glucose.
Hence, higher levels of insulin secretion results in excess body fat.
Unfortunately, it can lead to metabolic syndrome, pre-diabetes, and eventually diabetes.
In today’s world, older people are not the only ones who have insulin sensitivity problems.
Younger people are facing these issues as well.
So, researchers have found that exercise, especially weight-bearing, helps in enhancing the efficiency of insulin in response to blood glucose.
When a person is following a ketogenic diet, the blood glucose levels in the body starts to lower as well.
This is where exercise helps the body in better handling small bursts of glucose.
Amplifies Fat Burning
Inarguably, the ketogenic diet has a noticeable effect on the fat metabolism and that is why it helps a lot in burning fat at a much faster rate.
When there is the absence of carbohydrates, the insulin activity decreases as well.
Fat burning slows down whenever the insulin levels in the body get high and as a result, fat starts getting stored.
Hence, the body starts using carbohydrates for energy when you start exercising with high levels of insulin in the body.
On the contrary:
On the contrary, your body starts using the stored fat in the body for energy if the insulin levels are low.
You have to comprehend the fact that we have way more stored fat in the body and this means that you should always have adequate energy during workout or exercise because your body is efficiently burning fat for energy.
We know that fat is slow burning more steady source of energy for us.
Hence it may be fair to say that exercise is more effective when you are on a keto diet and your body is in a state of ketosis.
Your body starts burning ketones or fat, rather than glycogen.
Exercise Elevates Muscle Growth
You might be wondering why muscle gain is important. Well, you need to gain more muscles in order to burn more fat in the body.
This means that the more muscle you have, the more fat you can burn.
Therefore, you may want to keep on exercising to ensure that muscle mass is maintained.
The Bottom Line for You
All in all, it can be said that if you really want to get the maximum benefit from your ketogenic diet and lifestyle, then it is imperative for you to embrace exercise and keep working out.
The combination of keto and exercise can considerably enhance your insulin sensitivity and your body composition.
In addition, your mental health may also improve as result of adding some exercise and fresh air into your life.
So, the answer to your question about whether you should exercise or workout on a ketogenic diet is an ultimate YES!
(the ketogenic diet and exercise go well together once you're adjusted)
Why no check out our post on the most effective fat burning exercises next?
Keto and Exercise/Ketogenic Diet and Exercise: THE INFORMATION PROVIDED IN THIS WEBSITE IS FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES. IT IS BASED ON MY OWN PERSONAL EXPERIENCES AND OPINIONS. I AM NOT A MEDICAL DOCTOR AND WHAT IS WRITTEN SHOULD NOT BE USED TO DIAGNOSE OR TREAT ANY DISEASE OR ILLNESS. THE PRODUCT LINKS ARE NOT MEANT TO BE CONSTRUED AS MEDICATIONS OR TREATMENTS AND YOU SHOULD CONSULT YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE TAKING ANY SUPPLEMENTS, HERBAL PRODUCTS, OR STARTING EXERCISE PROGRAMS.
Ketogenic Diet and Exercise