You’ve taken the plunge to start a new diet—congratulations! Starting a new diet is difficult, especially one as restrictive as the ketogenic diet, which mandates eating a high-fat, low-carb regime. Studies suggest the keto diet is beneficial for people with Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes, and those on a keto diet can lose weight quickly.
As with any restrictive diet, it is important to make it as easy as possible to stay on track and reduce obstacles toward a healthier you.
However, you’ve run into an obstacle, and a somewhat embarrassing one at that. You’ve got the dreaded “keto breath.” How serious is it? Are the benefits of giving up carbs really worth it?
How Does a Diet Affect My Breath?
As we know, the body gets its energy from what we eat. Typically, our bodies burn carbs before moving on to fat, which is stored in case of starvation. The keto diet is unlike others because, by removing carbs from our diet, it forces the body to burn fat—and our stores of fat—first, putting the body into a biological state called ketosis. When our body burns fat, it releases chemicals called ketones through exhalation and urine. The ketones affect the smell.
How Does it Affect My Health?
The keto diet is great for those who want to lose weight fast, and the rules are simple: eat as much as you want, as long as your diet consists primarily of fats and as few carbs as you can handle. The keto diet also has plenty of benefits for those with type 2 diabetes, epilepsy and certain other ailments. It can also lower blood pressure and bad cholesterols. It is also great for the teeth, as cutting carbs means cutting sugar, leading cause for tooth decay.
However, let’s be honest: cutting carbs almost entirely is difficult, and most doctors do not recommend the keto diet in the long-term. The keto diet disallows fruits, some vegetables, grains, beans, alcohol and sweets, which makes it tough to follow. Plus, it is not uncommon to experience the “keto flu” for the first few days of the diet, as your body experiences a form of withdrawal. Gear up for moderate nausea, headaches and drowsiness, though this will go away soon. The keto breath may be unavoidable, however it can be mitigated with lots of water and by brushing your teeth often.
Is Giving Up Carbs Worth It?
Talk to your doctor before going keto, as with any diet, to ensure a low-carb diet is right for your body. However, the answer largely depends on your lifestyle. Ask yourself if you can commit to cutting carbs and eating chiefly fats. Remember, cutting carbs means giving up hamburgers, pasta and pizza.
Additionally, keto dieters are known to bounce back to their original weight quickly, as your body does not get as hungry on a low-carb diet. Many people feel over-hungry after coming off of the keto diet and end up overeating, gaining much of the weight back.
Talk To Us About Your Health
If you have questions about how a new diet will affect your health, particularly your oral health, a dentist can discuss options and make suggestions to help you be successful.
To schedule an appointment at My Hills Dentist in Baulkham Hills, please call (02) 9686 7375 today.