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Keto Diet vs. Fasting: Which is Best For You?

Excess weight is a common issue that many adults face. According to the CDC, nearly half of adults in the United States are obese. The reason that being overweight or obese is such a problem really has nothing to do with appearance. Being overweight opens up the doors for all kinds of disease-associated risks. This excess weight increases your chances of developing things like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, cancer, and more. 

To make matters even worse, obesity puts you at a higher risk of death. 

As the obesity rates in the United States have increased, so have diet trends. Many of those diets promise results that seem too good to be true, and for some they are. Some of those diets are also dangerous and pose a different set of risks than obesity does. 

However, not all diets are bad. Though diet trends come and go, there are a few that have hung on past the phase of craze and seem like they are here to stay. 

Two of those diets are the keto diet and the concept of fasting. Though it may seem like the keto diet has only been on the scene for a few years, it’s actually been around since the 1920s. And the concept of fasting has been around since 500 BC, potentially even earlier. 

If you are wanting to lose weight and get yourself to a safe and healthy place, read on to learn more about both the keto diet and fasting to see which one might work best for you. 

What is the keto diet?

The pros and cons of the keto diet

This low-carb diet is officially called the ketogenic diet and has been around since the 1920s. It was used in its early days as a way to help treat children suffering from epilepsy, and it saw great success. 

The keto diet has recently had a major surge in popularity and many people have been turning to it in order to solve their weight issues, as well as disease-related issues. Countless studies have been done showing that cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy found that a keto diet greatly improved the tumor response and may even help suppress solid cancers. 

So let’s get to the thick of it. 

When on the keto diet, at least 70% of your calories come from fat, 10-20% of your calories come from protein, and the last 5-10% come from carbohydrates. It is an extreme, low-carb diet that can offer extreme results. 

How does the keto diet work?

Because you severely limit the number of carbohydrates you consume on a keto diet, your body has no choice but to use fat as its fuel source instead of the glucose it typically uses. 

This change creates compounds in the body called ketones, which are then, in turn, used by the cells in your body to make energy. And, this puts you in a state referred to as ketosis. 

You can expect your body to reach this optimal ketosis state as soon as 2 days after starting the diet or up to 2 weeks after beginning it. The time difference depends on what your diet looked like before starting keto as well as how much physical activity you partake in. 

What are the benefits of the keto diet?

The most glaring benefit of this diet is weight loss, which is to be expected when you cut back the number of carbohydrates you consume. However, other diets that cut back carbohydrates don’t ensure that protein levels are left high enough to maintain muscle mass, which the keto diet makes sure stays solid. 

There are other benefits you can reap from doing the keto diet. These include:

  • Fat loss
  • Lower inflammation
  • Improvement in insulin sensitivity 
  • Reduced appetite
  • Lower blood pressure and cholesterol
  • Brain health

What are the risks of the keto diet?

While the keto diet encourages eating healthy foods, it isn’t a low-fat diet. When you increase your fat intake, you run the risk of raising your total cholesterol if you have too much saturated fat in your diet. 

Also, people often find it hard to stick with the keto diet for long because of the food restrictions regarding what they can and cannot eat. While this is not really a risk, it is a downside and can cause a lower chance of success.

What is fasting?

intermittent fasting weight loss

You likely are familiar with the idea of fasting, but we will do a quick recap. Fasting is the idea of abstaining from eating food. Fasting has been around since 500 B.C. as a way to treat epilepsy and has been used since then to cure all kinds of health issues. 

How does fasting work? 

Some fasting (such as intermittent fasting) lasts just a few hours, while other types of fasting (such as alternate-day fasting) mean you fast one day, eat one day, fast one day, etc. 

There are a number of different fasting routes to take, and the available options open it up to pretty much everybody because they can find something that works best for their schedule and lifestyle. 

What are the benefits of fasting?

Fasting can lead to healthy weight loss, but there are a number of other benefits as well. 

By fasting, you may be able to:

  • Improve insulin resistance
  • Improve glucose metabolism
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Lower the risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes

What are the risks of fasting?

There aren’t a whole lot of risks involved with fasting. It is important that you talk with a doctor before implementing fasting into your life, however, because some people should steer clear of this approach to dieting (pregnant women, people with diabetes, and others). 

Fasting can also be difficult for people because removing or restricting food – even temporarily – can be challenging. To alleviate the hunger pangs that are associated with a fasting lifestyle, make sure you drink plenty of water and stay hydrated. There are also products on the market like Fast Bars that allow you to fast with food because they’re designed to keep your body in a fasting state even after ingesting them. If you’re worried fasting might be too difficult but still want to try it, this might be the solution for you. 

Which is better: the keto diet or fasting?

Keto vs. fasting

The answer to this question is more of a personal one than a scientific one because both diets promote weight loss and offer many of the same additional benefits. 

However, some may find that fasting is easier because, on the days of feasting, you’re not limited to the foods you can eat. It can be difficult to have such a restricted diet every day as is required for the keto diet. On the contrary, some people also find that they see results quicker with the keto diet than they do with fasting, but that may not be the case for everyone.

When it comes down to it, you need to take into account your lifestyle and your goals and move forward from there. Regardless of which diet you do or don’t choose, make sure you get active and eat healthy meals. Also, check with your doctor if you have any concerns. They’re the best source of information and can help you make informed decisions. 

Want to give intermittent fasting a try? Take a look at Prime Women’s PLATE program. Now available in an app on Apple or Android with reminders to keep you on track.

If you’re worried about being hungry while intermittent fasting, try our program for 5-day ProLon fasting with food, or you can use FastBar to avoid temptation and help you find success! 

Prolon coupon

Fast Bar coupon

This article is for informational purposes only, is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease, and is not a substitute for medical advice.

Read Next:

Intermittent Fasting Mistakes Beginners Make — And How to Avoid Them!

Keto vs Paleo: What You Need to Know

What ACTUALLY Happens To Your Body During a Fast

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