No doubt you’ll be familiar with the Paleo diet, which in broad terms involves cutting out anything that couldn’t be hunted or gathered in the days of our cavemen ancestors – Paleo followers will often only eat 100% grass-fed meat products to ensure they are eating a completely natural diet.
Another slightly newer diet, supported by the 100% grass-fed philosophy, is the Ketogenic diet, where you avoid carbohydrates so your body is fuelled by ketones rather than glucose.
Similar in principle to something like the Atkins diet where carbs are stripped from your eating plan, the Ketogenic diet also restricts the intake of protein to ensure you reach a stage called “ketosis” where your body produces small particles known as ketones to fuel the brain and the body.
The idea behind reaching ketosis is to burn fat more effectively, as ketones are produced in the liver from fat. Essentially your body is run on fat, rather than glucose, ensuring your fat is burned quickly and efficiently. It is thought that a Ketogenic diet can help with health issues by reversing Type 2 Diabetes, can improve brain function and mental focus due to a continuous supply of ketones to the brain. It also prevents spikes in blood sugar that you get with a carb-laden diet, instead giving you a constant supply of fuel. Having complete access to your fat stores means that your physical endurance is also increased, and it is even thought that the Ketogenic diet can be used as a therapy for people suffering from epilepsy.
The types of foods you should focus on with a Ketogenic diet are natural fats including butter and oils, meats, fish and seafood, cheese, eggs, and vegetables that grow above ground (with root vegetables the carb level is far higher). Fruit is also restricted on this diet as it contains higher carb levels. The suggested level is to keep to under 50g of carbohydrate every day, and even better to keep to under 20g.
The Ketogenic might suit those who are looking to maximise their fitness alongside a good exercise regime, and there are few concerns for those who are young and for those with an already good level of health and fitness. Like any diet however, it’s always best to take advice from your GP before you embark on a new eating plan.
Largely, following a Ketogenic diet makes nutritional sense, with the recipes mostly made up of protein, high vegetable content and minimal carbs.
Here’s a great Keto recipe that uses 100% grass-fed meat:
Easy beef and courgette saute with garlic
2 tbsp coconut oil
300g 100% grass-fed beef stir fry steak strips
1 courgette cut into 1 inch long strips
Large handful coriander, chopped
3 cloves garlic, diced
2 tbsp gluten-free Tamari sauce
Heat the coconut oil in a frying pan on a high heat before adding the beef and sauteing for a few minutes.
When the beef has browned, add the courgette and cook down until soft.
Add the Tamari sauce, garlic and coriander and serve immediately.