THE MEDITERRANEAN VS. THE KETO DIET
Grilled salmon and greens with olive oil is an example of a meal that meets the criteria of both the Mediterranean and Ketogenic Diets.
Two common diets being promoted for health and weight loss recently are the Mediterranean and the Keto (or Ketogenic) Diets. But which one should you choose? Or should you choose either?
The Mediterranean Diet
The Mediterranean Diet improves heart health, reduces blood pressure, and reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease. It is also effective for eliminating excess body fat.
The Mediterranean diet focuses on eating vegetables and fruit, whole grains, plant based proteins, fish and poultry, olive oil, nuts and seeds. It limits processed foods, red meat, sugars and sweets.
Research on the Mediterranean diet has shown a significant reduction of major cardiovascular events such as strokes and heart attacks. Healthy loss of extra body fat is also common when switching from a traditional western diet to a Mediterranean style of eating.
The Ketogenic Diet
The Ketogenic Diet is a high fat, low carb, moderate protein diet. Research shows significant improvement in patients with brain injury and seizure disorders who adopt the keto diet.
It is also gaining popularity as a weight-loss diet or as a diet for controlling blood sugar levels.
In order for the Keto diet to work, the body must enter ketosis. Ketosis is a state in which body fat is being burned for fuel. It occurs naturally in the body when eating a very low carbohydrate, high-fat diet.
Because of the high amount of fat, it is important to choose higher quality fat sources. Examples include avocados, olive oil, and nut butters. These are the same high quality fats used in the Mediterranean Diet.
The Keto diet often results in rapid weight loss without accompanying feelings of hunger. However, it can be a difficult diet to follow because:
the keto diet is restrictive (no more bread, rice, pasta, quinoa, potatoes, carrots, peas, fruit, etc)
it is difficult to sustain long-term
rebound weight gain when stopping the diet is common
Which is Right for You?
Curious which diet might be right for you? There is a seemingly never-ending supply of information about both diets. But figuring out which is right for you can still pose a challenge.
If you’re curious, confused, or interested in trying the Mediterranean Diet or the Keto Diet, I can help!
Get on the fast track to achieving your goals with the perspective and accountability of a Registered Dietitian today.