is keto safe?

Is keto safe for everyone? Two people who should be wary…

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While we love keto and know it works wonders for so many of us, there are some people who should stay away from it, at least for a while. Like always, your doctor is the best person to consult regarding your health, diet changes and overall wellness. But to get you started on the “to keto or not to keto” journey, we’ve narrowed down on two instances when keto should be avoided.

pregnant couple keto

Pregnant or breastfeeding women

This is a tough issue, with varying opinions bouncing around the net. Here’s our two cents…

First of all, if you are growing a tiny human being in your body, or are nourishing a tiny human being with your body, leave keto alone for the time being. You deserve to indulge those crazy cravings (if you have them), and eat a bowl of pasta if you so wish to.  This doesn’t mean go crazy on the junk food, as you need all the nutrition you can get, but that also means eating a varied diet.

The most important thing is to feed yourself properly while pregnant and breastfeeding. This may mean lots of carbs to you, or it may mean a little. Whatever your body needs…have it. You can start or resume keto later on in life, but for now, eat a wide range of foods to nourish you and your bub. You’re tired and hungry enough without having to worry about macros! Healthy carbs such as lentils, beans and oats will give you the energy you need to be the superwoman Momma you are.

But what does science say on the matter? Well, again, there are varied reports. The truth is, the long-term effects of the ketogenic diet on an unborn baby are not solidly known. But there is evidence to show that constant high levels of ketones in the Mom’s system might have a negative impact on the baby’s development once they pass through the placenta and into baby’s system. High levels of ketones in the urine of a pregnant Mom are generally treated as a concern, so it makes sense to steer clear of keto.

You can cut out refined sugars and processed foods during pregnancy, absolutely, but your body and your baby might really need those healthy carbs to grow and prosper the best they can.

eating disorder

People with prior eating disorders

First of all, if you are survivor and thriver of an eating disorder, we support you! What a tough road to go down, and a hard mountain to climb toward recovery.

The thing about keto is that it’s undoubtedly restrictive…that’s the whole point behind the science of it…restrict the carbs, get the ketones. And with restriction does come a mental component. You have to have a very mindful and rather constant eye on your diet to ensure ketosis is stable. For anyone who has recently battled with obsessive thoughts regarding food, fear of calories or other food-related mental battles, keto is not the best choice. Getting to a place where all foods can be enjoyed without guilt or obsession is more important than any restrictive diet. Keto might perpetuate or rekindle an old habit of obsessive eating.

If you have health issues which may be helped by keto, but you have a history of disordered eating, see your doctor and/or therapist first as there might be other ways to handle your health while still eating the whole spectrum of macros.

Conclusion

Before starting keto, pay a visit to your doctor to discuss any health issues first. The ketogenic diet does alter your body quite drastically and can have a negative effect on some people (as great as keto is for others). When it comes to pregnancy, breast feeding and eating disorders, care and flexibility with our diet is really important, and not the time for restriction. Your health and wellbeing in all forms is of the utmost importance, so make sure your choices are well informed and healthy for you. We support you, keto or not.

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