Written by Jayden Borg
Being constantly bombarded with body images of what we should look like
on advertisements, social media and television, consumers aren’t taking everything
the media is feeding them with a pinch of salt and are failing to stop for a
moment in order to think and reflect. Everything has a purpose in life and the
truth of the matter is that there is no one size that fits all.
Many consumers fall in the media’s entrapment and often times fail to
realise that their favourite celebrity that they see promoting a certain
product is actually getting paid to do so and does not necessarily mean that
they follow that diet or take that product being advertised. It is all a
scheme, a web of enmeshment in order to increase marketing sales.
The latest craze diet is the Keto diet, one through which the user
alters his body’s source of energy from glucose which is formed when ingesting
carbohydrates to utilising stored fat as a source of energy. This is done by
limiting carbohydrates to no more than 50g each day, the equivalent of not even
2 apples in a day! Additionally, to compensate, the user ingests foods that are
primarily high in fat.
Being an athlete myself, I must stress that the Keto diet is unfitting for the hardcore athlete and more fitting to a sedentary lifestyle. The reason is that sports such as athletics, bodybuilding, boxing, football are glycogen type sports where the main source of energy needs to be glucose and hence carbohydrates. If carbohydrates are missing, the athlete will suffer lethargy, weak performance and muscle flatness.
In a study published by cardiologist and nutrition researcher at Brigham
and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Sara Siedelmann, it was concluded that banning
entire food groups, such as carbohydrates when doing keto, and thinking you can
cheat your way into good health might work for a while, but it could also send
you into an early grave.
It must be stated that keto is one of the most restrictive diets that
could have harmful long-term consequences. In addition to these consequences, a
diet such as keto is hard to follow as well mainly due to the restrictive list
of foods available and also being socially challenging. Even a reliable source
such as Dr. Josh Axe, who is an advocate of the keto diet says that it’s not a
diet that should be followed for more than a few months at a time.
On the other hand, as stated earlier, everything has a purpose and the
Keto diet can definitely have its place and benefits especially in short term
rapid weight loss and in medical treatment. It can help fight cancer by
blocking cancer’s favourite energy source which is glucose (carbohydrates),
treat Alzheimer’s disease and is also beneficial for diabetics. In the past, it
has also helped children who were diagnosed with epilepsy.
It cannot be stressed enough that time and time again, research and
studies are showing that the body needs everything in moderation. So make sure
that in your plate you include protein sources such as eggs, salmon or chicken
for cell and muscle building, carbohydrates such as oatmeal, rice, and potatoes
for energy and healthy fats such as extra virgin olive oil, almonds and
avocados for hormone production. Don’t forget your green vegetables as well!