Well, if you live in the 21st century, Keto Diet is not a new name for you. Keto diet is everywhere and everyone is either doing it or talking about it. The high fat, low carb diet has caught the fancy of all. Keto diet is one where one is expected to reach a state of Ketosis. Ketosis is a safe state of metabolism which is practiced by adults for health benefits. Keto diet allows you to have meat, fish, eggs, and dairy. A normal adult can be on a keto diet, but what about an expecting mother? Is it a bad idea at all?
Let us delve into this.
Pregnancy and Ketosis: The Controversy
When a woman is pregnant, she undergoes a lot of changes. Her body does so too. One is more aware of the choice they make. While Dr. Charles Seltzer, based in Philadelphia says that being on a keto diet while pregnant is not recommended, the trend seems to have caught up due to mixed reports.
- Some opine that being on a keto diet can cause Diabetic Ketoacidosis which is very harmful. It causes a dangerous acid balance in our body.
- Others recommend nutritional ketosis which is a natural state that uses fat for energy as compared to carbs.
A popular study has shown that it is safe for women to eat low carbs during pregnancy as long as they continue to eat certain, required foods for proper nutrition. But the efficacy and effectiveness of this can be debated. As many ob-gyn certified doctors say, a balanced diet is a key to a healthy baby growth during pregnancy.
Is Keto Diet Harmful to my baby?
Keto Diet is not harmful to the baby provided the other required vitamins and minerals are taken in too. Though dieting of any sort is not recommended during pregnancy, there have been instances of women having successful deliveries even while on a Keto Diet. Ketogenic pregnancy is gaining relevance due to –
- Increase in blood sugar levels
- Rising carbs
- Weight gain
What do Doctors recommend?
Doctors recommend a balanced diet for the safety of the mother and child. One that has fruits, vegetables, protein, and whole grain is recommended ideally by them. The use of supplements, high sugars, and fat food is also to be avoided.
- Most doctors certainly believe that being in ketosis constantly can be a source of concern. Ketosis as we know is not a normal state of the body.
- Some feel that since people cut down on processed food when they are on keto, nothing is wrong about it.
Some important points to be noted are-
- Don’t aim for weight loss. Keto diet is fine but during pregnancy, weight loss should not be your aim.
- Getting proper nutrition is of primordial importance. It will ensure health and growth in both baby and mother. It is vital to not let important minerals and nutrients slip by.
- Eat whole foods as they have more nutritional value and worth.
- Avoid refined and starchy, processed foods during pregnancy. It can harm your baby and hinder growth and development.
While a Keto diet has been eventful in changing the lives of many, it is recommended that pregnant and lactating women do not follow the diet. There are not many studies that examine how keto affects during pregnancy or a baby’s development. It would be the best idea to speak to your doctor or nutritionist to evaluate options. It is important to be mindful of what you eat when you are pregnant.