A ketogenic diet, or keto diet, is well-known as a high-fat, moderate-protein and low-carb diet. Researches have revealed that a keto diet not only improves our mental health but also contributes to mental clarity. A keto diet involves higher levels of fat consumption and this benefits brain function. Our brains mainly need fatty acids omega-3 and omega-6 for proper functioning. During keto diets, a metabolic process named ketogenesis occurs to produce molecules called ketones, which serve as an alternative form of energy for your body to maintain normal brain cell metabolism. Read on to find out how the keto diet can improve your mental performance.
1. Helps you focus
The keto diet is not only proven to reduce inflammation of the brain, but also enhances mitochondrial function, and balances Dopamine, a type of neurotransmitter responsible for focus and relaxation. A keto diet makes you feel more focused as it allows you to get more mental energy from the existing glucose, when your brain is “notified” of the scarce food intake. Another theory regarding better focus is related to the production of ketones. These molecules made from keto diets feed our brains, empowering alertness and focus. Isn’t it a win-win situation when you get to eat clean and have your focus improved at the same time? Additionally, you can also satisfy your sweet tooth cravings and enjoy dessert thanks to the great availability of keto cakes, keto ice cream and other snacks.
2. Improves memory
Low-carb diets like keto diets are likely to improve your memory and preserve it in old age as a result of the ketosis process that occurs during such diets. Ketosis acts as a natural nootropic, or cognition and memory enhancer. Moreover, ketosis also helps to produce new mitochondria and increase adenosine triphosphate (ATP) (a substance that fuels metabolic processes) in your brain’s memory cells. Based on some findings from researchers, keto diet can produce more beta-hydroxybutyrate acid (BHB) in the body to enhance memory function. BHB is a chemical that provides energy when the consumption of carbohydrates or sugars is insufficient.
You may be wondering which keto food can fuel your brain the best. Take a look at the list below to find out more.
Most keto restaurants serve salmon in their menu. Salmon helps to ensure sufficient docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) in your body, which is essential for maintaining normal brain function in adults.
• Egg yolks
They contain B vitamins like B12 and folate that contribute to optimum brain function. A lack of such vitamins may cause depression.
Low in carbs, turmeric contains a medicinal ingredient named curcumin. There are studies suggesting that curcumin may lead to better memory as it promotes the production of a growth hormone called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF).
3. Improves brain function
Again, this is linked to the production of ketones. As an alternative fuel for the body, ketones produced from fatty acids are burned differently than glucose. This difference enables, your brain to benefit in the following ways:
• Prevent damage to brain cells
Ketones are a neuroprotective antioxidant that protects brain cells.
• Improves capacity of brain cells
When the capacity of brain cells is enhanced, risk of stroke and neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease is minimised. This can be achieved through a keto diet. Ketones produced from the diet increases mitochondrial efficiency and production.
Meanwhile, a study found that children with epilepsy on a keto diet tend to have better alertness and cognitive functioning, compared to those receiving traditional anti-epileptic pharmacotherapeutics. This showcases how keto diets generally improve brain function and help the brain to use its energy more efficiently.
At Ange Bakes Keto, we are passionate about helping individuals enjoy their keto diet. We run a keto cafe that complements a low-carb lifestyle. Contact us today to find out more.