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What is the Difference Between Keto and Low-carb?

Difference between atkins and keto – We can all see that the way we eat is definitely bringing a negative impact to our general health.


Mass production of processed food has taken nutrient quality out of the picture and replaced it with food quantity.


Difference Between Atkins and Keto


Because of this, a lot of health functions in our bodies has become compromised, leaving us vulnerable to disease.


The 3 biggest problems America faces from a health perspective are obesity, heart disease and type II diabetes. All of these are mainly linked to an unhealthy lifestyle, specifically regarding the diet we consume.


So what is it about the standard American diet that gives us such a hard time?


Well, not too long ago, all the blame was laid on fat. Fat got a pretty bad rap until recently when deeper scientific and nutritional discoveries unraveled the true culprit behind America’s ever-growing waistline.


This problem was carbohydrates.


It wasn’t so much the carbs themselves, just the type of carbs and the quantity.



Good Carbs vs Bad Carbs


Difference between atkins and keto you see, nowadays, we eat a lot of refined carbohydrates. These are carbs that have been isolated from their natural plant source and are left in their pure form.



Pastries and breads that use white flour as well as good old sugar are examples of refined carbs.



Difference Between Atkins and Keto



These carbs are very quickly absorbed into the blood causing a spike in blood glucose levels. This rapid spike isn't harmful once in a while, but over time, it can develop into a chronic resistance to the hormone insulin.



Insulin controls blood glucose and is also responsible for managing how carbs and fat are stored in the body.



When it doesn’t get to work properly due to resistance, it quickly leads to excess blood glucose and body fat storage.



What you want to get if carbs are on the menu is good carbs from whole, fiber rich foods. This means unrefined carbs that come with everything else their source provides, but mainly the fiber.



Fiber balances and moderates the absorption of sugar into the blood. This helps maintain healthy insulin function and is why such carbs are considered healthier than refined carbs.



Why Low Carbs?


So now you know that carbs can be healthy. You can totally enjoy cabs as long as they’re the right, healthy, fiber rich, unrefined version.


Difference Between Atkins and Keto


So why bother with a low carb diet?



When you go low carb, your body is forced to burn its fat reserves more frequently than it would with an abundance of fat.



This is perfect for weight loss.



Simply put, a low carb diet isn’t necessary for general health, but if you’re looking to speed up healthy weight loss, it's definitely a way to go.



Type of Low Carb Diets


When it comes to low carb living, there are a few ways to go about it.



The simplest way to do it is by moderately decreasing your overall carb intake and increasing your overall fat intake.



Difference Between Atkins and Keto



You can however, take it a step further and go into ketosis. Ketosis or keto is a state where your metabolism switches to a predominantly fat burning pathway instead of the usual carb burn.



This requires a drastic change in fat vs carb ratios.



This article is going to look at the difference between a general low carb diet and keto, hopefully helping you decide which is best for you.



4 Difference Between Atkins and Keto


Fat to Carb Ratio


As we’ve already mentioned, the fat to carb ratio is much higher with keto than it is with a regular low-carb diet like Atkins or Banting for example.



A keto diet aims to have macro values of



  • 70% fat
  • 5% carbs
  • 25% protein


Other general high fat, low carb diets have macro ratios of.



  • 45 – 65% fat
  • 20 – 35% carbs
  • 10 – 35% protein


A low carb diet macro ratio isn’t designed to eliminate the reliance on carbs, just to limit it to a minimum within regular metabolic function.



A keto diet however, aims to completely eliminate reliance on carbs, forcing the body to enter ketosis and change its operation from carbs to fat based.



Protein Ratio


The protein ratio difference between keto and low-carb also has some significance.



Difference between atkins and keto when on keto, you are relying on ketones, a group of organic molecules derived from fat. They work essentially the same as glucose when it comes to energy production.



Difference Between Atkins and Keto



The one thing to remember is your brain prefers glucose as energy for its cells. Even though ketones can cross the blood-brain barrier, your brain cells would still rather burn glucose.



In order to make up for this carb deficit, you brain signals for gluconeogenesis. This is a process where protein is converted to carbs.



Since keto has such a low carb ratio, the higher protein is handy in case gluconeogenesis is required.



A general low carb diet won’t have as much of a need for this since carb levels are sufficient for the brain’s demands.


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Metabolic Activity


The one glaring difference between low carb and keto is the metabolic process that takes place.



With a low carb diet, you are experiencing some keto activity due to the heightened fat burning potential as compensation for below average glucose stocks.



Under these conditions, your metabolism is still very much carb orientated.



However, on keto, you body is fully switched to burning fat as its main energy source. This complete pathway switch can have an impact on how you feel, which brings us to…



Side Effects


When it comes to side effects, a regular low carb diet won't have you worrying much, however, keto has a few potential nagging side effects.



These side effects are typically classed as “keto flu”. They include:


  • Fatigue
  • headaches
  • Muscle cramps
  • Mood swings
  • Muscle aches
  • Brain fog
  • Increased heart rate


These symptoms are due to the strain your system experiences from making the switch to ketosis.



You can prevent this by maintaining a healthy electrolyte balance, drinking plenty of water and regular exercise.




Difference between atkins and keto as you can see, keto and low-carb have a few fundamental differences in how they function and how they are planned.



At the end of the day, both are great ways to handle healthy weight loss if you use the right strategy and nutritional quality.



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Difference Between Atkins and Keto

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