Most people understand that we should get most of our nutrients (including vitamins and minerals) from our daily food intake. However, when we restrict our food as much as we do in a keto diet, it becomes increasingly difficult to get the vitamins that we need for a healthy body. Note that we are not suggesting that you could not get your vitamins from your daily food intake – but it might be exceedingly difficult to do so. Do you really need keto vitamins and if you do, what is the importance of them in your daily diet?
A bit more about the keto diet
Science has demonstrated that using a ketogenic diet can be an effective way to optimize your cholesterol, control your insulin resistance, and lower your overall blood sugar. One question we do get from people is whether keto vitamins can help optimize your carbohydrate-restricted diet.
While research shows that a keto diet can be healthy (if it is done correctly), we must be mindful of specific vitamin and mineral deficiencies. By going over a few of the most common problems you are going to see why these vitamins matter and what we need to know to boost our weight loss journey.
The reason to supplement with keto vitamins
Why do so many healthcare professionals and fitness enthusiasts recommend that you supplement your daily diet wit keto vitamins when you follow a ketogenic diet? What is the essence of these mineral supplements? When we compare the ketogenic diet to many other diets that are available, it is undoubtedly unique. This is because on a keto diet, you change the way your body works. The work our body processes fatty acids after cutting out carb foods is drastic. These are a few of the different changes:
- A low carb diet takes away the default primary source of energy for our body;
- The default energy source that we use and get from carb foods is glucose from carbs;
- Your body starts to shift and begins its search for an alternate energy source;
- Our body starts ketogenesis, both the liver and gallbladder release stored fats. These fats (along fat that you intake through diet) are turned into the body’s alternate energy fuel – ketones.
- Your body turns into a fat-fueled machine rather than a carb-fueled machine
As previously mentioned, this changes the way that our body works. Our body is going to need to adjust to such a radical change. If you have keto flu (which is often caused by a lack of vitamins and minerals as people cut out carb foods) keto vitamins can help fill any nutritional gaps of your ketogenic diet. We are going to take about a few of the different supplements to consider.
There are three types of omega-3 fatty acids that our body needs: EPA, DHA and ALA. When we take fish oil, we get DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid). Those are two fatty acids we only get through supplementation or diet. The other type, ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), can be found in chia seeds, vegetable oils, or walnuts.
Our body can convert ALA into DHA and EPA, but unfortunately the rate at which the conversion happens is low. Therefore, a supplement with fish oil is always beneficial. Unless you eat daily portions of well-sourced, fatty mackerel, salmon, and sardines in combination with loads of leafy green vegetables you will likely need to supplement your omega-3.
Importance of omega-3
There are various reasons why you should have omega-3 in your system, including the different benefits for your brain and heart health. Other benefits include
- Increase the lowering of triglycerides than a normal ketogenic diet can, this will help lower your overall BMI, body fat, and LDL cholesterol;
- Help ease symptoms of depression;
- Fight inflammation in the body.
One of the most prominent and most important keto vitamins is vitamin D: it acts as a hormone and nutrient in our body. Because it is hard to get enough from food alone, many food products are already fortified with vitamin D. When you take vitamin D, it helps you absorb magnesium, calcium, and several other minerals. You also need it to support your immune system, bone density, and maintaining strength and muscle growth,
Despite the importance of vitamin D, many people across the globe are low in vitamin D. And that is not including those who follow the keto diet. You are at a higher risk of deficiency because of the restrictive nature of foods on the ketogenic diet. Therefore, supplementation is a great idea.
Many people are deficient in magnesium, but those who eat a low-carb diet are more prone to being deficient. If you want to know for sure that you have a deficient in magnesium, the only way to do so is by having a blood test. However, if you believe that you might have magnesium deficiency, both fatigue and muscle cramps are common signs. Magnesium can help with a normal muscle function, nerve function, immunity, and normal heart rhythm. It also works with calcium to keep our bones strong.
In order to facilitate healthy muscle and nerve function, our bodies need a healthy balance of sodium. Sodium can retain water, making it important to keep our electrolytes balanced. Even though the vast majority of diets are going to suggest that you need less sodium, you might need more when you are on a keto diet because you are losing a great deal of sodium with the water loss you have at the start of your diet. That does not mean that you need to go overboard, but certainly means that you should have a healthy sodium intake.
You can eat sodium-rich foods such as eggs or red meats or opt for adding salt to your food or drinks. Given that sodium does play an important role in our overall blood pressure, we should be careful not to use too much at once.
There are a number of important factors that potassium plays an important role in. Including being able to have a regular heart rate, fluid balance, and blood pressure levels. It helps to build proteins and helps the body to break down and use carbs. You can find potassium in mushrooms, salmon, leafy greens, and nuts.
The right keto vitamins
You might have a better understanding as to why keto vitamins are important – why a supplement can help aid your benefit and help in your weight loss journey. Given that most of us are busy throughout the day, we simply do not have the time necessary to be perfect eaters. However, it is often exceedingly difficult to take a bunch of individual vitamins and minerals supplements every day.
If you want to cover all your nutritional bases, you do not only need keto vitamins, but you need the right combination of vitamins for keto. The right type of supplement is going to help boost your performance while on keto and makes living the keto lifestyle far easier.
Why not just opt for a simple multivitamin?
This is one question that many people ask – why not just cover all your basis by taking a multivitamin? Oftentimes a multivitamin is not going to cover everything that you need for your keto lifestyle. The right type of supplement will offer you the added nutrition that you need to get going. Always opt for the highest quality supplement options available.