When surgeon, author, and host of The Dr. Oz Show Mehmet Oz speaks, the diet community listens.
So when Dr. Oz did a segment Monday about dietary supplement raspberry ketone, it left us wanting to know more about what it is, what it does — and whether it’s safe.
On the show, Dr. Oz touted over-the-counter raspberry ketone supplements as a “miracle fat-burner in a bottle.” More specifically, ketone supplements are concentrated doses of the chemical in raspberries that causes their distinct aroma. The substance has been approved by the FDA as “generally safe” since 1965, but ketones are experiencing a surge in popularity thanks to several recent studies analyzing their ability to burn stored fat. Research in both mice and humans have confirmed the all-natural supplement’s fat-burning powers, though many experts regard the data as preliminary, and suggest that people who want to lose weight should stick to good ole diet and exercise.
On Dr. Oz, weight-loss expert Lisa Lynn explained how the product has helped many of her clients break through weight-loss plateaus when used in conjunction with a healthy diet and daily exercise. She recommends taking 100 or 200 mg supplements of ketone with breakfast and lunch daily, which she says is the chemical equivalent of about 90 pounds of fresh raspberries.
“[With ketone] your body metabolically will go in the direction you want it to go in,” Dr. Oz said on the show. “I’m hoping this will get you over the hump to weight loss, and you use it for that purpose, not as a miracle pill.”
Still, not everyone is as on-board with raspberry ketone as Dr. Oz. Diets in Review pharmacist Dr. Sarah G. Kahn says ketones work by regulating the body’s release of norepinephrine, which causes a body-temperature spike and increase in metabolism. However, she cautions, it might not be safe for people with certain health conditions.
“I would not recommend this product to diabetics without speaking to their doctor because of the risk of blood sugar fluctuations,” she says. “People who have heart issues or high blood pressure would also not be good candidates for raspberry ketones because norepinephrine can have effects on blood pressure and heart rate. This may also have an effect on people who have COPD or asthma conditions and may make their conditions worse.”
The keto diet is a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet that tricks your body to burn fat instead of carbohydrates for energy. It’s proven to help with weight loss, but in order for it to be effective, you need to eat the right kinds of foods. Follow these simple do’s and don’ts to ensure that you see results on this diet.
DO Eat Leafy Greens
Leafy greens like arugula, spinach, kale, and cabbage are best to eat on the keto diet because they are low in carbohydrates. You should only be eating 5 percent carbs in comparison to 20 percent protein, and 75 percent fat.
DON’T Eat High-Sugar Fruit
Some fruit, while healthy, contains a lot of carbohydrates. Since the keto diet focuses on low-carbs you should eliminate all high-sugar fruit like mangoes, grapes, cherries, and bananas, from your diet.
DO Increase Your Intake of Seeds
Seeds are a great source of healthy fats, which will help your body reach a ketogenic state to burn fat. Consider adding flaxseeds, chia seeds, and sesame seeds into some of your dishes to boost the flavor and help burn fat simultaneously.
DON’T Buy Grain-Based Items
Grain-based foods like bread, pasta, cookies, and rice should be permanently removed from your grocery list. These foods are high in carbs, starch, and calories and should be avoided on most diets but are specifically bad if on the keto diet.
DO Add Nuts into Your Diet
Walnuts, almonds, and pecans are just some of the nuts you should consider adding into your diet. Nuts contain healthy fats, which make them a great snack to have on the keto diet.
DON’T Consume Sugar: Processed or Natural
It’s important to eliminate all carbs – which includes sugar – from your diet in order to succeed on the keto diet. Whether it’s a cookie or a banana, both should be taken out of your diet to allow your body to turn stored fat into fuel rather than adding increasing and storing fat on your body.
DO Eat Lean Protein
On the keto diet, about 20 percent of your diet should be protein. Lean protein is your best bet because it is low in unhealthy fat content. Make lean meat, fish, and eggs a part of your daily routine.
DON’T Eat High-Carb Vegetables
The keto diet is a low-carb diet, therefore, any item that is high in carbs is not good to have – even if they are vegetables. Vegetables that are high in carbs like potatoes, sweet potatoes, and corn should not be on your grocery list. Instead, opt for low-carb veggies like leafy greens.
DO Cook with High-Fat Oils
Oils with healthy fats, like coconut oil and olive oil, are best to use on the keto diet. They are an easy way to incorporate healthy fats into your diet. You should avoid cooking with processed vegetable and seed oils.
DON’T Drink High-Calorie, High-Sugar Beverages
Drinks like milk, soda, juice, sports drinks, smoothie, beer, wine, and cocktails are off-limits on the keto diet. Avoid adding extra carbs, sugar, and calories into your diet by cutting out these drinks.
DO Drink Low-Calorie, Low-Sugar Beverages
Still and sparkling water, coffee, and tea are the best beverages to have on the keto diet. They can help you stay hydrated while avoiding added carbs into your diet. When drinking coffee and tea, be sure to avoid added sugars.
DON’T Eat Carbs
The keto diet is low-carb. This means most, if not all carbs should be avoided including those found in black beans, chickpeas, and lentils. While beans and legumes are rich in protein, they also contain large amounts of carbohydrates, which you’ll want to avoid.
Here’s how to minimize the potential side effects of ketosis:
- Drink plenty of water: Make sure to drink at least 68 oz (2 liters) of water a day. A significant amount of water weight is lost in ketosis, especially in the beginning.
- Get enough salt: Sodium, a crucial electrolyte, gets excreted in large amounts when carb intake is reduced. Replenish your salt by adding it to foods or drinking broth.
- Increase mineral intake: Foods high in magnesium and potassium may help relieve leg cramps.
- Avoid intense exercise: Don’t push yourself too hard while you’re adapting to ketosis. Stick to moderate levels of exercise in the first week or two.
- Try a low-carb diet first: To ease the transition, it might help to reduce your carbs to a moderate amount before trying a ketogenic (very low-carb) diet.
- Eat fiber: A low-carb diet is not no-carb. Eat fiber-rich foods like nuts, seeds, berries and low-carb veggies.
BOTTOM LINE:There are a few ways to minimize the negative symptoms of ketosis. These include drinking enough water, and eating foods rich in fiber and minerals.
Being in ketosis has been shown to have powerful benefits for certain people, such as people with obesity or type 2 diabetes and children with epilepsy.
Yet although ketosis is generally healthy and safe, you may experience some side effects. These include the “low-carb flu,” leg cramps, bad breath and digestive issues.
However, these effects are usually temporary and should go away within a few days or weeks. Diet and lifestyle changes can also help minimize these effects.
Additionally, it should be noted that while getting into ketosis has obvious benefits for some people, it is definitely not for everyone.
Some people feel great and experience incredible benefits on a ketogenic diet, while others feel and perform much better on a higher-carb diet.
More about ketosis and ketogenic diets:
- What is Ketosis, and is it Healthy?
- 10 Signs and Symptoms That You’re in Ketosis
- The Ketogenic Diet 101: A Detailed Beginner’s Guide
- A Ketogenic Diet to Lose Weight and Fight Disease
- How Ketogenic Diets Boost Brain Health