A Keto diet has become a huge diet trend over the last few years due to so many people using this diet technqiue to burn calories and lose lots of weight. As boxer myself I have used this diet and definitly saw a massive difference in weight dropping, however I do have to question if it is good for the long term and I don’t think this is a type of diet for every boxer to use.
In this blog I’ll explain exactly how Keto diet works and the pros and cons for boxers using the diet.
What is a Keto diet?
For those that don’t know what a keto diet is I’ll explain. You may have heard of the high-protein, low-carbohydrate Atkins diet. The keto diet keeps carbohydrate levels low, but instead of ramping up the amount of protein in your diet, the keto diet increases the amount of fat.
A typical keto diet aims for meals with 75% fat, 20% protein, and 5% carbohydrate. Eating a high-fat diet can still mean eating healthy. Keto diet menu items often include seafood, meat, dairy products, eggs, vegetables, and nuts. With the increased popularity of the keto diet, keto recipes are widely available. See some keto diet foods below:
How Does the Keto Diet Work?
It might seem counterintuitive that adding more fat to your diet can lead to weight loss. Normally, your diet is high in carbohydrates, which are broken down into glucose, or blood sugar, for use as energy. As glucose enters your bloodstream, your body releases insulin to store excess glucose as fat. The more carbohydrates, the more glucose. The more glucose, the more insulin, and the more insulin, the more fat.
The keto diet takes advantage of the fact that when your meals are high-fat and low-carbohydrate, there is no insulin spike, and you don’t add to your fat reserves. Instead, fat from diet and stored fat are broken down to ketones (“keto” is short for “ketogenic” producing ketones). Like glucose, ketones can be used for energy, keeping your body running without increasing blood sugar or putting on excess fat. The benefits of the keto diet can be huge!
World Heavyweight Champ Tyson Fury on Keto
Before I go onto the pro and cons below of the keto diet for boxers. I highly recommend you watch the video below of current World heavyweight champion Tyson Fury on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast. Here he explains how the keto diet managed to help him lose a huge amount weight for him to get back to his best!
The pros and cons for a Keto Diet in Boxing
Improved Blood Pressure
High blood pressure significantly increases the risk of several diseases and is a leading cause of deaths worldwide. A low-carb diet has been proven to be more effective than a low-fat diet in reducing blood pressure. In fact, some claim that it is just as effective as taking pills. This combined with the weight loss derived from a ketogenic diet, is sure to vastly improve cardiovascular health and function.
Having high blood pressure before a fight in boxing amatuer of professional is never a good thing and being on this diet will certainly help this issue if you have a history of highblood pressure, this diet may help to lower it.
The ketones produced from a low carb diet are a much more efficient source of energy than glucose. Studies have indicated that they can improve cognitive impairment and even help with diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. The high-fat diet helps to support the balance of essential omega 3s and omega 6s which are vital for optimal brain function. Additionally, ketosis is able to boost mitochondria production and adenosine triphosphate within the brain’s memory cells, thereby improving mental performance and clarity.
Being able to think clearly while you are in sparring or in contest is crucial and anythig to help you mental performance could be difference between winning and losing in the ring.
Overall, the keto diet is an excellent way to burn fat and lose weight. Eating fewer carbohydrates suppresses appetite, and studies have shown that keto diet participants eat fewer calories overall because of this. Burning fat for energy can lead to rapid weight loss.
Long Term Performance
If you plan on going on a keto diet for the long term while boxing training, you may find yourself start to stuggle to keep up your levels of intensity during training. Yes a keto diet will help you lose weight, but things like carbs can be very effecient beneficial energy requirement for boxer due to the high intensity of the workouts you will be doing.
Adjusting to the diet
If you are in the middle of your training now and you start a keto diet all of a sudden you my struggle at first as it will take your body a short period to adjust.
If you can get past one week of being on the diet you will really start to see and feel the benefits of the keto diet.
For me this is a short term solution for losing weight while boxing training, if you find yourself overweight or wanting to get to certain weight over a short period of time I would recommend giving a Keto Diet a go. If you are already close to your fight weight I wouldn’t nesscarily recommend going on this type of diet or if you are doing a lot of high intensity workouts as carbs can be beneficial.
For those that have not been able to gain many results from other weight loss methods in their boxing training, the keto approach is definitely something worth considering to try out.
To really help customize your keto diet, you should definitely check out Custom Keto Diet’s “Done For You” meal plans which are completely customized based on your food preferences and weight loss goals. You can visit their website www.customketodiet.com/get-diet to start creating your plan. Simply follow it to achieve a successful keto diet and desired weight.
Why not read my review on the Custom Keto Diet here.
Let me know in the comments below if you are thinking of taking up a keto diet or if you have used this while boxing training.
You can also check out more of my diet and nutrition articles for more here.
Thanks for reading!