Getting pregnant while on keto diet
When Carolina Cartier discovered she was pregnant with twins this past March, she never questioned whether she would continue eating a ketogenic diet. The year-old Seattle area woman had been plagued by metabolic issues literally all her life: precocious puberty; polycystic ovarian syndrome PCOS by age 14; weight gain of lbs kg on her 6 foot cm frame and pre-diabetes by her 20s. Her PCOS caused her ovaries to be enlarged and covered in cysts. She was told she was infertile and likely never able to have children. In August , aged 28, her health was so poor that she went on medical disability from her job as a financial analyst. That first month off, however, she discovered and adopted the ketogenic diet.SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Lily Nichols - 'Is Low Carb Safe During Pregnancy?'
SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Pregnancy on a Keto Diet — Dr. Eric WestmanContent:
- Can the Keto Diet Help Boost Fertility?
- Can Keto Help With Fertility? One Man Thinks the Diet Got His Wife Pregnant
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- Is low carb and keto safe during pregnancy?
- Is the Keto Diet Safe for Pregnant Women?
- What You Need to Know About Keto While Pregnant (or Trying to Get Pregnant)
- Keto for fertility and pregnancy from a keto dietitian
Can the Keto Diet Help Boost Fertility?
Forget Paleo or Whole30—when it comes to popular diet plans, the ultra high-fat, low-carb keto diet is king these days. But what is the keto diet, and why does it have people shunning bread, pasta and fruits for cheeses, meats and avocados? And is the keto diet safe while you're pregnant? The short answer: no, pregnant women shouldn't go keto. Read on to find out why experts recommend moms-to-be steer clear of this trendy eating plan. The keto diet short for ketogenic diet generally requires consuming 75 percent of your daily calories from fat, 20 percent from protein and just 5 percent from carbohydrates.
Unlike some low-carb diets that recommend nixing sugar and processed grains like white bread and pasta , going on the keto diet also means eliminating nearly all carbs from your diet, including fruits, whole grains and some vegetables. This can lead to rapid weight loss. Keto diet proponents say that eating this way increases energy, lowers diabetes risk and helps you lose weight quickly without any hunger. But the science behind keto is very limited, with very few clinical studies in humans.
When it comes to the keto diet and pregnancy, research is even scarcer. However, pregnant mice fed a ketogenic diet experienced many problems with their offspring, including slower growth, smaller hearts and brains and an enlarged spine.
Thomas Ruiz , M. Not only can the keto diet lead to developmental delays in your baby but it can also cause nutritional deficiencies if done incorrectly, which can lead to serious problems for both pregnant women and their babies, says Lily Nichols , RDN, CDE, author of Real Food for Pregnancy. The key is to remember that not all carbohydrates are created equally.
Both experts recommend cutting out simple carbs from junk foods like cookies, sugary cereals, candy, chips, soda and ice cream but keeping healthy carbs like berries, apples, beans, sweet potatoes and squash. Gestational diabetes rates have doubled in the past decade, with up to 8 percent of all pregnant women getting it, according to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention.
Ruiz says. But while the keto diet has shown to reduce diabetes in non-pregnant people, there is no evidence that the diet helps with gestational diabetes, he says.
Ruiz explains. You can definitely maintain a stable blood sugar without going into ketosis. Nichols advises her clients to focus on cutting out processed carbs, like candy and junk food, while increasing their intake of veggies, nuts, seeds, and healthy fats and protein.
Unless your doctor specifically advises you otherwise, you should not try to lose weight during pregnancy. However, two-thirds of women start their pregnancies already overweight or obese so losing weight while pregnant is a question Dr. Ruiz says he hears often. While he discourages actively trying to lose weight, he also points out the importance of not gaining too much weight during those nine months either.
Nearly half of pregnant women gain more than the recommended amount which can increase their risk of preeclampsia, heart disease, diabetes and macrosomia having a very large baby.
So how do you find that sweet spot of enough but not too much? If you are in the normal BMI range For a more specific number, use our pregnancy weight gain calculator. Ruiz adds. Rather than relying solely on your weight as an indicator of your health, Nichols says pregnancy is the perfect time to shift your attention to increasing the quality of your diet.
Now that you know the keto diet might be off the table, what diet should you follow? Wondering about your first trimester? If you are having multiples, your calorie needs will be even higher, she adds. When it comes to the form those calories come in, Dr. Ruiz recommends the Mediterranean diet as a balanced way to get in all your necessary nutrients. Lots of fish, beans, olive oil, and greens will keep you full and your baby healthy. Here are her favorite pregnancy foods:. The educational health content on What To Expect is reviewed by our medical review board and team of experts to be up-to-date and in line with the latest evidence-based medical information and accepted health guidelines, including the medically reviewed What to Expect books by Heidi Murkoff.
First Year. Baby Products. The high-fat, low-carb diet is all the rage, but it's one diet trend moms-to-be should skip. What is the keto diet? Is the keto diet safe during pregnancy? Is the keto diet good for gestational diabetes? Your Health. Pregnancy Groups.
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Can Keto Help With Fertility? One Man Thinks the Diet Got His Wife Pregnant
You do this by strictly limiting carbs in your diet while increasing your intake of fats — ideally healthy fats! What this generally leads to is a reduction in overall body fat and thus, weight loss. This all sounds pretty great, right? Well as with many things, it can be — but in moderation and when done correctly. Remaining in a state of ketosis for an extended period of time actually leads to cell damage and even cell death.
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But you may wonder if the keto diet — which is a high fat, very low carb eating plan — is safe during pregnancy. Kudos to you! But is pregnancy the right time to be on the keto diet — or any trendy diet, for that matter? Your growing body and baby need a variety of colorful foods to use as fuel and building blocks. The diet also has an unusually high fat requirement. This means that in a 2, calorie-a-day keto diet, each meal might have:. Carbohydrates are easier for the body to use as fuel. A keto diet is supposed to help shift your body from burning carbs to burning fat for energy. This state is called ketosis. Burning more fats for energy may help you lose weight — at least in the short term.
Is low carb and keto safe during pregnancy?
Our bodies normally burn carbohydrates for energy. When you restrict the number of carbs, the body is in a ketosis state. Instead of burning carbs, the body will now break down stored fat which is a more consistent form of energy. But did you know our body breaks carbs down into sugar too glucose specifically? Those salty fries and bread turn into sugar.
We asked doctors if following keto really makes it easier to conceive. The high-fat, low-carb keto diet has earned a reputation as more than just a weight-loss plan. Animal studies suggest that it might have anti-inflammatory and anti-aging effects , and the trendy diet may also help ease headaches. But one man is now claiming that not only did keto help him and his wife lose weight—it also helped them conceive.
Is the Keto Diet Safe for Pregnant Women?
Forget Paleo or Whole30—when it comes to popular diet plans, the ultra high-fat, low-carb keto diet is king these days. But what is the keto diet, and why does it have people shunning bread, pasta and fruits for cheeses, meats and avocados? And is the keto diet safe while you're pregnant?
The ketogenic diet keto diet is becoming so popular and is spilling over to the reproductive world. Many have their opinions on the topic. Because of this, I can not ignore those following this diet because they are not playing by my rules. If someone is going to follow the keto diet, I want to make sure they are being as safe as they can. Since I am not an expert in keto, I enlisted the help of a friend and colleague. Laura Dority is a registered and licensed dietitian.
What You Need to Know About Keto While Pregnant (or Trying to Get Pregnant)
Keto for fertility and pregnancy from a keto dietitian