Cristina Galafate

Updated Sunday, February 25, 2024-01:24

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When the keto diet was not yet a fad endorsed by Kim Kardashian, they were already talking about what ketosis



Thus they became a tandem of two authoritative voices in Spain and Latin America, with more than 15 million visits to their articles and 220,000 students in their course.

Oriol Roda

(San Cugat del Vallés, June 13, 1977), Doctor in Molecular Biology and MBA, and

Néstor Sánchez

(Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, December 19, 1980), lover of human physiology and psychoneuroimmunologist, now publish

Salud Keto.

Recover your infinite energy: the definitive guide to understanding and applying the ketogenic diet

(Ed. Grijalbo).

Néstor Sánchez and Oriol Roda, authors of 'Keto Health'.EM

Relying on research and horrifying data, such as that one billion people (12.5% ​​of the world's population) suffer from diabetes, obesity or both, and that 2.8 million people die every year from problems related to being overweight. , they explain in a simple way that

we eat more than we need

and the failure of the low-calorie diet.

"Our body is designed for a world of scarcity where accumulating fat was the best strategy to survive," they maintain.

What happens in the abundance of ultra-processed products and sugar spikes?

Why has fat been demonized?

This is their point of view as professionals.

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What does it mean to be in ketosis and have ketone bodies in the blood?

Oriol Roda:

Ketosis is the physiological state we enter when our body needs to use its fat reserves.

A state of deficiency that you normally enter when you are fasting.

What your body does is activate fats for energy.

But a limitation of fats is that they cannot reach the brain, since they do not cross its blood-brain barrier and, therefore, they do not reach the neurons.

In the liver they are transformed into other molecules called

ketone bodies

that can enter the brain.

It's called ketosis, it generates ketones.

Why doesn't ketosis have a good reputation?

Néstor Sánchez:

It is surprising, because it is a natural and very beneficial state that occurs in our body when it runs out of external food and begins to use the accumulated

fat reserves


It works like this: your body receives the signal that it is running out of energy, it activates muscle and liver glycogen reserves, the way we store carbohydrates, and when they are not enough it activates fat reserves in adipose tissue.

Is there another way to achieve ketosis that doesn't involve following a keto diet?


Of many, yes: with fasting, doing a lot of sports, eating very little... Anything that involves

mobilizing fat reserves

in a profound way.

The ketogenic diet is another strategy, not the only way to enter ketosis. Many people ask a friend or search on Google and end up doing crazy things.

What would a good ketogenic diet strategy look like then?


A good informed approach would be what feels good: real foods and not ultra-processed products [sugar-sweetened beverages, convenience foods, industrial pastries, processed meats, cookies, sugary dairy products, desserts, sweets...].

As a second point, carbohydrates should be reduced.


If carbohydrates enter, the body uses carbohydrates as an energy resource and, if fat always enters, it will use fat.

Would this mean moderating or avoiding cereals, tubers, fruits and legumes?


That's the basis.

You hear a lot from people that: "Wow, eating all the fat you want, how cool."

From there, what we advocate is avoiding entering ketosis by using substitutes or ultra-elaborate recipes with sweeteners or almond flour.

We believe that, because of how

they feel and confuse the body

, it would not be a good approach, even though they can lead you to ketosis.

Our approach is: make it simple, easy, delicious and nutritious.


Eating meat, fish, eggs, vegetables in general, mushrooms, seaweed and a little nuts without going overboard.

Fats can be very caloric, right?


There are many questions in your question.

The first.

What is your goal with this diet?

For most people it is losing weight and eliminating fat.

In this situation, you have to be in

a caloric deficit


This means spending more than you consume, and it is achieved either by exercising more or eating slightly less.

And it is true that fat is very caloric and you should avoid going overboard with this point of view.

But with the ketogenic diet, hunger is regulated very well and people do not have as much appetite because fat is very satiating.

For many, this calorie restriction occurs naturally because there is no hedonic hunger.

There are even people who need to be watched so that they do not eat too little.

This can happen if you eat enough protein, because it is also very satiating. In the same way that there are refined and whole grains, what are quality fats?


Removing sugars does not mean that you exclusively eat

pork belly, butter and bacon


What grease to use?

Saturated fats found in animal protein and monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, such as Omega 3 and olive oil.

It is true that we consume more fat than in other types of diets, basically, because we have removed a macronutrient.

It is interesting that there is a good amount because it is a way of telling your body that fat is arriving and, therefore, that it is the energy resource it uses.

If you only eat fat and do not lose weight after a while, you have to see if you are not moving, and also resort to physical activity, intermittent fasting or cold, which are other resources. If we restrict a macronutrient for a long time, when we return to taking it, will it feel the same to our bodies?

Are breaks or guidelines for reintroducing foods necessary?


There is no problem with the ketogenic diet.

There are people who do it for many years and do not suffer any deficiency.

But it is evident that

it is not the most comfortable or easy strategy


We follow the natural cycles of the body and the world.

The seasons mark the times of a lot of fruit and those of less, so the ideal would be to make them coincide, for example, in winter.

But carbohydrate is always present in our body.

And if you don't take it exogenously, your own body generates it.

Capacity is not lost.

Of course, what doesn't feel good to your body, when you get used to not eating it, it usually makes you feel terrible.

How can you then sit down a plate of pasta after being in ketosis for a long time?


No one is going to feel bad about an apple or a potato, but a plate of pasta probably will.

In the big eight, known as

The Big Eight

, the foods with the most reactive potential that we consume, is wheat.

Many people feel bad even if they don't know it.

You don't have to consider carbohydrates, yes or no?

But macaroni, yes or no? Tell us examples of quality fats and those that would never pass your cut.


From least to most: the one that we have to

completely avoid is hydrogenation

, since there is already brutal evidence against it.

Neutral fats are saturated fats, which do neither harm nor good, as long as you take them in the right amount.

The essential ones are the monounsaturated ones, mainly olive oil.

And polyunsaturated Omega 3 fatty acids, present, for example, in fish.

Is extra virgin olive oil our




In fact, the Mediterranean diet, to a large extent, owes its success to the high consumption of olive oil and this should also be the basis of keto.

It is the

star food

of our country, that is, what we are also doing here is the Spain brand, claiming the fruits of our land. The word diet in popular culture is associated with something negative, restrictive, that deprives us, that costs us, that prohibits... However, diet is simply the way we eat.

"Set of substances that are regularly ingested as food," defines the RAE.

Why is a book that talks about diet accompanied by the word health?


Now we have seen the potential that the ketogenic diet has for losing weight, but imagine how shocking it was to start talking years ago about avoiding fruit or grains even if they were whole grains.

This diet goes far beyond losing weight.

We are generating processes in the body that are closely associated with health, anti-aging... We wanted to make it clear that it is not a panacea, but that when properly planned it is one more tool to add to your health and well-being.

Diet connects you with frustrations because you couldn't lose weight, that's why we didn't like it as a headline.

This intervention, whoever does it well, achieves benefits to recover energy that many people have lost.

It's metabolic freedom in everyday life. The subtitle says it gives you energy, but headlines usually associate it with danger.


Look, we have become accustomed to a life in which if we skip a meal we get sick.

Since we wake up we are tired.

We are used to spending the day with a very low energy level.

What would happen, however, if you have a body that allows you to obtain energy from its own reserve?

If you run to catch the bus, it will use carbohydrates, but if it has to go for a walk in the mountains, it can easily use fat.

This is what is achieved when metabolic flexibility is recovered, which is the optimization of your energy resources.

You give yourself the freedom to be able to move without being with these chains and restrictions that comfortable living and the overdose of ultra-processed products have created for us. How does this diet affect the metabolism?


This diet makes your body's cells use fat as their main resource when you do it right, without reducing the consumption of daily calories burned, what we call basal metabolism.

If you restrict calories, the normal thing is to feel obsessed with food, to feel cold... ketogenic gives you access to your reserves, which are a lot, about 175,000 kcal.


To understand it easily, it is like losing your job but with two million euros saved in the bank.

If we get fired we don't have it so bad, and that's what happens when you're on a ketogenic diet.

We know that a negative energy balance is essential for losing weight, but how does it make us feel?

To avoid having a bad time, state of ketosis. Why is the ketogenic diet related to type 2 diabetes?


Look, the most important health problems today, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome, which is poor insulin regulation, are corrected precisely with the ketogenic diet.

It is a direct solution because you will improve your insulin sensitivity.

It is an important metabolic change for the health of your mitochondria, because fat is metabolized in these energy plants. What contraindications does this diet have and for which profiles is it not recommended?


There is no strict contraindication.

But if you've never done it, don't start the ketogenic diet if you're pregnant.

It is also not recommended if you have an

eating disorder

and caution and support are required when you have hypothyroidism.

As for what can be noticed, everything that literature and experience says is that until the body gets used to this change, you may feel discomfort, diarrhea, constipation or a little bit of bloating, mainly.

In the book we talk about the ketogenic flu, which is a more technical concept but also has a solution. What evidence is there in cases of epilepsy?


There are 100 years of evidence.

The first scientific article on the use of the ketogenic diet for the treatment of epilepsy dates back to 1920. Previously, fasting was used, but you can't keep people like that.

There are thousands of articles in PubMed with a simple search.

It is the first therapeutic intervention of the ketogenic diet, and now it is being seen that it has many effects at the neuronal level in other diseases.

In Spain, one of the first people with epilepsy to make adjustments with the ketogenic diet guided by a nutritionist and neurologist went from three seizures to none.


We have an aunt who organizes conferences of epileptologists, who are neurologists who only talk about epilepsy.

And she tells us that they are constantly talking about ketogenic enablement as a treatment for epilepsy.

She has already crossed the niche of a few particular scientists.

It is an available treatment, not always the one of choice, but it can treat problems of the central nervous system, including seizures.

It has no side effects like many medications.

If they tell us that it can entail risk, and what risk does three seizures in one day have?

This is historic. Is there fear of the ketogenic diet?


It's a good question, but fear exists of anything that changes the status quo.

There is a resistance to change that is difficult to understand.

The ketogenic diet is a strategy that simulates fasting, but eating.

You save yourself that problem of not eating food.

A few years ago I remember that people talked about fasting, demonizing it, and it is now the order of the day.

And it has the same evidence because the strategies are similar.

I think that the keto diet has been done wrong, based on bacon and this is not it.


On average, it is estimated that any scientific advance takes about 17 years to reach society.

Sometimes there is too big a space that confronts.

It took a lot to start saying that we should eat fruit and not so much sugar and that is part of the explanation: it touches on essential elements.

And another part is that money was paid by the industry to speak ill of fats and save sugar.

We have had to retrace our path.

Maybe it's not the diet you would choose, but it makes very negative headlines, while sugary custard can be advertised by a celebrity and during children's hours.

People are shocked to restrict fruit or legumes because they are healthy and foods that many civilizations have taken.


Nothing happens to anyone by not eating fruit for three weeks, because vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin C, can be consumed from vegetables with the keto diet.

The key question is, if fat were so bad, why does our body store it?

Has no sense.

If we store it, the logic is that it is because we use it.

After demonizing fats and buying everything


Aren't we making the same mistake with carbohydrates?


Absolutely and we say it in the book.

You can eat healthy by eating carbohydrates


It is fast energy.

We have also heard that the protein causes cancer.

It is foolish to think that a macronutrient can be demonic.

They are all in their place and the body knows how to use them.

Now, we cannot talk about carbohydrates when it comes to a sugary soft drink that confuses our body with spoonfuls of sugar.

Just as good fats are not trans fats.

Does the ketogenic diet affect sports performance?


There are some barriers to that.

For strength it has been shown in many studies that carbohydrate is not necessary.

You can perform and gain muscle mass if you eat enough protein and with good training.

The carbohydrate can be useful for a person who is in very high performance and you could even use it without leaving ketosis, because if the carbohydrate goes directly to replenish the glycogen stores of your muscle.

When we are in resistance, it will help you optimize your performance with fats, which is the so-called aerobic performance, and it is very efficient.

But it is true that once you have overcome it, if you are running for a long time and you do not have enough carbohydrates, you need to eat them.

This does not apply to the general population that runs for half an hour three times a week, we are talking about the elite.

Keto Health.

Recover Your Infinite Energy: The Ultimate Guide to Understanding and Applying the Ketogenic Diet

is edited by Grijalbo and you can purchase it here.