Let’s get real. How could it be possible for the human body to have so many different ways to slim down?
It seems every year there’s another new diet that comes in hot off the press with the endorsement of some major celebrity. It makes its big debut and graces the front of every popular magazine in the grocery store checkout line. Another health expert appearing on a wellknown talk show explaining the science behind this new way of dieting, as if it’s an entirely new discovery.
Still, you can’t help but wonder if maybe this one will be the trick that helps you get back into your favorite pair of jeans from a time long before child bearing. Or at least before adulthood said sorry honey, your days of eating whatever you the heck you want without gaining a single pound are over.
In the last few years, there have been two diet plans that have been battling it out in the spotlight. There is the low-carb, high-fat Keto diet and the “skinny gene” boosting SIRTfood diet.
What’s the difference between the two? Which is better for your health and weight loss goals? What in the world is a “skinny gene”?!
To answer your questions, let’s explore everything there is to know about each diet. The following is your ultimate guide to everything keto, sirt and the science behind them.
What is the Keto Diet?Let’s begin with the keto, or ketogenic, diet. In a nutshell, a keto diet is one that consists of a low carbohydrate intake, proteins in moderation, and high fat foods. True keto peeps strive to eat 20g of carbohydrates or less per day - consuming most of their calories from heathy fat sources.
Invented back in the 1970s by Peter Huttenlocher, the idea behind it is that your body enters a state of “ketosis”. What now? This is just another fancy way of saying your metabolism stops relying on glycogen and starts burning fat for energy.
Basically, when you limit your carb and calorie intake, your body (particularly your liver) produces tiny molecules called ketones that work to provide your body with energy when your blood sugar levels are low.
Ketones are created from fat, so on this diet, your body is reprogrammed to run on fat, as opposed to glucose. By limiting your calorie intake and, in a way, training your body to burn fat for fuel, it then begins to access fat stores throughout the body when it needs energy.
Seems reasonable, right? Now… let’s switch gears and talk SIRT!
What is the Sirtfood Diet?Before we get into the science of the SIRT diet plan, let it be known that this diet encourages you to eat dark chocolate and red wine (in moderation)… Yes, you read that right! How could this be?
Well, it’s because this newfound diet plan, created by nutritionists Aidan Goggins and Glen Matten, entails eating a fair amount of “sirtfoods”. That is, foods that cause the body to produce a protein called sirtuin.
These special little proteins help reduce inflammation and protect our cells from the damage of stress. Ah, so sirtuins are to cells as red wine is to us... it’s all making sense!
In all seriousness, a sirtfood diet is said to boost your metabolism and burn fat at rapid paces. Men and women have reported to drop up to seven pounds per week after starting this diet plan.
Unlike the ketogenic diet, the sirtfood diet is broken down into two phases. During the first three days, you must cut your daily intake to 1000 calories while having three sirtfood green juices plus one primarily sirtfood meal per day.
Days four through seven you can increase your intake to 1500 calories while enjoying two green juices and one sirtfood-rich meal per day. Then, the next two week phase is referred to as the maintenance period and apparently, your body continues to shed weight consistently.
This process is said to turn on a “skinny gene” when our body’s usual energy source is running low by restricting calories. However, the studies behind sirtfood are few and far between. There is still research to be done to fully understand sirtuin and the effect it has on our health.
That being said, the sirtfood diet is making major waves and people all over the world are seeing results. Celebrities like pop singer Adele, who lost nearly 50 pounds eating SIRT, are proving that this weight loss program combined with exercise really works. Sounds doable...*pours another glass of wine*.
Keto Diet: What You Can EatAnd now the part you’ve all been waiting for… what you can eat! A keto diet consists of a wide variety of high fat foods that are probably already in your refrigerator.
● Seafood○ Salmon, shrimp, halibut… all rich in vitamins and keto-friendly. Just watch out for certain types of shellfish, such as clams, mussels, octopus, and oysters, as they are high in carbs.
● Low-carb vegetables○ Eat your greens! Asparagus, brussels sprouts, and broccoli are all nutrient-dense vegetables that you can eat in abundance on the ketogenic diet. The list goes on. As long as it has a low carbohydrate count, it is a keto-friendly veggie.
● Cheese○ Some of you are saying hallelujah! Yes, cheese is allowed on the keto diet because of its high fat content. Mozzarella and cheddar cheeses are among the best options. Beware of processed cheese and other dairy products that are high in sugar.
● Avocados○ This California “delicacy” you are absolutely welcome to enjoy on the keto diet. It is high in fat and omega 3 fatty acids. Great as a snack or mixed in a smoothie or a meal with some vegetables.
● Meat and Poultry○ This category is considered to be a staple of the ketogenic diet. They contain zero carbs and are chock full with useful vitamins. Opt for meats that are higher in fat, such as ribeye steaks and chicken thighs.
● Eggs○ Another great source of fat, omega 3 fatty acids and important nutrients, eggs are a great breakfast or midday snack to enjoy while eating keto.
● Coconut Oil○ If you didn’t know, coconut oil is an excellent substitute to other cooking oils as it is healthier when burning at such high temperatures. It’s also great for rubbing on a sunburn, you know, after you’ve been bouncing around on the beach showing off your new bikini body from doing the keto diet.
● Plain Greek Yogurt○ Another delicious option for you to enjoy, greek yogurt. It’s almost a dessert! Treat yourself!
● Cottage Cheese○ Not only a way to get your fats in, but helps reduce inflammation and heal aching muscles after exercise.
Sirtfood Diet: What You Can Eat
Now that we’ve been impressed (and possibly surprised) by the long list of delicious foods you can enjoy when following the keto diet, let’s find out what this magical “SIRTfood” is all about, so we can compare the two diet plans.
● Green Tea○ An essential part of the sirtfood diet, green tea consists an important sirtuin bioactive called catechin that reduces oxidative stress and speeds up the metabolism. It acts as an appetite suppressant, and a nice pick me up. The more you drink the better!
● Medjool Dates○ Encouraged on the sirtfood diets, medjool dates are unlike other dates in that they are caramel-like in taste and texture. They have many health benefits and are a popular choice while in the maintenance phase of the sirtfood diet. They’re great in smoothies or as is, when you need a snack to satisfy your sweet tooth. They also make for an excellent alternative sweetener for tea or coffee.
● Dark Chocolate (must be at least 85% cocoa)○ Rich in flavor and polyphenols - eat moderate amounts of dark chocolate on the sirtfood diet without worrying about a thing! Just make sure the cocoa content is on the higher end, at least 85% or more
● Apples○ You know what they say. An apple a day keeps the doctor away and apparently, an apple a day keeps weight gain at bay.
● Citrus Fruits○ We already know that citrus fruits are rich in vitamins, nutrients and fiber, but now we know that they are high in polyphenols and help our bodies burn fat and get lean.
● Parsley○ This minty herb is full of antioxidants and nutrients. It promotes bone health and protects your vision. Use parsley as a garnish or mix in with other cooked vegetables to utilize its health benefits.
● Turmeric○ A medicinal herb with anti-inflammatory effects is a welcome addition to this diet plan. It’s safe to consume a dosage of 500 to 2,000 milligrams of turmeric a day.
● Kale○ Among one of the most nutrient-dense foods in the world, kale can be consumed abundantly on the sirtfood diet. Enjoy it in a smoothie or as a salad.
● Blueberries○ The candy of the earth, blueberries are a refreshing treat to enjoy on this diet. They’re also great for hydration and are chock full of vitamins.
● Capers○ Bet you didn’t know capers are an incredibly healthy superfood. They can be used for diabetes, fungal infections, arthritis, and to help with a number of other ailments.
● Red Wine○ Last, but certainly not least, red wine is welcomed with open arms on the sirtfood diet (in moderation of course). These aren’t the only sirtfoods that you can enjoy. Others include arugula, coffee, chilies, walnuts and more, but you get the gist!
Benefits of Keto Diet vs. Benefits of Sirtfood DietIt seems both of these popular diets allow you to enjoy a wide variety of foods that other diets require you to cut out to achieve your weight loss goals. They offer a much more realistic and satisfying menu than, let’s say, the cabbage soup diet. Now, the big question is: which one is better for you and your health?
The keto diet can help you lose weight and also has other benefits to boost your health. It can be helpful in clearing up acne, improving heart and brain function, and can lower your risk for life threatening diseases such as certain cancers. It also has been said to help reduce seizures in young children.
Studies have shown it is possible to stick with a mostly ketogenic eating plan for long term, but incorporating more carbohydrates, such as vegetables, fruits and beans, into your diet is crucial for your overall health.
On the other hand, following a SIRTfood diet has also been vouched for as a way to achieve rapid weight loss. It can protect you from chronic illnesses and has anti-aging abilities. Whether you are strict with this diet plan or not, incorporating these nutrient-rich sirtfoods into your diet can be beneficial to your health.
However, this diet isn’t realistic for long term for a number of reasons. The super low calorie and low carb intake can be unhealthy and there is still much needed research to determine the impact it has on our bodies.
It seems there are both positives and negatives about the Keto diet and SIRTfood diet. The truth is any major lifestyle change is bound to help you lose weight, and these trendy and unique programs, when followed correctly, are viable options.
The bottom line is both the keto and sirtfood diets focus on eating foods that are rich in nutrients and cause a positive reaction in our systems that lead to a faster metabolism, reduced inflammatory and the burning of excess fat. Maybe a balance of these two kinds of diets is a best of both worlds kind of situation? We’ll save that for another health expert to discover.
If you have your own weight loss goals and want to try a new approach to achieving them, a lifestyle change such as the ketogenic or sirtfood diet is worth a shot. At the end of the day, any diet that allows dark chocolate and wine, or high-fat mozzarella cheese can’t be too hard.