Do Calories Count On Keto Diet

How To Configure Myfitnesspal

DO CALORIES COUNT on a KETOGENIC DIET? Stop misleading people with ridiculous statements!

Signing up for MyFitnessPal is simple. You can use Facebook or your email, and it will ask you for your goals, height, weight, activity level, etc. Feel free to change the units to whatever you prefer to use from here on out.

Keep in mind that you can adjust your calorie goals later if you wish. I find that using the keto calculator provides me with a more accurate estimate of how much I need to eat. After I use the calculator to find my daily needs, I plug it into MyFitnessPal.

Do Calories Matter On A Keto Diet

Authored by Nate Martins – Blog Post from

The ketogenic diet first gained fame through its effectiveness for weight loss. The high-fat, low-carb diet promotes nutritional ketosisâa normal metabolic state marked by moderate levels of ketones in the blood. The idea with carb restriction in terms of weight loss is that it prompts the release of body fat to be burned or converted to ketones for energy .

For decades, much of dieting focused on counting caloric intake. But not keto.Letâs explore why you should be paying more attention to the types of food consumed instead of that little number on the back of a nutrition label.

Are All Calories Created Equal?

Keto and Weight Loss

It almost sounds counterintuitive at first can a high-fat diet promote weight loss?A review of 13 randomized controlled trials found that people on the ketogenic diet lost significantly more weight than people on low-fat diets. They also kept the weight off for 12 months or more.9 While the diets in these studies contained no more than 50 grams of carbohydrate , low-carb diets with more generous amounts of carbohydrate showed similar results in a review of 17 randomized controlled trials.10 More recently, type 2 diabetics lost 12% of their body weight after one year in diet-induced ketosis.11

Not seeing results from the keto diet?

Metabolic Advantage

Appetite Suppression

Should You Count Calories on Keto?

Weight Loss Doesn’t Happen Overnight

Eating Fewer Calories Leaves You Hungry Is Not Sustainable

So many of the clients that join BSB Tribe tell me that they lost weight cutting calories but they gained it all back once they started eating normally.

This is the EXACT problem with calorie-counting diets.

Yes, cutting calories will make you lose weight. However, is it sustainable?

That is where we get into the topic of LIFESTYLE. Ive said this before, and I will repeat it, KETO IS A LIFESTYLE.

The problem with low-calorie diets is this you always end up hungry. They dont sustain you. Do you know what sustains you? Fat and Protein.

Fat has nine calories per gram. Compare that to four calories per gram from carbs. Fat keeps you full.

This leads me to another point of why Keto works so well Eating more fat keeps you full for longer so indirectly you are probably eating fewer calories without doing so on purpose.

Eating foods that keep your insulin low will result in less fat storage in your body and more fat burn. Fat keeps your insulin low, along with most protein and low glycemic fruits and vegetables.

This is what I teach inside my program BSB Tribe and my clients are able to eat of the RIGHT food and still lose weight AND keep it off

Ok, so now that you get my point of why I think calories dont matter on Keto, let me share my view about how I think they do matter.

Dont worry, in the end I will give you some advice on how I think you should approach it if you so choose to take my opinion.

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All Calories Are Not Created Equal

Imagine you have two meals with the same thermic effect, as well as oxidative priority, yet one is nutrient dense with vitamins, minerals, enzymes and the other is void of these. While your body may digest it the same, you may be left feeling less than completely satisfied after your meal, hunger for more, which is often what can lead to overeating and cravings.

For example, eating a bun-less, fast food burger with cheese, onions, pickles, and condiments is not going to give you the same satiety as a meal of a grass-fed ground beef burger, with organic broccoli and cauliflower, tossed in grass-fed butter, ghee or avocado oil.

Do I Have To Use The Keto Macro Calculator To Get Results

Why the Keto Diet Works

Simply by eating keto foods and cutting out the carbs, most people will eat fewer calories than usual and start losing weight consistently. However, following the diet in this way can increase your likelihood of hitting a weight loss plateau and not knowing what to do next.

One of the most efficient and effective ways to diet is by using a macronutrient calculator, like the keto calculator, as a guide for how much you should eat. It will provide you with estimates for the fat, protein, carbs, and calories you should consume each day to get the results you want.

To help you stay on track to meeting your macro needs, we recommend using a calorie tracking app like MyFitnessPal or Cronometer. If youd like to learn how to use these apps for the keto diet, read through our carb tracking guide.

  • Significantly increase your chances of getting the results you want
  • Enter and stay in ketosis
  • Stay on track with your keto diet
  • Stop guessing how much you should be eating
  • Enjoy all of the benefits of keto dieting and ketosis

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You Like Endurance Training

Endurance training and keto are a perfect combination: they improve each other in a way that allows you to progress rapidly in both areas.

Ketogenic diets provide a great fuel source for endurance training.

Relying on carbs for energy is a struggle for endurance training since youre going to run out early into your training and performance will drop accordingly.

However, body-fat provides hundreds of thousands of calories of energy without the need to eat.

Once youre keto-adapted, you can make huge changes to your performance and when you start to experience extreme fatigue-related losses.

On the other hand, endurance training boosts ketogenic diet performance by rapidly accelerating your ability to oxidize fats.

This, in turn, boosts efficiency in burning fats as fuels and pushes you towards nutritional and exercise-induced ketosis, as well as faster keto-adaptation.

So, if youre looking to perform at your best in endurance training or you enjoy it more than heavy weights or intense gymnastics the ketogenic diet is going to be a great way to really open up that calorie deficit.

Do I Count Calories On The Ketogenic Diet

Im often asked about whether I count calories/macros on the Keto Diet, so I thought I should dedicate a whole blog post to discuss my thoughts and experience with this topic.

In The Beginning

When I first started the Keto Diet I tracked every single morsel of food that entered my mouth. I wanted to ensure that I was achieving my macro and calorie targets. This helped reassure me that I was doing Keto correctly.

Over time I learned the macro content and rough calories of my favourite, go to Keto friendly foods. This made it easier to go some days without tracking, as my meals were often the same day to day. But, tracking was still a part of my routine.

What About Now?

Im approaching 6 months of following the Keto Diet. Those days of not tracking turned into weeks and now I rarely track at all. I track if Im having a prolonged plateau, just to make sure Im still on track. I usually surprise myself by eating almost exactly to plan.

Ive just learned what makes up a typical Keto meal and what foods are best avoided .

Overall I found that a solid foundation of tracking has helped me to understand the Keto ratios and be more relaxed as time has gone on.

Should You Count Calories/Macros?

Obviously thats a very personal decision. This post is not meant as dietary advice. Id say that you should find a way to follow the Keto Diet that is as sustainable as possible in the long term.

Disclosure this post contains affiliate links.

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How Macronutrients Affect Hormones

The thermic effect of food isnt the only variable that is different among carbs, protein, and fat.

Calories arent the only thing that determine weight loss. Hormones play a profound role in telling your body what to do with the calories you eat.

The hormonal big three when it comes to weight loss are insulin, glucagon, and leptin.

Insulin is perhaps the most well-known of these. When blood sugar rises, insulin is released by the pancreatic beta-cells in order to regulate blood glucose levels. It does this by shuttling glucose into cells where its either used as a fuel source or stored as muscle glycogen.

Insulin is sometimes called the fat storage hormone because it promotes fat synthesis / storage, and also suppresses fat breakdown . Basically, insulin is a signal that tells the body there is plenty of fuel around , so fat stores dont need to be called upon. Jensen1989

What is a big trigger for insulin levels to rise? High carbohydrate foods.

Glucagon is the counter hormone to insulinits released when blood glucose levels are low . Glucagon release is a trigger for the liver to begin releasing stored glucose in order to maintain homeostasis. Jiang2003 This can be invaluable between meals, during exercise, or any other time glucagon is released, like during fight or flight situations.

Leptin is a signal that senses nutrientscalories in, calories out, and how many calories we have stored as fat.

How Do I Meet My Macros With A Ketogenic Diet

Do You Need To Count Calories on Keto? How to Know if You Need to Count Calories on Keto | KetoGains

The simplest way to meet your macros is by cutting out non-keto foods and eating keto-friendly foods. Heres a brief food list for you to start with:

Do Not Eat

  • Grains wheat, corn, rice, cereal, etc.
  • Sugar honey, agave, maple syrup, etc.
  • Fruit apples, bananas, oranges, etc.
  • Tubers potato, yams, etc.
  • Sweeteners stevia, erythritol, monk fruit, and other low-carb sweeteners >
  • Other fats coconut oil, high-fat salad dressing, saturated fats, etc.

To see more specific advice on how to meet your macros on keto, for a comprehensive keto food list. Or, if you want a different idea of how to get to these macro calculations, you can also see our 14 Day Keto Diet Plan for ideas.

If you are looking for more specific suggestions on how to meet your protein and/or fat needs on keto, we will explore that in greater detail in the next two questions.

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The Argument That Calories Are Poorly Derived

Some may argue that the calorie is a poorly derived unit of energy, which also poorly translates across carbohydrates, fats, and proteins.

This simply isnt the case. We understand how cell respiration works, and there are numerous studies on how it works.

Lets take a look at how we found these values:

  • Digestible fiber is 2 calories per gram
  • Carbohydrates are 4 calories per gram
  • Protein is 4 calories per gram
  • Fats are 9 calories per gram

Counting calories has shown to be accurate. Theres a large database that exists on the energy expenditure. This study shows that the energy expenditure is actually similar to the recommendations adopted by FAO and WHO.

These recommendations have been adopted because studies have been done on these units, and confirmed that these are good approximate values for human digestion and utilization.

Isn’t Weight Loss Just Calories In And Calories Out

If you’re ever been on a diet to lose weight, you’ve most often been told or heard that it’s just about the calories you’re consuming and the calories you are expending that matters for weight loss. But if you’ve been on a ketogenic diet, you most likely have heard that counting calories isn’t needed at all on a keto diet and just keeping your daily carb intake to 20, with moderate protein and high fat will be enough to lose weight. This can be confusing and is often debatable among keto experts.

While there are many different approaches to following a keto diet, one thing is constant across the board for all the research I found and that is, that the most effective ketogenic diet is one that is a nutrient dense, whole food diet. Focusing on fresh, single ingredient low carbohydrate foods and eliminating packaged, refined, processed foods, even keto products, is the best for overall health and longevity.

Many factors besides just calories are involved in weight loss. Hormones like insulin, ghrelin and leptin play a critical role in fat loss, hunger and satiety levels. The nutrient density of your food, your genetics, your sensitivity to insulin, your ability to keep your blood sugar balanced when eating a ketogenic diet, your muscle mass, your exercise level, all effect your weight loss or lack there of.

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Youre Avoiding Fruit And Vegetables

Too many people focus on restricting carb intake to the point where they dont eat their vegetables. Dont do this. Vegetables are critical to your health, even if youre on the keto diet.

They also contain micronutrients and fiber, so you dont want to miss out on them. Make sure that youre eating your veggies, especially the non-starchy kinds. Cauliflower, broccoli, zucchini, and mushrooms are great options.

Fruit also becomes the enemy for people following a low-carb diet. But, just like with vegetables, they are an important factor in your health. While some fruits are higher in carbs, there are also alternatives, such as berries, that are delicious and are low in carbs.

Eating your servings of whole foods, such as fruit and vegetables, is important. Dont just rely on products that are marketed as keto-friendly, because chances are, they are also processed.

While it is okay to indulge a little, you want to make sure that youre eating as much whole food as possible. That includes your fruits and veggies.

Dr. Anthony Gustin, Co-Founder of Perfect Keto, says, I would ten times out of ten rather have you eating a diet composed of 90 percent real food carbs and not have a single ketone in your body than eating a heap of processed junk.

He emphasizes food quality. Whatever food plan or diet you choose to follow, this is an important factor.

Carbs -Fiber = Net Carbs

Those Against Counting Calories:

Do you need to count calories on a ketogenic diet? does not recommend counting calories because they believe that it’s more about the kind of food you are putting into your body that matters. They state that staying away from high carb, processed foods, and leaning toward nutrient dense, whole foods is better, as well as reducing or eliminating even low carb, high-reward type foods like nuts and cheese that are easy to overeat.

The True Health Center for Functional Medicine advises against counting calories, stating that while they believe calorie counting does have some benefits, in general it is unnecessary. They state that as you become more keto adapted, you will burn calories at a higher rate and that it is more about the type of calories than the amount consumed.

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How Do I Track My Net Carbs

The simplest way to make sure you are limiting carbs enough is by using an app like Cronometer that calculates net carbs for you. In our guide to carb tracking on keto, we teach you how to configure Cronometer for keto diet success.

You can also track net carbs by calculating them yourself and adding them up throughout the day. If you need help finding the net carbs in the foods you are eating, read through this quick post.

P.S. Have a look at the Keto Academy, our foolproof 30-day keto meal planner. It has all the tools, information, and recipes needed for you to succeed.

+ The food will always fit to your macros and cooking preferences!

Should I Count Calories On Keto

Calorie counting is not necessarily required on keto, but it can help. It may be especially useful when you are just getting started or if you have reached a plateau. Keeping track of what you eat can help you become aware of what foods work best for you.

Tracking can help you learn portion control and identify foods that are high in carbohydrates. It can help you figure out what is not working. Keeping food records is no different than recording workout progress or creating a financial budget. You cant make changes or improvements without data. The increased awareness can be helpful.

But, if your goal is to lose weight, instead of tracking every calorie, focus on high quality food that will promote the release of appetite suppressing hormones to reduce hunger and increase satisfaction. Having a meal plan or meal prepping on a weekly basis will help you in this respect.

Make sure you have some convenient keto food available. Avocados, eggs, coconut oil, mct oil, leafy greens and other low carb veggies are just a few staples that are great to keep on hand.

Avoid foods that are easy to overeat and high in calories, like nuts or cheese.

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So Do You Need To Count Calories On Keto

Most people who come in overweight and want to lose weight shouldnt need to count calories.

If you arent losing weight, try counting for a couple days to see if youre doing anything totally crazy like eating 1,500 calories of keto trail mix every day as a snack on top of your normal meals.

If you want to gain weight on keto and you cant, try counting calories to make sure youre getting enough.

But again, for most people, calorie-counting shouldnt be necessary, because keto accomplishes the calorie-reduction magic without making you explicitly count them out. Thats one of the great parts about the diet enjoy it!

Do you count calories on keto? Why or why not? Let us know on or !

P.S: With 2022 being at the door, now is a great time to make meaningful changes. I now offer private coaching sessions, learn more here to get started.

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