What Does The Research Say
Weight loss – A ketogenic diet has become popular as a quick way to lose weight but there are few studies that have evaluated its long term safety and effectiveness. Most of the short term weight loss is due to water loss from decreased glycogen stores and not from the effect of increased metabolism and fat loss.
Appetite – Increased ketone bodies as a result of a ketogenic diet decrease the feeling of hunger and lead to a loss of appetite which contributes to the short-term weight loss.
Chronic disease – As per other weight loss diets, the improved metabolic profile for type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease is a direct result of the weight loss rather than from the ketogenic diet itself.
Performance – A ketogenic diet does allow the body to burn fat more efficiently during low or moderate intensity exercise. On the other hand, carbohydrates are important because they provide a key fuel for the brain and central nervous system and can support different intensity levels of exercise. At the highest level of exercise, carbohydrates offer advantages over fats as an energy source, since they provide more energy to the body and can increase your exercise capacity.
Side effects – Due to the restrictive, high fat/low fibre make-up of the ketogenic diet, it may result in side effects such as:
Keep Your Stress Levels Low
Chronic high stress affects your body on a biological level.
High cortisol can affect your sex hormone production and lead to weight gain.
So while you make these adjustments to your food and activity levels, dont forget to focus on lowering your stress levels, both at home and work.
Yoga, journaling, and meditation are some simple, low-effort ways to lower your stress for the long-term.
These activities can also ensure that you hit this next tip too.
Understand The Keto Diet Is Different For Men And Women
Many women have reported getting their period back after a long absence and beating infertility on keto. Research also indicates that the ketogenic diet could be useful for treating hormonal disorders such as PCOS .
However, some women may experience adverse effects such as regaining weight or not losing weight at all. This is often due to hormonal imbalances, mainly from the sudden transition from high carb to a low carb diet.
If youre a woman, consider following tips 1 and 2 for easier transitioning into the keto diet. You may also want to keep your carbs between 40-50 grams per day to reduce hormonal side effects.
Another best approach is to consult your doctor before starting the diet, especially if you have any hormonal health conditions.
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The Best And Worst Fats To Eat On The Ketogenic Diet
Instead of potatoes or rice with your meal, opt for a nonstarchy veggie. Start cooking with more oil, such as olive or avocado oil. Realize that old dieting habits like making a plain skinless grilled chicken breast just don’t make sense on a keto diet because you wont get enough fat.
Slowly start pushing out carbs and getting in fat. If youre afraid of fat, a ketogenic diet wont work for you, she says.
Tip 4 Check For Foods You Omit Often Without Understanding Why
The keto diet plan is a high-fat, adequate-protein, low-carb diet that shares many resemblances with the Atkins as well as low-carb diet regimens. Still, it is different since it compels the body to rely upon fat as its key power resource rather than carbohydrates. In theory, this indicates its less complicated for our bodies to gain access to fat shops, which can be consumed when required.
For the keto diet regimen to be successful, you have to eat fewer carbohydrates as well as sugar. The keto diet plan needs a particular quantity of carbs from vegetables. Still, if you intend to go into ketosis, you require a limited quantity of carbs from veggies.
The objective of this area is not practically what foods are best for a ketogenic diet yet additionally regarding understanding why they are vital and what they do.
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Invest In Decent Tupperware To Supercharge Your Meal Prep
Tupperware will help take your Keto prep to the next level. Opt for various sizes to store main meals and snacks.
- Plastic – cheap, travel-friendly, not great for the environment.
- Glass – more expensive, not as travel-friendly.
- Bamboo – reasonably priced, travel-friendly, generally environmentally friendly.
Reduce Your Processed Food Intake
If youre just starting out on keto, keep it simple and avoid processed, packaged foods in the beginning while youre getting into ketosis. This is a good rule of thumb for any diet and can result in health benefits like improving heart health, reducing risks of some cancers and diabetes, as well having more energy and healthier skin.
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Plan Your Meals Ahead Of Time
One simple way to keep yourself on track with your diet is to plan out your meals on a weekly basis. When youre at home, you can follow a simple keto meal plan. But while youre traveling or attending events, plan to take snacks and pre-made meals.
Learning some beginner-friendly keto recipes can be a great way to kick off your first meal plan. You can keep your plan simple at first and add different recipes into the rotation when you feel like mixing things up. Or you could even try a keto meal delivery service like Green Chef to take the hassle out of planning and preparing your meals.
Regardless of how you do it, when you plan your meals in advance, youll avoid decision fatigue and reduce the temptation to eat something off-limits.
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Get Friendly With These Keto Flour Substitutes For Bread
Contrary to popular belief, going Keto doesn’t mean you have to give up delicious bread and baked goods forever.
If you havent met them already, coconut and almond flour are about to become two of your new best friends.
Here are some delicious recipes where they play a starring role:
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Always Check The Label
The expert said: Some foods make claims to be keto, low in sugar or no added sugar but in reality the overall make-up of the product is still not Keto friendly.
Never trust the claims, always make sure you read the label and understand what is in your food.
Look at the overall carb amount per serving of product to make sure it is low enough to keep you in Ketosis.
Remember to also look for other names for sugar like dextrose or sucrose and, of course, check for sweeteners.
Know The Carb Counts And Serving Sizes Of Foods
Most low carb diets only allow for 20 to 50 grams of carbohydrates per day. Because of this, it is essential that people following low-carb diets choose foods that have a lower carb count but a high nutritional value per serving.
The foods in the quantities listed below all contain approximately 15 g of carbs:
- 1 tennis ball sized apple or orange
- 1 cup of berries
- 1 slice of bread
- 1/3 cup of cooked rice
While the foods listed above all contain roughly equal amounts of carbohydrates, they are not all nutritionally equivalent. The dairy products on the list contain protein and vital nutrients, such as Vitamin D and calcium in addition to the carbohydrate content.
The fruit and vegetables also contain essential vitamins and minerals. Choosing whole-grain varieties of bread and rice will provide more nutrients than white varieties, even though the carb content is similar.
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Get Enough Quality Sleep
Poor sleep quality or inadequate sleep can throw your hormones out of whack and make it harder for you to lose weight and crush cravings.
Prioritize your sleep hygiene for more and better sleep:
- Put down all screens at least one hour before bed
- Sleep in a completely dark room
- Make sure your room is cool around 65°F
- Get yourself on a consistent sleep-wake schedule
- Get at least 7 hours of sleep per night
Start implementing these simple changes, and you wont just get more sleep, youll get better quality sleep. And that means fewer cravings and more energy production throughout your day.
Always Top Off Your Plate With A Drizzle Of Olive Oil Or Avocado Oil
One common reason many people fail or get frustrated with the keto diet is that theyre not getting enough fat .
You really have to vary your fat intake on a ketogenic diet. So a mistake that people will often make is that they just go to saturated fat, which is animal products and dairy, Mancinelli said.
One way to prevent that from happening is by adding a generous dose of olive oil or avocado oil to your meals, Mancinelli said. Olive oil is high in monounsaturated fatty acids, which are healthy fats, according to The Mayo Clinic. Avocado oil is rich in similar fatty acids, Healthline reported.
People are going overboard on the wrong types of fats, think bacon, deli meats, sausage, fatty meats, butter and lard, Tracy Lockwood Beckerman, RD, told Business Insider. This isnt good for heart health or blood pressure, and can even cause digestive issues, she said.
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Create Habits So That You Dont Have To Rely On Will Power
Willpower is a finite resource, so we want to preserve it as much as we can. To do this, it helps to set up systems and habits so your new behavior becomes automatic – like brushing your teeth.
Through the Carb Manager app, you can stay on top of healthy habits like meal prep, logging foods, and tracking body metrics.
What gets measured gets managed.
Success Tips For Keto Diet Results
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1. Prepare your home for Keto success.
When youre beginning a new eating plan, its really important to get organized for it. Get rid of the forbidden foods and stock your kitchen with Keto-friendly options. If youre a snack stasher, dont forget to clear out those spots too your purse, your bedside table, the back of the freezer where you hide ice cream from the kids.
Pro tip: Hang up a dry erase board on your fridge. Make note of Keto-approved simple meal and snack ideas that you have on hand. When youre hungry, its so easy to forget what you have available . Grabbing whatever you can find from a fast food restaurant or convenience store can lead you down the wrong path.
2. Plan ahead.
Now is the time to embrace meal planning. Its a great idea anyway but even more so when youre beginning a new way of eating. Plan your meals and snacks ahead of time as much as possible. This will help you avoid that last minute theres nothing to eat feeling and help you with your grocery list as well.
Need help with meal planning? Here is an amazing resource to teach you how to meal plan.
Pro tip: Aiming for meals that are a maximum of 5 grams of carbs each is a great way to stay on track and balance your carb intake throughout the day.
3. Learn your portion sizes.
4. Use a daily food journal.
5. Find a Keto buddy.
6. Look for Keto-friendly alternatives when eating out.
7. Manage your stress levels.
10. Be prepared for the Keto flu.
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You May Experience Changes In Digestion
The most common gastrointestinal side effects for the keto diet include diarrhea, acid reflux, nausea, and constipation, says Vandenberg.
Constipation often happens because the keto diet prohibits whole grains and starchy vegetables as well as limits fruits to very small servings of only low-carb fruit. All of these foods are a good source of fiber, which makes your stool easier to pass.
- Fat: 70% to 90% of total calories
- Protein: 1 g/kg of body weight
- Carbohydrates: Remaining calories
Gastrointestinal “symptoms can persist for as long as someone is on the diet,” says Vandenberg. “Others may adjust to the diet changes and GI symptoms may resolve.”
Invest In A Food Scale
Weighing the food you eat can be a huge difference on the ketogenic diet, especially as a beginner.
Many people like to eyeball the amount of food theyre eating but doing so can cause you to overeat and kick you out of ketosis.
The difference between burning glucose or ketones as your primary source of fuel can be that one extra tablespoon of almond butter that you eyeballed.
For comparison, just two extra tablespoons of almond butter comes out to an additional 200 calories and 6 grams of carbs.
Once you get used to what proper portions look like, then you can begin to eyeball your meals.
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Establish Your Macronutrient Ratios
“First, figure out your macronutrient ratios for ketosis,” says Miller, who strongly advises working with a dietitian before taking the keto plunge. “There are no set guidelines for how many carbs, fat, and protein is needed on the keto diet. However, I’ve seen some keto diets promote as little as 15 grams of carbs per day .”
She adds: “If you want to actually follow a true keto diet , the carb intake should be as little carbs as needed to avoid going out of ketosis, but this is very hard to track. Since the keto diet is high fat, I’ve seen some keto diets have as much as 80% calories from fat. But again, there are no set guidelines. To figure out these ratios, it’s best to speak with a registered dietitian.”
Be Prepared: Create The Perfect Keto Environment
As with anything in life, preparation is key to succeeding with your goals. So setting yourself up and creating the perfect environment for reaching your keto goals is essential for motivating you to sustain a long-term success plan.
The battle between your emotional brain versus your rational brain is a tough one to fight when it comes to making the right food choices. What we see, smell, feel or think can trigger a strong response that can make dieting incredibly challenging as the initial euphoria and willpower of the new diet fades into oblivion.
It is hard to remain motivated, strong-willed, or disciplined in those moments when the uncontrollable cravings become too much and we cave in. This is the main reason why sustainable weight loss is so difficult and one of the fundamental mechanisms behind weight regain. We stick to the diet for a few months, but those potent food triggers and desires win out in the long run. Our rational mind may win some battles at first, but our emotional mind will usually win the war.
So, making it as easy as you can within the environment you operate within is paramount to successful food choices.
One of the best ways to address this common issue is to change your food environment so that it influences you to make better choices instead of unhealthy ones. This weight loss hack will remove the triggers that cause many of the internal conflicts between your emotional mind and rational mind.
Changing Your Home Food Environment
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Different Types Of Ketogenic Diets
There are several versions of the ketogenic diet, including:
- Standard ketogenic diet : This is a very low carb, moderate protein and high fat diet. It typically contains 70% fat, 20% protein, and only 10% carbs .
- Cyclical ketogenic diet : This diet involves periods of higher carb refeeds, such as 5 ketogenic days followed by 2 high carb days.
- Targeted ketogenic diet : This diet allows you to add carbs around workouts.
- High protein ketogenic diet: This is similar to a standard ketogenic diet, but includes more protein. The ratio is often 60% fat, 35% protein, and 5% carbs.
However, only the standard and high protein ketogenic diets have been studied extensively. Cyclical or targeted ketogenic diets are more advanced methods and primarily used by bodybuilders or athletes.
The information in this article mostly applies to the standard ketogenic diet , although many of the same principles also apply to the other versions.
There are several versions of the keto diet. The standard version is the most researched and most recommended.
Your Energy Levels May Dip
Experts say it’s normal to experience some short-term fatigue after you first start the keto diet. This is because your body is slowly adapting to a different metabolic state that doesn’t rely on carbs for fuel.
“As your body adjusts to using fat as fuel instead of carbohydrates, your energy levels may return to normal,” says Doebrich, adding that this fatigue will usually last one to three weeks.
However, Doebrich says that people who regularly engage in high-intensity exercise may continue to feel fatigued after workouts if they’re not consuming enough calories. Since the keto diet is very high in fat, which tends to be extremely filling, you may stop eating before you get an adequate amount of energy to power you through those workouts.
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