Common Mistakes In Keto Diet
Are you giving it your all on the keto diet, but is not getting the results you want? Do you ever feel frustrated by how much sacrifice and discipline you have endured only to see that you didn’t lose weight or you haven’t achieved your goal? Or maybe you initially lost weight on keto but somehow notice that you’ve plateaued overtime.
Don’t worry. We get you. We know how frustrating it can get o give your all to something only to find out you’re far from what you want to achieve. But if you’re following a keto diet and you’re experiencing these problems, it can be a signal that there is something wrong.
This article will help you explore the top mistakes keto dieters make when following the keto diet. These mistakes may be the reasons why you’re not seeing the results you want.
What is a keto diet?
If you’ve signed up for a keto diet, then you already probably know what this is. But in case you don’t, following a keto diet means signing up for a very low carb, high in healthy fats, and moderate in protein type of diet. What do we mean by this?
The Keto diet works by restricting your body of carbs and increasing your healthy fat intake. The diet works by changing how your body processes typically carbs and sources fuel. A typical individual is used to incorporating high amounts of fat in his/her daily diet. By taking in high amounts of fat, your body converts those fats into glucose, which are then used as your body’s energy source. However, the keto diet works to change this.
In a standard keto diet, your macronutrient intake looks like this:
70-75% of fats
20-25% of protein
5-10% of carbohydrates
How does the keto diet work?
What’s the reason behind this ratio? In a keto diet, your body is trained to consume high amounts of healthy fats instead of carbohydrates. When you do this, your body runs out of glucose stores and instead sources fuel from elsewhere. This is where your fat stores become useful. Instead of sourcing from glucose, your body now converts those fats into ketones as your body’s fuel.
When your body successfully does this, your body will enter into the metabolic state of ketosis– the goal in every keto diet.
Common Mistakes you commit when in a keto diet.
1. You are not consuming enough fat.
The keto diet is not just about the restriction in your consumption of total carbohydrates. Instead, it is a combination of the consumption of specific macronutrient ratios. This means that your keto diet is not only a low-carb diet but a high-fat diet as well. It is recommended that 75% of the calories you are eating should come from healthy fats, 20% from protein, and only 5% from carbohydrates.
Since the keto diet is mostly about eating a large amount and the right kind of healthy fats, you might have difficulty adapting, especially when you are not used to eating a lot of fat. If you are not used to eating fats, you can adjust your diet bit by bit until you are comfortable with it. It is a good start to create meal plans and to gradually increase your fat intake until you can estimate what specific fat percentage your body is comfortable consuming. If you are still unsure about the particular amount of fat you need to eat, you can use fat calculators available online, or you can consult your registered dietitian, nutritionist, or physician for help.
Also, when you are not reaching the required amount of fats you need to eat, chances are, you will likely have a difficult time reaching ketosis–a significant effect of the keto diet that will make you lose weight. You can achieve ketosis only if your body has adapted to using fats as its primary fuel source after it has fully depleted your glycogen reserves. Once you are in ketosis, you will likely start shedding off those extra body fat you want to lose. Moreover, once you have worked out your personalized fat macronutrient ratio, and your body has adjusted it, it will also help you control your carb cravings and allow you to maintain being in the state of ketosis.
2. You are not eating the right type of fats.
As mentioned, a keto diet is a high-fat diet. However, eating the right amount of fat is not enough alone. You also have to eat the correct type of fat. One of the reasons why you may not have seen the desired results you want is that you have been eating a large amount of saturated fat and trans fats. Knowing the difference between the type of fats you need to eat can help you make better progress in your keto diet.
Healthy fats from pure fat sources are the right kind of fats that should make up most of your fat intake. Healthy fats consist of monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats.
These types of fats help your body increase your right cholesterol level. Some examples of these foods include avocado, nuts, olive oil, coconut butter, ghee, and fatty fish. In contrast, consuming too much-saturated fats and trans fats can be detrimental as they can increase your bad cholesterol level. This effect can likely increase your risk of Type 2 Diabetes and heart disease. Examples of fats you need to avoid are vegetable oils, canola oils, and processed meats.
Although it is entirely impossible to eliminate saturated fats and trans fats from your diet, always double-check not to consume too much of it and make sure that it does not comprise most of your diet. Remember, if you want to see stellar results in your keto diet, make it a habit and routine to check if you are eating the right amount and right kind of fat.
3. You are overeating protein.
One of the most common mistakes keto dieters make is overeating protein. Yes, in a keto diet, it may seem like it’s all about reducing carbs and increasing healthy fats. However, we often overlook the role protein plays in the diet.
How does overeating protein affect your keto diet? Your body converts your protein surplus into glucose. This process is called gluconeogenesis.
The gluconeogenesis is a natural process whereby your body converts energy from proteins and fats into glucose when glucose is not available. In a low carb diet like the ketogenic diet, gluconeogenesis occurs at different rates to keep your body functioning.
In most high-carb diets, gluconeogenesis works at a much slower rate because glucose is readily available, and hence the need for extra glucose is low. However, as we said earlier, in a keto diet, your energy fuel is sourced from healthy fats. Your carb and protein surplus are then stored to be used for muscle recovery and support when your body needs a stable supply of carbs.
Eating extra protein here and there when starting a keto diet contributes to excess glucose, which makes reaching ketosis slower or even prevents your body from getting it. In a keto diet, it’s not only essential to keep track of your fat and carbohydrate intake. It’s equally important to be mindful of your overall protein intake.
4. Not drinking enough water.
There’s a reason why water is considered as the world’s essential element. Water is not crucial for your body’s regular operation but is also necessary for your body to burn fat. If you’re drinking less water than you naturally should, your metabolism will slow down, halting weight loss.
Drinking at least 64 ounces of water daily helps your body burn fat, circulate nutrients, and flush out your body’s toxins. If you’re new to the diet, you have to drink water even more because your body loses too much water when you start taking in fewer carbs.
Tips to control your cravings and reduce your appetite
1. Pay attention to hidden carbohydrates.
Are you following the low carb diet while increasing your fat diet to improve your satiety but still finding yourself perplexed because you still want to eat more? Finding no error in your calorie count and macronutrient ratios, but still, you cannot suppress your appetite? Sometimes, it is not your diet or your macronutrient intake that is at fault but its because of hidden carbohydrates.
Yes, hidden carbohydrates. There are food packages and different food groups that contain hidden carbohydrates that you might not have been aware of! Hidden carbohydrates are proven to have the power to bring back your old cravings. Thus, the primary reason as to why you cannot suppress your appetite. Hence, it is imperative to check the labels of all the foods you recently bought if they have it in them. Also, another trick to avoid consuming them is by preparing your meal. Nothing can beat hands-on and personalized meal plans. Personalized meal plans are important in tracking and measuring your macronutrient ratios accurately and avoiding hidden carbohydrates altogether!
2. Practice mindful eating.
Each time you reach out for a snack, try to ask yourself the following questions:
- Do I feel bored?
- Am I sad or lonely?
- Do I feel anxious or stressed?
In times of uncertainty, the tendency of your body to go on stress eating is more common. When feeling this way, don’t lose track of the fact that you hold power over your mind and body.
When you practice mindful eating, you will experience the following benefits:
- Less eating
- Enjoyed meals
- Improved digestion
Suppose you feel hungry and feels like eating a snack; practice eating slowly. Did you know that your brain takes about 20 minutes to process that you’re full? Eating mindfully and slowly gives your mind the time to think if you’re already full. Doing this makes you less likely to fall under the trap of overeating.
One good practice is to allow yourself to wait for about 20 minutes before taking that next food. During that time, you may come to realize you’re already full.
Do you still have issues in your keto diet?
If you have done everything, and you are still not making any progress in your keto diet, it is high time for you to call for professional help. They can conduct overall health assessments and identify specific areas such as nutrient deficiencies or hidden and unknown health conditions you might not have known that can be the cause of why you are not making any progress. You may find this situation disappointing and frustrating, but you have to remain positive and continue to pursue the diet. Following the diet correctly and adequately can do wonders in your weight loss journey. After all, going to keto is just another step in achieving the greater goal– to be happy and to live a healthier lifestyle.
Disclaimer: This article imparts general information only and not a replacement for qualified medical advice. It’s best to consult your specialist or your registered dietitian, nutritionist, or medical professionals for more details.