7 Basic Keto Diet Rules to Speed Up Weight Loss
1. Limit Carbs to 50 Grams per Day
The key to following a keto diet would be to eat 50 grams of carbs per day or less.
This means that your main source of carbohydrate intake will be coming from fresh vegatables and fruits (and not grains, breads, sweets, etc.).
Ensure is how many carbohydrates are in the vegatables and fruits we like to eat?
For instance, 1 cup of berries has 15g of carbohydrates and 1 cup of raw veggies (such as carrots, cucumbers, lettuce, bell peppers, Brussel sprouts, leafy greens, ) has 5g of carbohydrates.
You may have come across net carbs. What does that mean?
Net carbs are the carbs that actually raise blood sugar.
They are calculated by subtracting the grams of fiber from the total grams of carbohydrates in a food.
The reason being the fiber (which is technically a carb) is not digestible by your body and therefore does not contribute to increased blood sugar and the resulting insulin secretion.
Net Carbs = Total carbs (grams) – fiber (grams) – sugar alcohols (grams)
Remember, limit your total grams of NET CARBs to 50g per day or less for optimal ketosis and the associated health benefits (including weight loss).
What Are Sugar Alcohols?
Sugar alcohols are molecules that add the sweet taste to foods without adding the sugar molecule that our body uses for energy.
Sugar alcohols are either partially digested or indigestible by the body and therefore they can usually be subtracted from the total number of carbohydrates to achieve the net carbs.
However, there are a few sugar alcohols that do raise the blood sugar and has to be counted in the total carbs.
The sugar alcohols that can be subtracted from total carbs include:
The sugar alcohols that cannot be subtracted from total carbs include:
2. Eat Plenty of Healthy Fats
The body uses fat for energy instead of glucose for energy while following the keto diet.
Since the keto diet calls for such a high intake of fat, you will need to get many of your fat from healthy fats, such as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.
These represent the fats that promote overall heart health by lowering your risk of heart disease and stroke.
You need to limit your intake of saturated and trans fats, as these increase your risk of heart disease and other associated illnesses.
Increase your intake of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats from the foods listed below:
Monounsaturated fats (2):
- Olive oil
- Avocado oil
- Peanut oil
- Sesame oil
- Safflower oil
- Peanut butter
- Many seeds
Polyunsaturated fats (3):
- Soybean oil
- Corn oil
- Sunflower oil
- Sunflower seeds
Saturated fats (4):
- coconut oil/ coconut butter
- palm oil
- palm kernel oil
- animal fat
- lard and cream (such as cream cheese)
3. Focus on Non-Starchy Veggies
Find numerous types of non-starchy vegetables to put in your diet. These represent the starchy vegetables to step away from:
- Winter squash (butternut, acorn, spaghetti, pumpkin)
The remainder of the vegetables not listed above would be classified as non-starchy veggies.
This means they don’t contribute many carbs to your total daily carb intake.
These veggies include foods such as:
- Brussel sprouts
- green beans
- snap peas.
Most of these foods can be consumed without contributing a significant rise in blood glucose.
Additionally, these non-starchy vegetables are a great resource of fiber and will help keep your GI system moving!
4. Eat Protein in Moderation
Protein is a major component of a balanced diet.
But you will need to consume a moderate amount of protein on a keto diet because protein can be converted to glucose if consumed more than what the body needs.
An average person should consume the recommended intake of 0.8g/(kg body weight) of protein per day.
This will help ensure you will get adequate protein to continue the essential functions of the body and to also make sure protein is not being consumed in excess and therefore being converted to glucose for energy.
5. Try Intermittent Fasting With Keto
Fasting can aide in the maintenance of a state of ketosis because fasting utilizes the body’s stores for energy.
Intermittent fasting is a set time frame (i.e. >8 hours) for which you deprive the body of food to be able to force the body to utilize the fat stores for energy.
Typical schedules of daily intermittent fasting include windows of time such as 8-10 hours of eating, with the other hours during the day being fasted.
Intermittent fasting has been indicated in weight loss, improved brain function, and increased energy.
Water can be consumed while fasting and is actually encouraged during a fast, but all other food and drinks has to be limited to hours of non-fasting, as outline by your daily fasting window.
6. Plan Your Meals Ahead
Plan, Plan, Plan! I can’t stress this enough when following the keto diet.
Maybe you have gotten to the point where you feel that you will eat almost anything because you were so hungry?
This is just what we should attempt to avoid, especially while following the keto diet.
The reason being it’s very easy to take your body out of ketosis with just a quick “snack” that you so desperately are craving.
Planning ahead your complete meals and snacks is crucial to being able to maintain a state of ketosis and utilize fat for energy.
Cooperating with family members or friends following the diet are a good idea to create a keto meal plan that may help you achieve your weight loss goals.
7. Know-How to Get Over ‘ Keto Flu’
The ‘ keto flu’is a cluster of symptoms that occur within the first few weeks of starting the keto diet.
The symptoms most commonly linked to the ‘ keto flu’include headache, fatigue, nausea, dizziness, gastrointestinal discomfort, and brain fog (5).
These symptoms generally last anywhere from 1-4 weeks in duration.