We’ve all heard of the keto diet by now. This diet has swept the nation due to its effectiveness. This diet is a low-carbohydrate diet that involves putting your body into ketosis in the hopes of losing weight. It’s a hard adjustment for some, but once you get the hang of it, it’ll become so much easier.
What does the keto diet involve?
Obviously, the keto diet involves more than just eating low-carb. You have to consume the right amounts of healthy fats, quality protein, and carbs to hit the right balance to get you into ketosis but not harm your body.
The ideal percentages are as follows:
● Carbohydrates: 5-10%
● Proteins: 20-25%
● Fat: 70-80% of calories
The exact caloric intake and macronutrient ratios you aim for will depend on the following factors:
● Desired amount of fat loss
● Goals you set for yourself
● Your health
● Your level of physical activity
The idea behind putting yourself into ketosis is so that your body will burn fat instead of glucose as its main energy source. Getting into the rhythm of this diet, but we’re here to help make it easier.
1) Do your research
When starting the keto diet, research the types of food you can and should eat to keep yourself in healthy, effective ketosis. You should be sure to incorporate plenty of vegetables with a low-carb count like broccoli, leafy greens, and cabbage. You also want to include quality proteins like grass-fed beef, wild-caught salmon, and organ meats.
High-quality fats are a huge part of the ketosis, as well. Some of these fats include coconut oil, avocado oil, MCT oil, fatty meats, and avocados. Some high-quality full-fat dairy that is free of antibiotics is also good to work into your diet, as well as low-sugar fruits like blueberries.
2) Determine your macros
You need to determine the exact number of macronutrients you need to consume. Every person is created differently with different needs, activity levels, goals, and body types; you have to determine what exact nutrients you need. Some need 20g of net carbs a day to have success on the keto diet, but others can’t go over this limit at all.
There are many macronutrient calculators available online to help you determine the personal carb-, protein-, and fat-intake, and help you determine your daily caloric intake. For the first few weeks of your keto diet, don’t worry about tracking these macros exactly or sticking too hard to the restricted calories unless your goal is weight loss. Once you’re comfortable with keto, you can scale them down.
3) Get yourself into ketosis quickly
In order to get any of the benefits of the keto diet, you have to enter the state of ketosis. Once you’ve gotten used to keeping to your macros, it’s time to speed up your transition with the following:
● Take exogenous ketones: these are supplemental ketones that help to raise the level of ketones in your blood within an hour.
● Fasting: An intermittent fasting approach of fasting for 16 hours a day and eating only within an 8-hour window can help to raise your ketone levels.
● More exercise: You can burn off glycogen and speed up your adaptation to ketosis by exercising more.
One thing you have to be prepared for is the keto flu. This is a temporary condition that some experience as they first make the transition into ketosis. To limit your symptoms and maybe avoid keto flu entirely, eat real food and stay hydrated, take electrolytes, and continue to take exogenous ketones.
4) Test your ketones
Believe it or not, ketosis is a metabolic state that is entirely measurable. The only way to determine if you’re actually in ketosis is to test your ketone levels with test strips or a blood meter. This will help you determine if you need to make adjustments to your caloric-intake or your macros. Keeping a food journal can also help you keep in ketosis and see where you went wrong if you fall out of it.
5) Maintain ketosis
The last step is to stick with it. Keep yourself in ketosis, keep checking your ketones, and don’t diverge from your structured diet and allotted macros. You’ll start to reap the many benefits of the keto diet the longer you stay on it.