This is a sponsored guest post.
You have been enjoying the ketogenic lifestyle for a while now. Everything seems awesome: foods are delicious, fat is melting off, you have high levels of focus and lots of energy. But at one point, the tables turned and your weight loss have seemed to hit a plateau. You may be wondering, what went wrong?
The keto diet can be very effective when it comes to losing weight. Since you are cutting out carbs from your daily menu, your body cannot use it as energy and is forced to find new energy sources – fat. Most people who are following properly the fat burning diet, find that they are losing weight consistently and they still feel satisfied and with reduced appetite.
No matter how good you are at managing your weight, there come times when things just don’t seem to be working. There could be several reasons for that. In fact, there are many misconceptions often made, that will lead to weight loss plateau or even gaining weight and feeling awful.
Here are 7 most common reasons, why your weight loss has plateaued. Often, you need just a few simple tweaks to your diet, that will put your pack on the fat burning path and feeling physically and mentally sharp.
- Eating too many calories
Keto diet has often been marketed as a diet where you don’t need to count calories to lose weight. Just as long as you cut out the carbs and eat enough fats you will be fine. At the end of the day, weight loss is achieved thanks to calorie restriction, aka you will end up eating fewer calories than you burn. Diets are just a method to keep your body in a caloric deficit. It is easier to do with some diets, and it’s way harder to do with other diets.
The reason why keto diet is so popular is that high-fat foods will suppress appetite and you don’t need to fight with constant hunger feeling. You can eat so-called “keto friendly foods” and still not lose weight.
And keep your eye open for snacks. They can break your daily calorie bank fairly quickly if not followed correctly. For example, a handful of nuts can consist of 200-300 calories, which will easily add up.
Keep in mind, that your weight loss may have stopped because you have already lost enough weight and your calculated macros are not fit anymore. Just recalculate your goal macros with your new lower weight and you will be right on track in no time.
Also, keep an eye out for your fiber intake, as this is a common deficiency that you will experience during the keto diet.
You definitely don’t have to go crazy with counting every calorie in your diet, but you should at least at the start keep track of what you eat and how much and adjust accordingly.
- Not eating enough fat
Most people are convinced that eating fat will make them fat. That is the main reason why in the grocery stores there are so many low-fat products right? Everyone knows that fat has almost double the calories per gram than carbohydrates or protein, that is the reason, right? Well, not exactly. No wonder people think like that, as that is what big companies have marketed for decades. Let’s get one thing clear. One will gain fat thanks to excessive calories.
Fat is the foundation of the keto diet. It’s vital, to succeed with the ketogenic diet, that your menu consists of at least 70% of fats. Without fats, you will not get your body into ketosis and your body will not convert into the fat burning state. That is why it’s important to roughly keep track on what you eat and how much, so you can adjust accordingly your macronutrients intake.
If you have tried almost any diet in your life, you probably are familiar with the term cheat day. Cheat day is supposed to give you and your body a small break from dieting, and it should improve the overall results. Although this might or might not be true, cheating is not suitable for every kind of diet, e.g. the keto diet.
The reason why you cannot cheat during the keto diet is that even a small amount of carbohydrates will kick you out of ketosis. And when you are out of ketosis your body cannot produce more ketone bodies and burn fat. Instead, it will be dealing with carbs and glucose.
You need to commit when doing keto. Don’t allow yourself to cheat. You need to find ways to make the diet enjoyable for yourself (plan things ahead, find appropriate snacks, etc.).
- Not listening to your body
Keto is often marketed as “eat as much as you want” diet, which is not definitely true. What many people don’t realize is that you should be eating only as much as your body needs. You shouldn’t need to fight with hunger, but you also shouldn’t overeat. For you to burn fat and enjoy the diet, you need to start listening to your body and stop eating when you are full.
Using smaller plates has shown to be an effective method for portion control. Before you start with an excessive snacking marathon, ask yourself, if you really need a snack or you are just bored. Just try to listen and understand your body.
- Not planning
To succeed with the keto diet, you need to follow the diet at all times. You need to be in ketosis when you are at work, at home or going out with your friends. It may be difficult to adapt to the situation and find keto friendly foods in restaurants or grocery stores. This is why you should plan things ahead and be prepared.
Fortunately, it is pretty easy to adapt your lifestyle to the ketogenic lifestyle. There are loads of keto snacks (like cheese cubes, bacon, beef jerky, etc.) you can take with to wherever you are going. If you haven’t thought ahead what to eat in a restaurant, you may be tempted to order your favorite burger or dessert. Thankfully, it’s pretty easy to find fatty foods from restaurants. You can also easily swap carbs for leafy greens and call it a day.
Take time to plan your meals what and where you are going to eat. Before going to a restaurant, get to know the restaurant menu and what would suit best for your ketogenic lifestyle. Oh, and definitely plan out and take snacks with you to wherever you are going. Having planned your daily eating will make following the keto diet a lot easier.
- Protein intake
One of the blind spots people often have when they start out with keto is the protein intake. The majority of people just simply eat too much lean protein and will be kicked out of ketosis because of that. Protein can turn into “carbs” thanks to a metabolic process called gluconeogenesis. This spikes your insulin levels and reduced ketone levels.
By far the easiest way to avoid getting kicked out of ketosis is by tracking your protein intake, it doesn’t need to be exactly by the gram, but a general understanding is needed. When choosing meats, choose the fattier cuts and less muscle meat.
Track your protein intake and make sure to keep it around 15% or less of total calories. Keep your eye on your ketone levels, so you know you are in ketosis and eat higher fat protein sources like fatty beef.
- You drink regularly
Last but not least, alcohol. Some alcoholic drinks are low in carbs, so theoretically you can have them. But it’s not so simple. Alcohol can and will affect your weight loss in other detrimental ways (assuming that you can and will choose low-carb alcohol sources). Your body will always process alcohol first. Alcohol will mess with your hormonal balance and can postpone your results.
The other problem with alcohol is that it will increase your hunger and cravings, which makes it more difficult to resist for carbs and overeating. You might feel that small glass of wine every other week can’t do much harm, but in reality, this can be the reason why your weight loss has plateaued.
Author bio: Alex Reed is a health enthusiast, who started Bodyketosis.com with a mission to help you to take charge of your weight and health using the ketogenic lifestyle.