Did you decide to get into the keto diet for weight loss purposes? It’s a great idea. Keto dieting is a tasty and sustainable way to lose weight and establish good dietary habits.
It’s different from other diets in that we have to watch our ketones closely; some even keep track of their ketone levels.
Once you’ve reached the state of ketosis, you might think you are on an easy street, and you don’t need to do anything else.
Other common beliefs that new dieters have about keto include:
- Metabolism speeds up on keto.
- The body automatically gets into fat-burning mode.
- Carb and sugar cravings vanish immediately.
- Calorie counting is a thing of the past.
- You can eat until you’re stuffed and drop weight.
These are half-truths at best, but they’re definitely embellished a bit. If you took these as gospel and failed to do your own research, you will not meet your weight loss goals at all, even if you are in ketosis on a constant basis.
This article seeks to help all of you who are diligently sticking to a keto diet but not seeing weight loss results.
Chances are, you’re already doing everything correctly. You just need to make a few tweaks here and there, and the body fat will start to burn right up. It’s just a matter of restructuring what you’re eating.
Let’s start by exploring a few common misconceptions about keto. These could be the reason you are not seeing results.
Misconception #1: Calorie Counting Isn’t A Requirement
The basic principle of weight loss is simple: You have to burn more calories than you take in.
That’s it! Operate at a caloric deficit, and you will see weight loss. Easy as pie, right?
Sure, but what about hunger, cravings, emotional eating, family gatherings, and days when you just want a big meal?
“I will just eat keto-friendly meals,” you argue. “In ketosis, I can eat as much bacon and butter as I desire.”
Incorrect. Calories still matter on keto.
However, not all calories are equal in value. Keto dieting makes it a lot easier to operate at a caloric deficit than most diets.
Keto diets are natural appetite suppressors. They block ghrelin, which is the hunger hormone of the body. Ghrelin is our body’s biggest offender when it comes to weight loss. As we lose weight, our bodies release heaps more of the hormone, which makes us hungrier and thus harder to stick to our diets.
But keto? Nope. Appetite is safely suppressed, and it gets rid of that ghrelin increase. It is a huge help- we can utilize natural foods to safely keep our appetites at bay and keep willpower at a high. There will be times when you get hungry, but you can always use a healthy keto snack or shake to keep you going.
How Many Calories Do I Need?
Make use of the PerfectKeto Calculator to figure out your personal caloric needs. Of course, talking to a doctor is best about figuring your specific needs, but this will give you some ideas.
The best news is, we get to enjoy tasty foods like steak, bacon, and other red meats. And by eating them in moderation, we can still achieve our goals.
Misconception #2: The Body’s Always in Fat Burning Mode in Ketosis
Some dieters think that once they get into ketosis, the journey is over. They will just ride the wave until they are slim and fit. After all, they have kept carbs to a minimum, and they’re no longer using sugar as energy, but instead fat.
It’s like a candle burning at both ends, right?
The answer is yes. When you avoid eating carbs, your liver turns to fat-burning as a means of powering your body onward. Fat is converted into ketones and fatty acids, and then they are transported to cells to be used as fuel. It is known as ketosis, and the body is utilizing fat instead of carbs for energy.
But in ketosis, dietary fat is burned at first, followed by body fat afterward.
One does not immediately lose weight by being in ketosis round the clock. You have to be at a caloric deficit so that the metabolism depletes its stores of dietary fat and then begins running on stored body fat.
Your metabolism will go up as a result of ketosis. Those that are in ketosis burn about 300 more calories more than those who are not. This is an increase of about 15% of one’s metabolic rate. We don’t know why this is the case, but it could be due to greater thermogenesis or the body producing greater heat while resting.
Even if you are not always burning up body fat while in ketosis, you can certainly burn more body fat each day, which makes it easier and faster to hit those weight loss targets. And, since keto naturally keeps our hunger suppressed, we are less likely to be tempted and overeat without thinking!
Misconception #3: One Must Be in Ketosis Constantly for Weight Loss
A lot of you are going to be measuring your blood ketones as you follow your weight loss progress. You may notice that your ketone levels fall underneath .7 mmol/L. You then might panic, thinking you’ve done something incorrectly.
After all, you wouldn’t want to fall out of ketosis, right? That would NOT be conducive to your goals!
However, you should not worry so much about this. Ketones matter, but results matter more. What do we mean?
It means that ketogenic dieting is not a cookie-cutter experience. Your experience will differ from mine and your friend’s. Maybe it is possible that keto is not for you, and that’s OK! Be kind to yourself as you make this journey to better health.
Be Honest with Yourself
How are you feeling? Do you feel healthier and more in control of your habits? Do you feel greater amounts of energy, greater stamina, good about yourself? Have you lost a bit of weight?
If you can say yes to any of the above, you’re winning already. Ketone levels matter, but they aren’t everything.
So no, you don’t have to be in ketosis at all hours of the day to lose weight. If you are already losing the weight, you’re succeeding. If having carbs makes you nuts and makes you want more carbs, then keep ketosis going. If you find that ketosis doesn’t make you happy, have a few carbs if it helps you see better results.
Indeed, dieting is very personal, and you may need to try a few approaches before you find what works best!
Quick & Dirty Guide: Losing Weight While on Keto
- Calculate your calorie needs using the keto calculator we linked above. You can then see where your calories should come from as far as carbs, fats, and proteins are concerned. Stick to those figures for a couple of weeks and see if you drop some weight. And don’t forget to check out our reviews to find keto products that will keep you feeling great and satiated.
- Try mindfulness practices. I find that journaling really helps me keep track of my thoughts, goals, and concerns. By putting pen to paper, I am unleashing all my little inner dragons and bringing them out in the open. I can better focus on taming those dragons, if you will, and moving onto bigger tasks of the day. For example, I was worried about a family gathering where I knew keto-friendly foods would be absent. I opted to bring my own keto-friendly dish to pass and enjoy while visiting with my group. By journaling my decision, I was able to better remember my strategy again for future parties and gatherings.
- Focus on your results rather than ketone levels. You don’t have to be in fat-burning mode at all times. Ketosis does not automatically equal fat burning, and it is not a magic spell that works for all dieters. What does matter is getting results and feeling good. Try out different strategies until you find a comfortable and satisfying way to get the results you want, even if it means eating carbs that take you out of ketosis.
Don’t Forget to Work Out!
Some keto dieters think that weight will fall off automatically if they are in ketosis. Worse, I’ve seen those weight-loss centers pop up and advertise what is essentially the ketogenic diet… and their radio ads say things like, “Exercise not necessary!”
I believe exercise is necessary because it promotes stress relief, helps you feel stronger, helps you burn more calories, and increases self-confidence.
And it is common knowledge that exercise helps people lose weight. Even a kid can tell you that!
So, don’t neglect the need to work out. If you are lucky enough to belong to a gym, carve out time for yourself. If you cannot get to the gym, work out by walking or running outdoors. You can jump rope or do workouts from YouTube with no equipment needed in the privacy of your home.
There are no excuses to avoid working out. Given that you need just 30 minutes a day for 5 days a week, step to it. You will feel great, and you can almost feel that progress right away once the workout is complete.
Thank you for taking the time to read about why you might not be losing weight in ketosis. The Keto diet is amazing in that we get to eat some of the most delicious foods and still drop weight. However, too much of it can set you back, and you won’t meet your goals if you’re consuming too much food.
So, be mindful of your intake, keep track of how you feel, and get that daily exercise in. Remember that no two experiences are the same, and what works for someone else might not work for you. Good luck!