I’m sure all of you have heard about the Keto Diet before; it’s been around for a long time and absolutely has a ton of hype around it still.
The first time I heard about Keto, I was extremely skeptical.
Eat just healthy fats and lean protein?
Less than 30 carbs a day? It sounded so simple on paper, so it must be a gimmick, right?
Definitely not. This is the best way to lose 40 pounds I’ve found on my keto journey!
Table Of Contents
- 1 What Is The Keto Diet?
- 2 Benefits Of The Keto Diet
- 3 Keto Diet Results In 8 Weeks
- 4 Keto Diet Plan To Lose 40 Pounds
- 5 Weight Gain On Keto?
- 6 Does exercise speed up weight loss in ketosis?
- 7 You Need More Electrolytes
- 8 Conclusion
What Is The Keto Diet?
The keto, or ketogenic diet, is a high-fat, low-carb diet that’s designed to put your body into a state of ketosis. Now, I know that might sound a little confusing, but bear with me!
When you’re on the ketogenic diet, you’re cutting way back on carbs and increasing your fat intake. The idea is that your body will start burning fat for fuel instead of carbs, and that can lead to weight loss and other health benefits.
But the real magic happens when your body enters ketosis, which is a metabolic state where your body is using ketones (a type of molecule produced by the liver) for energy instead of glucose (which comes from carbs).
Now, I don’t want to get too technical, but basically, being in ketosis can have a lot of benefits for your body and brain. Some people find that they have more energy, clearer thinking, and better focus when they’re in ketosis.
Plus, since you’re burning fat for fuel, you may find that you lose weight more easily than you would on a traditional diet.
Of course, the ketogenic diet isn’t for everyone, but if you’re looking for a way to lose weight and improve your overall health, the keto diet might be worth checking out!
Benefits Of The Keto Diet
The ketogenic diet has been shown to have a number of potential benefits, although it’s important to keep in mind that everyone’s body is different, and what works for one person might not work for another.
Here are some of the potential benefits of keto that I’ve noticed myself.
- Weight Loss – One of the main reasons people try keto is to lose weight. When you’re in ketosis, your body is burning fat for fuel instead of glucose, which can lead to weight loss.
- Improved Blood Sugar Control – Since keto is low in carbohydrates, it can help regulate blood sugar levels in people with diabetes or other blood sugar issues.
- Reduced Inflammation – Some research suggests that the keto diet may help reduce inflammation in the body, which can have a number of health benefits. I’ve noticed aches and pains I’ve had went away while on keto myself.
- Better Brain Function – This is probably the biggest benefit I’ve found other than just the weight loss – the improved focus, mental clarity, and energy when you’re in ketosis. Your mind doesn’t feel foggy and as long as your electrolytes and hydration is on point, you don’t experience a crash in energy at all.
Burning Fats Instead Of Carbs For Fuel
When consuming a very low-carb diet, your body becomes really good at burning fats as fuel. Because you’re not consuming as many carbs, you go from a sugar burner to a fat burner.
There’s a period where you need to get fat adapted to do so, however. Because of this phenomenon, you should be able to burn through stored body fat rather than through glycogen stores.
VERY Hard To Overeat
Because fats and proteins are highly satiating (they fill you up quickly), it’s very hard to overeat on a Keto Diet. A meal of eggs and avocados is way more filling than a bowl of cereal, for example.
This means you will eat fewer calories without really trying and hit that calorie deficit that’s usually difficult on other diets.
Also, consuming fats slow down the digestion of other foods; you’ll digest slower and have solid energy levels throughout the day.
Forces You To Eat More Protein, AKA Higher Thermic Effect Of Food
The Keto Diet focuses primarily on higher-fat animal food sources. Things like ground beef, chicken thighs, and steak come to mind.
However, I wouldn’t rely on processed foods like bacon, sausage, salami, etc on keto.
Most people don’t get nearly enough protein in their diets whatsoever. Eating a keto diet that cuts out carbs almost entirely forces you to eat higher protein-rich foods.
Because of the thermic effect of food, you actually will burn more calories just from consuming them.
The macro-nutrient with the highest thermal effect of food is protein at around 30%.
For example, if you eat 200 grams of protein a day, 30% will be burnt off just from the thermic effect.
This will take you from 800 calories from protein down to around 560 calories.
So just by eating more protein, you’ll automatically be burning more calories every day! Now that’s a win-win to me!
Keto Diet Results In 8 Weeks
The first time I ever did keto, I worked a very hard job at Goodwill, working at the donor door.
My schedule was pretty simple; I would go to work, come home and lift weights 3 days a week. My workouts were very basic; I was Squatting 3 days a week, benching twice, deadlifting and pressing once, and of course, rows and pull-ups.
After every workout, I would take my Prowler (Weighted Sled) and push it 10 times, about 40 yards each push. This was the setup that allowed me to drop 40 pounds in 2 months with my incredible keto diet progress.
Keto Diet Plan To Lose 40 Pounds
The whole time I was doing this setup, along with working 40 hours at a physically demanding job, I was doing Keto.
My diet was really simple and didn’t require any fancy keto recipes; I ate eggs, bacon; salads with cheese, salami and Italian dressing, and a bunch more!
I was never hungry, had tons of energy, and had no problem getting through my workouts and cardio. My mind was clear, and I didn’t crash at the end of the day.
I remember that first week I lost almost 8 lbs just from water weight and some fat. It was the quickest my weight ever dropped, and I was hooked!
As my keto diet went along, I never weighed or measured a single thing I ate. I just made sure I ate higher fat levels for energy, protein took care of itself, and I ate no more than 30 grams of carbs per day.
It was a simple diet structure I could stick to. And it obviously worked, as I finally got to a healthy weight in my 8-week keto challenge.
Weight Gain On Keto?
Often, people are doing Keto, everything is going well, they’re losing weight quickly, and then BAM!
They stop losing and even start gaining a little weight.
They freak out and wonder why the ketogenic diet works well for so many people, but it isn’t doing the same for them. Why does this happen, and what can you do if it happens to you?
Here are a couple of reasons why this happens:
- You’re actually eating more calories than you think. Even though you think you’re eating healthy and keeping the calories lower than before, you probably aren’t. Although I didn’t have an exact calorie count to hit when I first started using it, some people will have to keep losing weight. Start tracking your calories for a week and back off when you aren’t losing for more than 2 weeks in a row. You should notice you start losing again just like before.
- You’re eating too much protein. If you eat too much protein on Keto, your body will start converting excess protein into sugar through a process called glucogenesis. Because of this, instead of burning fats for fuel first, it’ll burn those sugars off instead. Keep protein intake no higher than 20-25% of your total calorie intake.
- You’re allergic or intolerant to something. Many people use things like eggs, cheese, heavy whipping cream, and nuts in their Ketogenic Diet. Unfortunately, if you have an allergy or intolerance, your body will have increased inflammation. This inflammation will actually increase your body weight slightly, similar to holding water and bloating. When this happened to me, I had to cut out dairy products like heavy whipping cream and cheese. As soon as I did this, I lost weight again quickly and experienced no issues from there.
If you do end up hitting a plateau, it’s not the end of the world! Keep your activity high, train hard with big compound movements, and make sure to stay consistent. You will lose weight, and the Keto diet is a great way to do it!
I’m so confident in the ketogenic diet that whenever I need to lose weight fast, they’re my go-to! As long as I listen to my own advice and stay consistent, it works every time without fail.
I’d love to hear about your experiences with Keto! If you’ve done it before or have similar results to share, I want to hear about it! Let me know what you did in the comments below!
Does exercise speed up weight loss in ketosis?
This is a super easy question to answer. Making sure you nail your nutrition is the most important thing for weight loss. Without this, no amount of exercise is going to be enough to out-train it.
However, combining weight training and cardio with keto will be more effective for overall healthy weight loss and body composition.
While you’re in ketosis, you’re going to have fat as a fuel source. So it makes perfect sense that the fat you consume as well as your stored body fat will be used to fuel your training.
Progressive overload with strength training will help with muscle gain and even spare muscle tissue.
Cardio will help burn calories and keep your heart healthy. Your keto diet will help with keeping your calories in line to lose weight.
All of these are important for your overall goal to come to fruition. The stronger you are, the healthier you are, the better your mental health is, and the more consistent you are with your ketogenic diet, the better. Bottom line!
You Need More Electrolytes
This is a major one that many people experience almost immediately start experiencing some negative side effects of doing Keto. A few of these including headaches, diarrhea, and dehydration are the main ones I think most people get at the start.
An electrolyte imbalance is often linked to symptoms dubbed “the Keto flu”. Carbohydrates are stored in the body with water, by consuming fewer carbs our bodies excrete more water and retain less of it.
This is one of the main reasons why people have headaches, diarrhea, and dehydration. All major contributors to exhaustion on the Keto diet.
Also, because we have fewer carbs in the body, we release less insulin, which causes the kidneys to excrete more sodium. Loss of sodium affects the balance of other key electrolytes in the body.
Makes sense, huh?
This is why supplementation with electrolytes such as sodium, potassium, and magnesium is so important.
Each of these electrolytes is essential in the body, even more so on Keto!
Let’s go over why each of these electrolytes is so essential!
Sodium is something I’ve been trying to increase in my and my clients’ daily lives and the results have been fantastic! My blood pressure has improved, and my energy levels are at an all-time high.
My clients have reported higher levels of energy, lower levels of fatigue, and faster recovery times as well.
On top of my personal experience, sodium has major physiological processes in the body, including:
- Nerve Function
- Regulation of blood pressure & volume
- Control of water retention
- Control of nerve impulses
If you have a sodium deficiency, which is hard to achieve for most Americans which consume more than enough sodium per day, a couple of issues occur.
Signs of sodium deficiency are:
- Brain fog
- Stomach cramps
As you can see, sodium is something incredibly important for anybody doing Keto but especially for those that train and work strenuous jobs as well.
Supplementing sodium on the Keto diet is incredibly important! Ketogains recommends 5,000-7,000 mg per day.
I know this sounds like a lot more than what is normally recommended. But bear in mind those sodium recommendations are for SEDENTARY individuals on regular diets.
For Keto, you need to ensure you’re staying properly hydrated, which means adequate levels of sodium.
Here’s a video from Stan Efferding going over the subject of why salt is actually a performance-enhancing food similar to carbohydrates.
Potassium is another major electrolyte in the body that most people seem to have deficiencies in, unfortunately.
Potassium tends to be the mineral we typically use to prevent cramping in the body. But it has many other benefits that protect certain processes in the body, including:
- Decreased risk of hypertension
- Maintenance of body fluid
- Blood pressure control
- Cellular function
It’s incredibly important to consume enough Potassium every day. Keeping your organs functioning at optimal levels is essential for weight loss as well as overall health.
A few of the other side effects of potassium deficiency include:
- Heart palpitations
- Adverse cardiovascular effects
- Kidney damage or failure
These are horrible side effects you should consider when doing any diet! These effects are life-altering and some of them I’ve experienced myself, unfortunately.
Some Keto-friendly foods high in Potassium are as follows:
- Brussel sprouts
Try to consume at least 1,000-3,500 mg per day to ensure optimal levels in the body.
Magnesium is the 4th most abundant mineral in the body. Because of this, it’s incredibly important for health.
Some of these important life processes are:
- Brain biochemistry
- DNA & RNA synthesis
- Aiding in chronic diseases such as the prevention of cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease, ADHD, and Type-2 diabetes
- Protein synthesis
- Nerve transmission
- Muscular contractions
- Controlling blood pressure
As you can see, magnesium might be the most important electrolyte by far! It can even have an effect on personality changes which I have experienced firsthand. These include delirium, depression, agitation, confusion, and anxiety.
To ensure you aren’t deficient in Magnesium, make sure to consume between 300-500 mg per day. Some of the best foods that will supplement your Keto diet include:
- Pine nuts
- Pumpkin seeds
- Dark chocolate
- Swiss chard
As you can see, there are a ton of options to ensure you’re consuming the correct amount of magnesium every day. Just like macronutrients and calories, you can and should be tracking your electrolyte balance as well!
By consuming the correct amounts of sodium, magnesium, and potassium; you’ll be healthier, have more energy, and have better luck with your weight loss journey than those that aren’t maintaining a proper electrolyte balance.
If you’re looking for a diet that’s really easy to stick to this might be the one for you! Plus your weight loss will come quickly, just make sure you have an exit strategy afterward.
You don’t want to go back to eating hundreds of grams of carbs, wonder why you gained a bunch of weight back, and have to diet again.
Increase your carbs and calories slowly after your keto diet, 25-50 grams a day is plenty. You will gain a little weight back in the form of stored water and glycogen.
This is normal, as long as you don’t start eating a ton right after the diet, you shouldn’t gain any body fat back at all.
Until next time,