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Last Updated on February 22, 2021

Keto for Beginners: How to Make Keto Weight Loss Work for You

Keto for Beginners: How to Make Keto Weight Loss Work for You

In the past few years, more and more people have started to suffer from obesity, with associated heart and metabolic problems. If you are struggling to keep your weight under control, you are also probably worrying about additional problems, such as hypertension and diabetes. This is where keto weight loss can help.

People who fight weight gain have a genetic predisposition, but they also need to make a few lifestyle changes, especially with regard to their exercise habits and caloric intake. It has been demonstrated that regular physical activity, as well as improved dietary habits, can promote weight loss and allow one to maintain the same weight in the long term.

In this article, we will look into keto diet basics and how to get started as a beginner.

Keto 101

The ketogenic diet for beginners has been presented as one of the most effective approaches for quick weight loss.[1] Indeed, this nutritional approach has a solid basis, allowing one to lose excess pounds and return to a healthy figure. As you will see for yourself, it can even improve cardiovascular health.

The main idea behind this diet is to drastically reduce your carb intake, so the body begins to use the ketone bodies produced by the liver as energy. As the glucose levels decrease, and the fuel for the body changes, significant weight loss will occur.

This condition was first noticed in individuals who were fasting; at the beginning, the ketogenic diet was used for those who suffered from epilepsy. It was only recently that researchers began to recommend it for weight loss purposes.

Health Benefits of the Ketogenic Diet

It has been confirmed that this dietary approach based on keto weight loss can help one fight obesity, as well as high cholesterol levels. It can improve cardiovascular risk factors, protecting one against stroke and atherosclerosis.

The ketogenic diet can also suppress your appetite. This is related to the fact that you will consume more protein, which has a higher satiety effect.

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It is also worth mentioning that such changes can keep the appetite control hormones in check. Proteins have a thermal effect (your body needs lots of energy to digest them), contributing to the activation of the your metabolism.

Ketone bodies cause a number of changes within the body, contributing to the suppression of the appetite in a direct manner. They prevent the body from storing fat, while activating the metabolism and promoting the fat-burning process. Thus, one experiences a higher metabolic efficiency, consuming more calories in the process.

When formulating the best keto diet guidelines and plan, keep in mind that this diet can help you lose excess weight and offer a wide range of other benefits[2].

For example, the ketone bodies produced in the liver can provide protection against cognitive impairment (associated with weight gain and obesity in general). The dietary approach can reduce the risk of cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and epilepsy.

It can even be of use to those who suffer from Parkinson’s disease, and it facilitates recovery in patients diagnosed with brain injuries. The ketogenic diet does wonders for those with polycystic ovary syndrome and acne; this is related to the reduction in insulin levels.

The Physiological Changes Associated With Keto

What happens is that, upon reducing the carb intake, a metabolic condition known as physiological ketosis occurs.[3] This is when the body runs out of glucose, using ketone bodies (obtained through ketogenesis). When these began to be used as energy, keto weight loss occurs as a natural consequence of ketone levels rising.

As the glycemic level begins to stabilize, the weight loss process occurs. The risk of metabolic syndrome is reduced, which increases the life expectancy for the individual. Bad cholesterol levels are reduced, as well as one of triglycerides (associated risk of cardiovascular disease).

The metabolic rate is altered, and physiological changes occur. While the lean body mass is preserved, the fat mass begins to be consumed, and weight loss is no longer difficult. Interestingly, all of these changes do not have a negative effect on the metabolism of glucose (eliminating insulin resistance).

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What Happens When You Consume Carbs in High Quantities

Unfortunately, the modern diet is associated with the consumption of foods that are high in carbs. The rates of obesity have increased only in the past few years, when more and more people have fallen prey into the trap of carbs.

The excessive intake of carbohydrates can lead to weight gain and obesity in many cases. A diet rich in carbs has a negative influence on insulin resistance. Moreover, it increases glucose levels and reduces the level of good cholesterol.

All of these changes translate into a higher risk of diabetes and heart disease as the metabolism is disturbed.

How It Feels to Follow the Keto Diet for Beginners

The reduction of carb intake, associated with a higher consumption of proteins, has proven to be quite beneficial (both physically and mentally). The sensation of lethargy, normally caused by high levels of carbs, disappears, and the mood improves. However, you’ll have to pass through a couple of days of carb withdrawal, but the symptoms can be reduced by eating plenty of protein and fats, drinking water, and avoiding stress.

Some people have reported that in days 3-5 of a keto diet, you can experience what some call the “keto flu,” which is a set of side effects generated when your body’s glucose reserves are used up, but your body hasn’t completely adjusted to its new diet[4]. If you notice fatigue, shakiness, or irritability, eating a serving of low-carb fruit can help.

In the beginning, you may find it difficult to reduce carb intake. However, as the body acclimates to these dietary changes, the sensation of hunger disappears, and you’re less tempted to give into cravings. As the fat metabolism is improved, you’ll begin to notice the weight difference and feel better overall. You’ll notice these positive changes within a week or two of starting your keto diet.

Tips for Successful Weight Loss on Keto

When it comes to weight loss tips to remember when trying the keto diet for beginners, this is the most important one:

You need to make sure that your daily carb intake does not exceed 20 grams, regardless of how many fats or proteins you plan on consuming that day. The intake of net carbs should not be influenced by the total caloric intake.

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Furthermore, the transition from your regular diet to the ketogenic approach should not take place all of a sudden. You need to take a gradual approach, so that your body has the necessary amount of time to adapt to this new diet.

In order to facilitate the overall transition, you can opt for meals that mimic regular, carb-rich foods. These will help you stay on the diet and achieve your weight loss goals without too much effort.

Which Foods Are Keto Friendly?

If you have decided to try keto weight loss, you need to up your protein intake. You are allowed to consume lean meats, such as chicken and eggs, and dairy products, such as full-fat cheese. Fatty fish, such as tuna and sardines, as well as other types of seafood, is allowed[5].

What You Should Eat on a Keto Diet

    You can also consume olive oil and flaxseed oil, as these deliver beneficial fats to the body. Vegetables such as spinach, cucumber, lettuce, celery, cauliflower, eggplants, and carrots are recommended. As for fruits, you can consume berries of various kinds, citrus fruits, tomatoes, and avocados.

    Do not be afraid to consume olive oil of good quality as this is one of the best food products for someone who is on a keto weight loss diet[6]. In the Mediterranean, olive oil is eaten in generous quantities, and the people here do not suffer from obesity (they also have a reduced risk of heart problems).

    You can add in an extra dose of healthy oil with the Infuel Omega 3 Fish Oil Supplement.

    Which Foods Are Restricted?

    Simply put, as a keto beginner, you need to drastically reduce your carb intake over a span of several days to a week. This means that you should eat white flour products, potatoes, and pasta as little as possible. The same goes for bread and rice.

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    It is important to be aware of the fact that carbs are found in other food products, especially in sweets. Stay away from candies, cakes, and other similar items that are rich in sugar. Of course, fruit juices and soft drinks are on the no list.

    Does the Ketogenic Diet Actually Promote Weight Loss?

    In the introduction, we talked about obesity and the risks associated with weight gain. Keto weight loss can reverse such changes, allowing one to keep hunger under control.

    Proteins are a big part of this dietary approach, offering prolonged satiety. On the other hand, both carbs and fat are less filling, causing one to feel hungry more quickly.

    As one begins to consume more proteins, the sensation of hunger appears at longer intervals. The ketogenic diet will not cause one to feel hungry all the time, presenting a higher success rate than other dietary approaches.

    As the carb intake is reduced to the lowest possible level, the ketogenic state will occur, and the body will no longer rely on glucose for fuel. The ketone bodies produced in the liver, from the fat reserves, will act as fuel.

    Final Thoughts

    It is important to understand that the body needs time to adapt to the state of ketosis. You need to pursue the dietary approach and not be satisfied with the initial weight loss, which is due to the diuresis process. Soon, you will see that your body has begun to burn fat efficiently, allowing you to return to a healthy figure.

    The ketogenic diet presents a number of advantages, starting with the fact that you have plenty of allowed foods to organize your daily meals. Moreover, you can follow this diet without having to count calories or keep track of how much food you have eaten.

    Overall, the keto diet for beginners is a great path toward losing weight and building a healthier lifestyle.

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    Featured photo credit: Eduardo Roda Lopes via unsplash.com

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    Evlin Symon

    Evlin Symon is a health and wellness expert specialized in fitness, weight loss, pregnancy, nutrition and beauty.

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    Last Updated on June 9, 2021

    How to Lose 10 Pounds in 3 Weeks: 20 Simple Tips

    How to Lose 10 Pounds in 3 Weeks: 20 Simple Tips

    Weight loss has become a sticky subject of confusion, conflicting information and myths. Before you know it, you’re on the crash-course diet from hell and getting no-where! Sustainable weight loss is not a fad diet or program, it’s a lifestyle. With these 20 proven weight loss tips, you can lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks. Best of all, you will set yourself up for continued progress every week!

    1. The Golden Rule: Calories In vs. Calories Out

    This simple fact simply cannot be overruled – to lose weight you must burn more calories than you consume.

    Use tools to help track and measure your daily intake then slowly taper down. Start with 500kcal steps or lower until you observe a consistent weekly loss.

    Never go dangerously low, eating much below 1200-1600 can stall your progress and harm your health!

    2. Set Attainable Goals And Track Your Progress

    Achieving each goal will help spur you on, so be realistic and start small. Here is an example of an easily achievable goal progression:

    • Lose weight each week
    • Lose 1-3 pounds per week
    • Lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks
    • Fit into size 30 jeans!

    3. Consider Skipping Breakfast

    Breakfast is commonly considered the most important meal of the day, however, it is not so when it comes to weight loss.

    Intermittent fasting can be a useful fat-loss tool. Restrict yourself to a smaller eating window by skipping breakfast and only eating from 12-8pm. You will reduce your daily calorie intake without restricting your lunch and dinner!

    4. Drink More Water (Especially Before Meals)

    Drinking water an hour before eating has two proven benefits for weight loss:

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    • 24-30% boost in metabolism for 1-1.5 hours after intake[1]
    • Increased chance of consuming less calories which further supports weight loss[2]

    5. Make Coffee Your New Best Friend

    Coffee has received a bad reputation in the past, however, it should be known that quality coffee is rich in antioxidants and beneficial to weight loss.

    The caffeine content will boost your body’s metabolism by up to 10%,[3] leading to a 10-29% increase in fat burning power. Take it black, with no added sugar!

    6. Make Green Tea Your Second Best Friend

    Green tea provides a milder dose of caffeine but it is abundant in wonderful catechins. These antioxidants will work with the caffeine in a perfect fat burning harmony!

    7. Always Check For Added Sugar

    Sugar has demonstrated worryingly strong links with obesity, diabetes[4] and heart disease[5] (to name a few).

    But even if you do not add it yourself, you should check the ingredients of your sauces or packaged foods. Even self-proclaimed health foods can be riddled with added sugar!

    8. Cut Out Simple Carbohydrates

    Simple/refined carbohydrates are quickly absorbed, spiking your blood sugar and insulin levels in the process.[6] As a result, you will feel hunger and cravings come back again in no time!

    Avoid all sugar or refined grains by avoiding the following foods:

    • Cookies, candy and sweets
    • Packaged cereals
    • White bread and rice
    • Cakes

    9. Scale Down Your Portion Sizes

    It pays to become aware of how much you are eating, exercise portion control and slowly scale it down.

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    Even small reductions of 10-20% are often enough to tip the balance and trigger weight loss. Try measuring your portions more carefully and don’t underestimate the power of using smaller bowls![7]

    10. Keep Healthy Food On Standby for Stacks

    The power of temptation is mighty, so why not remove it completely?

    Only keep healthy snacks within reach, then you won’t be able to binge on junk food! Here are some healthy ideas to stock your cupboard:

    • Whole fruit
    • Handful of nuts
    • Hard boiled eggs
    • Vegetables

    11. Spice Up Your Life

    Breathe new life into your dishes and reinforce your weight loss efforts with the power of cayenne pepper! Capsaicin from cayenne pepper and other spicy foods helps to ramp up metabolism and decrease appetite.[8]

    12. Top Up Your Protein Intake

    Protein rich foods not only keep you fuller for longer[9] but burn more energy during digestion. Studies have shown that swapping calories for whey protein supplements can boost weight loss whilst increasing lean muscle![10]

    Alternatively, here are a number of protein-rich food sources:

    • Lean beef
    • Skinless chicken breasts
    • Eggs
    • Salmon
    • Low-fat yogurt

    13. Balance Your Diet With Complex Carbs

    Consuming complex carbs will produce a sustained energy release and keep blood sugar levels manageable. You can easily keep hunger and cravings at bay with these nutrient dense complex carbs:

    • Vegetables
    • Fruit
    • Brown rice
    • Wholegrains
    • Beans and legumes

    14. Forget About Fast Food

    Not matter how healthy it may claim to be, fast food is almost always laden with heart-clogging trans fats,[11] excessive sugar and salt.

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    Worse yet, these meals are high in calories whilst low in nutritional value, making them a terrible choice for fuel. Before you know it, you will have broken the cardinal rule of calories in vs. calories out!

    15. Watch Out for “Hidden Calories”

    There’s no need to completely forgo your favorite condiments, just make sure you are aware of their true caloric impact. It’s easy to go overboard and negate much of your hard work!

    Go easy with the following condiments and toppings, they are surprisingly heavy in calories:

    • Mayonnaise
    • Salad dressing
    • Cream
    • Cheese
    • Butter
    • Oils

    16. Choose Low-Medium GI Foods

    High GI foods sources cause sugar levels to shoot up, the resultant spike in insulin will actually encourage dreaded fat storage![12]

    Check out the GI scale and choose low-medium GI foods. Your insulin levels will remain under control, you will feel fuller for longer and find it easier to lose weight!

    17. Opt For Weight Training Over Cardio

    Weight training burns a significant amount of calories, keeping you strong, fit and healthy in the process. It’s more effective than cardio for body recomposition as it helps preserve essential muscle mass whilst you lose weight.[13]

    Studies have also shown a significant increase in metabolic rate both during and after your workout,[14] further supporting your weight loss efforts!

    Choose a routine that uses compound lifts such as Presses, Squats and Deadlifts. These exercises recruit the largest amount of muscles per movement, ideal for maintaining lean muscle mass and trimming body fat.

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    18. Go Walking or Cycling

    Consistent small actions soon add up to big changes. For this reason, why not choose to walk or cycle whenever you can? You will burn more calories as you go about your day without the need for further diet restrictions.

    You can burn more calories as you go about your day, without any further diet restriction. If you’re physically able there is no excuse, take the stairs over escalators and lifts!

    19. Get Enough Sleep

    Sleep is highly underrated for weight loss. Forget about the 6-hour minimum claim, many of us require 8-9 hours to operate at peak efficiency.

    Both duration and quality of sleep will have a great influence on hormones that control body composition. In fact, poor sleep has shown worrying links to obesity, increasing the risk in adults by 55%![15]

    20. Be Careful Of Liquid Calories!

    We all know alcohol dehydrates and damages our liver and kidneys. But it can also thwart weight loss efforts as an unexpected source of calories.

    You may be surprised to know a beer can equate to 150kcal, 125kcal for a glass of red wine and a whopping 400Kcal for a single sweet Piña Colada! Instead, try sticking to tonic water with a slice of lime, your body will thank you!

      So there you have the 20 simple lifestyle tips that will support you in achieving healthy weight loss. Adopt as many as you can and you will easily lose 10 pounds or more in 3 weeks!

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      Featured photo credit: Lecic via shutterstock.com

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