Thinking about giving the ketogenic diet a try? People are using it not only to lose weight, but to feel more energized, sleep better, and improve their mental focus. It’s not hype. The keto diet is a top health trend because it works. But before you go all in, here are the top 10 things you should know.
1. Keto is more than a diet.
It’s a way of eating (WOE). You’ll often hear people describe their keto diet as a “lifestyle” or “way of eating.” That’s because it’s not something you can stop and start like most other diets. In fact, going on and off keto can mess up your metabolism and confuse your body, possibly causing you to gain more weight. For keto to be effective in enhancing your health, helping you lose weight, and improving your mental focus and energy levels, you must be consistent and make it a permanent lifestyle change.
2. Keto requires time.
You’ll hear about keto success stories where weight starts to melt off almost immediately. Those cases are typically associated with people who have lots of weight to lose. In general, the more weight you have to lose, the faster it’ll come off at the beginning. Another thing to keep in mind is that slow and steady weight loss is healthier, more sustainable, and more likely to stay off. So be patient with yourself. Don’t give up on the keto diet because you don’t immediately see drastic weight loss.
3. Keto can be customized.
The ketogenic diet – generally speaking – is 75% fat, 20% protein, 5% carbohydrates. But daily carb intake can vary from 20 grams to 50 grams depending on how your body processes carbs. There’s no magic number of carbs that’ll get you into ketosis. If you’re not losing weight or unable to get into ketosis at 50 grams, keep dropping your carb macros until you achieve the results you want. Bottom line: do what works for you.
4. Ketosis varies by person.
Achieving ketosis is different for everyone. It can happen quickly for some, slowly for others. Some may do it only via diet. Some may need supplements. There’s no right or wrong way to get into ketosis. It’s completely healthy to take exogenous ketones such as PrimaForce BHB to achieve ketosis faster or stay in ketosis. Or if you cave one day and eat more carbs than usual, drinking one or two servings of BHB can help you feel better and get you out of your energy slump.
5. The Keto Flu is normal but preventable.
This describes a flu-like feeling that hits some people in the beginning of starting the keto diet. This can happen for two reasons: (1) As your body switches from carb-burning to fat-burning, your brain may run low on energy, leading to nausea, headaches, and grogginess. (2) You’re dehydrated and low on electrolytes because the keto diet causes you to urinate more frequently.
The keto flu is a good sign you’re headed in the right direction. But just because it’s normal, doesn’t mean you have to deal with it. The keto flu is totally preventable. You can minimize or eliminate the symptoms by drinking more water, and taking supplements to balance your electrolytes. A supplement that will not only prevent the keto flu, but help you get into ketosis is PrimaForce BHB. It’s a mixture of sodium, potassium, and magnesium – specially formulated to balance your electrolytes, provide hydration, and give you an energy boost.
6. Keto Breath is real.
Also known as “Dragon Breath,” it describes the bad breath frequently associated with the keto diet. Keto breath is typically caused by ketones and excess protein consumption. When your body switches to burning fat as its primary fuel source, your body starts producing ketones, which is released in the breath. This is typically more noticeable when beginning a ketogenic diet. Eating too much protein can cause bad breath because when your body breaks down high amounts of protein, it produces ammonia, which is also released through the breath. A standard keto diet should only contain about 20% from protein, so adjusting your protein intake should do the trick.
As far as ways to combat keto breath caused by ketones, make sure you stay well hydrated (drink about a gallon of water a day), use mouthwash regularly, and practice good oral hygiene (brush your teeth twice a day, floss once a day, and scrape your tongue every evening). You can also chew on fennel seeds, mint, or rosemary, or sip mint tea throughout the day.
7. Watch out for keto farts.
Switching to a high-fat diet can cause some gastrointestinal issues for some people. This can be in the form of both extremes: diarrhea and constipation. This is usually temporary and will resolve itself when the body adjusts to consuming higher amounts of fat. If you take any keto supplements that contain MCT Oil (such as PrimaForce KetoShakes), it’s best to start with half of the recommended serving size and consume it slowly. For constipation, the best solution is usually to drink more water. Fiber supplements (but watch the carbs!) or probiotics may also help.
8. Going keto can impact your workouts.
You may lose some strength and endurance at the beginning of your keto diet. This is because your body is used to burning carbs for fuel, and it suddenly doesn’t have that option anymore. As it adjusts to burning fat, you’ll notice that your workout capacity will return to normal. And you may even notice that your athletic performance improves once your body is fully keto-adapted and burning fat for fuel.
9. Keto can treat some medical conditions.
The keto diet isn’t just being used as a weight management tool. It is also an effective treatment for certain medical conditions. The ketogenic diet is being used to treat patients who have cancer or diabetes. It has also been shown to minimize or eliminate seizures in some patients.
10. Eating keto doesn’t have to be more expensive.
Carbs are cheap fillers so when you replace them with keto-friendly foods such as meat, cheese, and fresh vegetables, it’s easy to assume your grocery bill will go up. However, due to how satiating the keto diet is, you’ll find that you need less food to feel full so changes to your grocery bill can be minimized with proper meal planning. Check out our Keto Shopping List to get started. And scroll through our chef-inspired recipes for delicious meals, snacks, and beverages.
If you decide to move forward with the ketogenic diet, we congratulate you for taking this huge step toward improving your health. We are here to support you on your keto journey. In addition to recipes, we offer informative articles, and great-tasting and effective keto supplements.