So, by now you’ve seen online all these people who are constantly banging on about their success stories about losing weight on the ketogenic diet. However, there you are, you’ve been doing the ketogenic diet for a while, you know that you are in ketosis but not losing weight and you’re thinking, what the hell am I doing wrong?
You’ve been trying your best, dedicating all your time and effort but, seeing slow or no results. Perhaps, you might have even plateaued or even gained a few extra pounds instead. Well, you are not alone! This happens quite often to a lot of people. It’s called keto crashing.
The ketogenic or keto diet can be sometimes overwhelmingly tough to master especially if you miss some steps or approach it the wrong way. The diet stresses eating low-carb to force your body to burn more and more fats instead of glucose.
In such a state, your body breaks down fats into ketones which are then used for energy production. It makes it easy for you to lose extra pounds, but if you are in ketosis but not losing weight, then you might be making the following mistakes.
10 Reasons why Ketosis may not work for you when it comes to weight loss
#1 – You’re not watching your calorie intake
For you to lose weight on the keto diet, you must watch your calorie intake. While calorie intake may not impact on ketosis, it can dramatically affect your weight loss goals. The more you eat too many calories, the more your weight loss goal will suffer. Start by calculating the essential calorie intake that fits your lifestyle and body needs.
There is no standard amount of calories that one is recommended to eat on any ketosis diet. If you weigh 150 pounds, you don’t have to eat the same amount as someone who weighs 180 or 200 pounds. Experts also recommend that you reassess your calorie needs as you progress.
What happens if you don’t eat sufficient calories?
If you reduce your calories too much, your metabolism slows down to save energy due to inadequate levels. It is recommended that you try to create a reasonable calorie deficit that your body fat reserves can compensate for. In some cases of reduced calorie intake, your body might turn to lean mass to obtain the energy it needs.
A large calorie deficit can force your metabolism to decline significantly. It helps the body to maintain normal functions and protect vital organs.
#2 – You aren’t eating satiating meals
Although you might be monitoring your calorie deficit, it is still important to consider the quality of the calories you eat. This ensures that you’re getting satisfied. Just because you’re eating at a calorie deficit doesn’t always mean you’re hungry. When you’re hungry, you’ll be more likely to become miserable and sticking to a healthy diet can become really difficult if not, impossible.
You can quickly get serious food cravings. Eating the right keto foods at a calorie deficit makes you feel satisfied. Both saturated and monounsaturated fats are the recommended healthy fats to consider in any keto diet. If you plan to set out on the right foot, then be sure to emphasize a high-quality ketosis diet.
You might be struggling to find lots of tasty recipes for the keto diet. i know I did at first. When I first started the keto diet, i was eating bacon and eggs cooked in butter, drinking black coffee with butter and coconut oil in it, eating avocados until they came out of my ears.
After a few days I was bored and couldn’t face another avocado or another fried meal. To be fair, I still loved the coffee with butter an coconut oil in it. I still do, and have that every single day.
It wasn’t until I discovered what is my go-to cookbook. This was a life saver for me and made the keto diet much more interesting with loads and loads of tasty recipes so, I never got bored. The one thing I do struggle with though is finding a decent bread recipe.
I just can’t get that fresh loaf taste but, I keep searching and keep trying different recipes. When I find one that I like, I’ll post it on her for you all to give me your opinion.
Find a variety of high-quality fats like MCT oil and coconut oil. Such plant-based oils are known to boost the production of ketones that help put your body into a fat-burning mode.
Other excellent foods that can keep you satisfied include healthy proteins. Steak or fatty cuts of beef and wild salmon are the best sources of healthy proteins that can keep you feeling full. Grass-fed beef is highly recommended.
Most of us tend to shy away from eating proteins. In reality, eating proteins doesn’t necessarily mean you’re drifting out of your keto diet as most people say. If you follow the myth that excess protein causes gluconeogenesis (a process of glucose production from non-carbohydrate sources) which might lower your ketone levels.
The truth is that GNG is vital for proper ketosis as it fuels red blood cells which don’t use ketones. It also keeps the blood in healthy sugar range while enhancing ketosis.
If you are in ketosis but not losing weight, focus on eating satiating meals.
#3 – You might be having food sensitivity problem
Regardless of how much you struggle, track your calories because a food sensitivity can be a significant drawback. Sometimes you might be having a food sensitivity, but you may not be aware of it. The most popular type of food sensitivity is that of dairy products such as butter, cream, ghee, yogurt, and cheese.
Sensitivity to such foods can lead to imbalances in the gut system which often causes inflammation. This can hinder you from achieving your weight loss goals. In fact, it can make you gain weight instead.
Several criticisms have been raised on the effects of dairy products on ketosis. They have been found to increase insulin which can impact on ketosis. They even tend to provoke high-levels of insulin in children. If you have lactose intolerance, then you might need to avoid or limit your intake of dairy products.
If you must eat it, then go for the grass-fed, pastured, or organic full-fat dairy products. Such products tend to have high levels of anti-inflammatory conjugated linoleic acid and omega-3 fatty acids. They also have low hormones levels. It is vital to experiment and pay keen attention to your consumption of dairy products.
#4 – You’ve got Leptin Intolerance
Leptin is a hormone that controls the brain and tells whether the body is satiated or not. It tells you when to eat and when to stop eating. Leptin hormone is produced by body fat cells. It primarily regulates the number of calories you take, the number to burn and the amount of fat our bodies carry.
It enters the bloodstream through the circulatory system. It then binds the proteins in the blood, and upon reaching the brain capillaries, it travels through the blood-brain barrier to bind to leptin receptors located on the hypothalamus section of the brain. The hormone then glues the brain making you feel that you’re full. A variety of factors including: can cause leptin resistance
• Irregular sleeping patterns
• Overeating processed foods
• Calorie restriction
Most obese individuals don’t necessarily suffer from insufficient leptin levels. The reason why they gain a lot of weight due to overeating is that the signals sent by leptin into the brain aren’t adequately received.
This is what makes them crave for more food. If you are in ketosis but not losing weight, then it means you might be having leptin resistance.
How can you reset leptin levels and lose weight in ketosis?
Stick to a low-inflammation ketosis diet that features healthy protein and fats to reset your leptin levels. Foods such as sugar and other refined foods can ruin your healthy leptin levels and bar you from achieving your weight loss objectives. However, resetting leptin can take about 6-8 weeks.
#5 – You’re Eating Excess Carbs
Carbohydrates are the trickiest part of any ketosis diet. This is because they are hidden in several foods and you can find yourself eating too much unexpectedly. Did you know that even green beans, cruciferous veggies, nuts, and dairy products contain carbohydrates?
Excess proteins can raise your insulin levels and fat storage which leads to weight gain. Increase in insulin leads to glucose storage in the muscles, liver and fat cells.
If you are in ketosis but not losing weight, then chances are you might be underestimating the number of carbohydrates you eat. Sometimes it is quite challenging to determine the amount of carbs contained in the foods you eat every day. To overcome this challenge, you can consider:
• Start by filling up on low-carb veggies like avocado, asparagus, and zucchini. They should occupy a larger portion of your plate.
• Berries should be reserved for occasional desserts.
• Emphasize high-fat proteins, eggs, and green leafy salads.
It also pays to take note of the drinks that contain high sugar levels. Alcohols like mannitol, sorbitol, isomalt, and xylitol contain sugar derived from plant products but contain carbs that have been manipulated through processing.
Until you identify your carb requirement and the amount contained in each food, always take carbs in moderation.
Additionally, if you miss hidden carbs, then you might never lose weight. Sometimes you might focus heavily on foods such as dairy products and nuts that make you feel full and forget the hidden carbs. These types of carbs are contained in cruciferous veggies like cauliflower, cabbage, Brussel sprouts, turnips, and fennel.
#6 – You might be having fatphobia
This is a problem I had at first when I started the keto diet. I just couldn’t get my head around increasing my fat intake significantly as it is always drummed into you in the media etc that fat is bad, when in reality, fat is actually good. If you’re combining low carb with a low-fat diet, then you might feel exhausted and hungry too soon.
This can make you quit the keto diet completely. Your body uses fat reserves in the absence of carbohydrates. Depriving your body of fats means doing more harm than good. Fats are reliable sources of fuel for the body. If you are afraid to include fats in your diet, then you might be paving the way for the unexpected—weight gain.
Some of the best sources of fat you can consider in the ketosis diet for weight loss include sour cream, avocado, coconut oil, olive oil and heavy cream and more.
Fats are also vital for satiety. Apart from keeping you energized, they make you feel fuller for longer therefore curbing the unnecessary hunger cravings. You neither have to avoid fats nor force it. You can’t lose fat when you’re pushing too much of it into your body.
It means your body can’t get access and burn the stored fat in your body. Experts recommend using fat wisely as a weapon to fight fatigue and remain on track. Fats make it easy for you to control emotional snacking. Leverage it but don’t force it.
#7 – You have the Snack Attack
You must have heard it that snacking promotes weight gain. This is because it elevates your insulin levels (the hormone that stores fat). If you snack a lot and you are in ketosis, then your chances of losing weight are minimal. Sometimes you might feel hungry in between meals, and you find yourself unable to wait for the next meal.
There is a couple of things that you can do to fight snacking problem. Things such as getting busy to handle a chore, walking around or exercising can help battle excessive snacking. If you’re snacking out of a habit, then consider replacing that habit. In other circumstances, you might snack because you don’t eat enough during meals.
Avoid snacking at all costs if you want a clean keto diet that helps you shed those extra pounds.
#8 – Exercising Too Much
You can burn more fats in a ketosis diet by exercising. Exercises such as cardio are often recommended. Cardio is effective as it increases fat oxidation, produces less lactate, uses low oxygen levels and spares glycogen. However, before embarking on exercise, it is paramount to do it with caution.
Chronic cardio can increase your appetite because it leaves your body deprived of the essential fuel sources. It forces you to crave for the lost calories making you eat more than you expected. Science has it that in any fight between biology and willpower, the biology wins.
It means you end up overeating which can is dangerous for your keto goals. The consequence is that you’ll gain too much weight—the opposite of what you wanted.
In case you are seriously in ketosis but not losing weight, then check on your exercise level. While exercises are extremely useful, too much of it can create acute, internal, and systemic inflammation and the worst of all is oxidative stress. Therefore, consider exercising moderately.
#9 – You’re Stressed!
Stress can be a big issue in your goal for weight loss when it comes to maintaining your keto diet. Cortisol is a stress hormone that is released by the body when it is under pressure. The hormone can channel glucose to the body muscles to compensate for stress. Cortisol also plays a vital role in keeping you awake, alert and motivated.
It is a significant weight loss challenge. If you have constant tension, you can gain fat and therefore gain weight.
Look for ways to manage stress. Stop asking yourself why you’re not losing weight when you are on a strict keto diet. Keto and stress don’t match. Stress causes hunger, hostility, chronic fatigue, arthritis, migraines, sleep problems, acid reflux and hypertension and much more. Chill out a bit and don’t take it all to heart.
Be active and avoid setting too high milestones or putting too much pressure on yourself.
#10 – You have an underlying health condition
Conditions such as polycystic ovary disease or hypothyroidism are the worst enemies of ketosis. Hypothyroidism is a condition where the thyroid gland doesn’t produce sufficient levels of thyroid hormone. The gland secretes several types of hormones including thyroxine, calcitonin, and triiodothyronine.
All these hormones are secreted under the control of pituitary gland. The hormones help to control various body functions like body temperature, metabolism, and production of protein. If you have such a condition and you are seriously following a keto diet, you might not lose weight as you expect. You might need to find treatment first.
The key to losing weight is eating a healthy diet, and this is precisely what the keto diet does. However, certain mistakes and factors can hinder you from achieving weight loss regardless of how serious you might be. Eating too many carbs, proteins, fatphobia, too much exercise, overeating, stress, snack attack are some of the reasons why you might not be losing weight on ketosis.