Side Effects Of A Keto Diet
Keto diet proponents tout the benefits of ketosis-fueled fat burning as a way to rid the body of excess stored fat. However, shifting fuel sources from glucose to fat can cause various unpleasant symptoms. According to Majumdar, ketosis symptoms, which are sometimes referred to as the keto flu, may include:
- Trouble sleeping
These symptoms usually subside after your body adjusts to being in ketosis. But if you go out of ketosis, you may experience those symptoms again when you go back into ketosis, Majumdar says.
Pro tip: A benefit of the keto diet is that it can help reduce your added sugar intake. But you dont have to follow a keto diet to accomplish this feat, Majumdar says. Cut back on the sweet stuff by reading food labels and limiting or avoiding foods with added sugar. The American Heart Association recommends limiting added sugar to no more than 36 grams per day for men and 25 grams for women.
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How Many Carbs Can I Have On The Ketogenic Diet
Curious how many carbohydrates you should have when doing the ketogenic diet? Here is a detailed breakdown of target carb counts for every type of keto so that you can stay in ketosis and lose weight.
We all know the ketogenic diet is a low-carb diet.
However, how many carbs exactly can you have?
Well, it depends on the type of ketogenic diet you are doing. There is traditional, cyclical, clean, and even dirty keto, which all have their own macros and carb counts.
In this guide, I will help you figure out how many carbs you can have on a traditional keto diet and how many on the other versions.
Lets get this started.
Perfecting Your Keto Carb Macro
The truth is, cutting carbs is only part of the battle when it comes to seeing results on a ketogenic meal plan. Youll also want to learn how to balance your protein intake and include plenty of healthy fats for a balanced approach.
This can take some strategy and skill, figuring out the right keto foods, portions, and recipes to keep you on track.
This undertaking is also why it is becoming popular to solely focus on hitting carb intake with a so-called lazy keto diet.
Want to make stickling to your low-carb diet a little easier? Grab this free step-by-step guide to meal prep for keto, complete with food lists, menu planning tools, and expert advice to keep you track.
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Fiber: Why You Do Need Some Carbs On Keto
Most of the delicious food held in high regard on a keto diet i.e., butter, cheese, animal meat, coconut oil, etc. lacks any dietary fiber.
Fiber is a type of carb that your body doesnt fully digest. It mainly comes from plant sources like veggies, fruits, beans, nuts, and seeds.
Unfortunately, most of the fiber in the typical Western diet comes from refined carbs like bread and pasta, which are off-limits on keto.
Women need 25 grams of fiber per day, and men need 38 grams per day, according to the Institute of Medicine.
Yet the average American only consumes around 16 grams of fiber per day .
Its not the most glamorous job, but fiber is amazing for your body because it:
So fibers a rock star to your body and generally cant do anything wrong.
But how are you supposed to get fiber when youre keto?
Doesnt fiber usually come from high-carb foods like oatmeal, bread, and prepackaged bars full of sugar?
Yes and no.
Fiber is subtracted from your total daily carbs since your body cannot absorb or process it. This lessens the effect of high-carb foods, so theyre not a total shock to your system.
For example, a cup of broccoli may have around six total carbs. But half of those carbs may come strictly from fiber.
The net carb count is the difference between the total carbs and the fiber count.
So that broccoli carb impact goes from six grams to just three carbs when you subtract the fiber.
How To Include English Muffins On Keto
If you feel as though you must have an English muffin, you can isolate the bottom layer, and eat it alone. This will yield about half the carbs, taking the total carbs to 12.5 grams.
Make sure that you do not spread jelly or jam on top, as this will further increase the carb count. You should have it plain or add whipped butter. You can opt for Oat Bran, as this has the lowest carb count.
Another option is to find a keto-friendly recipe to make your own keto English muffins. These recipes tend to use almond flour, which is lower in carbs, mixed with egg whites. It is delicious, and it will satisfy your bread cravings.
People sometimes have a hard time eliminating bread when they start keto. So, if you want to get into and stay in ketosis, it is best to eliminate foods that are usually sweet or have an all-purpose flour ingredient in the baking.
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When Should I Eat Carbs If Im On A Low
If youre following keto, your carbs will typically be below 20g per day. That said, there are a few occasions where its ok to eat some extra carbs . For example: when training for a marathon or race during the first week of keto-adaptation while transitioning off sugar and starches if blood sugars have been high for long periods of time with no explanation other than genetic predisposition but otherwise healthy if eating all vegetables becomes too difficult due to budget or personal circumstances. It is also possible that someone who usually eats around 40-60% carbs in their diet might need more carbohydrate calories after an illness, infection, injury etc., which would result in them eating more carbs than usual. Lastly, if youre pregnant and/or breastfeeding then its important to pay attention to your needs for additional carbohydrates because this can vary from person to person based on size, activity level etc., as well as how long they plan to breastfeed.
Putting It All Together Your Keto Carb Limit
Technically, there is no universal carb limit for the ketogenic diet. Each keto website has slightly different suggestions, but in general, most people will get the best results from staying below 35 grams of total carbs per day. By restricting your carbs even lower especially your net carbs you can get into a deeper ketosis more quickly.
Not everyone, however, will get the same results with the same carb limit because our ketone levels depend on our activity levels, protein intake, stress, and keto adaptations.
Because of this, some people may thrive on the ketogenic diet with a higher carb intake while others should consume below 35g of carbs per day.
To find your personal keto carb limit, you can experiment with eating extra carbs and checking your ketone levels. Slowly add 5 grams of complex carbs from vegetables or low carb fruits per day until you notice a drop in ketones. From there, decrease your carbs until your ketones are back up, and that is your new carb limit.
However, you must keep in mind that your stress levels, activity levels, protein intake, and keto adaptation will change your carb limit, so it may be easier for you to stick to a carb limit that keeps you in ketosis no matter what. Eating Less than 35 grams of carbs per day is one of the most effective ways to accomplish this.
Either way, keto athlete or not, you can also benefit from ketone boosting MCTs or ketone salts. All you need is a small dose of one or the other, and youll be in ketosis.
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What Should I Eat On The Targeted Ketogenic Diet
The healthiest way to get your carbs on the targeted keto diet is to consume fruit, dairy, and whole-grain foods. Fruits contain fructose. Dairy contains lactose. Whole grains contain glucose. When consumed in moderation, you may also get your carbs from dextrose, which is found in food and beverage products for athletes.
To get your recommended daily allowance of fat calories, cook your food in vegetable oils that are high in omega-6 linoleic acid. Monounsaturated fats come from nuts, palm oil, olive oil, and avocados. Polyunsaturated fats come from nuts and fish. You can also get protein from nuts and fish as well as red meat and poultry.
Keto Macros: Carbs Protein & Fat
When following a keto diet, the idea is to eat very few carbs, a moderate amount of protein, and just as much fat as you need to feel satisfied, rather than stuffed.
CarbohydratesLimit carbs to 20 or fewer grams of net carbs per day, or 5 to 10% of calories. Although its possible that you may not need to be this strict, eating fewer than 20 grams of net carbs every day virtually guarantees that youll be in nutritional ketosis. Learn more >
ProteinEat enough protein to meet your needs. Most people need at least 70 grams per day, or 20 to 35% of calories from protein. Learn more >
FatInclude enough fat to add flavor. Theres no reason to add lots of fat unless you need extra calories. Plus, many whole foods like eggs and meat contain plenty of fat. On a keto diet, about 60 to 75% of your calories come from fat. Learn more >
If you are wondering what kind of results you can expect from a keto diet, the answer depends on how strict you are, along with a number of other factors.
Evidence shows that keto diets help with weight loss, blood sugar control, and many other conditions.8 But outcomes from even the most well-run study are still an average of what each participant experienced.
That means that your experience with keto will be unique. Your weight loss and health improvements may be sudden and dramatic or they may be slow but steady.
What benefits might you experience by switching to a keto diet? Quite a few, possibly.
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How Protein Can Keep You From Ketosis
Insulin is known as a blood sugar lowering-hormone. However, not only carbs but also protein increases insulin levels. The hormone helps to shuffle sugar and amino acids into cells.
Since high insulin levels can prevent ketosis, you should try to limit insulin release.
Even though protein does not nearly cause the same insulin spike as high glycemic carbs do, too much can make ketosis less stable.
This is why carb restriction shouldnt be your only focus on the ketogenic diet. To achieve ketosis efficiently, eat the right amount of protein and limit your carbohydrate consumption. Dont just do one or the other.
In general, you should aim to get around 25% of your calories from protein. If youre active or restricting calories for fat loss, then it is best to increase your protein intake. To find out the exact amount of protein you should eat, use our keto calculator.
What Are The Benefits Of Ketosis
Research has shown that ketosis may have several health benefits. One of the biggest benefits of ketosis may be weight loss. The process can help you feel less hungry, which may lead to eating less food. It can help you lose belly fat while maintaining a lean mass. Other possible benefits of ketosis include treating and managing diseases such as:
- Epilepsy: Healthcare providers often put children with epilepsy on the keto diet to reduce or even prevent seizures by altering the excitability part of their brain.
- Other neurologic conditions: Research has shown the keto diet may help improve neurological conditions such as Alzheimers disease, autism and brain cancers such as glioblastoma.
- Type 2 diabetes: The keto diet can help people with Type 2 diabetes lose weight and manage their blood sugar levels.
- Heart disease: The keto diet may lower your risk of developing cardiovascular disease by lowering your blood pressure, improving your HDL cholesterol levels and lowering your triglycerides.
- Metabolic syndrome: The keto diet may reduce your risk of developing metabolic syndrome, which is associated with your risk of heart disease.
Ketosis has also been shown to increase your focus and energy. The keto diet delivers your bodys energy needs in a way that reduces inflammation. Research suggests your brain works more efficiently on ketones than on glucose.
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The Keto Calculator: How To Calculate Your Macros For Keto
Macronutrients or macros provide your body with calories and energy. They are broken down into three main categories: Carbohydrates, Proteins, and Fats. It is important to track your macronutrients while following the ketogenic diet because the goal is to limit your carbohydrate intake so that your body utilizes fat as the primary source of energy. A keto diet is high in fats, moderate in protein, and low in carbs . Do you know how the keto calculator counts your daily macros? Lets break it down into simple steps.
How To Tell If You Are In Ketosis
The only way to be sure youre in ketosis is to measure your ketones. Here are the most common signs and symptoms:
- An unpleasant metallic taste or dry mouth
- Food intake is reduced .
- Feeling thirsty and urinating more frequently.
- Initial fatigue, followed by an increase in energy
- Some people experience a characteristic breath odor on a strict low-carb diet. There is a strong, fruity scent often compared to nail polish remover.
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Why Is Counting Carbs On Keto So Important
When you keep net carbs low enoughtypically under 50 grams of net carbs per dayyour body enters ketosis: a metabolic state where you shift from burning carbs for energy to burning fat for fuel.
Getting into ketosis, and staying there, is the whole goal of keto. When youre in ketosis, you feel lasting energy, a cognitive boost and fewer cravings, to name just a few benefits. Keto can even help you stay at a healthy weight.
The problem is that eating too many carbs can prevent you from reaching ketosis and staying there. Thats why learning how to figure out net carbs is so important.
Go over your carb limit, and youll fall out of ketosis and lose out on all the benefits. If youre not seeing results on keto, our number one recommendation is to look at your macronutrient breakdown . This is true whether you follow clean keto or a dirty keto diet.
Regardless of your diet, a high amount of carbs can also contribute to the following side effects:
- Spikes in your blood sugar
- Disruptive changes to your hormones
- Shifts in your gut bacteria
- Health conditions like obesity, insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome
The trick is figuring out what your ideal carb intake looks like.
The reality is, carbs are fine in moderation. But if youre on a strict keto diet, you have to pay attention to every single gram and how your body responds to different foods.
Net carbs are important, but theyre not the whole picture on keto. Keep reading to find out why.
Can The Keto Diet Reverse Type 2 Diabetes
Though this isnt the first tool Id use to help someone control their insulin carb counting, evenly distributing carbs throughout the day, may be easier to commit to its not off the table, especially with stronger emerging research, says Keene.
Its true: Some preliminary research suggests keto may be a good approach for some people with type 2 diabetes. For example, one small February 2017 study in the Journal of Medical Internet Research randomized overweight adults with type 2 diabetes into two groups: one that consumed a keto diet, and a control group that ate a low-fat diet recommended by the American Diabetes Association. After 32 weeks, the keto group saw their A1C fall more compared with the control group, and half lowered their A1C to less than 6.5 percent . The keto group also lost 28 lb compared with about 7 lb for the control group.
But long-term studies are needed, and keto can pose health risks to people with diabetes, especially if youre following it without supervision from a medical professional. Importantly, anyone who is on medication to lower blood sugar or who is using insulin should be aware that drastically cutting carbs, as you must do on keto, can lead to dangerously low blood sugar, research shows. Unaddressed, this condition, called hypoglycemia, may lead to seizures, loss of consciousness, and blurred vision, according to the Mayo Clinic.
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How To Know If Your Carbs Are Too Low
Most of you have heard about Ketosis, which is where you get your body to burn fat for energy. However, the majority of the ketogenic dieters believe they are eating too many carbs, which means they are not in ketosis. To know if you are getting enough carbs, you need to consume at least 50 grams of net carbs a day. This is the carb number that will bring you into ketosis. If youre in ketosis, you should see some changes in your body. Youll be eating a more moderate amount of fat, and youll be able to feel less hungry, while also having more energy. If youre not seeing any of these effects, then you may have a diet too low in carbs. Adding some additional carbs can help get you into ketosis. If youre going for more than 50 grams of carbs a day, you should follow a ketogenic diet for 1 to 2 weeks, and then make a final decision on how many carbs you want to consume per day. When youre in ketosis, you can use your liver glycogen to store more ketones, giving you more energy.