Written by: Suzie Walker



Time to read 14 min

Tempted by keto but not sure you can exist on 20g of carbs every day?

Like the principles of low-carb but not yet swayed by a high-fat lifestyle?

We get it! Starting keto can feel like a huge leap – it’s a major lifestyle switch that can feel overwhelming. It’s what holds so many people back from even starting. Especially when we are talking about strict keto. It can be very very daunting!

But, do you know about the Lazy Keto diet? Maybe lazy keto could fit your lifestyle better than strict keto?

So, what is Lazy Keto?

Join us while we explain...

lazy keto

What is the Lazy Keto Diet?

Lazy keto is a less restrictive and more relaxed version of the original ketogenic diet. The idea behind this type of diet is that you don't need to count every single macro (carbs, proteins, and fats) in order to achieve success. Instead, all you have to do is limit your carbohydrate intake and focus on eating fats and protein sources. Simple!

The lazy keto diet is a great way to jumpstart your health journey without having to obsessively count calories or worry about every single carb you eat! 

This style of keto is easier to stick to for most people and is a possible gateway to getting on the original keto diet.

It’s only natural that “keto curious” types would trial a keto-ish way of dieting without going all-in. Or what the industry calls “lazy keto”

We’re not really fans of this term at The Keto Collective, as there’s nothing “lazy” about this thoughtful way of eating (which still requires effort and understanding!). Cutting carbs this low isn't easy, and takes some real effort.

If you’re keto-ish, you’re following the general principles of the original keto diet – low carb high fat – and adapting them to work for you and your lifestyle. It’s essentially a less restrictive variation. Mainly, we see people opting for low carb, while not adopting the high-fat elements of keto, with more flexibility around protein portions.

As long as overall net carbohydrate intake remains below 50g per day; people can enjoy their favorite meals while still achieving their health goals in the process!

Lazy Keto vs Standard Keto Diet

The lazy keto diet is an alternative version of the traditional keto diet. While both diets involve reducing carbohydrate intake and focusing on high fat for nutritional energy, the lazy keto approach does not require strict adherence to macronutrient ratios or tracking meals.

A normal keto diet would look like the following breakdown of macronutrients:

  • 55–60% fat
  • 30–35% protein
  • 5–10% carbohydrate

If you’re keto-ish, you’re really limiting your carb intake to 25g to 50g carbs, without tracking your fat and protein intake.

Additionally, when following a lazy keto lifestyle it's still possible to enjoy delicious meals such as burgers (preferably without buns!) and other classic comfort food dishes adapted for low-carbohydrate lifestyles.

This makes transitioning from an unhealthy lifestyle much easier by allowing people new to the concept of ‘dieting' or those who are busy with work/family commitments more freedom when trying out this type of eating style - without feeling overwhelmed by strict meal plans or unrealistic expectations.

The main difference between these two approaches lies in their level of commitment: while traditional keto requires careful monitoring, meal planning, calorie counting, or using food trackers; with lazy keto all you need to do is reduce your carb intake without worrying about specific ratios or meal plans.

This makes it much easier for people who don't have time or patience for strict tracking and still want most of the health benefits associated with a lower-carb lifestyle. Additionally, if you find yourself getting bored with eating the same things every day, then lazy keto might be better suited since it allows some flexibility when making food choices, allowing some foods that would normally be considered 'dirty keto'...

lazy keto burgers

Lazy Keto Benefits

Yes, you can get a bit more 'dirty' on the lazy keto diet, as low as you eat enough fat, and keep your carbs low, you will be fine and you will feel the many benefits of ketosis.

With a regular ketogenic diet, certain treats like sweets are usually off-limits but with lazy keto you can still enjoy them as long as they fit within your daily limit. And if done correctly, it doesn't even mean sacrificing any nutritional value since there are plenty of low-carb options available for almost every food category out there.

Just remember that ideally you should try and eat real whole food most of the time, and stay away from processed keto snacks.

This is definitely one of the big advantages of going lazy keto that and makes it much easier for users to maintain in the long run, meaning you may actually be able to adhere to the diet for much longer than you would be following the keto approach of a traditional keto diet. 

This means you can get the benefits of a keto diet, without feeling deprived.

Transitioning into this lifestyle could be just what you need if you're looking for an easier way to stay on track with your goals without feeling restricted by too many rules and regulations.

The benefits of lazy keto mirror the standard version, as the absence of carbs forces your body to burn stored fat as fuel. But a warning- if you go 'too lazy', your blood sugar levels will be too high and your efforts will be for nothing...

keto foods that are lazy

Lazy Keto Drawbacks

You can try lazy keto and see if it works for you. You may even find the lazy keto diet perfect for your lifestyle.

You can meet your health goals, and you can still lose weight as you burn through body fat. There’s even some evidence that points to improved gut health as well.

However, You know there’s a but coming…

The reality is lazy keto is not on the same level as the original strict keto diet, and you simply won’t see the rapid weight loss results while being 'lazy'

The Keto Diet requires a specific fat-heavy food list, as your body starts to use ketones as a source of energy. The Lazy keto approach may not get you all the way into ketosis, at least not for extended periods of time.

The OG version of the keto diet is designed to get your body into ketosis and to keep you there, maximizing time spent in that super-charged metabolic state where your body uses fat for fuel.

Yes, restricting carbs is the way into ketosis, but it’s the balance of other macros (your protein and fat) that also drives this. Playing with the ratios, with too much protein, for example, can prevent you from getting into that turbo-charged state to begin with.

Overdo the protein, and your body will convert it into glucose, hurting your diet efforts. This is a process called gluconeogenesis. Be aware of this!

Keep fats high, carbs low, and protein moderate.

lazy keto foods

Certain foods such as processed meats and sugar-free treats should be avoided on any type of keto diet, but they are often included in sample lazy keto meal plans you find online or in health magazines. We wouldn't recommend eating these foods at The Keto Collective, but its up to you at the end of the day. How lazy do you want to get?

It's also important to note that there are no set guidelines for following a lazy keto diet. This means you may end up consuming more fat and protein than the recommended 20-50 grams per day. Eating too much protein is actually not good for keto, and may kick you out of ketosis, so be careful!

All this being said, a low-carb diet may help reduce your calorie intake so can support weight loss, improve diabetes and manage your cardiovascular health, leaving you feeling better - which might be enough for where you are now. Any step in the right direction is a good thing after all!

bacon on lazy keto

Is Lazy Keto Healthy?

It depends on where your starting point is!

If you are eating a typical Western diet of pizza, burgers, and ice cream, then yes! Lazy Keto is going to radically improve your diet and health in no time.

But there are some things you may need to think about if your current position isn't in need of such a drastic change:

  1. The lack of focus on whole foods: While lazy keto does limit carb intake, it doesn't emphasize eating high-quality sources like vegetables, low-GI fruits, and clean protein, which offer important vitamins and minerals essential for good health. 
  2. Unclear macro intake may stifle ketosis: If you don't know what you are eating, how can you make accurate adjustments to get into ketosis? You may need to up your fats or lower your carbs, but that can be hard when you are unsure about your intake. It's easy to under or overestimate our food consumption!
  3. Limited long-term benefits: Without careful tracking of calories and macronutrients, it's difficult to ensure that you're getting enough nutrition from your foods on the lazy keto diet, which could lead to nutrient deficiencies over time if left unchecked.
lazy keto heart

Given its potential drawbacks and restrictive nature, it's important to weigh all aspects before deciding if lazy keto is right for you so that both short-term and long-term benefits are achieved without sacrificing nutritional value or healthful practices along the way.

How To Start Lazy Keto, Lazy Keto for Beginners

Getting started on a low-carb diet can be intimidating, but with lazy keto, you can easily cut carbs without having to worry about strict calorie counting or macronutrient tracking.

The approach is simple: consume fewer than 50g of net carbs per day and make sure that the food you eat contains high amounts of fat.

To start the diet, it's important for you to consider which foods can fit into the diet and your lifestyle.

You don't have to necessarily count every gram of carb - instead try focusing on eating whole foods like vegetables, nuts, seeds, and healthy fats while avoiding processed carbs such as bread and pasta.

It's all about lowering your intake of carbs while upping the fat you eat! If you like to eat fatty meats, you will be in heaven from day one!

It's helpful to focus on meals that are easy to prepare so that you don't overcomplicate things when starting off with your new lifestyle change. Once you have a good idea of what types of foods work best for your lifestyle then it's time to create a grocery list with all the necessary ingredients for each meal.

Get your mind right for this change in your lifestyle. It's not going to be easy, but it will be worth it. You are going to force your body to use fat energy instead of glucose, and it will be a shock to the system! But once you get into ketosis you will understand the fat-burning power that makes this diet work!

lazy shopping list

Lazy Keto Grocery List, What Can I Eat on Lazy Keto?

By shopping smartly for all the right ingredients, you'll be well-equipped to start living a healthier lifestyle with less effort required from day one.

When stocking up on groceries for your lazy keto approach, focus on buying items like eggs, meats (especially fatty cuts), full-fat dairy products like cheese or heavy cream, and non-starchy vegetables like broccoli or spinach. 

Don't forget healthy fats such as avocado oil or olive oil - these are essential components in any successful lazy keto grocery list! By shopping smartly for all the right ingredients, you'll be well-equipped to start living a healthier lifestyle with less effort required from day one.

On a lazy keto meal plan, it's important to avoid certain foods that will increase your daily carb intake beyond what is recommended for this type of diet. But don't worry - there are still plenty of delicious and nutritious snacks and meals that you can enjoy while following the lazy keto approach.

In addition to stocking up on the right foods for your lazy keto grocery list, it's also important to pay attention to serving sizes as well as grams of carbohydrates per day when following this diet. Just because this version of the diet is lazier than a strict ketogenic diet, doesn't mean you can eat loads of carbs per day without getting kicked out of ketosis.

So where possible, stick to the keto staples:

  • Eggs
  • Meats
  • Fish
  • Green Vegetables
  • Fats
  • Oils
  • Cheese
  • Heavy Cream
non keto carb foods

Foods to Avoid While On Lazy Keto

You should know the score by now. Carbs low, fats high, protein moderate!

Keep away from the following:

  • Grains: Bread, pasta, rice, and cereal
  • Beans & Legumes: Chickpeas, lentils, and peas
  • Starchy Vegetables: Potatoes and sweet potatoes
  • Sugary Drinks & Snacks: Sodas and candies
  • Fruits: Citrus fruits, bananas, and apples (Berries are fine)
  • High Carb Sauces & Dressings: BBQ sauce and honey mustard dressing

A few Carbs can still be a part of a healthy keto diet, especially if you are exercising regularly as our muscles love a carb refeed once in a while. If you are having a few extra carbs make sure you are opting for the above-ground veggies and some fruit is ok (berries are lower in sugar than most fruits). 

Lazy keto may be a less restrictive version of the diet, but it isn't dirty keto. So keep it clean where you can!

Final Thoughts on Lazy Leto

Keto-ish eating can be a great gateway to a full keto plan. Or it can simply be a more mindful approach to limiting the amount of carbohydrates in your diet. While you won’t experience the full, rapid weight loss of keto if you’re looking to cut some calories, focus on nutrient-rich food, and improve your overall well-being, this is a great place to start.

While it still promotes significant weight loss, too much reliance on processed or pre-packaged meals can lead to nutrient deficiencies over time.

Lazy keto is a more relaxed version of traditional keto, with no strict tracking or calorie counting, and a goal of limiting carb intake to below 50g per day. This type of diet allows you to still enjoy some of the convenience foods you might be used to while trying to lose weight, such as ready-made meals or pre-packaged snacks.

When following a lazy keto diet, it's important to make sure that you are still getting all the nutrients your body needs by selecting healthy fats and proteins. Foods like nuts, seeds, avocados, and fatty fish are all good sources of healthy fats that will help keep you full for longer periods of time. Lean proteins like chicken breast and eggs also provide essential nutrition while keeping carbohydrates low.

It's important not to fall into the trap of thinking there are no restrictions when following a “lazy” approach to the keto diet - just because something is labeled “low carb” doesn't mean it's healthy or that it won't affect your metabolism negatively. Be mindful about what you put into your body and always choose whole foods over processed options whenever possible.

Lazy keto can ease the user into a healthier feeding routine without making them feel like they're missing out on what they normally enjoy. 

You can reap the benefits of the keto way while avoiding any possible drawbacks associated with too much convenience eating or reduced nutrient intake.

Following a keto diet, lazy or not, isn't for the faint of heart. But if you do decide to commit to a low carbohydrate diet, we are sure you will feel the benefits in next to no time!

Suzie Walker - Keto Collective

Suzie Walker

Suzie Walker is a qualified Nutritional Therapist from the College of Naturopathic Nutrition London and co-founded The Keto Collective, a company that aims to make it easier for those following the keto way of eating to find whole food, great tasting, keto alternatives to their everyday favorites.

Suzie is a passionate believer in the power of the ketogenic diet and has researched the many health benefits of low-carb living.

Her goal is to bring keto to the masses and take it mainstream. 

How often should I follow the lazy keto diet?

The frequency at which you follow the lazy keto diet is ultimately up to you. It's important to remember that this type of diet doesn't require strict adherence; instead, it encourages you to gradually make smarter food choices and become mindful of what you're eating. Generally speaking, it's best to try and stick with your plan as consistently as possible so that you can achieve the best results. However, if life gets in the way and there are days or weeks when following the plan isn't feasible, don't worry too much—just pick back up where you left off whenever possible.

Is there any difference between lazy keto and other low-carb diets?

Yes, there is a difference between lazy keto and other low-carb diets. Lazy keto is an approach to low-carb eating that allows you to relax and enjoy your meals, while still keeping your carb intake under control. You don't have to count every gram of carbs or weigh out food portions; instead, you simply make sure that each meal contains fewer than 50 grams of net carbs. This no-fuss approach makes it easier for busy people to stick to a healthy, low-carb lifestyle without feeling deprived or overwhelmed by all the details.

How much time does it take to follow lazy keto?

Following lazy keto takes less time than other low-carb diets, as it is a more relaxed style of eating. It does not require calorie counting or tracking macronutrients and instead focuses on reducing carbohydrates to a very low level. This makes it easier to follow because you don't have to worry about spending time measuring your food and logging every bite you take. All you need to do is make sure that the food you eat is low in carbs and contains healthy fats and proteins - this can be done quickly with minimal effort!

What kind of exercise should I do while following the lazy keto diet?

Exercising while following the lazy keto diet can be a great way to get your body moving and reach your fitness goals. You don't have to spend hours in the gym every day; low-impact exercises such as yoga, walking, cycling, and swimming are excellent choices for those who want to stay active but don't have much time on their hands. Additionally, high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workouts can help you burn fat faster without putting too much strain on your body. Whatever kind of exercise you decide to do, make sure that it fits into your lifestyle and is something that you enjoy doing!

Are there any supplements I need to take while following the lazy keto diet?

You don't necessarily need to take supplements when following a lazy keto diet, but some people may benefit from them. Supplements can provide additional nutrients that may be missing in your diet due to not eating certain food groups. For example, if you are avoiding dairy products, you may want to consider taking calcium supplements. Additionally, vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids could be beneficial as well. If you're thinking about utilizing any kind of supplement while following the lazy keto diet, it's important to consult with your doctor first.