The truth about keto weight loss – and why we don’t say “diet”
So here’s the thing about keto. Most keto fans come to it as a weight-loss diet.
But at Keto Collective, drawing on our nutritionist expertise, we prefer to say “way of eating” (WOE). There’s a subtlety that makes it about the long-term rather than a quick short-term fix.
We also believe that going keto is so much more than a diet. It’s a whole lifestyle change. It’s about changing your entire relationship with food, and an understanding of how food works in your body.
And it takes commitment to that healthier way of being to really get results from improved energy endurance through to reduced inflammation.
Wait, you want me to eat more fat?
Keto is based on a way of eating that promotes very low-carb, moderate protein and high-fat foods – or simply put – LCHF.
This sounds a bit scary and counter-intuitive at first. And it goes against everything we’ve been taught about nutrition, turning the traditional food pyramid on its head. We’re huge fans of good fats, it’s the processed fats you want to ditch. Find out more about fats here
The purpose of the keto way of eating is to change the way your body converts certain foods into energy.
Carbs do what?
As a rule, we overeat carbohydrates. There, we said it.
When sugar goes into your cells, it converts into fat. So we gain weight. Essentially, you want your body to burn fat and use itself as an energy source instead.
This is where ketosis comes in.
By restricting your carb intake and increasing your fat intake, your body switches into a state call “ketosis”. This metabolic process is where your body fuels itself from its own fat stores. In ketosis, your liver converts fat into ketones which then provide your body – especially your brain – with an energy source. And burning fat 24/7.
Getting into ketosis
This is the maths part. To get into ketosis, you need to eat no more than 50g of net carbs a day. For fat loss, aim for 20g.
Let’s put this into perspective: a piece of bread is 25g carbs.
It can take around 3 days to get your body into ketosis, eating a (very) low-carb, high fat diet.
But you’ll see results fast.
How much weight can you expect to lose?
As with all weight loss, it will always depend on the person but on average, in the first four weeks you can lose up to 14 pounds, allowing for water weight.
For many, the challenge is getting to the end of the first month. In our experience, when people reach this major milestone, they’re already so fat adapted and used to the keto way of eating, they embrace the lifestyle change even more.
Keto can be a great way to address weight gain related to health issues too. Take the menopause where women are more prone to gaining weight as their metabolism slows. Because the low-carb element of ketosis helps to balance hormones, it can kikckstart your metabolism to regain its efficiency, losing weight as your body runs on fat rather than sugar.
How to start your new plan
If you’re new to keto, you may want to ease your way into the eating plan.
For the first week think about gently swapping out any processed carbs. Also look at where you can introduce heathy fats. Because the narrative around avoiding fats is so ingrained, most people under-eat fat when going keto. Look at where you can add more healthy fats and high-quality animal sources, from oils (olive, avocado and coconut) through to sources such as eggs, nuts, and fish.
Try to avoid the temptation to over-complicate the keto way of eating at first: we have a helpful list here.
The key is consistency. Stick with it. Before you know it, it will be second nature and you’ll never have felt better!