How to Start a Keto Diet
For those who are considering trying a ketogenic diet in order to lose weight, it can be hard to know exactly where to get started.
Here we take you through the basics – what is Keto and what does it entail; along with informative steps, tips, and advice that you need to get started on your weight loss journey.
What is Keto?
The Keto diet follows a very low carb, high fat, and moderate protein eating plan that works by putting your body into a metabolic state known as ketosis. Ketosis occurs when the body’s intake of its primary energy source carbohydrates is greatly restricted, forcing the body to become efficient at burning fat instead.
This diet can be highly successful if done correctly and not only helps to promote weight loss but also significant reductions in blood sugar and insulin levels that help to manage and control type 2 diabetes.
In order to see results, it is important to create a well-constructed Keto friendly diet plan that includes the necessary fibres as well as a moderate amount of protein. Around 65% of your daily calorie intake should be coming from healthy fats and less than 40 grams of carbohydrates should be consumed each day.
Steps For Getting Started
Here are some practical tips, tricks, and advice on how to prepare yourself as best as possible before you start your Keto diet;
Know What You Can and Can’t Eat
Keeping some sort of reminder list in your kitchen or on your phone can be really helpful in the beginning when you might feel overwhelmed at trying to remember which foods are ok and what you need to limit or avoid completely. Having a list handy can save you a lot of time googling every single food item before you try to have a snack or make a meal.
Get into the ‘Fat’ Mindset
A lot of people who try Keto have been on other diets before and maybe in the habit of avoiding things that are full fat like milks, yoghurts, and other food products. However, Keto works on the consumption of healthy fats so it’s important to get into the right frame of mind and welcome things into your diet that you may have removed or restricted before. This can include things such as fish, oils like avocado, coconut and olive, nuts, and seeds.
Test Your Ketone Levels
There’s no point in putting in the work if you are only guessing that your body is in fact in ketosis. There are a number of cheap tests available online that can quickly and easily determine if you are in ketosis. Some of the most common ways to test this are through the use of;
- A breath analyzer that tests for ketones in the breath
- Indicator strips to check urinary levels
- Blood ketone meter to test blood levels
Embrace Your Inner Chef
The more you can make your meals from scratch at home the better as this cuts down on high carb, processed foods that don’t fit in with your diet. You don’t have to be a whizz in the kitchen, start off small and work on trying different Keto-friendly foods and recipes to keep you on track and your tastebuds happy.
Be Aware of the Potential Side Effects
As with any dietary changes, keto can also come with some possible side effects that it’s always best to prepare for and be aware of. The most common one of these is ‘Keto flu’ which can occur during the early stages when the body is adjusting to the change of burning fat for energy. It is not the same for everybody and some people may have no issues at all whilst others can feel extremely lethargic and experience mental fog. As long as you ensure that you take it easy for the first week or so, stick to light exercise, increase your water intake and get plenty of rest then the body should adjust just fine. Also, get enough natural Celtic sea salt or pink Himalayan salt (do not use table salt), especially during this first week, to minimise symptoms of the initial “keto flu”.
Always Be Prepared
Whether you are out and about or at home, make sure you always have easy access to Keto friendly foods. Leaving it until you are really hungry only to find that you have nothing in the cupboards will more than likely result in you eating food that isn’t in line with your Keto plan. Food prepping and freezing meals or having keto snacks in your handbag or car is a great way to ensure that you aren’t reaching for the carbs at the first sign of hunger.
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