What To Expect On A Ketogenic Diet
A ketogenic diet is a form of low-carb diet that is quite similar to the Atkins diet. Many people have sworn by this diet because of its ability to shift the body’s main energy source from carbohydrates to fats which can accelerate weight loss. But that is not the only benefit of following this strict diet – studies have also shown that sticking to this high fat, low carb, moderate protein diet can reverse type two diabetes, among many others. Find yourself encouraged to try this diet out? Here’s what to expect:
Keto isn’t just a diet, but a lifestyle
Going on a very low-carb diet isn’t easy. Most foods that are readily available for grabs aren’t usually low carb, or even if they are, they aren’t exactly “keto-friendly.” Going Keto is going to be really tough, especially in the beginning. You’ll have to invest time and effort, from grocery shopping to cooking your own meals, making sure that you are within your daily carb limit. And it’s not just always bacon and butter and all the good stuff, you’ll also have to keep in mind that vegetables are also an important part of a healthy diet, so it is highly suggested that anyone doing this diet can eat as much fiber as they want.
Shifting your body from using carbs to using fat can come with a number of unpleasing symptoms. These symptoms are what they refer to as the “keto flu.” You may be able to feel these symptoms on the first couple of days of dieting. Headaches and feeling nauseus are among the most common symptoms people experience. You may also notice a decrease in strength, especially at the gym. Personally, I experienced these symptoms on my third day into the diet, along with an upset stomach. Also, I felt sluggish, especially during my workouts. However, these symptoms are completely normal, and they should go away after a couple of days. As for the strength, you should be able to regain your energy back once your body has completely adapted to keto, about a couple of weeks [or so] into the diet.
Constant carb craving during the first two weeks
Many people, myself included, find it hard to steer clear of carbs. I found myself constantly craving for bread, pasta, and other carbs during my first two weeks. However, this is completely normal. Many people don’t survive this diet because they give in to such cravings. But after your body has completely adapted, about third week into the diet, you will notice that these cravings will go away until you no longer even think of consuming carbs for a second.
Experts suggest that one should only consume about 20g of net carbs during the first two weeks of doing keto. By doing so, you are putting your body into deep ketosis, making it faster for your system to adapt and rid of any carb cravings. One your body has completely adapted, you may gradually add in 5g of net carbs each week after until you find just the right amount. Personally, I’m comfortable consuming about 35g of net carbs a day, without wanting to binge on bread, sugar, or any other form of carbs.
Doing keto means you’ll have bid goodbye to sugar…all forms of it
Love fruits? Well, fruits also contain natural sugar, and all forms of sugar is a big no-no if you’re on keto. So be careful on that, too. If you really can’t avoid them, go for berries – they don’t have as much carbs/sugar compared to most fruits.
And… if you love cookies as much as I do, then this is going to be even tougher. Going on a keto diet also means that you have to rid of sugary foods for it to work. I remember my first week into keto, and I was badly craving that butterscotch frappuccino that I normally get from Starbucks. I wanted it so much that I bought it only to consume a small portion of it, with hopes that I’ll satisfy my sweet tooth somehow. However, that only made things worse for me. What I did caused me to crave even more sweets, as though I teased my tastebuds really badly when I sipped on that frappuccino, messing up my diet. So the clear advice here is to stay away from all forms of sugar, if at all possible.