One of the hardest things about starting out in the ketogenic lifestyle is managing your expectations. A ketogenic lifestyle has incredible physical and mental health benefits, but some people have a harder time than others.
If you are experiencing some difficulties, these are some tips you can use to kickstart your fat burning and to get your brain space revved up and focused.
- Eat more good fat
- Eat less carbs
- Moderate your protein
- Stop using artificial sweeteners (except stevia)
- Listen to your body
- Exercise for stress reduction
- Get plenty of sleep
- DRINK. MORE. WATER.
- Reduce dairy
- Increase your salt
- Make your food
This is a no brainer. If you are stalling in your fat loss, or are starting to feel run down, increase your fat intake. Not only can an increase in fat stimulate fat loss, it will improve your mental focus, memory, and clarity.
I recommend to everyone that they keep their carbs below 50g per day. Eating less carbs is only half the story, though. While you don’t actually need carbs to live, if you crave some, you should direct those cravings to the clean, whole carbs like green leafy vegetables, high fat carbs like avocados and nuts, and other low-glycemic carbs like peppers, celery (slathered in cream cheese), brussels sprouts, jicama, cucumber, or cauliflower, just to name a few. You can eat much more of these foods, because they contain lower concentrations of carbs.
Most likely, this will mean lowering how much protein you eat. High protein levels will have a negative effect on ketosis because the liver will start to break the amino acids down to glucose. Every organ in your body needs protein, so it’s essential, you just need to find the right amount for you.
Just stay away from the artificial sweeteners. Nothing good comes from them. They prevent ketosis, spike insulin, and inhibit fat usage as a fuel. They are just plain bad.
Stevia, however, isn’t artificial, it’s a plant. It’s natural, and it’s awesome. Use it. Love it.
This is a tough one, and it take some trial and error. The closer you get to your goal size, the more you are going to have to listen to your body, because it is trying to achieve a genetic equilibrium. If you feel tired, you should probably get some sleep. If you are anxious and active, channel that energy into exercise or outside work. Your body will tell you what it wants. You just have to tune into it.
I cannot stress this enough. Exercise is probably the most important aspect of stress management. You need to get enough to reap the benefits, but not overdo it and injure yourself or get burned out. It will also kickstart your fat fuel engine, and make you feel super better.
No need to expound on this too much. Getting the correct amount of sleep is fundamental to a well-balanced, healthy life. If you’re tired, get some sleep. Simple as that.
Seriously. You need it. Drink it. Staying hydrated is crucial for avoiding injury and maintaining cell health. And it’s just so simple. Drink water. Every day. A bunch of water. Then repeat.
If you are plateauing, and you find yourself eating a regular supply of dairy, try removing it. One of two things will happen after 21 days. You’ll either break the plateau, or you won’t. If you don’t, then enjoy some cheese, because it wasn’t the culprit. If you do, then you probably want to limit the amount of dairy you eat. Remember, everyone is different, so everyone doesn’t get to enjoy habanero jack sprinkles.
This is also overlooked by many people. A ketogenic lifestyle will flush your system of extra salt. That’s because it is making much more efficient usage of the salt, and the kidneys aren’t holding onto the salt. The fix is simple, add some salt to your meal and enjoy. This will also help improve your mental focus and fatigue (if you’re experiencing that).
One of the strange side effects of being a Ketovangelist is I don’t like eating out any more. I don’t like opening my food. I like to make my food now. I like to know what goes into it, and I like to know how to repeat the deliciousness whenever I want. When you control the ingredients, you control your health.