It’s pretty much ketosis or nothing while on the ketogenic diet. The entire diet is predicated on an accelerated breakdown of body fat to utilize as energy. There’s some simple rules you’ll need to follow, and a few mistakes you’ll need to avoid to get there.
What Is Ketosis?
Ketosis is the foundation of the Ketogenic diet. When on an extreme carb restrictive diet your body will utilize body fat at an accelerated rate to compensate for low energy foods. Body fat will be broken down producing compounds called ketones your body can utilize as its main source of energy.
Here’s how to get into ketosis, and a few steps you’ll need to do everyday.
Tip 1: Reduce Carbs
Most people using the Keto diet for weight loss are after the holy grail of dieting – loss of body fat. While the keto diet is incredibly effective, due to ketosis, it isn’t something you can “kind of” do.
You’re either in ketosis or you’re not.
In order to influence your body to break down body fat at an accelerated rate you’ll need to reduce carbohydrates to an extreme level. For most people to get into ketosis, this means eating less than 20 grams of carbs for the entire day.
It won’t be enough to just reduce carbs a little. You have stay below the carb threshold or you’re unlikely to get into a state of ketosis.
Tip 2: Increase Fats
What separates Keto from most low carb diets is the consumption of fat calories. Most low carb diets are also high protein diets.
Keto is NOT a high protein diet. It’s a low carb, high fat diet.
Here’s why it’s important to consume at least 70% of your daily calories from fat:
Increases ketone levels
Provides a stable energy source
Helps you feel full after meals
Here’s a quick list of Keto fats to choose from.
Tip 3: Eat The Right Amount Of Protein
If you were to restrict carbs and protein to an extreme level it would result in a large production of ketones for your body to use as energy. But this isn’t the goal.
If you don’t consume enough protein on Keto it can disrupt the glucose process in the liver, which is needed to supply energy to organs (brain and kidneys) that can’t utilize ketones .
Eating too much protein can disrupt ketosis, but not eating enough can result in feeling sick.
Here’s why you need to eat at least 20% of your calories from protein:
Preserves muscle mass
Helps induce ketosis
Helps maintain ketosis
Tip 4: Use A Short Term Fast
One of the primary reasons the Keto diet is often combined with intermittent fasting is because it can help get into ketosis at a faster rate. A daily fast of 14-16 hours is optimal and usually all that’s needed, but you can accelerate the process with a full day fast.
If you’d like to try an intermittent fast:
Tip 5: Exercise To Deplete Glycogen
Your body’s preferred energy source will always be from glycogen stores. The normal process is to deplete your energy stores through physical activity, and then refill them through high energy foods (carbohydrates).
When you restrict carbohydrates, and don’t refill glycogen stores, your body will utilize alternate energy sources to fill its needs. The faster you deplete your glycogen stores the faster your body will need to break down body fat for energy.
Final Thoughts On Ketosis
Ketosis shouldn’t be viewed as a switch that is easily turned on and off. It’s a process that often takes a few days to achieve for most people. So if you’re constantly alternating between a keto day, and a regular eating day, you’re less likely to get into ketosis.
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