The ketogenic diet, more commonly referred to simply as keto, is a dieting and health trend that has gained popularity in recent years. Staunch followers of the keto diet praise its ability to help them lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
If losing weight is your goal, you’ve probably chanced across the keto diet before and might be wondering if it is really suitable for you.
In this post, we take a closer look at what the keto diet really entails, its benefits and the different types of food you can eat if you choose to go on it. If you’re wondering how fast you can lose weight on keto, we also answer that question to help you make a more informed decision about whether to start a keto diet.
Understanding the Ketogenic Diet
To understand how the ketogenic diet works, it helps to start with a baseline understanding of the way our bodies use energy. For most people, energy is mainly derived from glucose, which is converted from the carbohydrates you consume. Any excess glucose that is not used will then be stored as fat. As such, overconsumption of carbohydrates can result in weight gain and fat buildup in the long term1.
The ketogenic diet centers on significantly reducing carbohydrate consumption to help the body achieve a state of ketosis. When this occurs, the body will start to burn the stored fats for energy2. To achieve ketosis, followers of the keto diet typically restrict their carbohydrate consumption to between 20g to 50g per day, typically from non-starchy vegetables3.
Benefits of Keto
While losing weight is the most common goal for individuals who start on the keto diet, the other benefits of the diet should not be overlooked as well. The keto diet can also be beneficial to your health and well-being in other ways, such as:
How Fast Do You Lose Weight on Keto?
There's lots of scientific evidence showing that the keto diet is effective for weight loss. A study conducted over 2 months with 34 obese individuals found that those who ate a ketogenic diet lost 9.7% of their body fat, whereas those on a low-fat diet lost just 2.1%6.
Nonetheless, there are many factors that can affect the rate at which you lose weight while on the keto diet. Some of these factors include:
Rapid Initial Weight Loss
Typically, most people who first start on the keto diet tend to experience rapid weight loss during the initial stages. It is common to lose up to 10 pounds within the initial two weeks of embarking on a keto diet8. However, it is crucial for you not to break your diet immediately after losing this weight, as it is easy to put the weight back on as quickly as you lost it.
Sustainable Long-term Weight Loss
After the initial weight loss, continuing on the keto diet is essential for you to achieve sustainable long-term weight loss.
Another important point to note is the importance of maintaining a caloric deficit. A caloric deficit refers to a state where you’re constantly consuming less calories than your body needs. This enables your body to burn calories that have been stored or accumulated in fat for energy.
How Long Should You Stay on Keto?
The length of your keto diet would ultimately depend on your personal goals and other factors. A common goal for many people who embark on the keto diet is to break certain unhealthy food habits or to rapidly lose weight. If you fall into this category, you can consider stopping your keto diet after achieving your target.
Longer keto diets are also common, although an important consideration in such diets is sustainability. In particular, if you plan on going on a long-term keto diet, it is crucial that you ensure that you’re consuming sufficient nutrients to avoid suffering from any negative consequences.
30-Day Keto Challenge
If it’s your first time going on the keto diet, you can also consider trying out the 30-day keto challenge. A one-month timeline is typically long enough such that you will start to see the results of your efforts but also short enough such that you don’t experience too many unwanted side effects.
If you successfully complete your 30-day keto challenge, you may then decide whether or not you want to continue your keto diet.
What Can You Eat on Keto?
If you’ve never been on the keto diet before or are otherwise new to the concept, you might be unfamiliar with the foods that you can and cannot eat. As a general rule of thumb, the only restriction that you face on a keto diet is ensuring that you do not exceed 20–50g of carbohydrates a day. This translates to having to consume primarily non-starchy and low-carbohydrate foods.
At the same time, it is crucial to ensure that you do not compromise on your other macronutrients even as you are on a keto diet. Ensure that you continue to consume a healthy mix of foods from different food groups. You can also replace traditionally high-carbohydrate foods with low-carbohydrate replacements.
KBosh’s Keto Pizza Crusts
One example of how you can substitute high-carbohydrate pizzas is with KBosh’s keto pizza crusts. Here at KBosh, we make our keto pizza crusts using only low-carbohydrate ingredients ranging from cauliflower and kale to zucchini and broccoli.
With just 3g of net carbs per crust, you can continue to enjoy your favorite pizzas without any of the guilt while you embark on your keto weight loss journey.
For ideas on how you can spruce up your low carb pizzas without compromising on flavor and quality, check out these keto-friendly pizza sauces for your next pie or these delicious, healthy pizza topping ideas.