Success Sundays - find what works for you
Ok, sorry, jumping around again but today I wanted to write about my success point number 8 - ‘Find what works for you’ because I’m a great believer that we are all different and what will work for one person may not work for another. I think this goes for dieting in general as well as aspects of keto. For example, some people can diet by ‘cutting down a little’ on those foods that cause them to gain weight whereas for others (like me!) an all or nothing process is required. I’m not sure why but I’ve never been able to diet ‘a bit’. For me…I’m eating anything and everything that I want or I’m in a full on diet/way of eating, end of story!
When I did Slimming World back in the days of ‘red & green’ (red was a lower carb approach and green a higher carb but lower protein approach). I always lost weight on red and stalled or gained on green - My body obviously just does better on low carb. So, I hear you shouting, why not just stay on SW? Well, I found it so much more difficult to stay on track because you were still allowed some sugar and some carbs and as I’ve said before ‘some carbs’ just makes me want to eat ‘all carbs’!!
So that brings us back to low carb and keto - surely there’s no wiggle room in finding what works for you, but on the contrary, keto is a fine balance and those who do best at it (not me yet by the way!) know exactly what works for them and what doesn’t. So today I thought I’d give you a top 10 list of things that can cause you to come out of ketosis or stall - that way if you’re not doing to well, maybe have a look at this list, tweak what you’re doing and learn what works for you and your body.
1. Alcohol - there are some lower carb alcohols that you can fit into your daily carb limit but for some people, alcohol can knock them out of ketosis, or (like me with biscuits) they can’t stop at one drink.
2. Carb count - some people can lose weight on 60-100g of carb per day - others need to be under 20. Find your level - you can always raise it when you reach your goal weight.
3. Artificial Sweeteners - there are some sweeteners which knock you out of ketosis, some that (for some people) mimic the cravings you get from eating sugar, and some that can have quite a bad laxative effect! Get to know how your body reacts to different sweeteners or better still, learn to live without sweet things.
4. Sugar free drinks - these are definitely allowable going by carb count but can have similar effects to other artificially sweetened things. This is my big downfall and I know I’d do better if I could ditch the diet fizzy pop completely and just stick to water.
5. Calorie count - to count or not to count? I’ve read lots of articles saying that weight loss is all about counting calories and many saying it’s not about total calories but where the calories come from. I hate counting calories but if it is making a difference to your weight loss Maybe count for a week to see how changing the total calories changes your loss.
6. Dairy - another one of my great loves but something else that can cause stalling. If you’re eating a lot of dairy and not losing weight this could be something to look at. The reason is that although relatively low carb it is easy to eat a lot of calories through dairy.
7. Too much protein - yes, I know…this one was a disappointment for me too, because when you’re first on keto you learn that things like meat are super low carb so you want to eat lots of it, but too much protein and your body will convert it to sugars. This is why fat with meat is important - it fills you up more quickly so you don’t eat quite as much protein. Again - find out what works for you.
8. Exercise - for some people this is a vital part of any weight loss programme and for others it is to be avoided at all costs. My advice is to find exercise that you like to do and do it because you enjoy it, not because it’s a regime.
9. Keto products (keto breads, low carb cakes) - to some these are evil incarnate and have no place in a keto diet. My philosophy is if they help you stay on keto and are not causing you to to stall then go for it. I think so called ‘clean keto’ is probably better but I’d rather have a sandwich with low carb bread now and again rather than fall off the wagon.
10. Fat - again this one is a balance, too little fat and you won’t feel satisfied and you’ll want to eat more protein, too much and it will ramp up the calories. I am often guilty of overdoing the fat and I’m still working out how much I can have and still lose weight.
That’s it for now. Take time to learn what works for you, though do bear in mind that weight loss is only one of the positive side effects of a keto way of eating, but more about that another time.