The keto diet is not just a passing fad, it’s become a shining light of the health trend, embraced by all who want to lose weight, and fast. The science behind how keto works is complex, but it comes down to one simple and very important switch - sugar, for ketones. It takes your body’s use of glucose as its main source of energy and switches it for ketones, which are made using and breaking down fat as a different source of fuel.
This switch is absolutely huge news for your body, which is then able to efficiently and quickly drop excess fat. The diet also has numerous other health benefits too, but in most cases, the reason people go onto a ketogenic diet is for weight loss. If you’re already investing in keto as a healthy diet to follow the chances are that you want to be doing it right. It has the potential to help you lose as much as 10 pounds a week, but only if you’re actually getting into ketosis. So how do you get into ketosis? Even more importantly, how do you know you’re in it?
Don’t worry, we’ve got all the information you need to get into, and identify ketosis easily:
How To Get Into Ketosis
Ketosis is at the heart of how the keto diet works. It means that your body has reached a metabolic state where the body turns fat into ketones which are then used as energy. Some people on the keto diet find that getting into ketosis can take an age. Some people even struggle to get into ketosis, period. Although everybody has a different bio molecular makeup, the fact remains that several factors will help anybody get into ketosis faster and those are:
Eat Less Carbs
Eating low-carb is one of the most - if not the most - important factor when it comes to losing weight on a keto diet. The area where you might be struggling, is that you’re following the diet but you haven’t yet reached your own personal level of carb restriction needed for you to reach ketosis.
That’s right, everybody has a level of carb restriction that is individual to them, in order to reach ketosis. So whilst some people may be able to eat 40 grams of carbs and reach ketosis, others have to eat 20 grams or less in order to reach ketosis.
The bottom line is, if your carb intake isn’t working yet, restrict it gram by gram until you start to see results. Here are 18 amazing keto recipe ideas to help.
Moving more can help you get into ketosis because you burn the glucose up first, pushing your body to then start making and breaking down ketones for energy instead.
Get Some Coconut Oil In Your Diet
Coconut oil is packed full of something called MCT, otherwise known as medium-chain triglycerides. The MCT aspect of coconut oil is the important part because those fats are absorbed by the liver super-fast, and then used straightaway for energy or to be made into those all important ketones.
As an added benefit MCT is also thought to be a really great way to boost ketones in those with nervous system disorders.
To get your coconut oil boost, here’s a coconut oil fat bomb recipe video.
Lots of people on keto try fasting which often involves eating within certain hours of the day, like 11am and 7pm only. Some people use intermittent fasting, and others try the fat fasting approach instead. All of these methods can help to boost your ketone production.
Eat More Healthy Fat
Consuming around 60% of your calories from fats is thought to be a great way to boost your ketones. You should make sure those fat sources are healthy, and come from a variety of plant based and animal sources.
It is also important to keep an eye on your overall calorie intake to make sure you don’t end up scuppering your weight loss goals by accident.
Eat More Protein
With a keto diet, you have to restrict both carbs and protein to ensure you can maximise your opportunities to create ketones.
However, if you cut back too much on protein you may find yourself in difficulties with the diet. Firstly, because your liver has to give glucose to the parts of the body that don’t use ketones to work, like parts of the kidneys and the brain. Secondly, because protein is used to maintain your muscle mass.
Although you have to restrict protein, you shouldn’t cut it down completely to get into ketosis. As with fats, you should also make sure the sources of protein are from both vegan and animal sources to boost your nutritional intake.
You can calculate your ideal keto protein intake with this calculation:
Ideal Body Weight (in pounds) X 0.55.
How To Know When You’re In Ketosis
There are several signs you are in ketosis which are:
- A home testing kit tells you your blood contains ketones
- You’re sustaining a good level of weight loss
- You’re more thirty than usual (make sure you drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration complications)
- Muscle cramps (see your doctor if this symptom persists as you may need supplements)
- Headaches (see your doctor if these persist longer than a week)
- Fatigue which is a temporary occurrence when your body switches to burning ketones and not glucose for energy
- Disturbed sleep
- Bad breath or ‘ketone breath’
- Urinating more
- Appetite suppression
Any negative side effects that don’t go away warrant a change in your diet, supplements or a visit to the doctor to check everything is OK.
“I find I have a much better drive and focus when in a state of ketosis. I have a lot more mental clarity and productivity.” - Bryan Barksdale
With the above information you can not only improve your chance of getting into ketosis, but boost your opportunity to recognise when it’s happening too. The keto diet is a journey, not a destination and hopefully you’ll find plenty of weight loss success on this path soon enough.
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