Does keto work for slim persons?


Hi everybody, I’m new here and wonder if what I’m after can indeed be done.
I’m 66, 5’11 and 170 lbs. Pretty good health, but obsessed with the fat pillows at my waist.
Yes, I know, I’m paranoid.
I follow a low carb (not keto) healthy diet, plenty of greens, etc., moderate exercise daily, but those fat pillows seem to be there to stay. After reading a lot on the subject I’m inclined to think that keto might be the answer.
A colleague at work lost around 130 lbs in one year, so I know first hand it works, but he also was over 400 lbs when he started and I read that the more overweight you are the better the results up to a point. Meaning that for slim people it may not be as efficient.
So what do you think? Looking for advice.

(Robin) #2

Wow, you sound pretty healthy to me. Keto can’t hurt you and is a healthy lifestyle. But many of us have to accept those last little rolls around the waist. Especially when you don’t have any (more) weight to lose.

If you figure it out, alert the media! :vulcan_salute:t2:

(Michael) #3

Might want to pair keto first to adapt with Time Restricted Eating. Fasting can always work if those are insufficient. Start with keto though and see if that is enough to attain your goals.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #4

Q. Does keto work for slim persons?

A. Define “work”

Because so many people discover keto in the context of needing to shed excess stored fat, it is often forgotten that a ketogenic diet is first and foremost a tool for healing a damaged metabolism. (Obesity is often one of the symptoms of that damage.) Fat loss, however important it may be to someone’s goals, is simply a delightful side effect of the metabolic healing.

And the body is only going to want to part with so much of its resources at any given time. In my case, my pre-diabetes has been reversed, my blood pressure and heart rate have normalised, and my inflammatory markers have all returned to normal. That’s keto “working,” in my book. The loss of 80 lbs./36 kg without exercise or calorie-counting was helpful, too, since it removed a number of unpleasant difficulties from my life. And I could certainly stand to lose as much again. But it was the metabolic healing I was after, since Type II diabetes runs rife in my family, so I am chuffed.

(J Nieuwland) #5

What Paul said, exactly. I’m not on Keto, but on Carnivore. I started it because of heavy joint inflammation, and it also stopped diabetis from pushing through. I’ve lost all the fatties around my waist in no time, for me it was an extra. I feel better than ever.
I put my daughter on Keto mainly for adhd, but now beside that it helps for that, her energy levels stabilised and she grows better. In her head and in her body. She also feels better than ever.
Both Keto and Carnivore have so many benefits besides loosing weight, that weightloss becomes the plus, instead of the goal.

(Robin) #6

We’ll stated.


I think this is easily a body issue, confront with therapy type issue in that if you ‘are that slim’ as you state yet fixate on one point, I think it has big underlying issues.

I say a tad of therapy would not hurt you but NO ONE ever wants to say just that.

I don’t know your background, your life, your journey but finding ‘life in a love handle’ gone I don’t think quite will work here???

big assumptions on my part truly cause WE ALL HAVE mental blocks. Life stopping forces. Body Image we can’t control and we have to find a way out. The way out could be some therapy in a small way to help you possibly with just that.

Again don’t know ya or your life ever on that post but I feel like you are ‘needing’ and keto plan while fab won’t give it all to you in a way ya know…again just my thoughts on it and if not right, disregard, but if one ‘needs’ more than when one is ‘kinda right’ there in good health form I can only say hmmm…

but I am a massive hmmmm…in progress also :slight_smile:
wishing you the best way forward. ain’t always about food in life ya know…some times we require way more! :sunny:


Dr Paul Mason led me to believe that while in ketosis the body can target and burn its own fat, while not impacting muscle mass too much. And since I don’t have much muscle given my age and size, I would like to keep the little I have.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #9

The key to retaining muscle is to eat enough protein (for the amino acids to replace and preserve muscle tissue) and enough fat (to provide enough energy that the body doesn’t need to scavenge it from wherever it can). A well-formulated ketogenic diet may actually cause some people to put on muscle, especially if they have assiduously restricted their caloric intake for long enough.

A ketogenic diet eaten to satiety can, in fact, allow us to shed excess fat and increase lean mass at the same time. Dr. Stephen Phinney tells of a study he did, in which a group of women were put on an ad libitum ketogenic diet. The participants lost an average of 14 lbs./6.4 kg, except for one woman, whose weight loss was half that amount. She got all upset, until Dr. Phinney had a body composition scan done, and it turned out that, like all the other women, she had indeed lost 14 lbs. of fat, but she had also gained 7 lbs. of lean mass. Sam Feltham had a similar experience on his 6000-calorie keto diet experiment: he gained 1.3 kg, but lost 3 cm from his waist. So again, here is someone who lost fat and gained lean mass at the same time.

(Becky S.) #10

I am a bit in Legrele’s camp.

I am just about to be 55. I am 5-4 and 139, not horrible, but wouldn’t it be nice to get rid of my belly.

This if my first post. My husband and daughter are both on the spectrum and I had started us all down the Keto path about 5 years ago for that reason and good overall health. I started listening to 2 Keto Dudes about 3 months ago and have been learning so much and tweaking my keto in take (for the better) ever since (just under 8 weeks without one cheat and no alcohol).

My problem is, before messing around with it and really honing in on my intake with My Fitness Pal and my macros and tweaking my protein when I listen to their different shows about how much to eat I felt great, lots of energy, great sleep, etc. I have been exhausted and slumpy since trying to tweak things. I tried to a fast about two weeks ago just for a couple of days and that was very difficult and ended in vomiting up the liquid I was trying to put in. My assumption is that it was either too early for me or I don’t have the fat to do that, meaning my body is happy where it is?

Other side note, I have been plateaued at this weight for almost the entire 5 years (frustrated tone here) while my husband and daughter trimmed out weight he didn’t even intend to loose.

Other information? I work a desk job but take a 20 min power walk in the middle of my day five days a week. I walk a 5K 4 times a week and do a HITT run/walk with my neighbor the other 3 days. I didn’t loose anything even when I was her partner in training to hike the Grand Canyon and we walked and hiked miles and miles every week. My size in measurements, also the unchanged.

Fitness Pal Macros: Protein 53, Fat 125, Carbs are always under 20g but usually between 5 - 15 (Carbs not net carbs - one of my tweaks). Calories that I shoot for 1300 but I don’t always get there because I am not really counting those.

Any suggestions?

(Eric) #11

One possibility is that your calories are too low and preventing you from losing that weight. 1300 calories that you don’t always make it to, seems way to low, and if your body thinks you are starving it, it will do everything possible to hold on to that weight and you may also have lowered your BMR in the process. Many have found that not tracking calories resulted in more calories and eventual weight loss. Also considering the amount of exercise you listed as well, it really sounds like your calorie deficit is too great and your body won’t let go of that fat. Just my 2 cents.

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #12

So stop tweaking, lol! (And before I forget, welcome to the forums!)

Seriously, the only really important thing is to limit your carbohydrate intake, to less than 20 g/day, if you can manage it. Your personal carb threshold may actually be higher than that—it depends on how insulin-resistant or -sensitive you are, among other things—but a 20-g limit will virtually guarantee you success, unless you are exceptionally insulin-resistant. I’d say if things were going well before you started tweaking, then whatever level your carb intake was at should be fine.

Don’t listen to apps, except to find out how much carbohydrate is in the foods you want to eat. Especially, pay no attention to the level of calories they tell you to eat. If you are limiting your carb intake, you can safely eat as much food as you need to satisfy your hunger, whether that be a lot or a little.

And especially don’t fear fat, and especially not saturated fat. This goes against everything we are told, but everything we are told is wrong. It’s based on faulty science, and a lot of data exist to contradict those notions. The cause of metabolic dysfunction—leading to obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, gout, leaky bowel syndrome, certain cancers, and most likely Alzheimer’s disease, schizophrenia, Parkinson’s disease, and many more problems—is the insulin-resistance resulting from a high-glucose (i.e., carbohydrate) diet. And the cure is to cut the carbs, so that insulin can drop down to healthy levels again.

Fat, unlike glucose/carbohydrate, elicits only the barest insulin response, the minimum necessary for survival. It is therefore the ideal source of energy to replace the energy lost from cutting carbohydrate. And the healthiest fats, it turns out, are mono-unsaturated and saturated, so the best fats to cook with are butter/ghee, bacon grease, lard, and tallow. You are likely to feel a lot better if you avoid the industrial seed oils (soy, corn, cornflower, sunflower, safflower, cottonseed, peanut, canola, and so forth).

P.S.—Unless you only weigh around 110 lbs./50 kg, 53 g is not nearly enough protein. You should be eating 65-127 g of protein, or 260-560 g (9-19 oz.) of meat. And get enough fat to satisfy your hunger. Ideally, you should be satisfied enough to go several hours between meals, without snacking.

(Becky S.) #13

Thank you both for your responses and for the warm welcome!

I do love Keto almost as much as bacon and this is probably the longest stretch I have gone without having a Fat Friday (what I used to call a day I could just eat anything I was craving that was naughty).

I hear you on all of the everything! I’m not a real calorie counter but The Dudes discuss protein A LOT so I thought maybe I was doing that part incorrectly so I dialed that back and that is when my calories were dropping along with that reduction. I’ve eliminated all the other culprits like store bought bars and quick fixes and have felt pretty good about making my own versions of snacks instead. I know I am my own snowflake but do you think while I up my calories and my protein increases that will not mess me up? Just keep the carbs locked down?

The calorie deficit sounds like the likely cause just so weird that I am not concentrating on that but that is probably why I feel just so yucky and worn out all the time. It’s like I’m eating carbs without the bloat!

Thank you my new keto friends!


Keto does the same thing for everybody, it doesn’t change / break any rules. Around the waist is always the last to go, it’s comes down to just getting your bodyfat down to a % where it burns off.

Do you know what you currently eat now on low carb macro wise? Are you active or sedentary?

People who are really over weight lose weight fast because their TDEE is off the charts due to their size. It takes a LOT of calories to move a 400lbs person around! The closer to a healthy weight you are, it fights you more.

(Becky S.) #15

I do think that might be part of my problem Ifod14. I guess my biggest concern at the moment is how exhausted I am when I know from past experience that I should not be this way. I should be more of an energizer bunny and right now I fight the couches loud shouts for me.

My typical week: I work a desk job but take a 20 min power walk in the middle of my day five days a week. I walk a 5K 4 times a week and do a HITT run/walk with my neighbor the other 3 days. I may also go on a walk with the hubby after the HITT run/walk, sometimes another 5K, sometimes a little less.

Fitness Pal Macros: Protein 53, Fat 125, Carbs are always under 20g but usually between 5 - 15 (Carbs not net carbs - one of my tweaks). Calories that I shoot for 1300 but I don’t always get there because I am not really counting those.

Maybe I’m just in that weight around the waist is the last to go category…

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #16

Yes, you are unique, just like all the rest of us! :grin:

And no, increasing your calories and protein will not mess you up. People have been known to eat 3000-6000 cals/day and still lose weight. Or put on muscle, while still losing fat. The key is in what we eat, not how much. Of course there are limits, but if you eat enough to satisfy your hunger and stop eating at that point, you will be fine. In the event that your appetite hormones are all broken, we can help you deal with that later, but for now, eat to satiety. It will seem like a lot at first, but when your insulin stops interfering with your appetite hormones, you are likely to experience a sharp drop in appetite. Again, if that never happens, we will help you deal with it, but give yourself a few months of adjustment first.


Welcome, @BeckyS!
I would need some super good and reliable medical reason to try to keep my protein somewhat low (I probably would fail but I would do much for health even if it sounds so wrong that some people has a condition and they need to eat low-protein).
53g protein would be impossible for me personally. am 5’4" too, 165lbs since years now (stupid stress gain, it exists and it is stubborn). Our lean bodyweight is probably similar. I would aim for 80-100g protein normally but sadly I can’t do that, I NEED 120g for satiation and it’s too easy to go beyond 200g… :frowning: But it never caused me any problem. And it’s not just me, others experienced it’s fine to eat high protein too, of course not everyone.
Our ideal/okay protein intake should be a range anyway, not a single fixed number.

We all have an upper limit for protein, the human body can’t handle just any amount of it but most of us don’t seem to able to overdo it, at least not without extreme actual efforts.
So unless you know that your individual body requires a lower protein diet for some reason, I don’t see why you need to enforce that your protein intake stays that low (all the time. it’s fine to have lower days if you can pull them off. I can’t, my very low-cal days have 100-120g protein, it’s sooo predictable :D). Can’t you just let your body lead the way first? If it’s in a good shape enough to know what is good for it. Such a body is very, very helpful. Mine keeps my protein at its good range all the time, I don’t need to do anything, calories, carbs, fat don’t matter, it’s always in its “feels good” range. I still try to eat the bare minimum of it (my 120g) but if it’s higher, it’s still good. And I never go super high, I just stop as I get too satiated. Works well if my fat intake stays fine.
In an ideal case, your body guides you so well that your macros are just fine automatically. They may vary but that’s normal, we aren’t robots. I don’t even understand how anyone can eat to numbers.

(Becky S.) #18

You guys are great! I think, even after doing what I would have to call imperfect keto all these years I still feel like eating more feels like too much.

I will work on that psychological hurdle and let you know how it goes. Maybe I will use My Fitness Pal but kind of in reverse and as a push to up my intake as opposed to a marker that I should not pass. Maybe I was doing that without even recognizing it.

Funny how even after all this time I’m still a bit brainwashed eh?!

I loved how we seem to be similar in our body-types @Shinita, thank you for sharing that and pointing it out and what your intake is, it is super helpful to be able to reflect on that.

I will keep calm and Keto on and on because it is the best. (I didn’t mention I am off my statin and my estrogen patches thanks to Keto and the information from The Dudes)

(Bacon is a many-splendoured thing) #19

At the very least, set it to Maintenance mode, instead of to Loss. That will give you a much more realistic calorie level.


That’s easy! Put it back the way it was!

20 minute power walks 5x a week, walk a 5k 4x a week, HIIT 3x, and you’re eating 1300ish cals, that’s why you have no energy. Also, 53g of protein is petrifying. Do you have any muscle on your body? Because losing it all, aside from screwing up your metabolism, it’ll also make you look fatter than you are at the same BF%. You need muscle under there. I seriously wouldn’t get under 100g of protein in, you need to protect muscle at all costs and you need strong bones. For me, I can’t lose bodyfat with my fat intake much above 80g, also something you may want to play with.

You and the rest of the human race, that’s just how it goes.