Long term keto... Things keep changing

(LAURA) #1

Keto/LCHF since May 2019
SW: 265
CW: 129 to 133 (up and down)
Gw: 125

Been keto for almost 2 years and I know things change as you go along in this process. I’ve posted here before asking questions because things have been changing. I am struggling to find answers. I know everybody is different and everyone’s situation is different, but I’m just looking for a little encouragement and knowledge.

About six to 8 months ago things started changing. My ketone levels dropped (barley at .04 or. 05 now down from 2.0 or higher) my hunger increased and I stopped losing weight. I’d like to hit 125 but the scale won’t move. I’ve been 130ish for the last 6 months. I know I should just count my blessings and call it good.

No matter what I do, no matter how long I fast, my ketone levels will not increase. My weight won’t budge, even with a zero carb carnivore week. Lately, my blood sugars have jumped from the 80’s to 90-100’s (fasting) and I have no idea why. So, I have higher blood sugars (fasting), the scale hasn’t moved in 6 months, my hungry has increased, I’m assuming due to the higher blood sugars and lower ketones and I’m frustrated.

I’ve been doing OMAD for the last year but have been trying to shake things up and add in 2MAD so my body isn’t stuck in routine. Not helping.

Does the body just get to a point and it refuses to lose any more weight?

Will I ever get my ketone levels back up? I “feel” better when they are higher and I’m less hungry, it’s not about the “number” but how I feel when they are higher and how my hunger is controlled.

I’m so frustrated that the scale won’t move, I’m afraid to eat more than 1 meal a day or I’ll start gaining (I have a food addiction that I’m trying to manage) and I’m just frustrated that I can’t get my hungry under control.

Is there truly a “set point” and I should stop fighting the issue? Am I still receiving the benefits of ketosis when my numbers are so low, my blood sugars are higher and I don’t feel as good? I’m tired of feeling hungry all the damn time, even when eating fat. I did so well for so long and I feel out of control right now and I hate this.

Please be kind in your responses as I am really feeling low and struggling with this and I’m afraid emotionally I could easily back track because of how much I feel like I’m struggling.

Thank you!

(Marianne) #2

I hear you. For many of us, after being overweight for so many years and fighting tooth and nail to lose it, the prospect of gaining weight is terrifying. My advice: first, give yourself a huge pat on the back for what you’ve achieved and how long you’ve maintained this WOE; next, let go of the number on the scale. If you are within five lbs. of your goal, you must look pretty darn good. Is it possible that 125 is too thin for you? Can I ask how tall you are?

It sounds like maybe you aren’t eating enough. What did you do in the beginning? Did you eat more and follow macros without calorie counting? I know that several of the experts here will respond with a more scientific answer, which I always appreciate. They have done the research. From everything I have read, if you are fueling your bodily sufficiently and eating to satiety, your weight will remain stable.

Hugs and good luck.

(A fool and his bacon are soon parted) #3

Here are some considerations:

Some people find that they need to eat more, not less, in order to lose weight, even on a ketogenic diet. However, you are within four to eight pounds of your goal weight, so it’s not going to come off very fast, no matter what you do. You may already be at what your body considers to be its ideal weight. It is also possible that you are experiencing what we call “carb creep,” and a good look at what you are eating may show you that your carb intake has increased unbeknownst to you.

Dr. Phinney has said in several lectures that when people complain about being “stuck,” the first suggestion he makes is to cut carbohydrate intake. If that doesn’t work, he suggests eating more fat. If you are deliberately restricting yourself to a certain amount of calories, it is possible that your body has become convinced that there is a famine going on, and it is protecting you by hanging on to those last few pounds of fat. The cure for this is to eat to satisfy your hunger, so as to avoid eating too few calories.

Take a good look at the fit of your clothing. Sometimes people’s weight doesn’t change, even though they are losing fat, because they are adding muscle and strengthening their bones. Would you rather look as though you’ve lost those eight pounds and have the scale continue to show the same weight, or would you rather lose those eight pounds and continue to look the same?

(GINA ) #4

I have two thoughts… One, do you have any other symptoms that indicate something might be amiss with your thyroid, cortisol, nutrients, etc? Thyroid problems will make it almost impossible to lose weight no matter what you do and they often come on (or reveal themselves) after a period of weight loss. I don’t know if it can affect ketones though.

Two, do you have a sport or exercise you like? Not so much because exercise will help you lose, but so you can look for progress in other ways- a new distance completed, a faster mile, a heavier lift. It is easier to take no movement on the scale if you PR’d a 10K that week. If you are not currently exercising it could help with size/shape even if you never lose another pound.


Your ketone levels aren’t connected to your weight loss, stop wasting your time measuring them.

No, but in most cases what we’re doing (or not doing) is the issue.

Depending how long you’ve done that it’s pretty much a guarantee you’ve just slowed down your metabolic rate and that why you can’t loose now.

No, internet make believe.

Do you track your intake? People never know what they’re actually eating and without that you’re going blind with nothing to base decisions on.

(Tracy) #6

I’ve been Keto as long as you and my weight is at 128 and it seems like no matter what I do I can’t lose any more. I think 128 is my ideal weight whether I want it to be or not.

Congrats on losing that weight. I was 285 when I had gastric bypass. I know what it’s like to feel the fear of gaining it back. I know what it’s like to have a food addiction (most of the people here have been in the same boat). I’ll never forget the days I’d wake up and struggle with the decision to abuse food or not to abuse food. On the days I decided to abuse it, I knew I was about to indulge and eat junk for every meal, usually cake, and it was such a relief to know what I was about to do. On the days I didn’t abuse it I was mad and disappointed that I had to give up the thing that made me happy and I was going to suffer. You are doing just fine. Keep up the good work. You are in good company.

(Allie) #7

Stop obsessing over numbers, you’re tying yourself in knots and making things worse.

I know OMAD works for some people, but I’ve heard so many negatives associated with it that it’s not something I would ever advise as a regular thing due to the evidence that it causes metabolic slowdown over time. Some days I do it myself, but only here and there because that’s how whichever particular day happens to fit.

Fasting also doesn’t work for everyone. I’ve been there, done my share of five day fasts that ended up being a battle of will rather than listening to my body. I don’t do them now as I can see how badly they messed me up mentally and sent my body into a spin too.

Sounds to me that your body is hanging on to what it has now as it’s not getting enough fuel, combined with the stress you’re putting yourself under by obsessing over numbers that harm your progress. My advice, ditch the scale, get a simple tape measure and measure yourself once a month. Start resistance training of some sort to wake your body and muscles back up and get your metabolism back on track, forget OMAD completely and eat at least two meals every single day, and stop the fasting (eat time restricted if you want to, but no actual fasting), and ease up on yourself.

(Bob M) #8

There is at least one theory (the “personal fat threshold”) about set points:

What you’re asking is super complex and individual. For instance, I’ve been testing a high saturated fat diet. I just saw a statement in a paper where the PUFA content in your fat cells has a half-life of two YEARS. Consider this example, with a PUFA content of say 1,000grams:

Initially: 1000g
2 years: 500g
4 years: 250g
6 years: 125g
8 years: 62.5g
10 years: 31.25g

And basically, if we’re eating chicken and/or pork (both high PUFA in the US), we’re refreshing at least some of that. Add to that any avocados, oils of any type (which tend to be higher PUFA - even olive oil - than say beef), etc., and this means the PUFA content in our fat cells can take years, maybe decades to decrease.

Why is this important? Some believe PUFAs in fat cells cause us to overeat, whereas saturated fat causes us not to overeat.

And that’s only one factor.


Hi Laura. Well done on your body fat loss.

Please, may I ask what you are eating and drinking on your OMAD plan?

How much physical activity are you doing?

I reckon we can help you sort it out.

I’ll call in @Fangs as well because you mentioned (only) 1 week of keto-carnivore.

(Marianne) #10

Excellent info.; thank you. Going through something similar.

(Dee) #11

Here is a link that I found. I have been following this for a few years and it has worked for me. It is based on the fact that “we do have a set point weight”, but can get past it. This is what helped me.

(Tracy) #12

Laura have you increased your sweetener (artificial or natural like stevia) recently? I’m reading that even if our blood sugar doesn’t go up, sweeteners can cause insulin to go up, which will cause fat storage. I’m realizing that sweeteners cause me cravings. I have also correlated drinking diet soda with weight gain. Just something to think about.

(Jennibc) #13

It has been a very stressful year because of the worldwide pandemic. What you eat is not the only thing that affects insulin levels - stress does as well! Insulin affects blood sugar, I imagine it also could affect ketone levels but I don’t know that for sure.

I am kind of in the same boat. When I hit my goal weight of 150 back in October 2109, I set a new goal of 145 (I am 5’7.5 so that’s realistic). That said the lowest I’ve been able to get is 147.3 and then that was just for a day and I was back up. I sit around 149 going up or down a pound. I don’t know if it’s because my stress levels are high or not. I find my ketones are no longer as high as they used to be either. Yesterday was the first day in a long time when I felt ‘hungry’ and it made no sense because I am doing what I have been doing for close to almost three years now.

I’ve also recently brought back more fermented vegetables into my diet. I used to eat the regularly and then let that go. Developed some IBS symptoms following introducing erythritol last spring. Stopped that in October but still am trying to fix that issue. Had my fibromyalgia symptoms return in December which was really disappointing as I have been free of them since spring of 2016. That’s why I started the fermented veggie again because I am convinced fibromyalgia is related to the microbiome. I am hoping that getting that resolved will also help with dwindling ketones.

Metabolic health is tricky and complex. I hope you figure it out and good luck!

(Bob M) #14

I think that’s just what happens over time.

You can see my blood and breath ketones go down over time. The upper portion starts when I was low carb/keto about 2.5 years (started 1/1/14). My breath ketones (the only thing I take now) are even lower now: lower 20s unless I happen to eat a lot of fat.

I think it’s an indication of how well your body handles ketones, and it’s natural. The only way my ketones go up is via fasting multiple days, and by eating a lot of fat (which I think often means I’m overeating; not that I’m losing weight).


First. Congrats on the weight loss. You have shown you are highly disciplined and should be very proud of yourself. Having done keto on and off for over 10 years now, what you currently experience is normal. I would start transitioning away from Keto to LCH. Eat two to three meals a day. When I increased my carb intake from 20 to 80-100+grams, I lost 5lbs in less than three weeks. I have heard the there can be a bound back where the body will start to crave carbs. I have never experienced it, but know others who have. After my initial weight loss, I transitioned away from Keto to LCH. I occasionally cycling in and out of ketosis for specific reasons. I have also experimented with exogenous ketones to varying degrees of success. Gut health is very important too. Keto is not great for gut health. We tend to avoid carbs/starches and thus fibre. These things feed the good gut bacteria. I have come to believe that one should use Keto as a protocol short-term (8-12 months) to address certain issues, such as weight-loss. We do not know the long term effects of a high fat keto diet. Also, newer research has shown there is an accumulation of 4-HNE a molecule that shown to promote direct cancer onset. Short term this molecule is good.

(Jennibc) #16

My body seemingly is refusing to lose more weight. I set my first goal for 150 (which is a normal BMI for my height) met it after a 119 pound loss. Then changed my goal to 145. It’s been a year and a half and I cannot get there. the lowest I’ve gotten in 147.5, but then back up. So it seems my body really likes this 148 tp 152. That’s pretty much where I am - unless I eat a meal off plan and then I will jump above 152 and it takes a few days to get back again.

(Bob M) #17

That’s astounding! (Regardless of whether or not you can lose 5 more pounds.)

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #18

@Jennibc If you think of keto as a metabolic normalization process it makes sense. You have a ‘normal weight and body comp’. This may or may not correspond to your idea of what it should be. You can modify this - as many so-called ‘body builders’ do - with massive and perpetual intervention. Or, more sensibly you can accept it as what’s probably best for your overall health. Congratulations getting there from where you started. :+1:

(Hyperbole- best thing in the universe!) #19

BMI has my max weight at 145. That is the lowest I can maintain. And I look bad at anything under 130 even though my “healthy range” goes as low as 117. I haven’t been 117 since I was maybe 14? I think my best is at 140-145. But even that is hard to get to. I’m currently at 165 and kind of enjoying the curves. But not enjoying my kindergarten students telling me that my butt is big. :woman_shrugging:

What I’m saying is not to take “healthy ranges” too seriously. If you look and feel good to yourself and have no other negative healmarkers, then great!

(Karen) #20

Isn’t a big butt on trend these days :wink: