You are correct about not giving it time. I saw the scale increase and began to freak out. I would have accepted a small decrease in weight but an increase was not something I was prepared for (at least in the beginning). Research told me that being over 40 would definitely slow weight loss along with too much protein. I discovered I was low on fat, which is still a struggle for me. I do feel that this month of 1100 calories has stressed my body but I think if I can figure out the low fat issue, that could be changed.
I am 61 so no spring chicken and NEVER tracked my protein nor cared. Just carbs. And increased fats, which terrified me at first with decades of “programming” that fats make you fat. Well, it didn’t for me and makes all my meals scrumptious and satisfying. No hunger between meals.
SAD diet? Hungry every 2 hours and snacking (but low fat!!!) constantly.
Having too low a protein intake can cause water retention for some people. So have more protein if you want to. It won’t kill you and while it may stall weight loss, it will improve fat loss.
1000 kilocalories isn’t enough for anyone, except for a 3’1" dwarf adult. I easily crunch through 2600 to maintain my borderline-obese physique being standing but otherwise sedentary.
Do you think you are willing to accept potentially gaining weight for a month in exchange for not being hungry, cold or weak? That mentality may help you lean into fat and protein more.
Keep your carbohydrate intake below the recommended limit of 20 g/day, eat a reasonable amount of protein, and fill in calories with fat until satiation. Very few people listen, because the dietary advice of the last 40 years has taken deep root in our minds, but here’s the point of keto: you don’t need to worry about how many calories you are taking in, if you are eating a low-insulin diet. The reason is that insulin is the fat-storage hormone and carbohydrate is what really drives your insulin secretion up. So a low-carbohydrate diet helps insulin levels drop and allows excess stored fat to leave your fat cells to be burnt.
And since fat is the food that stimulates insulin almost not at all, it is the safest source of the calories you need. Most people need 2,000-2,500 calories a day. On a well-formulated ketogenic diet, on which you eat to satiety, you are likely to find yourself no longer hungry and find your appetitite automatically limiting your eating to around 1,000-1,500 calories. And where do the remaing 1,000 calories come from? Why, your fat store, of course, since you are no longer keeping your insulin at a level that prevents the fat from escaping.
The best part of all this is that there is no need to count calories, because the body does it automatically. Just eat when hungry and stop eating when you’re no longer hungry. And don’t eat again until you are truly hungry again.
I was someone who failed miserably with a low calorie restricted version of keto back in the day. I stopped any progress because I snuffed out my metabolism and took months of increasing calories by 100s a week to reboot it. Now, I am 5’4" down from 290 to 165. Hit that weight around Nov 2019 and been maintaining between a 3 pound window. Know what kicked the loss into gear? Dr. Fung’s explanation of incorporating intermittent fasting and help me see how my body needed distinctions between fasting and FEASTING so my metabolism pilot light stayed lit. When I do eat, I found keeping it to a 4 to 6 hour window with keto focused foods jumped me back into fat burning mode. I don’t want to lose just weight. I want to preserve my bone density and muscle mass. I needed to burn excess fat. Managing insulin and cortisol through fasting and keto was what worked for me. And now, I eat upwards to and between 2000 and 2500 calories when I do eat. What it comprises of is very important. I could probably lose these last stubborn 20 pounds if I gave up more of my veggies but I feel better for eating them.
I encourage you to become an experimenter with your food. It is merely fuel for this biomechanical cages that we lug around all day You will find what works for your body eventually. Patience is the other key here after all! Becoming healthy was my WHY. Fat loss was a happy secondary benefit as healing occurred. I am no longer pre-diabetic with my A1C dropping from 6.1 to now 5.1. I have been doing this approach since June/July 2018.
Best of luck!
2500 for a not very active short woman must be super rare, many are way below 2000. And while keto helps for many to get satiated with a small amount (smaller then the energy need), it’s not true for everyone. Or not true when they are already not very fat. It’s not always easy to find the woe that actually works for us… Keto is clearly not enough for many of us, we need some extra rules.
(Eating only when hungry is a totally impossible thing for some of us too but the OP surely can do it. Not like one can’t eat too much with this rule if the diet isn’t quite right for the one in question. I actually try to avoid anything more than borderline hunger in order to have a small enough meal every time. Each to their own, I guess. But on my ideal woe everything works, even waiting until hunger. On my old keto it didn’t work but I had too much carbs there due to my vegetables.)
That’s why it’s hard, we are just too different. People think it’s easy as it was easy and logical for them but the same method fails for others and we need to experiment for a long time sometimes and it’s still a problem if the right method is something we aren’t willing/able to do for long…
It would absolutely be more reassuring to hear stories of how it didn’t work and what was done to make it fit. For me, I just tracked everything and graphed it looking for any correlation. (I know correlation does not equal causation. I have had that drilled into my head by every science professor ever). I found very little trend for net carb variation ( variation was really too small) however the exact opposite of what I was expecting for overall carbs. As I increased carbs there was a decrease of weight. However, this could possibly be explained by the obvious trend with regards to fiber. Almost every time I have a daily input of 20 g of fiber, there was a decrease (or not an increase in weight). As opposed to an intake of less than 20 led to an increase (or stall). It was even a more pronounced trend than my net calorie graph/trend. Unfortunately, I stopped tracking this meticulously after a visit to the dr. So I really need to go back and see if that holds true. (Before anyone challenges sample size of only 2 months of data, I realize it is small, but I was really just trying to get a grasp of what was happening with my body)
I would enjoy reading more about this if you have research pointing me in the right direction. I used the diet doctor website (and a few others mimicking the same info) to discover the over 40, too much protein issue. But, a vague “too much” does not really point to a number. My graphs tell me anything over 100 g is too much but my chronometer I think is at 60 g. I will have to check that again.
@Pbash, I think you may still be overthinking this!
I listen to my body and don’t try to count anything. Calorie counting got me into this mess and eating very low carb got me out again. Rely on your appetite not your calculator. I am pretty much carnivore these days because that suits me best, but one of the biggest benefits for someone hung up on counting macros would be that such activity would be redundant. Could you try carnivore?
Chronometer can’t have much idea about your ideal protein intake as it has a significant personal factor just like almost everything related to our woe… Many of us just try out various numbers and we see what works. It’s still not easy, I was sure for almost a decade that I need significantly higher than adequate protein to get satiated. It turned out certain types of fat satiate me well too. There are so many factors but slowly we can research various keto styles.
I see you are interested in that a lot too! I even found pretty well working formulas, well, one but it shows a lot. Not everyone has it this simple, sometimes tiny changes mess up things too… But sometimes we find something useful.
Maybe your fat-loss is big and reliable enough to draw such conclusions, I can’t do that as my weight is basically always the same, no matter how I eat (except water weight), I saw strong correlation between my net carb intake and calorie intake and I already know that it matters most regarding my weight-loss so it’s basically the same without using scales, that’s not reliable enough for many of us. It seems fiber helps you, it still doesn’t mean you need to eat vegetables but if it works, good for you.
Keep your fiber, eat a bit more and play with fat and protein macros, at least I would do that.
But if this research stresses you out, stop it. It’s the same with weighing yourself. These aren’t for everyone, well it matters how stressful they are and how long they last… I always tried to figure out facts about my body and find a great woe that works for cutting, maintenance and bulking too. It’s not only about losing fat, after all.
I actually enjoy the research. I quit my job last fall to homeschool my youngest. As a result, my brain feels a bit underwhelmed from the 3rd grade material. I will also use this as an excuse for any typos and grammar issues! There is very little interaction with adults on a given day. I am sure many people can relate to that now with so many people under stay at home orders.
Food is to be enjoyed it doesn’t sound like you are enjoying it at all, keto meals are delicious, I made a lovely chicken pie yesterday in 30 mins which was low carb and I’m having the leftovers today,yum
l have been doing Keto/LCH and IF now for almost 10 years. My best friend is an MD and a high performance sport coach. My experience is as follows:
Men and women are different.
Have a DEXA Scan day 1. This is your most accurate measurement of body composition. I did this every 3 months for the first years. I now have a DEXA scan once a year.
Complete blood work before beginning. Continue to have a new blood test every 4-6 months. Not everyone’s blood markers improve with this type of diet.
Measure ketones levels with blood only. Urine test strips gave too many false readings.
People with blood type O (40% of NA population) seem to have an easier time getting into Ketosis.
First 3 months nothing white or can be white go into your mouth.
Drink 1 1/2 -2 litres of water per day. A lot less at nighttime.
Adequate amounts of protein. The US RDA for protein is 0.8gram of protein per kilo of body weight. I use 1:1 or greater as my level of activity increases. 70kg equals 70 grams of protein.
Realize this is NOT a starvation diet. If I felt hungry I would increase my fat intake. In 10 years this rarely happens.
I have plateaued a few times. For me true IF worked.
I never counted calories. That to me is old school thinking. “Calories in vs calories out.” Every time you reduce your calories in you do create a deficit and should loose weight initially. Than your bodies metabolism adjusts to the reduced supply and you plateau. I Measured my protein intake for the first 4 weeks. Increased my fat intake 3x.
A true Keto diet is not a calorie reduction. Rather it is getting the majority of your calories from FAT. Most people do a modified Keto. They eat low carb with some fat. This keeps them satiated and thus will not eat as much food. They have created a deficit and will loose weight. They will plateau though. IF can help up regulate you metabolism.
DEXA scans, blood work and ketone test strips are expensive and not everyone can fit them into their budget.
Nice-to-know Information but not necessary to eat a keto diet.
What is the purpose of the bloodwork so often? If your markers get worse what would you do differently with this information?
On average, women typically need around 2000 calories, men around 2500. This is not to deny the existence of individual variation.
But my point was that eating a well-formulated ketogenic diet to satiety eliminates the need to count calories at all, because the appetite hormones (particularly ghrelin and leptin) start functioning properly again (once insulin drops to a healthier level) and appetite thus returns to being a good guide as to how much to eat.
The problem with a high-carbohydrate diet is that insulin causes excess glucose to be turned into fatty acids and stored in the adipose tissue (and elsewhere, once the adipose fills up). It prevents the fatty acids from leaving the tissues to be metabolised (this is what we want, when fattening up for the winter) and interferes with the reception of leptin (which the adipose cells secrete once they are full), which keeps the brain from realising that we have enough stored energy to be able to quit eating for a while. This is why people on the standard American diet tend to feel hungry all the time (in the old days, I would eat half a pound of pasta, to the point where my stomach was literally at the bursting point, and still want more). Once your ketogenic diet lowers your chronic insulin level to something healthier, the insulin stops blocking the leptin receptors in the hypothalamus, and we regain the ability to feel satiated.
There are documented cases of people eating a low-carb, high-fat diet to satiety, where satiety for them was 3000 calories a day or more, and these people nevertheless lost weight at the same rate as the other study subjects. The British nutrition activist Sam Feltham ate a 5000-calorie-a-day LCHF diet for 28 days, and his overall weight never changed, though he did gain a bit of muscle and lose a bit of fat. (He was already lean, because he had been eating a normal ketogenic diet for quite some time, at that point.)
The persons original post stated she was a numbers Person. Some people when doing a Keto diet
might see their main blood marker for inflammation (CRP) rise. This is a red flag. Or say your LDL number rises on Keto. Could be just the extra 35% cream. My initial introduction to Keto was to lose weight. Not all people can do Keto. Some people like myself found it really easy. Others find it impossible. By looking at the numbers you get to pivot if something is not working. The DEXA scan gives you baseline. Using a home scale is not very accurate. Water weight, muscle weight and fat weight are important measures. I knew exactly how much fat I had lost.
I did have a scan but I am not sure what it was called. It has a trademark that says body comp scale and appears to be sold through Valhalla scientific. I have also had a bone density scan done in the past but I don’t think that is what you mean by dexa scan.
A bone density scan is a DEXA scan but it just focuses on bone density when a doctor orders it. There’s also a full body DEXA scan that’s used by body builders to get a breakdown of fat, muscle, and bone percentages. That’s what people here generally refer to unless it’s about osteoporosis.
I’ve heard about this miracle 3-4-5000 kcal fat-loss cases but I know quite a few people who don’t have this magic. We don’t lose fat eating 2000 kcal and it’s very little food, I find it very hard to eat less even on keto (okay, it’s doable on carnivore but I better be careful). Many of us wrote in this forum too that we easily overeat using certain very low-carb food items. Finding the best style is great but sometimes takes a very long time and it’s not necessarily enough.
A short woman with little activity and without very much to lose very often need way less than 2000 kcals a day. I don’t know the average but if calculators use statistics (I guess so), the average is significantly lower for that group. The average women is surely taller, heavier, more muscular, more active and needs more, I didn’t talk about that. And some short women has a huge energy need, of course, there are many factors but I usually see frighteningly small numbers (not on keto forums but I can’t imagine it has a big effect even if it seemingly has some for many people, I can even understand it, our body works differently, after all and it’s very complex) and I am very glad my metabolism is a bit quick. Still, 2000 kcal is too much for me to lose without proper exercise, no matter the diet, it seems. It’s totally logical to me, my body won’t throw away precious reserves without a reason.
I’ve read such things million times already and all my experiences says something totally different and it’s not just me. Keto helps a lot but some of us won’t automatically lose fat, it’s not that simple for everyone. I know too many trusted cases to think that.
I don’t care about special butterflies, not even the average ones, I care about myself and the people I like and who just don’t lose fat on keto automatically, possibly not when being very strict. There are various people, I can imagine almost everything except defying nature laws.
And not gaining fat is another thing entirely and one person doesn’t count. I could eat 3000 kcal without gaining significant weight in a year, even off keto all the time (for my current weight, at least), it’s easy. Losing is hard. For me. We are all different.
And there is the part that not everyone can eat only when hungry and until satiation - but the satiation feeling can be tricky anyway. Keto alone isn’t enough for all of us. Tracking may help, it doesn’t mean we should force things and not satiating ourselves. It’s just a guide, to figure out how to eat the proper amount of food to reach all our goals. At least for me. The right diet is the key but keto is too general and not always enough.
I felt quite satiated on high-carb too, isn’t it perfectly normal? I never personally knew anyone who was hungry after eating enough of a carby meal (containing other macronutrients as a proper meal should, at least). People eat when they are hungry, usually… I never understood this, how people can’t get satiated on some common diet? It sounds awful and strange. Getting hungry soon again, I get that. Harder time to get satiated, yep, I probably has it worse than most people as carbs make me hungry and my satiation is demanding on every diet. Overeating? Many of us do that on the wrong diet (and possibly on the right one too). But being hungry a lot… It’s odd to me as I never saw that and I can’t even imagine how it is like. If something doesn’t work (like the pasta. I can relate, I stayed hungry after eating a pound of bread with honey and butter myself. I tried it a few times. but so many people get satiated with a buttered bread slice! we people are soooo different), why not to try something else, possibly more satiating food? It’s not hard to learn some basic facts about our satiation. Is it because I am a hedonist (with a big enough stomach capacity)? Of course I won’t stay hungry if I have access to a variety of food… Not a single time.