I am seriously struggling on keto. I have only been doing it for 14 days and have been in ketosis the entire time(according to urine test strips). I have also been exercising 3 times a week and successfully doing intermittent fasting. My two daily meals consist of a protein, lots of healthy fats, and a keto friendly veg. My problem is that I am consistently gaining weight. 4lbs to be exact. I am trying to take the advice to stay away from the scales but honestly I need some reassurance that I am not doing this for nothing and that there is hope for me to also enjoy the benefits of weight loss.
Forget the scale for now.
How are your clothes fitting?
How is your energy?
Muscle weighs more than fat, is it possible you have been building muscle?
If you post your actual meals were can help you see if there is anything that could be adjusted
It would also help to have height, weight, and gender
@Blondzen I am going to take a guess that you are a woman around the wrong time of the month. If I’m right, have patience! And if I’m wrong, have patience anyway!
It can take people, especially women, a while to get started on fat loss when they adopt a ketogenic diet. The female hormones have a strong effect on women’s fat-loss pattern, not to mention the fact that sometimes people put on muscle and gain bone density when they first go keto, which can mess with their scale. (Remember, you want to lose fat, not just random weight. Losing muscle and/or making your bones brittler is not what we are after here.) Also, the last ten to fifteen pounds of fat always take much longer to lose.
The key to a ketogenic diet is controlling carbohydrate intake. You want it low enough to prevent damaging glycation from hyperglycaemia, not to mention other damaging effects from the resulting hyperinsulinaemia. Then, you want to be eating enough protein and fat to provide sufficient energy to your body to keep it out of “famine” mode. In famine mode, the body cuts energy expenditures and hoards body fat, so giving it enough calories is crucial for weight loss.
After a few weeks of eating ketogenically and getting enough calories, most people find that their leptin signaling begins working again, so that their appetite becomes a reliable guide to how much food to eat. As insulin levels drop, the brain starts receiving the leptin signal from the fat tissue again, and cuts appetite. We stop being hungry all the time, and can use our hunger as a reliable guide. So eat when hungry, stop when no longer hungry, and don’t eat again until hungry again. At first, this may seem to involve too much food, but that will change once your brain starts listening to leptin again. A few people with broken hormones may have to manually calculate how much to eat, but most of us do not (a good thing, too, since our ancestors knew nothing about calories and had no way to calculate macros—all they had to guide them was hunger and thirst).
Appetite is fully suppressed, rarely do I get hungry and seem to feel full quicker when eating a meal. My exercise is primarily Zumba. Honestly my clothes don’t feel any different and my energy is good, for the most part. I know I need to let go of the scale but I am working so hard and see my friends with results and my scale climbing. Right now the scale is my only source of feeling successful and it’s doing the opposite. I am 48, weigh 210 at 5’8. I have researched keto extensively and use keto friendly recipes for most meals. I have not “cheated” or strayed at all. I am so deflated but used as to run for a bag of chips at this point in my old ways of yo-yo dieting. So that is something I am proud of.
Yes tracking is something I have always struggled with. I just want to eat healthy foods and not have to track everything. Thank you for you kind supportive words. I will take them to heart.
Do you think my suppressed appetite is a good indicator that I am eating enough fat and protein? Sorry for all the questions, I have actually never opened up publicly about my struggles with weight loss and in fact have never spoken openly in a public forum of any kind. I am determined keto will be different than anything I have done before. I have always focused a great deal of energy around my health yet weight and body struggles have always been kept private. Maybe talking about it will help me make the change to a permanent lifestyle and not just another diet. I do see myself eating this way for a very long time, if not the rest of my life.
It’s not an easy call to make. Some people on these forums have started a such a low caloric intake that they actively had to work at increasing their calorie count in the beginning, so as to build up their appetite. Most of the posts I’ve read by these people seem to indicate that eventually their appetite picked up and they started to see better results.
You could test this on yourself by aiming for 2000 cal/day for a few weeks, and seeing what happens. Don’t eat past the point where you truly feel nauseated or want to gag—seriously!—but try pushing your limit a bit. My experience was that I was constantly hungry on a high-carb diet (naturally—all my energy intake was being stuffed into my fat cells), and I could stuff my belly to the point where my stomach was literally in danger of bursting and still be hungry for more. On keto, my appetite suddenly vanishes at a point I estimate as being when my stomach is about half full—there is plenty of room for more food, but I am done eating.
At first that felt really weird, but now I like it. Unlike a lot of people, I have a hard time restricting my caloric intake (mostly for psychological reasons), so for me, keto, where I can eat to satiety without counting calories, is an ideal way to eat.
It sounds as though you are at the other end of the spectrum from me, so your experience will almost certainly be different. But as above, you can give it a try, being gentle with yourself in the process, and see how your body responds. Above all, listen to your body. We tend not to do that in Western culture—to our detriment, I firmly believe.
And 14 days usually isn’t enough time to feel the effects of low carb. I started low carb multiple times, and each time, maybe a month or so into it, I would realize I was not hungry. That was unusual, as I was always hungry. But that takes a while of being on the diet.
Now, I did not keep on low carb, as I thought I needed carbs for exercise (cycling at the time). It wasn’t until later when I finally went to low carb for good.
But 14 days is not a long time to make a decision about anything. When I tried resistant starch and probiotics, I gave them over 5 months before I quit. Give it a few months and see what happens.
I’ve been low carb/keto for 5.5 years and have never tracked anything, ever. (Except when I wanted to see if protein affected my blood sugar – it did not – and that was only for each meal I tracked.) Just keep carbs low, eat real food (meats, cheeses), and see what happens.
Thanks for taking the time to share and support me. I am sticking with it, I’ll keep you posted!
Welcome to the forum Blondzen!
Slow and steady wins the race, Keto is awesome, it really is, but your body has to adjust, just give it time and be patient, and you will see results =).
Welcome to the forum Blondzen. My experience has been different than yours, but that won’t stop me from supporting you virtually! As others have said, stick with it and give it a good long trial, and I believe you will see the benefits. The science is there, and if you persevere I am sure you will like the results!
Without more details about exactly what you’re eating and specific quantities, it’s hard to tell what might not be working. I’m just a couple of years older than you and about the same height and weight. If I ate 2000 calories/day every day, I would not lose weight. Your metabolism might be different than mine. In fact it probably is. But if you don’t have some more detailed information to work with, it’s going to be hard to know what to change and whether than change worked.
I would suggest that you get serious for a couple of weeks with weighing, measuring, and tracking everything you eat. This will give you a good sense of where you stand, if you’re eating more carbs than you think, etc. You don’t necessarily have to track like this forever, but people often think they’re eating fewer carbs than they are. Also, the “cut carbs and don’t worry about the rest” approach really doesn’t work for a lot of people. You ultimately need to be in an energy deficit to lose weight. If you’re eating so much that you are not, then your body isn’t going to burn your energy stores.