Simple Rules of Ketogenic Diet
Importance of rules on a keto diet
The importance of rules on a keto diet can be understood from the fact that every diet restricts you from few things and pushes you towards other things in one way or the other. If you are not aware of the things you need to avoid and consume, you may not either get the body shape you want to. Likewise, the keto diet is not a random diet , it comes with some thumb rules. One amazing fact related to the keto diet is that unlike other diets, it restricts you from few things only and lets you eat all other things.
What are the main rules of a keto diet
Let us take an overview of the most important yet the most simple rules of a keto diet that should be on your fingertips if you want to follow a keto diet. Keep one thing in mind that you need to put these rules to practice as well.
- Low consumption of carbohydrates
- Eat lots of healthy and right kind of fats
- Increased intake of proteins
- Consuming vegetables that have zero starch
- Stay hydrated
- Adequate intake of salt
- Replenish your electrolytes
- Eat enough dietary fiber
- Adding workout to a keto diet
- Fix your eating pattern
- Do not have cheat meals
- Never give up
1. Low consumption of carbohydrates
The keto diet is all about regulating your carb intake. It revolves around eating food that is low in carbs . The most important rule, therefore, is to watch your carb intake in any form. The underlying purpose is to put your body in a state of ketosis so that instead of getting energy from carbohydrates it starts burning fats for getting energy. This can only be done by lowering the intake of carbohydrates. If there are no carbohydrates present in the body for use, the body will automatically have to shift towards burning fats for the sake of getting calories. Your net consumption of carbohydrates in one day must stay between 20 grams to 30 grams only and should not exceed the 30 gram limit.
2. Eat lots of healthy and right kind of fats
Eating lots and lots of fats is one of the general rules of a keto diet and a key to make your keto diet a complete success. When your body is in a state of transition and trying to achieve ketosis, lots of fats are needed. It is because of the fact that sugars are not available from where the body could get energy therefore it searches for an alternative that has to be fats. That is why you need to provide healthy fats to the body so it starts burning down fats for meeting its energy consumption. Later on, you might cut down fat intake a little bit but initially, you have to supply the body as many fats as it needs. Around 70 to 80% of daily calories must come from fats.
3. Increased intake of proteins
One most common mistake newbies make is they ignore proteins in their diet and make a keto diet all about carbohydrates and fats. This is not right. Proteins are as important as fats ad carbs. 15% to 20% of daily calories should come from proteins. Eat the right amount of protein that is required to protect and build your muscle mass. Proteins support ketosis but one thing most people do not know is that eating excessive proteins will convert them into glucose and that we do not want. So keep your protein intake on moderate lines.
4. Consuming vegetables that have zero starch
Non-starchy foods play a vital role in supporting your keto diet and in helping your body to maintain ketosis. These are packed with just the right amount of nutrients that form the main part of a keto diet. Vegetables such as asparagus, broccoli, and spinach are the perfect sources as they provide you the vitamins you need on a keto diet along with other nutrients. Another important fact is that non-starchy vegetables give you the feeling of fullness so you do not get hungry again and again.
5. Stay hydrated
Drinking lots of water is among the basic rules of a keto diet and a hack to a successful keto diet. It is a common understanding that a keto diet makes you shed quite some water. Lots of important electrolytes are also depleted. Chances are that you will lose water after a while you have drunk it. Therefore it has to be replenished. Drinking enough water shall also keep your electrolytes in check and will ensure smooth keto routine.
6. Adequate intake of salt
Increased intake of salt is yet another rule of a healthy and successful keto diet. As you might cut on processed food and processed drinks because they contain an insanely large amount of sugars, so the chances are that shifting to home cooked food might alter your salt levels. Naturally cooked food does not have enough that you are used to off in the form of processed food. Therefore, make sure you consume an adequate amount of salt because of low levels of sodium cause keto flu and other stomach related issues. In addition to this salt also provides essential electrolytes.
7. Replenish your electrolytes
In addition to the above mentioned rules, replenishing electrolytes (minerals in a bodily fluid that carry charge) is another mandatory thing. They are shed off along with water. People take this thing for granted but they do not know that low levels of electrolytes are the reason behind nausea, unstable blood pressure, heart palpitations, constipation, fatigue, and trouble sleeping. All these health conflicts can seriously affect ketosis in a bad way. Therefore, electrolytes are as important as any other rule of a keto diet. Electrolytes can be taken either through food, salt, water, or supplements.
8. Eat enough dietary fiber
Another important rule to be followed on a keto diet is to consume a sufficient quantity of dietary fibers. People usually underrate the significance of dietary fibers and take it for granted. However, the reality is that eating enough dietary fiber is a prerequisite of a successful keto diet. In the absence of enough carbs, it regulates the sugar levels of the blood and also brings stability in blood pressure. In addition to this, it induces a feeling of fullness so you may not eat abnormally and hence accelerates weight loss.
9. Adding workout to a keto diet
This is not a strict rule that you have to follow at all cost. However, this is an additional hack that, if followed, shall accelerate your weight loss game. It does not have to be a heavy and hectic workout rather you can just choose light exercises that you could easily perform at home anytime you want to. It could only be a morning walk, some push ups etc. The underlying purpose is to keep your body active. Workout combined with a keto diet gives amazingly sharp results within a short span of time.
10. Fix your eating pattern
One of the success factors of a keto diet is to regulate your eating habits. Do not eat all day because abnormal eating patterns could disrupt ketosis. Eat only when you feel hungry. In addition to this eat till you are satisfied and not till you are full till mouth. The point is to fix your eating patterns so that you may know how to control hunger pangs and cravings which are pretty common in a keto diet
11. Do not have cheat meals
Now, this is what people need to focus on the most because this is where everything goes wrong even when they have followed all the basic rules of a keto diet. What happens is that people religiously follow their diet plan, cut on carbs, eat a lot of fats, stay hydrated but then they have cheat meals and their hard work goes down the drain. Cheat meals could be anything that you consume that you should not for example meals highly rich in carbohydrates. Having a cheat meal once in a blue moon might not affect ketosis too much but having it off and on will surely take you out of ketosis and you will not lose an iota of weight.
12. Never give up
This rule has more to do with your will power to lose weight and your stamina to follow all the above mentioned rules. If you are a lover of carb enriched food, the keto journey might not be an easy one for you. In fact, it could be challenging for anyone out there. You might become fed up with following the same diet routine, or you might want to put it on pause for a day or so. Worse is you might just give up in the middle of the keto diet and stop following it anymore. DO NOT let any negative thoughts hit you and even if they do, don’t let them settle in your head. Follow the keto diet till you get your desired results because once you have lost weight and acquired the body shape you had craved for, you will realize that all the struggle, hard work, and patience was worth it.
Zaineb Fatima holds a BSc (Hons) degree in Food and Nutrition, and is dedicated to helping others maintain a healthy weight through the use of good supplements. In addition to consuming these supplements herself, she also shares her knowledge about their usage with others. Zaineb is also an expert on a range of health topics, and is happy to share her opinions and insights on matters related to food, health, and nutrition.