New to Keto? Here are the Top 7 Keto Mistakes to Avoid!
Keto mistakes to Avoid
When I first starting following Keto 3 years ago, it wasn’t as popular as it is today. There was not a lot of research and information about it. I made some mistakes that I wish someone told me not to make when I first started.
Here are the big ones:
Not getting enough electrolytes
Sodium, magnesium, and potassium are so vital when starting the Ketogenic diet.
When I first started, I had little knowledge about electrolytes and experienced the Keto-Flu every time re-started Keto after a cheat. I would get horrible headaches and felt tired and weak.
Once I started adding more salt to my food or water, taking magnesium and incorporating potassium via greens the headaches went away.
Most of the time when you feel bad on Keto it has to do with an Electrolyte deficiency. A few recommendations for electrolytes I use below:
Overeating Cheese and Nuts.
It’s hard. I know. I love cheese. Who doesn’t? (ok, lactose-intolerant people don’t). Cheese is fantastic and very keto-friendly. However, overeating will stall your weight loss and bloat you. Same goes with Nuts. They are healthy, yes, but it is effortless to eat too many.
I would sit there and eat handfuls of nuts at a time and eat cheese in every meal or make cheese plates all the time when I started. My weight loss stalled and I felt bloated again.
Once I cut down significantly, the weight started coming off, and the bloat went away. It was like magic!!
Not tracking my food- at least in the beginning.
Here is the bottom line, you will never know how many carbs you are eating unless you track everything. You may think that there are no carbs in a specific food but once you input it into something like My Fitness Pal and it says 10 grams of carbs per serving you may change your mind about eating it.
It’s easy to go over your carb content unless you track. Some people are rigorous in monitoring their macros; you will hear that term a lot. I think you should focus on keeping carbs under 30 grams when you first start.
It is quite overwhelming to meet your carb, protein and fat goal every single day when you are new to Keto. Once you get used to the diet if you want to speed things up you can track the rest.
You don’t have to track your food for the rest of your life if you chose the Ketogenic Lifestyle.
I would recommend monitoring for at least a few months until you get used to how many carbs are in certain foods and how many calories you are consuming.
Calories do and don’t matter on Keto. Confusing, I know. I’ll talk about that more in-depth later but for now, focus on the carbs.
Not measuring my Ketones.
This one goes hand in hand with tracking your food. You will not know for sure if you are following the Ketogenic Diet correctly unless you measure. That is just the cold hard truth.
Yes, there are other signs you can look out for, however, if you are new and have never experienced what it feels like to be in Ketosis how you are supposed to know?
I started out using the urine strips, and they are excellent in the beginning. Eventually, they stop working because your body stops releasing ketones into the urine. That is why you should invest in a meter.
I use a Keto Mojo, and you can get 15% off by clicking the link. (discount applied at checkout). Testing your blood is the only way to know if you are in Ketosis (any number above .5 is nutritional ketosis).
If you are serious about this diet, then it is worth the investment. The strips are not the cheapest, however, even if you measure once or twice a week it will be good enough, and you don’t have to spend that much.
Cheating and expecting Keto to work.
Weekends, holidays and events are always happening. I started pretty strict with Keto and then a few weeks later something would come up, and I would cheat.
Each time you cheat on keto, you immediately gain water weight. For me, the average is 5 lbs. It would set me back about a week and then I would follow Keto 3 more weeks and cheat again. You get the point.
Think of Keto like a marriage. You can't cheat on it and expect it to work. You commit and stick to it.
For me the only time cheating is worth it anymore is when I travel. Even then, after day 3 I feel so bloated and tired that I can't wait to go back to Keto.
Once you have experienced what is like being in Ketosis, you will not want to let go of that feeling. You will feel like death when you cheat and have a carb-hangover(yes, such thing exists) the next day.
There are many people, especially in the fitness world that carb cycle. I tried doing that, and it just doesn't work well for me. I get cravings, headaches and it sets me back with my weight significantly.
The only time I would consider carb cycling is if I was training for another marathon. Bottom line, if you are going to cheat, make sure you save it for something extraordinary and be ready to face the music.
- If you want some tips on how to get back into Ketosis quickly after cheating, check out this post, How to get back into Ketosis Fast after a Cheat Day
Not realizing that Keto Desserts are still desserts with fewer side effects.
Ah, my wicked sweet tooth. I've been struggling with a sugar addiction all my life. Keto has helped a lot. However, I fell into a bad habit of eating too many Keto treats.
Yes, Keto desserts are much better for you than the processed, high sugar high carb desserts, but they are still desserts.
I love making food so I would find myself baking a new Keto treat and binging on it. Also, sweeteners may trigger the brain that you are consuming sugar and can cause cravings.
That is what happened to me. Eating keto sweets made me crave more, and when I didn't have it, I started wanting non-Keto treats (uh-oh). Be careful with your intake of treats.
Being afraid to eat fat.
When it comes to top Keto mistakes to avoid, this was a big one for me because of my nutrition background. During my undergrad, I learned that fat is bad. Fat causes high cholesterol, heart disease, obesity, etc.
I was so afraid that if I ate more fat than I would get fat. While this is true on a SAD (Standard American Diet) which is high in fat and carbohydrates, keto works the opposite.
I started getting hungry because I wasn't eating enough fat.
This is the exact reason my past diets failed. I would get so hungry I would binge. Once I started eating more fat I was full for longer, my hunger went away, and my appetite decreased drastically.
If you are having a hard time getting enough fat in, you can try the following:
- Add Burn Butter to your morning coffee. These packets are filled with MCT oil and Avocado oil along with other clean ingredients that will not only make your coffee taste amazing but will keep you full for a long time.
- Try using MCT oil. I use the Perfect Keto brand, and you can get 15% off if you use code KETOFITMOMLIFE. I use it in my coffee, salad dressing or protein shake/smoothie.
- Fat Bombs- these are nifty little packets of flavored nut butter that are a quick and delicious way to increase fat intake.
- Keto Bars- not only do these bars taste amazing, they have 21g of healthy fat per bar.
I can probably write a book on the mistakes I made on Keto, but I will stop here. Learn from me and don't make them, but if you do, it's ok! Get up, wipe the dust off and get back on the Keto Train. It's a great train to be on!
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