If you’re on a ketogenic diet but aren’t getting the results you expected, you need to listen to this episode because I’m going to outline 3 signs that it’s time to stop following the keto diet.
Sign #1- It’s time to stop keto when you’re not losing weight or you’re gaining weight on a keto diet
Now this one is obvious, but if you’re anything like me, you’re stubborn and you will keep going on a diet just because you got results in the past or you see other people getting results.
However, if you have given keto a fair shot, meaning you have followed the diet properly for at least 4 weeks, without any cheats and you haven’t lost any pounds, inches, or body fat, or if you gained weight on keto, it’s a sign that it’s time to stop keto and it’s not the right fit for you.
Why do some women gain weight on keto?
There are many reasons why some women gain weight on keto including their genetics, not following the diet correctly, eating the wrong foods, not actually getting into ketosis, having too much stress, or other medical conditions that make it hard to lose weight no matter what diet you are on such as Hypothyroidism, PCOS and diabetes.
If you have been consuming whole, real foods, focusing on high-quality protein, non-starchy veggies, healthy fats, and low-sugar fruits, and aren’t losing weight with keto, it’s time to stop keto and move on.
Sign #2 It’s time to stop keto- You keep cheating on keto
If the word “cheating” triggers you, sorry not sorry. Whatever you choose to call it if you can’t stick to keto consistently that to me is a huge red flag that it’s probably not the right diet for you and a sign that it’s time to stop the keto diet.
There are a few different reasons why you might be struggling with sticking to keto:
- You’re coming straight from a SAD diet. If this is you, your body is so metabolically inflexible that you’re cravings for carbs and sugar are too intense for you to resist.
The solution? What I tell my clients to join my Holistic Clean Keto Program is to start with something less restrictive than keto, if they’ve never tried being low-carb.
Here is what a progression to keto would like like if I was coaching one of my clients:
- What seems doable to you now?
- Giving up processed and refined carbs and sugar
- Going sugar and gluten-free
- Working up to a Paleo WOE
- Switching to low-carb (50-75g of CHO)
- Transitioning to keto
That way, you are not shocking your body, you’re slowly learning how to manage your BS and it will be easier for you to stick with keto once your body becomes more metabolically flexible.
- The second reason you can’t stick with keto is that you have mental blocks and habits that are holding you back
- Mental blocks are things such as an all-or-nothing mentality, self-sabotage, restrict-binge cycles, or emotional eating. Unless you address all of these things, it will be hard for you to be consistent with any way of eating.
Sign #3- It’s time to stop keto when you have adrenal dysfunction or low thyroid
What is adrenal dysfunction?
Adrenal dysfunction, also known as adrenal fatigue or HPA Axis dysregulation is when your adrenal glands have been overworked so hard that they can no longer secret the proper levels of cortisol.
Your body either produces too much cortisol from chronic stress or illness or too little cortisol which can lead to Addison’s disease.
Although “adrenal fatigue” isn’t a recognized medical diagnosis, it is a thing and it’s used to describe a group of symptoms that can’t be explained by anything else.
I am personally going through this myself which is why I had to stop doing keto after 6 years of being strict keto.
Why is keto harmful for adrenal dysfunction?
With adrenal dysfunction, your body is already stressed and your cortisol rhythm is out of balance, which means it might be too high when it should be low and too low when it should be high.
Since the keto diet is a stressor on the body, it can make your symptoms worse, increase your cortisol even more and cause weight gain, especially around the belly area because that is where cortisol receptors like to hang out.
How do cycling carbs help your adrenal glands heal?
Clinical studies have shown that adrenal dysfunction can be improved with a carb-cycling strategy which is exactly what I teach in my carb-cycling program, The CKCC Blueprint in the Adrenals & Stress Protocol.
Cycling carbs can help return your cortisol rhythm back to normal by altering the number of carbs eaten throughout the day.
When your blood sugar is up, cortisol goes down so it would make sense for you to eat (more) carbs to help decrease your cortisol levels and heal your adrenals.
With a keto diet, your blood sugar is usually low which increases cortisol levels.
If you want to learn more about how to cycle carbs for your adrenal glands, get on the waitlist for my carb cycling program HERE.
Last but not least, I want to quickly mention your thyroid. I did talk about the thyroid and why keto long-term is not good for your thyroid in episode 51 of the podcast, but here’s the gist of it:
Your thyroid regulates your metabolism and being in ketosis for too long or severe calorie restriction can reduce thyroid function and lead to hypothyroidism.
You need insulin for thyroid conversions to happen. Insulin helps T4 to T3 so if your insulin is too low for too long, the conversion won’t happen which will lead to low-thyroid-related symptoms and slow metabolism.
I’m not suggesting that you don’t do keto if you have thyroid issues, however, I’d recommend a more cyclical keto approach which I also cover in detail in my Carb Cycling Program.
In conclusion, I want to say that if any of these signs relate to you, it’s time to stop the keto diet and try cycling some carbs in instead.
I am hosting a free masterclass on this exact topic so if you want to learn how to do this, go to eatbefitexplore.com/morecarbs to reserve your spot!
I’ll see you there!
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