It’s kind of ironic how all our lives we’ve been brainwashed to be fearful of the word ‘fat’? How we have been in a bittersweet relationship with all the wonderful foods that we deemed too unhealthy and fatty to consume. Which we did consume after all and were guilty about it.

We all have those, believe me, the similar stories we share as we struggle towards trying to do right by our bodies and lose some in all the right places. The lifelong struggle has brought you to adopt the ketogenic diet plan. 

A literal opposite of what you’ve been taught all your life. Consumption of fat. Your body agrees to it. Your mind doesn’t accept it. It can be quite a situation. But what happens if you don’t eat enough fat on a keto diet? We’re here to break down all the science for you to help you ease into your new lifestyle.

How Metabolism Works

get-a-fast-metabolism-1296x728-feature

Typically, carbohydrates are your body’s favorite food to breakdown and utilize for energy which powers you throughout the day. In your regular everyday diets, the meals are a combination of carbohydrates, protein, and fats, etc.

The body uses carbohydrates and proteins more efficiently, but the fat? The fat is stored away for later use if ever needed. You keep eating, and the carbs and proteins keep getting used up while the fat keeps on piling up, rarely being used for energy.

A body’s ability or the pace to use up carbs and then start using stored fat for providing energy is called metabolism

Putting it in simpler words would be like saying if a person’s body requires more power to operate, it will utilize all the carbs it had so the body had to break down its stores of fat to provide the rest of the required energy too. This is usually the case with fast metabolism.

If only our metabolism could take a lesson or two from this. People with a slow metabolism tend to have the number of carbs enough for their energy requirements, thus keeping their fat stores intact. With time these ‘fat stores’ can overflow and start to look very apparent on us.

The Science of the Ketogenic Diet

It’s a low-carbohydrate and high-fat diet. The principle of the keto diet may sound similar to other low carb diets. But following the above-explained phenomenon, the sudden reduction in carbs intake forces your body to take an alternative route to keep the energy supply up and running. 

It begins breaking down all the stored fat and through a metabolic process called ketosis, starts making energy out of it. Ketosis occurs in all our bodies under normal conditions. That’s why it’s completely natural and healthy.

It will not cause any disruption of any of your body systems. Though yes, you might miss all your favorite sugary foods and be sad about it so buck up. The concept is to raise the intensity of the ketosis process to the point where this is the top metabolic process taking place in your body. 

In fact, this is great for the body. The ketosis occurs to the accumulated fat around your vital organs, allowing them to function more efficiently, cause a significant reduction in blood sugar and insulin levels. Ketones are the byproduct of ketosis that lets you identify a successful process.

How Do We Know It Works?

GettyImages-639710428-590507315f9b5810dcca6dcb

For starters, there’s the visual difference and a difference in weight. This occurs when you’re at least more than a few weeks in. 

For the initial stages, though, there are several products in the market like ketone testing strips or testing kits that allow you to monitor whether your body has entered the ketosis metabolic process yet or not.

Due to different conditions, fat levels, and metabolic rates, it can be hard for people on the keto diet to know for sure whether it has actually started affecting them or not. So to ensure adherence to plan and to let you know that the diet has begun working for you, this is a non-invasive method to find out.

Why Eat Fats in Keto?

young-woman-eating-grilled-steak-restaurant-neu5gc-ss

So now that we have a low carb diet, and the ketosis occurs, the question arises, why eat a high-fat diet at all? Won’t that just add more to the fat that I’m initially trying to get rid of? No. You see, the fat stored is usually converted into a slightly different form. The one you consume exists in a different one.

Now your body requires energy to digest the fat and proteins that you just ate but also it needs the energy to carry out the process of ketosis on the already existing fats in your body. The ketosis is simultaneous and corresponding.

What if I Don’t Meet My Fat Goals?

It’s actually important that you do. You do not have to meet the goal at a hardline level but do your absolute best to land somewhere near it. You’re eating your proteins and fats to a certain amount and its enough to keep you satiated. In principle, not eating more fat will lead to a more rapid fat loss. 

Is it advised, though? Not really. Why? Because slow and steady wins the race. You need to understand and respect the process. Starving yourself will not get you through months worth of process in a week. Consistently low-fat consumption can lead to problems. 

A basic problem of staying too hungry for long is that it keeps pestering you. Eating enough to stay near your fat goals will keep you safe from cravings and unnecessary hunger pangs, which can break your resolve to stick to the keto diet. Or any diet for that matter.

It will also put your body in a constant state of overload in order to provide energy. Consumed fat is easier to break down and utilize than stored fat. So if you don’t eat much fat, your body will have to put in extra effort to keep up to the energy deficit.

How Do I Meet My Fat Goals?

shutterstock_318286301

Meeting your fat goals will help you lose weight systematically, slowly and in a much more healthier way. Taking care of your fat goals will allow the keto diet to work without disrupting or affecting your metabolism or calorie-burning capacity. 

To keep your calories in check, it’s great to have a keto calculator app on your phone. You can set alarms and reminders on when to eat, what to eat, and keep a record of your keto journey. 

In case your taste palate just simply does not agree with adding fat, butter, and even oils to your regular foods, there are alternative methods to increase the fat content dramatically. 

MCT oil powder is an additive product that can be used to help achieve your daily fat goals. The effectiveness is, r however limited to the amount of carb intake. For instance, if your carb intake is 20g or less, MCT is effective, but if it is more than 20g, it won’t be much of a help.

Similarly, if your carb intake is 20g or less and you’re eating a lot of proteins along with the average amount of fats, MCT will help but with more carbs and too much protein, MCT may not be a great help unless you cut down proteins a  bit.

But What About Proteins?

protein

Proteins are great as a part of the diet. You can eat low-carb, medium-fat, and high protein diet, and that will keep the diet going but to be honest, defeats the purpose of keto.

In order to have your body efficiently carry out the process of ketosis as its number one metabolic process, you need to keep fat as the number one content of your diet.

Proteins can be a source of glucose through the process of gluconeogenesis, but it can cause disruptions in maintaining the ketosis process that we’re aiming for. Thus, to embrace the fact that 90% of your diet has to be fats is the only way to reach the point you and I believe we want to achieve through keto.

How Do I Manage Eating Fats All The Time?

Woman Eating Food. Beautiful Smiling Female Eating Delicious Grilled Meat With Fresh Organic Vegetables In Kitchen. Healthy Attractive Girl Dinning Having Beef Steak With Tomatoes And Salad. Nutrition

When fatty edibles were a forbidden thing, every fatty food placed in front of us seemed like a battle within for self-control (which some of us lost). Now that it’s encouraged, we can think of only so many fatty foods to devour. 

The great thing is that the internet is flooding with recipes and blogs with people and lifestyle gurus coming up with newer things to put on your plate and still have a party on your tastebuds.

If there’s a single solid way to go about following a keto diet, its to add fat in whatever you’re eating or drinking. That’s right. Try adding olive oil, avocado oil, butter, heavy cream, or high-fat nuts. Go all out on those full-fat dairy products. If you’re lactose intolerant, try alternatives. 

Oil is the way to go really. Add a couple of extra spoons of it to all those sauces, toppings, soups, dressings and gravies. You can even add cocoa butter to your bulletproof coffee, tea, smoothies, and milkshakes. It adds a chocolaty taste to them all.

Other questions

  • What products can I use to increase my fat consumption during keto?

  • What supplements or vitamins should I take during keto?

How Do I Manage Eating Low Carbs?

happy-woman-eating-salad (1)

It’s ideal to research first. Cross out anything that was was high-carb previously in your diet. Boycott it. Make a list of all the low carb foods that you have been eating before the diet. It’ll be easier for you to build on that. Then step by step, incorporate more low carb items in your daily menu. 

Vegetables like zucchini, broccoli, cucumber, mushrooms, cabbage are a great option as add ons to your menu.

Pre-planning goes a long way here. Sitting down and planning an entire week’s worth of meal plan can allow you to take all aspects of your taste palate, budget, and items to avoid, be considered. It will also help you stick to the plan and be mentally more accepting of keto. 

All in all

mulher-sorrindo-1

As much as the keto diet has become famous for losing weight effectively and maintain a fit and healthy lifestyle, there are more than a few medical benefits to it as well. Studies have indicated how this low-carb, high-fat diet is helpful for people with diabetes and epilepsy.

It may also prove beneficial for certain types of cancers, Alzheimer’s disease, PCOS, Parkinson’s disease, and a few others. However, these claims need further validation from more thorough researches.

If you have begun your keto diet or are planning to start, ensure to follow the following necessary steps:

      • Make sure you step up with all your concepts cleared
      • Previous notions regarding fat should be resolved.
      • Pay attention to avoid high-carbs. 
      • Limit them to 20-50 grams each day. 
      • Invest in high-fat foods. 
      • Eat-in portions.
      • Be consistent and devoted
      • Make a diet plan 
      • Keep yourself motivated through weekly meal plans, 
      • Experimenting with different recipes 
      • Keeping a check on your keto calorie calculator 
      • Exercise.

We hope we have helped in lessening the stigma around the consumption of fat. Believe in the science fellow keto-ers! If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to leave them below.

How much water should you drink on a Keto Diet? This is a rhetoric question to answer since the amount of water one should drink is difficult to standardize! The amount water intake to the body depends on factors like; age, weight, diet and the activity level of your body. This amount is subject to change and therefore there is no definite amount that one can consume in a day.

Water is an essential component that aids in the smooth running of the body like transportation of nutrients, regulation of temperature, and removal of waste material from your body. Water creates medium and environment for the body cells to perform their functions.

Keto Diet and Water

Start your day with some warm lemon water

When you are on a Keto diet, your body metabolizes stored fats. Keto diet is a low carb high-fat diet. Once the body is subjected to low carb, it turns to the stored carbs and burns them to get energy for your body. Subjecting your body to a high-fat diet makes it difficult for your body to break down the nutrients in food and convert them to energy without water.

Taking Keto diet with the required amount of water needed by your body, speeds up weight loss. During ketosis, your liver releases glycogen, glucose (sugar) in storage format. For every gram of glycogen released, two grams of water are released in urine. This is a huge loss and it should be compensated with more water intake.

So you should at least take 2.5 to 3 liters of water per day to replace the amount of water lost in the urine. While on ketosis your body loses a lot of water as a result of low carb. Carbs are responsible for water retention and therefore consumption of water on Keto diet is essential. 

How Does Water Help Prevent Dehydration When on a Keto Diet?

agua-mineral-1024x681

Keto Diet is associated with high level of dehydration. Dehydration is a common symptom because your body losses a lot of water through urine production.

When you eliminate carbs from your diet your insulin level drops. Therefore, your kidneys release stored sodium and water. Production of sodium and water makes you feeling thirsty.

Many research on Keto find out that that the ketogenic diet increases the risk of developing kidney stones. Therefore, drinking enough water prevents the kidney from developing kidney stones. Additionally, water helps in filtering out unnecessary toxins in your body that are harmful. 

Maintaining the same amount of water intake before and after the Keto diet makes your body to be on thirst mode. Thirsty mode is mostly known as Keto flu which is not a viral illness.

 

Apparently, when one experiences Keto flu, the body feels fatigued, nausea, irritable and your mouth turns out to be dry throughout. Chronic dehydration interferes with the results that you anticipate from the Keto diet. 

Truth on Drinking Eight Glasses of Water Daily While on Keto Diet

blog-featured-beverages-20180629

There is absolutely no scientific research to prove if this statement is true.  However, the myth may be helpful but different people have different degrees of urge towards water intake. Since you are on Keto diet you are already having challenges on, how much water should I drink on Keto? It will be wrong to follow this myth to guide you on your daily consumption. 

Some Ketogenic experts recommend drinking 140 ounces or higher per day. But it is not easy to drink the recommended amount of water due to different factors and reasons.

It is important for you to know that, it is not easy for you to drink the exact amount of water your body requires. However, the following are ways to help you improve your water intake and stay hydrated.

  • You should drink water after meals and immediately you wake up so that you keep your body healthy.
  • Set alarm to remind you on intervals to drink water throughout the day to prevent any form of forgetfulness.
  • You should eat vegetables with high water content like spinach, cucumber and water melons that make your body hydrated. 
  • You should always carry a bottle of water.
  • Listen to your body and drink water when you feel thirsty
  • Avoid drinking flavored water or sports drinks this is because the sugar content will be too high.
  • Squeeze lemon or lime juice to add flavor in your water in case you find plain water tasteless or boring and the juice also adds some health benefits.
  • Add salt in your water as a natural electrolyte. 

How Does Water Prevent Electrolytes Imbalance?

gettyimages-527656332-1550246897

Electrolytes are minerals that carry electric charge when dissolved in a fluid. Electrolytes are found in urine, sweat, and blood. Electrolytes like magnesium, potassium, and sodium are important for hydration because of fluid balance in the human body.

Keto diet causes electrolyte imbalance in your body. Electrolytes balance usually take place between water and electrolytes during ketosis. When you are on a Keto diet, your body is losing a lot of water when converting glycogen to energy. This process leads to loose of electrolytes since the electrolytes are dissolved in water.

Keto diet also maintains low level of insulin in your body by flushing out sodium and this replenishes crucial and essential electrolyte. Inadequate electrolytes like sodium can cause weakness and muscle cramping and electrolyte imbalance is also linked to symptoms of “keto flu”.

The most important thing you should remember as a Keto dieter is to be aware of your electrolyte balance. Electrolytes are necessary for the overall functioning of your muscles, nervous system, brain, heart, and other organs.

Headaches are common side effects of electrolytes imbalances and dehydration. This occurs when once is on Keto diets as a result of consuming fewer carbohydrates. Keto diet is a suitable treatment for drug-resistant cluster headaches.

Measures on How to Hydrate Your Body If You Are on Keto Diet

7bca78b6-2fb5-479d-9122-c71e6813a823-stocksy_txp068f3f11prt100_small_770115

Water keeps your body hydrated with the right amount of water for it to function at its optimal level. It is important to ensure that you drink enough water to stay hydrated. Many people who are on Keto Diet have specific measures that guide them to stay hydrated. Some of the measures that help them stay hydrated are outlined as follows:

  • You can use the color and smell of your urine. Color and smell of your urine can tell if you are drinking enough water. You need to ensure that your urine is almost as clear as water. The same urine should have no smell as a good indication that your body is well hydrated.
  • You can drink half the number of pounds you weigh in ounces. If you weigh 160pounds you need to drink 80 ounces of water. Other recommendations need people to consume close to 3.7 liters of water for men and 2.7 liters for women.
  • On average 20% of your daily water intake comes from food and 80% from drinks. When you are on Keto diet, it important to know that the amount of plain water you take is not counted in the 20% that is found in food. Remember caffeinated drinks are not water, for example coffee, tea, and soda.

Staying hydrated helps you not to confuse thirst for hunger.  It is important to know because when you feel thirsty you should not give your body food instead of water.  Your body needs water to digest food. Conversely, drinking too much water is also not good for your health.  

Taking more than enough water causes over-hydration of your body cells. Over-hydration may cause your body to flush electrolytes and other minerals in the cell to cause imbalance of the electrolytes. It’s important to stay hydrated as it will increase your mood, general physical performance of your body, alertness and complete well-being of your body.

Final Verdict

water-and-health

There is no fixed amount of water for one to take while on a Keto diet. The best advice on the amount of water you should take should come from your doctor or dietitian. Experts are able to know the amount of water to take while on a Keto diet to ensure that it balances with your electrolyte levels. Experts will also recommend the right quantities of water intake for different situations.  

Additionally, you can use this statement “How do I feel” as a guiding statement that will help your body to communicate a thirst feeling. There is no formula used to calculate how much water you should drink in a day. 

Human bodies are different and function differently. Thus, universal figures and formulas are not a reliable estimate on your own body water needs. 

Finally, water plays an essential role to the human body in helping all the functions of the body to work successfully. Water intake to your body is subject to variability based on different situations like availability of water, your body capacity to create the urge for water intake and your personal initiative to take water. Therefore, it’s upon you to control your levels of water intake to have a healthy lifestyle.