Why am I Not Losing Weight on a Ketogenic Diet?

Why am I not losing weight on a ketogenic diet?

For those of you who don’t fully understand what a ketogenic diet is, it’s a low carbohydrate and high fat diet that produces ketones in the liver to be used as energy.

When you enter a state of ketosis from following a high fat, low carbohydrate diet, some benefits in addition to weight loss are better brain function, more energy, and enhanced physical performance.

Glucose and Carbohydrates

Most of us have been taught that we need glucose from carbohydrates to fuel us throughout the day and perform better upon physical exertion. And while someone who is very athletic may able to maintain their weight or stay lean while loading up on pasta and grains – it may not be the right strategy for a semi-active person who wants to LOSE WEIGHT.

When glucose is the main source of energy, it does not rely on the fat you ingest and therefore it gets stored (causing weight gain). Alternatively, following a ketogenic diet doesn’t rely on glucose. It is carbohydrate restricted – so the fat consumed becomes the primary source of fuel… This has a unique effect on the body in that you can eat copious amounts and it won’t actually make you gain weight. You will often lose weight! This almost seems counter intuitive, but your body goes into a fat burning metabolic state after starving yourself of carbohydrates.

Why am I not losing weight on a ketogenic diet?

3 Possible reasons

For individuals using a ketogenic diet for weight loss, it has to be followed carefully. If you find yourself asking, “Why am I not losing weight on a ketogenic diet?”, there are three possible reasons why:

1. You are overeating.

Yes, you should favor fats over carbohydrates but that still doesn’t mean you can wolf down unlimited avocadoes, a bottle of olive oil on your salads or douse your food in bacon grease followed by fat bombs for dessert. The emphasis shouldn’t be on calories but they still count!

2. You are confusing keto with The Atkins Diet.

A ketogenic diet is very specific with its macros. 60-75% of calories should come from fat, 15-30% of calories should come from protein and 5-10% of calories should come from carbs. Often people think a keto diet is a high protein low- carb diet. Too much protein can keep you out of ketosis and reliant on glucose for fuel rather than fat.

3. You are overshooting your carbs.

Even if you are eliminating grains, you may be getting too many carbohydrates. It could be through fruits, starchy vegetables or beverages that contain sugar. You unfortunately can’t do keto half way. I often see the mistake of people eating a very high fat meal and then they want to add a small piece of bread or a little rice (thinking it’s pretty harmless). The only reason you are able to use the dietary fat for fuel is because you are not being dependant on glucose. Once you change the equation by adding in extra carbs, you will be pushed out of ketosis and weight gain can likely happen!

Make a Plan

One of the biggest ways to make sure you do well on a ketogenic diet is to plan ahead. Go food shopping and stock up on healthy fats that will keep you satiated all day. If you don’t have the time you can order from Thrive Market online. This will prevent you from resorting to eating carbohydrate rich snacks when you feel hungry and desperate. Some staples should be avocadoes, anchovies, sardines, olives, nut and nut butters, olive oil, coconut oil and avocado oil.

You should also shop for an assortment of healthy meats, fish and poultry (if you are not a vegetarian). This means reading labels to assure your meats are organic (to make sure they were not grain/corn fed or shot up with hormones and antibiotics) and the fish should be wild caught.

You can also use exogenous ketones to help you further achieve a state of ketosis. Exogenous ketones are ketones that are ingested through a nutritional supplement or powder. This differs than ketones produced in the liver which is referred to as endogenous. Just be sure not to rely on taking a supplement to achieve ketosis rather than focusing on your diet. Taking oral ketones are best to only complement your current  ketogenic protocol.


Schedule a Consultation with Oz Garcia

Next time you ask yourself, “Why am I not losing weight on a ketogenic diet?”, consider these three reasons above. If you are interested in finding out more about how to make sure you are losing weight AND staying healthy, schedule an appointment today. Please schedule below or contact us by email: info@ozgarcia.com or phone: 212-362-5569.