Today I’m going to be talking about why you might be gaining weight on the keto diet, when the whole point is to lose weight.
This is a very important point because I went through that and I know exactly whats going on and why it happens and what to do about it.
If you are new to the Keto Diet and want a comprehensive program to help get started, go here to see my number1 recommended 30-Day Keto Meal Plan.
2 Reasons for Gaining Weight on Keto
1. Not Lowering Your Calories Enough
Say you’re new to Ketosis and not losing weight. You start to realize every time you go to check your weight you are gaining instead of losing weight. Yes, that can happen most of the time to lots of people.
Why? Because when you are removing your carbs there’s a process when your body is actually trying to transform. Your body is adapting from using carbs as energy to using fat.
So, in the beginning, you need to eat a lot of fat. like 80 to 90% minimum 75% of your total calories.
For example; let’s say you eat 2000 calories and you start eating more fats, so of course, you’re going to be gaining weight on keto.
You have to have your fats high in order to get into ketosis, so how do we deal with this?
If before you started keto you were eating 2000 calories with high carbs and now you want to start a keto diet you have to go step-by-step.
1g of fat has 9 calories 1g of protein has 4 calories and 1g of carbs has 4 calories.
So you’re eating the same calories but your eating more fat. So, of course, you’re not losing weight and gaining weight on keto because you’re not in your deficit.
People think if I’m eating fat and not carbs I’m losing weight. No, it doesn’t work like that. Also you’re not in ketosis yet, you’re not adapted, you’re not using your ketones to burn fat.
If they’re gaining weight you can lower your calories by 200 calories or 10% less. If you’re not losing weight after cutting 10 percent of your calories you but you are maintaining your weight, that is fine until you’re adapted.
Sometimes you have to gain weight in the adapting process before you can lose weight. So just be patient, don’t’ weigh yourself every single day. Maybe every 2 weeks or weekly.
2. Not Adjusting Your Macros Properly
Let’s say you have almost a year in the keto diet and you’re really losing weight,
you’re fully adapted then. You have been eating high fat to get into ketosis and then you’re losing weight.
Then one day you stop losing weight and then starting to gain weight. Or you lose half a pound then gain 2 pounds etc.
First of all you have to redo your calories because everytime you lose weight you need less calories.
Somebody who is 200 pounds doesn’t need the same calories as someone who is 145 pounds. You have to adjust the calories and at the same time that you’re losing weight.
Let’s say you been eating 80% fat 15% protein and 5% carbs. You were actually losing weight before but now, because you’re fully adapted, you don’t need to eat that much fat.
Why? Because you’re burning fat, you’re fully adapted to using ketones to burn fat. You’re burning the fat that you’re eating instead of ketones.
Lower Your Fat, Raise Protein
So what I do is I lower my fat intake to 60 to 65% at the most, and then I raise the protein. You can try o raise the carbs a little bit also.
So that is a good example of why sometimes we’re not losing weight.
Adjust your calories and adjust your macros. Your macros maybe too high in fat. That’s why you’re not losing fat.
How Much Calories You Cut Depends on Your Activity
If you are gaining weight on keto, make sure you are calculating your macros correctly. Let’s say you need 1800 calories just to move around and be alive. 1800 is your Base Metabolic Rate (BMR).
How to Calculate Your BMR
|BMR calculation for men (metric)||BMR = 66.5 + ( 13.75 × weight in kg ) + ( 5.003 × height in cm ) – ( 6.755 × age in years )|
|BMR calculation for men (imperial)||BMR = 66 + ( 6.2 × weight in pounds ) + ( 12.7 × height in inches ) – ( 6.76 × age in years )|
|BMR calculation for women (metric)||BMR = 655.1 + ( 9.563 × weight in kg ) + ( 1.850 × height in cm ) – ( 4.676 × age in years )|
|BMR calculation for women (imperial)||BMR = 655.1 + ( 4.35 × weight in pounds ) + ( 4.7 × height in inches ) – ( 4.7 × age in years )|
If You Do Light or No Activity
If you do a light exercise or have a job where you stand or walk you should go for a 10 to 15% deficit.
If you do no exercise you are more likely to be gaining weight on keto, so you should go for a 20% deficit.
I recommend exercise at least 2 to 3 times a week. You can just do some walking.
If You Are Moderately or Very Active
If you’re more active, let’s say you workout 4 times a week lifting weights. I would go with a 10% deficit for weight loss.
So the more exercise you do the fewer calories you cut because you want those calories to give you energy for your workout.
If you want to maintain your weight you eat your full BMR calories and exercise. If you want to lose weight you cut 10 to 15 percent deficit from your calories.
For example, if I need to eat 1500 calories to maintain, I would subtract 10% to get 1350 or 15% to get 1275 calories.
Don’t worry about losing muscle, The Ketogenic preserves your muscles, so you’re not going to lose your muscles. You’re only going to lose your fat from eating less fat.
Just remember, you have to burn more calories than what you are ingesting. You have to use more calories than what you are giving your body.
So the lighter you are the fewer calories you can eat.
Other Factors To Gaining Weight On the Keto Diet
Lack of Sleep
We need to sleep 8 hours every night to recover. We lose weight when we’re sleeping. That’s why we weigh ourselves in the morning. That’s when you see if we lost or gained weight.
We need to actually sleep, not just going to bed and watching tv we need a good sleep.
Lack of Electrolytes
Another thing super important is electrolytes. You can ingest electrolytes through your salts. You can use Pink Himalayan salt, Sea Salt or Kosher Salt. We need 2 tablespoons of salt every day to get our electrolytes.
Not Enough Magnesium
Take magnesium supplements also. It gives you more energy, helps you sleep better and keeps your digestive system working better.
You can get both of these in one supplement such as Perfect Keto Base.
When starting out you are not adapted yet to burning fat as energy, so you may be actually gaining weight on keto. You may have to settle for maintaining weight until you adapt, but make sure you are cutting enough calories.
After you are keto-adapted you don’t need to eat 80 percent of fat. Drop the fat a bit and watch the scale drop again.
I hope this was helpful and I taught you some new things.
And remember to go here to see my number1 recommended 30-Day Keto Meal Plan.