Posts

Reaching Optimal Ketosis for Weight Loss

As much as ketosis could be a therapeutic health measure, it is also a medium for you to achieve weight loss. The ketosis state is easily reached on a low carb and high-fat diet, and this conditions your body to burn off fats as the main source of energy instead of carbs. 

Many people prefer adopting the keto diet for reasons such as improving blood sugar levels, appetite reduction, and maintenance of body mass. But the real question is; what is the specific ketone level to achieve the needed weight loss? This piece borders on the ideal ketone levels to attain weight loss, and how to measure them.

What is the Ideal Ketosis Level for Weight Loss? – Why Do You Even Need to Know Ketone Levels When You Can Track Weight?

weight loss

When you start the keto diet, your body takes some days to exhaust its carbs which your liver and muscles store as glycogen. Once this happens, your body then produces ketones from the stored body fat or dietary fat to burn as energy.

After some time, ketone levels will be easily detected in your blood. The blood level ketone range is typically between 0.5 – 3.0 mg/dL. These levels are the optimal nutritional ketosis range, and this range is the ideal ketosis level to boost weight and fat loss.

Ketones are usually generated by the liver as part of the fatty acid metabolism process. In healthy conditions, these ketones are fully metabolized, leaving very few, if any, ketones in the urine. If the body is unable to obtain sufficient glucose for energy for whatever reason, it will switch to utilizing body fats, resulting in an increase in ketone generation and the detection of ketones in the blood and urine.

More so, you must check your ketone levels even if you are keeping tabs on your weight. This is because tracking your weight alone simply gives you part of the “bigger picture.” For instance, muscle increment contributes to your body weight, but it could also indicate improved health.

Thus, tracking your ketone level helps you to be sure of how effective your diet has been and whether you need to make some alterations. Technically, it shows how effective your burn off fats.

Related: Keto Diet for Beginners

What is Optimal Ketosis and What Do the Test Results Mean?  

exercise for weight loss

As earlier mentioned, the optimal ketosis level is 0.5 – 3.0 mg/dL and it is also the best ketone range for weight loss. To enter ketosis, you must have eaten fewer than 50 grams of carbs within the range of 2 to 4 days. This is the normal range.

On the contrary, some people may take longer periods to reach ketosis and this depends on several factors such as protein intake, metabolism, age, fat, and the likes. The state of ketosis reaches people differently, and it is best to always run a test to check for ketone levels in the body. It could be either a blood or urine test. This means you can keep track of the improvement of your ketone levels as you immerse deeper into ketosis.

Moreover, it is possible to not reach ketosis after being on a ketogenic diet for quite a while. This could be as a result of not cutting down enough of your carbs intake, eating too much protein, and the likes. Consuming much protein could condition your body to use the gluconeogenesis process of converting amino acids to sugar. Too much sugar can hinder the production of ketones in the body.

How to Reach Optimum Ketone Levels?

To achieve optimal ketone levels, you would have to restrict your carb intake. Most persons who are on a keto diet restrict their carb intake to either 50 grams of total carbs, 25 grams of net carbs, or even fewer than that daily.

For those who don’t know, net carbs refer to the total number of carbs minus the amount of fiber. Your body would not start the production of ketones on its own until it burns through your glycogen stores. This wouldn’t also happen unless you cut off your body’s supply of dietary carbs.

As soon as you shift into ketosis, your body will be able to produce ketones for energy from either stored body fat or dietary fat.

Nutrition Tips to Reach Ketosis

ketosis for weight loss

Increasing physical activity

Exercise is an amazing way to deplete the glycogen stores in your body. Most of the time, the glycogen stores get replenished when a person consumes carbs. When a person is on a low-carb diet, they will not be replenishing their glycogen stores.

Increasing healthful fat intake

As your carbohydrate intake decreases, you can replace it with an increase in healthful fats. Some facts that you can consume are olive oil, flaxseed oil, avocados, and avocado oil.

Consuming more coconut oil

Coconut oil is essential in helping a person not only reach but also maintain a state of ketosis. A recent study showed that adding coconut oil to your diet may help people increase their ketone levels. Coconut oil contains fats known as medium-chain triglycerides. The body can quickly absorb this fat and send them to the liver where they are turned into ketones or energy.

Maintain adequate protein intake

Achieving ketosis absolutely requires a protein intake that is adequate but not excessive. It is necessary to consume so that the liver can be supplied with amino acids where it would be used for making glucose for energy. During the process, your liver will provide glucose for cells and organs in your body that cannot use ketones as fuel.

Test your ketone levels and adjust your diet as needed

Just like a lot of things in nutrition, maintain or achieving a state of ketosis is highly individualized. Thus, it is quite helpful to test your ketone levels just to make sure you are achieving your goals. This will help to determine whether or not your diet requires any adjustment. More so, this is also necessary for those who already know what the Ketogenic diet is.

Dietary Conditions That May Impair Ketosis

food for weight loss

One important aspect of the keto diet is personalizing it to your preferences, goals, and lifestyle. It is important to adjust your diet to fit these aspects of your life. This will make it easier to achieve and maintain the desired result.

Some diets that may impair ketosis are:

Foodgrains

Grains like whole wheat flour, wheat flour, and oatmeals are really high in carbohydrates which can hinder the process of ketosis. Although they can be consumed in limited quantities, it is still advisable to avoid them since they contain a high level of carbohydrates. Some of them to avoid are rice, rye, barley, corn, quinoa.

Fruits

Some fruits to avoid on a keto diet are grapes, dates, peaches, raisins, pears, and mangoes to mention but a few. These could hinder the process of ketosis.

Vegetables

Some non- keto-friendly vegetables to avoid are corn, carrot, peas, potatoes, baked potatoes, etc.

Legumes and Beans

Although legumes and beans are nutritious, they contain a high amount of carbohydrates. Avoid legumes and beans like lentils, green peas, labia, kidney beans, etc.

Beverages

The majority of drinks we consume are high in sugar and carbs and these could hinder ketone formation in the body. Some of them you should avoid are energy drinks, soda, margarita, cola, iced tea, protein shakes, etc.

Overview

In conclusion, your body begins to use ketones as fuel as soon as you get into ketosis. If you have adopted a Ketogenic diet for weight loss, getting into ketosis is vital in achieving that goal. Ensure to cut down on carbs intake, exercise, and eat keto-friendly foods. Moreover, don’t forget to test your ketone levels to check your progress.

Smart Exercise Goals for Weight Loss

 Are you looking forward to losing some weight this year? When the year starts, most of us set a resolution to lose weight and improve our health. When you decide to exercise for weight loss, you should have a plan. Know how much weight you intend to lose and what duration you want it to take. 

Setting goals when you choose a fitness program is the best you can do to lose weight. In this article, we let you know why it is important to set SMART goals when you are out to lose some pounds.

Related: 5 Tips for Starting a Fitness Routine

Katta Oturan Kadın Fotoğrafı

Why set a goal?

Just like in life, we need goals to keep us moving. Without a goal, you are not likely to work hard and live your dreams. When you set goals to lose weight, you can work out every day to target losing weight.

It won’t be easy to succeed with your weight loss program if you don’t have goals to guide you. A smart goal serves as a guide and roadmap for your weight loss journey. 

If you want to keep your fitness program on the right track, you should set a goal. So, how can you set a goal as a beginner in exercise? Most fitness coaches and trainers use the SMART criteria to help their trainees to set goals for training.

This method is used mainly in the employment sector to help workers define their strategies for success at work. You can use this system to set weight loss goals and succeed in the end.

smart exercise goals

How to set a SMART Goal for weight loss?

How do you set a smart goal and ensure you succeed in your fitness program as a beginner? It all begins with deciding to exercise. SMART is an acronym that stands for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound.

Specific 

When you decide to set goals for your fitness, always ensure they are specific. Set a milestone and accomplishment that you can easily reach. Sometimes it is important to start small and realize your goals as you progress. `

By reducing your BMI, you can reduce your risk of dependence on medication.

If you’ve gained some weight over the holidays, you can work out to lose some weight and regain your slim body. The best approach to losing weight is to set behavioural goals like changing your diet and making changes to your daily routine. 

Example: I want to get my optimal weight this year by running 15-30 minutes every morning or jogging in the evening.

Measurable

The weight loss goals you set should be measurable if you want to keep track of your progress. You should decide on how you are going to measure your success throughout your fitness journey. Start by thinking of items you want to drop off your list. 

Everyone has his way of measuring how hard they are working out. Perhaps you’ve been tracking your progress and realized you are only walking 1,000 steps a day. Instead of saying you will walk more, you can be specific and state that you will be walking 3,000 steps a day. Come up with measurable goals that you can write down and stick to it.

Example: I will drop 10 pounds in four months by exercising five days a week and eating a balanced diet. 

Attainable 

It is important to evaluate your history and behavioural changes to make your weight loss goals achievable. For instance, if you have never lost 5 pounds on your weight loss plan, saying you will lose 20 pounds in three months is not attainable. Again, if you set a goal that you will be working out every day and haven’t met that in a week, your goal is not attainable. 

The trick here is to set a goal you can easily attain. Once you set an achievable goal, you can easily move to the next step and set a new goal. Set a goal that is not that overwhelming to you. Start small when developing a fitness goal and once you achieve the small things, you can always set some ‘hard’ goals and work towards them.

Example: I will drop 20 pounds in five months. I will accomplish this goal by applying a 52-week healthy eating challenge.

Relevant

Being relevant is the most critical part of setting your goals. When setting your goals, you should make them more relevant to your fitness program. The idea here is to ensure your goals fit well with your priorities. The fitness goals you set should be relevant to the things you consider more important to you. 

You should ask yourself why meeting the goal you have set is that important to you. Do you want to gain more energy to do the things you love or simply want to become a role model to your kids? Always think of those priorities in life and how setting this goal will help you meet them. 

When you are tempted to quit working out, you can always remind yourself of the reasons you started exercising in the first place. It will keep you on the right track to achieving your fitness goals.

Example:  Working out by walking uphill for 20-30 minutes every day will help me lose weight in three months. I will be able to move comfortably and get up to play with my kids.

Time-Bound 

When it comes to realizing your fitness goal, you should give yourself some time. Time limit is an essential factor you should always consider when working out and setting your goal. You should decide on the amount of time it will take you to achieve your goals.

When setting your weight loss goals, you should always consider that losing 1-2 pounds per week is healthy. At the start of a weight loss program, most people tend to lose weight quickly. 

If you choose behavioural change as a way of losing weight, you should set a specific date that you will check to find out if you’re making any progress. 

Example: I will re-evaluate my weight loss progress after eight weeks of exercise. I will also make adjustments to my fitness routine so that I am able to achieve my goals in time.

Overcoming a Weight Loss Plateau: The Last Five Pounds

You have been dieting and exercising for a long time, and as a result, you have lost weight. There are five more pounds to go, but the scale has stopped and you don’t know why. You have hit a weight loss plateau. But don’t get discouraged. This is a common phrase that everyone experiences when they try to lose weight.

So how can you overcome this weight loss plateau? Here are ten effective tips to help you breakthrough.

1. Track everything you eat

Are you really aware of the food you’re eating throughout the day? Maybe you are snacking without realizing it. To stop mindless eating, write down everything you consume during the day. It helps you become aware of what and how much you eat.

Overcoming a Weight Loss Plateau: The Last Five Pounds

2. Check your portion size

So you have kicked your bad habit of eating fast food, sweets, pasta, and bread, and you have been eating healthy. But are you checking your portion sizes? As your weight decreases, you have to decrease your portion size, too. Continuing to eat the same amounts as when you started dieting may be the reason why your weight loss has stopped. Also, don’t forget that ALL food has calories. If you are eating a big smoothie with extra peanut butter, it may be time to change your breakfast and cut back on your portion sizes.

3. Increase exercise frequency or intensity

Maybe your body has adapted to your exercise program and sees it as a daily routine. If you are going to the gym 1-2 days a week, make it 3-4 days a week instead. Or try increasing your exercise time from 30 minutes to 45 minutes per day. In addition, try different exercises that your body isn’t used to. This revision will reverse the weight loss plateau.

Overcoming a Weight Loss Plateau: The Last Five Pounds

4. Stop late-night snacking

You are eating healthy during the day, but you aren’t as careful at night. This will sabotage your diet and weight loss efforts. Try not to eat after dinner or a snack before bedtime.

5. Don’t weigh every day

Weigh yourself once a week. Seeing bigger changes on the scale will be more motivating.

6. Cut out carbs, increase fat and protein intake

If you haven’t tried a ketogenic diet before, a radical change like this could trigger your body and help you overcome the plateau phase. A ketogenic diet is a low carb, high-fat diet where you limit bread, pasta, rice, grains and legumes, fruits, milk and milk products, and any food that contains carbohydrates. Applying this type of diet for 7-10 days will help you lose 4-6 pounds. While it can be effective, this type of diet may not be the right choice for you. Talk to your doctor or a nutritionist before starting any kind of fast or major dietary change.

Overcoming a Weight Loss Plateau: The Last Five Pounds

7. Try intermittent fasting

Another type of diet that can break the weight loss plateau is intermittent fasting. IF diets have recently gained in popularity, and there are different application methods. You can choose the most suitable type of fasting from our previous blog article, A fast and Feast Diet: Intermittent Fasting. The most common method is 16 hours of fasting and 8 hours of eating.

8. Manage stress and get more sleep

Stress can keep you from losing weight. It boosts the cortisol hormone which increases belly fat storage. Learning to manage stress will help you lose weight. In addition, sleep is extremely important for good mental, emotional, and physical health. To support weight loss, aim for 7-8 hours of sleep per night.

9. Avoid alcohol

Alcohol is another factor that may be sabotaging your weight loss. Don’t forget that alcoholic beverages have calories, too. In the short run, alcohol increases your water weight, and in the long run, it suppresses fat burning and leads to belly fat accumulation.

10. Be patient

Don’t give up on yourself and don’t forget that this weight loss plateau will change if you remain patient. Try to stay motivated and continue to diet while trying to identify the reason behind it.

If you have tried all these steps and still can’t lose weight by yourself, seek help from a professional. Other medical factors such as hormonal problems, menopause, or pregnancy could be the cause.

How to Motivate Yourself to Lose Weight?

Failed diets, gyms which you do not attend regularly, extra pounds that you cannot lose. Do you need a little motivation? The advice below is just right for you. Be honest with yourself:

Why do you want to lose weight?

Do you want a bikini body for the summer, or do you want to improve your health?

Give yourself time

If you want to lose extra pounds quickly but you gained the weight over a long period of time, think again. Your body will show resistance in the beginning because you have given up healthy eating habits. Set yourself realistic goals during this period so that you can actually follow them.

Don’t follow super-skinny models

Stop comparing your own body with the supermodels you see on Instagram. Instead, follow people who have lost weight and are peaceful with their bodies.

How to Motivate Yourself to Lose Weight?

Realize the truth behind your eating behaviors

If you are using eating to soothe or suppress a particular emotion, no diet will work. You must first make peace with that emotion. In this situation, dieting may even harm your self-confidence, causing you to be angry with yourself and eat again to handle this anger. Your goal should not be short-term weight loss but instead to develop and maintain healthy eating habits. Before starting any diet, try to address the deeper problems that cause you to search for comfort in food. If you’re having a weight loss plateau problem, check this article to help you.

Visualize the new you

What does your dream body look like? What is your ideal weight? Visualize this body often, and even start to behave like you would in your ideal body. You will never really own things that you think about as existing only in the future tense.

How Can I Motivate Myself to Lose Weight

Consult the experts

When considering weight loss you should definitely get advice from experts. Do not refrain from consulting a dietitian for your diet, a sports trainer for your exercise, and a psychologist for emotional support.

Accept and love yourself

You yourself are the most important source of motivation on the journey of weight loss. Even if you cannot motivate yourself, stop criticizing. Research shows that the biggest obstacle to losing weight is mental resistance. Feeling anger and guilt over your extra pounds will cause your subconscious to insistently keep the extra weight. Don’t forget that the first decision for maintaining a healthy lifestyle is to accept yourself the way you are.

maintaining a healthy lifestyle is to accept yourself the way you are

The decision to live healthily is the first step to achieving a higher quality of life. Think of your weight loss process at the beginning of your new life. The advice above will help you on your journey.

Wishing you love and good health.

Gluten-Free Diet Is Good For Weight Loss?

In recent years, with food tolerance tests becoming easier to reach, you may have heard many people saying “I am allergic to gluten. Gluten makes me gain weight”. But what is the truth? Do gluten-free diets help you with losing weight? In regards to this, what is that thing called gluten? A lot of people do not even know what gluten is when doing gluten-free diets.

Gluten is a kind of protein found in barley, oats, and wheat.

The most efficient researches about gluten-free diets are done on celiac disease patients. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease that causes gluten to harm the small intestine. It is a disease seen in one in a hundred. When celiac patients consume gluten the small intestine is harmed and unable to absorb the nutrients out of foods properly. This causes the immune system to fail in time.

Celiac Disease

A research done in the United Kingdom in 2013 shows that 69% percent of the underweight people with celiac disease gained weight only after they were “diagnosed with the Celiac Disease”. It has been observed that 18% of the overweight and 42% of the obese people with celiac disease lost weight after they were diagnosed with the disease. However, another study was done in 2006 in the United Kingdom; the study shows that 81% of the people who were diagnosed with celiac disease gained weight. There are many inconsistencies in the studies that have been done. Therefore, speaking with any certainty is not possible. We can definitively say that a gluten-free diet does not guarantee weight loss. A gluten-free diet may cause you to lose weight, it may keep you the same, or it may cause you to gain weight…

Gluten-free diet does not mean low-calorie diet

Gluten-free diet does not mean low-calorie diet.

If it did, all the people with celiac disease would have no problems with their weight. The amount of food you eat is as important as what you eat. If you start eating gluten-free but eat a large portion of cornbread every day, you do not lose weight.

Peter Gibson, who is known for his researches on gluten sensitivity claims that the cause of the problem may not be gluten. But, it may be the pesticide used on wheat; glyphosate. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), glyphosate may cause depression, diabetes, celiac disease, and gluten sensitivity in addition to its possible cancerogenic effects. The most healthy way, of course, is to never use these types of chemicals in agriculture.

gluten-free diet for weight loss

Lastly, if you are not gluten sensitive or have celiac disease, I do not recommend the GLUTEN-FREE diet for the sake of losing weight.