Things To Consider Before Starting The Keto Diet

  • Author: Kara
  • Date: August 21, 2023
  • Time to Read: 14 min.
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Are you considering starting the keto diet? If so, there are a few things to consider before taking the plunge. The keto diet has been gaining traction in recent years as an effective way to lose weight and improve overall health, but it isn’t for everyone. Whether you’re new to nutrition or have been experimenting with different diets for years, understanding what this popular diet entails is key to making sure it’s right for you. Let’s go over some of the important considerations that will help ensure your success while following the keto diet!

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The keto diet may seem like a good choice if you want to make lasting changes to your lifestyle and eating habits.

But even though this high-fat, low-carbohydrate approach can be successful in helping people achieve their goals, there are certain aspects of it that should be taken into account beforehand.

From deciphering food labels and counting macros to managing cravings and staying motivated, these factors all contribute to how well someone does on the keto diet—and whether or not they’ll stick with it long term.

It takes more than just dedication and willpower when embarking on a dietary journey; having knowledge about every aspect of healthy eating is essential too.

So if you’re thinking of trying out the ketogenic lifestyle, take time to learn everything there is to know about it first.

Understanding why certain foods work better than others on this type of regimen, as well as how best to manage cravings and stay committed throughout the process will set you up for success down the road!

Overview Of The Keto Diet

The ketogenic diet, commonly referred to as the keto diet, is a type of diet that focuses on reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fats.

This change in macronutrient composition—a decrease in carbs and an increase in fat—allows the body to enter into a state called ‘ketosis’ where its primary source of energy comes from burning stored fat instead of glucose.

The health benefits associated with this diet include weight loss, increased energy levels, improved mental focus/ clarity, decreased inflammation, better sleep patterns, and better blood sugar control.

Although there are numerous potential health benefits for those who follow the keto diet correctly, it does come with some risks if not done properly.

For instance, due to the high-fat content of this diet plan, people may be at risk for developing heart disease or kidney problems if they do not reduce their saturated fat intake accordingly.

Additionally, individuals must ensure they’re receiving adequate amounts of vitamins and minerals by incorporating fresh vegetables into their meals.

Otherwise, deficiencies can occur leading to unwanted side effects such as fatigue or muscle cramps.

The keto diet has gained immense popularity over recent years due to its potential beneficial impact on overall health when followed correctly.

However, just like any other lifestyle change it’s important to consult your healthcare provider before starting the diet so you can assess whether or not it’s right for you.

Macronutrient Ratios

Starting a keto diet is an exciting journey, but before you embark on this new lifestyle it’s important to consider the macronutrient ratios.

On a ketogenic diet, carbs are severely restricted and replaced with fats while proteins are kept moderate.

This low carb approach helps force your body into burning fat instead of glucose for energy. In order to enter into ketosis, most diets require reducing carbohydrate intake to under 20 grams per day.

The purpose of decreasing carbohydrates is to deplete glycogen stores in the liver which forces the body to burn stored fat for fuel.

As opposed to other low-carb diets such as Atkins or South Beach that allow higher amounts of protein consumption, the traditional keto diet focuses primarily on high fat consumption combined with moderate or even lower levels of protein intake.

It’s essential when beginning a keto diet that you focus on foods high in healthy fats like avocados, nuts, and fish so that your body can enter and remain in ketosis.

In addition to focused eating habits, making sure you’re getting enough electrolytes (such as sodium) will also help boost your performance during workouts.

Electrolytes can be found naturally occurring in food sources like broccoli, mushrooms, and spinach or alternatively taken as supplements if necessary.

Minimizing processed foods as well as processed carbohydrates will help ensure maximum benefit from starting a keto diet; doing so will assist in keeping blood sugar levels stable throughout the day leading to better physical performance and mental clarity overall.

Macronutrient Distribution

Now that you have an understanding of your daily calorie intake, it’s time to look at the macronutrient distribution for the keto diet.

Carbohydrate intake should be limited to no more than 20 grams per day in order to reach and remain in a state of nutritional ketosis.

This means that most of your calories will come from fats (70%), followed by proteins (25%).

Consuming exogenous ketones can also help with achieving optimal blood sugar control and maintaining proper levels of energy during this period.

In addition, keep in mind that some people may benefit from higher amounts of protein while on the ketogenic diet.

This is because adequate protein intake helps support muscle mass maintenance which is essential for overall health and well-being. It’s important to remember that everyone’s body responds differently, so you’ll need to experiment with different ratios until you find what works best for you individually.

Ultimately, having a clear idea of how much carbohydrates, fat, and protein are required each day is key when starting out on the keto diet.

Food Selections

When starting the keto diet, it’s important to consider food selections. When selecting foods for your meals, focus on those that are keto compliant – high in healthy fats and proteins with low amounts of carbohydrates.

To reach optimal nutritional balance, try to incorporate a variety of options into each meal you eat.

Starchy vegetables such as potatoes, sweet potatoes, and squash should be avoided due to their high carb content. Instead, opt for leafy greens like spinach or kale and non starchy veggies like broccoli, peppers, and cauliflower.

Above ground vegetables generally have fewer carbs than below-ground varieties so prioritize these over root crops when possible.

Eating enough protein is also essential; aim for 1g per pound of body weight per day if you’re active or 0.8g if sedentary.

Remember to keep an eye out for hidden carbs too!

Some seemingly innocent ingredients can add up quickly so read nutrition labels carefully and make sure all components of your plate fit within your daily macros goal before enjoying your meal.

Metabolic Adaptation

When embarking on a keto diet, it’s important to understand the metabolic adaptation that your body will undergo.

When carbohydrates are limited, the body enters into a state of nutritional ketosis and starts using fat as its primary fuel source instead of glucose.

This process is beneficial for reducing blood sugar spikes, regulating insulin levels, and depleting glycogen reserves.

The transition period when adapting to this new way of eating can be challenging for some people. Common symptoms include fatigue, low energy levels, headaches, nausea, insomnia, and irritability.

To successfully make it through this adaptation phase requires patience and determination but once you do – you’ll be well on your way toward achieving optimal health with the help of ketosis!

Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting is an important factor to consider when starting a keto diet. It helps the body achieve its health goals by allowing for periods of eating and not eating.

During these times, your body will use fat as its primary energy source instead of carbohydrates.

This process can be beneficial in helping you reach your desired keto body.

During intermittent fasting, blood sugar levels are kept low which causes water loss from the body.

To replace lost fluids, make sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day so that you don’t become dehydrated or experience any negative side effects such as dizziness or headaches.

Additionally, adding electrolytes into your daily routine can help maintain proper hydration while on a keto diet.

It’s essential to keep in mind that although Intermittent Fasting has many benefits, it should still be monitored closely in order to avoid potential problems associated with going too long without food.

Therefore taking time to develop an appropriate schedule based on your individual needs and goals is key for successful results when beginning a keto diet.


When beginning the keto diet, it’s important to consider what supplements you may need.

Supplements can play an integral part in helping you reach your goals on the keto diet by ensuring you are meeting your daily nutrient requirements and staying healthy during your journey.

While some people may find they don’t need any additional supplements while following the keto lifestyle, others might benefit from taking specific products like fish oil or magnesium.

It’s always best to consult with your doctor or another healthcare professional when considering what supplements will be most helpful for you.

Eating Out Considerations

Now that you’ve considered the supplements necessary for a successful keto diet program, it’s time to think about eating out.

Eating out can present some challenges when following a low-carb or high-fat diet.

First and foremost is being aware of your carb intake; most restaurants have nutrition information on their websites so make sure you check before heading out.

Additionally, be mindful of the fat content in any meal you order as overdoing it could lead to elevated cholesterol levels and an increased risk for cardiovascular disease.

When ordering food at a restaurant, try to keep your daily carbohydrate consumption under 20 grams per day.

This means keeping track of all sources of carbohydrates including bread, condiments, sauces, dressings, and desserts. Be sure to load up on healthy fats such as olive oil, coconut oil, and avocado while avoiding nutrient deficiencies by adding plenty of vegetables with each meal.

Doing this will ensure you stay full longer and help keep cravings at bay. All these considerations are important if you want to stick with your new keto lifestyle!

Check out this guide to eating out on keto.

Exercise And Activity Levels

Exercise and activity levels are an important part of any lifestyle change, especially when it comes to the keto diet. It’s like a roadmap that guides you in your journey towards better health and weight loss goals — they provide direction and keep you on track.

To get the most out of this way of life, take stock of your current exercise and activity level before starting the keto diet.

Start by assessing how much physical activity you currently do each week; if you want to make improvements in your mental clarity, energy levels or body composition then try increasing your activity level gradually as time goes on.

Think about incorporating some light weights into your weekly routine for added benefit – just 10-15 minutes per day is enough to start seeing results.

If you’re new to exercising consider joining a gym or looking online for guided exercise routines so that you can stay motivated throughout the process.

The key takeaway here is that with regular exercise coupled with a healthy eating plan such as the keto diet, you’ll be well on your way to achieving all of those weight loss tips and more.

So don’t forget to include activities such as walking, running, or swimming into your daily schedule – these will help ensure long term success on your path to better overall health.

Monitoring Progress

Monitoring progress is an important part of starting the keto diet. It helps to keep you accountable and motivated on your journey, as well as giving insight into how your body responds to the new changes in fuel sources for energy.

Here are a few key things to consider when monitoring progress:

  • Keeping track of blood pressure;
  • Measuring your body fat percentage;
  • Monitoring blood glucose levels.

By tracking these metrics, it will give you valuable feedback on how you’re doing with regard to the dietary change.

The goal isn’t just weight loss, but rather finding a balance between the right amount of body fat and muscle mass while keeping other health factors such as blood pressure and glucose levels in check.

This ensures that your body has enough fuel from carbs without going overboard or not having enough. Doing this regularly can ensure that you stay healthy throughout the process!

Social Support System

Now that you’ve established a plan to monitor your progress, it’s time to focus on another key element of the keto diet: having a social support system in place.

This means creating an environment where you feel supported as you begin this journey and throughout.

Having someone who can understand what you’re going through not only helps keep you accountable but makes the process easier and more enjoyable.

Whether it be family members or friends, having people around who are familiar with the keto lifestyle will help make the transition smoother.

You should also consider connecting with online groups of like-minded individuals and diet advocates for additional encouragement and motivation throughout your journey.

Aside from emotional support, enlisting help from health professionals is critical in ensuring success on the keto diet.

Professional guidance provides insight into how certain foods might affect your body differently during weight loss, which may lead to initial weight loss plateaus or even brain fog if not managed properly.

Consulting with nutritionists and other health experts allows them to customize meal plans based on individual needs while providing valuable advice regarding the relationship with food, cravings management etc., giving yourself every opportunity to succeed!

Current Health / Medications

Before starting the keto diet, it’s important to consider your current health and any medications you may be taking.

Depending on your medical history, certain foods may cause unfavorable reactions or adverse effects with medication. Therefore, it is recommended that individuals consult with a medical professional before undertaking a new way of eating to ensure that the keto diet is right for them.

Additionally, individuals should be honest with their doctor about any dietary changes they make so that they can receive advice regarding how to adjust their medications as needed.

Keeping open communication between yourself and a medical professional will help maximize success on the keto diet while minimizing potential risks associated with changing dietary habits.

The Keto Flu

“When the going gets tough, the tough get going”. This saying rings true when it comes to starting a ketogenic diet. Many individuals who attempt this lifestyle change have experienced what is known as ‘The Keto Flu’.

To be prepared for such an experience and make sure you reach your goals on the path toward optimal health, here are 5 things that should be considered:

  • Replenishing electrolytes – Water weight loss can lead to dehydration and electrolyte imbalances, so it’s important to replenish these levels with potassium, magnesium, and sodium supplements.
  • Fuel source – Your body will need some time to adjust from using carbohydrates as its fuel source to using fat instead; making sure you’re consuming enough healthy fats is essential in order for your body to transition smoothly into ketosis.
  • Digestive issues – As many people switch their diets over night, digestive issues may arise due to a lack of fiber intake or increased fat intake. It’s important to take steps towards normalizing digestion by adding probiotics, and prebiotics and increasing water consumption.
  • Brain Health – Ketones become our main energy source while on a ketogenic diet which boosts brain function substantially but can also cause fatigue if not eating enough calories during the day. Eating high quality proteins like fish, poultry, and eggs helps ensure adequate nutrition throughout the day.
  • Detoxification process – The detoxification process caused by supplementing with certain herbs can help reduce symptoms related to The Keto Flu like nausea, dizziness, or headaches.

Being aware of these common side effects associated with transitioning onto a keto diet allows us to better prepare ourselves for success along our journey towards improved overall health and wellbeing.

Risks And Side Effects

Now that you’re familiar with the keto flu, it’s time to look at some of the risks and side effects associated with starting a well-formulated ketogenic diet.

It’s important to remember that while low carb diets can be beneficial for many people, they may not work for everyone. There are known health conditions that require special consideration before beginning a keto diet such as kidney stones or other metabolic diseases.

Additionally, long term effects of following this type of regimen have yet to be studied in full detail so it’s best to proceed with caution.

Common side effects of a ketogenic diet may include nausea, constipation, headaches, and bad breath due to the increased production of acetone in the body. As your body adjusts to using fat for fuel instead of sugar, these symptoms should subside within 2-4 weeks after beginning the diet.

If any adverse reactions occur during your transition period be sure to talk with your doctor right away about switching back to a more traditional way of eating until you feel better.

It is also essential that anyone planning on transitioning into a ketogenic lifestyle gets educated first and understand what foods they need to consume in order to maximize their results while minimizing potential risks and side effects.

Starting out under the guidance of an experienced nutritionist or physician will help ensure that you get all of the necessary nutrients needed on this type of plan without compromising your overall health.

Preparing For Long-Term Success

So you’ve decided to take the plunge and start a keto diet. Congratulations!

You may be feeling ready for an incredible transformation, but before diving in head first, there are some key steps that should be taken in order to ensure long-term success.

First off, it’s important to consult with your doctor or health expert to make sure that the keto diet is right for you and won’t negatively impact any existing conditions.

Additionally, when making up your own personalized diet plan, round out meals with healthy fats such as olive oil and fish, while limiting carbs to no more than 50 grams each day.

Sticking closely to this ratio of macronutrients – high fat, moderate protein, and low carb – will help keep your body in a state of nutritional ketosis which is essential for weight loss on a ketogenic diet.

And don’t forget about heart health either; getting enough vitamins A and D from natural sources like salmon and eggs is critical for optimal well-being.

It can seem overwhelming at times trying to stick to a new lifestyle change so far away from what you’re used to eating every day.

That’s why enlisting the support of friends and family members can really go a long way towards helping reach goals faster by providing encouragement along the journey.

So get started today on preparing for long-term success on the keto diet – because tomorrow could just be too late!

Wrapping Up: Keto Considerations

It’s time to take the plunge and start your keto journey. While it may seem daunting at first, with a little preparation and guidance, you can make the transition easier on yourself. Symbolically speaking, this diet is like jumping into a swimming pool after being out of practice for years – there will be some bumps in the road before you adjust enough to swim confidently.

But just as I was able to get back into that pool, so too can you manage the keto diet successfully! With a strong understanding of macronutrient ratios and food selections, plus an adequate calorie intake and social support system in place, you’ll have all the tools necessary to complete your transformation. Plus if any unexpected side effects pop up along the way (the dreaded “keto flu”), don’t worry – follow my advice above for preparing long-term success and you should be alright.

So go ahead – dive right in! The world of keto awaits; let me help guide you through its waters safely and effectively.

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