The keto diet is easier to maintain than a calorie-restricted diet, because the cravings and hunger pangs are suppressed. You will also feel fitter and can concentrate better, among other things.
However, it is not a panacea as some would have you believe.
Thus, It is very important to set realistic and achievable goals to make yourself discipline. Moreover, when you know in advance what to expect, the small setbacks will not stop you from your new lifestyle or even quitting.
So no surprises, or BS, learn what’s the average weight loss you should expect in the first weeks, and long-term.
How much weight can you lose in a week on keto?
When the body is not using glucose for fuel that’s stored in your muscles as glycogen (each gram of glycogen retains two to three grams of water).
And you stop eating carbohydrates, or limit them as with the keto diet, you will spare your body from glycogen. Then, your stock will be used up in the first week. An average body stores 350 to 500 grams of glycogen. This equates to about 3 pounds of weight which’s a significant amount that can be lost.
In the first week, do not stare blindly at the counter of the scale. Weight is by no means everything and can fluctuate. Better to focus on your nutritional schedule and stick to it strictly.
Keto diet long-term weight loss
After the first week, the real work begins. The pounds you are losing now are mainly body fat. Also, the results vary on several health factors and different for everyone.
An average weight loss while on keto is 1 pound to 2 pounds per week. That may not sound like a lot, especially when you are bombarded with all kinds of marketing tricks that promise to shed pounds in a few days.
This is why many people drop out in the second or third week, they expect to be able to continue with the results of week 1.
Set realistic goals
By setting realistic and achievable goals, we therefore increase the chance of maintaining our new lifestyle. But which goals are achievable and realistic? And what if we want to lose weight even faster?
You have probably heard of so-called calories (kcal). A calorie is a unit of energy. You have to burn about 7000 kcal more than you use to lose 2 pounds of fat. That is why it is important to know how much energy your body uses per day. This depends, among other things, on your weight, gender and how busy you are throughout the day. Someone who does a lot of sports or an active job will logically burn more energy than someone without exercise and an office job.
How to accelerate weight loss results?
When we know how much kcal we use per day to provide our body with energy, we can decide how much weight we want to lose. Suppose your body needs 3200 kcal per day to maintain the same weight. We call this number the calorie requirement or maintenance.
Because we know that a 2 pounds of fat equals about 7000kcal, we can make an easy calculation to determine how many kcal we can eat per day. To lose two pounds of fat every week, we would therefore have to eat 7000 kcal per week under maintenance, or 1000 kcal per day.
Look at your weekly totals and not so much at whether every day is perfect. If you are 800 under one day and 1200 the other, this is of course fine. As long as your average per day is only around 1000 kcal under maintenance.
Scientific research on keto
Indeed, scientific research shows that the ketogenic diet gives better results on weight loss, compared to other the low fat diets (2) .
In addition, studies show high-fat protein diets reduce hunger (3), appetite and therefore daily calorie intake.
An American study published in June 2016 (4) showed that a low-carbohydrate diet can maintain a state of fullness longer than a low-fat diet.
Another US study published in 2003 (5) shows that obese people lost 2.2 times more weight on a ketogenic diet than on a low fat diet.
Even though we all want to lose weight quickly, unfortunately we have to accept that this is not possible. What we can do is adjust our expectations so that we can achieve our end goal with success, and no surprises.