How to Start Keto
I recently had a friend inquire about starting Keto. The fad aspect of this way of eating has created such a buzz in the media and lead to so much “information” being published that quite frankly there’s more confusion when searching the web for how to begin this journey and the “rules”. I read so much material initially that I wasn’t sure what to eat and why, until I found a few simple tips. Here is what I relayed to my friend and hopefully someone starting anew can find some grounding for the journey they are embarking on.
Just dive right in.
There is so much out in the Internet about keto “rules” and frankly you will be best to try to find what works for you with a few simple guidelines.
The First step is determining your macros. I like the calculator at Ruled.me
Next find a good tracking app for food journaling and macros lookup and use it. I have been happy with MyFitnessPal, but there are so many out there now. Find one that you like and that works for you, and just use it. Be warned that the default settings for MyFitnessPal as well as many others give daily guidance for the Standard American Diet. Use your keto calculator macros as your food guide.
I would suggest that you try to start at no more than 20 grams of carbs a day. This should be gross carbs. So folks will confuse the issue by subtracting fiber. Just shoot for 20, and don’t stress if you go over because you had too much broccoli or brussell sprouts.
You will want to check out a keto calculator to determine your protein amount. I have found the calculator at https://www.ruled.me/keto-calculator/ to be pretty good. You want to determine the amount of protein you should strive for in a day. Hit this goal every day, but try not to go over.
Take the fat grams from whatever calculator as a “up to suggestion”. For most of us who have a few pounds to lose, we’ve got plenty of fuel for our bodies to convert to ketone bodies. We use fats in our diet to round out our daily caloric needs as well as to make us feel satiated on this diet.
Put it together
To make this as simple as possible:
- Your carbs are a max limit (20 grams)
- Your protein is a goal to hit every day (mine is 110 grams)
- Use fat as you need it to feel satisfied.
“Keto Flu” Tip
In the first week or so, be careful of getting dehydrated. Drink plenty of water, as you body will be reducing fluid. Without the carbs, and more importantly the increasing insulin, your kidneys will also start flushing sodium (NA) and potassium (K), so I use Morton Lite Salt to replenish these two critical minerals. I have found this to help reduce the crappy feeling people generally refer to as the “Keto flu”.