Perhaps dealing with a weight loss plateau has frequently happened, making it very challenging to stay on a diet. Even though experiencing a weight loss plateau can still happen while on the keto diet, it’s much easier to get back to losing weight compared to other diets. As a keto newbie, it’s vital to learn all that one can before going on the diet. Being prepared that hitting a plateau is possible down the road helps people set realistic expectations. Even if that should happen, over time, as we talk about in the Body Reboot book, it is possible for people to sustain a low carb diet without gaining their weight back. After crushing those goals people on the keto diet can have a new stable weight after losing a significant amount of weight. Now, let’s learn a few ways to overcome a weight loss plateau, if and when it happens.
1. Drink more water before meals
It sounds easy enough, but you’d be surprised to learn how many people forget to drink water before and after meals. In particular, Eat This, Not That recommends drinking more water before a meal. Doing this can fill up your belly and help you eat less!
And speaking of H2O, be sure to drink the stuff before meals, advises registered dietitian nutritionist Elisa Zied, MS, RD, CDN. “A glass or two before a meal can help you fill up and curb overall calorie intake.”
Science backs Zeid’s claim: According to research presented at a meeting of the American Chemical Society, study subjects who sipped two cups of water before sitting down to a meal consumed 75 to 90 fewer calories. Over a 12-week period, dieters who followed the strategy three times per day lost about 5 pounds more than dieters who didn’t increase their water intake.
2. Eat fewer carbs
This tip may sound like a no brainer, but as Virta Health points out, there are hidden carbs everywhere. Not only that, but sugary desserts may be calling your name. If that happens and you give in don’t punish yourself. Think of alternatives to sugary snacks and make the diet work for you. You can do it!
The many benefits of carbohydrate restriction, including weight loss, can be achieved when carbohydrate intake is maintained under your tolerance (or carb threshold) to control blood sugar and insulin levels. There are plenty of ways for total carb intake to creep up. Some are obvious, but others aren’t.
The obvious sources of overconsumption of carbs:
Starchy side dishes, sugary desserts, and more. The list of carbs to avoid may be obvious, but if it’s sometimes a struggle to stay true to your low carb lifestyle, this may be a reason for the stall on the scale.
Bites of things ‘here and there.’ Sure, you’re no longer eating cereal for breakfast or pasta as a side dish (WIN!), but do you occasionally have just a little taste of the dessert at a dinner party or order the breaded chicken and ‘try’ to scrape it all off? Do these occurrences happen often enough that it could be contributing to a weight loss plateau?
The not-so-obvious sources of overconsumption of carbs:
Low carb alternatives. You may have swapped out all high carb foods with low carb alternatives, like almond flour for wheat flour and zucchini noodles for wheat noodles, but it’s still very easy to eat too many carbs from these alternatives.
Nuts, non-starchy vegetables, and other low-carb foods. Carbs can add up from nuts, cheese, sour cream, avocado, and even vegetables. Consuming carbohydrates, even from low carb foods, above your personal tolerance can contribute to your weight loss plateau. Take a closer look at just how many carbs are in all of your foods.
Hidden carbs, especially when dining out. Carbs in condiments can be an easy way to consume a spoonful of sugar. To avoid this trap, carefully read the labels of sauces or avoid them altogether–flavorings, dressings, marinades, and other condiments. Be also cautious of thickeners–flour, corn starch, and other high carb items are commonly-used ingredients to thicken soups and sauces.
3. Switch to tea instead of coffee
Coffee drinkers may think this impossible, but Eat This, Not That says they should give tea a go! Why on earth would you switch to tea when you LOVE coffee? Well, coffee may be preventing you from losing weight. Switch to tea, and you might see the results you’ve been missing.
Your coffee habit may be stalling your weight loss progress. An Australian research team found that when mice consumed more than five cups of java a day, it led to increased belly fat storage. On the flip side, a different study found that subjects who combined 5 cups of green tea with 3 hours of exercise per week, lost 2 more pounds than their non-tea-drinking counterparts, The Daily News reports.
What makes green tea help with a diet plateau? It contains fat-blasting compounds called catechins, that chisel away at belly fat by revving the metabolism then speeding up the liver’s fat burning capacity. Making the switch from coffee to green tea may be just what your body needs to get back on track toward weight loss success—why not give it a go? You’ve got nothing to lose… But weight!
4. Eat more almonds
Almonds are a filling, yummy snack. Eat This, Not That suggests eating more almonds not only to fill up your tummy but also help you burn more fat!
Want to get more out of your weight loss workout? Fuel your session with almonds, one of the best proteins for weight loss. The tear-shaped nut is rich in the amino acid L-arginine, which can actually help you burn more fat and carbs during workouts, accelerating your weight loss wins, according to a Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition report.
A study by the Journal of International Society of Sports Nutrition Report also supports Eat This, Not That’s statements about almonds. Almonds are very nutrient-dense and also help people perform better during exercise. See what we mean by reading a summary of their study below:
Almonds are a healthy tree nut food with high nutrient density. Their consumption has been shown to ameliorate oxidative stress, inflammation, etc. The objective of the study was to examine the effect of almonds on elements of endurance exercise performance in trained athletes.
A 10-week crossover, placebo controlled study was conducted. Eight trained male cyclists and two triathletes were randomly assigned to consume 75 g/d whole almonds (ALM) or isocaloric cookies (COK) with equal subject number. They consumed the assigned food for 4 wks and then the alternate food for another 4 wks. They underwent 3 performance tests including 125-min steady status exercise (SS) and 20-min time trial (TT) on an indoor stationary trainer at the start of the study (BL) and at the end of each intervention phase. Venous blood was collected in the morning prior to the performance test for biochemical measurements and finger blood during the test for glucose determination. Carbohydrate and fat oxidation, energy expenditure, and oxygen use were calculated using respiratory gas analysis.
ALM increased cycling distance during TT by 1.7 km as compared BL (21.9 vs. 20.2 km, P = 0.053) and COK increased 0.6 km (20.8 vs. 20.2 km, P > 0.05). ALM, but not COK, led to higher CHO and lower fat oxidation and less oxygen consumption during TT than BL (P < 0.05), whereas there was no significant difference in heart rate among BL, ALM and COK. ALM maintained higher blood glucose level after TT than COK (P < 0.05). ALM had higher vitamin E and haemoglobin and lower serum free fatty acid (P < 0.05), slightly elevated serum arginine and nitric oxide and plasma insulin (P > 0.05) than BL, and a higher total antioxidant capacity than COK (P < 0.05).
Whole almonds improved cycling distance and the elements related to endurance performance more than isocaloric cookies in trained athletes as some nutrients in almonds may contribute to CHO reservation and utilization and effective oxygen utilization. The results suggest that almonds can be incorporated into diets of those who undertake exercise training for performance improvement.
5. Eat enough protein
Ruled.me explains how eating protein is one of the main reasons you stay full on the keto diet and the reason why is because protein can help you continue to lose weight. However, don’t allow protein to replace fat. Eat enough fat, and you should naturally end up eating protein too (such as getting both fat and protein via fatty meats).
Regardless of what kind of diet you are on, eating the right amount of protein is essential. If you don’t eat enough protein, then you will lose more muscle mass, experience more hunger, and your daily energy expenditure will decrease. As a result, you will lose less weight than expected, struggle with cravings, plateau sooner, and won’t look as good as you’d like.
Overeating protein, however, is also not helpful for keto dieting. This is because the excess protein will cause a decrease in ketone production and increase your reliance on sugar burning.
When you eat the right amount of protein, you will be able to maintain lean muscle mass as you lose fat while simultaneously increasing your fat burning capacity and ketone levels. You may also be able to break through your plateau and keep future weight loss plateaus at bay.
With that being said, what exactly is the “right” amount of protein that you should eat every day?
Well, it depends, but here are some general recommendations:
If you exercise, protein levels should be hovering around 0.8g – 1.0g protein per pound of lean body mass a day. This helps with muscle mass retention and growth.
If you lift weights and want to gain muscle mass, then increase your protein intake to around 1.0g – 1.2g of protein per pound of lean body mass per day.
If you are not exercising, your protein intake should not be as high. Eating around 0.6g – 0.8g of protein per pound of lean body mass is going to be fine.
So there you have it. Even if you have to deal with a weight loss plateau in the future, we’ve got you covered! Read our the Body Reboot book and learn all about the keto diet and why it’s a great diet to stick to not only for short term but long term as well. Help us cover shipping and visit this page to snag a free copy today!
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