Everyone loses weight differently, and that’s especially the case for women. Some women may have a harder time losing weight, whereas a man may lose weight quickly. While it can get frustrating seeing a significant other or friend lose weight, whereas the weight on someone else is refusing to budge, it’s essential not to throw in the towel. Check out the Body Reboot book to learn about the keto diet, which is a high fat, low carb diet that is helping men and women everywhere lose weight and keep it off. As a woman, it’s encouraging to know there’s a diet that can lead to weight loss. More than just losing weight, it can also help you feel healthier while fighting off diseases such as a heart attack and stroke.
Perfect Keto recommends slowly limiting your carbs, as opposed to taking them all away at once. It’s going to be harder on your body if you cut down to a minimal amount of carbs right away. Slowly ease into the keto diet, and you might have a better time staying with the diet.
Unlike dudes who can decide to start a keto diet any random day and go from 300g of daily carbs in the Standard American Diet (SAD) to 25g, women need a little more time to adjust as we discussed.
If you haven’t started a keto diet yet, begin by tracking your regular food intake.
This will not only give you practice for measuring your food and tracking your macros in keto, it will also give you an average carb baseline for your body.
Let’s say you’re a typical American gal eating 250g of carbs per day.
Though you’ll get into ketosis faster the fewer carbs you eat, it doesn’t take drastic measures to find success.
When 24 women followed a low carb diet for eight weeks, they lost an average of 19 pounds and experienced significant reductions in their blood sugar levels, insulin resistance, triglycerides and free testosterone levels by simply limiting their net carbs to 70g per day[*].
That shows you don’t have to stay under 25g right off the bat to see results. Try this blueprint to ease your hormones into low-carb living:
Week one of your keto diet should begin with a goal of no more than 150g of daily net carbs. See if you can finish this first week somewhere near a daily 100g mark.
On week two of your keto diet, do the same thing; start around 100g early in the week and end close to 50g per day.
By the third week you’ll be well on your way to the under 25g zone and near or in ketosis.
This gradual carb reduction will let your body adjust and adapt while you see what life is like with fewer carbs. Just make sure to listen to your body.
If you’re feeling tired, unable to finish your workouts and hungry often, you may need to add a few more carbs to your day until you’re fat adapted.
According to the Bulletproof Blog, using a food tracker is the way to go. While on keto, you can write down how many carbs are in certain foods and keep track of how many carbs you are eating daily. Over time you’ll learn what you should be leaving behind and what you want to “spend” your carbs on that day.
Use a food tracker. Keto diet specialist and certified nutritionist Carole Freeman says that when people gain or stop losing weight, it’s typically because they’re not actually measuring and tracking their food. “They’re guesstimating. Or they’re eating keto food and assume however much they’re eating is okay,” she says.
Suzanne Ryan, best-selling author of Simply Keto recommends using a fitness tracker, such as My Fitness Pal, to keep tabs on your macros. “It can be helpful to track, even just for a week or two, to see if things are sneaking in that might have more carbs than you think or are kicking you out of ketosis,” she says.
Eating more alkaline foods can counteract unwanted weight loss side effects. Or, at least that’s the advice that Dr. Axe offers. Foods that have alkaline can help you feel better and ensure you’re getting proper nutrients in your diet.
How exactly can women eat a diet that is both alkaline and allows them to stay in ketosis? Are there any foods on the keto food list to avoid eating even though they are technically “low carb”?
Dr. Cabeca feels it’s critical to add in plenty low-carb alkalizing choices (fruits and veggies) to a ketogenic diet for optimal benefits and prevention of side effects. She especially recommends nutrient-dense foods like avocado and dark, leafy greens.
Here is a list of no-carb to moderately low-carb foods that women (and men, too) can include in an alkaline keto diet:
Greens like kale, chard, beet greens, dandelion, spinach, wheat grass, alfalfa grass, etc.
Other non-starchy veggies or herbs like mushrooms, tomatoes, avocado, radishes, cucumber, jicama, broccoli, oregano, garlic, ginger, green beans, endive, cabbage, celery, zucchini and asparagus.
Ideally try to consume a good portion of your produce raw or only lightly cooked (such as steamed), as raw foodscan help supply high levels of alkalizing minerals
Add in other superfoods like maca, spirulina, sea veggies, bone broth and green powder mixes that contain chlorophyll.
Healthy keto friendly fats like coconut oil, MCT oil or virgin olive oil. Fats found in wild-caught fish, grass-fed beef, cage-free eggs, nuts, seeds and organic grass-fed butter are also good additions to your diet.
Smaller amounts of starchy plants like sweet potato, turnips and beets can also included in the diet, although these should typically be kept to lower amounts due to containing more sugar and carbs.
If possible, try to consume alkaline water. Alkaline water has a pH of 9 to 11, making it a better option than tap water or purified bottled water that more acidic.
To reduce your intake of toxins and chemicals, it’s best to purchase organic produce whenever possible and to pay extra for grass-fed, free-range animal products. Plants that are grown in organic, mineral-dense soil tend to be more alkalizing and supply the most bang-for-your-buck.
While they might be okay every now and then, in general it’s not recommended to eat much fruit or high-carb veggies that taste very sweet in order to maintain ketosis. While working towards reaching a more alkaline, ketogenic state (ketosis), try to minimize or exclude these foods:
All sources of added sugar
Grains (even whole grains)
Most dairy products (sometimes small amounts of full-fat yogurt/kefir or cheese can be okay)
Try to only have eggs, lentils and nuts like peanuts in small amounts, since these are more acidic than other proteins. Avoid processed meats including cold cuts, or factory-farm raised meats, which promote acidity.
Other processed foods that contain lots of sodium, sugar, synthetic ingredients and fillers
As you lose weight and stay implementing healthy habits, aim for a healthy weight. Don’t get so caught up with your goal weight that you forget how important it is to stick to a healthy weight. If you lose weight, it may be harder to maintain it, so that’s part of the reason why Bulletproof Blog recommending having a healthy weight in mind.
“Understand that there’s happy weight instead of your ‘ideal weight,” Vogel adds. “If you have to fight tooth and nail to get to your ‘ideal weight’ it may not be worth the hassle and could be affecting your hormones. Instead, aim for a weight that’s easy to maintain on keto.” Generally, provided you aren’t too restrictive, keto is compatible with your hormones.
“If you stay the course with keto, eventually your hormones will be able to regulate, your brain will light up, your energy will improve, and you’ll feel more in sync with your body,” Vogel says.
A considerable weight loss sabotager for a woman is going through her time of the month. It’s easy for her to blow it from overeating chocolate or other snacks to ease her PMS symptoms. That’s why it’s so important to know what to eat to feed your PMS cravings. In the future, you can go for the keto-friendly snacks that won’t destroy your carb limit for the day.
We’re not all the same when it comes to PMS food cravings, but generally women around this time of the month dream of chocolate, carbs and high calorie junk food.
Luckily the Perfect Keto kitchen has you covered. Try one or more of these keto recipes for PMS when the storm hits:
Healthy Homemade Keto Chocolate Bars
Chocolate Keto Chia Pudding
Chocolate Mint Keto Ice Cream
Keto Chocolate Mug Cake
Keto Brownies with Peppermint Crunch
Chocolate Chip Keto Cookies
Chocolate Sea Salt Peanut Butter Bites
Crispy Kale Chips
Creamy Keto Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
Keto Jalapeño Poppers
Creamy Keto Spinach Artichoke Dip
Celeriac Everything Oven Fries
And by all means stay away from the scale before and during your period week for your mental and emotional health.
But try not to ignore the gym — exercise does help with cramps, after all.
If you’re still having trouble losing weight or if the keto diet has sent your hormones on an amusement park ride, it may be time to troubleshoot some of your hormonal problems. Kiss My Keto explains how to do that:
With that out of the way, here is how you can troubleshoot hormonal problems while going keto:
Eat more fat – Many problems on a keto diet are the result of not eating enough fat. Fat is your friend on keto; you absolutely need it to get enough energy and nutrients. If you don't keep your intake at the recommended levels, you'll put your body under immense stress and develop hormonal problems.
Eat more carbs – 30 grams of net carbs per day is enough to keep you in ketosis. However, you may need to eat more if you are highly active. Just make sure you are eating some carbs on keto to support normal thyroid functioning.
De-stress – Stress raises cortisol levels, and cortisol messes with your hormones and metabolism. When starting the keto diet, you need to keep stress at bay for the diet to work. Get 8 hours a sleep every day, try relaxation techniques, take long walks through the park, or listen to some relaxing music at the end of the day.
Exercise– Exercising enhances metabolic flexibility, which is your body's ability to switch to fat burning. It does so by increasing your muscle mass and muscles are efficient fat burners. This tip, obviously, applies if you're sedentary.
Maintain a healthy weight– Women need some amount of fat in their bodies for reproductive health. Generally, around 20-30 percent of body fat is the healthy range for most women. If you are underweight or have a low body fat percentage, then that could explain any menstrual irregularities you may be tackling.
Women can most definitely succeed on the keto diet, and we explain why this is the case in the Body Reboot book. You should get excited knowing there’s a diet out there that can help you reach your weight loss goals. Help us cover shipping and head over to this page to get a free copy so you can learn how to get started on your keto diet journey!
Sources: Perfect Keto, Dr. Axe, Bulletproof Blog, Kiss My Keto
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