4 Top Tips for Transitioning off Keto without Gaining Weight
Ashley Gonzalez started her weight loss journey in January by kicking things off with the Ketogenic diet. Things were going well, until her weight loss came to a halt even though she still hadn’t reached her weight loss goals. If you’re no longer losing weight following Keto, or you’re finding it impossible to sustain, then it’s time to come off it. But that doesn’t mean you can immediately start eating bread again! Sorry. The reintroduction of carbohydrates to your diet should be done slowly so that you can successfully transition off Keto without gaining weight.
Top 4 Tips for Transitioning off Keto
Although Keto might have been helpful in initiating your weight loss, the ketogenic diet is not a long-term diet plan that is typically recommended unless trying to manage an acute medical condition. When carbohydrates are restricted from our diet, our bodies miss out on abundance of vitamins and minerals that are ordinarily provided by fruits and vegetables. Not only that, but carbohydrates are our bodies primary source of fuel in anaerobic performance. They also happen to be most people’s favorite food group ☺️ How many birthday parties have you been to with Keto cake or snacks? How easy is it to find something to eat on a menu at ANY restaurant when you’re on the keto diet? Answer: It’s not!
So transitioning to eating normally and in a way that is much more sustainable is inevitable if you’re doing Keto.We know it can be scary, but it is possible to go from the ketogenic diet to eating carbohydrates again without experiencing some of the common symptoms:
- weight gain
- bloating & bathroom difficulties
- blood sugar spikes
- increased hunger and sugar addiction
Of course, the scale may reflect some weight gain because carbohydrates contain water, so you’re body will naturally be carrying around more water weight. However, body fat gain and the other symptoms people commonly experience are avoidable if you follow these simple tips.
1. Add Carbohydrates Slowly
Going from less than 20grams of carbohydrates a day to 150 grams overnight, is not advisable! Your body needs to adjust slowly to avoid gaining weight. You’ll want to start by adding one extra serving of carbohydrates a day for a week. On week two, you can add two servings a day. Continue this way for a few weeks until you reach a balance of carbs that feels good for your body. Usually this is about 40% of your total calories. Don’t forget, at the same time as you’re adding in carbohydrates, you’ll need to be gradually reducing your fat intake too. Your final split of macronutrients might look like 40% carbohydrates, 30% fat and 30% protein.
2. Avoid processed and packaged foods
As you begin to add carbohydrates back in, staying clear of highly processed foods is definitely recommended. Choose primarily vegetables and fruits as they will provide your body with an abundant source of antioxidants, phytonutrients and fiber. As well as fruits and veggies, whole grains, beans and legumes are good choices to include. Essentially, you’ll want to be following a Paleo style diet for about 2 weeks.
3. Eat Balanced Meals
The best way to keep your blood sugar levels in check and avoid any surges or crashes in energy, is to eat a balanced meal. If you were following Keto correctly, then you were most likely keeping track of your food in a food diary app. You’ll want to continue to do that. We use MyFitnessPal which is great because you can see the percentage breakdown of each of your meals. Build your meals around that 40-30-30 percentage split and you’ll be eating a well-balanced meal. Now make sure your calories are well dispersed throughout the day. A general recommendation on the number of meals to eat in a day, is somewhere between 3-6 meals and 1-2 snacks a day depending on your schedule and training.
4. Continue to Workout
If you were working out while you were doing Keto then continue to do so. It’s important that you maintain your body’s activity and daily exertion. If you stopped training whilst you were doing Keto or you’re not already following a physical fitness program, that’s OK too. As you transition from Keto to flexible dieting you will probably find that you have an abundance of extra energy. Use it! Try to move a little bit every day. Do some yoga, go for a long walk with a friend or ride your bike to the store. Our bodies like to move!
Keto to Flexible Dieting – Real Life Experience
Read on to find out more about our client Ashley’s real life experience of getting off Keto and switching to flexible dieting with the Own Your Eating program.
When did you start Flexible Eating & how did you get started?
I took the leap in transitioning from keto to flexible eating starting April of this year (2019). I bought the monthly Lifestyle Essential Membership and was given Laura Daniel as my coach. I have loved working with her!
What prompted you to get started?
Being strict clean keto wasn’t allowing me to perform well in the gym. It was leaving me tired and fatigued… I knew I needed carbs, I just didn’t know how to go about transitioning off Keto and how many carbs I should be eating.
How much weight have you lost?
Since we’ve been slowly reintroducing carbs, I’ve managed to bust through my weight loss plateau and lose another 3 lbs. in just under a month.
What other changes have you noticed in your body or in general?
Don’t even get me started on the energy increase! …. I can wear myself out in an intense workout and as I’m walking out the gym I will still get bursts of energy and feel like I can go again! It’s crazy!
My measurements are definitely going down. I’m super happy that my transition from keto to flexible dieting hasn’t made me gain weight or bloat!
I currently have less than 10 items of clothing that fit. Which is the ONLY down fall I can find so far ? lol.
What has been your biggest obstacle that you have overcome or are working on?
The first week I had a hard time eating carbs again. And being consistent with my numbers was a struggle too. But it was short lived and I managed to commit!
What’s the one thing you previously would have deprived yourself of on a diet that you now get to enjoy guilt-free?
Hmmm what doesn’t keto deprive you of?! ? Hahaha. OK obviously you can have all the fat, but I am just so happy to not feel restricted in any way anymore. I can have a social life again without food anxiety!
What’s one piece of advice you would give someone that is just getting started?
Consistency is key!
Congratulations Ashley! Your persistence and commitment to your goals is inspiring! ?? Keep up the amazing work! ??
Getting off Keto – The Takeaway
Although the Ketogenic diet can provide some short-term benefits, it’s not commonly recommended as a long-term diet. The mental sense of restriction combined with the prolonged period of vitamin & mineral suppression does not support our holistic concept of a healthy lifestyle. The good news is, it is possible to transition from Keto back to a life of eating carbohydrates and other foods you enjoy in moderation! Follow our top 4 tips for transitioning off keto and get the support you need with one of our experienced coaches. We’re here to take away any doubt or fears you might have about taking this step.