Although most people start the diet to lose weight, it’s rare to experience sudden weight gain on keto after carbs are cut off. This may be highly discouraging and even disappointing.
While many would believe that it is difficult to gain weight while on keto, there are actually several potential explanations. Sudden weight gain on keto can occur for various reasons, some of which are not as obvious as you would think and some might even be out of your control, biologically speaking.
If you are in a situation where you have recently started a keto diet and are gaining weight instead of losing weight, this article will take you through the potential causes and how you can remedy them.
CAUSES OF WEIGHT GAIN ON A KETO DIET
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TOO MUCH PROTEIN
One cause of sudden weight gain on keto would be the consumption of excessive amounts of protein. Protein is expected to make up about one-fifth of your total calories while on Keto.
In certain cases, you can bump up the protein. It’s necessary, however, not to overdo it.
If the protein is more than one-third of your calories, it won’t be easy to remain in ketosis.
Remedy: If you’re eating steak, make sure it’s a fat steak like a ribeye. If you eat eggs, cook them in butter, and so on.
If all the protein you consume has a job to do, less will be converted to glucose by gluconeogenesis, giving the protein a job by doing weight-bearing exercises and building muscle.
One major critique of the keto diet is that it always places low-carb above high-nutrition. For example, bacon and diet sodas put the thumbs on Keto.
However, these and other keto-friendly foods are heavily refined and very unhealthy. This may result in sudden weight gain on keto.
Remedy: It is important to select whole foods and minimally processed foods on this diet. It will help to remain in ketosis and prevent weight gain from harmful ingredients such as salt and artificial sweeteners.
TOO MANY CALORIES
Some people eat so many calories and don’t think that will affect their body weight. It’s essential to note that no matter what sort of diet you’re pursuing if you’re consuming too many calories, you’re going to gain weight.
It doesn’t matter if these calories come from carbs, fat, or protein; the body will be vulnerable to sudden weight gain on keto when there’s an energy surplus.
Remedy: You’ve still got to keep carbs under 50g a day. This is a more practical approach for the long term.
The normal diet lowers carbs to 50g to 150g. That said, it’s still necessary to have carbs counted.
Your three square meals and 1-2 snacks should always be less than 50g of carbs to help you stay in ketosis.
SLIPPING OUT OF KETOSIS
There are several explanations for why this is happening. The key ones are high-carb or low-fat.
Remedy: The ketogenic diet’s main aim is to get into ketosis and remain in a metabolic state. However, if you keep getting kicked out of ketosis, you’re going to get the energy from carbohydrates and make sudden weight gain on keto plausible.
Also, keep track of your ketones by measuring them using urine strips or a breath meter to be sure that you are always in ketosis.
It’s one of those Keto-friendly ingredients that is a question mark and can result in sudden weight gain on keto.
Remedy: If you want to avoid weight gain, you should choose your sugar alcohol carefully. Maltitol, for example, is one that can raise blood sugar levels.
That, on the other hand, can knock you out of ketosis. Minimally processed stevia and monk fruit are safer alternatives.
LACK OF ENOUGH SLEEP
It may not seem to have anything to do with sudden weight gain on keto. Several studies have shown that both high-stress and low sleep will affect weight loss.
Another consideration is that the hunger hormones may be affected. It could cause you to have more snack attacks during the day.
If you eat high-calorie/carb food, it can cause blood sugar spikes and kick you out of ketosis.
Remedy: The solution for this quite complex and therefore would recommend the Sleep Smarter book by Shawn Stevenson
This is possibly one of the least recognized causes of weight gain. If you have conditions such as overactive thyroid, it can cause sudden weight gain on keto.
Other medical conditions can increase weight gain. Another often ignored aspect is the medications that people are taking to treat these conditions.
They may also trigger weight gain.
Remedy: The solution here would be to talk to an endocrinologist to inform yourself about the issue and find possible solutions.
HIGH ALCOHOL INTAKE
Many alcoholic beverages, such as beers and wine, are very high in carbohydrates. There is some controversy as to whether regular drinking will bring health benefits.
There are, however, several ways in which it can induce sudden weight gain on keto.
Remedy: Light beer, sparkling wine and white liquor are the better choices or avoid alcohol altogether.
LITTLE OR NO EXERCISE
A mixture of diet and exercise is the safest way to lose weight. Most health experts believe that weight loss is around one-quarter of physical activity.
Remedy: It is necessary to do a decent amount of cardio/weight-resistance exercise. It will help you use stored blood sugar to get into ketosis quicker and prevent sudden weight gain on keto.
TRADING FAT FOR MUSCLE
If you’re doing many weight-bearing workouts, you could be putting your muscles on faster than losing your fat.
Remedy: Keep exercising and let the body find out what it wants to do for itself. Remember to measure your waist, hips, chest, and arms and keep track of how your body shifts.
CAN YOU BE IN KETOSIS AND STILL GAIN WEIGHT?
Most people go crazy with their fat intake while on a keto diet, and that’s why they attain ketosis but still gain weight. Since fats contain twice as many calories as carbs and proteins, you need to be careful about the amount of fat you consume.
Being in ketosis also helps you to eat a much higher amount of fat than you’re used to because you’re using fat as an energy source to get through your day. Of course, the quality of fat is important, and it is also important to maintain a caloric deficit if weight loss is your target.
Sudden weight gain on keto can result from increased water retention to muscle gain. When you’re overeating, there’s a fair chance that weight gain is temporary and there’s nothing to think about.
If you ever feel like you do not lose weight on keto after controlling calorie intake and handling stress, it might be time to take a break from dieting. A diet break can do a lot to alleviate stress and dietary adaptation while offering a psychological break.