Over 80 Tips and Advice for Starting the Keto LCHF or Low Carb Way of Life; How to Get Started and Keep Going! Encouraging and Motivating Thoughts. Practical Hints and Helpful Tips to Succeed.
This post is packed with short, easy to read bits meant for easy reading and understanding. They are purposely not put into large paragraphs with a lot of information for that reason. Over 80 Tips and Advice for Starting the Keto LCHF or Low Carb Way of Life is meant to come back to over and over. Read when you begin and as needed for encouragement and refreshing what you know to remind you of the path you are going. It is very good for me to periodically refresh my mind like this.
Disclaimer: I am not a Registered Dietitian, nurse, doctor, or health professional of any kind. My blog expresses my opinions, experiences, and information I have gathered and may not be right for everyone. Please consult a doctor or trained professional for medical advice.
Be prepared. Plan. Make lists. Make meals ahead and know what you will be eating next. It is much easier to succeed when you have good food ready to eat.
Track every single thing you eat or drink—BEFORE you eat or drink it to prevent discouraging surprises. Seasoning mixes, condiments and sauces, etc. can add up quickly or have carbs you didn’t realize. Carb Manager and My Fitness Pal are popular apps for tracking.
You will fail from time to time. Don’t let it totally derail you. Just get up and start again. It is just a blip in the radar. Just keep going!
Set your mind to succeed. If your mind is set, your body will follow.
Don’t give up. If you mess up, start over.
If possible, get bad foods out of the house. If you have a family still eating high carb foods, have your own drawer and/or shelf in the refrigerator and your own cabinet in the kitchen and keep them well stocked with good food for you. Make sure your family knows that those places are off limits to them. It is so discouraging to think you have prepared food set aside to stay on track and find someone else ate it! And remember that their shelves and spaces are off limits to you for you to succeed.
Set small goals with appropriate rewards (not food!). Lose 5 pounds 5 times. Lose 10 pounds 5 times. Lose 10 pounds 10 times. Whatever works for you!
You do not have to eat anything you don’t want to eat.
Eat the Keto/Low Carb foods you like and don’t force the ones you don’t (although it is good to try new things). If you don’t like avocados, don’t eat them! Eat other healthy fats that you do like.
Take one day, one meal, one hour at a time.
Not a diet but a WOL (Way of Life).
Do it for yourself.
If you fail, pick up and start again. Sometimes knowing you have to restart and go through Keto flu again will help stay on track.
It is OK to talk to yourself! Keep reminding yourself why you are doing this.
Get connected with someone else with the same goals. There are many Facebook groups to follow and be involved in every day or every hour if needed. Low Carb & Keto Recipes & Helpful Tips Group is a great one.
Make it a habit to eat this way. It DOES get easier but only if you make it a habit and keep going. It will be easier when you feel good eating this way and lose the intense desire for carbs and sugar (yes, I know that seems impossible when you are just starting but it really does happen!).
Don’t cheat. It only makes the cravings stronger that you have made progress on.
Don’t make it more difficult than it needs to be. Make the same protein and vegetables for the whole family and just add a side of carbs for them that you will not eat.
Take your own food or drink to events if necessary.
There is no food that is worth not feeling well or being fat.
Drink enough water.
Before starting, take pictures and measurements along with weight. These will often be a much more accurate showing of your progress than the scale.
Don’t weigh too often. It is very tempting but can be discouraging to see each normal fluctuation of a pound or 2 in the wrong direction. It will even out and if you only weigh every week or better, every month, you will not be bothered with that. In a year, if you keep going, that small variation will not matter.
Look at how your clothes are fitting and how you are feeling instead of weighing every day.
Eat when you are hungry, just eat the right things. Stop when you are comfortably full. Portions do matter.
Eat when you are hungry; not just to be social, because you are bored, it is a habit (like in front of the TV) or the clock says a certain time.
Cravings will go away IF you don’t feed them.
Carry low carb foods with you. Don’t get caught hungry and unprepared.
Learn to read labels. Packages are sneaky buggers but the ingredients and nutrition labels tell the real story. Don’t go by the front of the package that says “Keto” or whatever other health claim they may spout.
No one forces you to eat. You are in charge of what goes into your mouth!
Don’t cheat; you are only cheating YOU and it really isn’t worth it anyway.
You may start off with a large weight loss (yay!) and then taper down to much less per week. You may even lose nothing the second week. OR the third! You may even gain a bit back. It is ok (I know it doesn’t seem like it). Your body is adjusting and it will all even out. Even if you don’t lose anything the first or second week, trust the process. In many people, their body needs to do some healing before it can lose weight. Don’t give up just before that happens!
No excuses! Lose your excuses, find your results.
Collect recipes. Here is a great start! Over 200 Low Carb & Keto Recipes
Don’t stress. No one is perfect.
It’s not a race.
Be willing to make adjustments. Everyone is different.
Ask Google, “How many carbs in. . . “
Print out your goals. Keep them where you will see them.
Change the way you think about food.
Don’t make a big deal out of the changes. Don’t over think and stress. Just start doing it.
Find a way to be accountable. Find a buddy. Join Facebook groups to get good support and daily ideas, recipes and tips. Low Carb & Keto Recipes & Helpful Tips Group is a great one.
Don’t get overwhelmed with the big picture (I can’t ever eat “that” again). Just do one good choice at a time.
Whatever you are craving, there is probably a low carb/Keto version. Google/Pinterest will help! OR Don’t feed the cravings and they WILL go away. Your tastes will change.
It gets easier!
Don’t compare your results with others. You are you and no one else. Age, genetics, overall health, how much weight you have to lose, etc., etc., all vary from person to person. This is your journey. And look at it his way; if you have 30 pounds to lose and lost 2 pounds your first week, don’t feel like you did less than someone who has 100 pounds to lose and lost 5 pounds her first week. You actually lost MORE because you lost 1/15 of what you needed and she lost 1/20 of what she needed! See? Don’t compare. Both did great!
Don’t dwell on what you can’t have; enjoy what you can have. Make a list of the delicious low carb foods that you love.
It may not happen as fast as you want but it WILL happen and you are so much better than if you didn’t do it at all.
Some success is better than none.
Calculate net carbs. Even if you hate math, you can do this! Take the total carbs and subtract fiber. That gives you net carbs and really helps, especially with vegetables. (Some also subtract sugar alcohols or half of some and all of others. That is variable and we won’t get into that here.)
Focus on loving the food you need to eat, not what you can’t have. Make a list of the foods you can have and love. Focus on these foods, not what you can’t have.
Picture yourself doing or wearing things that you can’t do or wear now.
Don’t say, “I can’t eat that”. Say, “I don’t eat that” or “I choose not to eat that”.
Eat enough fat.
Keep your electrolytes up; pickle juice, broth, salt, magnesium. Almonds and Avocados are a great snack to provide potassium and magnesium naturally.
Find a few recipes that you love and keep eating them.
Beware of artificial sweeteners. Many are high on the GI scale and can kick you out of ketosis and raise blood sugar levels, which stalls weight loss. Check out this chart of sweeteners, especially noting Maltodextrin and even Malitol. They are in many of our packaged “Keto” products!
When going to a restaurant, look at the menu online before you go and decide what you will have. No last minute pressure that way.
It is not hard.
It does take some effort.
It is worth doing.
Remind yourself of why you need to do this; Make a list of 5-10 things you want to accomplish or can do by being your future, healthier, lighter self. These may be things you no longer have to deal with. Whenever you have the urge to cheat, review the list. Are any of those things worth the food item you are thinking about?
Intermittent fasting is a great tool to lose weight and lower blood glucose levels. It can be done at any time but it is much easier several months after being in ketosis when you are fat adapted and naturally not as hungry. You will easily find yourself skipping breakfast and stretching times between meals. Diet Doctor has a great article all about Intermittent Fasting here.
Realize that just because something says it has 0 carbs for 1 Tbsp (or 1 tsp) that it doesn’t mean there are 0 carbs if you eat a cup of it. Heavy whipping cream is a good example of this.
Avoid grains. Yes, they make “Keto” and Low Carb wraps, breads, biscuit mix, etc but especially if you are just starting, you are much better off without grains. You will make better progress without them.
You can do this.
Everything that goes into your mouth is YOUR choice.
Keep it simple. The more complicated it is, the easier it will be to fail.
Don’t go crazy buying all of the special ingredients for substitution recipes. Keep it simple at first. It will help your wallet and your cravings and will keep you from feeling overwhelmed. Just stick with some basic recipes or even better, basic foods like bacon and eggs, chicken and vegetables, salad with steak, etc.
Variety; don’t get bored.
Don’t get overwhelmed with the big picture (I can’t ever eat “that” again). Just do one good choice at a time.
Focus on the health benefits, increase in energy, decrease in weight, all of the positives.
Sometimes it works well to just start by eliminating obvious carbs; pasta, rice, potatoes, bread, grains, oatmeal, soft drinks, sugar, etc and often you can get a good start on some weight loss and health benefits from just doing that. As time goes on, it is usually necessary to count macros (carbs, protein and fat). Ketoconnect.com has a great calculator to help you get started.
Remember: carbs are a limit—don’t go over carbs. Protein is a goal—you should have that much protein. Fat is a lever—if you need to lose, you want the lower end of your fats; you don’t need to “get your fats in” but do eat enough to be satisfied and not hungry. If you are maintaining your weight or eating Keto for medical reasons, you will need more.
Don’t be afraid of fat.
Do watch portions. We still can’t overeat and expect to lose. (Again, tracking is very helpful.)
Expect carb/sugar withdrawals and it won’t be pleasant! But embrace it as part of getting healthy and the beginning of a new you. You will come out on the other side so much better!
Be patient and keep with it. You ate junk for xx years and it won’t be fixed in a week or a month. It can be fixed though!
If you realize you are doing something wrong (whoa, gummy vitamins have carbs?!?!)(yes), just brush it off and keep going. You are still making progress.
You don’t need to buy Ketones. Your body will make them for free in just a few days.
Don’t cheat; that flavor or feeling is a memory now that you want. Five minutes after you eat it, it will be a memory again and you will have the guilt of eating it. The pleasure will be over and the carbs will be in your body again. It is not worth it! Repeat as necessary!
If Over 80 Tips and Advice for Starting the Keto LCHF or Low Carb Way of Life was helpful to you, you will also like 124 Motivational Quotes for Eating Right with free printables.