5 Newbie Mistakes on Keto

Low Carb / Keto Resource

First and foremost, Happy New Year to all of the new low-carb, gluten-free, keto-ers!  As you can tell , I haven't posted at all last month. To be honest, I made a huge flopping fail during the month of December. I guess I just wanted to celebrate my birthday the entire month!

I'm now officially 24 (cue mid-twenties crisis) and I'm ready to jump back on the keto bandwagon.

Since it is the New Year, I thought I'd share with you the easy mistakes on keto that I made when first starting.  That way, you won't make the same ones that I did.

1. Eating low-fat foods

Yeah. Don't do it. I know that we've been told to avoid fat since we were children, but the time has come to smash that rule. Eat full fat cheese.  Eat that skin off of your chicken. Drown your broccoli in butter. Yes, all of it.

The only fats I would look into avoiding are vegetable oils like canola and corn. These oils don't help the body's inflammation at all when there are so many other, tastier options (like bacon grease, butter and coconut oil).

2. Not replacing electrolytes

On keto, you must drink a lot of water since it is dispelled so quickly.  When this happens, electrolytes are excreted through your urine and it's VERY important to replenish them. Use coconut water, low-sugar gatorade or my favorite - bone broth.  Using these will also significantly help with the keto flu.

3. Too many changes at once

This one is very important. Remember, you are a human.  Changing from a lifestyle of processed junk and no exercise to a completely keto and active lifestyle are opposite ends of the extremes. Choose one or the other to focus on first. You don't want to get burnt out in such a small amount of time.

4. Not giving fat adaption the time it takes

The first week will most likely leave you feeling like or producing a lot of shit. But give it time, it really works.  At first, your body isn't used to influx in fat and might cause diarrhea or constipation.  Over time it will regulate. For some people, fiber supplements help but they didn't help me at all because of my IBS. Do you have IBS? Check out this post.

Fat adaption can take up to a month until it actually happens.  Many people experience a burst in energy, feelings of euphoria and of course, fat loss. Your pee will start to smell and you might develop a very metallic taste in your mouth but don't be alarmed. IT'S WORKING.

5. Too much protein

You will find that in the beginning you will most likely drop a lot of weight (mostly water). At some point, your body will level off to roughly 1-2 pounds a week (depending on how much you have to lose) or you might actually stall and not lose anything.  If this is the case, I would definietely check on your protein intake.  Remember, on keto, fat is your main source of energy. You should be eating around 70% fat, 25% protein, and 5% carbs.

So there you have it! I hope these tips will prevent you from making some mistakes on keto. One of my resolutions was to post to my blog at least once a week, so be sure to check back for new posts and recipes!

Did you cheat over the holiday? Share below!

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54 Comments

  1. Pedro on October 28, 2017 at 2:43 am

    I’m just starting Keto and this post is awesome. Thank you!

  2. Jack on October 24, 2016 at 2:27 am

    When you’re fat adapted you don’t have a metallic taste in your mouth because your body makes ketones at the rate it consumes them. Acetone breath is pre-adaption, not post adaption. So if after a month you still have acetone breath you probably haven’t been in nutritional ketosis the whole time. 🙂

  3. Michelle on October 18, 2016 at 8:13 pm

    Are you still doing this ketogenic diet? Isn’t the high fat bad for your chlosterol levels and heart health?

    • Dominic on October 19, 2016 at 10:00 pm

      Nope, that was proven to be false! Saturated fat is healthy. It’s when it is combined with carbohydrates (especially wheat) that it becomes problematic!

  4. Lorren Cotton on August 11, 2016 at 5:43 am

    Can you drink sassy water on a keto diet? I’d hate to sabotage my ketosis unknowingly.

    • Dominic on September 22, 2016 at 2:00 pm

      I’m not familiar, can you elaborate?

  5. Kelsey on March 16, 2016 at 3:18 am

    Greetings!
    First off, your website is fantastic and is actually what convinced me that I need this diet in my life. That said, I have a few concerns and the internet seems to be confused or divided about my particular problem so Im hoping you can help! You see, I have been very strict paleo for years now. I lost nearly 70 lbs on it in combination with a spastic use of phentermine (doctor prescribed). My diet was essentially very VERY high protein, tons of low carb vegetables and absolutely no blatant carbs ever. I also was very pro low-fat anything, especially meat. So Im about a week and a half into Keto and I’m becoming worried that I am being “Regina George-d” (see Mean Girls- Kalteen Bar “diet”). Essentially, I have gained SIX pounds this week. Something I’d normally expect if I had thrown paleo out the window and cheated like crazy…. So my question is, is this normal? I fear that, if for some reason this never works, I’ll have gained a million pounds by the time I realize it. HELP! ( P.S. My Ketone test strips are somewhere in the middle of the chart, if that helps.)
    Thanks!

    • Dominic on April 28, 2016 at 2:16 am

      Are you eating too much? You can still gain weight eating keto if you consume more than you burn.

  6. Lori on January 4, 2016 at 6:01 pm

    Ugh, day two and I caved. I try so hard to set myself up for success. I remove all carbs from the house, precook keto meals that only need to be reheated, stock up on broth, and avoid leaving the house for the first three days when the carb cravings are the worst.

    I’ll try again tomorrow 🙁

    • Kev on January 14, 2016 at 5:18 pm

      …and the next day, and the next day. If I can do it, anyone can. Trust me, I never met a donut I didn’t love. Even ones found on the ground.

    • Kaylin on January 22, 2016 at 6:16 am

      Starting slowly is the only way to go. Cutting carbs one meal at a time, cutting out sugar, coffee, soda, junk food etc very slowly. It took me months to work myself up to doing keto (wasn’t in the original plan but thought I would give it a go as the diet I was on just wasn’t working anymore). Going from massive carb/sugar intake to absolutely nothing is bound to give you severe headaches and that’s probably why you cave. It happened to me in the past. I’ve been about 2 or 3 weeks on fat fast/keto diet and my hunger and cravings are non-existent….and I use to be the queen of carbs! Feeling drained though so have to replace electrolytes and watch protein intake apparently. Best of luck.

  7. Manar on April 19, 2015 at 4:08 am

    Can you give some examples of what some typical meals look like for you ie sample breakfast, lunch and dinner? Thanks!

    • Lori on January 4, 2016 at 6:04 pm

      I usually make a protein shake for breakfast (ON Whey Protein plus 2tbsp of heavy whipping cream and water)
      Lunch is usually 4 hardboiled eggs and 4 string cheese
      Dinner is usually a pound of ground beef drowned in cheese.

  8. bebe on April 5, 2015 at 4:52 pm

    I’m new to keto, this is my 4th day. I don’t really feel anything weird yet, and I’m worried I’m not doing everything right.. Breakfast was easy, but I don’t know how to get my proteins right – I should be intaking about 60g, and I don’t know how to do that.
    Also I usually overdo on almonds, so my carbs are around 20g. It’s just that I shouldn’t eat dairy, so my choices are limited. Should I stick to green veggies and oil, a tiny piece of meat and some avocado?
    This is harder than it seems!

    • Dominic on April 8, 2015 at 12:38 am

      Bebe-

      Honestly, I wouldn’t worry about counting specifics when you first start. It makes it too difficult. I would eat whatever you want when you’re hungry, just as long as you are under 20 grams of carbs.

      From there, you can see if you are losing and if you need to actually count calories.

      Dominic

      • Lori on January 4, 2016 at 6:10 pm

        Agreed. When you start, worry about carbs. After a while you can start to worry about your other macros. You should look into fat bombs since you don’t eat dairy. There are a lot of recipes online but I recommend 1 stick unsalted butter, 1 package of cream cheese, 1/4 cup of artificial sweetener, 1 tsp flavor extract. Mix all, drop onto wax paper in spoonfuls (about 18). Freeze until hard. Can be stored in freezer or fridge. Eat 2-3 at a time.

        • Dumbfounded on January 9, 2016 at 1:13 pm

          “Since you don’t eat dairy…”, and then you go on to recommend a recipe containing both butter and cream cheese. The OP was probably expecting advice from people who understand basic dietary terms.

          • Zane Paul on October 26, 2016 at 3:12 am

            ??????
            That’s too funny



  9. Charlie on March 22, 2015 at 3:31 pm

    Hi, Thank you for a very inspiring and helpful post. I am completely new to this diet but I am loving it so far. I have a few questions about Ketogenic diet though. I have been looking everywhere for an answer on whether I can eat foods like lentils, cooked and fresh coconut. Flesh, coconut water, everything of it. Thanks again for a great post.

    • Dominic on April 3, 2015 at 1:36 am

      As long as it fits your macros (under your daily allotment of carbs), you can eat it.

      Dominic

  10. Carolyn on March 12, 2015 at 3:11 pm

    I found this on Pinterest after a ketogenic diet was suggested to me for seizure control. I followed your simple rules, and that was pretty much it. I’ve lost 130lbs and it was pretty much as simple as following these rules.

  11. adam on March 2, 2015 at 9:14 pm

    Hi ive been doing keto about 3/4 weeks and reading some of these comments ot would appear its working. Although i never heard about the eating carbs 1 night a week. Is this reccomended?

    • Dominic on March 4, 2015 at 2:39 am

      It depends on your plan. I found that it helped me deal with binge eating disorder if I was allowed carbs for one day at the time. I no longer follow that plan, though.

  12. Kerry on January 21, 2015 at 10:43 am

    Hi Dominic……I am just starting out on Keto and am confused as to how much fat I can actually consume……I understand the science but am worried about having too much. Should I be watching the calories as well as the fat count. I just don’t know if I am doing this right as I am not losing very much weight. I am tempted to have half an avocado but worry about the calories not the fat……
    I have a sedentary job as well……haven’t had the burst of energy yet….
    Cheers from Tasmania Australia

    • Lori on January 4, 2016 at 6:28 pm

      I know we’ve been taught from the cradle that fat kills but you really need to rethink it. The reason that our fat cells fill with fatty acids is because insulin triggers fat cells to take in glucose from our bloodstream. When we’re in ketosis, less insulin is released because we are eating a lot fewer carbs. The liver is also converting the fatty acids in our bloodstream to ketones. The ketones get used for energy.
      Eating fat keeps us satiated for long periods and keeps our energy levels even. In the not so distant past, we used to feed the lean cuts of meat to our dogs and keep the fatty pieces for ourselves. We’ve done a complete 180°. It’s easy to think that fat makes us fat but that has no basis on reality. Actual science shows that carbohydrates get broken down into glucose, which gets absorbed by our fat cells and stored as triglycerides.
      I’m pretty sedentary and eat <18g carb, ~70g protein, and ~150g fat each day. I lost 85lbs last year. And I barely are any veggies (too many carbs), ate lots of fat, and rarely exercised.
      Check to see if you're in ketosis by using the urine testing strips. Keep a detailed food log. And check out the Reddit keto forums if you would like someone to give you detailed advice on your food choices.

      Cheers

  13. joretta on January 16, 2015 at 1:47 pm

    Hi. I started eating keto after I did a 21 day sugar detox. I believe it will help me. I have type 2 diabetes and R.A. I also believe I am slightly glutten sensitive although I have no doctors tests for this. After the 21 day sugar detox I had lost 20 lbs. Stopped my humalog insulin cut the Lantus insulin in half. Since starting the keto I have stopped taking metformin and stopped the blood pressure pills I was on. I have lost the 5 lbs I gained over Christmas and another 3. My problem is I am not losing weight any more. I go up 2 lbs down 2 lbs. I had a carb load day and now I feel completely out of sync. Any ideas or words of wisdom for me?

    • Dominic on January 17, 2015 at 7:07 pm

      In the words of the keto forum at Reddit, “Keep Calm and Keto On!”

  14. Beth on January 11, 2015 at 1:32 am

    Great advice! Back off the carbs here post-holidays — fortunately it seems the only damage done was easily dropped in the ‘water weight’ initial drop back on Keto. Onward!

    When you do need a quick treat but don’t want to derail your hard work, what’s your favorite go-to treat?

    • Dominic on January 17, 2015 at 7:08 pm

      Beth, when I did keto it was always either a decent hunk of cheese or some bacon (meat candy, haha). I was never really big on sweets personally.

  15. Back to “Normal” | BaconAndEggz on January 8, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    […] 5 New Mistakes on Keto […]

  16. Greg on December 9, 2014 at 5:41 pm

    Hi All.
    Please give me best examples of fat sources for daily eating.
    Just need to compse 2, sometimes 3 courses daily. Breakfest is easy : eggs+beacon, sometimes cheese. But what with Lunch, what about supper (when have one). Still struggling to find best sources of fat. My issue also is my work, I’m traveling a lot so I need to find fat in hotel restaurants, or outside in town (not easy at all).
    Appreciate all pointers. Cheers all.

    • Dominic on December 9, 2014 at 11:28 pm

      Greg-

      For on-the-go fat, I would recommend always keeping some nut butter handy. They even make little packets now that you can buy and stash in your car or office.

      For dinner, I use butter every single night. Whether it’s on my meat or vegetables (or both), it’s filling and delicious. For lunch you could have a salad and use olive oil or the others mentioned previously.

      Many people also use coconut oil. I will sometimes consume this raw, but I don’t particularly like the flavor it gives off when cooking.

      Hope this helps,

      Dominic

  17. Patricia on October 29, 2014 at 7:53 pm

    I was wondering how much fat are you supposed to eat, I know that it will be hard to say specifically, but I am wondering if I am not eating enough fat, I am just stuck after losing 8 lbs. but I still have that fear I will over do it?

    Thanks!

    • Dominic on November 9, 2014 at 4:26 pm

      I don’t think there’s a set number honestly for any person. I would just follow what your body tells you!

      • red john on November 19, 2014 at 11:03 pm

        hey hey!
        fat guy here 🙂
        I was wondering if you’ve done any research on T3 shutdown and at what duration in the ketogenic time line this may occur?
        I want to do this but wonder at what point I should switch to carb Nite-
        you can email me at blue.is.blue@icloud.com
        thank you D!

  18. Sarah Pearce (@6Foot_Sarah) on October 13, 2014 at 2:08 pm

    Sorry but you left one out…replacing breads and baked goods with low carb options, then over eating them. I see a lot of people do it, then cry when they have not lost any weight. The mindset has to change, more than the food.

    • Dominic on October 15, 2014 at 3:41 am

      That’s a good one!

  19. January on September 25, 2014 at 10:23 pm

    Glad to know having the shits is normal. I was a little worried. How long will this last?

    • Dominic on September 29, 2014 at 2:52 am

      It is different for everybody, but a couple of days to a week seems to be average.

  20. caitlin on September 23, 2014 at 10:48 pm

    Hey there.. So I have jumped in head first into this and have completely cut carbs and sugar.. Went through a few days of feeling like complete crap but other days are good… Is there an app that I can use that I can put my information in to make sure I’m eating enough fats?.. Just not eating like this my entire life I feel as if I’m going g over board? How do you know how much food to eat a day..?

    • Dominic on September 24, 2014 at 12:56 am

      Caitlin-

      I would suggest using My Fitness Pal if you want to track.

      Honestly though, it’s VERY hard to overeat fat. My suggestion for you would be to simply watch carbs in the beginning and eat as much fat as you desire. That way it’s less stressful to start and you will definitely see results. Fat is so satiating that you won’t be hungry and eventually, your cravings will all go away!

      Dominic

  21. Callaghan on September 22, 2014 at 12:14 am

    How do I balance my fats and proteins. I am struggling with only this part of the diet. I am fine on my carbs, sugar.. etc. I am in high school and find myself starving sometimes.

    • Dominic on September 23, 2014 at 2:48 am

      I would focus on just making an effort to eat more fats before trying to perfect the ratio. Eat more butter, oils, animal fats, high fat dairy.

      Dominic

  22. Claire on May 20, 2014 at 8:24 pm

    Hi, I’m a newbie!!! Just a quick question.. Are you allowed a cheat potato or bit of bread here or there?? Or does this totally f up your ketosis? If so how long before you get back into ket state? Although I already follow a low(ish) carb diet I do like the odd piece of bread when out or slice of pizza once in a blue moon.. Is this type of allowance going to cause me to gain weight fast?

    • Dominic on May 21, 2014 at 9:46 pm

      It would probably kick you out of ketosis, but you might have success with a program that utilizes carb backloading. Basically, it’s super low carb all week, but one night you can eat as much of anything in a certain time window.

      Check out Carb Nite:
      http://carbnite.com/

  23. Jasmin on May 15, 2014 at 3:24 am

    Great! Only 5 points… yay! Thank you so much for making it so easy! You are bookmarked! 😉

  24. Lin on January 27, 2014 at 4:03 am

    Oh, and what about those carb free shirataki noodles? Are they any good? Do they work for this lifestyle? (I am trying to avoid the word “diet!”)

    • Dominic Geracia on January 27, 2014 at 7:39 pm

      Lin-

      A lot of people on ketogenic and gluten-free diets use these noodles. I’ve tried them twice and the flavor was fine, but I couldn’t get over how chewy they were. I much prefer making noodles out of zucchini instead!

      Dominic

  25. Chris on January 6, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    Do you refeed? My lifts in gym are strugglingn only 5 days in do I do a one carb refeed meal?

    • Dominic Geracia on January 6, 2014 at 11:45 pm

      If you check out the link on the right of my page, there’s an image that goes to Carb Nite that can help explain things. I essentially refeed once a week. It helps me out a lot. I usually have potatoes or rice in the meal, but still choose to be gluten free.

      Hope this helps,

      Dominic

  26. bebo attia on January 6, 2014 at 5:35 am

    This great info. Thanks!

  27. Dan on January 3, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    I love reading an article that scratches you right where you itch. How long have you been on keto? How is your IBS? I’ve never been diagnosed w/ IBS or Chron’s, but I had severe digestive issues, food allergies, diarrhea etc.. I just started the keto diet, but it, along with some other things I’ve been doing, seem to be helping my digestive issues slowly. It took my body approximately 5 weeks to adapt to a ketogenic diet.

    • Dominic Geracia on January 4, 2014 at 5:32 pm

      Dan-

      Hope it continues to get better for you! Best of luck 🙂

      Dominic

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