All the information in this post is part of our ebook 7 Ketogenic Diet Hacks to Keep the Fat Burning.
If you want you can get it for FREE and get access to more information like:
- What is the keto diet?
- Advantages of the keto diet
- Keto diet side effects – the keto flu
- Keto diet foods to consume and avoid
7 Keto Diet Hacks to Keep the Fat Burning
Hack 1: Create a keto diet meal plan you can follow in advance
It doesn’t matter if you are trying to build a house, start a new business, get fit, or lose weight, you’ll make much better progress if you have a plan. As the saying goes, failing to plan means planning to fail!
Whatever you are trying to achieve, a plan gives your actions the direction they need to be productive. Not having a plan is like setting off on a long journey without a map – you might end up going in entirely the wrong direction.
While there are keto diet plans you can follow, none of them were designed specifically for you. They are generic and aimed at groups rather than individuals. Therefore, they might not be right for you.
You are free to follow pre-existing keto plans, but you’ll get better results if you craft your own. And the best time to create a plan is before you even start your diet.
Follow these steps to create the perfect keto meal plan for you!
1. Choose a start date for your diet
Take a look at your calendar and choose the day you are going to start your diet. Give yourself a few days to plan and prepare. That way, when K-day rolls around, you are ready, and everything should go without a hitch.
2. Plan your menu
Giving up high-carb staples such as pasta, rice, potatoes, and breakfast cereal can leave you wondering what you should eat. If you are in a quandary when mealtime arrives, you may find yourself inadvertently eating something that is not keto diet-friendly. Avoid this problem by planning your menu in advance.
Take a sheet of paper and plan your breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks for the next 1-2 weeks. Not sure where to start? Just Google “easy keto recipes” and you’ll find lots of inspiring ideas.
3. Go grocery shopping
Create a shopping list from your menu of all the groceries you need. Head to the store and buy everything you need to make your keto-friendly meals. There is nothing worse than planning your menu and then, when it’s time to cook, discovering that you don’t have all the ingredients you need.
Make sure you also stock on carb-free sundries such as herbs, spices, sugar-free sweeteners, and anything else you’ll need. Do NOT buy any high-carb treats. If you have them, even if you intend to save them for another time, you may end up eating them if you experience a moment of weakness.
4. Pre-prepare at least some of your meals in advance
Just because you have a menu and the ingredients for your keto meals does not guarantee you will make them. If you get home late from work, feeling hungry and tired, you may be tempted to grab a sandwich instead of making a keto-friendly dinner.
Avoid this problem by making at least some of your meals in advance. This will ensure that, even if time or your energy levels are running low, you can have a meal ready in minutes. Spend a couple of hours batch-cooking meals so that you have several meals “in the bank” for those times when you can’t or don’t want to spend time cooking.
Remember the five Ps – Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance. Planning your menu and meals in advance will make sticking to the keto diet much easier.
Hack 2: Try a cyclic ketogenic diet (CKD)
The regular ketogenic diet can keep you in ketosis for weeks at a time. Ketosis is when your body preferentially burns fat and ketones for energy. While the keto diet is good for fat loss, it’s not so good for people who like to exercise. Also, some people may find that their weight loss plateaus after a long period in ketosis.
During intense exercise, your body likes to use glycogen for energy. Glycogen is glucose stored in your muscles. Your body makes glucose and glycogen from carbohydrates.
When you follow a low carbohydrate keto diet, your glycogen levels start to fall. Low glycogen levels can make intense workouts like strength training, CrossFit, or sports very hard, and your performance will probably suffer. You may even find that you are weaker than usual, are unable to exercise as hard or as long, or don’t recover very well from your workouts. This will make your workouts less effective and less enjoyable too.
These issues can be avoided by following a cyclic ketogenic diet – CKD for short.
With the CKD, you periodically break your ketogenic diet with measured amounts of carbohydrates. While this will kick you out of ketosis, putting the brakes on fat burning, it restocks your muscle glycogen stores so that, for a few days at least, you have an abundant supply of energy for intense exercise.
Being able to exercise intensely will offset the short time you spent out of ketosis, and also allow you to have at least a few intense, productive workouts. With the cyclic ketogenic diet, it’s also possible to lose fat and burn muscle at the same time – something a lot of fitness experts believe is impossible.
The cyclic ketogenic diet works best when combined with a planned workout schedule. The aim is to do your hardest workouts when your glycogen stores are full. As your glycogen levels are depleted, your workouts should become easier and shorter. For example:
The last workout of the week, marked with a *, is designed to fully drain your glycogen stores and maximize insulin sensitivity. This will ensure that more of the carbs consumed when you break from ketosis is preferentially shunted into your muscles and away from your fat stores. This workout won’t be a lot of fun – you’ll be tired even before you start, but it’s a necessary step to make the CKD as effective as possible. On the plus side, you can start eating carbs the moment it’s over.
After a day or two of eating carbs, you should feel strong and energized. Expect to set some new personal records over the next few days. Make the most of your restocked glycogen stores by training extra hard during the days immediately after your carb refeed. These will be the most productive workouts of your week.
Exercise and the ketogenic diet are not always compatible, especially if you prefer intense workouts. The cyclic ketogenic diet allows you to enjoy all the benefits of cutting carbs but won’t stop you from doing the intense workouts you love. It’s an excellent option for serious exercisers.
Hack 3: Try a targeted keto diet
With a standard ketogenic diet, you are permitted to eat no more than 50 grams of carbs per day. After you have depleted your muscle and liver glycogen stores, this will keep you in ketosis for as long as you want. If you want rapid and regular weight loss, this is probably the best option for you.
However, if you enjoy intense exercise, the standard ketogenic diet may leave you feeling flat, and unable to work out as long or as hard as you want to. The solution to this problem is the Cyclic Ketogenic Diet, as outlined above.
While the CKD is excellent for hardcore exercisers, it’s not perfect. It’s all too easy to go overboard on your carb refeeds, and that can make going back to keto a real challenge. You end up living for those carb-fueled weekends, and that is not a healthy attitude to have about food.
There is some middle ground between these two extremes – the targeted keto diet. This is a great option for people who exercise but don’t tend to do very long or intense workouts. Let’s call these people recreational exercisers.
With this approach, you consume a fast-acting carb snack immediately before exercise so that you have all the energy you need to exercise. While this carb snack WILL kick you out of ketosis, your workout should quickly use those carbs so that, almost as soon as you are done, you are back to burning fat and ketones for fuel.
The key to making this method work is never consuming more carbs that you will use in your workout. A 50-gram serving should be enough to give you the burst of energy you need, but you may actually get the boost you want from 40 or even just 30 grams of carbs.
The main advantage of the targeted keto diet over the cyclic keto diet is convenience. With the CKD, you are locked into a very specific training and diet schedule.
The targeted keto diet is much more flexible – just use it when you need to. If you only hit the gym three times a week, you only need to use this method on those days. The rest of the time you can stay in ketosis.
Good carb-up snacks that contain around 50 grams of carbs include:
- 2 OUNCES RAISINS
- 6 RICE CAKES
- 1 CUP COOKED PASTA
- 1 CUP BREAKFAST CEREAL
- 1 BAGEL
- 1 SPORTS DRINK
- 1 CANDY OR ENERGY BAR
Ideally, you should consume your fast-acting carbs about 30-minutes before your workout. That way, your blood glucose levels will peak just as you start your workout. This will take a little planning, but it’s still a much simpler option than the more customary cyclic ketogenic diet.
Choose low-fat options because A) fat delays glucose digestion and B) fat contains a lot of unwanted calories that you just don’t need before exercise.
The targeted keto diet is ideal for recreational exercisers. If you feel like you need a little boost to get the most from your workouts, but don’t want to have to resort to a full cyclic ketogenic diet, this is a good option.
Hack 4: Intermittent fasting (IF) on a keto diet
The keto diet is a great fat loss diet. Eating 50 grams or less of carbs per day all-but forces your body to burn fat for fuel. Weight loss is rapid, and after a week or two things like hunger and low energy become things of the past. Initially, you may not even have to count calories – just being in ketosis will give you the results you want.
Unfortunately, like any diet, weight loss can slow down and even grind to a halt with keto. This is commonly called a plateau. In simple terms, your body gets used to your no longer new diet.
Weight loss plateaus are frustrating. You’re doing your best, but you aren’t getting the results you deserve. How frustrating! It’s enough to make you give up.
Before you quit the keto diet, undoing all your hitherto progress, consider another option: Intermittent Fasting, or IF for short.
With intermittent fasting, you purposely skip meals for a predetermined length of time. It’s up to you how long you go without food, but popular options include:
1. The 12-hour fast
Ideal for new fasters, eat your last meal at 7pm and then break your fast at 7am. If nothing else, this will prevent nighttime snacking.
2. The 16-hour fast
Eat your last meal at around 8pm, and then break your fast the following day with a late breakfast at midday.
3. The 20-hour fast
Eat your last meal at 8pm, and then break your fast at 4pm the following day. This is quite a prolonged fast, and you should only try it after having experimented the previous examples.
4. The 24-hour fast
Don’t eat for an entire day and night. Do this once or twice a week, on non-constitutive days.
5. The alternative day fast
If you coped well with a full 24-hour fast, this could be your next step. Fast for one day, and then eat normally the next. Only suitable for experienced fasters.
6. The 5:2 fast
One of the most popular interpretations of fasting. Eat normally for five days per week, and then fast for two days per week, using the 16 or 18-hour fasting method.
7. Meal skipping
Not sure fasting is right for you? This is the easiest way to try it. Just miss a meal whenever you notice you aren’t hungry. This is also a good way to deepen ketosis or get you into ketosis faster.
8. The warrior fast
Just eat one large meal per day, an hour or so before going to bed. This is thought to simulate how our hunter/gather ancestors ate. Eating shortly before bed may help you sleep more soundly.
Whichever type of IF schedule you follow, it’s essential to understand that, while you won’t be eating food, you must still drink plenty of water. You have enough to contend with while fasting without adding dehydration into the mix. You can also drink unsweetened coffee and tea but should have them without milk. Diet soda is not a good idea. While it IS free from calories, the artificial sweeteners are not healthy and could even trick your body into thinking you are consuming sugar. Water is best!
Begin with a regular ketogenic diet and then, when you are ready, start adding periods of fasting. Start with a short fast, such as 12 hours, and then break your diet with a standard ketogenic meal. Increase the length and frequency of your fasts according to how you feel and your progress.
Hack 5: Get a partner to help motivate and track your progress
One of the hardest parts of any diet is sticking to it. Even a diet as effective as keto can be tough to live with 24/7. While you might want to stick to your diet, your motivation and willpower may have other ideas. Lack of willpower can strike at any time and may be the difference between eating a low-carb breakfast of eggs and avocados and falling headlong into a bowl of frosted flakes!
The good news is that you don’t have to go it alone. In fact, diets and workouts are often easier when you have company. Exercisers often have training partners to help keep them motivated, and you can use the same tried-and-tested approach to make sticking to your diet easier. Your diet partner can be almost anyone who is prepared to keep you accountable – they don’t even have to follow the same diet as you.
Here are five ways a diet partner can help keep you motivated.
1. Send them photos of every meal you eat
If you eat alone, it’s very easy to cheat on your diet. After all, no one else will know but you. Keep yourself honest by sending your diet partner a photo of every meal you eat. Knowing someone else is judging your meals means you won’t be able to cheat without repercussions.
2. Make a bet
Give your diet partner $200 to hold. Tell them that, for every meal you eat that breaks your diet, they can keep $20. However, for every meal you eat that conforms to your diet, they must give you $20 back. The aim of the game is to win back all your money. Cash is a great motivator, and no one likes to lose money unnecessarily. Make sure you send your buddy a picture of your meal to confirm you are sticking to your side of the bet.
3. Have a weekly weigh-in
If you stick to your keto diet, you will lose weight. It’s almost unavoidable! The only reason you won’t get the results you want is if you cheat. As the saying goes, cheats never prosper. Prevent cheating by having a weekly weigh-in. Meet your diet buddy and let them watch weigh yourself. If you weigh yourself alone, you can just shrug off any lack of progress.
However, if you weigh-in with a friend watching, you’ll have to justify your lack of progress to them. This will help motivate you to stay on track. Peer pressure is a wonderful thing!
4. Challenge your partner to a weight loss race
Some people are very competitive. Competition can be very motivating. Make the most of this by challenging your diet partner to a weight loss race. Perhaps to see who can lose twenty pounds the fastest.
Bear in mind that some people can lose weight faster than others and this might not be a fair fight! However, even if you lose the race, you’ll still make faster progress than you would have alone. Competition will help keep you stick to your diet like glue.
5. Eat your meals together
If you are the only person in your family trying to lose weight, meal times can be really hard. As you sit down to your weight loss-friendly meal, they will probably be eating foods that aren’t part of your diet plan. It’s so unfair!
Fix this problem by eating at least a few of your meals with your diet partner. You could even take it in turns to cook for each other. This is a good opportunity to swap recipes and cooking tips, as well as spend some time discussing your progress and concerns. Eating your meals with a like-minded diet partner will make sticking to keto much easier.
There is no need to go it alone – and nor should you try. A diet partner can significantly increase your motivation and will make losing weight a whole lot easier.
Hack 6: Take exogenous ketones
Ketosis is a magical state for weight loss. When you are in ketosis, with no carbs to burn, your body has no choice but to use fat for fuel. Unfortunately, your body cannot get by on fat alone and must convert some of your fat into ketones, a more suitable energy source for your brain and muscles. This process is not very economical, and it takes a lot of fat to make a few ketones. This inefficiency leads to faster fat loss.
However, despite making ketones from fat, there are times when more ketones may be beneficial. You can “top up” your natural ketone levels with a type of supplement called exogenous ketones Exogenous means from an external source.
Exogenous ketones offer several benefits:
1. For fat burning
While taking exogenous ketones won’t make you burn fat, the can help you get into ketosis faster. The sooner you get into ketosis, the sooner you can start burning fat like a furnace.
Consuming exogenous ketones lets your body know it’s time to start using ketones for fuel and that it should begin converting fat into ketones. Using exogenous ketones will also help you get into a deeper state of ketosis so that you burn fat faster.
2. For avoiding the keto flu
It takes a few days and up to two weeks for your body to make the switch to burning ketones for fuel, a state called ketosis. During that time, you may feel unwell, suffering from the keto flu. Keto flu isn’t serious, but it can be uncomfortable enough to put some people off the keto diet.
However, once you have made the shift into ketosis, you should feel great on ketones. Hunger will disappear, and you’ll have an abundance of energy. You’ve just got to tough it out.
Exogenous ketones can help get your body used to using ketones for fuel, making the transition into ketosis much easier. This will help relieve many of the symptoms of keto flu.
3. Energy for exercise
Even when you are in ketosis, you only have limited amounts of ketones available. That’s no big deal if you are sat at your desk or lounging in front of the TV but could be a problem if you are heading out for a workout.
Taking exogenous ketones before and during exercise can provide you with energy without kicking you out of ketosis, as consuming carbs would. Ketones are a particularly good source of energy during cardio.
4. Increased mental productivity
Your brain runs on glucose or at least it did before you kicked carbs to the curb and went keto. Without glucose, your mind may get a little foggy from time to time, and you could find that things like concentration, memory, and creativity take a dive.
Exogenous ketones can cross the blood-brain barrier and provide your brain with a much-needed burst of energy. Unlike glucose, exogenous ketones won’t leave you feeling drowsy afterward.
If you need to sharpen your mind and boost productivity and creativity, a serving of exogenous ketones can help.
5. Getting back into ketosis after a dietary slip-up
A strict keto diet can be hard to maintain. There may be times when it’s all-but-impossible to avoid eating more than 50 grams of carbs. After all, if it’s your birthday, it would be rude to turn down a slice of celebratory cake, right?!
Taking exogenous ketones after consuming carbs will get you back into ketosis faster than dieting alone. The sooner you can get back into ketosis, the quicker you can get back to burning fat and losing weight.
No matter what stage of keto you are at, exogenous ketones can help. Keep some handy and use them to make your keto diet as effective and easy as possible.
With all that being said here at Ketogenic Diet Reviews, we have our favorite exogenous ketones pills Keto Bodytone.
If you are looking for that boost to getting to ketosis faster and smoother we highly recommend checking out our review of Ketobodytone supplement.
Hack 7: Keto fat bombs
Fat bombs probably sound like the last thing you should eat during a weight loss diet. It’s a term that conjures up pizzas dripping in greasy cheese, foot-high ice cream sundaes, or deep-fried double bacon burgers with lashings of mayonnaise.
While these kinds of fat bombs are best avoided, there IS a kind of fat bomb that is good for you and could even help you lose weight – keto fat bombs.
The keto diet is great for sustained energy and low levels of hunger, but that doesn’t mean you won’t want the occasional appetite suppressing or energy-boosting snack. Most snack foods, like fruit, candy, and energy bars, are high in sugar or carbs, and eating even a small serving will kick you out of ketosis.
In contrast, keto fat bombs are keto-friendly high-fat snacks that taste amazing and are also loaded with keto diet-friendly superfoods. They are easy to make so you will also have complete control over what you eat. There are no hidden sugars or carbs in homemade keto fat bombs.
Making fat bombs is easy, and most require no cooking. Just follow this three-step process for making your very own keto fat bomb snacks.
1. Find your base fat
Fat bombs are, unsurprisingly, 90% fat. That’s what makes them so keto diet-friendly. Choose fats that are solid at room temperature. Liquid fats do not work – unless you want a keto puddle instead of a fat bomb!
GOOD CHOICES INCLUDE:
- COCONUT OIL
- GRASS-FED BUTTER
- CREAM CHEESE
- NATURAL PEANUT BUTTER
- COCONUT CREAM
- TREE NUT CHEESE (SUCH AS CASHEW NUT CHEESE)
- LARD OR TALLOW
- COCOA BUTTER
2. Add your ketogenic ingredients
Once you have found your base, it’s time to add some a couple of additional ingredients to pump up the taste and nutritional value of your keto fat bombs. You can use sweet or savory ingredients to make your creations.
GOOD INGREDIENTS INCLUDE:
- CACAO POWDER
- VANILLA EXTRACT
- COCONUT FLAKES
- CHOPPED NUTS
- NUT FLOURS
- SEEDS (SUCH AS FLAXSEED, CHIA SEEDS, OR HEMP SEEDS)
- CINNAMON OR GINGER
- BERRIES (SUCH AS BLACKBERRIES OR BLUEBERRIES)
- CHOPPED COOKED MEAT (SUCH AS SALAMI, SALMON, BACON, OR STEAK)
- CHOPPED HERBS
- LOW-CARB VEGETABLES (SUCH AS SCALLIONS OR ONIONS)
- LOW-CARB FRUITS (SUCH AS WILD BLUEBERRIES OR TOMATOES)
- HEAVY CREAM
- SOUR CREAM
- COCONUT CREAM
- LEMON JUICE
- SUGAR-FREE SWEETENERS
3. Put it all together
Take your fat base and add your chosen keto-friendly ingredients. Mix thoroughly to get the taste you want. Spoon out and shape the mixture into bite-sized balls or bars. Place on a sheet of baking parchment and chill to make them firm. Store in an airtight container to keep them fresh.
If you would prefer to follow some tried-and-tested recipes, just Google “keto fat bombs” and you’ll be good to go.
Keto fat bombs are ideal for light snacks or eat a couple as a meal on the go when you don’t have time to stop, cook, and eat. Experiment with the ingredients listed above to create your very own signature fat bomb recipes.
Weight loss can often seem like a complicated subject but, really, it doesn’t have to be. In fact, while the science behind the keto diet is quite complex, eating 50 grams of carbs or less per day is actually very simple.
However, simple doesn’t always mean easy. The keto diet is very different from what most of us think a weight loss diet should be. And what about all the fat you have to eat? How does THAT work?!
Don’t get hung up on the details. If you stick to the basics, the keto diet will work, and you’ll lose fat and weight faster than ever before.
There are lots of things you can do that will make your keto dieting experience even more rewarding. In this book we have covered:
- CREATING MEAL PLANS.
- THE CYCLIC KETOGENIC DIET.
- THE TARGETED KETOGENIC DIET.
- INTERMITTENT FASTING ON KETO
- GETTING A PARTNER TO HELP BOOST YOUR MOTIVATION AND WILLPOWER.
- USING EXOGENOUS KETONES.
- MAKING KETO FAT BOMBS.
Each one of these strategies will boost your progress so that you get better results in less time. You’ll still need to stay true to the keto diet but sticking to your new low carb lifestyle is about to get a whole lot easier.
You don’t need to use all these hacks, but even just a couple of them will make your keto diet experience much more enjoyable and rewarding. Don’t delay – put them into action today!