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So, you’ve read about the keto diet and it is something that you think you might would like to try. Did you know that the keto diet started as therapeutic diet for chronic illnesses? [6] The ketogenic diet is a diet that the vast majority of planet can follow so long as they have the discipline. Before starting, I strongly recommend that you talk to your doctor about your switch to the ketogenic. Moving fro mthe last couple posts about what is the keto diet and what it was like for me, let’s get out of the shallow end and dive into the deep end of the keto diet explained in depth.

The Keto Diet Explained: Getting into Ketosis

How to get into ketosis is pretty simple. The first way to do it, is by dieting alone. Find the keto ratio (below) that works for you, and make sure that you hit your macros as described. This is the only way that I would ever coach a client to enter into ketosis if I were a keto coach. I recommend this for everyone. When it comes to your diet, messing it up can severely affect things like your metabolism, and how your body processes certain foods. So, it’s best just to take the longer route and get it done right.

However, there is a second option to help speed things up. The next option for getting into ketosis is fasting. No, I don’t mean Ramadan, and yes you still get to eat food. I am talking about Intermittent Fasting. Having put this out there, I do not recommend this as your entry into the ketogenic diet unless you have experience with it previously. I do not believe in taking too many drastic changes on at once. It is a lot on the body, and a lot to keep up with. Changing habits starts with making them do able.

The Keto Diet Explained: Ratios

There are several different types of the ketogenic diet that we will be going over. Here you will need to find the ratio of the ketogenic diet that you think you can stick with. After finding the ratio of your diet, we will be going over the different means and methods of ketogenic as well.

The Classic Keto

is a 4:1 ratio. This means that it is one of the most difficult. I would consider this an expert level of dieting. This diet will require expert level attention to the macronutrients that are being consumed. To complete this diet at these ratios you will need to carefully plan every meal and weigh out each item of food to ensure that you are not overeating in any certain macronutrient area.

The classic keto diet explained in pie chart

The Modified Keto

 is typically recognized in three variations of ratios of 3:1, 2:1, and 1:1. The more even the ratio the easier this diet will become. When I did the ketogenic diet last, I followed a 2:1 ratio. For beginners I recommend aiming for a 1:1 ratio or a 2:1 ratio. From there you can scale up or down your keto in intensity however you like. I highly recommend sticking with the diet ratios that you have chosen for a minimum three-month time frame to let the body adjust to keto before scaling up or down. All diets take time for the body to get used to, and this one is no different.

The 3:1 keto diet explained in pie chart

The 2:1 keto diet explained in pie chart

The 1:1 keto diet explained in pie chart

The MCT Keto

is a ketogenic diet that is based on the majority of the fats coming from MCT oil with a 1:9:1 ratio. MCT stands for medium chain triglycerides. Discovered in the 1960’s MCT’s produce more ketone bodies per unit of energy [6]. The MCT keto is a form of keto where 40-60% of the dietary fat comes from MCTs. [5] In 2013 a study was done stating that the MCT diet is as excellent for treatment of epilepsy as the classic keto diet. [4] MCT oil is more ketogenic than long-chain triglycerides are, and allows for more proteins and carbs. [4]

The MCT keto diet explained in pie chart

The Keto Diet Explained: Ratios Explained

I bet you are wondering what those ratios 3:1 and 1:9:1 even mean. Without further ado, let me explain. So, the ratio of 3:1 on a modified version of keto, means that for every three grams of fat you should be consuming one gram of protein and carbs. Along with this comes the 4:4:9 rule. This is important calculating percentages of macros and knowing How to Read a Nutrition Label. Each gram of fat is equal to nine calories. Simply put more calories per gram equals more satiating. This math will come in handy when calculating the grams of fat per day based on the ratio of your choice.

3:1 Modified Keto Ratio Example

3:1 ratio means for every 4 grams of food consumed, 3 of them are fat and 1 gram of protein and carbs combined.

1g of Fat = 9 calories/1g of Protein = 4 calories/1g of carbs = 4 calories

3:1 = 27:4 — > 27+4=31 This means that for every 4g of food consumed, you should eat 27calories of fat and 4 calories of carbs/protein

27/31 = .87×100 = 87% of total calories consumed should be fat

4/31= .129×100 = 13% of total calories consumed should be carbs/protein.

Do this again for protein/carbs…

3:1 of 13%

12:4 — > 12+4 = 16 this means that for every 16g of protein, you should eat 4g of carbs

12/16 = .75 — > .75×13%x100 = 9.75 rounding up we get = 10% protein

4/16 = .25 — > .25×13%x100 = 3.25 rounding down we get = 3% carbs

total dietary calories x 87% = total calories from fat / 9 = total grams of fat

               1,800 calories (total) X 87% = 1566 Calories / 9 = 174g of fat

               1,800 x 10% = 180 calories / 4 = 45g of protein

               1,800 x 3% = 54 calories / 4 = 13.5g net carbs

The Keto Diet Explained: Carb Timing

Additionally, there are four different theories on when to consume carbs based on your goals. Combine this with the right ratio of nutrition and you will have set a base line and a starting point for going keto. Let’s go over theses four different theories so that you can get started being fit to be you as soon as possible.

The Standard Keto

 is the most common form of keto. Typically, when someone talks about the ketogenic diet, this is what they are talking about. Although still aiming to be under the net amount of carbs for the given ratio of keto that you have chosen, There is no specific timing of carbs and can be consumed throughout the day.

The Cyclical Keto

is a form of the ketogenic diet that involves eating at or under the ratio of carbs for the given ratio you have selected and then on other days eating more carbs than given for the ratio of keto you chose to follow. The carb loading phase lasts 24-48 hours, and it is typical that roughly 70% of the daily calories are from carbs. After this 24-48 hour time period you would return to eating your chosen keto ratio.

Although carb cycling is a big part of body building world, I personally do not recommend this carb cycle while on keto for a couple reasons. The first being that it such as flux on the body, and a constant switch up on the gut health of your body. All diets take some time to for the body to get used to. The second is that there is never a good reason to consume 70% of your calories from carbs. That makes for unbalanced diet. The third reason is that this means you are constantly pulling yourself in and out of keto. Additionally, to the fluxed state of keto, if you read The Ketogenic Diet than you know that carb cravings will become a thing once you consume over the net total carbs.

The Targeted Keto

 is essentially a hybrid of the standard keto and the cyclical keto. This is a form of the diet which involves timing of the consumption of the allotted amount of carbs for the chosen ratio of your choice. If you have read my other post about carbs not being the enemy, then it is likely that you already understand the reasoning of this is an ideal timing of the carbs. If I was to do the ketogenic diet again, I would do a hybrid of the target keto and the next version of the keto diet, the high protein keto

The High Protein Keto

is exactly what it sounds like. Most of the keto ratios are based on a moderate ratio of protein. In this version of keto you will want to consume more protein than in the given ratio you have chosen. This is ideal for people looking to build muscle. I recommend keeping the ratio of carbs as still as possible when playing with the numbers/. This will likely lead to you eating a higher ratio of keto, as the higher amount of protein consumed must be taken from the ratio somewhere. The next obvious spot is the carbs since it is the only 1/3 that you are trying to not consume.  

Consuming Carbs Better

I know the main idea of keto is to stay away from carb heavy things, and consume your carbs from vegetables. However, a.) cravings are a thing and b.) in lower ratios of keto you have more carbs to play with. So, it’s not entirely impossible that you will eat something like rice on the diet. I always preach the importance of making sure that the carbs you eat are complex carbohydrates. Sorry not sorry for sounding like a broken record. For keto, this is important because complex carbohydrates are broken down more slowly, releasing less sugar into the blood at a given time. This also means there is less of the insulin being released, and the body is more likely to stay in ketosis. Plus, they have more fiber which is important in the carbohydrate formula of keto. Overall the complexity of the carbohydrates is better for the body.

The Keto Diet Explained: How Do You Know When You’re There

Keto breath

 is a clear sign that your body has entered ketosis. If you don’t brush your teeth and your breath smells bad this is not a sign that you are in ketosis. This is just a sign of poor hygiene. However, keto breath is very real and very smelly. Even after brushing your teeth the smell of keto breath can linger. Don’t worry though, it’s temporary. Is this real? How does this even happen?… When the body stats producing large number of ketones the breakdown of the fatty acids for energy leaves the a byproduct known as acetone [7]. The acetone then escapes through the mouth becoming keto breath [7]. Keto breath is often attributed to a metallic fruity smell. This is far from accurate method of testing to ensure ketosis, and I recommend one of the two below testing methods.

Helpful home remedies to getting rid of keto breath

Urine test

are the most popular method of testing for ketosis. Testing strips are easily available in stores and online for cheap. Use of the urine testing strips is pretty straightforward. Once you have the result, compare the color to which the testing strip changed with the amount sample colors on the bottle. Keep in mind when testing for ketones, there are less ketones in urine than there is in the blood.

Blood test

are the other recommended testing solution to finding out if you are in ketosis. Blood testing will be the most accurate form of testing for ketosis. However, with that accuracy comes with a cost. Blood testing is the most expensive way that you can test for ketosis. Blood testing for ketosis is typically used by those with diabetes. The device looks similar to that of a glucose testing device. For blood testing ketone levels will typically be in the .5 – 3 mml/L

Summary

Alright, we just covered a lot of information on the ketogenic diet. If you have read my other two post on The Ketogenic Diet and My Experience with The Ketogenic Diet. Then together we have covered a metric ton of information. So, let’s do a quick rundown.

  • Vast majority of people are candidates for keto
    • Check with your doctor before starting
  • For expert level dieters Intermittent Fasting will help get you into ketosis
  • There are 4 main Ketogenic ratios
    • Classic Keto 4:1
      • The original design of keto
    • Modified Keto 3:1
      • 2nd hardest ratio
    • Modified Keto 2:1
      • 3rd hardest ratio – average user recommendation
    • Modified Keto 1:1
    • 4th hardest ratio – average user recommendation
      • MCT Keto 1:9:1
  • There are 4 main ketogenic diet formats
    • The Standard Keto
      • Carbs are consumed anytime
    • The Cyclical Keto
      • Short bursts of carb loading followed by long periods of carb restriction
    • The Targeted Keto
      • Carbs are consumed 30 min – 1 hour before or after exercise
    • The High Protein
      • More carbs are taken from the diet in order to consume more protein calories
  • 3 signs of being in ketosis
    • Keto Breath
    • Urine Testing (most popular)
    • Blood Testing (most accurate and expensive)

sunny day picture of the owner of the blog
Hey there! My name is Hampton Tyler and I help others achieve their dream physique and fitness goals. I am certified in general nutrition and personal training. I have over 6 years in sports fitness and bodybuilding combined. Even now I am still learning new things all the time.

Sources

  1. ^The Charlie Foundation for Ketogenic Therapies. (N/A). “What is a Ketogenic Diet? Keto Diet Fact, Research, and Variations.” https://charliefoundation.org/diet-plans/
  2. ^KetoVale Team. (2017/10/10). “Different Types of Ketogenic Diets”. https://www.ketovale.com/different-types-of-ketogenic-diets/
  3. ^KetoCal. (2014.09.16). “The Ketogenic Ratio Explained”. https://www.myketocal.com/blog/the-ketogenic-ratio-explained/
  4. ^Division of Neurology, Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (2013 Jan-Feb.). “Medium-chain triglyceride ketogenic diet, an effective treatment for drug-resistant epilepsy and a comparison with other ketogenic diets.” http://biomedj.cgu.edu.tw/pdfs/2013/36/1/images/BiomedJ_2013_36_1_9_107154.pdf
  5. ^The Epilepsy Foundation. (2007.08.15). “The MCT Diet.” https://www.epilepsy.com/article/2007/8/mct-diet
  6. ^Dr. Ananya Mandal, MD. (2019/02/26). “History of the Ketogenic Diet.” https://www.news-medical.net/health/History-of-the-Ketogenic-Diet.aspx
  7. ^Samantha Lauriello (2019.02.22). “Keto Breath Is a Common Problem for Low-Carb Dieters—Here’s What You Can Do About It.” https://www.health.com/weight-loss/keto-breath

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