The Ketogenic Diet and Weight Loss Plateaus
No matter how careful and vigilant you are
on the keto diet, eventually, your weight
loss can taper off and eventually stop.
Ideally, this will align perfectly with your
goal weight, but it often doesn’t work out
If you experience a weight-loss plateau when
you’re not expecting it, it might be time
to switch up your dietary approach just a
The key to pushing past weight loss plateaus
is to make minor adjustments to your current
See, once we’re done losing water weight
at the beginning of a keto diet, we then tend
to lose both fat and muscle mass.
How much of each you lose depends on a number
of factors: Good exercise, diet, sleep and
stress habits prevent muscle mass loss.
Since most of us want to lose the fat and
keep, or even increase, muscle mass, these
factors are really important to your keto
It is also essential that you set a reasonable
calorie deficit and eat an appropriate amount
Use our keto calculator to find out what these
values are for you.
One of the culprits of weight loss plateaus
is your body decreasing its total daily energy
Sometimes, if we over-restrict calories, our
bodies regulate and decrease our energy expenditure
as a way to increase our resilience and longevity.
Another reason is that, as you lose weight,
your body will have a new maintenance calorie
And as your calorie deficit percentage decreases,
your weight loss rate will slow down.
This cycle will continue until your previous
calorie deficit becomes the amount of calories
you need to maintain weight.
That’s when you stop losing weight.
To push past a weight loss plateau, it can
be very helpful to track both calories and
macros and that you recalculate your macros
every month, or for every 10 pounds lost.
Each time you recalculate, reduce your calorie
deficit a bit so the diet is easier to maintain
and your metabolic rate doesn’t rapidly
If you restrict calories too much, you might
cause your brain’s bodyweight defending
processes, which we mentioned before, to kick
in at full force, and this can slow your progress.
Our video “Macros and Keto Calculator”
will guide you through this integral part
of your keto toolkit.
You also want to be sure that you’re eating
the optimal amount of protein.
Not enough protein means losing muscle mass
and experiencing more hunger and cravings,
while too much can decrease ketone production
and increase your reliance on sugar burning.
The keto calculator can help you dial in your
ideal number, because the general recommendations
vary widely between 0.6 and 1.2 grams per
pound of lean body mass, depending on your
Other strategies, like intermittent fasting
and short term fat fasts have helped people
bust through weight loss plateaus, as well.
An intermittent fast is when you restrict
yourself to a specific eating window, which
allows your body to go into its fasting state
and burn more fat and ketones for fuel.
A common strategy is to eat only two or three
meals in an 8-hour window, for instance between
11 a.m. and 7 p.m.
Most people choose to skip breakfast and have
a larger lunch and dinner.
For more information about IF, read over the
article “Intermittent Fasting on a Keto
Diet” on Ruled.me
A fat fast is when you eat mostly fat and
restrict your calories significantly for between
two and four days.
The lack of carbs and protein will deplete
your glycogen stores quicker and increase
For breakfast, consider a ketoproof coffee
with a generous amount of cream.
For lunch, some simple deviled eggs; and for
dinner, canned sardines mixed with mayonnaise.
For more info and a sample three day plan,
see the Ruled.Me article, “Using the Fat
Another important factor to consider is if
food sensitivities may be stalling your weight
Common food allergies and sensitivities, like
dairy and gluten, can stand in the way of
your weight loss goals.
If you’re having trouble losing weight and
suspect that dairy or gluten may be to blame,
it might be worth trying a dairy-free ketogenic
diet or cutting out all gluten, including
those found in low-carb processed foods.
For more info on going dairy-free, see the
article, “Guide to Going Dairy-Free on a
Ketogenic Diet” on Ruled.Me.
Consistency is also key.
Even one cheat day can take a long time to
recover from, and water weight may come back.
Stay on top of tracking your carbs and your
macros, which will help prevent plateaus,
For support, answers to frequently asked questions,
recipes and more, use Ruled.Me as your go-to
resource for all things keto!