How to Transition off Keto (Simply and without gaining weight)
So, you’ve tried keto, you’ve gotten impressive results, but now you’re in the mood to get back to some of those delicious old carbs you used to know and love. There’s only one problem. You’re terrified that you’re going to gain all the weight back and feel like crap again. Well, I’ve got good news and bad news. The good news is you don’t have to gain the weight back. The bad news is you could gain the weight back if you’re not careful. In this blog, you’ll learn a simple strategy for transitioning out of keto with some do’s and don’ts for avoiding weight gain.
How To Transition Off Keto: Keys to keeping the weight off and continuing your progress
DO: Start small and progress slowly
Spoiler alert. The best transition strategy is not “PIZZA TIME!” Going crazy on carbs day one is a sure-fire strategy for getting back to the last hole on your belt, along with a severe case of indigestion. Instead, start small. Gradually add carbs back to your diet. During the 1st week of transition, we suggest picking one meal a day and adding carbs to that meal while continuing to eat keto for the remaining meals.
Add carbs to a 2nd meal the during the 2nd week. Continue this pattern until all meals have returned to a healthy and well-balanced diet.
DO: Choose fibrous unprocessed carbs
Think Paleo or Paleo-ish. Paleo is all about eating like early hominids. If you thought about your early ancestors 5,000 years ago, they probably weren’t eating pasta and Whataburger taquitos. They were eating more natural sources of carbohydrates and so should you when you’re transitioning. Carbs like:
- Beans, peas & legumes
If your great, great, great, great, great x50 grandparents could recognize it as a food source, then you’re most likely on the right track.
DON’T: Go crazy with the junk food
I know, I know, it can be tempting. If you’ve been doing Keto for a while, then your cravings should be minimal. Hopefully, that’s the case for you. Regardless, the principle is the same. If you go back to eating a bunch of junk food, you’ll undo all your hard work. Would it be worth it?
Our suggestion is to keep the sugar, alcohol and processed carbs completely out of your diet for at least the 1st week as you transition. After that, go ahead and reward yourself and see how your body reacts. When you’ve finally transitioned, allow yourself to let loose with 5%-10% of your diet.
(Tangent Alert: I know some people don’t think food as a reward is a good idea. I think they’re crazy. People like delicious food. Generally, you reward someone with something they like! You can call ME crazy, but I think that rewarding good behavior is always a good strategy. However, if you prefer another reward then, by all means, do that instead.)
Ok, back on topic now.
AVOID: Simple carbohydrates (this can be tricky)
As we discussed above, you want to choose paleo-ish or paleo carbs. However, there are a few natural foods that have a high glycemic index. These foods are not ideal as you transition because they will spike your blood sugar faster and result in a more extreme reaction from your body.
Some of those deceptive carbs are:
- Anything “made with whole-grain.”
Keto is a great option but for many, it’s something they like to do intermittently, and that’s great! Just be careful as you transition to take it slow and be smart. I promise if you do you’ll be far less likely to gain weight and suffer from GI issues.
Remember, your body has adapted to a new energy source, and it doesn’t like drastic overnight changes. So take it slow. It’s important to transition to another healthy nutrition plan. If you go back to what you used to do, you’ll go back to getting what you used to get.
Good luck and enjoy the process!