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Why YOU Are Not Losing Weight On Keto [11 REASONS]

Not losing weight on keto? Have you hit a plateau? Find out the top 11 reasons why you may not be losing weight on keto.

Just looking at the top 3 articles that come up when I search ‘not losing weight on keto’ makes me cringe.

So, this is my attempt to clear up much of the misinformation that many individuals and websites are spewing.

If you’re not losing weight on keto, this one’s for you.

If I had to give you the top 3 reasons why most people are not losing weight on keto right off the bat from my 15+ years of experience, I’d say (in no particular order):

Not losing weight on keto is typically a symptom of

  1. Eating too much. Eating more than you think.
  2. Impatience/Comparing your progress to others.
  3. Metabolic adaptation. Not adjusting your diet or activity as you lose weight.

Ok, technically that was 4.

Don't have time to read all 6,000+ words? Download a PDF to read offline at a later time.

That said, let’s dive in.


not losing weight on keto pinterest cover

One of the most common questions I get emailed or DM’d about is people asking why they’re not losing weight on keto.

Actually, it’s the number one question I get asked.

As much as I wish there was ONE universal answer to why you’re in ketosis but not losing weight or even in ketosis but gaining weight, there isn’t a one size fits all answer. In fact, I almost inevitably reply with a question of my own such as:

  • What's your primary goal?
  • What are you currently eating?
  • Are you currently tracking your food intake?
  • How long have you been “stalled?”
  • Do you have any medical conditions I should be aware of?

I’m sure many of you reading this now can attest to this. 😉

There are simply too many reasons to why you may be experiencing no weight loss on keto and kudos on being proactive and trying to figure out why.

Here’s my attempt to list all the reasons I’ve come across with those I’ve helped, and chances are one or more of these reasons may apply to why YOU are not losing weight on keto. I’m sure I might be leaving something out, but rest assured I’ll keep this updated.

Reason # 1 – You’re IMPATIENT.

It’s not that you’re not losing weight on keto,  you’re not losing weight on keto FAST ENOUGH. 

Seriously, most of the time people start a conversation telling me that they’ve been on a ketogenic diet for a whopping 5 days, or MAYBE… it has been a whole month.

So, here’s the thing, when you first hop on a ketogenic diet you begin to see quick results, as a result, you become more motivated to continue. After all, it’s not unheard of for people to drop anywhere from 5 to 10 pounds within the first week.

But here’s the rub.

Even though these initial results motivate you to continue, it leaves many with a false sense of what the process will actually be like.

Progress inevitably slows down after that initial drop in weight and you enter into what I refer to as “the suck.”

Yes, you read that correctly.

Basically, “the suck” is this period of time where you may be doing everything correctly, but no progress is, seemingly, being made.

This is the part that people throw their hands up in frustration, break their keyboards, seek help, or give up altogether. This is why I typically recommend people dismiss scale readings during the first four weeks on any weight loss diet.

You’re here though because YOU are one of the few that didn’t give up and are wondering why you’re experiencing no weight loss on keto, so this doesn’t apply to you. 

For all the people that did give up and had given it time, this is likely what would have happened.

weight loss vs fat loss
The realities of fat loss vs. what the mind games the scale will play on you.

SOLUTION

So here is what you’re going to do now that you know about the suck.

YOU are going to calm down and be patient. Ask yourself, years from now after you’ve lost the weight, will you even care or remember if it took you a week or a year to lose the weight? Heck no.

You’ll just be glad you built the habits that allowed you to lose weight and maintain it for the rest of your life.

Usually, it’s the people who have the quick fat loss mentality that end up regaining all their lost weight plus more.

Not that aggressive dieting doesn’t work, because it most certainly does, but because a quick fat loss mentality usually leads people to extremely low-calorie levels and trying all sorts of crazy unsustainable gimmicks and protocols.

We’re after a lifestyle change, not a quick-fix.

So just how fast should you be expecting to lose fat?

How fast or slow you lose depends on where you are in your journey.

The more body fat you have to lose, the faster you can expect to lose; conversely, the leaner you are, a slower rate of loss is preferred as to minimize any muscle and/or strength loss.

That said: I like to set fat loss targets between 0.5 – 1% of your total body weight per week. If you're very overweight you can even get away with upwards of ~1.5% weight loss per week.

What’s great about using percentages is the rate of loss autoregulates itself as your bodyweight decreases.

For example.

Let’s look at Sara and Sam in the image below.

Sara weights 250 lbs so she can expect to lose about 1.25 – 2.5 pounds per week. On the other hand, Sam weights 150 lbs so she can expect to lose about .75 – 1.5 pounds per week.

not losing weight on keto rate of fat loss expectations
Remember, it's not about how fast you get there… it's that you get there AND stay there.

Reason # 2 – You're comparing yourself to others

Let’s be real, it’s just human nature for us to compare ourselves to others. I do it, you do it, Barbara Ann does it, and so does Bobby Lee.  It’s bad when comparing yourself turns to insecurity, envy, and discontent with yourself.

You can only control one person’s progress, and that’s your own.

The comparison trap is as old as humans have walked the earth. It’s even worse now with social media and having easy access to compare yourself with millions of others at the tip of your fingers.

I’ve literally come across studies that show a correlation with how much time is spent on social media with a rise in depression and envy.

Think about it, nobody posts their struggles, failures, spousal arguments, or kids acting out and being grounded.

People post made up photos of themselves, their kid receiving awards, and the best family vacation photos they could muster out of the whole vacation.

Heck, I even wonder if some of my friends work since the only thing they post on Facebook is pictures on vacation along some beach drinking a pina colada.   

Nobody knows what good is anymore because perfect became the new normal.

– Me

But I digress…

What I was trying to get at before getting sidetracked is  the more you look and compare yourself to others, the more you are likely to feel discontent with your own progress and jump from one diet to the next 

Truth is, you don’t know what Peggy Sue’s circumstances were. Maybe she’s just genetically superior, maybe she’s worked out consistently for the last 20 years, and who knows, maybe she simply has an easier time losing weight than you or I.


SOLUTION

Be aware of the situations that you find yourself playing the comparison game, social media is probably the biggest culprit of them all. Since I know you’ll do it anyway, use it as MOTIVATION instead of a way to nitpick at yourself.

And lastly, seek out advice and ask questions. The most successful people, dieting or not, are the ones who know how to ask the right questions and seek the correct answers.

There’s only one thing within your control, and that’s what you do.  So practice some patience, give the diet some time, and focus on you, not what everyone else is doing.


Reason #3 – You’re eating too damn much.

I don’t know who started it, but I get a comment nearly every day about it, can you guess what “it” is? The “it” I’m referring to is that calories don’t matter. They usually comment something along the lines of one of these:

  • It's a hormonal problem
  • It's due to insulin (which is a hormone btw)
  • It's about the correct macros

Inevitably followed up by:

  • Look up Dr. Fung
  • Look up Dr. Berg
  • Etc. etc. etc.

And yes, all of that may be true… up to a certain extent.

Can hormones make a difference in energy balance? Yes.

Will a hormonal response ever supersede an energy deficit? No.

Everything listed above does play a factor in weight loss AND those people they mention are indeed some smart individuals.

However, they take everything out of context and I’m almost certain if they asked their “gurus” if calories mattered they would tell them that they do, but of course, in addition to all of the other factors.

These zealots preaching it’s all about hormones or it’s all about controlling insulin totally miss the boat.

They’ve become so dogmatic in their approach that they mislead many people to believe they can eat however much they want as long as they eat some magical percentage of protein, carbs, and fats.  

In a perfect world, controlling insulin would control your hunger, and thus prevent you from overeating, possibly even undereating, thereby causing weight loss. This, along with making better food choices, is typically the case with all these said individuals along with fixing their previously poor diets.

What they’re failing to realize is that they’re in a calorie deficit, whether they believe it or not.

But this is far from a perfect world… and eating is as much a psychological thing as it is a physiological one. To tell someone they can eat all they want as long as they eat x or y percentage of fat or don’t eat any carbs and lose weight is ludicrous.

It’s much like the person who previously ate a relatively poor diet and decided to give veganism a try. They to, began to see some weight loss, maybe even lost all the weight they wanted.

Now they firmly believe a vegan diet is the only way to lose weight.  Correlation does not equal causation. 

Calories in vs. calories out is a myth. I've lost fat without being in a caloric deficit.

– Person who was unknowingly in a calorie deficit

Just because they don’t believe that calories matter nor counted them, AND also happened to lose weight does it make it any truer. I also believed in the tooth fairy and found a dollar under my pillow every time.

This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to count calories. Many individuals lose large amounts of weight switching to a ketogenic diet and not counting calories AT ALL.

However, chances are you landed here because you are not one of those lucky individuals.


SOLUTION

If you’ve never tracked calories before, I would highly encourage you to do so, If at least for a short while (3-4 weeks).

This means weighing and portioning out your food. Doing so will give you a better understanding of exactly how much you are eating and how it effects your progress.

NOTICE that I said for a short while… You don't have to track calories forever, but I think it's a VALUABLE skill that generates more awareness and makes you more conscious about food.

Granted, if you think this may make you neurotic about food then perhaps you shouldn't.

During this period, I encourage people to use an actual kitchen scale in addition to their measuring cups and spoons.  Using an actual scale may paint a clearer picture of what exactly a serving of a particular food looks like in actuality.

A classic example here is of a tablespoon of peanut butter which when weighed comes out to 16 grams (and about 100 calories).

If you were to “eyeball” and measure out a tablespoon of peanut butter then place it on the scale, it will invariably be more than 16 grams.

Combine the fact that the spoon is overfilled with licking the sides and underside of the spoon (cause hey… it’s on the tablespoon) it’s easy to get quite a bit more calories than you’re actually writing in your journal.

not losing weight PEANUT BUTTER difference
Over time this can easily add up to A LOT

Can you see how this would begin to add up with multiple spoonful’s a day and over the course of days, weeks, and months?

Sadly, even vegetables, which are often encouraged and considered ‘free foods’ on most diets, can be a problem. Due to hunger, some dieters eat enormous amounts of vegetables to fill themselves up, but that too can begin to add up.

There’s inevitably a few of you who will take this out of context and say I’m now advocating that vegetables are bad for you. Really guys?

As you can begin to see, it’s quite possible for smaller dieters, and especially females who may not have as much wiggle room in the calorie department to completely eliminate the deficit they assumed they were in.

Is weighing and measuring your food a pain in the ass? You bet.

Will this lead certain individuals to become obsessive and neurotic about food? Quite possiblly.

Just remember, what gets measured gets managed. If you’re not losing weight on keto as it is, what do you have to lose by weighing and measuring your food intake?

In some cases, it’s absolutely necessary to make sure how much you think you’re eating is in fact how much you are actually eating.

Now, assuming you are properly measuring and weighing your food and still not seeing any progress, try increasing your deficit by another 10%, whether through diet, exercise, or a combination of both.

Give this calorie level a go for a good 4 weeks or so before assuming it’s a bust. If there is still no progress to be had, try dropping another 10% and reassessing after 4 more weeks.

If there’s still no progress, then I would highly recommend you get some blood work done, not to be confused with donating blood, as there is likely some underlying issue or even take a break from dieting altogether if you've been at it for a LONG time.

That said, here are some resources to track and measure down below.

Websites for tracking

Apps for your mobile device

Recommended kitchen scales

  • OXO Stainless Steel Kitchen Scale * What I personally use due to the large weight capacity. The display also pulls out for when you have a big plate sitting on top that would normally hide the display on other scales.
  • Ozeri food scale – Bit more simple than the one above, but gets the job done.

Reason # 4 – You're not eating enough!

Now you’re thinking…

Wait a minute…

You just finished telling me I may be eating TOO much and now you’re telling me I may not be eating enough? What gives Steven?

Somehow, we’ve gotten it in our heads that if something works, then more is better. This is also the mentality when it comes to dieting. Well, if eating this much makes me lose weight then eating even less will make me lose weight faster.

And this is true, up till a certain point.

Studies support the idea that there is a threshold deficit allowing for maximum fat loss to occur with minimal side effects. Meaning, there is a point of diminishing returns when it comes to dieting.

At a certain point, for some individuals, you are actually causing more harm than good.

What is the point of diminishing returns?

It seems as deficits greater than ~25%, while leading to greater fat loss, is  unsustainable  for MOST individuals.

A few drawbacks to a large calorie deficit include:

  • Increased potential for muscle loss
  • Increased chance for binging
  • Doesn't teach long-term habits required to keep the weight off
  • May be hard to sustain due to hunger
  • Largest drop in energy expenditure *more on this later in the article.

Some pros of a large calorie deficit:

  • Faster rate of fat loss
  • Leaves plenty of room for error
  • Quick initial weight loss can provide positive reinforcement to keep going.

While resting metabolic rate doesn’t drop drastically as one might think when dieting, large deficits ( >25% ) usually lead to a decrease in a person’s daily activity, mainly due to fatigue and lethargy.

When people think their metabolism has somehow slowed down to that of a snail’s pace, it’s usually that they offset much of their supposed deficit with the fact that they simply aren’t moving as much.

This is a biggie, because what you do the other 23 hours of the day outside of the gym has a bigger impact in how many calories you expend versus the 30 – 60 minutes you spend in the gym.

Not losing weight on keto - exercise vs non exercise
See how this can play a more important role?

SOLUTION

A little caveat to this is that large calorie deficits DO work, I’m in no way saying that they don’t. In fact, there is evidence that suggests quite the opposite, BUT with the following inclusions:

  • Nutritional education
  • Behavior modification
  • Increased physical activity

While large deficits will work if you can sustain it, they likely won’t last unless there is some type of intervention implemented alongside as outlined above.

In the end, cutting calories too much often creates more problems than it solves, but that’s not to say there isn’t a downside to a small deficit either.

Deciding how much of a calorie deficit has a lot of considerations, all of which will depend on your goals, preferences, and tolerances. A deficit that’s appropriate for one person might end up being completely inappropriate for another.

A good rule of thumb is to stick to a deficit that allows you to lose ~ 0.5 – 1% of your bodyweight per week. Bigger individuals with more fat to lose can safely aim for the higher end (sometimes even higher) while leaner folks with less fat to lose should stick to the lower end.

You may give my keto macro calculator a shot for a great starting point with setting up your calorie deficit along with a custom macro breakdown based on your lifestyle and preferences.

If you want my personal take on it, diet aggressively as you can without losing muscle.

Because let’s face it, dieting sucks, and most people are impatient.

I’m of the mindset that one should eat MORE and move MORE versus the old adage of eat less move more.

What you should be aiming for is maximum FAT loss and not simply weight loss. This means you should be eating an adequate amount of protein and including some type of resistance training in addition to your diet.

AND, if you’ve never done any sort of weight / resistance training there’s a good chance you may be able to simultaneously build muscle and lose fat, a dieter’s dream. In which case, you may not even see a change on the scale since you are building muscle and losing fat at the same time.

Of course, if you’re dieting on too low of calories you’ll eliminate almost any chance of this occurring, so be smart.


Reason # 5 – Metabolic adaptation… and you're not moving enough.

I briefly explained this in the last section, but a major reason why people’s fat loss comes to a halt or they hit a plateau is due to metabolic adaptation. NOT DAMAGE.

You see, the body doesn’t like change. In fact, the body will do everything within its power to maintain a level of homeostasis.

What most people don’t realize is that the metabolism or TDEE (Total Daily Energy Expenditure) is composed of four main components.

Resting metabolic rate (RMR)

Your resting metabolic rate is essentially the number of calories to keep your body functioning at rest. This applies to basic functions like breathing and circulating blood throughout your body.

RMR makes up the majority of calories MOST people burn… unless you’re an ultramarathoner or an ironman triathlete. RMR accounts for around 60 – 70% in your average adult.

Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT)

Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis is all the activity that isn’t intentional. Meaning, everything outside of your gym or CrossFit session.

This includes everything from fidgeting and walking your dog to washing the dishes and walking to your car.

NEAT accounts for somewhere around 30% of your total daily energy expenditure.

Physical Activity (PA)

Physical activity is intentional exercise. This will vary individual to individual depending on the type of exercise you perform and the duration in which you perform it.

For most of us who may exercise 3 – 6x per week for 30 minutes to an hour this accounts for around 10 – 15% of our total daily energy expenditure.

As you can see, this doesn’t make up a huge chunk of your total activity and the reason why you may have heard the phrase “you can’t outrun a bad diet.”

Because you can’t… at least for most people. Again, if you are pounding the pavement as an ultra-marathoner or ironman triathlete, perhaps you can, but that’s not most people.

Thermic Effect of Food (TEF)

Thermic Effect of Food is the number of calories required to digest your food. It surprisingly takes up a good amount of energy to digest that meal, but it only accounts for 5 – 10% of your total daily energy expenditure.

Weight loss will impact each one of these components to a certain degree, but the biggest impacts tend to be on RMR and NEAT.


SOLUTION

RMR: As you lose weight and get smaller, you simply won’t require as many calories as you once did. Makes sense, right? A smaller person requires less calories than a bigger person, even if that bigger person used to be you 15 pounds ago.

This is why, on average, men have an easier time losing weight than women. Not only do they carry more muscle, but they are larger in general.

So what do we do here? Well, we adjust our diet as we lose weight and get leaner. If you’re not losing weight on keto and hit a plateau, you may just need to make an adjustment in how much you’re eating.

There are no hard or fast rules on when to adjust but reassess your caloric needs after every 10 – 15 pounds lost.

However, if you’re still within the first 4 weeks of starting your diet, don’t make any adjustments.

Your body takes some time to ‘catch up’ to the deficit and waiting this amount of time is usually a good time frame to have a clearer picture on what’s really happening.

Just how much should you adjust your diet?

A 5 – 10% reduction in calories is a good starting point. Assuming carbohydrate intake is already really low, and protein is moderately set, I would remove these calories from your fat intake.

If you are still eating a decent amount of net carbohydrates, you can reduce those further or do a combination of carbohydrates and fat.

Remember that carbohydrates are 4 calories per gram while fat is 9 calories per gram.

I wrote all about keto weight loss and how to set up your diet, track progress, and adjust.

NEAT: As you diet, your body senses the change and fights back by decreasing your energy and making you feel more tired. As a result of this tiredness, you begin to move less and less, even without you realizing.

Conversely, NEAT tends to increase as weight does.

Since NEAT makes up nearly 30% of our total calorie expenditure, the second biggest slice of the pie, this can greatly affect weight loss or even stop it dead in its tracks.

To remedy this, I would encourage setting a daily target for movement OUTSIDE of the gym. For this, fitness wearables like a Fitbit or a simple pedometer can be a great tool to track a minimum number of steps per day.

Alternatively, you can do something like choose a length of time.

In practice it may look like:

10,000 steps per day

or

45 minutes of light walking every morning

OR

Just be mindful if you're vegging out on the couch watching Netflix because you're too tired to do anything else.

This is a great time to do all the other stuff you've might been neglecting like mowing your lawn, cleaning the house, or walking your pup.

Physical Activity: As mentioned earlier in the article, I’m of the eat MORE move MORE mentality vs the old adage of eat less move more.

While we can’t outrun a bad diet, feeding your body the right amount and not starving yourself will allow you to train harder and thus preserve or build muscle and burn more calories.

It goes without saying, just like your RMR decreases due to the weight loss and the fact you are now a smaller human being, so does the calorie expenditure when performing the same type of exercise.

Example: Running a mile at 180 pounds burns more calories than running a mile at 160 pounds.

TEF: The thermic effect of food is the amount of energy required to digest the food you eat. It goes without saying that if you eat less food then less calories will be expended.

While this can be influenced only so much on a calorie deficit, the biggest impact on TEF will be your protein intake as it’s the costliest macronutrient to digest.

Studies also suggest that the TEF of highly processed foods is significantly less than their whole-food counterparts.

Another checkmark for adding in more whole foods, especially protein.

To summarize the metabolic adaptation section

Your body begins to downregulate its resting metabolic rate, but probably not as much as most people would think.

The majority of the adaptation comes in the form of reducing your Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT) which makes up around ~30% of your daily caloric expenditure and even upwards of 45% in HIGHLY active individuals (think of a construction or farmer heaving heavy things around all day for 8 hours at a time).

Therefore, things you can do to counteract the adaption are as follows:

  • If fat loss has truly come to a halt after a certain caloric intake has been maintained for  ~4 weeks then reduce total calories by 5 – 10% taking them from fat and/or carbohydrate grams
  • Have a trackable minimum daily activity goal outside of the gym i.e. 10,000 steps
  • Don’t eat so little as to not have enough energy to train hard in the gym
  • Eat an adequate amount of protein ~1 gram per pound of lean body mass

Reason #6 – Water retention

THE YAY, OH CRAP MONTH.

This is, in part, the reason many people think they’ve stalled when in reality they are still losing weight, especially within the first month of starting their ketogenic diet.

 People often confuse the rapid weight loss during the first week of a ketogenic diet with actual fat loss.  While some of it may be fat, the majority of the initial weight loss is really just extra bloat and water being flushed from your body.

During the second, third, and fourth weeks the body inevitably puts back on some of that water weight and masks any real fat loss that you may see on the scale.

This is another reason why using only the scale to measure and track fat loss isn’t the best method and why I say to usually give your body ~4 weeks for the calorie deficit to catch up and your body to level out.

An example of what it may look like:

YAY!

JoAnn weighs 170 pounds when first starting her ketogenic diet. At the end of week 1, JoAnn weighs 163 pounds for a whopping 7 pounds of scale weight lost.

In reality, of the 7 pounds maybe 1 – 1.5 pounds of that was actual fat loss. Meaning, the other 5.5 – 6 pounds was mainly water weight.

OH CRAP…

During the second week JoAnn’s body begins to normalize and actually regains 2 pounds of water weight back but drops an additional 1 pound of fat.

Now, if we were simply looking at the scale JoAnn would freak out and assume no fat was lost. Not only that, but that some fat was gained. This usually leads someone to drastically cut their intake even more or give up altogether.

OH CRAP

NOT LOSING WEIGHT ON KETO, MAYBE IT’S WATER RETENTION

In addition, diet and exercise act as a form of stress on the body. The longer you diet, the more stress begins to accumulate. As a result, due to a myriad of factors including a rise in cortisol, people start retaining more water,

ESPECIALLY women.

NOT LOSING ON KETO WEIGHT VS FAT

WEIGHT LOSS VS FAT LOSS GRAPHIC

Also, there is this phenomenon known as the “Whoosh” effect. As you start to lose fat, your fat cells begin to fill up with water as a ‘placeholder’ waiting for the cell to fill up with fat again. Fat cells can hold onto this water for days… maybe even weeks. Then, boom, almost overnight, you drop 4 pounds and look leaner in the mirror.

not losing weight on keto whoosh
Not always the case, but definitely happens more often than you think

SOLUTION

  • Chill out
  • Be Patient
  • De-stress yourself

Meditate

I know what you’re thinking, but don’t knock it till you try it. There is proven research on the benefits of meditation for health, especially stress and stress related conditions like IBS, PTSD, and fibromyalgia.

Hang out with friends

When people diet they sometimes start to become a bit antisocial, especially since many social events tend to be centered around eating and drinking.

I get it, I’m right there with you… why put yourself amidst all that temptation as it’s not conducive towards your goals right?

Still, we are social beings at heart. Try to plan an activity that doesn’t revolve around food or use this as an excellent time to practice mindful eating choices when eating out.

Easier said than done, I know.

Go for a walk.

Depending how you go about it, this can be a Zen like meditation as well for people.

Use the walk as a time to reflect, think about life, and enjoy mother nature. This can also double up as part of your 10,000 steps you told yourself you would start doing 😉

Get more sleep

Remember the last time you didn’t get any sleep? Bet you felt like crap, weren’t productive, and felt more stressed.

Journaling

We have so many thoughts that run through our head on a daily basis. I don’t remember where I heard it, but we the average person has somewhere around 70,000 thoughts per day.

Getting your thoughts out of your head and onto paper can free up some of that mental baggage that weighs you down and possibly even affecting your sleep.

Another great journaling technique is to keep a gratitude journal. There is so much to be said for remembering and being grateful for even the little things in life we take for granted on a daily basis.

Also, every time you find yourself saying ‘I have to’ change it to ‘I get to…’. Basically, do whatever makes you happy and helps you de-stress.


Reason #7 – You're putting a stick of butter in your coffee

This goes back to the third reason, you’re simply eating too damn much. If you’re drinking keto coffee, bulletproof coffee, or whatever the cool kids are calling it these days, then this is an easy 200 – 300 calories you can eliminate from your diet.

Often, people use a keto coffee as a meal replacement for breakfast and to help with hunger. Here’s the point everyone who has a counter argument is missing, you’re not losing weight on keto as it is and that’s why you’re here reading this.

Eliminating fat from your morning coffee is a lot easier than reducing your food intake or increasing your activity level for most people.


SOLUTION

I’d like to challenge you, if this applies, to simply drink the coffee black or only with your MCT oil. Just like when you replaced your breakfast with keto coffee, now all you have to do is eliminate some or all of the add-ons you’re dumping into it.

However, if you TRULY believe this keeps you from overeating and is a net positive in your fat loss efforts, by all means you do you.

Of course, you can always keep it in and eat less food later.

Or move more to compensate.

not losing weight on keto burn one bpc
Hey, if you need it then you need it.

Reason #8 – Health conditions and medications

There are certain health conditions and medications that may affect fat loss. Conditions such as:

  • PCOS
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Menopause | Not really a disease or disorder, but it does trigger some profound changes within a woman’s body.

Medications including:

  • Diabetic drugs like insulin
  • Antipsychotic drugs
  • Antidepressant drugs
  • Drugs for epilepsy
  • Birth control

Sometimes there are factors beyond our control, at least until we know about them and can be proactive towards it. If you’ve been consistent with your diet, training hard, making the right adjustments, and still not losing fat, it may be time to consult your doctor and get some bloodwork done.


SOLLUTION

I am not a doctor and not qualified to give you any sound medical advice, but you may try the following.

  • Discuss with your doctor if there are any other options in terms of medications or treatments. There may be an alternative, but that’s not always the case.
  • You may have to just deal with the cards your dealt, so do your best to control what you can and leave the rest to the powers that be.

If you email or DM me I can give you my opinion, but it would be just that… my opinion.


Reason #9 – You don't need to lose fat

Is it possible that you really don’t have as much fat to lose as you think? We can be our own worst critics at times and I can definitely relate to this.

In fact, as I am writing this I get a message on Instagram from a female telling me she’s stuck and needs to lose more weight to hit her goal. Mind you, she’s 125 pounds currently, down from 160, and she wants to get to 115 pounds.

AND… SHE’S 5’9!

 Much of the time, people really need to just add more muscle to their frame rather than try and shed any more weight.  The more muscle you have on your frame,  the better you’re going to look when you do lose the fat.

You may even simply look better without losing any fat and putting on muscle.

Ladies, I’m talking to you especially!

And you don’t need to worry about getting “bulky” cause guess what… it’s pretty dang hard to put on muscle. Walk into any gym and look at all the guys who actually do want to put on muscle and look big but aren’t.

It’s not as simple as picking up some weights a few times a week.

Take a look at the below photo as an example. Clearly, Bale has a lower body fat percentage and weighs less in The Machinist compared to his role in American Psycho.

But which look do you prefer? Can you see how having some muscle despite having a bit more fat is more aesthetically pleasing? After all, that is the goal correct? To look and feel better?

I can almost guarantee you that he felt better on the right than he did on the left.


Reason #10 – You're gaining muscle

Ok, so if you’re certain you are in a calorie deficit and DEFINITELY not overeating because you’re measuring and weighing food like I asked you to, perhaps there’s a chance you may be gaining muscle.

If you’re not losing weight on keto and doing everything correctly, perhaps somebody is smiling down on you from above.

 Gaining muscle is actually a GOOD thing, even if that means your scale weight stays the same or the off chance going up. 

Granted, this is usually the case if you’ve just started working out or perhaps switched your diet from one with very little protein to something more moderate.

This is also one of the reasons why using only the scale to track progress will usually lead you astray.


SOLUTION

The scale is only one tool you should be using. Other tools to give you a better picture of your progress are:

  • Tracking body measurements
  • Progress photos
  • Strength in the gym
  • How clothes fit

All of the above will serve you better in tracking your progress.

Tracking body measurements

If your waist measurement has decreased or stayed the same, but your arms, legs, and/or chest measurements have increased, good job, you’ve gained muscle.

Progress photos

Look slimmer despite the scale having not budged or gone up? Seeing some extra definition or lines that were not there previously? Good job, you’ve gained muscle.

Probably best to compare photos on a bi-monthly or monthly basis to have a better comparison.

Strength in the gym

For beginners, you can do almost ANYthing when first starting and it’s enough stimulus to put on some muscle.

However, there is also a correlation with an increase in strength and an increase in muscle size (not always, but for most beginners and intermediate lifters)

How clothes fit

Not losing weight on keto but your pants are looser in the waist? Well, that’s a good thing.


Reason #11 – You're not a finisher

Are you the person that starts many diets, but you never stick with them? Are you what I like to refer to as a ‘chronic dieter?’

Maybe you’re always dieting for some occasion or perhaps you constantly end your diet only to start it again a week later. Maybe you slip up after a couple days or a couple weeks and figure F*** it I’ll start again on Monday.

After all, diets can only start on Mondays, right? Jk

This state of perpetual dieting is neither healthy or conducive to ever reaching your goals. Quite the opposite, it’s very unhealthy, and leads to a disordered way of eating.

The constant dieting approach is what causes many people to ride the high and low train of calorie restriction followed by binging after you realize that you can’t adhere to it any longer.

As a result, you spin your wheels making no progress over the long term.


SOLUTION

If this resonates with you, perhaps it’s time to stop dieting and give your body AND mind a break from the constant rollercoaster you’ve been on.

Raise your calories back up to maintenance, eat until satiated, and stop worry about dropping weight for once. The goal for you should be trying to find some normalcy with your eating.

Instead, focus on your training and performance. Heck, focus on other parts of your life that you may have been neglecting while trying to lose weight.

Yes, you may put back on some fat during this period, but it’s something that may be necessary to propel future progress over the long-term.


All good things must come to an end

There you have it folks. If you’ve made it this far, then kudos to you. I really hope you’ve been able to pinpoint one, if not a couple of reasons why you may not have had the success you had hoped for.

If you’re not losing weight on keto, I’m almost certain one of these is the culprit.

As I stated in the beginning, there’s just so much nonsense in this space when it comes to fat loss. I’ve literally read reasons on other sites why you’re not losing weight on keto that range from eating too much protein to not actually being in ketosis.

First off:

  • You don’t HAVE TO be in ketosis to lose weight
  • It’s not that you’re eating too much protein (or even carbs), you’re eating too much in general. In fact, there are a plethora of studies that show nothing but positives when protein is increased.

You’ll come across these kinds of “tips” on almost every keto site you come across and it’s just plain misleading people, but hopefully not you because you’re here now!

Just know that you don’t have to literally be in ketosis 24/7 or even at all to lose weight.

There are definitely plenty of pros to a ketogenic diet for both health and weight loss, which is why myself and many others choose to adopt the lifestyle.

BUT don’t let anyone tell you that the only way to lose weight is to be in ketosis, or that you’re not losing weight on keto because you’re not really in ketosis, because it’s untrue and very misleading.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this article and found some value in it.


Would love to hear your thoughts or maybe if a lightbulb went off. Simply let me know in the comments down below.
Steven
Steven

Founder of The Art Of Keto.

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