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Here’s that ONE mistake that people make with keto diet

by Tina Sendin September 17, 2019

Here’s that ONE mistake that people make with keto diet

TL;DR Dirty keto diet is the classic case of having a cake and eating it too. It could make you lose weight, but it’s not really the proper way of doing a keto diet. In fact, it could do your body more harm than good.


Keto diet, the diet of the hour.

It’s hard to miss in any conversations around wellness and losing weight. Almost always, success stories would come up. Recipes have abounded on Instagram and lifestyle blogs.

It has taken not just America, but the whole world, by storm. Only a mere advertising slogan before, the “lose-weight-fast” dream has turned into reality for many people.

Keto diet, the high-fat-low-carb plan, is turning everyone’s bodies into a fat-burning machine.

But is everyone doing it right?


What is keto diet?

Keto diet is a meal plan that involves a drastic reduction in carbs intake and eating more foods rich in fat. Doing so will put the body into ketosis, which makes it an efficient fat-burning machine, providing more energy and causing weight loss over time. The ultimate goal of a keto diet is to metabolize the fats, instead of sugar or glucose.

According to Dr. Oz, the specific breakdown is to have “75 percent fat, 20 percent protein, and 5 percent carbs” in your daily meals. [1] He recommends focusing on whole, natural ingredients, like:

  • Avocado, olive oil, and nuts for fat
  • Lean meat, fish, legumes for protein
  • Vegetables like bell pepper, cauliflower, spinach and zucchini for carbohydrates


What are the different types of keto diet?

Not all keto diets are created equal. There are intentionally healthy ones, and there are those that seem more like having the cake and eating it too (literally and figuratively).

Bulletproof has listed down the various ways people are doing their own keto diets: [2]

  • Standard keto, which involves having an intensely low carb (less than 50 grams of net carbs a day) daily. Some legends have as few as 20 grams per day. Talk about commitment!
  • Cyclical keto, which is a high-fat, very low-carb (less than 50 grams of net carbs per day) diet five to six days a week. On day seven, you can “carbo-load,” at least up to approximately 150 grams.
  • Targeted keto is pretty much your standard keto diet, only this one will involve extra carbs 30 minutes to an hour before a high-intensity workout. This is perfect for you if you find yourself not having enough energy during workout. The added carbs will boost your performance and you can return to ketosis post-workout.
  • Moderate keto, which involves a fat intake plus net carbs of 100-150 grams a day. Women are said to do well in this kind of diet as restricting carbs can mess up with hormones.
  • Dirty keto is also similar to a standard keto diet, except that it doesn’t matter where the source of fats, proteins, and carbs are. It’s so tempting for many keto followers because they could still lose weight even when they eat pizza, bacon, and cheeseburgers as long as they fall within the same percentages as the standard keto. Too good to be true? Keep reading.


THE DIRTY KETO: How NOT to do it

That last kind, the “Dirty Keto”, lives up to its name. It’s when you lose weight, but deep within you lives an unhealthy system.

Wellness physician Dr. Josh Axe explains that while dirty keto diet maintains the same macros – 75 percent fat, 20 percent protein, and 5 percent carbohydrates – it doesn’t bring the same amount of nutrients as the whole, natural kind. [1]

Cheese, burger, bacon, pizza – they may have the same fat-protein-carbohydrates component but come on, in what universe are they considered healthy?

This kind of diet will do more harm than good to the body. Dr. Oz explains that most of the fat found in dirty keto is “filled with saturated fat which can lead to serious health problems like heart disease.” [1]


Keto flu is caused by dirty keto

Despite its name, keto flu is not your usual flu. It’s more like the initial side effects as you’re just starting out with keto diet, or the negative symptoms you may experience if you’re on a dirty keto.

According to Healthline, keto flu “includes poor energy and mental function, increased hunger, sleep issues, nausea, digestive discomfort and decreased exercise performance.” [3]

Keto flu happens in a dirty keto diet because of all the sodium and preservatives from processed foods. This causes the bloated feeling – not just momentarily – but the entire time you’re on a dirty keto diet.


Aside from being bloated, eating unhealthy foods can lead to dehydration and constipation, sometimes coupled with dull hair and skin!

According to Dr. Axe, even if you’re successfully losing weight with dirty keto, the long-term consequences may come haunting you. A dirty keto diet may lead to inflammation and nutrient deficiency.

It may also be counter-productive in the long-term, as all the weight you’ve lost could be gained right back.



Both Dr. Axe and Dr. Oz recommend getting rid of short cuts and doing the keto diet the right way. This may be done by focusing on wholesome, natural foods. This isn’t to say that you’ll have to bid farewell to bacon and cheeseburger. But eating them sparingly and making sure that healthy foods always outweigh the naughty ones will help you achieve your keto diet objectives.

A dirty keto diet isn’t the only thing people do to mess up their keto diet. Watch this space for part 2 of this article: 8 mistakes people make in keto diets.






Tina Sendin
Tina Sendin


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