The popular low-carb diets (such as Atkins or Paleo) modify a true keto diet. But they come with the same risks if you overdo it on fats and proteins and lay off the carbs. So why do people follow the diets? "They're everywhere, and people hear anecdotally that they work," McManus says. Theories about short-term low-carb diet success include lower appetite because fat burns slower than carbs. "But again, we don't know about the long term," she says. "And eating a restrictive diet, no matter what the plan, is difficult to sustain. Once you resume a normal diet, the weight will likely return."
Hi Cyn, The numbers are general guidelines but will vary depending on many factors, such as activity level, insulin resistance, weight and more. There is no single magic number, just conventional recommendations that are a good starting point. I will have a macro calculator coming soon that will help determine what is best for each person, but even then it’s an approximation. The only way to know for sure is to test. If keto is your goal, it’s usually best to start lower and then see if you can stay in ketosis when increasing.
The modified Atkins diet reduces seizure frequency by more than 50% in 43% of patients who try it and by more than 90% in 27% of patients.[18] Few adverse effects have been reported, though cholesterol is increased and the diet has not been studied long term.[48] Although based on a smaller data set (126 adults and children from 11 studies over five centres), these results from 2009 compare favourably with the traditional ketogenic diet.[18]
This study examined the relationship between low-carbohydrate diets, all-cause death, deaths from coronary heart disease, and cancer in 24,825 people. Compared to those in the highest carbohydrate group, those who ate the lowest carbohydrates had a 32 percent higher risk of all-cause death over six years. In addition, risks of death from heart disease and cancer were increased by 51 percent and 35 percent, respectively.
A study with an intent-to-treat prospective design was published in 1998 by a team from the Johns Hopkins Hospital[20] and followed-up by a report published in 2001.[21] As with most studies of the ketogenic diet, no control group (patients who did not receive the treatment) was used. The study enrolled 150 children. After three months, 83% of them were still on the diet, 26% had experienced a good reduction in seizures, 31% had had an excellent reduction, and 3% were seizure-free.[Note 7] At 12 months, 55% were still on the diet, 23% had a good response, 20% had an excellent response, and 7% were seizure-free. Those who had discontinued the diet by this stage did so because it was ineffective, too restrictive, or due to illness, and most of those who remained were benefiting from it. The percentage of those still on the diet at two, three, and four years was 39%, 20%, and 12%, respectively. During this period, the most common reason for discontinuing the diet was because the children had become seizure-free or significantly better. At four years, 16% of the original 150 children had a good reduction in seizure frequency, 14% had an excellent reduction, and 13% were seizure-free, though these figures include many who were no longer on the diet. Those remaining on the diet after this duration were typically not seizure-free, but had had an excellent response.[21][22]

Hello, I can’t have any actual sugars in my diet. So when your label at the end says 1 sugar etc is that for the “fake” sweeteners in each recipe? Or real sugars? I can have ones like Splenda, truvia, etc. It’s only so specific for me because it’s to keep all sugar away and control my seizures. These desserts sound amazing and seem to fit my diet till the sugar part on the label.


I have spent weeks reading and learning about the Keto diet plan, downloading random recipes that my husband might even try, and have been overwhelmed with all the information. I was pleased to find your system and how organized everything seems to be. The only question I have is will I be able to “temporarily suspend” my subscription if I find there are more recipes than I have time to prepare. I want to only do about 3 per week and repeat them as leftovers, since I have very little time after working a 12-hour shift, to do much cooking. Once I “catch up,” I would reinstate my subscription. Is that an option? Looking forward to trying out your program.
I tried to make the egg noodles and it was a total failure. Followed the directions without any substitutions.’ Not sure what happened. The texture was off. It was nearly impossible to remove from the pan and I used the latex mat and sprayed as well. It was mushy and seemed undercooked. I was disappointed because I had made the sauce and was ready to eat. It looked like the mixture was set and cooked, Perhaps my oven is off.
Hi Judy. Some people can enjoy small amounts of fruit on a low carb keto diet while others can not. I always use fruit as a garnish and stick to 1 ounce at any given time. I choose the smallest fruits I can find because it tricks me into thinking that there is more. If I enjoy a little apple, I make those slices as thin as I can and it probably doesn’t even equate to an 8th of a small apple. If I shared photos of just plain porridge, with a spoon in it, it would not be appetizing to look at. As with everything in life, use common sense and make the decisions that are best for you. I offer subs and ideas in the posts and recipes. Enjoy the recipes. -Kim
My 1st attempt & it was delish w/unsweetened organic coconut milk.Had no hazelnuts & only half the amount of almonds so I substituted extra pecans. Used unground flax & also added additional 2 tbs ground flax for more fiber. Added 1 tbs vanilla. Used a combo of sweeteners: Eryth, Xylitol & Stevia. Next time will grind ingredients separately to get a more chunky result. 

Despite “cereal” being often associated with “carbs,” these days there are plenty of low carb cereals available. Remember that milk has naturally occurring sugars, which are carbs, so be sparing in how much milk you put on your cereal if you want to cut even more carbs. You can also opt for hot cereals – plain oatmeal is actually one of the best whole grain, low carb choices out there – if you do not like plain cereal and milk. The five brands above provide particularly good options in their low carb counts along with high fiber and protein. Head to your nearest supermarket today to find some great low carb cereals!
For those wanting paleo donuts, some people are okay with erythritol since it’s a natural sweetener. If you aren’t, you can make these with coconut sugar if that’s more paleo-friendly for you. They just won’t be low carb or sugar-free, but will be paleo. If you just need gluten-free but don’t care about the sugar-free part, try gluten-free cinnamon sugar donuts.
I’m just starting this today. My intent is to be keto, but at the very least low carb. The biggest obstacle is that I’m vegetarian, so I have to eliminate the meat section. I plan on continuing with limited cheese and will look at tofu options. But my question is actually about olives! I understand they are low carb, but I buy in bulk and so there is no label to refer to. Is there a standard of net carbs you can advise for large green olives (stuffed with pimento) and Kalamata olives (for greek salads). thanks! Lois
A systematic review in 2018 looked at 16 studies on the ketogenic diet in adults. It concluded that the treatment was becoming more popular for that group of patients, that the efficacy in adults was similar to children, the side effects relatively mild. However, many patients gave up with the diet, for various reasons, and the quality of evidence inferior to studies on children. Health issues include high levels of low-density lipoprotein, high total cholesterol, and weight loss.[24]
This is a wealth of information. My husband and I are starting the keto diet tomorrow and I knew nothing about it. When I sat down to look up information about it, I found this. Thank you! This is everything I need to know in one place. We are not as healthy as we’d like to be and I am optimistic this will help us obtain our goals, along with an exercise plan.
^ Freeman JM, Vining EP, Pillas DJ, Pyzik PL, Casey JC, Kelly LM. The efficacy of the ketogenic diet—1998: a prospective evaluation of intervention in 150 children. Pediatrics. 1998 Dec;102(6):1358–63. doi:10.1542/peds.102.6.1358. PMID 9832569. https://web.archive.org/web/20040629224858/http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/press/1998/DECEMBER/981207.HTM Lay summary]—JHMI Office of Communications and Public Affairs. Updated 7 December 1998. Cited 6 March 2008.
The popular belief that high-fat diets cause obesity and several other diseases such as coronary heart disease, diabetes, and cancer has not been observed in recent epidemiological studies. Studies carried out in animals that were fed high-fat diets did not show a specific causal relationship between dietary fat and obesity. On the contrary, very-low-carbohydrate and high-fat diets such as the ketogenic diet have shown to beneficial to weight loss.
People claiming huge benefits of these supplements – despite the lack of solid scientific support – may sometimes have a financial reason to believe in the supplements. Some of these products are sold under a multi-level marketing arrangement, where sales people are paid based on commission. For example, the company Prüvit sells drinkable ketones, called KETO//OS with a multi-level marketing structure.
If you love eggplant, this recipe’s for you. If you don’t love eggplant yet, you will after whipping up this pasta-free dish. It comes together quickly for a lasagna that’s got all the flavor of the familiar version without the carbs. It’s also insanely flexible: peel or don’t peel the eggplant and make the slices as thick (or thin) as you like. Use jarred pasta sauce to speed things up even more.
I was doing LCHF (under 20 carbs most days) , Type II diabetic on a little insulin, After less than 3 mos I brought my A1C from 10.9 down to 7.1…….off to a great start. Now…..I am not only diabetic, I recently had open heart surgery (quadruple bypass),meaning “cardiac diet”. Do you know of any diabetic/cardiac people that are doing Keto? Curious about high fat for cardiac. (FYI: My Doctors are following me closely so know what I’m doing.)
Hi Kathy, I would persevere with coconut flour. Many people say it doesn’t work like regular flour, and while that may be true, I have learned to work with it. I ensure I use enough eggs, enough sweetener and flavours or enough salt and spices to overpower the subtle coconut flour taste. I have a whole new category in my recipe finder just for coconut flour recipes. Wy not give may flourless berry sponge a try to begin with, I love it and my kids make it all the time, even as cupcakes too.
Hi Carleen, I wouldn’t recommend unblanched almond flour. It might be ok but the texture will be much worse than using finely ground blanched. I haven’t tried the recipe with flax but I expect that it will work better with psyllium, which provides that chewy bread texture and flax doesn’t do that. If you don’t want to use coconut oil, I’d recommend butter or ghee over vegetable oils. The almond flour biscuits should work fine as toppings.

However, replacing high carb flours like all-purpose flour, wheat flour, corn flour, and rice flour with low-carb flour is not as simple as just using one for the other. Due to the difference in composition between high-carb and low-carb flours, you will need to use different amounts of low-carb flour together with other essential ingredients that you don’t typically find in traditional baking recipes like psyllium husk, xanthan gum, and protein powder.
This study examined the relationship between low-carbohydrate diets, all-cause death, deaths from coronary heart disease, and cancer in 24,825 people. Compared to those in the highest carbohydrate group, those who ate the lowest carbohydrates had a 32 percent higher risk of all-cause death over six years. In addition, risks of death from heart disease and cancer were increased by 51 percent and 35 percent, respectively.

I really appreciate this article. I have done low Carb for the most part for over 15 years and was able to keep my weight down. Now that I have gone through menopause is just keeps getting harder. I try doing keto but tend to fall off the wagon a lot and go back to low Carb or Weight Watchers. Simple ideas would be great. I think some keto bloggers make it seem that you have to create difficult recipes. Thanks for all you do.
Moreover, two recent meta-analyses sought to investigate the effect of LCD on weight loss and cardiovascular disease risk. Sackner-Bernstein et al. (19) compared LCD to LF, among overweight and obese men and women. The authors found a significantly greater effect of weight loss in the LCD vs. the LF diets (-8.2 kg vs. -5.9 kg). The impact of diet on cardiovascular risk factors was split, with LCD resulting in significantly greater improvements in HDL cholesterol and triglycerides, while the LF resulted in significantly greater improvements in LDL and total cholesterol. From this the authors concluded that LCD were a viable alternative to LF diets and recommended “dietary recommendations for weight loss should be revisited to consider this additional evidence of the benefits of [low] CHO diets.” A significant limitation of this meta-analysis, however, was the authors’ definition of low-carbohydrate as a daily CHO consumption less than 120 grams. This value, while well below the standard recommendation of daily CHO consumption, still far exceeds the strict recommendation of KD (≤50 g/day), therefore the results of this meta-analysis must be approached with caution.
Then on the nutrition label, it reads, Low carb. Also the nutrition label does not list as a category, the carb count. All nutrition labels that read “Low Carb” would have a line item for the carbs, even if its <1g. Although, I personally have never seen a label that reads Low Carb as part of the nutrition label it's self, maybe in the ad area though.
Regardless of the reason you switched to a low carb diet, it’s important to be mindful of your daily macros and caloric intake. Watch alcohol intake because it is additional, and empty, calories and will hinder you reaching your goals. Alcohol metabolization stalls fat burning until it’s out of your system. Something we expand on further in our Guide to Keto Alcohol.

This keto granola can be made in big batches and stored for use during the week, but it takes just a couple of minutes to throw it together so can be made fresh each morning. This makes a perfect energy-rich start to the day if you are no-sugar, and the slow release of energy will boost your system till lunch. Serve with nut milk of your choice – almond milk or coconut milk work well here.
Participants returned every other week for 16 weeks for further diet counseling and medication adjustment. When a participant neared half the weight loss goal or experienced cravings, he or she was advised to increase carbohydrate intake by approximately 5 g per day each week as long as weight loss continued. Participants could choose 5 g carbohydrate portions from one of the following foods each week: salad vegetables, low-carbohydrate vegetables, hard or soft cheese, nuts, or low-carbohydrate snacks. Diabetes medication adjustment was based on twice daily glucometer readings and hypoglycemic episodes, while diuretic and other anti-hypertensive medication adjustments were based on orthostatic symptoms, blood pressure, and lower extremity edema.

I do not use the VLC mix to make yeast breads. I have recipes at the blog for cookies, cupcakes, biscuits, and crepes using this mix. I have dozens of recipes in various stages of testing that use this mix. Some of my favorites are quick breads and muffins and cookies. Cake type recipes (muffins, small loaves of bread, cupcakes, cake, etc.) really turn out well with this mix. Let me know how some other dishes turn out for you! Thanks!
Well, I am going to give this another try. I have great difficulty in eating greens , or drinking them, also I am not fond of fats, years and years of low fat diets have totally screwed my metabolism,and taste buds. I will read this page every day to keep my mind focused. Start tomorrow when I get up …… I work nights which can cause me problems as well. When I tried this diet before, I got terrible cramp, now I realise I wasn’t drinking enough water. Anyway.here goes.
Don’t be intimidated by this whole new world of low carb flour alternatives, it’s not as scary as it sounds. My advice to new low carb bakers is to never go it alone. Always start with some tried and true recipes to get a feel for these new ingredients. Avail yourself of all the Internet has to offer, as there are so many great resources and recipe writers. Once you have a better understanding of how your ingredients behave, you can start to improvise. And if you’re at all like me, once you start, you will never be able to stop.
Place sheet pan in a preheated oven at 475°F and lower heat to 350°F. Bake for 5 to 8 minutes. Watch closely as you need to avoid overcooking. If small bubbles start to appear, lower heat to 300°F and continue baking for 2 to 3 minutes until all sides and center are done. (You can test for doneness just like testing a cake with a toothpick, if you wish).
Hi Kathy, Almond flour doesn’t rise very much, but if they didn’t at all, it might be that you need newer baking powder. Falling apart is also likely due to the baking time I had in the original recipe, and I’ve updated it for a better result. Check the post for new tips! Cookies sound like an interesting idea, too, though I think the batter might be too liquid to form them.
I tried to make the egg noodles and it was a total failure. Followed the directions without any substitutions.’ Not sure what happened. The texture was off. It was nearly impossible to remove from the pan and I used the latex mat and sprayed as well. It was mushy and seemed undercooked. I was disappointed because I had made the sauce and was ready to eat. It looked like the mixture was set and cooked, Perhaps my oven is off.
Praise God, Brenda for your success! You look fabulous and show your beauty inside and out. Thank you for the encouragement. I, too, have experimented with both low carb and keto for years. I am your age and I understand the “food journey,” which leads to better health and overall well being. I have fibromyalgia and other immune disorders and have found that keto is best for me, as well in terms of energy, pain, and weight loss/management. I exercise daily and weight train in a fasted state with no problem. I fast regualarly, not eating for 14-19 hours, and I am not hangry nor hungry. I truly believe intermittent fasting, a keto diet, and exercise are the keys to true success for weight loss and maintance. Thank you for sharing your story, pictures, and delicious recipes. Most of all thank you for being an inspiration and building up your followers. Keep pressing on! God bless you, Amy
On the other hand, the types of foods you’ll avoid eating on the keto, low-carb food plan are likely the same ones you are, or previously were, accustomed to getting lots of your daily calories from before starting this way of eating. This includes items like fruit, processed foods or drinks high in sugar, those made with any grains or white/wheat flour, conventional dairy products, desserts, and many other high-carb foods (especially those that are sources of “empty calories”).
×