The definition of Lazy keto varies significantly from person to person and can be confusing for those who are new to the ketogenic lifestyle. With the recent popularity of the ketogenic diet along with a ton of misinformation available from social media and websites cashing in on the trend alike, many think lazy keto is what eating ketogenic is all about.
The Lazy keto approach is typically not tightly tracking calories or sticking to protein and fat macros but instead keeping your carb intake under 20 grams or less per day.
Why Are The Keto Police Condemning Lazy Keto?
For many, going lazy keto might even include eating whatever they want as long as it fits within their carb count including sugars, bad fats, grain-based fillers and chemical additives in packaged foods.
Now I’m certainly not the Keto police, but I’m sure you would agree that eating bad food doesn’t match up to the ketogenic way of eating for losing weight or dealing with a disease. Continue reading so I can explain why lazy keto or IIFYM may not be the best approach to drop the extra pounds that you’re hanging onto.
Most people new to keto are doing some form of lazy keto or even low-carb disguised as keto, and I understand. Keto is a vast topic and can get pretty scientific when you start to educate yourself. It can be intimidating!
If lazy keto is what you need to change your life and it will allow you to take control of your health then sit back in the recliner and get comfortable. It is a significant lifestyle change, and you may need to ease into a more comprehensive keto diet to see the long-term health benefits or fit into that new dress by your birthday.
Lazy Keto Works But For How Long?
It makes sense when you go from eating sugar filled, starchy carbs and fast food to cutting them out of your diet, focusing on your health and eating a whole food diet with fewer carbs you are going to see a change in your body for the better.
If you drink soda and eat french fries all day and suddenly stop you are going to drop some weight and probably feel much better no doubt.
I’ve seen lots of people drop massive amounts of weight doing lazy keto and I have seen hundreds quit because their body is different and they don’t see the immediate results they had hoped for from a more laid-back approach.
There are some things to consider if you are thinking about the lazy keto approach or if you’ve been doing lazy keto and have hit a weight loss plateau.
Tracking Keto Macros Sucks!
I agree! Tracking everything you eat all day long can be annoying and time-consuming for most of us. After being on keto for some time, I don’t obsess or log everything I eat on a daily basis either. Although, I do consider myself pretty strict in my approach to what I eat, the macros and calories I consume each day. Just ask my wife who was laughing at me the other day when I was picking out three tiny kernels of corn from my salad when we went out for lunch.
When I first started, I tracked religiously to figure out which foods both enabled or kicked me out of ketosis, increased blood sugar, caused insulin spikes and ultimately what helped me feel great!
I suggest those new to keto start by tracking and getting to know not only the carb counts but also the fat, protein and calories you’re consuming each day and how your body reacts to the changes. I think you will be surprised how quickly the totals of the food you eat each day adds up. Once you have a handle on it, then you can relax and not track as often or at all.
The Lazy Keto Approach Often Ignores Other Essential Macros
If you are not balancing your calories, fat and protein consumption along with your carb intake, you are probably missing out on many of the extended health benefits from keto and your ultimate success as time goes on.
Fat Is Crucial To Your Success
Healthy fat is the most significant energy source on the ketogenic diet. When you get the daily fat consumption macro right for your body and goals, it not only helps tremendously to satiate your hunger but it will help curb cravings for traditional carbs. Taming the desires to snack on high carb food will help you stay on track for longer and meet your goals.
I hear all the time from people doing lazy keto “I’m starving in between meals.” as compared to someone who has their fat macro dialed and has become fat adapted saying “I’m not even hungry.”
Protein Is Key To Ketosis and Your Physique
Getting the proper protein is critical for optimal health and also continuing to burn ketones for energy. When ketones aren’t present, the body can break down amino acids from the protein in your muscles via Gluconeogenesis (GNG) by turning protein into glycogen that can be used as glucose for fuel. The downside to Gluconeogenesis (GNG) is that it keeps your body from moving into ketosis.
Even worse if you dont eat enough protein your body starts breaking down your lean muscle mass for fuel and it can result in damage to your body, your health, and overall performance.
So making sure you are getting the right amount of healthy fat and not over or under consuming protein is vital to your success. Remember Lazy Keto ignores these essential macros almost entirely.
IIFYM Is A Disaster Waiting To Happen
For some “If It Fits Your Macros” (IIFYM) is a form of lazy keto where you eat whatever you want regardless of whats in it as long as you’re under 20-25 grams of carbs each day.
WARNING!!!! IIFYM is a pet peeve of mine so forgive the rant that’s about to ensue.
The web and social media groups are filled with people sharing low-carb desserts, sugar-free candy and prepackaged foods filled with crap calling it keto. In my opinion, encouraging one another to indulge in low-carb replacements for the foods like brownies and ice cream that frankly got people unhealthy and overweight in the first place is a misstep.
Do you think that’s a recipe for long-term success? Of course not. Keto is all about healthy whole food, removing processed foods, sugar and consuming food that is good for us.
If you fill your daily carb intake with desert replacements and packaged foods, you may be hitting your carb goals, but you’re setting yourself up for a fall later by not changing your unhealthy relationship with food from your high carb living past.
Of course, everything in moderation. An occasional keto dessert or a pint of Halo-Top is fine, but don’t overdo it. Remember this is a total lifestyle change, not just a fad diet. You are working on your mental relationship with food as much as the tastes and dependencies you have developed over a lifetime.
Should You Go Lazy Keto or Strict Keto?
If you are just getting started, I suggest trying a more informed approach by tracking what you are eating and seeing how you react to the new changes in your diet. You will learn a great deal about your body and the foods you eat.
On the other hand, if you’ve been doing lazy keto for a while and are hitting a stall in your weight loss or want to try and maximize your results why not give a more focused approach a try?
Try it for a few weeks and see what may be causing you to stall. Are you overdoing the fat, overeating or under-eating protein or consuming too many calories? You will know for sure with just a little more effort, and you can adjust as needed. I think you will be surprised by how much impact even small changes can have on your keto success.