Can You Cheat On Your Ketogenic Diet by Taking Keto Supplements?
A ketogenic diet is a strict low-carb eating plan that forces the body to burn fats for energy instead of carbohydrates. When carbs are restricted, the body moves into a state of ketosis, a metabolic state that produces ketones by breaking down fats in the liver, which are then used for diet.
Is it Possible to Cheat On the Ketogenic Diet?
In a regular moderate to high-carb diet, carbs are converted to glucose in the bloodstream. Glucose is the easiest molecule for the body to convert into energy so it will be used before any other energy source. When the glucose is used for energy, the fats consumed are not needed by the body and are stored, resulting in excess weight.
The effectiveness of the diet depends on your carb intake. Normally an intake of between 20-30g of net carbs per day is recommended and reducing this intake to less than 15g will give faster results.
As the carb intake of a “normal” diet can range between 150-400g of carbs per day, reducing them to the level required to get into the state can be quite challenging. Because of this, some people may be tempted to have a cheat day on keto. The good thing is that, there are many ways that you can do cheats days or meals without breaking your ketosis state which a lot of people who have been on the diet for years can attest to.
So, yes, there are are many ways to do it which we will get into in just a little bit.
Keto Supplements That Help You Stay in Ketosis
There are various supplements available designed to benefit those on trying the keto diet. Some supplements also aim to induce a state of ketosis in the body, even if the blood glucose level is too high to be achieved naturally. These products or supplements can also help you stay in ketosis even if you decide to take a cheat day on keto:
- MCT (Medium Chain Triglyceride) oil – these medium chain fats can enter the bloodstream quicker than other fats, enabling the body to enter the state of losing weight more quickly and efficiently. To read about of favorite MCT oil brand click here.
- Insulin – used by some bodybuilders to achieve the body state more quickly by lowering blood sugar levels.
- Exogenous Components – claim to induce an immediate state of the diet by increasing levels of beta-hydroxybutyric acid (BHB) in the bloodstream. This has a similar effect as ketones in the body and its modern sciences way of cheating the system. To read our reviews on the top exogenous ketones: click here.
- Sodium and potassium–salts that can help to regulate insulin levels in the body, reducing common side effects of the diet such as headaches and dizziness.
- Spirulina– an algae that is naturally very high in protein. Research shows it can also help to lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels.
- Fish oil – contain omega-3 fatty acids, which can help to lower levels of triglycerides. High levels of triglycerides are common when following a high fat diet and can increase the risk of heart disease. Studies have shown that taking 3-4g of fish oil each day reduced triglyceride levels by an average of 25%.
Does it Work Even If You Have a Cheat Day?
If you find it difficult to follow a strict low-carb diet, the idea of being able to put your body into a state of instant ketosis is a very appealing one. Exogenous components are available in several different branded products, like Perfect Keto, Pruvit, and CoreBasics. While they all have slightly different ingredients, the way they work is by increasing BHB levels in the body is the same. But they do have somewhat of a different taste, especially Perfect Keto. It’s the only one that actually tastes good out of all the products that we’ve ever tried.
Increased BHB levels do put the body into a state of ketosis but it’s not yet been proven that this increased fat burning is the way that naturally generated components do. Early clinical trials have shown that they may help with appetite suppression, which may be the reason that certain users have found it easier to lose weight while taking these supplements.
And to answer the question, yes. You can have some cheat days once in a while given that you still watch your carb intake. Also, you need to make sure that you take the supplements to guarantee that you do not get out of the state just yet.
How to Properly Have “Keto Cheat Days”
I know that some of you are very hungry right now and probably craving something naughty because that’s how the ketogenic diet works sometimes, you can be deprived of the best foods in the world and it can take a toll on you mentally. That is why a lot of people that go on this diet are always on the hunt for some cheat days on keto which is completely normal I would say.
So, here it is, our guide on how to have a proper “keto cheat day” that won’t mess with your ketogenic diet (too much):
1. Do a Cyclical Ketogenic Diet
First, what does it mean? CKD is a diet cycle where you typically follow the standard ketogenic diet to a tee for five days a week (mostly weekdays) then two keto diet cheat days which mostly consists of higher carb intakes (mostly weekends).
Note that this will sometimes get you out of the diet but it can surely make the whole process a lot more bearable. But even if it does get you out of the state, you will still get roughly most of the benefits of it if you follow the cycle properly.
2. Do Cheats Days with Keto-Friendly Foods & Snacks
If you have been on the diet for a while, I’m sure that your mouth is already watering from me mentioning the word “snacks”. Well, you’re in luck because if you’re already planning to go on a ketosis cheat day, then we have exactly what you need to satisfy that craving and still maintain the rules of your strict diet.
Today, with all the different strict low carb diets that are popping up left and right, it is no wonder that people who are on them are always searching for foods and snacks that can satisfy the feeling of being deprived of those wonderful tasting meals. The more that these health routines become more popular, so will these diet-friendly snacks (more options here). So, if you are going to have a cheat day on keto diet then you might as well do it with something that won’t do damage to your current routine.
Right now, Keto Kookie is the most popular brand of low carb snacks that you can easily buy online. And, if you want to read our review about it, you can click this link here.
So, Should You Still Do It?
There has not yet been enough research into supplements to confirm if it is possible to use them to maintain a sustained state of ketosis without eating a low carb diet; however if you do decide to have cheat meals or days while taking it, you should be completely fine as long as you follow our tips on how to stay in it. To find out more about supplements and the various types you can take to help you get into a state of losing more weight, I suggest you check out our reviews page here, to get yourself familiar with the number 1 products in the market.
- Nutritional supplements can aid a healthy diet by reducing negative side effects and potential health issues, but do not aid the body in achieving a body state that will help you lose weight.
- MCT oil can help to achieve that state and may enable a slightly higher intake of carbs when used. However, carb intake must remain relatively low – up to around 150g per day.
- Insulin can help to get the body into the state more quickly (half a day instead of 2-3 days by diet alone). However artificially messing with blood sugar levels can be very dangerous.
- Exogenous supplements are the most promising option to induce ketosis and many users report that they’ve been able to lose weight without a reduction in carbs.
- However, as exogenous ketones are a relatively new supplement, there is a lack of scientific testing and results are currently based on individual user experience only. Some research even claims that artificially consuming the product in this way can actually inhibit the fat burning process and cause health problems.
If you’re keen to experiment with exogenous substances, it makes sense to do your own research and monitor your health carefully while using them. While it may be possible to “cheat” by eating a big meal and still lose weight, this is a habit that will be very hard to incorporate into the diet. You can only do it occasionally as having too many “cheat days” will get you out of ketosis regardless of what kind of supplements you’re taking. As always, moderation is in order.