In case it wasn’t clear from the title, keto diet is unequivocal, A-grade bullshit. In this article, I’ll give you 4 reasons why you shouldn’t swear off carbohydrates by jumping on ‘all-mighty’ keto diet

Note that I didn’t say ‘I think it’s a dumbfuck diet.’ That’s because this isn’t an opinion. It’s a fact supported by the evidence1 2 3.

Keto diet is up there with a bunch of the other bullshit running wild in the industry like detox or apple cider vinegar.

Keto sounds… cool, I know. You are “hacking” your body to make ketones while drinking bulletproof coffee with butter in it. Which you are not.

Burning dietary fat is not the same as burning stored fat:

this is the picture showing that Burning dietary fat is not the same as burning stored fatwhile following keto diet

With that aside, you can see I don’t share the same disdain for keto like many people. Let me explain why.

When it comes to a diet, you are looking for something that is:

  • Enjoyable
  • Maintainable
  • Sustainable
  • Possible to eat that way a year from now

Let’s tackle them one by one to deconstruct keto diet.

Is Keto Diet Enjoyable?

This is the picture showing what are two kinds of people in this world

There is a pretty good chance you might have found keto diet enjoyable. But (yep, there’s that ugly ‘but’ lurking around the corner) chances are you haven’t been doing it for long enough because…

There two kinds of people in this world (as Jay Alderton once said):

  • People who like carbs and…
  • Liars

Which are you? Are you a dude/gal who likes carbs or you are a liar? Truth is, aggressively restricting or omitting carbs from your life is horrendous.

As I said in my book, what are you going to do when you go out with your family or friends? Are you going to say no to a pie? Beer? Wine? Anything that contains sugar? Of course, you are not. You are going to eat them!

So why the hell should you bother with dietary principles that are impossible to follow unless you wave goodbye to your social life?

Is Keto Diet Maintainable?

Maintaining keto is impossible for most people. Aaaand if you’re like most poor souls out there following keto who introduce carbs back to their diets, then sorry… you’re back to where you started.

If you can stick to keto for the rest of your life, kudos to you. But let me ask you this:

You swear off ‘toxic’ carbs for five days and end up binge eating by trying to figure out how many Pop-Tarts can you fit in your mouth at once on Saturday night.

Does that sound maintainable? In my book, absolutely friggin’ not.

The fundamental truth of any successful diet is to create an energy deficit which you could maintain for a long period of time. If you fall off the wagon on Saturday, you WILL wipe out five days of caloric deficits you have created in one day of runaway gluttony.

Sayonara calorie deficit…

So, is keto maintainable? Hell, no.

Is Keto Diet Sustainable?

this picture shows the importance of dietary sustainability

Here is what I’ve written in my book:

Sustainability is exactly why I am not a fan of the keto diet as a weight loss tool.

Yes, it forces you to eat fewer junk foods, more whole foods, and often fewer calories, but the amount of restriction and resistance it creates makes it nearly impossible to follow long-term.

Especially for regular people with regular lives. 

If you have been struggling to stay consistent with keto, I want you to pay close attention to what I’m about to say…

Your diet should help you eat fewer calories, fewer junk foods, and more whole foods. But in a way that fits around your life as much as possible.

The reality is, this cute girl/dude you kind of know through someone on Facebook who says is on keto isn’t actually on keto! Take A to Z study4 by Gardner et al as an example.

this picture shows the importance of dietary sustainability

Adherence to the Atkins diet (the more enjoyable version of keto) degenerated throughout the trial. Subjects started with 17.7% (compared to 5% that’s allowed on keto) calories coming from carbohydrates.

this picture shows the importance of dietary sustainability

By the end of the trial, the number went to 34.5%.

this picture shows the importance of dietary sustainability

So, people who say they are on keto, ARE NOT. Rather, they are on modified high fat, high protein, and medium carb diet.

So yeah, keto is far from being sustainable. With that said, let’s cover the most important factor of all…

Can You See Yourself Following Keto A Year From Now?

This is the picture showing why keto diet fails at meeting people's preferences

Ask yourself this: what’s your favorite food in the world?

Don’t know about you but mine is a coconut bun that I bought right on the street from a lady on Siargao island in the Philippines. The most delicious bun I’ve ever had!

I’m pretty sure your favorite food is carb-based too. And if you stop eating food that you enjoy for the rest of your life, would it make your diet more sustainable, enjoyable and maintainable?

Of course NOT! You would be a miserable human being to hang around.

The premise of a successful diet is that you should see it as a way of eating a year from now because if you can’t sustain the method you used to lose weight, then the question is not ‘if’ but ‘how quickly’ you will regain the weight back.

Keto might help you lose weight short-term but it’s rubbish long-term.

And here is the last nail to a keto diet coffin:

Your body gets in ketosis after 10-12 days when you take carbs out of the equation. You have three ways to test ketone levels in your blood at that point. The only somewhat accurate and cheap is… urine strips. In plain English, peeing on a stick (wait, wut?).

This is the picture showing why keto diet is unsustainable

Just think about it – to find ketone levels in your blood you need to pee on a stick… Pee on a STICK! Are you going to piss on a stick every two weeks for the rest of your life just to see if keto works? I dunno, I hope you aren’t.

So, is keto enjoyable? No.
Maintainable? Hell no.
Sustainable? Nein.
Possible to follow a year from now? Not on the planet Earth.

This is why I don’t recommend keto diet. You aren’t eating your favorite foods, you are anti-social and you have to pee on a stick. Does short-term weight loss is so important to you to do all that?

Shameless Plug – Get My Book!

If keto requires that much effort and sacrifice, why don’t you just track your macros? Download a calorie tracking app and track every morsel of food that you put in your mouth. It takes a lot less time to log your food than it is pissing on a stick.

Fat loss doesn’t have to be so complicated. As long as you know the fundamentals of fat loss, you can eat carbs and still lose weight.

Eat carbs, enjoy your food, track your macros and if you need professional assistance, that’s why I’m here for.

This Post Has 15 Comments

  1. John

    Thank you, THANK YOU! for cutting to the crap about Keto (and other fad diets) especially to the real-world, sustainability application of it. If you follow it to the letter? Sure, I think you’ll lose weight – just like most other weight loss regimens. Can you do it for extended periods? Likely not. Plain and simple. While I don’t feel I need your book as I’ve figured out what works for me (through painstaking trial and error plus tons of record keeping.). I’m betting others could benefit. Kudos!

  2. Egis R.

    No wonder why keto has been voted as one of the worst diets of 2020🤮

  3. Greg

    hmmm. Been doing Keto for 3 years… not for the weight loss but for the health of it. Blood tests have improved dramatically and blood pressure is normail for the first time in my entire life. Weight loss was a side effect and yes it is possible to sustain and enjoy the diet.

  4. Egis R.

    I am not dissing your achievements, not in the slightest. However, I’m not interested in individual ocassions. It’s the majority of population I’m interested in. And the majority of people will hate keto.

    It’s way too restrictive for most people. There was a study done where, as far as I remember, they found that only about 20% of dieters stick to low-carb diets.

    Also, I remember being in Alan Aragon’s conference. The dude is one of the best evidence-based nutrition researchers in the world.

    He asked, “who of you been on a keto diet?” – heaps of hands. Then he is like, “who of you are still on it?” – most hands dropped. I never said keto doesn’t work because it does work. But it’s a very small group of people who can find it sustainable and enjoyable long-term.

    And even if you look at the studies, the only benefit keto has is for treating epilepsy.

    Other than that, 90–95% of benefits and improvements in health markers come from losing weight rather than diet itself.

  5. Egis R.

    I always talk about the general population rather than outliers. And of course your blood tests improved. That’s what happens when you lose weight. But don’t be mistaken – according to studies, 90-95% of the improvements in blood markers come from losing weight rather a specific diet. Any diet would have resulted in the same outcomes.

  6. Egis R.

    1. 95% of health improvements are because of weight loss itself.

    2. I don’t care the “I lost weight with keto therefore it’s sustainable” crap. I’m talking about the general population, not outliers.

  7. Raoul

    “Are you going to say no to a pie? Bear? Wine? NONE OF THAT MATERS?” Did you get past the 1st grade? I didn’t think so.

  8. NellK

    Thank you for this article.
    As someone with anorexia and bulimia in her past I’ve noticed quite a few of the biggest keto “influencers” have transferred their ED’s into the “keto lifestyle”.
    The ones forcing it on their kids are the absolute worst. Seeing children obsessed with eating the right food so they don’t get in trouble by keto mom is nothing but a breeding ground for the hell of ED’s & disordered eating/body image.
    There is even one mom who makes money shilling her adopted children this way. And when you know where these children came from & what they faced in their homeland, it is even more F’d up.
    I had my doubts about it but when my Doctor said this would definitely help with my gynecological issues, stupid me believed them. And guess what reared it’s ugly head after 16 years in recovery?
    When my nutritionist basically yelled at me for eating a small bowl of Ikura Don after I worked a 12hr shift on my feet, I told her to shove it. Imagine telling someone that eating a Subway salad or Jimmy John’s “unwhich” is better than homemade Ikura Don from my mother-in-law.

  9. Egis R.

    This is the world we live in these days – doctors with no background in nutritional science and “gurus” who’ve done their “research” giving nutrition advice…

  10. Chris Bunyea

    Don’t ignore science. Weight loss is about burning off more calories than the calories you consume. Does anyone believe Michael Phelps could win medals without consuming carbs? If so, you don’t understand how the human body works. The average person should eat vegetables and fruit, a little bit of protein and enough carbs to give them the energy they need depending on their output if exersion. Have you noticed that every new diet/nutrition fad is being proposed by someone trying to make money?

  11. Egis R.

    True, my man.

  12. Roger

    Keto is really crap I have been on it and it make you sick. You gain nothing I believe people shoul get off keto like the masks people wore during the pandemic it’s nothing more then garbage

  13. Egis R.

    For most people, yes.

  14. Andrew

    The crazy part, the low carb cult thinks they’re being lied to by “mainstream advice”. I was there a long time ago, circa 2012 . So glad I got out. Pretty sure I developed an eating disorder and maybe even some mania although I was never diagnosed with anything.

    “Everyone is different” is being abused to hell. People just think they can say these three words to justify living out whatever insane dietary narrative they desire. Even the people who should be telling the truth fall back on “everyone is different” probably because they don’t want to lose their audience. The absolute truth is that the vast majority of people following a low carb diet would be much better off trying a “boring”, balanced, high fiber, high protein, high micronutrient diet.

  15. Egis R.

    Couldn’t agree more, Andrew.

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