Ketogenicinfo » Dirty-Lazy-Keto » The Dirty Keto Diet: Can You Lose Weight?

The Dirty Keto Diet: Can You Lose Weight?

What is Lazy Keto?

Lazy keto is also sometimes called dirty keto. It’s formulating your keto diet with poor quality fatty foods that increase inflammation and free radical damage. Dirty keto also includes eating processed, packaged foods and cured meats.

There is good fat and bad fat and the dirty keto diet doesn’t differentiate the healthy keto fats from the unhealthy ones.

Additionally, instead of eliminating sugary foods, those that eat lazy keto just replace the real sugar with artificial sweeteners and continue eating the sweet foods.

What’s the difference between dirty Keto and clean Keto?

Clean keto is training your body to become fat-adapted which reduces cravings and lets you avoid artificial sweeteners altogether.

Also, clean keto is eating high-quality fats such as fish, olives, avocados, keto-friendly nuts, pasture-raised butter, cheese, and free-range eggs. This resource breaks down the keto diet food list into clean and dirty categories.

When I explain the keto diet to people I always tell them dirty keto is still better than no keto.

I hear the argument that clean keto is too expensive. I get it, some of those organic, grass-fed, pasture-raised food items are pricey.

Healthy cold-pressed avocado and olive oil are a lot more expensive than cheap, heat-processed vegetable oils like corn and canola.

The best advice is to just do the best you can and buy the healthiest foods you can afford. A hotdog is still a lot better for you than a honey bun.

Here is a list of the cleanest keto superfoods you can eat. You might be surprised that some of these superfoods aren’t even that expensive.

You can’t outrun a bad diet

Consuming excessive artificial sweeteners is another form of dirty keto.

The main problem with over-reliance on artificial sweeteners, especially in the beginning phase of keto, is that it slows down breaking the sugar addiction. Sugar is extremely harmful to your metabolism and the sooner you break free from its bonds the better.

While sugar substitutes do not raise blood sugar like real sugar, they could potentially cause a “fat-storing” insulin response and in some cases can damage the intestinal flora and contribute to keto constipation.

A lot of people that have difficulties and fail on the keto diet fail because they follow a dirty keto diet. They don’t ingest enough healthy fats, prebiotic fiber, probiotics, vitamins, and minerals. Here is an informative article on the 10 downsides to keto and how to avoid them.

Understanding the difference between good fats and bad fats are paramount to avoiding dirty keto.

Those of us on the Ketogenic Diet are increasing our intake of dietary fat to use as energy. So we have to know the difference between good fats and bad fats and try to eat as much of the healthy fats as possible.

Bad fats increase inflammation and oxidation, so to avoid dirty keto stay away from the bad fats like vegetable oils and trans-fats. Here is a complete explanation of the best keto fat sources.

Keeping our bodies in a low insulin state is one of the secrets to fat loss, lower inflammation, and improvements in insulin sensitivity. Eating plenty of fat, especially in the beginning can help you get Fat or Keto-Adapted.

Introducing Lazy Keto:

Eating just any fats for the sake of getting enough fat into your diet is part of what’s called Lazy or Dirty Keto. Contrary to popular belief, butter is not dirty keto, especially pasture-raised, organic cultured butter.

Unhealthy fats are linked to a whole host of negative health issues including inflammation, arthritis, cancer, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and autoimmune diseases like asthma.

Dirty Keto Examples

Don’t heat up your cooking oil past the smoke point because that will cause the oil to go rancid and oxidize.

These are the 5 best oils for cooking:

Smoke points in degrees (F)

  • Avocado 520
  • Ghee 482
  • Mustard 480
  • Palm 450
  • Beef Tallow 400

Consuming omega 3 fatty acids is an example of clean keto

A further study on Omega 3 fatty acids shows that omega 3 fatty acids slow the formation of proinflammatory markers and scavenge free radicals. The bottom line is that omega 3 fatty acids reduce inflammation and oxidation of low-density lipoprotein particles.

“To sum it up:  When looking at total cholesterol, if you have high HDL and are eating the right ratio of healthy fats, you are far less likely to have a negative cardiovascular event.”

Robert Bryant
Take krill oil to avoid lazy keto
Krill oil is high in omega 3 fats

Omega-3 fatty acids lower triglycerides, blood pressure, blood clotting, decrease stroke and heart failure risk and improve insulin sensitivity.

*Try to get your fish in the “wild-caught state.” For example, my favorite fish is salmon. A 4-ounce serving of salmon provides 2,400 mg omega-3s. The “farm-raised” fish are grown in crowded pens where they are treated with antibiotics and eat a less healthy grain-based diet.

Eat fish instead of processed lunch meat to avoid lazy keto

Plant sources of omega 3 fatty acids are excellent because they can also give you prebiotic fiber that strengthens your intestinal flora and can prevent constipation on the Ketogenic Diet. 

However, the problem with plant sources is they don’t actually contain omega 3 fatty acids. They contain ALA (alpha-linolenic acid).

Don’t forget about plant sources:

Plant sources of omega 3 fatty acids are excellent because they can also give you prebiotic fiber that strengthens your intestinal flora and can prevent constipation on the Ketogenic Diet. 

However, the problem with plant sources is they don’t actually contain omega 3 fatty acids. They contain ALA (alpha-linolenic acid).

ALA has to be converted to omega 3s (EPA and DHA) by enzymes. So only about 9-14% of the ALA is actually converted to omega 3 fatty acids. Plus plant sources can increase blood levels of ALA and EPA but not necessarily DHA.

So make sure you are supplementing your plant sources with animal sources.

Here are the best plant sources of ALA:

  • Flaxseed meal
  • Chia seeds
  • Algae oil
  • Hemp hearts
  • Brussel sprouts
  • Walnuts
  • Perilla oil

Keep your fat intake balanced. Try to increase your intake of omega 3 and omega 9 fats and lower your intake of omega 6 fats and you will have long term, healthy success on the Ketogenic Diet.

Astaxanthin stops oxidation

Stay away from excessive artificial sweeteners to avoid dirty keto

You can read all about sugar and artificial sweeteners here in this article: The Case Against Sugar.

But bottom line is eating too many keto desserts with artificial sweeteners is an example of lazy or dirty keto.

Artificial sweeteners do cause an insulin spike. This study published on Medical News Today shows that insulin rises 20% after consuming sucralose.

The receptors on the tongue are reacted by artificial Sweeteners. Even though they don’t contain calories, they “think” they are consuming something sweet. The receptors on the tongue, gastrointestinal tract, and pancreas all work together.

Beware of the keto chaffles, they would be considered Lazy Keto.

Chaffles are utterly delicious but provide very little nutrition. If made with almond flour they can be a little high in carbs and the artificial sweetener in the syrup might give some people problems. However, I am not a chaffle nazi and I do eat them occasionally. Here is a helpful keto chaffle recipe and explanation.

So technically, consuming artificial sweeteners during a fast will not break your fast because they do not contain calories. However, they should definitely be avoided because they will stop autophagy.

Autophagy is one the major benefits of intermittent fasting. It is well established that autophagy is suppressed by insulin.

To much dirty keto can also contribute to a keto weight loss plateau.

Lazy Keto does work. You can lose weight and get into ketosis using the “lazy” version of the Ketogenic Diet, however, it can make keto more difficult and add to the potential problems associated with keto. Here are the top 10 downsides of the keto diet.

While not ideal, dirty keto is still better than no Keto, and you can mitigate some of the oxidative damage by taking these beneficial antioxidant supplements.

“Try to limit bad fats and artificial sweeteners to improve your long term health on the ketogenic diet.”

Blaze Pizza is considered dirty keto, but their keto crust pizza is only about 15 carbohydrates for three slices.

Robert Bryant
Robert Bryant

I eat dirty keto occasionally. Some of those keto-friendly desserts with artificial sweeteners are pretty darn good.

However, I watch my weight closely and when I see myself gaining weight, lazy keto is usually the culprit. When I clean up my keto diet I start losing weight again.

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