lchf vs keto

The ultimate comparison: LCHF vs KETO

January 31. 2022

We all know the most challenging part of every weight loss journey is the beginning, but nobody mentions the part before even starting the journey – choosing the right weight loss plan or program. Trends on how to eat come and go, making it even more confusing to make the right choice. So many different options: low-carb, high-carb, plant-based, Mediterranean, intermittent fasting. So how do you choose? 

Many people believe if a particular diet works for them, it will soothe everyone else. This is partly fueled by the media leading us to believe one way of eating is better than others. It is essential to find a program and a meal plan that suits you and your lifestyle and won’t require too much change. It shouldn’t request you compromise your goals or jeopardize your health. You should always do your research, but also turn to a weight loss clinic and let professionals help you.

Choosing the right diet

Low carb diets are rising in popularity with no signs of dropping off, which is not surprising considering the success in decreasing one’s weight and keeping it down. The concept of all these diets is the same – to reduce carb intake. There is a wide range of possibilities when it comes to low-carb diets, and some of them are:

  • The Atkins diet
  • Eco-Atkins diet
  • A low-carb paleo diet
  • LCHF diet
  • The carnivore diet
  • The low-carb Mediterranean diet
  • Whole30 diet
  • The ketogenic diet

The two most popular low-carb diets listed are LCHF and KETO. There has been so much debate on LCHF vs KETO diets and the differences between the two.

Choosing between the two is not easy, and you can easily get overwhelmed with biased or conflicting information. You should consider several factors before making a choice. The first step is to understand the ideas and science behind these diets.

LCHF diet

LCHF stands for low carbs high fat. The name says it all. This diet requires eating a small amount of carbohydrate-based food,  cutting out foods like bread, pasta, sugar, and sugary beverages. These are also high-calorie foods, making this diet so popular for losing weight. What makes it more attractive is that it can be personalized to meet everyone’s needs. This diet leads to increasing the intake of vegetables, protein, and healthy fats. The LHCF diet is considered more of a lifestyle than just a diet to follow to lose weight.

Because it’s more of a life change, it doesn’t have clear standards for macronutrient percentage, as keto does. This diet is linked to weight loss and other health benefits, such as improving blood sugar control and lowering cardiovascular risk factors. It’s also important to know that this diet has less adaptation phase and that it is less restrictive and easier to follow than keto.

What happens in your body when you follow this diet plan is that the drop of carbohydrates causes the body to start gluconeogenesis, a process in which glucose is produced endogenously. 

As we already mentioned, this diet suggests eating a small number of carbs (daily intake should be limited to approximately 50g), meaning you should skip starch, cereal, and other grain-based food. You can consume vegetables, dairy products, olive oil, fish, and meats. You should also avoid dried fruit and any processed foods as they can contain a lot of sugar. Margarine, sunflower oil, and other substances that contain omega-6 fatty acids shouldn’t be included in your meals. 

LCHF diet can be hard to maintain, and if you’re not careful, it can cause you to lose vitamins and minerals. That can lead to feeling tired and having low energy levels. But once you figure out how everything works, you can enjoy all its benefits. If you have trouble mixing everything you’re allowed to eat into daily meals, try following fasting-mimicking diet recipes to give you an idea of what your meals should look like.

KETO diet

Two sources are fueling the human body – glucose and fatty acids. But fat is an energy that can be excessively stored in the body, which leads to gaining weight. If only there’s a way our bodies can use stored fat rather than glucose. That can help us lose weight. Luckily there is! And that is the secret of this type of diet.

The ketogenic or keto diet is also a low-carb and high-fat diet, but you have to keep track of your calories. The goal of this diet is to reach nutritional ketosis, a state in which your body produces ketones from fat stored in your body and uses them to produce energy. Under regular diet circumstances, your liver catabolizes carbs down into monomers of glucose, but under the keto diet, the liver catabolizes fats to form ketone bodies instead.

Following this diet means drastically reducing carbohydrate and protein intake. Same foods as in the LCHF diet should be avoided, and the carbohydrates are limited from 20 to 50 g per day. This diet has a significant impact on your health on the side of great impact on your weight. Although this diet has its pros, such as reducing appetite, improving cholesterol, triglyceride levels, and insulin sensitivity it can have its cons if you’re not eating by the rules. Low fiber intake can lead to constipation, headaches, fatigue, and lack of motivation are something that gets complained about most often.

There are a few different variations of this diet, such as targeted keto diets, high-protein keto, carb cycling keto, keto flex diet.

How does carb restriction work well on your weight loss:

  • By decreasing carbs, you increase the consumption of high-fats, proteins, and fiber-rich foods. These foods boost satiety which causes you to eat fewer calories than before
  • By restricting carbs, you’re eliminating all the foods dense in calories, and we all know that weight gain comes after regularly consuming too many calories. 

Difference between KETO and LCHF

Definition of LCHF vs KETO

LCHF is when a person eats fewer carbs, but more fats and protein, and keto is when a person eats fewer carbs and proteins but more fats

LCHF intake is typically 50-150, and ketogenic is restricted to less than 50g.

Protein intake in LCHF can be high, whereas, in a ketogenic diet, that intake should be at around 20% of total calorie intake. 

Fat intake is higher in ketogenic than in the LCHF diet, replacing carbs and proteins.

Metabolic changes in LCHF vs KETO

LCHF diet stimulates gluconeogenesis, and keto triggers gluconeogenesis at first, but then a state of ketogenesis is triggered.

Diet of LCHF vs KETO

LCHF diet requires you to reduce the number of carbs you consume, while keto requires you greatly decrease that number

Risks in LCHF vs KETO

Dehydration, feeling fatigued, and loss of nutrients are risks of the LCHF diet. On the other hand, KETO can be risky for someone already taking medication as it can cause hypoglycemia. It can also trigger dehydration and a feeling that many people compare to flu.

Final thoughts

When choosing a diet, it’s important to acknowledge that we’re all different, and don’t respond to foods in the same way. Restrictive diets can cause harm to our bodies, so get to know all the dangers of fad diets, whether followed in the short or the long run.

LCHF and KETO diets both limit carbs but in different amounts. It is tempting to think that keto diets will make you lose more weight since they restrict carbs more than LCHF diets. But there is no proof of that. In fact, these two diets help you lose a similar amount of weight after the same time. You should make your choice by considering how persistent you can be with your diet and what your goals are. However, you must keep in mind that losing weight isn’t the only thing we should focus on when making diet decisions.

Both of these diets are suitable for fat burning, but some programs can boost fat burning even more. A program that has a lot of satisfied clients and is the most popular is the Lipo C injection program. For further information, feel free to call us any time!

Nurse Walton


Nurse Walton

Born and raised in Chicago, IL, Chanay received her Practical Nurse licensure and went to work in clinical specialties such as Home Health, Assisted Living, Long-Term Care and Dialysis Centers. Through this work, she realized the importance of diet, nutrition and weight loss among her patients. This led her to open A Better Weigh, Inc. Medical Weight Loss Center in 2009.

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