Lazy, Strict and Dirty Keto – Whats the Difference?

A collection of ingredients for lazy,strict and dirty keto

Lazy, Strict and Dirty Keto – Whats the Difference?

People seem to have this habit of trying to break things down into cliques. When I first started Keto I was unaware of the different groups Keto people fell under. I certainly couldn’t understand why some people would say something was ‘Keto’ and others would disagree.  It was confusing and overwhelming and honestly just a little bit off-putting. People can be very strongly opinionated when it comes to their food. The debate over lazy, strict and dirty keto rages on in the keto community and I am here to help shed some light on it for those of you just starting out.

Before I start, however, I want to make it clear that I fully support any diet choices you make which makes you feel better about yourself. Any and all positive changes in our lives should be encouraged regardless of the decisions of others.

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Lazy, Strict and Dirty Keto – Whats the Difference?

I actually hate these ‘keto types’ I believe it would be far less confusing and more welcoming to do away with these intergroup cliques entirely. However, if you are interested in Keto and want to start this way of eating then you are bound to run across them eventually, especially if you become active in keto facebook groups. This post is not meant to steer you in any direction when it comes to Keto and all opinions on the lazy, strict and dirty Keto categories are entirely my own.

Lazy, Strict and Dirty Keto – The Breakdown

strict lazy and dirty keto pin image

 

What is Lazy Keto?

Lazy Keto, in a nutshell, is where you focus on staying under 20g of net carbs a day.

While doing lazy keto it’s unlikely that you will be attempting to follow macros or count calories. You spend your time focusing on doing away with the sugars and junk food in your diet. You up your fat intake because you read that you should and stay away from fruits and high carb vegetables like potatoes. You’re probably not spending every meal calculating things into an app or if you do you only bother with the Net Carbs.

Lazy keto is great for people who get bored with endlessly trying to do the math or are easily overwhelmed and frustrated by the number game that is strict keto.

Does Lazy Keto work?

It worked for me. I have lost 51 pounds on lazy keto. I never bothered counting calories or spending a great deal of time worrying about my macros.  20g of net carbs a day will get you into ketosis and start you on the path to being fat adapted. Your ultimate Keto goal.

For most people, Lazy Keto will work for initial weight loss. It makes sense – cutting out the junk food is bound to have a positive influence on your body.  However, some people do stall out as they get closer to their weight loss goals and for others, their weight problems might be related to a food like dairy or sweeteners which requires a slightly stricter way of eating.

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What is Strict Keto?

Strict Keto is sticking to under 20g of net carbs per day while also watching your calories.

Most people on a strict Keto diet follow macros that are carefully calibrated using apps. The apps tell them how much fat/protein, carbs, and calories they should be eating in order to reach their weight loss goals.

Strict Keto is great for people who typically have a hard time losing weight or perform better when they have a specific goal to reach. Lots of people take great personal pride in hitting that perfect macro day – and they should! If you need that sort of motivation and daily accountability to stay on track then a stricter version of keto might be for you.

Does Strict Keto Work?

Yes! It is, after all, lazy keto on steroids. For many people, strict keto has been the only way they achieve the final weight loss they desire. I never had to do strict keto to meet my goals but this is likely because I was able to include a good bit of exercise in my day. For people who have been stalled for a long time, are not able to exercise or are just not seeing the results they desire then strict keto is sometimes the answer.

lazy dirty strict keto a picture of ingredients

What is Dirty Keto?

Dirty Keto is a term I really dislike. This term has come up recently when it started making the rounds on various Keto facebook groups. This seems to be a new term but, I fear it might become more popular given how people like to label things.  It refers to following a Keto diet but continuing to use processed foods to do so. It can also be used to refer to following an ‘if it fits under 20g a day go for it!’ type of mantra.

I eat dirty keto. Why? Because I like wraps (using low carb tortillas) sometimes I use Carbquick to make biscuits and once in a while, I enjoy some low carb Ice cream. My diet is 1000% better then what I used to eat. I eat a lot more veggies, I use a lot more healthy fats while cooking and I no longer fill my cart with potato chips and cookies. I take issue with anyone calling that ‘dirty’.

But, even aside from that. Dirty keto is often seen as a shameful practice and it shouldn’t be. Clean eating is a wonderful standard for those blessed enough to be able to enjoy it. But not everyone can. Some people don’t have access to a good variety of nonprocessed foods and other’s just straight up can’t afford it.

Dirty Keto is still Keto. You are still doing a great job! You’re still taking steps to better your life.

A collection of ingredients for lazy,strict and dirty keto

My Thoughts on the Lazy, Strict and Dirty Keto Debate

I love Keto, since starting Keto at the tail end of last year my life has changed for the better. I’m doing things now that I never considered before. I’m exercising through Yoga and Running but even better I like myself again. What I don’t love is how fanatical some people can be about Keto. The same can be said for any activity – I’m a middle of the road person, I don’t enjoy the extremists of any group.

It is true that some practices in Keto work better for some than others. For some people dairy is fine, for others is stalls out weight loss. Some people do fine with artificial sweeteners others do not. Because all of our bodies are different we all react differently. Exploring these differences and finding the methods that work best for you is great and highly encouraged! I have no problems with people saying Lazy Keto didn’t give them results so they switched to strict Keto.

I only have a problem when people start demanding that the way they do things is the only right way. The only proper way. This is not true. You are making a positive change for yourself and that should be celebrated no matter how you manage to do it. Do what works for you and be proud of it! Let’s leave the lazy, strict and dirty keto categories behind and just focus on supporting each other.

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31 Comments

  1. I’ve never even heard of Keto but I really respect anyone who can maintain heathy eating habits especially with strict Keto, I’ve never been one to be able to count exactly whats going into my body, I just try and eat better! Thanks for such an informative post!
    Sophie – https://sophiehearts.net x

    1. Author

      it can be difficult to keep up with for sure! Eating better no matter if that means following Keto or just cutting out a bit of the junk food should be celebrated though! Every step in the right direction no matter how small is a positive change! I am glad you found the post informative!

  2. This is a really interesting read, I’ve definitely learnt something xx

  3. This was an interesting read, I honestly had no idea what keto was or anything about it before reading this. I don’t follow any type of diet or restrictive eating as I’ve had disordered eating in the past, I basically eat what I want but ensure I exercise and drink plenty of water xxx

    1. Author

      As long as your healthy that’s all that matter’s in the end and everyone has to find the way that works for them! Congrats on beating the eating disorder I know that can be a crazy hard battle.

  4. I’ve always been I intrigued by Keto diets and you’ve explained it so well! Credit to you for sticking at it and reaching your goals too!x

  5. I don’t know much about keto, but I found it very interesting to see how different people approach it, and what you think of each one. I definitely feel like I’ve learned something from reading this!

    Ps, congrats on maintaining such a healthy lifestyle and for losing so much weight on it – it sounds like keto has been a really positive thing for your life!

    1. Author

      Thank you! It really has. I feel like an entirely new person, a much better person then I was before.

    1. Author

      Thank you! I hope it helps get rid of some confusion for people!

  6. It’s awesome that you’ve lost 51 lbs from lazy keto! Having a healthy diet is so important to losing weight. Oh man, I know I’d have a hard time with strict keto but it makes sense for people who want to achieve a certain goal and need that push. Thanks for explaining the difference between the two!

    Nancy ♥ exquisitely.me

  7. I’ve heard of the Keto diet, but this helped me understand it a little bit more. It would be hard to do.. Definitely not something that is for me. I rather just try to eat mainly vegetables and fruits and lean meat. I don’t pay attention to calories or anything. Maybe I should!

  8. I’ve heard of the Keto diet but I didn’t know much detail about it so this was a great post to help shed some light on it! Unfortunately I love carbs too much to cut them down to less than 20g a day and although I know it works for a lot of people I believe carbs are what fuel your body so cutting them out and trying to do a lot of exercise can be pretty dangerous! Everyone’s body works differently though so I completely agree just find what works for you and then stick to it and you’ll reach your goals!

    Jess // foundationsandfairytales.wordpress.com
    xx

    1. Author

      Humans evolved to use ketones/fat for fuel. A high carb diet was not part of our lifestyle until we started agriculture which in scientific timelines is basically a blink of an eye historically. Carbs require less work for your body to turn into fuel so your body will use carbs before turning fat into ketones for energy. This means that if you eat a high carb diet your body will burn carbs for fuel – however, if you don’t burn said carbs off our other evolved survival trait kicks in and stores the extra ‘just in case’, because you are eating carbs your body also stores any extra fat you eat which is what causes weight gain in many people.

      When you start a keto diet you make your body remember how to use fat for fuel. Although this can slow down your exercise and energy until you transition and become fat adapted burning ketones for fuel is not at all dangerous. There are many ultra-marathoners and professional athletes who thrive on a low carb/keto diet. Because our bodies naturally have a larger store of fat then we can ever store of carbs (carb loading before a workout) many of these marathoners and athletes report they no longer ‘hit the wall’ even.

      However! If you are doing well on a carb diet and meeting your goals and like how you feel and look then absolutely keep doing you! Everyone needs to find their own path =-)

  9. I’ve heard about the Keto diet but didn’t know anything about it. Now that I’ve got an idea of what it is, I don’t think that I could only eat 20g of carbs a day, you’re very strong and determined! I wouldn’t start the Keto diet, but it was very interesting getting to know more about it =)

    1. Author

      I felt like that at the start! Everything has carbs in it seems like and I had no idea how I was going to manage to cut them out but it gets a lot easier as you go and learn the ropes!

  10. Wow! Losing 51 pounds is absolutely amazing, go girl! I’ve not really heard much about Keto before but your post is really informative and I learned a lot. It’s sounds like a really effective way to lose weight and you are proof it actually works! 💖 xx

    Bexa | http://www.hellobexa.com

    1. Author

      Thanks so much! It is very effective for many people and I found it to be a way of eating I can stick to which is what really sold me on it. I still get to eat a lot of the stuff I love and those I can’t can usually be turned keto with only a few adjustments so that really helped! I’m glad you found the post informative!

  11. I have never heard of keto before but now I know so much. Thanks for the new knowledge.

  12. Thank you so much for the information. I like how you broke it down to describe each category. I have been eating lazy Keto for 5 days now. Again, thank you!

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