The Keto Diet - Keto for Beginners - Dirty Keto Vs. Clean Keto

Keto scrabble tiles

Every day, more people turn to various diets to lose weight, live healthier lives, and feel better. Keto is one of those diets with many fans across the globe who swear by its effectiveness. If you’re wondering about this particular diet, this keto guide for beginners is for you. Here we will explain what the keto diet entails, your food options, and how clean and dirty keto differ. So don’t miss this read!

What is a Keto Diet? 

A keto or a ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carb diet. In this diet, you limit your carbohydrate intake significantly to turn fat into the primary energy source for your body. When you cut down on carbs, your insulin levels decrease, allowing your fat stores to act as fuel. According to numerous studies, this can result in weight loss and improve your health. It’s a diet that induces your body into ketosis.

What is Ketosis?

Keto for beginners who don’t understand the concept of ketosis can be challenging. Ketosis, however, is simpler than you think. It’s the metabolic state in which your body lacks enough glucose and uses fat as its primary energy source. Your liver will break fat cells into smaller molecules called ketones so your brain and organs can use them. This phenomenon makes it possible for you to burn more fat on a dirty or clean keto diet without feeling hungry. 

How Can You Get Into Ketosis?

Various delicious keto recipes can help you enter the ketosis state. The basic keto rules for beginners state that you must eat only 20-50 grams of carbs each day and fill your body with fats from meat, nuts, and healthy oils to achieve ketosis within days. You should also watch your protein consumption because too much of them can turn into glucose and delay ketosis. 

Intermittent fasting is another way you can reach ketosis faster. If you’re following a dirty keto diet, try to eat in an 8-hour window and rest your digestive system for the remaining 16 hours. There are also helpful keto tools for beginners, such as blood, breath, and urine tests, that can tell you whether you have entered ketosis or not. 

Planning Your Keto Diet

Keto food on a pan

It’s best to plan your meals ahead to follow this diet correctly and stay safe. Pick a protein source, add some low-carb vegetables, and mix a healthy fat source for the perfect keto meal. 

Here is a short list of foods and drinks you can enjoy on a keto diet and some items you should avoid. 

Keto Foods

Keto Drinks

  • Water
  • Occasional wine
  • Unsweetened tea 
  • Unsweetened coffee

Foods to Avoid

  • Bread
  • Muffins
  • Pancakes
  • Pasta
  • Rice
  • Cakes
  • Sugar
  • Fruit juice
  • Alcohol

Keto for Beginners: Different Types of Keto Diets

There are different types of categorizations for keto diets. For instance, standard ketogenic diets (SKD) consist of low-carb, moderate protein, and high-fat foods. On the other hand, cyclical ketogenic diets (CKD) involve periods of higher-carb foods.

One of the most popular categorizations puts this diet into clean and dirty keto. Let’s explore what each of these types entails. 

What is Clean Keto?

The clean keto diet involves wholesome, fresh foods that are as close to their natural states as possible. Foods like red meat, poultry, fish, vegetables, healthy fats, and nuts belong to this category. These nutrient-rich keto options are great for beginners and can help you meet your daily macronutrients on a clean diet. 

What is Dirty Keto

The dirty keto diet, also known as lazy keto, involves low-carb processed and packaged foods. Canned goods, packaged keto snacks, vegetable oils, processed meats, processed cheeses, and margarine belong to this group. Although they’re still keto-friendly, they don’t provide you with the number of nutrients that a clean diet does. 

Dirty Keto Vs. Clean Keto: Which One is Better?

You might be wondering which type of keto diet is better for beginners. While it may be obvious that a clean diet is always better, there are key differences you should consider. 

Weight Loss

A woman measuring her waist

You can lose body fat on either keto diet if you limit your carb intake. However, foods in a dirty keto diet can cause you to overeat and reach a plateau. So for sustainable fat loss, a clean diet is better. 


Eating healthier can be costly at times. This gives an edge to dirty diets that offer cheaper processed foods. However, these foods can lead to health conditions and cost you more money on medical treatments in the long run.


A dirty diet is more convenient for beginners to keto who don’t have time to meal prep. Even those on a clean diet may sometimes turn to packaged foods. If you choose the healthiest processed option, you should be fine.


You can go over your carb limit with packaged foods. Unless you’re meticulously tracking every detail of the processed foods you eat, it’s best to stay on a clean keto diet to maintain the ketosis state. 

Benefits of a Keto Diet

Many beginners are attracted to keto diets for their numerous health benefits. While more studies are needed to confirm the effects of a clean or dirty keto diet on the body and long-term health, currently identified benefits sound very promising. 

Some of the health benefits of a keto diet include:

  • Regulating blood pressure 
  • Improving metabolic health
  • Improving fatty liver disease
  • Slowing cancerous tumor growth
  • Burning fat without causing hunger 
  • Potentially reversing type 2 diabetes
  • Controlling type 1 and type 2 diabetes
  • Treating epilepsy, migraines, and acne
  • Reducing symptoms of Alzheimer’s and mental health disorders

Keep in mind that research on some of these benefits is still in its early stages and a long way from being conclusive. 

Potential Risks of Keto Diet for Beginners

Keto diets are usually safe and provide a healthy amount of nutrients for the body. However, some people, especially beginners who are not doing it right, may experience adverse side effects such as:

  • Kidney stones
  • Vitamin and mineral deficiencies
  • Keto flu with signs like diarrhea, constipation, nausea, and vomiting

Start Your Keto Diet the Right Way

Now that you have this keto guide for beginners, you can start living a healthier life. If you’re looking for foods to add to your meals, you can browse through Wildly Organic’s vast collection of high-quality keto-friendly products. These non-GMO goodies will become staples of your keto diet and help you along your journey. So shop Wildly Organic now and get 10% off your first order.

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