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OKL Chart – How to Keep Track of Macros on the Keto Diet

By Angelo Sorbello

The road to weight loss is one that’s only paved for the unwavering as it’s not really the most straightforward task to effectively accomplish. There are plenty of effective diet plans to commit to, but you’re not usually sure of the outcome of such commitment.

According to a large number of experts, a ketogenic diet is arguably the most fruitful diet plan among the rest. Setting out on a keto diet, however, can feel a bit confusing and frustrating if you have no idea how it works exactly.

Like all diet plans, a keto diet is centered around the process of tracking your macros. There are several means of tracking your macros online, but they’re not always the most accurate because they tend to work with percentages.

One of the most precise methods that you can track your macros with on a ketogenic diet is by using an OKL chart. Unlike keto calculators, an OKL chart is a bulletproof system that can help you in your quest of reaching your ideal weight in record time.

In hopes of helping you achieve the physique you desire, this article is going to cover everything you need to know about the use of an OKL chart, how it works, and why exactly you should start using one. Let’s jump right into it.

What are Macros?

Macronutrients are the essential nutrients that your body seeks in specific quantities when on a diet. Macros are primarily broken down into proteins, carbs, and fats.

Like we’ve just mentioned above, most means of monitoring macros for ketogenic diets rely on percentages. Ideally, the rate of carbohydrates in the body should range from 3% to 5%, 15% to 20% for proteins, and 75% and 80% for fats. However, the human body only recognizes exact quantities and not percentages; that’s where an OKL chart comes in handy.

By weighing your macros accurately, you’re ensuring that your body maintains a state of nutritional ketosis, which is a term that’s used to refer to the state if the body when it starts to use fat as fuel instead of glucose. This is going to help those who want to lose a notable amount of weight quickly.

What is an OKL Chart?

Optimal Ketogenic Living, or OKL, is a simple and guesswork-free chart that indicates the precise quantity of macros that you need to consume daily to complete a ketogenic diet plan.

This method was initially created for the Optimal Ketogenic Living Facebook group created by Raymund Edwards back in 2015. Since then, the chart has started gaining a lot of momentum and became extremely popular among dieters for being one of the simplest and most accurate ways of tracking your macros.

Beginners should have an easy time using an OKL chart as it helps reveal the exact amount of protein, fat, and carbs that you need to eat daily, so there’s really little to no chances of error. Not only that, but it also helps show you what can and can’t be achieved on a keto diet.

Now, you might be wondering whether a method found on a Facebook group is worthwhile or not. The figures used in the OKL chart to track macronutrients are based on Dr. Stephen Phinney’s recommendations, who’s the co-founder and Chief Medical Officer of the Virta Health program, which is a medication-free program for the treatment of type-2 diabetes.

Although the recommendation of dietary fat might have sparked some controversy, the chart does an excellent job of clearing the misconceptions that many dieters have about consuming dietary fats and protein.

Why Use the OKL Chart?

The OKL chart implements data achieved from numerous scientific studies on low-carb and ketogenic nutrition, giving its users an experts-approved system and a guaranteed outcome.

One of the reasons why the OKL chart is favored by many is because it focuses on the physical health and condition of the body rather than weight loss alone.

Not to mention that the OKL chart is a much easier method of tracking your macros, as you get the correct amount of macros to work with by simply finding your row in the chart without the input of personal data.

Moreover, the OKL chart presents an actionable range of nutrients that you can work with, which isn’t found in ketogenic calculators where you’re faced with estimate values that don’t offer much flexibility.

How to Use the OKL Chart?

The OKL chart is divided into two sections based on gender, so the first step is to find the appropriate part for you. Next step is to select your height in centimeters or inches on the left-hand side of the gender section.

Once you’ve identified your current row, you’ll discover the exact amount of carbs, protein, and dietary fats that you need to consume daily by reading across that row horizontally.

Carbohydrates

Like many keto programs, the OKL chart uses net carbs instead of the total amount of carbs. The net grams of carbohydrates is basically the number you get when you take the fiber grams out of the total amount of carbohydrates that you get from a low-carb food.

The net grams of carbohydrates derived from the OKL chart is the maximum intake of carbs per day, which means that you can’t exceed the amount. The only case in which alteration to the net grams of carbohydrate is allowed is if you’re cutting down on them.

The main reason a ketogenic diet is so concerned with the reduction of carbohydrate is that it helps reduce the percentage of glucose in your body. Also, you don’t have to worry about not getting a sufficient amount of carbs as the OKL chart compensates such reduction with an increase in protein.

Most dietary programs tend to apply the same amount of carbohydrate for all keto dieters regardless of the physical structure of the body. On the other hand, the OKL chart takes the body’s physical structure into consideration and tailors the level of carbohydrates based on it.

Protein

While there’s no specific range that you need to stick to in terms of protein requirements, the amount of protein stated on the OKL chart is the minimum amount for each day. It’s highly recommended by all keto programs that you don’t go below that number no matter what you’re trying to achieve.

The emphasis on dietary protein is due to the existence of amino acids within it, which the body requires to protect the muscles and prevent it from deteriorating. Consuming healthy amounts of proteins daily will help your body rebuild broken cell structures within your body.

Further, people with higher muscle mass will have an easier time burning more calories, which is why the OKL chart and most keto programs seek to protect muscle tissues through protein. You should also know that protein provides the body with a significant amount of the energy that it needs.

Fats

Unlike carbohydrates and protein, dietary fats are given in a specific range rather than an exact value. Once you have established your carbs level and have consumed your daily requirement of protein, it’s time to track your fat grams.

The amount of fat intake is mainly dependent on your goal. If you’re moving towards weight loss, it makes sense to consume amounts that are on the lower end of the scale. To maintain your weight, you’ll have to stick to the amount that you feel helps compensate your losses. Lastly, for mass gain, go for the higher end of the fats range.

Why are fats not given in a specific quantity? It’s because dieters have unique requirements that can vary from one person to another. Consuming lower-range fats will lead your body to burn the stored body fat as a driving force for your exerted efforts, which, as a result, helps reduce your weight significantly.

OKL Chart Vs. Keto Calculators

The market is currently flooded with a variety of keto calculators that you can either use online or download onto your smartphone. And we do mean a range because it’s obviously clear that all keto calculators aren’t really made equal, which can be very confusing as each calculator is going to present you with different results.

We think the reason why keto calculators often vary in their estimations is that each calculator is probably based on a different diet plan than others. If you’re really taking your goal towards weight loss seriously, it’s better to go about it with an OKL chart as it’s much more accurate.

How Do Keto Calculators Work?

Keto calculators start by gathering some personal information such as gender, height, weight, age, percentage of body fat, activity level, caloric deficit, protein intake, and carb intake.

Based on the information you’ve provided, and the desired outcome that you wish to achieve, the values displayed by the calculator will change. However, if you’re planning on using a calculator, it’s better that you become aware of your desired macros as the results might not be ketogenic.

Calculators will assume that you’re aware of your body fat percentage and your desired caloric deficit, leaving a massive room for error, which leads to very inaccurate advice from the software most of the time.

Calculators will also require you to provide accurate information to generate the needed amount of macros, which is almost impossible since most men and women tend to overestimate certain factors such as the intensity of their exercise.

Conclusion

Weight loss requires a lot of dedication and a lot of trial and error. Regardless of the method, you choose to stick to. You’re still going to have to do some experimentation to figure out what suits you and your body best.

Keto calculators are a good starting point, but they aren’t going to give you the precise information that you need to take some of that weight off. This is why an OKL chart is highly recommended.

Not only do OKL charts offer accurate indications, but they’re effortless to use, and they offer you a range of macros that you can work with, including minimums and maximums, which makes them very actionable.

By using an OKL chart, you give yourself the freedom to experiment and understand the effect that carbs, proteins, and fats have on your body.

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About the Author

Sushi and coffee enthusiast. I build companies that make a positive difference.

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