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How I’m Rockin’ The Ketogenic Diet and You Can Too!
First of all, let me just thank you all for the love and support you sent my way after I posted about my 45lb weight loss. I wrote that post because I knew there had to be others struggling like I was. I realize it wasn’t my usual decor or style post but I just had to share.
Ok let’s get down to it. I wanted to share with you more details on how I eat a high fat/ moderate protein/ low carb way of eating aka The Ketogenic Diet. If you missed how I lost 45 lbs you can see that here. I’ve been able to get my body to burn fat for fuel instead of carbohydrates just through the foods I put in my body. I count my macros and I test my blood sugar and ketone levels. And I’ve lost 45lbs doing all this. Now I’m sure you are wondering what does any of that means and how can I do it too?
Let’s talk about what the the Ketogenic diet is and how it works. The ketogenic diet consists of eating a diet high in healthy fats, about 70-80% of your daily calories. You also eat a moderate amount of protein. You will get about 10-20% of your calories from protein. And you should be getting about 5% of your calories from carbs. All of these together are called your macronutrients or macros. So when you hear someone say they are tracking their macros, they are tracking their fat, protein and carbs. I use an app called My Fitness Pal to track these.
The whole goal of the Ketogenic way of eating is to get your body into a state of ketosis. Meaning your body will start burning fat instead of sugar. When your body burns fat it releases ketones into your bloodstream. Ketones are then used for energy by your body instead of using glucose (carbs) When your body gets into this state the results are amazing. First and foremost, you can lose weight! But an equally awesome benefit is that your brain loves ketones. You will feel more focused and energetic all day long.
So how to do get into Ketosis and how do you know you did it? Well, it can take a little while for your body to adjust to burning fat for fuel instead of glucose. Anywhere from a week or 2 to a month. But once you have achieved ketosis you are considered fat adapted.
Now here is the cold hard truth about becoming fat adapted. When you transition from a high carb diet to a low carb diet, you will most likely feel like crap. This is what is known as the Keto Flu. You might feel sluggish, sleepy, achey, crabby and overly weepy. Sounds fun right? But this is temporary! And it helps keep you on the Keto wagon, cause once you get over the Keto flu ain’t nobody got time for it again!
Once you cross over to the other side to being a lean, mean (Ok, nice. Still very, very nice!) fat burning machine you will have increased energy, loss of brain fog, loss of cravings, hunger satiety. All good stuff! And you will begin to lose body fat.
One of the questions I am asked the most often is what about your cholesterol? Listen, I’m not an expert but there are many experts on this subject out there. I’ll refer you to them for the science. One book I particularly recommend is Cholesterol Clarity by Jimmy Moore. It’s a very eye opening book regarding cholesterol and how it works in your body and what all those cholesterol numbers mean. If you have cholesteral fears on a Ketogenic Diet this is a must read.
There are a few tools that I have used on my Ketogenic Journey to help me get into ketosis, monitor my ketones and keep on chugging along. The first is a blood ketone meter. I use this one HERE. And I use these ketone testing strips HERE. There are other ways to test your ketone levels but nothing as accurate as just testing your blood. Trust me, it took me a long time to actually poke my finger and draw blood. You should have seen me dancing around my kitchen! But once I did it, it got so much easier. At first, I tested every day. Now I test once every few weeks or sometimes after I eat something different just to see how it effects my blood sugar or ketone levels. When you test your blood ketones if they measure between .5 to 5.0 mmol then congrats, you’re in ketosis.
I really do love to cook. Baking, meh, not so much. I have found one particular Keto cookbook author named Maria Emmerich that I love and her cookbooks kick you know what. Each recipe has a photo which is a must for me in a cookbook. Gotta see if my results look like the real deal! Maria has amazing recipes and even better Keto treats. (yes, I eat dessert!) So far none of her recipes have been fails (ok maybe one, but that was totally my fault!) She has meal plans in them too, which makes putting together a day in Keto life much easier for you. You can find my favorites HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE.
And finally, this is just a personal tip from me to help you navigate this way of eating in a sugar filled world. Especially as you are starting out on your Keto journey. Bacon. Yup Bacon. Bacon will get you through! Get the good kind, no nitrates, sugar free if you can find it. And buy lots of it. Pre-cook it so that it is always ready when you have a craving or come face to face with a box of donuts that are seducing you with their sweet glazeyness. If I know that I am heading out and might be faced with a non keto dietary challenge, I pack a little bacon in a baggie in my purse. Invited out for chips and salsa with friends? Eat some bacon instead. Cocktail party with sugar laden libations? Bacon. Have you ever not felt satisfied after eating bacon? It will help you avoid the temptations, make people wonder about you as you pull bacon from your handbag and all the cute puppy dogs in town will love you! Eventually, as you lose your cravings you can slowly step away from the bacon.
That’s all for now friends, I’ll be back soon with more Keto tips and tricks and of course some decor and style posts too. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments below or chat with me on Instagram or Facebook. You can also follow me on Pinterest for lots of awesome Keto recipes and of course all the pretty things.
I’ve linked up a few of my getting started Keto Essentials here for easy reference!