Putting the ketogenic diet to the day to day test
first learned about keto by writing and studying about diabetes. I knew that diabetes could be controlled by the elimination of carbohydrates, but the concept of ketosis was still a little blurry at that time. Slowly I’ve begun to hear more about it.
I’m not diabetic or obese but I had a different problem. I had low blood glucose after consuming carbs due to a fast metabolism. Something lot’s of people have. Occasional irritation if meals came a little late, and inability to go without eating for longer periods of time was common. Some may call this a non diabetic hypoglycemia.
So I decided to eat more fatty foods and that alone completely cured the problem. I was able to even miss lunch or dinner and not have hypoglycemic events. But when I learned about ketones, a whole new world of possibilities opened up. I simply started to eat less carbs and continue to eat more fatty foods. I soon realized the potential of eating more fats and how it mimicked the millions of years of human evolution.
Keto diet is simple in theory but it is more complex when we try to really do it. Here’s what I’m finding out. Instead of bothering everybody with my talks about keto -which really annoys some people, I’ll write them all here. A conversation with myself of for whoever find it interesting, and please interact. I would love to hear your experiences.
Nov 23, 2017
There’s no better day than Thanksgiving day to add my first entry. Not exactly a day when you’re trying to eliminate carbs. Thanksgiving is a carb fest if anything. Pies, breads, cakes, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce with tons of sugar. This is a day when you’re going to throw your ketosis out the window.
This is good because it summarizes a lot of the problems people have trying to get started with keto – how to resist the carb fest we’re exposed everyday, and specially the holidays.
There’s plenty of fat. As the person serving me the turkey said “let me give you a heart attack” as she serves me the turkey skin, and I replied. “Oh please give me more of that skin, give me all of it”.
How could I resist the cranberry sauce and the sweet potatoes. Only for one dinner. I just don’t believe in being too radical.
At this point I realize it is better to go slow into ketosis, so I have no problems going back and forth. I’ve spent my entire life using glucose for energy and I giving the body some time to adapt is a good thing for me. I’ve also realize that there are many levels of being keto adapted. Living entirely out of ketones is to me at the moment something possible but not entirely necessary. I feel I’ve came a long way from where I was when 100% glycose burner. For the moment I’m happy being on ketosis for periods of time.
The more keto adapted you are, the better you become at handling shifts in your diet. For example you can eat lots of carbs and the impact will be different than for people who are not keto adapted. Your metabolism will handle glycose better, making your less hungry and maybe storing less fat.
Nov, 24 2017
Back at home and is keto breakfast again. Breakfast is the easiest meal to be 100% keto. Eggs, avocados, cheese, oils, salami, and coffee with heavy cream. Fat bomb breakfast. No carbs whatsoever. I don’t feel like the Thanksgiving dinner last night had any adverse effect on me. I didn’t feel stuffed, and I didn’t stuff myself either.
I didn’t need to get stuffed and that is already a part of being keto adapted? I was not very hungry. There was good food and I ate to satisfaction, when I was full I stopped. I noticed how other people were very hungry and they actually skipped breakfast so they would be extra hungry. I just don’t see the point of that anymore – another side of the keto state of mind – or stomach.
Lunch: salmon swimming in olive oil and bunches of broccoli swimming in butter. After that one tablespoon of avocado oil and one of black seeds oil. It did the trick. I know that because I went to work at 3 to do my shift until 11 and wasn’t hungry at all, still ate some leftovers from Thanksgiving.
Nov 25, 2017
Today is gym day. I never eat much before going to the gym. I have not tried to go on a empty stomach, so I eat one scramble egg and a cup of coffee. It works just fine. There is no better way to kick your body into ketosis, than to work out while fasting. I guess my next step will be to to fasting.
Coffee however tend to knock you out of ketosis. I’ve read that somewhere and it makes sense. One time at work I was fine and close to lunch but not hungry at all. After having a cup of coffee, I became hungry and tired after 30 minutes. I could feel the difference.
Lunch: a nice fatty piece of salmon, and a ton of kale swimming in olive oil. After lunch one tbs of black seed oil and 2 of avocado oil. But here’s my problem: I don’t think this was a even 70% fat at all. I’m having a real problem cumming up with all this fat. I guess the fat is in caloric terms so it’s deceiving? Not sure.
I guess the fat content can be also measured by how long you can stay without eating? Will have to see how I feel later.
Nov 26, 2017
Sleeping well is one of the most cherished side effects of keto. It is just the quality of the sleep that is different. Maybe because you have more energy during the day, you’re more tired and sleep better? No sure. But it works.
Breakfast is a fat fest and it is easy to figure out, and that is because the eggs are such a big part of it. I decided to indulge however and I had a couple of skinny toasts with a little bit of honey on top and lot’s of butter. I’m going easy into this thing and there is no need to be strict. Hopefully it wont knock me out of ketosis – that is most unlikely because I just had a string of good keto days.
Nov 27, 2017
Testing the ketosis power. Had a fatty fat fat breakfast and really didn’t eat much for lunch, just a keto shake (mostly fat) and a few slices of cheese and some macademia nuts. Went to work at 1430 as usual. Had a cup of coffee before going to work. I started to feel light headed at about 1630. So, I knew I was being kicked out of ketosis and I think the coffee was to blame.
But I remembered water. So I drank a couple of bottles of water and I the light headedness went away and my energy returned. So yes, remember to drink water. Water is needed to create ketones? I guess so.
I didn’t bring my dinner so I went out and had a double cheese burger with an avocado I brought and some macademia nuts, I guess the two burger patties were plenty of carbs, but not enough to upset things.
Dec 9, 2017
As the holidays approach and you’re invited to parties, keto goes right right the window. What can I do. Last night at a friend’s there was plenty of food to choose from. Instead of making a huge plate with everything in it, I was selective. I picked just 2 or three items. I went for the pork but it didn’t have much fat in it and some cabbage dish thing.
I did what I could to stay away from the carbs. But there was wine and there was deserts so of course this was way out of keto but here’s the good thing. When you are keto adapted, you actually deal much better with carbs. It’s kind of like, your body is not too impressed by the giant amount of carbs. It waits to see a pattern. Our body is very smart.
I’m relaxed through the holiday season and will not miss out on all the delicious foods. But make adjustments when is possible. One of the biggest problems is that fat is considered a bad thing. So people make sure that everything they cook is fat free.
When everything is carbs I have a little antidote that always seem to remind my body of the fat side, and that is black seeds oil. This oil to me in an ally to keto world. I don’t really have any scientific data to back this up: but black seeds oil seem to have a intimate relationship with ketosis. I say that by experience and also I suspect it is true because of it’s glucose lowering properties.
Dec 10, 2017
Yes, fasting is great to get your body into ketosis but intense physical activity without eating anything before it, is even better. Went to a capoeira class at noon with only a fat bomb breakfast on board. It is not almost 4 PM and after almost 3 hours of intense exercise I’m not quite hungry yet.
Yesterday I had lots of carbs and I should be more hungry but I’m not. I think when we’re more keto adapted we even manage the carb loads better. Maybe you have better reserves of glycogen in the muscles? I’m not sure. Something like this could never had happen before but now I’m perfectly able to pull it off.
I guess the bottom line lesson here is that you don’t need to control your ketosis just by cutting carbs or eating more fat. You can use the equation of: energy expenditure X fasting. My experience indicates it works wonders. What do you think? Everyone is different.
Dec 11, 2017
If there are things you notice when you’re in ketosis, there are the things you notice when you’re not. One of them is how your sleep is not as good when you’re on carbs. After a night of going for the carbs at a friend’s house last night my sleep was less than good. Waking up several times during the night and simply not sleeping as deep as I would like. Mostly due to the wine I suppose.
On the other hand I remember that when I’m more on ketosis my sleep is deep and restful just like the kind of sleep I used to have when a child.
Dec 12, 2017
Teaching the body how to burn fat
The cool thing about starting a ketogenic diet is that weather you do it 100% or not it will always benefit your burning fat vs burning glucose ratio. But simply achieving a few days of ketosis, your body will have a much easier time burning fat when it needs.
We spent all our lives burning glucose and almost never needing to burn fat but when you start playing with your ketosis buttons, something new happens. You body becomes more able to switch modes: from burning glucose to burning fat.
Image credit: Pixabay