For me, the Ketogenic diet is life changing, view altering, and an opportunity to heal your mind, body and spirit. It is the “I feel spry” diet. It is the “adapting to a new and happy lifestyle” diet. Is it hard to do? Not really. But it can be hard if one goes into it without understanding the principles of the Ketogenic diet and if you do not prepare yourself. Do you need time, patience and commitment? Yes! Is it worth it? Hell yes!
The Ketogenic diet calls for removing all sugar and carbohydrates (except non-starchy carbohydrates), consuming high healthy fats and a moderate amount of good quality proteins. I consume the majority of my calories from natural fats, such as butter, olive oil, coconut oil and fats from foods. For example, eggs, grass-fed beef, chicken and fish are just a few. These fats have virtually no carbohydrates.
When you restrict sugar and carbohydrates from your body, increase fat and eat moderate amounts of protein your body switches from burning sugar to burning fat. Our body makes ketones and blood sugar levels are lowered. As ketones rise in our bodies, the body relies less on glucose and more on fat and ketones for fuel.
This is an extremely powerful and healing diet. It has shown to be effective for improving or reversing diabetes, insulin resistance and weight loss as well as a whole host of other medical conditions such as cancer, Alzheimer’s, heart disease, heart burn and inflammation.
What several weeks of the Ketogenic Diet has done for me:
- INCREASED ENERGY
- LESS BLOATED
- STOMACH SHRINKING
- INCREASED AWARENESS
- BEING IN TUNE WITH WHAT MY BODY NEEDS
- INCREASE IN SELF CONFIDENCE
- LESS ECZEMA OUTBREAKS IN BOTH FREQUENCY AND INTENSITY.
- SUGAR CRAVINGS MUCH LESS INTENSE
- STABLE BLOOD SUGAR LEVELS THROUGHOUT THE DAY
- IMPROVED GUT ISSUES/ NO MORE GASSY NIGHTS
Preparation is key with the Ketogenic diet and knowing what to expect the first 3 weeks is very important. I was very tired and I had little energy to do anything. I was cranky because my body was detoxing from the sugar. I had headaches and a few muscle cramps. I even had a couple of bouts of diarrhea. But all that cleared up for me within a week’s time. Having a stockpile in my “keto cabinet” has been instrumental in knocking out these symptoms.
Homemade bone broth is rich in nutrients and excellent for gut health among other things. I make a big pot of either chicken broth or beef broth and each day, sometimes twice a day during the first 3 weeks, I would have a cup with sea salt, coconut oil, and garlic.
Meal prepping for the week saves time and money. I make low carb, high fat casseroles and I can have up to 10 individual servings in small containers to take on the go or have dinner ready when I get home. Just warm up and eat!
Sleep is extremely important. Getting 6-7 hours of sleep has been challenging but I am seeing a difference when I wake up in the morning. I don’t feel disoriented or feel like I’m dragging my body. My energy level during the day is better than what it used to be months ago. Also, I restrained from exercises temporarily. Currently, I am stretching daily and doing abdominal crunches to strengthen my lower back.
Daily journaling keeps me on track and helps me to tweak my food. It keeps me accountable and helps me to be aware of my habits and emotions. I track fat, carbs and protein intake. I journal how I’m feeling day-to-day, note any changes in moods and any physical symptoms I may be experiencing. I also chart my blood sugar levels first thing in the morning and two hours after dinner.
Each passing week I am feeling increasingly better. Where I was just over 3 months ago seems like a lifetime ago and it was a place of desperation. It was a place of being stuck in a pit and clawing unsuccessfully to get out. I have had feelings of hopelessness for years when it came to my health. I was fearful that I would share the same fate of my relatives; A long sickly life with the possibility of breast cancer, diabetes, heart attacks and addictions. The fear I had of leaving my only child without a mother at an early age weighed me down more than all the weight I lost and gained over 37 years. I don’t think I want to do the math on that but you get the point.
Educating myself about the Ketogenic Diet has stripped all the fear I had, restored confidence that I can have complete control over my health and in other aspects of my life as well. I am beginning to feel a bit of what life will be like with this new outlook on life and its pretty exciting already. These past 7 days I have gotten out of bed feeling like I can take on the day and look forward to what my day may bring.
So I am saying goodbye to fear and anxiety, goodbye to being stuck, goodbye to self-loathing and saying welcome to good health, a life of joy and personal growth.
The road to optimal health is a long one for me, I know. However once there, it will be a life of freedom, endless possibilities and a life of feeling spry.