For the past few months, I have been noticing a growing online chatter about Keto – “Try the Keto Diet, trust me!”, “I lost 100lbs on Keto“, “Tim Tebow does Keto” etc… Obviously it caught my eye. But I really am done with the latest fads and headlines – I CAN’T DO IT ANYMORE. Then I stumbled upon ‘The Magic Pill” on Netflix and I was just totally convinced that it made sense to at least give it a go.
I’m not going to explain what Keto is because I don’t want to get it wrong or start a riot, but essentially it is low carb, high fat (oils, avocado, nuts moreso than deep-fried, saturated animal fats fyi) and moderate protein. I tried it in November, and bar one work meal with a set menu (I avoided the bread etc) and a hiking weekend where I added in a few carbs for the expended energy, I stayed pretty on track for the month. I was away in December, which is why I just wanted to try this to see if it was something I’d be interested to do in future. And this is what I found:
- Low Carb Suits Me. I’ve always known that a low carb diet suits me. I do have a slight intolerance to wheat as I spoke about in this post, but also just feel lighter when I don’t base all of my meals around heavy, starchy foods like bread, pasta and rice. Part of the reason I went for the Keto diet is because I knew I would feel good on it – and I knew I’d get results quickly, even if just in the first couple of weeks which would spur me on. That’s just how my willpower works. I know myself when it comes to this kind of thing.
- I’m not afraid of high fat foods. Although I don’t feel one I should live my life on pork scratchings, I don’t think that holding off on the avocado and olive oil is going to make me very happy. In fact, I rather enjoy piling them up on my plate!
- Protein is not the be all and end all. Having spent years reading about high protein diets and trying to up my protein, I was very interested to read that in fact, too much protein is broken down as sugar (like carbs) in your body. (I’m not an expert – I just read various versions of this in various places – please google for a proper explanation!)
- I do better without sugar. This may seem like an obvious one, but I am a bit of a sugar fiend, so when you take it off the table for a few weeks and cravings go away, then actually everything starts to taste better which I found to be a very welcome surprise.
- Water is LIFE. It really is important for EVERYTHING. Whenever I drink more water, I feel sooo much better. My hair is better, my skin is better, I crave less sugar, I feel lighter and slimmer & more alert – which leads to better productivity & focus throughout the day. I actually feel more proud when I wake up and am not dying of thirst (which was starting to happen pre-Keto), but I forced myself to drink a lot in the beginning of the 30 days and then I just got into a good habit and really love the feeling of being hydrated, so I will carry that on.
- Veggies are Tasty. With no carbs on the plate and less of a focus on protein, I had to fill up the plate with more vegetables and when you can roast them in olive oil, fry them in coconut oil and dip them in avocado, they taste FANTASTIC. I’ve definitely been inspired by Keto to eat more vegetables. My current obsession is roasted broccoli (with extra virgin olive oil, Himalayan pink salt & pepper) with a dollop of smashed avocado on top. I’m craving it every day.
- I don’t want to live by rules or think about what I’m eating all the time – a diet where I can’t have houmous is a problem for me. That’s one of the things I actually craved. I love crudités & roasted vegetables with houmous. I had to take a night off when I had a work dinner with a set menu about half way through and I hated that I felt compromised. And I don’t want that for my future.
There are certain things I will take away from the Keto diet, but the full-on Keto rules are not for me. I’m glad I tried it, but what I learnt was that I will be happy to eat low carb, moderate protein & sugar free in future! I will not be afraid of healthy fats and I will watch my portions. I think with anything, consistency is key.
Any questions, ask below!