The ketogenic diet or better known as the “keto diet” is a low carb diet that enables the body to lose weight faster and more effectively.
When you start the journey on this diet you can experience lots of health benefits which we will be talking about.
I’m s excited to tell you about my journey on this diet which has been proven to work and heal many diseases.
The keto diet has been around for many years but it seems that just recently started to get a lot of traction.
researchers have used this low carb diet on kids with epilepsy, people with hormonal imbalance, diabetes, high blood pressure just to name a few.
Here you’ll learn how to eat a keto diet based on real foods and visual guides to help you understand better.
I know you are excited to get to the details, but let me just give you some advice!
Disclaimer: As, with any diet, you should seek the advice of a doctor or physician before starting, especially if you are taking any medication or suffering from ANY ailments.
So What Is Really The “Keto” Diet?
The keto diet is an eating plan that features a low intake of carbs <50gms to be exact which are macronutrients found in food.
The main focus on the keto diet is that you eat fewer carbs forcing your body to use fat as energy, therefore, using that energy as the main source for body functioning.
Just think about this when we eat unhealthy carbs our body sends a message to our brain waking up the pressure center which will make us happy.
This becomes an addiction which is why many people believe they can’t do a low carb diet.
Now let’s be clear carbs will give you a quick boost in energy but they will NOT sustain you for long.
This means that you will soon be hungry and the worst part is that you will eat before the body got a chance to burn the carbs eaten on the previous meals your insulin level will still be up and you WILL store all those carbs as fat.
Keto Food List
How To Get Into Ketosis Fast
Ketosis simply means that your body is fat adapted, using fat as its main source of energy.
The secret to getting into ketosis is to consume less than <20g of carbs (note this number is different for everybody).
A lot of people do a 3 day water fast to get into ketosis fast which is great because you detox your body on those 3 days and start with the right mindset from the beginning.
How Are Ketones Produce?
ketones are produced when you eat a small amount of carbs (for weight loss is recommended to limit intake to <20g per day), a moderate amount of protein per day because if consumed in excess it will be broken down into sugar and rest of your nutrition should come from healthy fats.
The liver creates ketones from fat. These ketones then are used as fuel sources throughout the body, especially for the brain.
The brain is an organ that is always working and consumes lots of energy, and it can’t run on fat directly (ketones) or it can only run on glucose (sugar).
Dr. Henry Rawle Geyelin discovered that when our body is in a state of fasting our glucose levels drop which means that ketones will increase.
When you start a ketogenic diet, your entire body switches its fuel supply from glucose to run mainly on fat.
Yes, that means burning fat 24-7. When your insulin levels are low, that’s when the fat burning process begins. Your body becomes a fat-burning machine burning fat at all times.
The Goal Of The Keto Diet
One of the most important things on this diet is for your body to deplete, get rid of, use up all of the glycogen stored in your body.
On this 21-day keto challenge, I wanted to give you all the information and tools you need to help you out and crush your goals. The recipes supplied are easy to make and very tasty!
6 Benefits Of Exercising While On Keto
This is just an FYI if you are following the keto diet correctly there is no need for you to exercise to lose weight.
Remember you are preparing your body to be a fat-burning machine and this is enough for you to accomplish your goals.
Now don’t get me wrong I still workout while on this diet. Here are 6 of the health benefits of working out.
1. Improved Bone Mineral Density
Studies show that resistance training improves bone mineral density in obese postmenopausal women.
2. Improved Immune System
Keto will boost your immune system. Meaning you will be less susceptible to getting sick due to the fact that your liver is working more smoothly and your body is ready to fight anything off.
3. Improving Diabetes By Increasing Insulin Sensitivity
It has been proven that the keto diet will lower your glucose levels but if you combine that with exercise your glucose levels will deplete faster therefore your body will require less insulin to get rid of glucose.
4. Brain Health
Exercising regularly changes the brain to improve memory and thinking skills. So the more you sweat the more the hippocampus the area in the brain responsible for memory and learning skill grows.
5. Cardiovascular Health
Physical activity helps prevents coronary heart diseases. This has been proven by the American Heart Association and is the main reason the doctor tells you to go for a 20 minutes walk every day.
6. Anti-Aging Benefits
Exercise may increase life expectancy by decreasing mortality risk factors like high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, stroke, and cancer
Please don’t go a run a marathon now! exercise should be used as a way to promote muscle tone and health not because it will help you burn more calories.
you have to be very careful with this, you have to have enough rest and eat enough in order to exercise, remember you are getting used to a new lifestyle and it will take time for your body to get used to it.
Fast Food Keto-Friendly Places
This information obtained from the NBC newsWebsite.
Use the McDonalds nutrition calculator to edit the ingredients and customize the nutrition information for any of their menu items.
- Artisan Grilled Chicken Sandwich, no bun, no ketchup: 2g carbs
- Bacon Ranch Grilled Chicken Salad, no dressing: 8g carbs (the Newman’s Own Ranch Dressing adds 8g carbs)
- Quarter Pounder, no bun, ketchup or cheese: 1 carb
- Egg McMuffin and most other breakfast sandwiches, no bread: 3-4g carbs
2. Burger King
The site No Bun Please outlines a lot of options for low-carb eating at Burger King.
- Whopper Jr., plain with no bun: 0g carbs
- Grilled Chicken Sandwich, no bun: 1g carbs
- Sausage, Egg & Cheese Croissanwich and most other breakfast sandwiches, no bread: 1-4g carb
Wendys my favorite place when it comes to fast food.
- Grilled Chicken Sandwich, no bun or sauce: 2g carbs
- Caesar side salad, no croutons with lemon garlic caesar dressing: 4 carbs
4. Taco Bell
Customize your meal with Taco Bell’s nutrition calculator to see exactly how many carbs you’re getting. This calculator will help you create the perfect meal since you can play with the carbs.
- Chicken Power Menu Bowl, no beans, rice, or sour cream: 6g carbs
- Shredded Chicken Burrito, no rice or tortilla: 2g carbs
- Grande Scrambler Burrito, no potato or tortilla: 7g carbs
Chipotle’s nutrition calculator lets you add and remove ingredients to customize your meal and your carbs.
- Keto Salad Bowl with carnitas, guacamole, tomatillo-red chili salsa, and cheese: 14g carbs
- Carnitas Burrito Bowl, no rice or beans, with fajita vegetables, cheese, and romaine lettuce: 7g carbs
To see the carb counts for many of Panera Bread’s options once you remove things like bread and croutons, check out No Bun Please.
- Caesar Salad with Chicken, no croutons: 7g carbs
- Heritage Ham & Swiss sandwich, no bread: 3g carbs
- Bacon, Egg, and Cheese and most other breakfast sandwiches, no bread: 1-2g carbs
These guys will supply your burger without a bun and without any hassle.
They will supply a lettuce wrap or you can take it to go in an aluminum tray. You can also pick your toppings from their menu board.
They also give extra cheese and extra bacon at no extra charge, if you find yourself dining in, they also have peanuts in the shell that you can nibble on while waiting for your burger.
Foods To Avoid On Keto
Let me start by saying that before you decided to eliminate any foods from your diet please talk to your doctor regarding new lifestyle changes.
Keep in mind that if you are an active athletic person your calorie intake will be higher than the regular person that has a sedentary lifestyle.
For example, I’m a nurse I work on my feet for 13hrs 4 times a week and I do high-intensity workouts so I eat 4 meals a day to keep up and some times it depends I might add a green smoothie. So listen to your body!
No foods are really off-limits on the keto diet. It’s about total carbohydrate intake and how you choose to “spend” your carbs.Dietitians Stone and Laura Dority, M.S., R.D., L.D., with Keto Knowledge LLC,
Remember that you are not trying to avoid protein but to consume it in moderation.
Because if you eat high amounts of protein it can raise your body’s insulin levels and at the same time lower the ketones.
A regular overweight person can consume around 35% of the protein in one day. That is around 35% of your maximum calorie intake for the day.
Cereal, crackers, rice, pasta, bread, and beer are high in carbohydrates. Even whole-wheat pasta and the new bean-based pasta are high in carbs. Consider alternatives like spiralized vegetables or shirataki noodles, which are healthier low-carb options.
Starchy vegetables and high-sugar fruits
Starchy vegetables contain more digestible carbohydrates than fiber and should be limited on the ketogenic diet.
These include corn, potatoes, sweet potatoes, and beets. Limit high-sugar fruits too, which spike your blood sugar more quickly than berries and have more carbohydrates.
Carb counts for high-sugar fruits: Source
- Banana (1 medium): 24 g net carbs (27 g total carbs)
- Raisins (1 oz. / 28 g): 21 g net carbs, 22 g total carbs)
- Dates (2 large): 32 g net carbs (36 g total carbs)
- Mango (1 cup, sliced): 22 g net carbs (25 g total carbs)
- Pear (1 medium): 21 g net carbs (27 g total carbs)
Carb counts for starchy vegetables: Source
- Corn (1 cup): 32 g net carbs (36 g total carbs)
- Potato (1 medium): 33 g net carbs (37 g total carbs)
- Sweet potato (1 medium): 20 g net carbs (24 g total carbs)
- Beets (1 cup, cooked): 14 g net carbs (17 g total carbs)
Factory farmed meats or Better Known “farm-raised” and fish contain high amounts of Omega-6 and other chemicals that can be harmful to humans.
Fresh milk Milk should ve avoided. All the good bacteria have been killed and are doing nothing for us. Also, 1 cup of milk contains 12g of carbs. Just saying skip it.
Sweetened foods and drinks should be avoided, for this reason, it is so important to read on the labels because many drinks will be advertised as sugar-free but are not.
Legumes and beans are one of the staple vegetables in our diet, these should be avoided along with lentils, kidney beans, and chickpeas.
Honey, syrup, and sugar in any form Avoid sugar, honey, maple syrup and other forms of sugar, which are high in carbohydrates and low in nutrients.
And on keto don’t listen to grandma when she says “honey is good for you”. Not when you are doing keto.
Root vegetables are some of the main culprits, potatoes, carrots, and parsnips, etc should all be avoided.
Condiments such as ketchup please just find a good substitute for it or make it yourself. This is my favorite recipe you can try.
Alcohol is a NO, NO its full of carbs and it should not be consumed when doing the keto diet.
Sauces – gravy or packet sauces contain flour or sugar, either choose low-carb versions or make your own
Yogurt – If it is not plain greek yogurt. Then it is not worth the carbs because flavor sweet it yogurt can contain up to 30gs of carbs.
Fat-Free Products avoid these remember we are doing keto we need the fat. Options can contain up to 12 grams of carbs per serving.
And lastly, one that defies all logic, low fat or diet products like sugar-free diet foods, these are highly processed and contain high amounts of carbs.
Keto Flu Warning Alert!
21 Day Meal Plan
The hardest part of anything we do in life is the beginning. that being said keto is not an exception to the rule. And the start is the worst part but don’t be discourage you got this! I promise you will make it through.
If you are ready to start then join the Keto Challenge and become the best version of yourself. This is the year to accomplish your health and weight loss goals.
The First 7-14 days of Keto: What To Expect
you might experience the keto flu an become a little sick. it’s good to understand why your body is going through this transition.
Remember that up to this day that you have decided to start keto your body has been using carbs as its main source of fuel and now you are changing that and entering the world of fat burning.
But don’t worry it only takes a short period of time for your body to transition into ketosis and start burning fat as fuel.
But before we move on let’s understand why we are getting these symptoms.
Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)
Since you been using carbs to fuel your body your whole life, therefore, since now you are not eating carbs on a regular basis you can expect your blood sugar to drop and your body will start using its sugar stored.
- Hunger Attacks
- Increase heart rate
These symptoms can be very scary but don’t worry there is a way to avoid it. You can use glucose tablets. When you start feeling like this just pop one in your mouth. And the Symptoms should get better.
This is one of the most common side effects and to me is the worse. and headaches happen because of the chemical imbalance created when you cut out carbs.
Since this is mineral imbalance it can be solved by drinking homemade chicken, beef broth or just grabbing a 1/4 of a teaspoon of salt into a glass of water and drink it up.
Remember to drink a lot of water and increase your salt intake at the beginning to make this go away.
This is one of the most common side effects and its normal. Just think about it for a second. Constipation is the result of dehydration, loss of potassium, magnesium, and salt.
To solve this problem you will need to take vitamin supplements or decrease your dairy intake.
The worst of all symptoms is diarrhea a think, well some may see it as an opportunity to cleanse their body.
But the diarrhea should pass soon as your body gets used to the fat intake. Remember to drink lots of water to prevent dehydration.
Insomnia or Interrupted Sleep Patterns
many people like me experience sleeping problems. Which by the way its a sign that your insulin levels are low and your body is telling you you need FOOD.
Just have a snack before going to bed make sure it contains a good amount of fat and protein.
This is the one and only side effect for which I have not found a solution. Meaning you will have to resist the temptation of eating sweets.
But don’t worry there is light at the end of the tunnel and these symptoms will go away in around 21 days.
The best way to deal with sugar cravings is by keeping yourself busy go for a walk or do something that will take your mind of it.
Breakfast – Veggie Omelet
Lunch – Chicken Lettuce Wrap
Dinner – Instant Pot Salsa Chicken
Breakfast – Bell Pepper Fried Eggs
Lunch – Buffalo Chicken Lettuce Wraps
Dinner – Low Carb Chicken Enchilada Soup
Breakfast – Keto Almond Flour Pancakes
Lunch – Easy and Delicious Egg Salad
Dinner – Easy Sweet and Sour Chicken
Breakfast – 90 Seconds Keto Bread
Lunch – Spicy Keto Thai Lettuce Wrap
Dinner – Balsamic Glazed Chicken Drum Stick
Lunch – Spicy Bacon Frittata
Dinner – Keto Parmesan Chicken and Grits
Breakfast – Keto Cream Cheese Mozzarella Dough Bagel
Lunch – Easy Creamy Tomato Soup
Dinner – Keto Taco Cheese Cups
Breakfast – Vanilla Chia Seed Protein Smoothie
Dinner – Chicken Bacon Crockpot
Breakfast – Bacon and Egg Cups
Lunch – Keto Orange Chicken
Dinner – Meatloaf
Breakfast – Keto French Toast Recipe
Lunch – Turkey BLT Wrap
Dinner – Cauliflower Fried Rice
Breakfast – Keto Breakfast Burrito
Lunch – Keto Quesadilla
Dinner – Cabbage Roll In A Bowl
Breakfast – Corned Beef Hash
Dinner – Cajun Shrimp And Cauliflower Grits
Breakfast – Keto Cinnamon Muffin
Lunch – Instant Pot Salsa Chicken
Dinner – Cauliflower Mac & Cheese
Lunch – Lettuce Wrap Tacos
Dinner – Instant Pot Chicken Zoodle
Breakfast – Keto Cauliflower Pancakes
Lunch – Brocolli Nuggets
Dinner – Keto “Sunday Dinner” Pot Roast
Breakfast – Keto Flax See Muffin
Lunch – Pizza Pocket
Breakfast – Microwave Omelete In a Mug
Dinner – Taco Salad
Breakfast – Caramel Glazed Donuts
Lunch – Shrimp Avocado Salad
Dinner – Keto Big Mac Salad
Breakfast – Bacon and Egg In A Cup
Lunch – Egg Salad Wraps
Breakfast – Ham And Eggs Cups
Lunch – Ham and Pimiento Cheese Wrap
Dinner – Keto Bacon Cheeseburger Soup
Breakfast – Dutch Baby Pancake Muffin
If you made it to the bottom I just want to say thank you this is a long post but believe I gave you all the info you need to start the Keto diet.
Please note that this is just a sample guide if there is something you don’t like substituted for something you love! remember keto is a lifestyle change, not just another diet.
How to make this work? well, the way I do it is I cook every other day and Make enough for leftover that way I don’t feel like I am in the kitchen all day.