Or, How I Almost Missed Ketosis.
The low carb, low fat lifestyle works for a while. But it’s not pleasant. Also, in my VAST experience, the weight loss doesn’t stay gone. And you’re generally an unpleasant person…hungry, hormonally bent, perpetually counting calories, drawn and sad and always making up for a ‘bad’ day of eating.
Adding fat and feeding that furnace is the game changer. I can remember the first time someone said to me that my diet should be 60-70% healthy fats. I just about had a fit. After years of low carb/low fat and significant weight loss (read: being hungry all the time), how could I accept adding bacon?? Why would I eat eggs and sausage instead of oatmeal in the morning?? Would the weight go back on?? What would I do with all that happiness??
Ketosis is a natural state of energy/fuel for your body. Your body, your brain, your cells…WANT to burn FAT.
The benefits of ketogenic eating are many. Better fat loss, better satiety, better energy, better functioning brains, better muscle preservation, better sleep, clearer skin…there’s more, but these are pretty good places to start!
Why don’t we eat ketogenic now?
We have grown up in a world that has suggested that we eat like the cows that we fatten…high carbohydrates, grains, low fat. Plus some protein for our muscles. Funny, the same diet that efficiently fattens animals for slaughter and consumption is the same diet recommended by our food guides.
Before we dive into the science of ketogenics, let’s take a brief look at how we became one of the most obese continents in the world!
Years ago, science took a bit of a turn around food and health, and based on some later discovered faulty logic regarding cholesterol, made sweeping recommendations about the food we should be eating in North America. The platform of our eating became heavy amounts of carbs (grain, flour, corn, rice), fruits and vegetables, and furthest up the pyramid, fats. Like this:
The recommendation was mostly carbs (grains, bread, cereal, starchy vegetables, fruits, milk, yogurt, cheese), meat and very little fats, oils and sweets. If you’re interested to know more about how we got here, take a look at Nina Teicholz’s book, The Big Fat Surprise, which recently had big support through the British Medical Journal for investigative reporting. (http://thebigfatsurprise.com/press-release-bmj-decision-not-retract/)
Not surprisingly, over the same period, obesity and obesity related diseases have grown, and diet related diseases have flourished.(http://stateofobesity.org/obesity-rates-trends-overview/)
Aren’t carbs my main fuel source? Plus, I like doughnuts!
Your body essentially recognizes two distinct fuel sources. Fat and Glucose (or glucogenisis from protein), in some form. When your body encounters glucose, there is a spike in insulin from your pancreas to contend with the increase in glucose in your body. A resultant signal is sent to the cells to burn the glucose and store fat for when you need it.
When there is a continual overload of glucose entering the system, your body becomes insulin resistant, your adrenals go into overload, cell receptors stop working, your hormones and signalling systems tell your body to store fat…and lots of it. Plus, you have the residual benefit of being HANGRY all the time! The roller coaster of “feed me now “is never ending. And all the time, you are building your fat stores for that day when there is no more glucose. But in our society, that day never arrives.
On the other hand, HEALTHY FATS💕:
- Do not require insulin response and the cycle never starts.
- Fat is a satiating food, telling your body you are full and satisfied, thereby needing less volume.
- Fat heals your hormones and brain, causing them to work the right way. (Did you know that your brain is 60% fat?? When you starve it of fat, it becomes like that muffin left sitting on the counter in the company kitchen for days…cracked and dry!)
- For women in particular, fat is a necessary food because of the significant role hormones play in our lives.
When you limit the amount of carbs going into your body and increase the amount of fat, your body will go into nutritional ketosis.
Web MD: “Ketosis is a normal metabolic process, something your body does to keep working. When it doesn’t have enough carbohydrates from food for your cells to burn for energy, it burns fat instead. As part of this process, it makes ketones.”
Ketones fuel the brain and allow fat to be used for energy.
We are born in ketosis, go into it overnight when we fast while we are sleeping. It is a healthy natural process of the body that feeds and protects the brain.
Can’t I just go into ketosis by cutting carbs?
Here’s the thing. Going low carb and starving your body of glucose is really only one side of the equation. You are still riding the roller coaster of insulin spikes and starvation of the brain. You must have fat to normalize your body, your hormones, help you feel full. To help you burn fat.
Won’t I gain weight by eating fat??
And now for the good news. You lose weight by eating fat. By healing your metabolism, by burning fat as you main fuel source, by feeling satiated and full. I’m a great example of this. Down 140+ lbs going into adding fat to my diet and waiting for the weight to start to climb. But no! I am down another 20lbs and counting, effortlessly and not on a diet.
The weight doesn’t go back on. I feel full, satisfied eating this way and am continuing to lose weight, but now I’m losing fat and not actively dieting. I am getting in touch with eating when I’m hungry and fasting when I am not.
Even better, I am off all supplements (except Keto OS, of course), including my menopause hormone replacement drugs. My brain fog is lifting, I actually remember my grocery list now! I feel that my hormones are starting to heal themselves, no more hot flashes! No more inflammation in my knees, I’m running again!
How do I do it?
It is simple. Not easy all the time in our carbohydrate driven world, where we regularly run into cakes, bagels, grain based meals, sugary lattes, social pressure. But simplicity really is the key.
Stop eating processed food, as much as possible. If it’s not real, if it has a list of 20 ingredients..don’t eat it. Or limit it.
No sugar. I don’t always adhere to this…read my previous post about my addiction(Hello. My name is Melanie. I am a sugar addict.)…but I aspire to it every single day.
Make the majority of your food healthy fats and the minority carbohydrates. And make your carbs healthy vegetables, for the most part.
Get some help. I use Prüvit Keto OS to help me get circulating ketones into my body, to help me overcome my sugar addiction and to help me smooth over my carb bumps. I’ve done it alone and I’ve done it with help. Help is easier. For more info on that, shoot me a note, or check it out: mybestlifenow.experienceketo.com/
And celebrate. Celebrate how great you feel. Celebrate how you are increasing your longevity and quality of life. Celebrate making yourself and the people around you healthy.