By Jennifer Smith, Natural Medicine Practitioner and Certified in Holistic Nutrition
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Now that you have some knowledge about the keto diet, what you can eat, and what guidelines to follow, you need to get started. These tips will help you start the diet in a way that promotes success and helps you transition into a new ketogenic lifestyle.
To start with, remove all of the major temptations in your household. While some people find it easier to make small changes, this leaves room for you to have little cheats here and there, which keep you from ketosis. In order for the keto diet to work properly, you really need to reach ketosis from the very beginning.
This means getting rid of all bread, rice, pasta, and most grains. Go through your fruit and veggies and get rid of any of them that are high in sugar and carbs. Stick with veggies like broccoli, kale, spinach, and cauliflower, as these are keto friendly.
If you are trying to make multiple meals for your family each night, you will never be able to stick with your new way of eating. Not to mention, how successful could you really be when everyone else is eating the same carbbage (Jimmy Moore's word for carbs/garbage) foods and snacks while you are trying not to want them?
In the beginning, it may take some will power until you get the hang of it. After you're fat adapted and feeling great, you won't even want those foods anymore and you'll recognize just how bad they made you feel.
Don't beat yourself up, this is not a battle of wills! This is a lifestyle, not a diet. You should not force it. Just choose the right foods, and make sure to eat plenty of fat!
This brings me to another point. If you're hungry, you need to eat more fats. Maybe have a fatty shake or smoothie, eat a small handful of nuts (easy on the nuts - just a few go a long way) or make some fat bombs. So many people think they need to force themselves not to cave into a craving.
The point is that you won't have cravings if you are consuming enough fat through-out the day. The bonus is that once you are regularly eating enough fats, you could probably skip a meal or even two and not feel ravenous!
Many people who are fat adapted, easily eat on a 16:8 intermittent fast. 16 hour fast and 8 hour eating window. Say from 8pm to noon the next day, while only having a bulletproof coffee during the fast. Some choose to eat only one large meal a day and practice intermittent fasting the rest of the time.
This is not a high protein diet. This is a high fat, moderate protein, low carb diet. Too much protein and your body will be burning protein for fuel, which means your still burning carbs rather than fat. This happens when the carbohydrate reserve in the body is low, the liver will convert excess protein into glucose through a process called gluconeogenesis.
When you are first starting out, it is hard to remember what you can and can’t have. Start by creating a meal plan that includes every single meal and snack you and your family intend to eat for the first week.
Take that meal plan and create a shopping list that is detailed and includes all ingredients you will need. When you go to the supermarket, you should only be purchasing what is on the list, and nothing more. This allows you to stick to the diet, but also to get just what you need for the meals you have laid out.
Two apps that are great for meal planning are the Keto Diet App and Plan To Eat. The KetoDietApp has over 1,300 keto friendly recipes from the app and the blog which is available to view directly in the app. You can schedule any of the recipes and then click a button to add the ingredients to your shopping list.
Then it goes a step further if you're looking to track your macros and weightloss. The KetoDietApp provides macro and calorie recommendations based on your goals. I love their recipes and use them quite frequently when I need something new to add to my rotation.
PlanToEat is another app that allows you to import recipes from any website with a recipe listed. This is what I have personally used for over 6 years. I love how easy it is to plan my meals and it adds your planned meals to your grocery list.
Some other diets might give the option to have a cheat day, which is one day a week where you can eat whatever you want. This might be fine for a typical low-calorie diet, but it does not work well with the keto diet when you are starting out.
You will discover that is harder for your body to recover from a cheat day, even if you didn’t actually gain any weight from it. You are going back and forth between ketosis and not, which can be really hard on your digestive system, so it is best to hold off on the cheat days until you are fat adapted (give yourself at least 4 to 6 weeks to become fully fat adapted).
In the meantime, why not look for cheats within the keto diet. Find a few keto recipes for the sweets and salty cravings you are having. Keep fat bomb snacks available so that you can have one when a craving pops up, or you just need more fat.
Eating out can be a struggle when you are still transitioning to this new lifestyle. While you will learn ways to eat out and still be on the keto diet, you might want to hold off for now. Wait at least a few weeks before you start going out to eat on this diet.
Thanks for reading today! I'm working on a number of articles and ideas I'd like to share with you about intermittent fasting, and carb cycling. I hope you'll bookmark this site and visit again soon!
I have partnered with a keto expert who has literally written the book on her simplistic version of the Keto Diet.
Most authors of keto books are men, and frankly they just don't have a good understanding of how keto affects women's hormone balance. Leanne wrote Fat Fueled and The Keto Beginning to help women tailor the diet to fit their individual needs and balance their hormones.
Here are some resources from Leanne, to get you started losing weight with the Keto Diet, the easy way! These are still my favorite books on the subject and I refer back to them frequently.
Jennifer Smith, NMP, CHN, FBCC , BHC
Jennifer Smith is a Natural Medicine Practitioner, Certified in Holistic Nutrition, Faith-Based Clinical Counselor and Biblical Health Coach. She has completed advanced certificates in Functional Nutrition, Functional Medicine, Natural Health Consultant diploma, Biblical Natural Medicine and Biblical Eating and Clinical Nutrition.
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