Ketogenics: How to Lose 30 Pounds in a Month(ish) Being Lazy & Full
Really. It's a thing.
I'm an eater. Like really. I don't know about you, but I like to eat food. There are four kinds of food I don't like: raw onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, and sea urchin. Other than that? I will get down to the point of making myself sick if it's a food I genuinely like. Unfortunately, I also really like clothes and occasionally if my cute stuff doesn't fit so well, I have to do something to get it under control.
Once upon a time, I was 21. At 21 I stopped drinking diet coke for a week and lost 15 pounds (almost true story). Now? I'm 27 for the fourth time and gain weight walking by the bakery in a grocery store. Really. Which is why I'm so excited to share my amazing, attainable, easy, satisfying diet plan with you. A diet plan that helped me lose thirty pounds, and counting!
How Does it Work?
I had to give you a little introduction there because I didn't want to scare you off. Are you ready? Do you really want to know what Ketogenics is? Alright, I'll tell you.
It's pretty much low-carb. But there's more.
Before you close this page because you think you're incapable of living without bread or pasta, let me let you in on a little secret: You are not incapable of living without bread or pasta, and in this day and age you don't have to!
Really. 2017 is a fabulous year to live and be almost carb-free. There are low-carb breads, pastas, tortillas, and cookies. I mean, imagine doing this back in the '90s when Atkins was in it's prime? No comparison! The best part? You can pretty much eat all day, not work out, and still drop a ton of weight. Hold on a second there sparky, there's a catch.
Step 1: Get Commited
I have had so many friends in the past year see my amazing results, and commit themselves to keto. "I'm starting Monday!" They say. They text me pictures of their meals, they ask for my substitutions... and yet, time and time again they fail. Why? Mostly because they haven't taken the time to properly educate themselves on how this actually works. People think that if they eat two out of their three meals a day low carb, they're golden. Or if they do low carb for a week and have a cheat day, they're ok. Unfortunately it doesn't work like that.
The word "ketogenics" comes from the word "ketosis." Now, I'm not going to get all doctored up on you, but basically carbohydrates are a form of energy. When you consume a carbohydrate, your body needs to burn it off or it turns into fat (just like calories). Get it? Well, when your body is in a ketosis state, it is consuming so few carbs that it's getting it's energy from fat. Like, the fat in your butt and belly. In essence, your body is eating itself. Sounds good right? Of course. Now, how to get into ketosis? Read on.
Step 2: Get Into Ketosis
The only real purchase this lifestyle change will have (other than food) is your keto monitor. Some really classy people opt for blood monitors which are super accurate, but I go for the cheaper . From what I gather (and what works for me), as long as it is some shade of purple, you're in ketosis. But if you're the kind of person that folds their underwear, by all means pick up the machine. ketone urine strips
Getting into ketosis can take anywhere from 4-10 days. Basically you're going to consume under 25 net grams of carbohydrates, and when you're mouth starts tasting like a penny you're good to go. Once in ketosis, you're body is now eating its fat, causing your weight loss. Stay under that 25 mark, and your body will continue to eat its fat causing an average of up to 30 pounds lost in the first month! Obviously if you're a smaller person this number will be smaller, and after the first month the weight loss will slow down. After your first month you can expect to be losing 1-2 pounds a week on average, and you can be doing this while eating a package of bacon a day! No, really. I sometimes eat a package of bacon a day.
Now that you understand what ketosis is (a little bit, anyway.) you can understand why this diet will not work if you cheat. You're literally just cheating yourself, and if you eat too many carbs you will get kicked out of ketosis and have to start over again, which will set you back another week or so. Just suck it up and either do it or don't.
Step 3: Know What You're Eating
Before I researched this diet, I used to try low carb here and there. Holy crap, I now know why it never worked before; I had no idea what a net carb is! In fact, I'm pretty sure I didn't know what carbohydrates were in general... but that's besides the point. Finding your netcarb is pretty simple, it's just math.
Look at the label. Take the carbohydrates, minus the fiber, add the sugar, and minus the sugar alcohols. It sounds complicated, but it will become second nature. This comes in handy, because foods like avocados might seem like they have high carbohydrates, but they also are high in fiber. So an avocado might have 12 grams of carbs, but it has 10 grams of fiber and 1 gram of sugar. 12-10+1= 3. You can have like 8 in a day! woohoo for guac! Stick with this and you'll be in ketosis before you know it.
Sugar alcohols and fiber cancel out carbs. Why? Because science, duh.
Give it a try!
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Step 4: Eat!
So I stay under 25-30 carbs a day. I also am not a big fan of counting, so here's my secret: I don't. Occasionally if I've been drinking a few low-carb beers (yes, you an drink booze!) I may go and double check that I didn't eat anything crazy, but with my diet change I just stick to foods I consider ketosis-safe, and as long as I eat those I'm fine. Why? When your body is in ketosis you really don't have as much of an appetite, and you're probably not going to get the urge to munch just because your bored. In essence, these are the foods I can eat as much of I want of in an average day:
- Meat & seafood (regular old meat, pretty much any kind. If it was alive you can eat it.) Keep in mind that most seasonings are ok, but watch out for sauces that can have sugar!
- Cheese (all the cheese. mmm.)
- leafy veggies
- Butter/coconut oil (for cooking)
- Pork Rinds
- Almond milk
- Most seasonings
- Most spray in a can whipped toppings (I know, weird right?)
- Most sugar free condiments (Ranch, mayo, mustard, most hot sauces. Look at the labels... BBQ sauce and ketchup are big no no's as they are high in sugar.)
- Hard alcohol with zero carb mixers (not recommended until you are actually in ketosis)
The above is a list of foods you can literally gorge yourself on. However, that's not all you can eat! As long as you check the label you can have at least one serving of the following items a day,. Once you familiarize yourself with the net carbs of each of these, you will more than likely not have to count carbs at all! You will just know (like me) to limit your intake!
- Low carb ice cream (think Halo Top)
- Atkins frozen meals and treats (some people are sensitive to the artificial sweeteners in these, so if you have an iffy stomach don't go crazy here!)
- Most fruit
- low carb tortillas
- Almonds/peanuts/peanut butter/almond butter
- Protein drinks (Like muscle milk)
- Most Veggies (Spaghetti squash and cauliflower are amazing substitutions, but check out the nutrition content! They still have carbs, so don't go insane on them.)
- Most all natural dark chocolate bars (find your net carbs... don't eat the whole thing!)
- Low carb beers like Michelob Ultra and dry wines
Obviously this is not everything, however this is a pretty good rundown of what my food intake is. Guidelines if you will.
Step 5: Stay in Ketosis and Watch the Pounds Disappear
So, yeah. Atkins wrote a whole book on this and I just summed it up in a few paragraphs, but this is about it. Remember, no one is perfect and it's completely normal to get kicked out of ketosis occasionally by accident! (one time a stupid bartender decided to pour me Jack & Cokes all night instead of Jack & Diets. Ever look like a crazy person yelling at someone about ketosis in a bar? Me neither.) If you screw up, just start again. No big deal. Sticking with this way of eating will increase your overall life quality, from your energy to your relationship with food. Good luck, and don't give up!