Keto is a diet that has grown in popularity in recent years and doesn’t look like it’s going away anytime soon. I think the ketogenic diet is an amazing short term therapeutic diet for those with uncontrolled seizures, neurological issues like MS and neuropathy, and those with Type 1 Diabetes.
What gets me is all the severely bad, and outright harmful, advice that is out there. For example:
- Eating nothing but eggs for several days to get into ketosis
- Depending on a protein powder to force your body into ketosis quickly
- Dirty keto, which is keto but full of ultra-processed junk food and sweets
- A basically carnivore diet of meat, bacon, heavy cream, cheese and little of anything else
These are just a few of the things I’ve seen. When I read or hear poor advice like this I become a mix of anger at the people giving it and sadness for the people following it. When keto first became popular my practice became full of men and women suffering from
- permanent thyroid dysfunction
- hair loss so severe women were getting bald patches
- debilitating chronic fatigue
- major GI issues
- muscle aches and pain
- severe nutritional deficiencies
- and more
This got me talking to my circle of doctors and doing hours of research weekly to figure out what was going on, what could be reversed, what to focus on in the short term to help my clients start feeling better quickly, and give them a strategy to reach their health goals in a realistic manner they can follow long-term with minimal effort and maximum nutrition.
But what about those who truly need to go keto for a time?
Keto is a truly restorative and therapeutic diet for some. When you go on a diet you want to make sure you’re doing it correctly and gaining the maximum benefit from it. That leads to the question, what is the right way to go keto? Here’s how:
First, follow the macro ratios correctly.
That means 75% of your calories come from healthy fats, 20% from protein, and 5% from carbohydrates. This is how you reach ketosis, create ketones, and reap the benefits of this diet. Ketones help repair your nervous system. No special drink or magic food will get you there and keep you there in a healthy way. You have to put in the work.
Secondly, you need vegetables. A lot of them.
You must include a substantial amount of low carb vegetables with every meal and snack. You NEED vegetables in your days for fiber, antioxidants, their anti-inflammatory components, and the many vitamins and minerals they provide. Without them, your health will suffer greatly.
Third, it needs to be realistic.
Eating the same thing every day isn’t realistic. It gets boring fast. Eating “keto” muffins and snack foods every day, while delicious, isn’t healthy or truly sustainable either. Eating nothing but meat and dairy, again, while delicious, isn’t realistic.
You need to be eating a variety of foods with a variety of flavors to enjoy your meals and benefit the most from your diet. Food is a soul experience and that means it tastes good and it’s fun to eat with others. Meals need to be simple to shop for, make, and eat. Then as you are able to add more foods back into your diet you have a solid foundation in place so you can continue to experience vibrant health once you are off the diet. Putting It All Together
It is a lot of work to put together a meal plan for the first time following all these parameters. It took me a good 8 hours to put together the ones in my Ketogenic Meal Plan Program because I was not only putting the recipes together, I was ensuring that every single day the proper ratios for ketosis were established so my clients would have less to think about. Then once the meal plans were done, I put together the shopping list, my shopping shortcuts list, cooking tips, meal prep guide, plus a 3 month email coaching series that is delivered to your inbox over the course of 3 months with helpful tips, tricks, information, and healthy living tips to feel your absolute best. Then of course, a guide on how to transition off of keto in a healthy way.
I always want the people who purchase my programs to be set up for short term and long term success. You can learn more about this meal plan here.