Keto Diet For Women: How To Make It Work + Tips To Overcome Side Effects
Far from being a new “fad diet”, the keto diet — a very low carb, high fat diet — has been used by doctors since the 1920’s to treat patients with serious illnesses. In recent years the keto diet has steadily been gaining more attention, due to how it promotes weight loss by forcing the body to burn fat for energy. More than ever before, a wider audience is now considering trying the keto diet, including those interested in benefits beyond weight loss. Examples include a reduced risk for diabetes, increased energy and protection against age-related neurological diseases. (1) One problem with the keto diet, however, is that to date, research studies aimed at investigating its efficacy and safety have involved only men or animals (mainly mice). Some have been skeptical then that the keto diet can work equally well for women. Others question whether it’s necessarily a good idea for women to even try keto given the fact that women’s hormones tend to be more sensitive to most dietary and lifestyle changes. According to certain experts in women’s health — such as Dr. Anna Cabeca, a double board-certified Ob-Gyn and Regenerative and Anti-Aging Medicine expert — following an alkaline ketogenic diet may be one of the most helpful lifestyle changes that both women and men can make. From her experience, “A keto-alkaline diet honors our body’s natural design.” Dr. Cabeca has personally taken care of more than 10,000 women through a combination of her online programs and in-office treatments, seeing firsthand the dramatic results that the keto alkaline diet can yield. Does the Keto Diet Work for Women? The answer is yes! In the years that Dr. Cabeca has been using the keto diet to help treat women, especially those in perimenopause or menopause, she’s har Continue reading >>
Here Are The Keto Flu Symptoms And How To Beat Them
Over the past few weeks, I’ve heard from a few low carbers who had questions about some issues they experienced. They all say that they had rapid weight loss, but some had severe headaches, some had joint pains, one even claimed they had diarrhea. One lady thought that I didn’t know these diets can do this, but alas I was fully prepared. These people were suffering from dreaded keto flu symptoms. Not only was she wrong in assuming I didn’t know about these pains, I’ve actually experienced all of these over the last few years. Some of these are easier to manage than others, but any one of these will send you running to the nearest fast food restaurant. That’s why I wanted to write everything I know about the keto flu and how to get over each of these common symptoms. Update: If you take a look at the comments section, you’ll see that MCT oil is my recommendation for many of the issues people ask about. So, I decided to write a few posts on what it is and why you HAVE to include MCT in your diet. Here’s the first post! Keto Flu Symptoms The format for this post will be where I list each of the common symptoms and I’ll describe it as best as I can. After that, I’ll write everything I know about how to beat the pain. Most of my recommendations come from my own experience while others will be from trusted sources. Also, I’ll continue to update this page as people reply with more symptoms. The Ketosis Headache Often describe as a migraine, the ketosis headache is one of the most painful of the keto flu symptoms – in my opinion. This mostly occurs in the first 24-76 hours of an LC diet. People suffering from this describe the pain as being in the head but hard to pinpoint it to any particular region. The entire outer head feels stuffy and the pain is ofte Continue reading >>
Ten Reasons You Are Not Losing Fat On A Low-carb Diet
“” —Passmore & Swindells, two British dietitians writing in the British Journal of Nutrition in 1963 Whether you agree with the above quote or think it’s hilarious nonsense, there’s no doubt that reduced carb diets are useful for losing body fat. A lot of people find that cutting carbs in favor of a higher protein, higher fat diet is the simplest way to get lean fast. However, people often make mistakes when going low-carb, especially if they are training hard in an effort to accelerate the fat loss process. With these 10 simple tips, you can make going low-carb a lot easier and get better fat loss results. Mistake #1: Not Restricting Carbohydrates Enough Low-carb, high-protein diets are effective for fat loss. This is a scientific fact. But, low-carb is a vague term. Simply cutting the average American man’s carb intake of 310 grams a day in half could be considered low-carb, but if you are overweight and your goal is fat loss, you most likely need to go a lot lower than 155 grams. A review in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests the 50 to 150 g/day range is too high for losing body fat in overweight, sedentary populations. A useful definition of a low-carb fat loss diet is less than 50 grams of carbs a day, which will lead to the production of ketones. When the body is producing ketones it is no longer relying on glucose (sugar from carbs) for its fuel source, which is a state that provides significant metabolic benefits and easier fat loss. Fix It: For best results, get those 50 grams of carbs from vegetables and select fruits, such as berries, or other low-carb fruit. Eliminate all grains—whole and processed. Mistake #2: You are Lean, Active & Restricting Carbs Too Much The AJCN definition of a low-carb diet as less than 50 grams a day w Continue reading >>
Carb Controversy: Why Low-carb Diets Have Got It All Wrong.
Ask almost anyone what they need to do to lose a few pounds, and they’ll probably say: “Cut back on the carbs.” As a nutrition coach, I’ve heard it hundreds of times. While the low carb movement has waxed and waned in popularity since the Atkins revival of the late 90s and early 2000s, most folks now assume that carbohydrates are inherently fattening. Health-conscious diners order bunless hamburgers, skip the baked potato side dish, and send the bread basket back to the kitchen. (Or don’t, and feel guilty about it.) In the past few years, I’ll bet you’ve heard (or thought) at least one of the following: Carbs spike your blood sugar and insulin, which slathers on the body fat. Carbs, especially sugar and grains, cause inflammation. Carbs are not an essential part of the diet like fat and protein. Seems simple and logical. Which is the problem. These simplistic statements about “good foods” and “bad foods” ignore biological complexity and the bigger picture. Let’s look closer. Do carbs increase insulin levels? Yes, they do. Does increased insulin after meals lead to fat gain? No. (Insulin’s actually a satiety hormone — in other words, it makes you feel full — so the idea that on its own it leads to fat gain doesn’t make sense.) Are carbs really inflammatory? That depends. Are we talking about processed corn syrup? Probably. But if we’re talking about whole grains, not really. Are carbs less important than protein, fat, and the many micronutrients that contribute to our health? Well, if you’re talking about processed carbs, the answer is a resounding yes. But if you’re talking about whole, minimally processed carbs, that’s a different story. Can a low-carb diet work to help people lose weight? Of course it can. Is it because it is lo Continue reading >>
Ketosis Symptoms & Low Carb Flu Explained
What does Ketosis mean exactly, and what are Ketosis symptoms? There are a lot of questions about the Low Carb Flu, also known as “Induction Flu” (based on the Atkins Induction Phase). If you’ve just started eating low carb and you feel miserable, you’re experiencing the low carb flu. Ketosis symptoms include: Headaches, bad breath or a metallic taste in your mouth, irritability (like PMS on steroids! lol), leg cramps, insomnia, nausea, etc. It basically feels like you’ve been hit with a nasty flu. Symptoms vary from person to person. The good news is, it means you’re doing it right! The even better news is… it only lasts a few days. What Is Ketosis? It is a state in which your body burns fat for energy instead of carbs/sugar. A keto state means you are fueling your body on healthy fats instead of carbohydrates. So that saying that “You need carbs for energy!” is untrue. But you DO need either carbohydrates OR healthy fats for energy, which is why you can’t (or shouldn’t) eat “low carb, low fat”. See Low Carb, High Fat Diet Explained Your body and your brain actually operate much better on healthy fats. A ketogenic diet is known to reduce seizures, lower blood pressure and cholesterol, control diabetes and chronic pain issues (fibromyalgia, arthritis, etc) and remedy many other common health issues. The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, adequate-protein, low-carbohydrate diet. The diet forces the body to burn fats rather than carbohydrates. Normally, the carbohydrates contained in food are converted into glucose, which is then transported around the body and is particularly important in fuelling brain function. However, if there is very little carbohydrate in the diet, the liver converts fat into fatty acids and ketone bodies. The ketone bodies pas Continue reading >>
Other people report the same thing occasionally on forums. The standard medical textbook on clinical use of ketogenic diets doesn't mention it, which suggests that it's not very common. There doesn't seem to be a single mention of this in the biomedical literature, which also suggests that it's not very common. But it does happen. You're not the only one. It's possible that you were close to the threshhold for night sweats for other reasons before you began your ketogenic diet and ketosis nudged you over. If you are taking any medications, you might want to consider the possibility that they are interacting with ketones in your blood. Two things occur to me which might help and can't hurt. First, make sure you're getting adequate amounts of all micronutrients. You can help make this happen by including certain foods (like liver) in your diet but the only practical way to accomplish it completely is with supplements. Perfect Health Diet by Paul and Shou-Ching Jaminet contains excellent advice about micronutrients. Second, whenever you experience unpleasant symptoms from ketosis, you can reduce or eliminate symptoms within a few minutes by eating a tiny amount of sugar. This is what people on medical ketogenic diets do. It's a way of fine tuning the degree of ketosis. Children on medical ketogenic diets are usually told to drink 30 ml of orange juice for this purpose. That's about 2.5 grams of sugar. I eat a stalk of celery instead. Believe it or not, the tiny amount of sugar in a stalk of celery (about 1.5 g) is enough to affect me noticeably within about 20 minutes. If it doesn't work, I eat another stalk. I'm on a medical ketogenic diet so my blood ketone levels are probably higher than yours and I may be more sensitive to sugar than you. Therefore you may need more su Continue reading >>
5 Common Keto Challenges—and How To Overcome Them
The transition from a high-carb diet to one that’s built around healthy fats can trigger some side effects. Here’s how to dissipate them. Unsplash/Eduardo Roda-Lopes The transition from a high-carb diet to one that’s built around healthy fats can trigger some side effects. Here’s how to dissipate them. Unsplash/Eduardo Roda-Lopes In the age of the “obesity epidemic,” more research than ever is focused on determining safe, effective, and long-lasting ways to help prevent or reverse unhealthy weight gain. And studies have found that one possible solution is following a very-low carbohydrate diet called the ketogenic diet. The keto diet drastically reduces the body’s supply of glucose—which is typically obtained from eating carbohydrate-heavy foods like grains and sugar—instead forcing the body to use fat for energy. That may sound similar to other low-carb diets, but there is one key keto distinction: Instead of a focus on lots of protein, the keto diet emphasizes healthy fats, mostly from keto-approved foods like coconut or olive oil, butter, meat, avocado, and eggs. For this reason, the keto diet doesn’t just help with weight loss. It’s also been shown to reduce the risk for diabetes or heart disease, protect against certain neurological disorders, and improve cognitive function. But that doesn’t mean that adopting the keto diet will be all smooth sailing, either. For many, the transition from a high-carb diet to one that’s built around healthy fats and plenty of vegetables can trigger some side effects. If you’re considering adopting the keto diet to help improve your overall health, be advised that you may run into one or more of the following challenges. The good news, however, is that most of these will very likely dissipate within severa Continue reading >>
What Is A Keto Vegan/plant-based Diet?
Disclaimer: I am not a Dr. nor do I play one on the internet. Always consult with your doctor before experimenting with your diet (seriously, see a functional medicine Dr. and get data from blood tests, urine tests, etc.). Please feel free to comment if you’re aware of anything that should be updated; I always appreciate knowing the science and I’ll update the content promptly. My goal is to help readers get more scientifically educated and improve their health and their lives with as much joy as possible. The purpose of this blog is to educate you on a Keto Vegan Plant-Based Diet. What Is Ketosis? Definition: “Ketogenesis” means “generating ketones,” which your body does naturally to generate energy from fat when carbohydrate sources are sufficiently low (e.g., after intense exercise, long periods of fasting, etc.). “Ketogenic diets” are thus a way of switching your body over into a fat-burning state. The Ketogenic or KETO diet is gaining popularity. Many people wonder if it is possible to adopt a Keto Vegan Plant-Based Diet. I’m here to tell you YES! It is! What Is A Ketogenic (KETO) Diet? When we increase our healthy fats and lower our carbohydrates (grains, most fruit, sweeteners, and starchy vegetables) and add in a moderate amount of protein (15 grams per meal), the human brain becomes more efficient. We have more mental cognition, clarity, we lose weight, and have a more balanced energy level. I’ve been practicing a Keto Vegan Plant-Based Diet without knowing it for 20 years. I started eating this way when I found out I had systemic candida. I was then introduced into the world of cleansing. My candida remedy was to eliminate most carbohydrates and adopt a vegan, high fat, low carb diet. It was successful! I have experimented with this way of Continue reading >>
More Than You Ever Wanted To Know About Protein & Gluconeogenesis
My dear readers, the website/blog update has run into some snags. Rather than continuing to keep you waiting, though, I’m going to publish new posts and I’ll worry about transitioning them over later on. And since it’s been a few months since I last posted anything of substance, I’ve decided to drop this enormous, enormous post on you to make up for that lost time—and it might take you equally long to read it. Sorry about that, but hey, I haven’t written anything meaningful since May, so, depending on your point of view, this post is either a gift or a punishment. As I’ve said in the past, if you’re an insomniac or a cubicle dweller with lots of time to kill, you’re welcome. (The rest of you, go get yourself a cup of coffee or tea, come back, and get comfy.) I’ve been meaning to write this post for over a year, but it’s such a big topic and so much can go wrong that the thought of tackling it all was enough to make me not write it. But it’s gotten to the point that I’m tired enough of seeing the same questions asked and the same myths propagated over and over on various keto and low carb forums that I’ve decided this needs to be done, no matter how painful I might find it. Because seeing nonsense and fearmongering regarding the role of protein in low carb or ketogenic diets is even more painful. So if finally managing to organize my thoughts into some kind of coherent prose means I never have to read the phrase, “too much protein turns into sugar” ever again, it will be worth it. So that’s what’s on tap today, kids: Gluconeogenesis. That’s right, friends, it’s time to do some myth-busting surrounding the whacked-out notion that protein—lean protein, in particular (like a skinless chicken breast, or tuna canned in water)—is the Continue reading >>
Ketogenic Diet Benefits For Weight Loss, Fighting Disease & More
Unlike many fad diets that come and go with very limited rates of long-term success, the ketogenic diet (or keto diet) has been practiced for more than nine decades (since the 1920s) and is based upon a solid understanding of physiology and nutrition science. Rather than relying on counting calories, limiting portion sizes, resorting to extreme exercise or requiring lots of willpower (even in the face of drastically low energy levels), the ketogenic diet takes an entirely different approach to weight loss and health improvement. It works because it changes the very “fuel source” that the body uses to stay energized — namely, from burning glucose (or sugar) for energy to dietary fat and, critically, your own body fat after the stage of “ketosis” is reached. Meanwhile, beyond its outstanding potential to help people lose weight and burn off fat stores, research shows that the ketogenic diet helps to fight serious diseases, including cancer and Alzheimer’s. Table of Contents 1. What Is the Keto Diet? What Is Ketosis? How to Get Into Ketosis What Are the Stages of Ketosis? Does the Keto Diet Work for Women? 2. Benefits of the Ketogenic Diet 3. What Is the Ketogenic Diet Plan? 5. Keto Side Effects and the Keto Flu What Is the Keto Diet? The ketogenic diet is a very low-carb diet plan that was originally designed in the 1920s for patients with epilepsy by researchers working at Johns Hopkins Medical Center. (1) Researchers found that fasting — avoiding consumption of all foods for a brief period of time, including those that provide carbohydrates — helped reduce the amount of seizures patients suffered, in addition to having other positive effects on body fat, blood sugar, cholesterol and hunger levels. (4) Unfortunately, long-term fasting is not a feasible op Continue reading >>
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Which High-protein Diet Is Best: Atkins, Dukan, Or Ketogenic?
We ranked them for you. If you’ve been on the lookout for a new way to lose weight, you’ve probably noticed that low-carb, high-protein diets—like Atkins, the ketogenic diet, and the Dukan diet—have become kind of a big deal. Not only did all three make the cut on Google’s annual list of most searched diets, but two (Atkins and Dukan) are also on the 2016 US News & World Report’s roundup of best weight-loss diets. Each of these diets follow the same basic premise: limiting carbs means the body turns to stored fat for fuel. But is one of these plans more likely to lead to kilogram-shedding success? We caught up with Dr. Edwina Clark, head of nutrition and wellness at Yummly, to find out how these three diets compare. The Ketogenic Diet How it works “The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, moderate protein, low-carb diet,” says Clark. Up to 75 percent of your daily kilojoules come from fat, 5 to 10 percent from carbs, and the rest from protein. By severely limiting carbs to 50 grams or less, this diet forces your bod to burn fat for energy, a process known as ketosis. Unlike the Atkins and Dukan diets, the keto plan doesn’t work in phases. Instead, you sustain the low-carb, high-fat, high-protein eating ratios until you reach your goal weight. There is no maintenance plan once you reach your goal. Want to kickstart your weight-loss journey for 2017? Get our Lean Body Blitz 12-week meal and fitness plan to turbo-charge your slim-down! Unsurprisingly, limiting your carb intake this much means missing out on quite a few (delish) foods, including legumes, root vegetables, and most fruits. Starchy veggies, such as squash and sweet potatoes, are also off the table, along with refined carbs. Thanks to carb counting and food restrictions, meal prepping is paramount to Continue reading >>
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What We’ve Learned About Smoked Pork Butt (pork Shoulder)
*UPDATE* We now have a video for this recipe! Scroll down to the bottom to view. Pork butt (also known as pork shoulder, Boston butt, and Boston Roast) was one of the very first things we cooked when we bought our first smoker several years ago. It was and still remains one of our very favorites to cook, despite the intense commitment to time (not to mention $$$) it takes to prep and cook the darn thing. Surprisingly, the only time we’ve actually shared a recipe for smoked pork butt was ages ago. We’ve learned a lot since then! A LOT. Since that first post we’ve probably cooked over 200 different pork butts (for our own personal consumption as well as a number of event’s we’ve cooked at for Ember and Vine). So today we thought we’d share some of the biggest lessons we’ve learned in the years since our first pork butt. Our key was experimentation, and that is what we want to encourage here. So now I’m handing it over to Sean, since he’s the most desperaly passionate about this cut of meat…. So, Sean, take it away. By Sean Martin There are a few cuts of meat that tend to challenge any pitmaster. Brisket certainly is one, but the other I hear a lot about is pork shoulder, or pork butt. Over the years, I have cut my teeth on many hundreds, if not thousands of pounds of this meat and I have to tell you that if you spend some time understanding the process, you can nail it on your very first try. Here are a few things we have learned when cooking a pork shoulder. With any cut of meat, you have to understand where it comes from. In technology speak, it’s often “garbage in, garbage out”. The same applies to barbecue. And with pork this is especially the case. Let me explain. With beef, it is generally accepted that marbling is a key to flavor. So you h Continue reading >>
What Is The Keto Flu Or Low Carb Flu And What To Do About It?
Keto flu symptoms, mitigation and getting over excess carbohydrates Any major dietary or lifestyle change has the potential to cause discomfort or lets face it, even mess you up for a bit. This is sometimes referred to as a ‘flu’. It’s the most common time during which people will quit their dietary or lifestyle shift as many simply feel they are unable to function without significant carbohydrates and snacking throughout day. Here we’ll discuss the major downside to starting a ketogenic diet or a low carb one, and how to minimize the discomfort often accompanying this adaptation period. Like most people you’ve probably spent 20 – 60 years feeding your body a significant amount of carbohydrates and much of them from poorly chosen overly processed sources. Your cells, organs, central nervous system and brain have all adapted to it through hormonal and metabolic responses normally running in the background. Switching fuel sources, like eating less carbs and more fat, is likely to throw your body and brain for a loop. To be clear, the “keto flu” label is a bit of a misnomer. It’s more akin to carbohydrate withdrawal symptoms resulting from a shifting hormonal states and imbalanced electrolyte adjustments that are along for the ride. Regardless, this buzz term is in the general consciousness now so we might as well keep using it for now. Before diving into the details, keep in mind that the following four books should teach you nearly everything you need to know about low carb and ketogenic diets, including how to handle the keto flu. The rest of the relevant science is dispersed amongst hundreds if not thousands of papers only a search away on PubMed. If you want to ask questions about it or be part of our community please visit Ask BreakNutrition. Sympto Continue reading >>
Crohn's Disease Successfully Treated With The Paleolithic Ketogenic Diet
Crohn's disease, an inflammatory disease of the bowel, is regarded as having no cure . Standard treatment which involves steroids, immunosuppressants and biological therapy is aimed at reducing symptoms . Periods of flares and remissions typically alternate, however, the overall course of the disease is progressive. A set of ecological evidence, including a discrepancy between westernized and non-westernized countries in the occurrence of the disease, raises the possibility of lifestyle and/or dietary factors in the etiology of the disease . There have been several attempts to use a dietary intervention in Crohn's disease such as the specific carbohydrate diet  and the anti-inflammatory diet  as well as elimination-reintroduction diets  . Although clinical improvements and reduction of medicines have been reported being associated with these diets we are not aware of any diet inducing complete remission and long-term freedom of medicines at the same time. The authors of the present report are using a diet referred to as the paleolithic ketogenic diet in the treatment of chronic conditions. So far we have published cases of successful treatment of diabetes type 1   and type 2 , epilepsy   as well as other conditions . Diagnosis The 14-year-old boy presented with fatigue, low grade fever, iron deficiency anemia, lower abdominal tenderness and perianal dermatitis. He was of short stature for his age. On 30 September 2013 upper and lower endoscopy was performed. The latter showed ulcerative lesion in the terminal ileum. Biopsy was taken from multiple sites and histopathology showed severe inflammation of the terminal ileum and the Bauhin's valve. Signs of mild-to-moderate degree aspecific inflammation were seen in the colon. On laborato Continue reading >>
Ammonia Smell During Exercise On Ketogenic Diet – Q&a
Question: My question relates to the pungent smell of ammonia in my sweat during a hard work out, seems to start about 45 minutes in and gets stronger from then. This started very soon after the diet. I have recently started a high protein slow carb diet,am drinking between 3 and 4 litres of water a day (currently 180lbs with 21% body fat)have plenty of energy and feel alert and well. From your work I gather this could be the result of ketosis and burning protein and fat for energy? Two questions please: 1. Is this OK? 2. Is there anyway to eliminate the smell? Answer: This is a fairly common report on very low-carbohydrate/ketogenic diet (defined, once again, as any diet containing less than 100 grams of carbohydrate per day), a report of a fairly strong ammonia smell in the sweat during exercise. As I discuss in detail in my first book The Ketogenic Diet this ammonia is produced due to the ultimate breakdown of ATP to ADP to AMP and ammonia. This appears to occur more readily when muscle glycogen is depleted (as occurs with the combination of of a very low-carbohydrate intake along with training) and may be part of the increased protein requirements that have been known to occur with endurance training (this is discussed in detail in The Protein Book). I would mention that it appears that this ‘protein breakdown’ is not actually coming from the breakdown of skeletal muscle itself; rather it’s from the breakdown of BCAA (branched-chain amino acids) within the free amino acid pool. So is this ok? So long as dietary protein intake is sufficient, I don’t see this as being any real problem. The effect is slight in terms of the absolute amount of protein being broken down (in terms of grams) and so long as protein intake is sufficient, there shouldn’t be any detri Continue reading >>