With no restaurant visits planned, no social drinking sessions in the diary or any excitement on the horizon, I thought why not try a diet? To fill up a couple of months of nothing, I decided to attempt the Keto diet.
The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carb diet
To put it simply, the ketogenic diet is a high-fat, low-carb (as in really low-carb) diet. The intense removal of carbohydrates puts your body into a state of ketosis. Your body starts to become super-efficient at burning fat for energy, rather than finding energy from carbs. Besides being well-known for weight loss, research from WebMD says that it can help prevent heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
The idea is for your daily intake to comprise of just 5% carbs and a whopping 70% fat
Now, in order to get into ketosis, I had to start logging my food. This is really tedious when you start out, because everything you eat has to be noted down to track its contents. The idea is for your daily intake to comprise of just 5% carbs and a whopping 70% fat. The remaining 25% should come from protein.
As I started this journey, it became evident that carbohydrates were hidden in many foods that are regarded as healthy, such as: shop-bought ‘healthy snacks,’ nuts and a lot of fruit and vegetables. To make the whole process harder, I was the only member of my family embarking on this crazy new diet, and so I suddenly had to plan all my meals by myself. That being said, it was exciting to discover the internet actually had tonnes of keto alternatives, so I didn’t feel so alone.
With a love of baking and a lot of lockdown time on my hands, I was determined to find some low carb treats. Every recipe included almond or coconut flour, erythritol, psyllium husk and xanthum gum (gluten-free chefs will know this one). The only thing I recognised on the list were eggs. Where on earth was I meant to source these?! Had I not been stuck at home and now an expert in online shopping, I think I would have given up right there. Instead I persisted, obtaining everything from a WholeFoods website (it was legit, I checked). I have to warn you, I balked a little at the cost- things definitely add up when you’re restocking your entire dry-goods cupboard.
I had a lot of fun making new things and even surprised my family with the success of some of the alternatives. The best foods I ate on my keto diet were:
20 minute bread
Avocado and scrambled egg on toast
Broccoli and cauliflower cheese
A couple of things to take away from this article is that a Keto diet is not a long-term solution, and if it starts making you view food negatively or affects social gatherings, you should bring the diet to an end. Secondly, one of the most important things you need to be wary of throughout this diet is making sure that you are still getting a good amount of fibre, which can be easily overlooked with the reduced number of carbs. Unfortunately, I learnt that the hard way!
- Weight loss definitely occurs in the first few weeks
- You don’t feel the need to snack through the day
- You can find some sort of alternative to your fave foods
- It is very restrictive
- You have to keep track of foods so you stay in ketosis
- It is expensive to source alternatives
- There can be some annoying side effects
- It is not a long-term diet solution
Last modified: 21st October 2020