Carbs to Keto: An Introduction
My first encounter with keto was December 31st, 2017. I know this because it was New Year’s Eve, and I was throwing down chocolate croissants and champagne like they were going out of style when the subject first came up. It was another decadent little get-together at my Work Wife’s house and the snacks were endless; I’m pretty sure she bought out the entire bakery section of Whole Foods.
“Want some?” I asked a coworker, gesturing to my plate piled with cookies.
“No thanks, I’m eating Keto right now,” she said.
Of course, I immediately asked her, “what’s Keto?” while stuffing a third chocolate chip cookie into my mouth..
As I chewed, she explained. “To put it simply, Keto is a high-fat, low-carb diet. It eliminates processed foods, carbohydrates, and sugar. It requires a moderate protein intake and a majority of your daily calories come from high-quality fats.”
“Carbs mess with your blood sugar levels and cause cravings,” she told me, “so I don’t eat any. I mostly eat meat, vegetables, and fat. LOTS of fat!” she laughed.
I told her that I could never imagine living that way: giving up pizza crust, and birthday cake, and basically all of my reasons for living, but I wished her luck.
You had me at “fat bombs.”
Fate stepped in two months later when I was at a housewarming and I heard that word again: “Keto.” Now more curious than ever, I began talking to the mystery ketoer and learned that the keto diet can do more than just help me drop pounds. As someone who suffers from chronic stomach aches, adult acne, and weight fluctuation, I was immediately attracted to the idea of decreased inflammation that comes as a benefit of keto.
As our conversation rolled on, I became fascinated with the Keto concept: cheese, meat, fat, and it can help my stomach and skin problems. It sounded far fetched.
Then it happened. This happened. I mentioned that I was a lifestyle writer and blogger and before I knew it, my new conversation buddy was asking me to try keto for 2 weeks and keep a daily journal for her upcoming keto restaurant… no wonder she knew so much about keto.
I jumped at the chance. Now I had a handful of new reasons to give this diet a shot.
I searched KETO online and found a ton of resources and appealing recipes (like this one here)... How can it be even be called a diet when you get to eat salmon, cheese, avocados, and things called Fat Bombs every day? So, I was in.
Write a daily journal, 1 entry at the end of every day of my keto journey.
Don’t spare the details, no matter how TMI they might be... I mean, one way toof checking your keto progress is to pee on a test strip, so...
Tell it like it is. The good, the bad, the ugly. Be impartial… basically, embrace my role as a guinea pig.
Ok, I can do this. Cheese me!
Check it to Prep it, Let’s Begin
I downloaded a keto shopping list, tweaked it for my preferences, and drove to the store excited to buy cheese and bacon in bulk, guilt-free for the first time in my life.
I even had a little keto speech ready in case anyone looked sideways at my cart full of fats. Little did I realize, not only did people not question my choices, I wasn’t the only carb-free cart zipping up and down the aisles. Peeping other keto-carts actually gave me some pretty good ideas.
With the fridge stocked and the cupboards cleared of sugar and carbs, I was ready to begin. Tomorrow wasn’t just Monday, it was Keto day 1 and I was prepared.
NOTE: This series is a real-time journal of how my body responded to a strict keto diet for 14 days. I have included the infographic below as a reference point for what chemical changes were happening in my body on each day. Please remember that I am not a medical professional and that everyone’s body is different! Your body may not respond to this diet the same way mine did, nor will your journey necessarily look like mine. If you feel inspired to adapt the keto lifestyle, or if you just want more information, click here for resources on where to start.