Tips for Starting Keto

Photo by Katie Smith on Unsplash

A few weeks I ago, I shared a post about how I got started on Keto. I went into the backstory of the why behind why I wanted to do Keto and today, I'm sharing my tips on how you can get started. Since publishing that blog post, I've received messages from friends and acquaintances with questions about Keto and how to know if you're ready to start. I've compiled my best tips and suggestions to share. Enjoy!

1. do your Science-y research. 

Understand what Keto is and why you want to do it (or any lifestyle change). 

When you're doing your research, you're going to see over and over that Keto is short for Ketogenic. Ketogenic is the state in which your body produces Ketones to be used as energy.  Your body can either run on glucose (sugar) or ketones (fat). You can either be a sugar burner or a fat burner. When you eat the Standard American Diet that's high carbohydrate and low fat, you're a sugar burner. When you eat Keto that's high in fat and low in carbohydrates, you're a fat burner.

I am not a scientist or a nutritionist, but I am a believer. You can read more on the basics of Keto and the science-y stuff here, here, and here. I also read this book and it was incredibly helpful for me. 

2. Do your Personal Research

If you are just looking to lose and gain the same 20 pounds over and over again, you can skip this step. 

If you're like me and want a lifelong solution to being healthy on the inside and reversing conditions like PCOS and prevent type 2 diabetes, then you MUST be willing to dig deep on a personal level to uncover your "whys."

What's motivating you? What's driving you toward change? Are you living up to your potential (wrote some thoughts about that here)? Are you being the person you truly want to be?

You have to be willing to answer those questions on a heart level, not a surface level. Once you do, you know what you're looking for. Even if you aren't a goal oriented person you can do this because there is a difference between quality of life and goals. I'm not very goal oriented, by the way. 

If I've learned one thing over the years it's that you cannot force someone or yourself into a lifestyle change. It's a personal choice. YOU have to be willing to recognize what you want and realize that you have to do act and think differently in order for things to change. If you want different, you have to do different. That's been my personal mantra for the better part of 2018. You can adopt it, too. I'll share!

Doing your personal research helps you act and think differently so you can get the different results. 

3. Forget all the rules about "eating healthy"

To buy into the whole Ketogenic lifestyle, you need to be a little bit of a conspiracy theorist. It's funny because it's true! Like I mentioned above, I am not a doctor, nutritionist, or a scientist, but you don't have to have a medical degree to know that processed food is terrible for you and environmental toxins are wreaking havoc on our bodies. You do not have to be a scientist to know that feeding animals chemically altered food effects the meat products, which in turn effects the consumer. You do not have to be a nutritionist to know that eating chemically processed food is not the way our bodies were designed. 

Keto is basically the food pyramid turned upside down. Keto is a high-fat, low carbohydrate way of eating (WOE). You're looking for healthy fats (butter, coconut oil, nuts, full-fat/good quality dairy), a moderate amount of quality protein (grass fed beef, non-vegetarian fed chicken, salmon, etc), and limited carbohydrates (leafy greens, vegetables, not starchy vegetables like potatoes, sweet potatoes, and corn). When you're eating a combinations of these foods they are the most delicious, flavorful, and satisfying foods! 

It doesn't take long to get over "food guilt" once you realize just how good real butter is and what it can do for ANYTHING. It's just a little difficult to change your muscle memory. All of the sudden mayo is encouraged and bacon is welcomed. It takes a hot minute to get adjusted to.  

What I am not interested in is a debate about this way of eating vs. that way of eating. Every way of eating (WOE) has pros and cons. Every WOE has scientific studies backing them up (the real question here is are those studies credible, but I digress). If you aren't on the Keto train, that's cool. However, I've done my research and I know that Keto is the right WOE for me. 

4. Don't tell anybody what you're doing

This is the perfect follow up to forgetting all the old rules about "healthy eating." Unless people have done the research and have seen for themselves the benefits of eating Keto, they aren't really going to understand. They might try to debate with you on why multi-grain wheat bread is good for you or give you weird looks when you say you skip breakfast everyday. You can have those conversations when the time is right. For me, I needed to sit a while with Keto and continue doing the "science-y" research, so I could confidently know what I was talking about and know whether or not it was working for me. 

Luke and I didn't tell anyone that we were doing Keto for months and I'm glad we kept our mouths shut. You see, now we have the results to back up what we say. People have seen us stick to Keto and fully enjoy ourselves. Also, the methodology is second nature to us now, so we can casually talk about it without feeling like we have no idea what we're actually saying! 

The final tip is to just start

You can start a new WOE on a Tuesday. It doesn't have to be the first day of the next month. It can be any old day. I think that you'll just know when it's the right time for you to start. Also, you don't have to make a complete 180 and start strict Keto at the beginning. You can take your time and warm up to it. Like I said in my first post about why I started Keto, I started really slow. I started leaving the starchy carbs off my plate during the week while I was continuing to learn the ins and outs about Keto. You can do the same! Whatever you're starting looks like, just go ahead and do it! Don't wait for a magical time because there will never be the perfect time.

Those are my tips for getting started with Keto! I hope that you find it helpful and are encouraged to make a lifestyle change. Don't forget to follow my Keto instagram account @campbellhouseketo ! I post food pics and updates. It's been a really fun and helpful project for me! - JJ