16 votes

Has anyone tried the keto diet? If so, would you recommend it?

Tags: diet, keto

For the last three years at university I've been eating like crap, but luckily my metabilism is relatively high so it hasn't really become much of an issue. Despite this, I still want to make a complete change and try and live a much more healthier life as I'm not going to be this age forever. I already cycle a lot, but I know exercise is one part of the equation and so I want to try a complete overhaul of my diet as well. I've heard and read a few things about the keto diet but was wondering if any other users have already tried. If so, did it work effectively? How hard was it to shift your eating habits and change up what you normally eat? I'm pretty confident I could manage it I would just like to see if anyone already has some experience with the diet and whether they would recommend it or not.

49 comments

  1. [6]
    vexacia
    Link
    Your metabolism isn't actually that fast. Or maybe it is, but it makes nearly no difference. The difference in basal metabolic rate for ~96% of the human population is +/-150 calories per day;...

    Your metabolism isn't actually that fast. Or maybe it is, but it makes nearly no difference. The difference in basal metabolic rate for ~96% of the human population is +/-150 calories per day; that is, extreme outliers aside (which you almost assuredly are not, alongside every other person who claims a "fast" or "slow" metabolism), the difference between an average very slow metabolism and an average very fast metabolism is ~300 calories / day.

    While this discrepancy will account for a small difference in weight (someone who is a little slim versus someone who has a little extra), nobody gets seriously underweight or overweight on the basis of 300 calories a day. In over to be seriously underweight you need a serious calorie deficit, and in order to be seriously overweight you need an even more serious calorie surplus.


    Soapboxing aside, if healthiness and weight maintenance or loss are your primary goals, I would personally recommend strongly against Keto and strongly for WFPB (Whole Foods Plant Based diet). Animal products have some seriously gnarly effects on your health over time, especially your risk for heart disease and cancer, and Keto often mega overloads you with meat and dairy in order to avoid carbs and remain in Ketosis. Meat and dairy are also loaded with the bad kind of cholesterol, and processed products are often loaded with transfats too (WFPB avoids anything processed).

    If you'd be serious about Keto you can be serious about WFPB, considering Keto presents even greater difficulty and food preparation requirements along with greater financial cost. But if WFPB is too difficult, restrictive, annoying, or time consuming for you, like it is for many people (myself included!), you might try simple veganism instead (i.e. no animal products, literally anything else goes - that's where I'm at, and it's seriously growing in popularity). Basic veganism is monumentally easier than either WFPB or Keto ("am I allowed to eat it?" well, if it's human-edible and has no animal products, the answer is always yes), and still worlds healthier than the Standard American Diet (SAD).

    It's technically possible to be an overweight vegan, but you really have to go painfully out of your way on the junk/snackfood (oreos are vegan) and/or the pasta in order to get there. It's a little easier to accidentally be an unhealthy vegan (you could probably survive on oreos but you'd be malnourished and sick all the time), but it's trivial to choose healthy food without any real, conscious thought when so much unhealthy garbage is already restricted away.

    edit: typos/formatting

    10 votes
    1. [2]
      palpitations
      Link Parent
      This one point is misleading according to the latest research available. Dietary cholesterol has little impact on blood cholesterol for most people, though there are some people who do respond to...

      Meat and dairy are also loaded with the bad kind of cholesterol

      This one point is misleading according to the latest research available. Dietary cholesterol has little impact on blood cholesterol for most people, though there are some people who do respond to it. Here's what the Cleveland Clinic and Harvard have to say about it.

      I think you're also kind of overstating how easy it is to go vegan... Part of that comes down to how strict you are about things (if you're watching out for isinglass, bone char, carmine, and all the other things most people don't even know exist), and part of it is due to the challenge of getting complete proteins and nutrition from a limited subset of foods. Of course, keto has similar downsides, except instead of looking for hidden animal ingredients you're keeping an eye out for hidden carbs, and instead of hunting down lysine you're watching your electrolytes.

      It is easy to do either one poorly -- I should know, I've done a shit job of both. It's much harder to do them in a healthy and sustainable way. For me, a middle path has been the best -- lots of vegetables, almost no grains, a bit of meat. I don't think I could have gotten there without keto breaking my addiction to carbs, and without veganism to expand my taste for plant-based foods.

      7 votes
      1. crwcomposer
        Link Parent
        If you're going vegan for purely dietary/health reasons, then you don't have to worry about hidden animal products, because that small amount of bone char or carmine is not significant to your...

        If you're going vegan for purely dietary/health reasons, then you don't have to worry about hidden animal products, because that small amount of bone char or carmine is not significant to your nutrition.

        1 vote
    2. [2]
      Amarok
      Link Parent
      Everyone should try vegan for a little while - just because you'll go on a rampage through a mountain of funky fruits and veggies you never knew existed trying to find new flavors. You really need...

      Everyone should try vegan for a little while - just because you'll go on a rampage through a mountain of funky fruits and veggies you never knew existed trying to find new flavors. You really need a good grocer to make the most of this, and it can get expensive - but once you find your new favorites you never new existed, they become staples in whatever your future meal plans might become even if you don't stay strictly vegan.

      2 votes
      1. bchall
        Link Parent
        I agree. There are so many foods that are vegetarian or vegan that are good in their own right, but that many people won't try because they're labeled as such and that turns them away. I think a...

        I agree. There are so many foods that are vegetarian or vegan that are good in their own right, but that many people won't try because they're labeled as such and that turns them away. I think a lot of this is due to the "meat in every meal" cultural meme that seems to exist in many places (US especially).

    3. Ark
      Link Parent
      I never knew that about metabolism, so I am glad you got on your soapbox! It does seem that keto is only good for short-term weight loss which is not my focus, so I'll definitely consider WFPB as...

      I never knew that about metabolism, so I am glad you got on your soapbox!

      It does seem that keto is only good for short-term weight loss which is not my focus, so I'll definitely consider WFPB as one of my options, as well as veganism. I think for me it'll be a case of finding a diet where I can still enjoy a lot of the food I currently enjoy whilst keeping my body healthy and well fuelled for my hopefully more active lifestyle.

      Excellent reply by the way, very detailed and informative. Exactly why I am using tildes more and more!

  2. [18]
    rkcr
    Link
    I would seriously consider doing some more diet research before going into keto. For example, it ranks absolutely last on US News & World Report's diet rankings

    I would seriously consider doing some more diet research before going into keto. For example, it ranks absolutely last on US News & World Report's diet rankings

    5 votes
    1. [17]
      Ark
      Link Parent
      Any idea why they ranked it so low? From what I've read a lot of people say it only has a positive effect on your health.

      Any idea why they ranked it so low? From what I've read a lot of people say it only has a positive effect on your health.

      2 votes
      1. [16]
        rkcr
        Link Parent
        You can read the health experts' reasons here. It isn't a good sign when you see quotes like “This diet is fundamentally at odds with everything we know about long-term health." It ranks pretty...

        You can read the health experts' reasons here. It isn't a good sign when you see quotes like “This diet is fundamentally at odds with everything we know about long-term health."

        It ranks pretty decently for short-term weight loss (which is all most people care about) but I believe in a much longer view of one's dietary goals.

        4 votes
        1. [15]
          Ark
          Link Parent
          Hmm yeah I didn't realise that there were so many negatives posed by the diet. My goal isn't really weight loss, as I'm already pretty skinny due to my high metabolism. The change in diet is more...

          Hmm yeah I didn't realise that there were so many negatives posed by the diet.

          My goal isn't really weight loss, as I'm already pretty skinny due to my high metabolism. The change in diet is more just for healthier eating instead of McDonalds every three days. I'm going to browse through the list you linked and see what some of the top ranked diets are, thank you for linking that site.

          2 votes
          1. Tom_Richardson
            Link Parent
            So I'm 6 weeks into keto and loving it. I got into it for weight loss, and have been surprised to find that there are benefits I didn't anticipate. My starting body fat was around 22%, and I'm...

            So I'm 6 weeks into keto and loving it. I got into it for weight loss, and have been surprised to find that there are benefits I didn't anticipate.

            My starting body fat was around 22%, and I'm working to get it down to 10%, after which point I plan to start working out to build more lean body mass. Do you know your body fat percentage(keep in mind that if you've got a lot of muscle / very little muscle these images may not represent you well)? People think I'm skinny because I'm tall and don't show it much, but I was surprised to learn how high I had gotten.

            Before keto, I was constantly hungry and dealing with cycles of low-blood-sugar and then blood-sugar-comas after eating. I was on a standard american diet, eat whatever seems good, try to eat "healthy foods", try portion control. I cut out all sugar drinks and artificially sweetened drinks years ago, and rarely ate desert foods. Carbs were still my go-to, however, especially corn chips, pop corn, and flour tortilla foods like tacos and burritos, and anything with beans - loved beans.

            After the first week of keto, my appetite disappeared completely. I would forget breakfast, forget lunch, and only start thinking about food around dinner time. And I felt GREAT - totally awake, energized, awesome. For about four weeks, I had to force myself to eat enough protein, fiber, fat, and veggies to maintain healthy nutrition. In the past week, my appetite has come back, though not ravenously, and I find my meals incredibly filling and satisfying - I rarely think about food, which in itself is the greatest thing to happen to me since, well, sliced bread.

            I'm a ways from my goal and my thinking is likely to change, but at this point I don't think I'll return to eating carbs. I just feel too damn good. And I like simple meals, eggs with greens, taco salads, chicken salad, etc., so I'm lucky in that regard I guess. If I do add them back in, it will perhaps be the occasional sweet potato.

            I'm using www.eatthismuch.com to plan my meals and track my intake. There's a premium/paid side to it, but I just use the free features, and I highly recommend it.

            2 votes
          2. KenyaFeelMe
            Link Parent
            I just wanted to give a slightly different take based on my experience with Keto over the last 5 years. Keto is the induction phase of Atkins. It’s gotten much more fleshed out over the years but...

            I just wanted to give a slightly different take based on my experience with Keto over the last 5 years.

            Keto is the induction phase of Atkins. It’s gotten much more fleshed out over the years but that’s essentially what it is. It’s also very effective at what it does. It was more widely used as a treatment for epilepsy and eventually it was used for diabetics. It’s not something that would have necessarily been recommended for someone who just wanted to eat healthier since it’s akin to bringing a bomb to a gun fight. The symptoms people experience upon starting the diet can be brutal. I personally wouldn’t think it was worth it if my health was otherwise okay.

            The diet also gets a bad rep because a lot of people who are vocal about the diet aren’t really following it. It’s not meat on meat on MEAT drenched in 1 pint of clarified butter. You’re encouraged to replace the simple carbs with complex carbs instead of protein like some folks seem to think you’re supposed to do. The ability to throw a quarter cup of cheese or make a creamy pan sauce to go with the extra veggies you’re adding to your diet makes sticking to it so much easier (if that’s your thing of course). But you still have to pay attention to the macros in the beginning so that you learn the amount that’s appropriate for your body. It’s very easy to get carried away with the prime rib and scotch, feel too full for the steamed asparagus with cauliflower mash, then have a panic attack after stepping on the scale and seeing no progress.

            I’m not currently following Keto. While I didn’t miss the sugar, I did want the freedom to occasionally eat grains. There are some valid criticisms of the diet, but at the end of the day, the medical profession was using the diet to treat more serious health conditions. But I can see why they wouldn’t want to encourage the public to take up Keto all willy nilly given how disasterous some of the side effects can be for those that aren’t following it while under medical care.

            If you still feel like trying it, you might really enjoy it. But you might be better served following something a little less intense if your current goal is eating more balanced meals.

            2 votes
          3. [12]
            rkcr
            Link Parent
            Eating McDonald's every three days isn't that bad, you could be in a MUCH worse spot. :) Based on what you're looking for, I might look into the Mediterranean diet (or something similar). It's not...

            Eating McDonald's every three days isn't that bad, you could be in a MUCH worse spot. :)

            Based on what you're looking for, I might look into the Mediterranean diet (or something similar). It's not a specific set of dieting practices - instead it's just an outline of what sorts of foods you should eat to stay healthy overall.

            1 vote
            1. [11]
              Ark
              Link Parent
              You should've seen my floor at university, it looked like a spillage occurred at the recycling center. That's the type of diet I'm looking for. Not constant management 24/7, but good overall...

              You should've seen my floor at university, it looked like a spillage occurred at the recycling center.

              That's the type of diet I'm looking for. Not constant management 24/7, but good overall guidelines on what I should be eating, thanks for the suggestion!

              1. [10]
                Amarok
                Link Parent
                Baseless keto-bashing aside, the parent has a point - Mediterranean diet is excellent. It may be more to your tastes than keto, which is primarily a meat-eater's paradise. It's less about the...

                Baseless keto-bashing aside, the parent has a point - Mediterranean diet is excellent. It may be more to your tastes than keto, which is primarily a meat-eater's paradise. It's less about the specific diet than it is about staying away from sugar and processed foods in favor of natural foods.

                4 votes
                1. [5]
                  Ark
                  Link Parent
                  I think yes Mediterranean may be more my style. I like the flexibility and staying away from sugar and processed foods is something I'm actively trying to do at the moment.

                  I think yes Mediterranean may be more my style. I like the flexibility and staying away from sugar and processed foods is something I'm actively trying to do at the moment.

                  1. [4]
                    tildesatwindmills
                    Link Parent
                    You either keto or you don't - it requires constant fidelity, aiming for no cheating, no slipping. If you do slip or cheat (or get fooled by what you thought was safe), you can knock yourself out...

                    You either keto or you don't - it requires constant fidelity, aiming for no cheating, no slipping. If you do slip or cheat (or get fooled by what you thought was safe), you can knock yourself out of ketosis and have to start that adjustment process over again. Read into keto, it's not actually a "reasonable and normal" diet, in my opinion it's a "big gun" tool for weight loss and people in special medical situations (epilepsy, some mental conditions, etc). Not to say that it can't work long term for many (it did for me) but it is a lot of work.

                    If you're not seriously overweight and you're active, a reasonable diet like the Mediterranean diet would probably be much easier.

                    Keto, for me, let me drop 50 extra pounds while eating as much as I wanted. I suffer from anxiety and responded to that anxiety with binge eating. Keto kept me healthy until I got that under control. It also helped my mood better than any medication ever has.

                    I fell off the keto diet after trying a new medication and haven't had the extra "oomph" to get started again. Also, keto is easiest when you're single and not on a tight budget.

                    1 vote
                    1. [2]
                      Amarok
                      Link Parent
                      The easiest way to get away with cheating on a keto diet is to directly follow up your cheat day with a fasting day. It'll snap you directly back into keto within one day every time, even if you...

                      The easiest way to get away with cheating on a keto diet is to directly follow up your cheat day with a fasting day. It'll snap you directly back into keto within one day every time, even if you go crazy pigging out like a maniac on your cheat days. Even the keto-flu effect is short-lived if you go this route, for me it's like a mild morning hangover. Just don't ever make the mistake of doing two cheat days in a row because it will not snap back that fast - your body will complete the transition back to carb-mode instead, and then it's a lot harder.

                      1. tildesatwindmills
                        Link Parent
                        That's good information to have! I found the biggest keto benefit fo me was the improvement in mood (lower anxiety) and that was the first thing to go away and stayed away for days after an "oops,...

                        That's good information to have! I found the biggest keto benefit fo me was the improvement in mood (lower anxiety) and that was the first thing to go away and stayed away for days after an "oops, that sausage had sugar in it? WTF?" moment. I'll add "morning after fasting" to the skills toolbox!

                    2. Ark
                      Link Parent
                      Yeah I'm actually average weight so I think I'm going to look at the Mediterranean diet like a lot of other users have suggested. I can see how it would appeal to those looking to drop weight...

                      Yeah I'm actually average weight so I think I'm going to look at the Mediterranean diet like a lot of other users have suggested. I can see how it would appeal to those looking to drop weight drastically but my focus is more just healthy eating than weight loss.

                2. [4]
                  rkcr
                  Link Parent
                  I don't think it's fair to say my bashing is "baseless" when I provided sources (from health experts) for my comments.

                  I don't think it's fair to say my bashing is "baseless" when I provided sources (from health experts) for my comments.

                  1. [3]
                    Amarok
                    Link Parent
                    I called it 'baseless' because from my reading that page doesn't reflect the state of the science at all. I also see a clickbait-style format on that site and a definite lack of 'expert' names and...

                    I called it 'baseless' because from my reading that page doesn't reflect the state of the science at all. I also see a clickbait-style format on that site and a definite lack of 'expert' names and links to science articles backing up those scores and claims. In other words, to me that looks like a 'fluff' site full of baseless information - the typical anti-keto rhetoric you see from most diet websites. I prefer actual science and I can handily provide a couple dozen more links like that one which show how inaccurate the usnews site is.

                    The facts at present are that keto is one of the healthiest lifestyle choices available for weight loss, provided you haven't got kidney or liver problems, and remember to mix in a healthy variety of fruits and veggies and vitamins - and watch the salt intake. No studies I've seen have found yet any long-term problems with people living this way - however, given the relative lack of research on long-term ketosis, that shouldn't be construed to mean that there won't be any. All we know at present is that it's got the best results of any weight loss strategy for obese individuals and that using it for that purpose has no health risks on a decade-long time scale.

                    1. [2]
                      rkcr
                      Link Parent
                      I still dispute your "baseless" claim; I don't think you noticed that the report includes a specific list of the people who they questioned as well as their methodology. I'm also partially basing...

                      I still dispute your "baseless" claim; I don't think you noticed that the report includes a specific list of the people who they questioned as well as their methodology. I'm also partially basing my stance on the Science Vs. Keto podcast.

                      Science is tricky with new research arriving all the time. It could be that keto is the best thing since sliced bread, but frankly I don't have time to be an expert on everything, so I turn to expert summaries for stuff that I'm not delving deep into. And in general, those have been fairly negative on keto.

                      1 vote
                      1. Amarok
                        Link Parent
                        That's more like it - perhaps that site would benefit from making that information more visible instead of trying to make me click on more of their stories. :P I will also be checking out that...

                        That's more like it - perhaps that site would benefit from making that information more visible instead of trying to make me click on more of their stories. :P I will also be checking out that podcast - thanks for the link.

                        It's been my experience that there's an old-school anti-fat mindset bias out there (a cognitive hangover from the last fifty years) and that bias has no foundation in the realm of science. It's simply 'what we've always taught' everyone, and when people encounter new information that goes against that level of ingrained training it's always an uphill battle getting them to consider the new information. When you turn an entire field upside-down going from carbs-are-good, fat-is-bad to the opposite, it's total carnage. How do you change the food industry and get them away from HFCS now that we know it's almost as bad as alcohol?

                        That's why I try to stick to the peer-reviewed science - it's not perfect but it's generally less biased than other sources of information. My favorite are the all-too-rare 'study of studies' where groups do a massive field-wide roundup/summary of a large collection of prior data from other studies.

                        1 vote
  3. [2]
    tildesatwindmills
    Link
    Yes, did keto for over 2 years - very successfully! Lost a lot of weight, ate as much as I wanted (which was a lot) and my health (lab tests, etc) was never better. I found within three months, I...

    Yes, did keto for over 2 years - very successfully! Lost a lot of weight, ate as much as I wanted (which was a lot) and my health (lab tests, etc) was never better. I found within three months, I no longer even wanted the carbs (sugar & flour, mostly) and only struggled with what to wrap food in until I figured out green leaf lettice wraps for sandwich replacements.

    Cons: meal prep, less "easy" or packaged food options, costs more than "normal" diets if you buy quality ingredients (but still less than eating out a lot).

    I fell off the keto wagon when life got busy/challenging but want to go back on it.

    Reddit has a good keto subreddit and r/ketorecipes is worth searching and saving recipes from.

    4 votes
    1. Ark
      Link Parent
      Wow, that's pretty cool that you actually didn't want to eat carbs anymore after such a short period of time as well! I do love me a good sandwich but as you mentioned I'm sure there are plenty of...

      Wow, that's pretty cool that you actually didn't want to eat carbs anymore after such a short period of time as well! I do love me a good sandwich but as you mentioned I'm sure there are plenty of alternatives!

      I don't really mind taking a bit more time to prep meals, I also want to improve my culinary skills as well so for me it's a bonus. I don't really mind paying the extra money here and there, especially if it's still cheaper than takeaways.

      Have you still managed to stay healthy after falling off the wagon? I would want to have some kind of fall back option in case it didn't work out for me.

      Very nice, I'll have to check those out, thanks for the suggestion!

  4. [2]
    DonQuixote
    Link
    As a long time low-carb work in progress, which I realize is not the same as Keto, the avoidance of sugar, especially refined white sugar whenever possible is important for any diet. The body just...

    As a long time low-carb work in progress, which I realize is not the same as Keto, the avoidance of sugar, especially refined white sugar whenever possible is important for any diet. The body just isn't made for this. Next comes refined carbs like rolls and white bread. If you limit these, or better eliminate them entirely for a time, plus exercise or stay active, you'll feel much much better overall.

    Over the years I've found that you get bored eating the same things, especially with most 'diets'. Three years on low carb and I was ready for something different. The problem is your appetite is highly dependent so many things, stress being one of the major ones that derails the best intentions.

    Lately I've been compelled to undergo a 24 hour fast from time to time, while avoiding those foods mentioned above. So, good luck and congratulations for wanting to eat better! If you want a super technical popular review on why we get fat, you can try Good Calories, Bad Calories by Gary Taubes. For another easier read, try his other book Why We Get Fat.

    4 votes
    1. Ark
      Link Parent
      That's what a lot of other users have been saying as well, sugar is the real enemy not fat. I am worried that eventually I'll get bored and want to change up my diet somewhat, but as a person of...

      That's what a lot of other users have been saying as well, sugar is the real enemy not fat.

      I am worried that eventually I'll get bored and want to change up my diet somewhat, but as a person of normal weight this would probably be quite easy I think.

      I'm actually really interested in this kind of stuff and how our body deals with different foods so I'll definitely try and give them a read, thanks for the suggestions!

  5. [6]
    epitten
    Link
    OP, do you currently track what you eat? Regardless of what diet you choose to go with, you will need to keep track of what you eat to some degree. In my experience, just keeping track of what I...

    OP, do you currently track what you eat?

    Regardless of what diet you choose to go with, you will need to keep track of what you eat to some degree. In my experience, just keeping track of what I ate turned out to be a big change that required getting used to. I'd thus recommend getting in the habit of logging your meals and snacks before trying a diet.

    Also, what's your goal in going on keto? You said you wanted live a more healthy life, and diet and exercise are just two factors. Considering things like sleep, substance use, and mental and emotional health is also part of a healthy life. Improving your health in each of these areas takes a different level of effort from everyone, so it may be helpful to consider changes in these areas to see if there may be a better way for you to improve your health.

    As you consider these, try to dig into the research a bit. There are diets out there with little to no evidence for their effectiveness, and often time the research helps you set an expectation for how much a new diet will help.

    3 votes
    1. [3]
      Ark
      Link Parent
      Not really but I do make a conscious effort to avoid processed foods and sugar when I can. My main goal is to just eat better and lose that last bit of body fat so that my abs could show through a...

      Not really but I do make a conscious effort to avoid processed foods and sugar when I can.

      My main goal is to just eat better and lose that last bit of body fat so that my abs could show through a bit more and there wouldn't be any excess fat. I'm pretty good with sleep, reading for half an hour beforehand and sleeping for at least 8 hours. Don't use any substances unless you're counting tea and alcohol, and mentally and emotional I'm a pretty positive person. That's not to say I can't improve in anyway though, there's always room for that.

      I think you're right I'm going to need to do some more digging, but ~ users have already shown to me just how helpful and informative others can be, plus it's always good to promote discussion here!

      1. [2]
        epitten
        Link Parent
        If you cook for yourself regularly, that's already a big step towards eating better. If you already do so, try approximating foods that you often go out to eat. This will help you get a better...

        My main goal is to just eat better and lose that last bit of body fat

        If you cook for yourself regularly, that's already a big step towards eating better. If you already do so, try approximating foods that you often go out to eat. This will help you get a better sense of what's going into your food. (You can usually find recipes for the more popular chains online.)

        If you want to lose weight, then definitely keep track of what you eat. You should count alcohol, as well as tea if you put milk/sugar in it.

        I'm still using MyFitnessPal to track my calories, but other users have suggested good apps too.

        Also, this article about fat loss is entertaining and informative. I haven't verified all of this guy's claims, but it's a good starting point to learn about the common mistakes people make when trying to lose fat.

        1 vote
        1. Ark
          Link Parent
          Yeah I think it’ll be changing up my diet slightly and tracking stuff a bit more. No huge change but more of a slight shift in how I approach meals. Will definitely give this a read thanks!

          Yeah I think it’ll be changing up my diet slightly and tracking stuff a bit more. No huge change but more of a slight shift in how I approach meals. Will definitely give this a read thanks!

    2. [2]
      tildesatwindmills
      Link Parent
      I second the food log idea! I use Food Diary for Android but other options are out there too. The point is you will have to plan meals ahead of time, track what you ate and stick to your plan.

      I second the food log idea! I use Food Diary for Android but other options are out there too. The point is you will have to plan meals ahead of time, track what you ate and stick to your plan.

      1. Grapevine
        Link Parent
        Lifesum is great if you want to track basic nutritional value (protein/carbs/fat) throughout your day, my only complaint about it is how much it nags you to get the paid subscription.

        Lifesum is great if you want to track basic nutritional value (protein/carbs/fat) throughout your day, my only complaint about it is how much it nags you to get the paid subscription.

  6. [5]
    Hypersapien
    Link
    I started Keto last summer after my girlfriend went on it because of high blood sugar. I was 260lbs at the time. I weighed myself this morning and was 202lbs. This was without exercise, and we...

    I started Keto last summer after my girlfriend went on it because of high blood sugar. I was 260lbs at the time. I weighed myself this morning and was 202lbs.

    This was without exercise, and we were doing what is known as "lazy keto" (not keeping track of macros).

    Btw, my girlfriend eventually had to go off strict keto because her blood sugar was getting too low.

    2 votes
    1. [4]
      Ark
      Link Parent
      That's a pretty good loss in weight considering you weren't super strict and it only took a year, good job! Does the diet lower your blood sugar by a significant amount then, and is there any way...

      That's a pretty good loss in weight considering you weren't super strict and it only took a year, good job! Does the diet lower your blood sugar by a significant amount then, and is there any way to combat this?

      1. [3]
        Hypersapien
        Link Parent
        Honestly, I don't know how most people's blood sugar reacts to it. One word of warning. It is really hard (although possible) to stay keto unless you're cooking all your own meals. There is sugar...

        Honestly, I don't know how most people's blood sugar reacts to it.

        One word of warning. It is really hard (although possible) to stay keto unless you're cooking all your own meals. There is sugar or other carbs in nearly everything. Even a lot of artificial sweeteners have fillers that mess up your GI.

        2 votes
        1. [2]
          Ark
          Link Parent
          Most likely I will be cooking my own meals, the only thing I'm worried about is if I want the occasional meal that doesn't sit well with the keto diet. I probably need to work on my self-control a...

          Most likely I will be cooking my own meals, the only thing I'm worried about is if I want the occasional meal that doesn't sit well with the keto diet. I probably need to work on my self-control a bit more, but at the same time it would be nice to change it up every so often, however I'm aware this takes your body out of ketosis.

          1. Hypersapien
            Link Parent
            One thing that western (and specifically US) culture teaches us is to keep stuffing our faces. With keto, it's important to listen to your body and stop eating when you're full. Of course, that's...

            One thing that western (and specifically US) culture teaches us is to keep stuffing our faces.

            With keto, it's important to listen to your body and stop eating when you're full.

            Of course, that's good advice even if you're not on keto.

  7. [6]
    TenThousandSuns
    Link
    I've lived it for a year and highly recommend it if you're single and don't go out much. I could plan meals for weeks ahead and get stuff in bulk from Costco. Dump all the meat into the Sous Vide...

    I've lived it for a year and highly recommend it if you're single and don't go out much. I could plan meals for weeks ahead and get stuff in bulk from Costco. Dump all the meat into the Sous Vide on the weekend and ration out eggs/bacon/avocado for each morning. There are a lot of low-carb protein bars you can get for cycling/hiking (I liked Quest cookies and cream). I kept track of everything on the phone (Fat Secret for Android) so my Macros were consistent and carbs under 20. If you like a regimented lifestyle and don't mind eating the same thing for weeks, I recommend it.

    The hardest part was going out with people and being, you know...that guy. Alcohol is fairly carb-y, so you'll drink WAY less, and your tolerance will go down. I remember having a small glass of wine and feeling it; I'm not a lightweight or anything. You'll also start paying attention to those nutrition labels and realize that sugar is in EVERYTHING. It's a good habit.

    Dating a vegetarian made me stop doing it, however, it was just too much to have two separate meal plans and be those people at a restaurant. I kind of miss it, but not that much.

    I know we're all trying to get away from reddit, but it has a fairly good Keto and KetoRecipies communities. If you want some resources or questions, I'd go there first, honestly.

    2 votes
    1. [5]
      Ark
      Link Parent
      I think the fact that it will affect other parts of my life such as going to the pub less and being that guy at the restaurant is definitely the factor that's hindering me from doing it at the...

      I think the fact that it will affect other parts of my life such as going to the pub less and being that guy at the restaurant is definitely the factor that's hindering me from doing it at the moment. I'm okay with changing up what I eat and having to buy new food but when it starts to control other parts of my life that's where I start to become worried.

      Somebody else suggested the subreddits as well, definitely going to check them out.

      1 vote
      1. [4]
        Amarok
        Link Parent
        Stick to Guinness. It's omnipresent and just about the healthiest beer (lowest calorie/carb) you can get - unless you want mic ultra and other low-carb advertising swill (I'll pass, thanks). Trade...

        Stick to Guinness. It's omnipresent and just about the healthiest beer (lowest calorie/carb) you can get - unless you want mic ultra and other low-carb advertising swill (I'll pass, thanks). Trade up the craft beers (also my primary vice and I still love them) for good bourbon or other pure no-sugar spirits. Your hangovers will be much less and so will your tolerance - it doesn't take anywhere near what it used to for me to get a buzz, just a couple shots. More time at the pool table and less time running to the bathroom. Also, how often do you drink? If it's just once a week, all you need is a fasting day and a bit of exercise to counter the beer calories. Cut back on the days at the pub.

        1 vote
        1. [3]
          Ark
          Link Parent
          I think I tried Guinness once and rather disliked it, but that was a while ago so I could try it again and see if my taste buds have changed. Less hangovers are definitely a good thing, as well as...

          I think I tried Guinness once and rather disliked it, but that was a while ago so I could try it again and see if my taste buds have changed. Less hangovers are definitely a good thing, as well as a lower tolerance, certainly makes things a lot cheaper. I don't drink that often really, but when I do I want the ability to not worry about what I'm drinking and just kick back with a beer and some mates.

          1. [2]
            Amarok
            Link Parent
            Try some intermittent fasting. A day without any food is on balance more calorie negative than a day of exercise. If you're just in it for the occasional sunny summer day deck lunch, you don't...

            Try some intermittent fasting. A day without any food is on balance more calorie negative than a day of exercise. If you're just in it for the occasional sunny summer day deck lunch, you don't need to change a thing about those lunches. Just plan to make up the difference with a fasting day or other cuts of some kind. You just have to learn how to tune out the hunger cravings for an hour until they pass on their own, then it's smooth sailing.

            Cheat days should be a part of every diet plan. It's far easier to enjoy your vices on a once-in-a-while basis than it is to walk away from them entirely. It's the excess that's the problem.

            1 vote
            1. Ark
              Link Parent
              I see, looks like I'll need to learn some self-control over food, one of the things I love most dearly.

              I see, looks like I'll need to learn some self-control over food, one of the things I love most dearly.

  8. [4]
    Amarok
    (edited )
    Link
    Keto is the way to go. I was at ~360lbs, zero exercise, basically plugged into a terminal all day long and eating out a lot (plus, the beer lunches weren't helping). Borderline hypertension blood...

    Keto is the way to go.

    I was at ~360lbs, zero exercise, basically plugged into a terminal all day long and eating out a lot (plus, the beer lunches weren't helping). Borderline hypertension blood pressure, starting to show early signs of Type II diabetes (nerve tingling, frequent urination, etc). I did a ton of reading and discovered that - put bluntly - sugar, not fat, is the enemy. You can safely ignore anything that doesn't come directly from a published, peer-reviewed medical journal on this issue, as the 'diet' industry sees their death in the form of keto/paleo and will say and do anything to diss this diet. Funny thing, it's the same diet doctors have been putting heart patients on since the 50s.

    So, I dropped carbs - and I don't mean 20 a day, I mean zero a day. In fact I even skip eating completely some days, particularly if I treat myself to a cheat day. Intermittent fasting is very easy once you've done it a bit. Over the course of one year I went from 360 to 220 with zero exercise, my hypertension disappeared, all symptoms of diabetes disappeared, even my cholesterol went from eek to perfect. Every single indicator on my physical is now not just good, but perfect - to the point where my doctor wanted to know what the hell happened.

    I have far more energy now - ditching the sleep apnea along with the weight was a massive boon. I swapped beer and soda for coffees, teas, creams, and bourbon. I mostly eat lean meats and greens, with occasional nuts and fruits in the mix (not strictly keto, but better for balancing the diet). Also, cheese - all you can eat, and I murder warehouses of sharp cheddar on a regular basis. Steak and eggs is now my breakfast of choice.

    If there's no sugar and easy carbs to burn, your body has no choice but to burn the fat. When it burns the fat you've been eating, it'll also burn some of the fat you've been storing. It'll burn up the crap in your veins during the process. I haven't been sick once since I started this 'diet' three years ago. You can easily do a cheat day once a week as long as you toss in a fasting day to balance it out.

    That said, there are some gotchas. You need vitamins, since keto isn't all that well balanced (that's really the only valid criticism). Toss in some fruits and a wider variety of veggies. Watch the salt intake, a lot of keto foods are heavy on the salt, so drink lots of water. Rice and sweet potatoes are not the 'devils' that the diet makes them out to be either, just don't go overboard. Get used to lettuce wraps and a wide variety of sauces to add some flavor to the diet.

    If you throw in some exercise or reach your ideal weight, you can add a bit more carbs to the mix safely - just stay the hell away from the overly-processed foods.

    There's a very easy way to think about this diet - the 'caveman' diet.

    If a guy in a loincloth with a bow and arrow and spear and twenty of his friends several centuries ago can't get it, you don't eat it. Period. That'll sort out restaurant menus for you in a hot second.

    Edit: Some actual science on the dietary effects of keto. Note that they did administer vitamin supplements. Keto is lax in vitamins, and hard on the liver and kidneys, particularly during the rapid-weight-loss period as your body basically dumps all of the pollutants. It's a great way to lose weight if you have no pre-existing health issues that might complicate matters. Once the weight is off, however, it's probably not the best long-term lifestyle choice - though the jury is still out on that matter.

    2 votes
    1. [3]
      Ark
      Link Parent
      Crikey, seemed to work wonders for you, congratulations! I have read a few things about keeping the vitamins balanced but that's not a huge concern, just a bit of additional effort to make sure...

      Crikey, seemed to work wonders for you, congratulations! I have read a few things about keeping the vitamins balanced but that's not a huge concern, just a bit of additional effort to make sure you're keeping your body topped up. I like the caveman approach though, very good way of judging whether food is good to eat or not.

      1. [2]
        Amarok
        Link Parent
        Just don't treat it as a license to pig out on fats. I've seen far too many people go that route, and it's not that simple. If you eat 40 pounds of bacon a week, it's going to catch up to you. :D

        Just don't treat it as a license to pig out on fats. I've seen far too many people go that route, and it's not that simple. If you eat 40 pounds of bacon a week, it's going to catch up to you. :D

        2 votes
        1. Ark
          Link Parent
          Weirdly enough I prefer the leaner type of meats. Don't get me wrong I love a good steak and bacon/egg sandwich every once in a while, but for the most part I enjoy mainly chicken and fish.

          Weirdly enough I prefer the leaner type of meats. Don't get me wrong I love a good steak and bacon/egg sandwich every once in a while, but for the most part I enjoy mainly chicken and fish.