If your New Year’s Resolution is to lose weight, and you want to try the keto diet, please use caution. I learned that an acquaintance went on the keto diet and ended up in urgent care with kidney issues. If you are going to try keto, please drink plenty of water. This is especially important for those of us who live at high altitude where adequate hydration is a constant challenge.
Keto may be a good option to kick-start your weight loss, but it can easily become boring. If you give in to your carb cravings, you can easily regain those pounds, and more. A good diet is a one that is safe and teaches long term healthy eating habits. Here’s some great advice from Marcelo Campos, MD of Harvard Medical School, “Instead of engaging in the next popular diet that would last only a few weeks to months (for most people that includes a ketogenic diet), try to embrace change that is sustainable over the long term.”
Don’t Forget the Protein
It’s nice to think that we can eat lots of fatty foods and stay slim, but don’t forget that exercise plus optimal dietary protein builds lean muscle. Lean muscles burn calories, even when you’re sleeping. You want to lose fat, but keep the muscle.
Protein needs will depend on your weight and activity level. Here’s a recommendation from nutrition expert Hope Barkoukis, PhD, RD on Optimal Protein Intake during weight loss, “The dose-response research regarding protein recommendations associated with increased thermic effect, increased satiety, and attenuation (lessening) of the lean mass lost during energy restriction are still emerging, but they appear to be in the range of 1.2 to 1.6 g of protein/kg body weight.”
- So if you weigh 150 lbs (68 kg), your daily protein intake should be 82 to 109 grams.
Healthy Fats and Whole Foods
My two favorite concentrated fats for cooking or in salad dressing are butter and olive oil. Be sure to include higher fat whole foods like nuts, avocados, and cheese in your smart keto plan. These whole foods come wrapped in a healthy nutrient package with critical protein, vitamins and minerals. Here’s a list of foods that contain both fat and protein to boost satiety in your diet. They are a great addition to any weight management program.
|Cheddar Cheese, 1 oz||111||9.1||0.0||7.1|
|Egg, Large Hard Boiled||77||5.3||0.6||6.3|
|Almonds, 1 oz, Roasted, No Salt||169||15.0||5.5||6.3|
| Half & Half Cream, |
|String Cheese, 1 oz||80||5.0||0.0||7.0|
|Peanut Butter, 1 oz||179||14.0||6.8||6.2|
| Greek Yogurt, 1 Cup, |
|TOTAL||1000||74 g |
| 30 g |
| 56 g |
Eat Less Sugar
We used to think that fat was the diet culprit, but now most nutrition experts agree that excess dietary sugar is the number one enemy of weight control. Focus on eating less sugar and less simple carbohydrates like the ones found in white bread, crackers, and cookies. Meat, fish and poultry provide high quality protein. For optimum efficiency, spread your protein intake evenly throughout the day. Round out your diet with colorful fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and judicious amounts of higher fat whole foods. As for sugar and coconut oil . . . they make an excellent body scrub.