Welcome to my collection of resources intended to help you begin a lasting lifestyle change (and lose weight, feel better, and get your blood sugars under control!) If you haven’t already, you may want to download my Guide to Sustainable Weight Loss – available over there in the side bar.
OK, so where to start?
Take a deep breath and do some prep work 🙂 Print out my Healthy Eating Food List and circle all your favorite foods. These will be the basis of your meals.
Protein is the most important nutrient in any diet, it is literally what we are made of, from our skin, to our organs, to our bones. Eating enough protein will make you feel nourished and satisfied.
Take a few minutes to think about what protein foods you like to eat at each meal – make a list.
What happens next is up to you and your goals and what you know about yourself. Take a look at my “gradually, or all at once” document and see which approach appeals to you.
Regardless of which approach you take, it’s important to know what the end goal is – eating naturally satisfying, nourishing foods that help your body sustain steady energy, lose fat, and be healthier.
There was a time when I would have said, “As long as your carbs are low, it doesn’t matter how much you eat.” And honestly, this works for some people, some of the time. These days I’m thinking more about satiety. How filling and nourishing are the foods we’re eating?
What’s the best way to get that nourished, satisfied feeling after a meal?
Start with a good portion of protein, at least 1/3 of your daily requirement, so for women 4-6 ounces, men 5-7 ounces. If the protein is very lean, like chicken breast, white fish, lean wild game, or tofu, add some fat in the form of butter, olive oil, tallow, bacon fat, or other rich sauce. Don’t drown it, just enough to feel full at the end of the meal. Add some veggies from the Healthy Eating list, with a little pat of butter, olive oil, or other sauce, and you’re set! If the protein you are eating has more fat naturally, you may not need to add fat to feel full. Experiment!
Check out the Quick and Filling Meals List for some ideas and recipe resources.
When your body is getting used to burning fat instead of sugar, you may need to snack and/or eat more fat. This is a temporary situation. Stop eating when you’re full and don’t snack if you’re not hungry. Snacks should always include both protein and fat, so hardboiled eggs, cheese, ham, bacon etc are good choices. Crunchy veggies are fine with a rich dip or along with a protein.
Regardless of what KINDS of foods you’re eating, it is always possible to sabotage the plan. A ketogenic/low carb/low insulin diet is no exception. Back in the day when keto treats were limited to sugar-free jello and whipped cream, without the myriad of keto bars, desserts, and chocolates that are now available, it was easier to stick to whole foods. Now it needs to be a conscious choice.
What? No treats?
That’s not what I’m saying 🙂 I’m just saying be aware of the role “treats” have in your daily eating. If your weight loss stalls, you’re feeling tired, or having a lot of cravings, take an honest look at the “extras” and see if you can substitute something that is lower in energy (fat/carbs). Also take a look at your meals and make sure your protein amounts are where they should be.
You’ll need more salt in your diet when you cut down on the carbohydrates you eat. Drink broth with at least 1/4 tsp of salt per cup. A couple mugs a day should be good, but more is OK. Add salt to your foods. You may have heard of the “keto flu” with headaches, fatigue, and grumpiness? You can avoid most or all of those symptoms by getting enough salt. See my blog post for more information.
Last, but not least, intermittent fasting!
Intermittent Fasting (IF) was a game changer for me in decreased hunger, mental clarity, and being able to sustain a weight loss (for the first time ever!). I’m not the only one, there are hundreds of thousands of people fasting right now 🙂
When you are comfortable going 5 or more hours between meals because you’re just not hungry, you’re ready to try intermittent fasting if you’d like. Having longer breaks between meals helps your insulin levels to drop even more than a low carb/keto diet. I’ve got a whole blog post about the progression to follow when starting with fasting, you can read it here.
Could you use someone in your corner, cheering you on?
Health coaching has been shown to help clients lose more weight, and keep it off! My “In Your Corner” program will help you get unstuck and moving toward your goals, whether you’re just getting started, have hit a plateau, or are working to make your weight loss “stick” this time.