■ What do you eat?
For breakfast I would have either:
▪️Six (6) homemade parmesan crackers, topped with ham and/or turkey and pepper jack cheese.
▪️3 precooked Jimmy Dean breakfast sausages with either pepper jack or string cheese.
▪️Chicken salad (shredded chicken and mayo), sometimes with avocado, bacon and pepper jack.
▪️Bacon (I bake a whole package of bacon at a time and keep them in the fridge. Microwave for one minute when you need them!) and pepper jack cheese.
My boyfriend would have:
▪️Bacon and pepper jack cheese.
▪️A mini cheesecake and bacon strips.
▪️Banana nut bread and bacon.
▪️Any little combination of whatever we had around that week.
For dinner we have any of the things on this site such micro tacos, a grilled ham and cheese sandwich, a jalapeno popper burger, etc.
We never ate lunch during keto; we definitely were never hungry enough to eat 3 meals per day. We only ate breakfast and dinner on the days we weren’t fasting. We fast Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday are keto. On our fasting days we have ¼ of our normal intake, which equates to roughly 300 calories for the day. On these days we still drink diet soda, water flavored with Crystal Light, and flavored sparkling water.
Here is our personal grocery list & kitchen items (including Costco):
What do you avoid?
We avoid carbohydrates (mostly); that’s all! If the Italian sausage I buy has a gram of sugar in it, I know it will not affect our weight loss so I pay no mind to combing through ingredients labels.
Simply put, we follow ketosis. The definition of ketosis (from webmd) is as follows:
▪️What is keto?
Ketosis is a normal metabolic process, something your body does to keep working. When it doesn’t have enough carbohydrates from food for your cells to burn for energy, it burns fat instead.
What about sugar alcohols? Don’t they stall you?
We do not avoid sugar alcohols or anything that has been said to “spike insulin levels” or “stall” you. In fact, I use them very often, and we have had no problems. We know there are any number of reasons the number on the scale could potentially reflect numbers we don’t like. Thankfully, we have not needed to monitor our insulin levels, but if you do – I would highly recommend listening to your healthcare professional. ☺
Those who do avoid sugar alcohols without the medical need to, claim that they “kick them out of ketosis”; however, they are most likely claiming that due to the results of ketone urine strips which are not for people in nutritional ketosis, and do not provide any information in regards to weight loss. They are for diabetics to ensure they aren’t going to go into diabetic ketoacidosis, which is not an issue for those with normal insulin function.
Links for reference:
Do you measure your food?
I only measure food when I’m baking a recipe, as there is quite a difference in the outcome between ¼ cup of almond flour and 1½ cups when you’re making cupcakes. Other than that, we do not micromanage our bodies to the degree of weighing out exactly 2 ounces of chicken for a serving. We know our bodies are not that precise, therefor we don’t need to be, either.
How do you track your macros?
In the spirit of not micromanaging our bodies, we don’t track anything other than net carbohydrates (and really it’s just “eyeing” the carb value) and staying below 20 net carbs per day. My boyfriend is a programmer and created a program for me to input the macros on the ingredients we use for all our recipes, so I can generate and provide that information with our recipes to those who do track everything.
Total Carbohydrates – Fiber – Sugar Alcohols = Net Carbohydrates
*Some people will say “if it’s over x grams of sugar alcohols, you can only subtract half“, or “you can subtract these specific types of sugar alcohols, but not all of them”, etc., etc. – and other variations of micromanaging. As I’ve stated, it’s completely up to you how you choose to live your life; your eating habits are no different. We choose to subtract all sugar alcohols…and it appears to be working in our benefit. ☺
How have you stayed keto for so long?
Willpower, self control, and temptation are nearly nonexistent factors for us anymore once we realized that almost any of your favorite foods can be converted to low carb with a few simple substitutions. There are certain foods you love that you will just not be able to replicate, and those are the ones you save for special occasions.
Do you have cheat days?
In two years, we have done a lot of experimenting to find what works best for us.
▪️We had real cheat days (Welcome to CarbTown, USA kind of cheat days) – that worked…in the beginning.
▪️”Keto” cheat days, where we only ate keto food – but enough of it that it was no longer low carb.
▪️No cheat, pure keto 2 meals a day x 7 days a week. This worked fine for us in the beginning, but that was when we had a lot more weight to lose. Now that we were getting lower and lower, we couldn’t keep eating the same amount of fats/calories and have the same results we were having, even without cheating anymore.
So we re-evaluated.
▪️I have wanted to do 23:1 (23 hours fasting, 1 eating) and my boyfriend said “It’s dangerous, your body needs nutrients throughout the day.” After researching to prove his side to me, the only things he found were benefits. One of the methods people chose was fasting every-other-day. What worked for us is eating 2 keto meals (breakfast and dinner) Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday are “fasting” days where we eat ¼ of our normal daily intake in calories, which for us equaled roughly 300 calories.
▪️I’ve been wanting to kick it into high gear recently and these past 3 weeks I have been keeping with the “fasting” days of only 300 calories; the only difference now is I have been skipping breakfast on “eating days” – so I’m ultimately doing 23:1, and every other day is only 300 calories for dinner. My boyfriend still has breakfast on eating days.
I dive much more into our “keto/keto fasting/intermittent fasting” experiences and stages, which can be found here.
What types of exercises do you do?
We are very anti-working out, just for the sake of working out. Luckily, we live somewhere with an amazing transit system and great bike paths, so we decided to live a car-free lifestyle. If it’s bike-able, we bike it; even to Costco. I also use a standing desk at work, so instead of sitting – I stand (dance, sway, fidget) for at least 8-10 hours a day. We also take the stairs whenever possible instead of the elevator; it’s actually quicker than waiting for the elevator, and it’s healthier. ☺ We definitely get our exercise in, but naturally; we don’t make a point to go to a gym, pay for a membership, buy workout videos or equipment, etc. We simply lead healthier lives, overall. If you live in a city where you can’t, or you simply don’t want to give up your car – totally fine! Park in the furthest parking spot from the store, instead of trying to get one as close as possible. Even the littlest bit of activity can only benefit you.