Last month I wrote about my ketogenic diet experiment and I’m back again today to tell you how my second month went. Short answer: Even better than month one!
Last month I reported a whole long list of improvements to my health, so I wasn’t sure it would get any better. But the second month I saw even more improvements in a variety of categories.
- Steady energy and improved stamina. Due to injuries sustained in a car accident last year, I hadn’t been able to walk far without experiencing severe hypoglycemia, fatigue, and pain and swelling in my legs. I’ve been walking 30 – 40 minutes every day, plus I was able to complete a 7 mile hike (no elevation gain – but that will come later!).
- LOTS of energy and motivation. I used to watch TV and movies online for hours everyday because of lack of energy, but now I don’t want to. I have so much energy and my mind is so clear that I’ve begun reading books for pleasure, for the first time in forever. As stated above, I’m also walking daily and overall, being very active. This fits with Gary Taubes’ (and others) theory of weight gain causing lack of energy and activity and as opposed to the other way around. Once I supplied my body with adequate energy (FAT), I want to be active. I need to be active. It makes me think about the hamster in the cage running on the wheel… I’m active now because it feels good, not because someone tells me I should.
- Blood pressure continues to be normal; and it’s now the lowest of my life
- Reduced heart rate. My resting heart rate was always in the 80s, but now it’s in the high 60s.
- Very soft skin, clear skin. I did have a few break outs early on, but this is a normal part of weight loss (as is temporarily elevated triglycerides and cholesterol) as your body detoxifies all the stuff that has been trapped inside your fat cells.
- Athlete’s foot fungus cleared up. I’ve had athlete’s foot on my left foot for almost 10 years. It is all gone now. My feet and heels are soft now.
- In touch with feelings and learning healthy emotional regulation skills. While I thought I was in touch with my feelings in the past, I now recognize that I often turned to food, sugar, and carby foods to numb out or comfort myself. Now I’m learning how to experience feelings in a healthy way. I’m choosing alternative activities, like reading, walking, etc.
- Calm, peaceful feeling. As part of learning to experience emotions in a healthy way, I’m being more mindful of each moment. I’m not in a hurry any more and just enjoy what I’m doing in the moment.
- Weight loss of 29.5 lbs (18.5 lbs lost month one, 11 lbs lost month two)
- 6 inches total off my waist
Sample menus – What do you eat?
One of the first things anyone asks when I tell them I’m eating very low carb, high fat, is, “What do you eat?” I still keep things simple, like I did last month. For each meal, I start with about 20-25 grams of protein (meat, eggs, fish, etc.), add 1-2 cups of “above ground” veggies, plus 1-2 tablespoons (or ounces) of fat (butter, cheese, cream, etc.). Here is a sample day’s menu from month 2:
- Cold brewed coffee with heavy cream, 2 scrambled eggs, 1 cup spinach, 4 strips of bacon
- “Sandwich” made with sliced turkey, provolone, mayo, mustard, and sliced bell pepper
- Grilled steak with loaded mashed cauliflower (butter, cream cheese, cheddar and bacon crumbles)
I originally committed to myself that I would try this for at least 3 months, so I’m 2/3rds there. However, with all these improvements, I really don’t see myself quitting after 3 months. I see myself continuing to eat similarly, perhaps beginning to incorporate and experiment with a few recipes (which I will begin posting here).
See you again next month for another update. I wonder what improvements are still to come?