One year ago, I decided on a whim to research the ketogenic/low carb healthy fat way of eating. I didn’t look horrible, feel terrible, or have an awful self-image- I just wanted to find another way to live the next several decades that would make me the strongest for the longest.
I vowed early on that I’d never act my age, and always wanted to be one of the moms that DID things, and not complain about various aches, pains, fatigue. While I’ve never turned down a roller coaster, a hike, a sledding trip down the floodwall, or a trampoline party (and never plan to), I WAS starting to feel these things a little bit more than in the past.
I immersed myself- and continue to do so- in the latest research and benefits to getting rid of added sugars, processed foods, seed oils, and grains. I learned about cholesterol and what it really is, and what it really does. I learned about inflammation and how foods influence our pain levels. I’ve learned a lot more about horticulture and ruminants, and how much misinformation there is out there about impact to our bodies and the environment.
I’ve always had panic/anxiety disorder, coupled with OCD (no compulsions, thankfully), but, have had that under control for many, many years with a low dose of Zoloft. While I continue on with my low dose, my mental clarity and happiness is higher than its ever been, as well as my sense of wellbeing. The ketogenic way of life has had a positive effect on my mind.
I’ve always had Restless Leg Syndrome, and for about 5 years have had that controlled somewhat through medications- insomuch that I don’t go days or weeks with only 2-3 hours of sleep per night. Ketogenic eating hasn’t cured that, but, my iron and ferritin levels continue to rise- when those are low, RLS is worse.
More than anything, though, I feel healthier and stronger than I’ve ever felt- even when I was running marathons. I feel younger than I did ten years ago. I’m 48lb lighter. I can do push-ups.
I hear a lot of misconceptions about this way of eating- and, I will agree that there are some fad programs out there that play on this way of eating and become dangerous diets. That said, I neither miss nor crave things I couldn’t live without before that were making me sick- like breads, crackers, pasta, sugar, rolls, twix bars, and on and on.
One of the greatest misconceptions that I hear is that I’ve eliminated a whole food group (carbs). I do keep my carbs under 20g most days- which means, my carbs come from leafy greens.
Do I always stick to it? Nope.
Does my body let me know when I’ve gone off track? IMMEDIATELY.
My food selections these days include: Beef, pork, chicken, fish, bacon, sausage, eggs, cheese, almonds, pecans, avocados, green peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, asparagus, zucchini, squash, spinach, onions, mushrooms, heavy whipping cream, butter, dark chocolate, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, bourbon, tea, coffee, and many, many other things.
This has become a lifetime journey for me. I continue to read, research, listen to podcasts, and change my perspectives as needed.
The woman on the left wasn’t unhappy. She wasn’t wholly unhealthy yet, either.
But, the woman on the right- she’s stronger and happier than ever.