Tough Love for Newbies and really anyone else



I’m new on the forums, but keto’s been in my family for quite a while now. This post is gold, as far as I’m concerned.

I have one brother who was tired of not being fit (and in poor mental health). Keto came with a decision to change, and he’s stayed on for years now. Never asked if it was hard, but I supposed extreme low budged eating may have been very boring.

My mom did more whole food low carb than keto, to be able to fold her body in two again to tie her shoe laces. And whole foods are healthy.

Another brother is on keto because it turns off mental health problems. He has been chronically underweight for years, no amount of carb could help him. Now, several months after starting keto, he is finally getting some subcutaneous fat on his body. And his risk of developing diabetes despite low weight is gone as well.

My daughter is doing low carb to get better concentration in school. Non-expected side effects keep her going. She has way better skin, teenage flab disappeared (lucky her, to have a still healthy metabolism), and she has a much more positive outlook on life. The tighter figure is really only a nice bonus to her.

I’m also low carbing, primarily keto. My reaaon is to avoid the creepibg risk of diabetes. It’s a scary thought that metabolic syndrome happens long before diabetes is diagnosable. I likely have some degree of metabolic syndrome, due to constant snacking and bread, and proven by only losing weight on keto or extreme calorie restriction (only done accidentally, loss of appetite). My primary goal isn’t weight loss, but rather to stop running towards serious illness. I’m also noticing how nice it is to be able to “snack” on herbal teas insteas of sugar. I don’t even want a couple almonds at work, and can keep going an entire day on only tea and water as long as I stay fasted. That’s helped me in several stressful situations lately.

Even if I don’t drop another pound (I am overweight) in the next year, I’m still going to stick with keto and only occasional non-sugar carbs. My body depends on me to give it real food.

(Jennibc) #22

My 17 year old son, not overweight today, but was chubby at age 8 and having some mental health issues when he was younger, is dedicated to this way of eating because he has found 1) he has clearer skin than most teenagers, 2)his face is more angular and his jaw looks stronger without carbs 3) his little love handles that he had even when he was skinny at 14 are now gone. So vanity is what is keeping him on track, but he also admits that the sustained mental focus he has and ability to get his work done (he used to have ‘ADD’) is a great benefit and another reason to keep sugar out of his life.

(Bacon is the new bacon) #23

Love this. We get so focused on keto for losing fat, that it’s important to realize this is actually a weight-normalization diet, from whichever direction.

(Eric - I am a onelander!) #24

@awlaelo This is a great post and may help your friends that are struggling or impatient.

(Kirk Wolak) #25

I could NOT have said it better, and will not try.

There is only ONE wrong way to do KETO… The way that causes you to give up!

There are Seasons for Artificial Sweeteners. There are reasons to break (my birthday was a huge break, and I gained 8lbs overnight). I lost it all in the 3 day fast that followed! I planned ahead. The price of a CHEAT MEAL for me is DAYS of fasting to recover. And it takes almost a week for my blood numbers to recover. except if I add MANY MILES of walking… (Thanks to Tim Ferris on his squats to deplete the excess glycogen idea)…

So, like you, I will cheat on a quarterly basis. Good enough for me. And I will limit it, because I NOW KNOW the price I have to pay afterwards. I always have a plan, and BECAUSE past dieting failures always started with Falling off the wagon, and NOT GETTING Back on (wallowing in self-pity over how quickly the pounds came on, so I might as well enjoy a longer break… Stupidity, LOL)

Here’s to everyone finding a variation of a diet that works for them. I am carnivore, and Bacon is my vegetable!


I think it’s just as important not to assume someone is “new” to keto if they are a new member. The media and current plethora of material out there may be contributing to the sudden influx of keto craze(perhaps at its superficial levels). I was working with a coworker on a particular project one month ago and he claimed to be doing keto. Two weeks later when I met up with him again, he was not eating keto at all and said that he did keto in the morning but was looking forward to (insert regular burger with buns/regular pizza/subs etc). I was puzzled for an instant at what he meant “keto in the morning” but realized he was doing part time keto which I knew from the start is harmful as the body yo-yos between different energy sources and ends up struggling with the increased fats. I agree that it’s a slow process. I also believe it’s a lifetime commitment and I wouldn’t live any other way.

I think what many of us also forget is that it’s a very personal journey and I second the poster above that there is really only one way to do it wrong: the way that causes you to give up. I also agree it’s largely mental make up and mindset. I don’t agree with being dismissive of any problems people have (not saying that anyone is!) and it’s important to support each other in a positive way. Just wanted to reinforce this. Maybe this thread will be tacked on the top.

I personally don’t really hang out much at the forums because there’s no reason to. Heck, I don’t even know how to keep tabs of the threads and 80% never return to the older threads not because I don’t want to but because the site isn’t easy to navigate (sorry). I very rarely find the same thread again unless someone else has posted there in the same moment I’m online. I’ve frequented in the past month of Feb to see what others are eating/recipes but not even the exercise/sports section has the sports I’m interested in. That’s fine. I still appreciate what many have to say. Hope everyone reaches their goals and continues on their paths. :slight_smile:

(Retta Stephenson) #27

Yup, same here for dealing with emotional/stress eating. Reminds me of a poster I made a few years ago. :wink:

(Cindy) #28

Not me! :wink: LOL, I actually didn’t weigh for the first 2 months because I knew I would probably be one of those people…so I avoided it completely. But I’m struggling a bit with empathy these days.

What’s using up my empathy is the whole scale thing. There is such a thing as being too strict in trying to achieve a goal that is as arbitrary as a number on the scale. For me, discovering keto was a way to “let go.” Let go of the rules about 3 meals a day, or a certain number of servings of fruits and vegetables, low fat, etc. My main rule for myself on keto is <20 g/day and even with that, I’m not beating myself when I go over that. I refuse to box myself into the whole macro thing, IF/EF, spin left, then right, tweak this and that…all trying to force the scale number to go down. Not sure how some of the (what I see as) obsessive behaviors in keto are any different then CICO when the goal is exactly the same. Sure, physically, keto will be healthier, but mentally? It can be more of the same if people are on the same hamster wheel, just of a different color. :frowning:

I didn’t read it that way…as in, he wanted to go back to SAD, but that he wanted to start adding in some more (hopefully healthy) carbs. I believe that keto is a healthy lifestyle. But I also believe that, for most people, eating an occasional sweet potato, having an occasional (small) slice of birthday cake, etc, is ALSO healthy. I’ve mentioned this before and even though I know some people can be addicted to carbs in the way an alcoholic can be addicted to alcohol (so 100% abstinence is needed), for MOST people, that’s not the case.


A few things suck up my empathy: newbies who put their entire self-worth in the scale, no matter how often they’re told that scales are almost worthless since they cannot differentiate between muscle and fat; newbies who obsess over peesticks and macros like SADers obsess over calories; newbies who are “frustrated” because they’ve “stalled” for a week; and especially newbies who think 10lbs lost in one month means they’re “doing it wrong.”

I try to be empathetic, because I know they do all these things because they’ve been told to or because of a deeply rooted insecurity society has put into them. But when they refuse to listen? I move on.

(CharleyD) #30

Yes, every year, it’s a new batch of the same questions.


This is why I go low carb. Preferably keto, but always low carb. I’ve made it my rule to eat meat, fish and vegetables only. Add some occasional berries, and don’t eat vegetables that taste like someone added a ton of sugar to them, like most root vegetables.

It’s too tiring to think about gaining or losing. Or counting calories. Though I have done that too, for family members, and the meals became so keto…


@Jennibc. Nice job of cracking the whip. I too preached discipline and determination several months ago and was fussed at for shaming people. Expectations often derail us as much as anything when they are not met. Realistic expectations — especially when it took most of us decades to get where we are/were — must be identified when going into such a WOE as Keto. It is Keto … not Kure-All.

But ketogenic eating does work to make one feel and perform better. Serious weight loss may take more IF/EF for many of us.

In addition, and while emotional eating is a big problem, just as big a hurdle where I live (southern Louisiana) is social and traditional eating. There are times and outings where you are expected to eat a lot and the temptations of Cajun cuisine are often mightier than the best prepared Keto Knight.


Thank you Jenni, I felt your post wasn’t really tough love, just love. Thank you dear.

(Eric - I am a onelander!) #34

All really good points. Decades and decades of metabolic derangement takes time to correct and some creative solutions. I started TRF and IF and lost more weight for a few weeks and stalled. Had to add EF. Might have to do something else in the future like give up diary.

Yesterday was a hard day. Oldest daughter was in a car accident. She is sore but otherwise fine. Not sure about her car. Father-in-law is out of the hospital but may be near the end. I stress at last night long past my eating window. Glad this morning my food choices were all keto. But still…

(Janelle) #35

I’m sorry for the stress. I hope it subsides soon and so glad your daughter is ok.

(Eric - I am a onelander!) #36

Thanks Janelle. Time usually heals some stress.

(Bacon is the new bacon) #37

I’m not a fan of changing language as a means of changing society (hint: it doesn’t usually work), but I’m noticing a lot of focus on the word “weight” in this thread, and I suspect that the use of that word reveals an ingrained habit of thought that is part of the problem.

Part of the scale-obsession we are seeing so much of right now is related to the fact that we have been trained to focus on our weight instead of on how fat we are. This use of “weight” for “fat” is a euphemism that serves no one. After all, our poundage (kilogrammage?) is irrelevant, if it’s the proper proportion of lean tissue to adipose tissue. I suspect, however, that most of us don’t truly believe that, because of societal programming.

So I challenge you, whenever you find yourself using the word “weight,” to consider what you are actually talking about. Is the discussion about the need to lose weight or about someone’s being too fat? The more we can correct our underlying habits of thought, the better off we’ll all be, and the more we’ll help the newbie stuck in the wrongheaded official guidance. All of us need to be on guard against our unspoken assumptions, because they will do us in, if we’re not careful.

These thoughts are aimed at myself, as much as anyone else. I still think in terms of weighing what I weighed in college, but if my 220 pounds were 90% lean tissue, I would have no reason to complain. My problem is not my weight, it’s that I’m fat, even after losing 60 lbs. on keto. There, I said it. Whew!

(Jennibc) #38

So sorry about the stress. I am glad your daughter is okay after the car accident. That is my greatest fear as a parent. Hang in there. It’s okay to slip one night, just get back on plan this morning.

(Jennibc) #39

Maybe changing language won’t change ‘society’ but the things we tell ourselves certainly change us for the better or worse!

(Ellen) #40

Sorry to hear that Eric, but glad your daughter is ok.