Well.. a few weeks have passed and I’m feeling pretty amazing.. not gonna lie. Ok, well, except for that massive headache I had two days ago. It was just as bad as when I first started Keto. I think I pushed my intermittent fasting a little too much.
The idea of intermittent fasting is that one tries to have one open window a day where no food is consumed for 12-16 hours. It might sound extreme but it’s more like, finish dinner at 7pm, don’t eat the next day until 7am. For some, they get so ‘keto adapted’ (primarily using fat molecules for energy instead of glucose) that they don’t feel hungry until lunch time. I tried that the other day and a) probably didn’t drink nearly enough water that morning or b) I’m just not suited for a 16 hour fast. I’m down with that. I like breakfast anyway! The overarching idea is that without insulin in your blood being raised often, you are less likely to snack and truly are aware to then eat when you are hungry / need calories and not need to feed the insulin blood glucose!
A lot of information out there for the keto diet is male-centric. There are no ideal parameters for either female or male however a lot of the information out there is biased towards men. That being said, I’m awaiting my next period with extreme curiosity (mostly trepidation) because my hopes are that my hormones & IBS will be mitigated by this monitored diet change (plus herbal medication and supplements as given to me based on my symptoms by my Functional Medicine Doctor).
I was speaking with a friend of mine about how to approach speaking about my dysmenorrhea on the blog and she reminded me that women need more information online about it. To eliminate the taboo of speaking about periods is pretty important in our opinion because periods are such a clear indication of health and, hell, 50% of the fricken world HAS (or will / has had) THEM.
Back to my keto diet reform, I’m no longer scared of how it may limit my enjoyment of food. I actually feel like I have MORE freedom than on a Whole30 or anything an allergist / health practitioner has suggested I omit from my diet. I’m finding that dairy doesn’t affect me nearly as much. I had no idea that there was a concept that one can be carbohydrate intolerant. It makes sense that dairy would aggravate me if I coupled such a high fat food with something high carb (pizza anyone?). LATTEES FOREVER! It’s wild.
So now that I am slowly eating more dairy and finding my limit with that, I am curious to try something with gluten in it again.. so long as I don’t eat more than 30 grams of net carbs in a meal. This means that my main worry (trying food I cook for clients or for recipe development) won’t be an issue so long as I don’t exceed how many carbs my body can take. Food freedom, ya’ll.
I also have gotten over any orthorexia fears because of this. I initially felt as though I needed to be extremely diligent and not have an OUNCE of refined sugar, grain, potato in my body. Having keto sticks at my disposal, I can measure my body’s reaction after eating a bite of cake or some battered food and make sure I am still in ketosis. I don’t measure it after every meal if I don’t consume anything too carb heavy.
I have also been listening to some good Keto podcasts and a lot of them always have an encouraging message to not beat yourself up if you eat something you’re not ‘allowed’ to. I’ve really been self aware when it comes to how I speak to myself about food to make sure I’m not approaching this dietary change with self hatred or perfection.
This podcast was really good at addressing the fact that women have been marketed diets their whole lives, a lot of which have rules to follow. It’s great for those who are interested in making any dietary change that has been prescribed for your health without feeling pressure on oneself to be perfect following it. Be patient and do it gradually for maximum success! The only ‘rule’ I would suggest is to eliminate negative and self destructive language about ANYTHING you eat or are thinking about eating. Easier said than done but there are more and more educated women speaking about the concept of Food Freedom.
What has been that one habit or food that you've come to peace with or have struggled with your relationship with.