Going Keto Without Messing Up Your Hormones

IMG_1047.JPGMy plan to how I am going to follow the keto diet, while still prioritizing my hormones and stress levels

Two years ago I lost 20 lbs by drinking less, going to the gym on a regular basis and being more strict about not eating grains. I have been dabbling with paleo eating since 2009, but often go through phases where I become lazy and less careful about what I’m eating. I slowly start to slide into non-wholefoods and find myself shoulder to shoulder with my coworkers munching down on the open box of donuts. I eat better for a week or two, and then get stressed out about not having any food in the house after work, and then eat popcorn until I can’t move from the couch. It’s not anything to get stressed out about, I’m human and as such, we all can make the wrong choices when we aren’t being mindful. It just means that it’s time for me to shake things up and dial back in my diet.

My Drivers for Change (aka: why I am going keto):

  • Looking to recalibrate my eating habits.
  • Tired of experiencing reoccurring headaches in the afternoons and evenings.
  • Hoping to reduce my mid morning hunger that often distracts my ability to focus at work.
  • Unhappy with how often I feel bloated and tender after eating.
  • Wanting to get my eating patterns set before winter and holidays start.

Keto is something that I’ve played around with before, but have never drove in all the way on. My hormones are easily thrown off balance, and I’ve always assumed that going full keto would wreck complete hormonal havoc. After listening to Leanne Vogel’s podcast, and reading her boo, where she describes the need for carb-ups for women of reproductive age, I am on board for giving keto a real try. My plan is to go full classic keto for three weeks, eating a ratio of 75% fat to 20% protein to 5% carbs. During this time my body should go into ketosis and begin burning fat as energy. To help keep my hormones in balance, I am not going to restrict calories. The goal is not to lose weight in these weeks, but instead to become a fat burner.

My Course of Action:

  • Prepare. Clean out fridge. Create meal plans. Cook and buy keto snacks and foods.
  • Track. Use the free app CarbManager to track all food that I eat for the first two weeks.
  • Fat Adapt. Eat classic keto for 3 weeks to get, and stay in ketosis.
  • Fat Fueled. Eat keto with weekly carb-ups to stay fat adapted, but keep hormones happy.

After 3 weeks of classic keto, I’ll experiment with adding carb-ups weekly at first. Carb-ups are times when you eat 15% more carbs instead of fat. Leanne recommends having carb-ups in the evenings, so your body can use the carbs to heal and restore at night, which also allows you to sleep through any sugar crashes. I am hoping that adding carb-ups will help me sustain a keto diet without having any disruptions in my hormones.

I will be posting updates on my progress, so stay tuned! If you would like to follow along also, please post a comment or send me an email to connect!

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