It has now come and entered our grocery stores!!  It’s….KETO BREAD!!!

And guess what….it tastes….like BREAD!

I looked at the ingredients, and it looks very similar to what normal bread is.  I’m confused how they reduced the carbs this much.  Years ago when I did Atkins, they had some products online, but I heard one of those online stores got busted for making false claims.

 

 

Each piece is 6 net carbs!!  It’s 14 total, with like 8g of fiber.  For those of you doing total carbs rather than net carbs, keep an eye on it.

I can tell you there are people out there that have been told “you aren’t doing keto if you have more than 20g a day.  That’s sort of malarkey.  I’ll go into “keto” a little below for any newcomers that saw the bread.

So the object of the keto diet is to….get into ketosis.  There are a lot of benefits claimed by being in ketosis, and I can tell you, if I have a big meeting or something coming up, I’ll drop the carbs by a few to get into deep ketosis and I do feel more sharp.  However, I’m trying to lose weight, not be a jedi mind trick champion.  I want to enjoy life, and I want to burn my belly fat that remains.

Folks, you don’t have to have 20g of carbs.  Let’s look at what more or less defines “low carb” which I saw with Phinney and Volek….

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What this will show you is “generally” speaking, the upward limits of a “well formulated” ketogenic diet has you in a range from 20% carbs/10% protein to zero carbs/30% protein.  Essentially, low carb.  The paleo and primal people (my off ramp) have an upper limit of somewhere around 30% carbs and 35% protein.

The primal people tell you that if you want to lose weight, drive down the carbs and go into keto for a month or three.

I’ve also heard – “have as many carbs as you can get away with”.

Generally speaking for me, most days my upper limit is somewhere around 50 net carbs.  I say net carbs because the erythritol in my coffee is 4g per teaspoon, and I use a decent amount of that.  It doesn’t touch your blood sugar or insulin, and has had zero effect with me on keto.  Some days, I might jack up the blueberries or have a little more dark chocolate and hit 75g.

One thing is though, I move a lot.  If you are not moving off the couch, for whatever reason, probably stay closer to 30 net carbs.  What happens is after a 2 hour long hike, a hard bike ride, a tough run, or weight training – I may deplete some glycogen stores.  When I have those extra 5 or 30g of carbs, they are being shuttled to my muscle glycogen stores.  The fruit (fructose) and any sugar I do have (sugar is sucrose, which is 50% fructose and 50% glucose – High Fructose Corn Syrup is 55% fructose and 45% glucose), need to be dealt with in the liver.  Generally speaking, this may temporarily slow down ketosis, as your body will burn liver glycogen prior to burning its own fat.  But I move a TON.  I also have been in on the keto diet for 14 months now.  My body has built all the machinery it needs to burn all of the fat on my body.  Occasionally, if my carbs might even inch up to 75-100, maybe for a few hours or a day I’m out of ketosis while my liver processes the extra carbs.

Or, those extra carbs get turned into fat…but I’m burning fat, so it will be oxidized soon.

My point is this – if you ever read Atkins, it tells you to start with the 20g of carbs per day to initially get into ketosis.  As you get into ketosis, the next step is to become “fat adapted”.  This is where your body starts building all of the machinery to burn your body fat.  The longer you low carb, the more mitochondria you are building to burn fat.

In the initial 1-2 months, you are losing a lot of water and fat because your body is not efficient at burning fat yet as a fuel source.  It’s like bought a muscle car that runs on body fat and it’s getting 8 miles per gallon.  It needs to really chug through that fat initially.  But your body is really smart.  Over time, it re-designs itself.  And guess what, burning your own body fat as a fuel source is much “cleaner” than your sugar-based cars.  You end up with a solar powered car that might get 300 miles per gallon with virtually no emissions.  Your sugar burners are the 22 mpg cars which emit a lot of pollutants.  It is CLEANER on your body to use its own fat.

Lastly with this point, I do OMAD and IF.  When you’re on keto, your appetite is under control after about a month.  You start to play games about how long you can go without eating.  Imagine you are driving cross country.  With a 22mpg sugar burning car, you need to stop at gas stations all the time.  With my solar powered 300 mpg fat burning car, I may only need to stop once or twice for fuel.  I might have a 1 hour eating window most days, and it’s HARD to eat 2,000 calories in an hour, if you are eating healthy foods.  Fats are higher in calories, but between that and protein, it’s HIGH SATIETY.  You cut out all of the shit processed foods, and suddenly you can go very long periods of time without eating.  I now fully understand how our ancestors 5,000-100,000 years ago ate.  It’s how my body was designed.

 

With that all being said, people still have a hard time eating FAT to lose weight.  And, while I’m telling you there is a keto bread, I’m still going to caution you that this is a PROCESSED FOOD.  I bring it up not for all of you to eat 6 slices a day, but this can be a crutch to help some of those adapt to a keto lifestyle easier.  And – have a “cheat” meal while still staying under 75 or so carbs for the day.

For example, my wife has seen my results and has dabbled a little with keto here and there.  She’s liking my dark chocolate and peanut butter.  She likes the French fries I made (more on that below).  But she misses her French toast, her 2PM on the weekend salami sandwich with cheese – and well, she misses bread products.  I’m going to advise to her to eat it, but no more than 2 slices a day.  For me, I would use that maybe 2 slices on a weekend or the like.  I don’t NEED bread products anymore.  I have built substitutions and I CRAVE whole food products.  I have removed a lot of the processed shit from my diet, and that processed food destroyed my dials and alerts when I was full.

So – I am saying that this is a godsend, but it can also be a trap.  So be VERY careful with this, and use this sparingly, if at all.

Cheat meal

I believe I probably hit 75g of carbs yesterday, maybe 85 at most.  I’m still in ketosis.  I don’t go up this high every day, but after I hit my goal weight of 185-190, I plan on going to about 100-150 per day with adding some more fruits like apples and tubers like sweet potatoes.  I miss fruits, and I do eat berries.  But many of you will pound fruit or fruit juices and “fruit is healthy!!”  Fruit is made of fructose, and your body can really only process about 1 serving of fruit per day with the liver.  Anything more than that, and your lovely bunch of grapes just turned into liver fat.  Ever hear of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease?  Yeah, it’s a thing these days.  So many people are eating tons of fruit and gaining a paunch and not even realizing their 4 servings of fruit per day are turning into 3 servings of fat.

So with my cheat meal, I wanted to change things up from my giant salads I eat ALL the time.  With that car getting more efficient to burn 300 miles per gallon, I’m also speculating that the same 4-5 foods I was eating, my body was also becoming more efficient at burning them.  This is a thing that I haven’t read about or seen, but would explain a lot of my life.  I was a picky eater, and with this, I would eat the same damn thing for months on end, essentially eating 5 different things.  Maybe cereal for breakfast, spaghetti for lunch at the school cafeteria, and 2 fat free hot dogs and buns for dinner with spaghetti Os.  It was a low fat diet, about 60-70% carbs – and would hit somewhere around 1800 calories per day.  I’d exercise a LOT.  And I would GAIN WEIGHT.  People don’t believe me.  Ask fat people about spontaneous weight gains.  It happens.  I can tell you that I would eat the SAME THING.  Months on end.  Scale would go up.

The name of the game I’m betting a hand on is variety.  When I started keto, I was trying all kinds of different recipes.  I then got dialed in to things I like, were easy to prep, and I’ve been eating them over and over and over.  I also did a 3 day fast right after Thanksgiving – and since then, my body has been slow to drop fat.  Part of me wonders if that is some sort of defense mechanism.  Up until that point, for like 5 months straight I was dropping 6-8 pounds per month.  Since then, it’s been slow.  I did it for the autophagy, but wondering if that triggered some sort of primal instinct to hold on to fat.

Don’t know.  N=1 and the only thing I think I can do now is to change it up a bit.

So I made up one of my KeDough pizzas along with French fries.  The KeDough pizza is pretty damn easy to make, you can find it on YouTube here.  On top of the pizza, I added some bacon, pepperoni, and some ground beef along with the cheese.  It is the best damn keto pizza you can make at home.  The wife and I only could eat half of it together.  It’s extremely filling.  Lots of protein and fats.  I forgot to take a picture of the whole pie because I was doing 8 different things, but it was a work of art.

I also made up French fries with the professional cutter we have and then soaked them for 40 minutes, dried them, and coated them in olive oil.  About 350 in the air fryer for 30 minutes, and about halfway through, toss them so some don’t get overdone where others look less done.  Here’s what my pizza and fries looked like!

 

 

Earlier in the day, I had my chicken thighs and cabbage.  There’s not a lot of fat in this.  The cabbage is higher in carbs, and the chicken thighs are about 1 pound of chicken.  So if you look at the fancy chart way above, I may have hit my limit for protein for the day by noon.

What happens to the extra protein?

I’ve seen reports on this all over the place, as some people day it won’t turn to sugar unless it’s by demand.  Most others are saying it converts to sugar.  In my experience, I am strongly leaning towards it converts to sugar.  It’s not easy to do, but your body will convert protein to glucose (blood sugar) through a process called gluconeogenesis (GNG).  So, one of the downfalls of the Atkins diet was Atkins didn’t really account for this.  It was a LOW CARB diet only.  The keto diet is described as “low carb, moderate protein, high fat”.  Whatever the hell “moderate protein” is.

So you had 50g of carbs for the day, right?  Well…it might be a bit higher.  That pound of chicken thighs I had will come out to be maybe 100g of protein.  From what I’m seeing, the Primal people recommend .5g of protein per pound of lean body mass per day, where I’ve been targeting .6.  So what happens if you have 1.0?  1.6?

I think on heavy lifting/exercise days, you’re fine.  What has happened to me several times, is on heavy days of 2-3 hours of exercise, I’ve smelled “ammonia” emitting from me.  These were also days I may have dialed up the protein a bit.  This ammonia is a byproduct of the body converting that protein to glucose and was emitted during the exercise.  This told me that the body was using the “sugar” from the protein I consumed as a preferred fuel to my own stored body fat.

From what I’ve read, protein converts to sugar in a 3 to 1 ratio.  So potentially 30 extra grams of protein not used may convert to 10g of extra carbs for the day.

So you had 50g of carbs to stay on keto, but you ate 160g of protein rather than 100g of protein?  You may have then had 70g of carbs for the day instead of 50.

Keto is confusing to many, which is one reason why the failure rate is rather high.  People also expect 8 pounds of fat loss per week, and when they hit 2-3 weeks of no weight loss, they say, “it doesn’t work” and go back to their breads.

The truth of keto is….is that it’s low carb, MODERATE PROTEIN, and high fat.  The fat can be eaten off of your plate or off of your waist, your choice.  Earlier on, you eat a lot of fat on the plate, but as you go on, you can dial back the fat on your plate and allow your body to get it from the tire around your waist.

What Atkins missed was that people may have a tendency to eat a chicken breast with their salad and might not eat the chicken thigh or drumstick – which has a lot more fat, smaller portion sizes, and you don’t need a ton of protein.  We inherently know chicken breast is “healthier” than chicken thighs.  But that might not fit your daily goals.  Switch it up.

Progress

I’ve gone through a month of losing 1 pound.  Wohoo (insert sarcasm)!  Well, it’s a little more tricky than that.  The month before, I went from 231 down to 225.  YES!  Well, my numbers were all jacked up.  Meaning, water weight was down.  So the scale had me 6 pounds less, but it was a lot of water weight.  I want FAT LOSS, not water loss.  So this past month, I only lost ONE pound, but the WATER weight is back up.  So – in 2 months, it was 7 pounds of fat loss.

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That is about a pound of fat a week over the last 2 months.  Or, about a 500 calorie deficit, per day.  I know it’s frustrating for some people to not lose 26 pounds a week like they do on The Biggest Loser, but the truth is, your body doesn’t want to let go of fat.  It’s a survival mechanism.

I’m now at 28% bodyfat!  If I can keep my 160 or so fat free mass (which I’ve been at for about a year straight), this will put me at 26% (military number) at 216, 20% around 200, and 15% around 188.  Google what body compositions look like, and I’m happy with 15%!!!  Might try for 12-13% just for vanity purposes, but it looks like 188 is my end goal weight.

This means I now have 36 pounds to lose to hit my end goal weight with a BF of 15%.  If I lose 6 pounds per month (let’s hope!)….

End of March – 218, close to my 26%

End of April – 212

End of May – 206

End of June – 200 (20% – and I usually go to the beach for a few days in beginning of July!)

End of July – 194 (I have my first sprint tri August 3rd or so)

End of August – 188

So – I don’t expect my weight loss to be that linear.  However, when it gets warmer out, I’m walking the dog every day, I’m biking 4 times a week, and I’m just a LOT LOT more active.  So I would expect the numbers to be slightly lower for March/April and slightly higher May/June/July/August.

My 3 year anniversary of starting this project?  End of August.  This would have me at 188 pounds with 184 pounds of weight loss!!  (Ideally, the goal is to get to 186 with 186 pounds of weight loss and write a book called “Half the man I used to be!”)

But I digress….

Additionally, you need to understand your waist measurements because sometimes that scale is pesky and just doesn’t move how you’d like.  Your body is continuing to improve its composition when you are on fat loss protocols.  for me, I feel a great result has been the “fasting Fridays” I do 2-3 times a month.  This also helps essentially create a weekly caloric deficit.  I believe also that with this autophagy, THIS is what is helping shape me very nicely.  In times of OMAD and fasting, the growth hormones and testosterone elevate.  Your body is also EATING itself.  Hence, autophagy.

Years ago, I use to do the 1200 calorie crash diets.  I think many of you still do them.  You see 5 pounds on that scale lost the first week and you start doing the math until you are thin.    The only problem to your math is that the body doesn’t want to lose 5 pounds of fat per week.  It tells you to slow the hell down, makes you tired, pulls calories from vital systems, and even makes you sick in order to slow you down.

For those calorie in/calorie out people – you might advocate having a guy eat x number of calories per day.  Why?  Because you start writing out the math – and you determine that:

  1. His body is burning 2200 calories per day through fancy equations
  2. His exercise, movements, and other things may account for another 1100 calories burned
  3. Therefore, his TDEE (total daily energy expenditure) is 3300.  If I just recommend to him to have 1800 calories per day, he will lose 2.5-3 pounds of fat per week!

The problem is, the body doesn’t work like a math equation.  Trust me, I tried 1200 calories a day a LOT of times.  If your 1800 calories per day loses 2.5 pounds, wouldn’t 1200 then equate to 3.5 pounds per week?

What happens is your body will self regulate if you cut too many calories.  It will slow down item one above.  Your speech will slow down.  You won’t think as deeply.  Your body starts to conserve fat.  Your blinking will even slow down.  Your BMR may adjust from 2200 down to 1600 and you may never know.  all of the boundless energy you used to have to cook and exercise in item 2 above disappears.  You hit the couch instead of the gym.  What workouts you do have are draining.  You don’t recover.

The first month I had a professional trainer, my BMR came up as 2850 per day.  That stunned me.  Never knew that before.  She told me, “eat 2850 calories per day of 40/30/30”.  The first month I think I took off 12 pounds!!! With eating 2850 calories per day?!?!?!?

What kind of voodoo science was she pitching?

Well, pull up a seat folks.

If you want to lose weight, target your BMR for calories.

“But don’t I have to create a deficit?”

Yup.  And we will do it in the gym.

You may have read items 1-3 above.  Re-read.  What I want to do is give you enough calories so your body doesn’t slow the hell down.  If you’re slow blinking and slow talking, it might be signs you are eating too little.  If the fancy print outs tell you your BMR is 2300 calories, eat 2300 calories a day.

What is somewhat fuzzy science is item 2 above.  Most estimates I see are roughly to add .4 to .6 times your BMR to then add to this to get your TDEE.

For example, if your BMR is 2000 and you are walking, working out, taking walk breaks at work, going to the gym routinely, add .5.  If you are sedentary, maybe go to .3.  If you are working out an hour a day, maybe go to .6.

For simplicity, use .5.  So if I have 2000 calories as a BMR, it would then stand to reason my extra workout, walking, cleaning, and getting the mail calories equal about 1,000.  This means your TDEE would be 3000.

To create a deficit – eat your BMR calories.  In the above example, it would create 1,000 calories per day deficit.  Or, 7,000 calories in a week, or 2 pounds of fat loss in a week.

The BIG problem with calorie math is someone like me may have damaged my BMR over years of crash dieting.  The fancy calculators may say that my BMR is 2100, but in reality, it may be closer to 1600.  My “extra calories” may calculate out at 1050, but this may be closer to 700.  So the person who never really dieted may lose 2 pounds per week of fat, and I may lose 1.

This is why we need to experiment for ourselves.  Those calorie in/calorie out guys cannot tell me with any real precision how many calories I’m burning a day based on calculators.  What they would have to do is:

  1. Observe a ton of expensive measurements
  2. Feed me a precise diet of calories over a period of time
  3. Re-measure me for changes, then do the calculations

In the above scenario, they would then be able to determine my TRUE BMR.  In all of the calculations you find online, they are approximations.  Some of you may be listed at 2200 BMR and are actually burning 2700.  Those are the “twig” guys who can eat for days.  Others may be listed at 2200 and only burn 1600.

So – all of this is to tell you to work the process.  Make adjustments after a month of observation, don’t change things up daily because you obsess about the scale.

I’ve also started taking waist measurements 2 months ago to help me out for my military aspirations.  I am taking 2 waist measurements because I’m not sure which they use.  I have a “belly button” waist measurement and then the largest circumference around my waist.  Because I still have some belly chub, measure 2 is a few inches higher than measure 1.  But over the last 2 months, both of these have gone down several inches.

In conclusion here:

  1. Fat loss is the goal.  Not water weight
  2. Experiment to find your BMR and TDEE.  The calculators are estimates of best guesses.  Do NOT use the scale alone, because your water weight will vary.  Do NOT cut calories below your BMR, or if you do, don’t do it by much.  Fasting for a 42 hour fast may be far superior than cutting your BMR calories.
  3. What calories you do eat, cut out the shit, or minimize it.  When I went to 40/30/30 at 2850 calories under IIFYM, I had a HARD TIME eating those calories.
  4. Try to create your deficit “in the gym”.  While you may burn 30-40% more than your BMR with minimal activity, this is where you will have the fat stores tapped.  Walking and hiking are stress reducers, tap the “fat zone”, and are very low stress on your joints.  Consider walking/hiking a lot at the onset of a weight loss program rather than traditional “cardio”.  It might seem boring, but you are BLASTING fat with this while building lean body mass – which will boost your BMR.
  5. Do not make the mistake I did, dozens of times, and kill calories TOO much.  EAT REAL FOOD.  EXERCISE.  ENJOY LIFE.
  6. No one is perfect.  Not even me.  I strive to be 90-95% successful.  Occasionally, I may go over my calories for the day.  Or carbs for the day.  On weekends with lots of activities, I may eat 3 times  and have 3,000 calories.  I don’t care.  I do better the next day.  In weight loss, it’s about the long game.  Not 5 pounds a week.  It’s about getting knocked down at times and getting up stronger.  Learning lessons.  Building a plan that works for YOU.
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