Frequently Asked Questions about the Keto Diet

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I regularly recieve messages from readers asking me about the keto diet (through which I've lost 45 lbs., reversed my diabetes, and just generally got a whole lot healthier). A few questions come up again and again, so I think it's time to answer them right here on the blog.

Q: Can you recommend a place to learn how to do the keto diet?

A: I do the original keto diet, also known as theraputic ketogenic. It's perfect for diabetics and others who need to control medical problems. I eat 20 grams total carbs per day. Some people who claim to eat keto count net carbs (carbohydrates minus any fiber in the food). Diabetics should not do this because all carbs affect blood sugar. Some people claiming to eat keto eat up to 30 or maybe even 40 carbs per day and still lose weight - but if that kind of keto diet isn't working for you (you're not losing weight or you have mad cravings for carbs), do yourself a favor and stick to 20 grams or less per day, total. It's do-able - and not even very hard.

For more details on what the keto diet is and what to eat while on it, click here.

Q: How can I tell if I'm in ketosis?

A: Ketosis is a medical term that means your body is burning fat, and therefore making ketones (a chemical all of us have in our liver). The keto diet is named for this process, which is integral to its health and weight loss benefits.

But truly, don't worry about ketosis. Don't waste your money on ketone test strips, either. They aren't all that accurate, with results varying according to hormones, how hydrated you are, or even how long you've been eating keto. If you're eating 20 total carbs a day or less, YOU ARE IN KETOSIS, or very soon will be.

Q: Can you recommend some sites that show the science behind the keto diet?

A: Start with 23 Studies on Low Carb, Low Fat diets, for an understanding of how wrong those diets are. Then go here to read a little about scientific studies supporting keto eating.

If you are diabetic (type 1 or type 2), I also highly recommend the educational files over at the Reversing Diabetes Facebook group.

Q: Where can I find keto recipes?

A: There are some right here on this blog! (And I'm sure I'll be adding more.) I also keep several keto recipe boards on Pinterest. (Currently, I have over 600 keto recipes pinned).

A lot of people want me to recommend a keto cookbook, but honestly, most of them are awful, containing recipes with way too many carbs.

I do think Kristie Sullivan (of YouTube's Cooking Keto with Kristie) has some brilliant, very loww carb baked goods recipes - but they should be eaten only occassionally. I have Kristie's Journey to Health cookbook, and while I like the baked goods (and the pork rind pancakes - sounds awful, but trust me, they are great), I really haven't liked any of her savory dishes. They are much, much too rich and dairy-dependant for my family.

About a week ago I ordered The Everyday Ketogenic Kitchen, and I can truly recommend it. Check out the author's blog All Day I Dream About Food to sample her recipes. I love them!

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