What do LeBron James, Busy Phillips, and Halle Berry have in common? They all attribute their fab physiques to the keto diet plan, a high-fat, low-carb diet that is currently blowing up the internet. According to Google Trends, the keto diet peaked in popularity in 2018, being the most search health-related topic.
There are 9 million #keto posts on Instagram, more than 69 million keto diet recipes on Pinterest and even a new “holiday” coined National Keto Day that occurred on January 5th. As the ketogenic diet becomes more mainstream, I wanted to send along some tips from Bulletproof to help readers get a kick-start. See below for what you need to know about the keto lifestyle.
How to Do Bulletproof Keto 101…
- Skip the carb refeed day. Limit your carbs and Increase your fat even more. Look at every meal as an opportunity to pile on the fat. You want 70–85% of your calories from fat, every day. Find a percentage that works for you.
- Power through “keto flu” for the first two weeks. If you’re tired, achy, have trouble sleeping, or get brain fog at first, ride it out for the first two weeks. Your body hasn’t figured out what to do with all the fat you’re giving it. It’s still looking for sugar. It’ll make the switch to fat-burning within two weeks of you going keto. In the meantime, you may not feel your best.
- Track your ketones. Urine strips can be useful for cyclical keto, but they aren’t sensitive enough to be helpful if you’re doing a fully ketogenic diet. Get a blood ketone meter instead. This nova Max strip is cheap and reliable.
- Watch for hidden carbs. In keto, every gram of carbs matters. Watch for hidden carb sources like Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cashews, chocolate, leeks, and other Bulletproof foods you might not suspect are higher in carbs. You can use a food tracker like MyKeto for the first little while, to get a feel for how much fat/carbs/protein you’re eating. See what combo gets you into consistent ketosis on your blood meter, and go from there.
- Don’t go too high on protein, either. A common mistake people make with keto is eating tons of meat. If you get above 20–30% protein in your diet, your body will start converting it to sugar through gluconeogenesis, which will take you out of ketosis. Do moderate protein, drowned in butter or a high-fat sauce of your choice.
- Follow the roadmap: The Bulletproof Diet Roadmap is the best place to start if you’re unfamiliar with the diet or if you’re looking for an easy reference to the best foods for your body.
Easy Keto-Friendly Snacks to Get Started…
· An Easy Coffee Fix: One keto mainstay? Coffee made with grass-fed butter. No time to brew and blend? Choose a ready-to-drink option like Bulletproof Cold Brew Dark Chocolate + Collagen Protein. It’s already done the work for you — saving you some time, and making things easier. Especially in the morning.
· Keto-Friendly On-the-Go Bars … That Taste Like Dessert: “Keto-friendly snacking” often means kale crisps, broccoli spears or pork rinds. But what happens when you crave something sweet? Indulge in a Bulletproof Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Collagen Protein Bar. Try all five delicious flavors, and find your favorite. Then, put one (or several) in your backpack, stock them in your desk drawer or anywhere else that you’d like to keep a snack.
· Stay Hydrated: One common side effect of a keto diet is dehydration. When your insulin levels drop on a low-carb diet, your body retains less sodium and water, making a keto diet slightly diuretic. Stay hydrated with plenty of water, and reload on electrolytes with bone broths, especially during the “keto flu” in the first few weeks of your diet.
· Alcohol Intake: Alcohol is not Bulletproof or ketogenic, but if you’re going to drink, stick to hard liquors in moderation. Beer (y’know, liquid bread), wine, and mixed drinks are bombs of hidden carbohydrates.
· Carb Timing: Stick to eating carbs at dinner, or even after dinner. Starting your day with carbs will spike your blood glucose in the morning, which sets you up for a yo-yo effect throughout the day. Instead, stick to fat and protein for stable energy throughout the day, with your carbs at night. You can actually make the post-carb energy crash work to your advantage if you time it so you get tired right around bedtime.
· Carb Quality: Choose high-quality starches like sweet potatoes, yams, carrots, pumpkin, and butternut squash. One caveat to the “no grains” rule is white rice. Because the lectins have been processed out, white rice tends to work well as a clean source of carbs, even if you’re healing from digestive issues or are sensitive to grains.