Are you thinking of starting the keto diet and feeling a little overwhelmed?
Don’t worry, you’re not alone!
Big changes in life (like completely changing the way you eat!) are overwhelming for everyone.
No need to worry though, I have gathered a few very helpful tips from other moms that were once keto beginners too.
These tips will help you feel less stressed, more organized, and are sure to help you transition smoothly to your new lifestyle.
What Is The Keto Diet?
The keto diet is a high fat, moderate protein, low carbohydrate way of eating. The goal is to get your body into ketosis which is a metabolic state where your body uses fat for energy instead of sugar or protein.
Although it has been used since the 1920s for people with hard to treat epilepsy, today people often choose to follow this diet for other health benefits.
Many experience weight loss, lower levels of inflammation, improved brain function, and lower blood sugar numbers. Some, like Dr. Terry Wahls, have even had great success in treating autoimmune conditions.
Common Issues Beginners Experience
When starting the keto diet some people may experience a few common symptoms, especially at the beginning.
Your body is transitioning from using protein or sugar as its primary energy source to using fat. So being prepared can go a long way in helping you feel deal with any symptoms and get into ketosis.
It is not uncommon for people to report temporary side effects such as:
- lack of motivation
- sugar cravings
- muscle cramps
- bad breath
This is what is referred to as the “keto flu”.
Symptoms are usually temporary and can often be helped by drinking more water, adding a mineral or magnesium supplement, and not restricting food intake.
In addition to preparing for the “keto flu”, there are other steps you can take that will help you find the right mindset and prepare so you can work on reaching your goals.
10 Tips That Will Help When Starting The Keto Diet
Here are 10 tips that will help make your keto journey just a little bit easier, especially in the beginning 😉
1. Research Information
Whenever you make a lifestyle change it is so important to read, research, and learn as much as you can. Not every diet or lifestyle is appropriate for every person so it is important to take the time to learn as much as possible before jumping in.
If you have any health conditions such as thyroid problems or adrenal fatigue, the keto diet may not be a good fit for you, so be sure to do your own research and talk to your health care provider.
Learning as much as you can will help you really understand the changes that are happening as you start the keto diet and empower you to take control of your health!
2. Clean Out Your Pantry
Ok, so you’ve decided that starting the keto diet is right for you, the next thing you need to do is take stock of the food in your house.
Check your refrigerator, pantry, and cupboards and take out anything that isn’t keto-friendly.
Because let’s be honest, if you’re starting the keto diet the last thing you need when you’re feeling hungry is a bag of potato chips that is tempting you!
By removing non-keto food you are greatly reducing temptations and will be much more likely to stick to your new lifestyle plan.
3. Ditch Sugar Substitutes
Eliminating soda and sugar can be really hard! But here’s the thing, diet soda is sweetened with sugar substitutes that are terrible for your health.
In fact, there has been research showing that our bodies react to sugar substitutes much the same as they do with regular sugar. Some even increase blood sugar levels, which is exactly what you don’t want on the keto diet.
Also, continuing to include sweet food or drinks will only increase cravings. One of the goals of the keto diet is to use fat as fuel and that is hard to stick to when you are constantly craving sweet treats.
So ditch the diet soda and sugar substitutes and opt for delicious, keto-friendly choices. Very soon you will notice your tastes have changed and cravings will disappear!
4. Invest In Helpful Equipment
One of the problems people tend to run into when starting the keto diet is not knowing correct serving sizes, which can lead to overeating.
It isn’t always easy to look at food and determine the portion or serving size, which is why some basic equipment is so helpful.
A food scale and measuring spoons are perfect tools for helping to keep track of serving sizes of different foods.
Once you get familiar with foods you eat regularly, you will probably be able to skip the food scale and measuring spoons, but until then, use them often!
5. Find Support
Finding support is so important! Changing your lifestyle isn’t always easy, but having others to talk to can make all the difference.
If you know someone that has mentioned the keto diet, reach out and see if they would like to join you on your new lifestyle journey. As keto buddies, you can help each other stay motivated and reach your goals.
Don’t know anyone in real life that is interested in trying the keto diet? No problem! There are Facebook groups, online communities, and you can even find local groups to join on Meetup.com!
6. Batch Cook
Making many meals at once can help you in a few ways.
First, you don’t have to think about what to make each day. When starting the keto diet (or any diet, really), it can be a little overwhelming to make a new recipe for each meal. And if you’re not used to cooking often it can seem like you’re in the kitchen all. the. time.
But, if you set aside one day each week to cook and prepare everything at once you can drastically cut the time that you spend in the kitchen and not have to worry about what to eat for each meal.
The second way batch cooking can help is by limiting temptation. If you know that there is already a meal made and waiting, you are much less likely to swing through the drive-thru on your way home.
Batch cooking does take time but the benefits of being prepared and reducing temptation are worth it!
7. Always Have Keto-Friendly Snacks
Sometimes making every meal at home just isn’t possible. So for the days when you’re busy and have no time to sit down for a meal, it’s so important to have grab and go snacks on hand (for you and your kids!).
A few examples of keto-friendly snacks for those busy days:
- hard-boiled eggs
Having snacks on hand will help you stick to your eating plan when you find yourself hungry and away from home. And as an added bonus, these snack ideas are great fuel for growing kids too!
8. Take A Look At Restaurant Menus
Eating at a restaurant can be fun, but if you’re trying to stick to a specific way of eating, it is essential to be prepared.
A great tip is to look at the menu before going out. That way you can take your time and look at options.
If you don’t know which restaurant you’ll be going to or don’t have time to look at the menu in advance, you can always stick to ordering easy items like your favorite meat, a salad with a vinegar and olive oil dressing, eggs, or veggies.
You don’t have to stop going out with friends or having a night on the town, you just have to do a little prep work!
9. Deal With Stress Effectively And Get Enough Sleep
It is important to deal with stress effectively and get enough sleep because stress hormones have a big effect on your body’s ability to get into or stay in ketosis.
If you are stressed or not sleeping well there are a few easy things you can do to help relax, get the sleep you need, and help your body stay in balance.
Here are a few ideas that could help:
- try bedtime yoga
- keep a journal
- add guided meditation
- make sure you’re getting regular exercise
Starting a new lifestyle can be challenging at first, be sure to take a little extra time to rest and recharge while you’re going through this transition.
And remember to be kind to yourself, you’re learning as you go!
10. Make Adjustments If Necessary
The keto diet has helped many people feel better, lose weight, and get healthier, but just like any diet or eating plan, one size does not fit all.
If you start the keto diet and notice after a few weeks that you are not feeling well, are not regaining your energy, or feel weak and tired, it may be time to consider making adjustments.
For a number of reasons, some women do not do well with very low carb diets and in that case, it is necessary to reevaluate. If you find yourself in that group, don’t feel bad, you have to do what is best for your body.
If you find yourself not feeling well you may want to consider alternatives like intermittent fasting, carb cycling, or adopting a low/medium carb diet (but not keto low!) and pairing it with whole foods.
One Last Tip For Starting The Keto Diet
Making a lifestyle change is never easy, so one of the most important things you can do is to think positively and focus on the benefits of taking steps to better health.
Because, after all, what your mind thinks, your body becomes.
By learning about the keto diet, finding support, taking steps to prepare, and keeping a positive attitude you will be well prepared to face any challenges and will feel a well-deserved sense of accomplishment when you reach your goal.
Good luck! You can do this!