Keto Meal!

Looking for a keto friendly meal replacement shake that actually fits your macros? Enter Keto Meal by American Metabolix.

I have trouble eating more than once a day and hence, really struggle with meeting my protein goals. I have had trouble with my hair falling out because of it. Keto really suits me as I am only hungry in the evenings, but overall health is just as important to me as weight loss. I have been looking for a product to help me meet my protein goals, but that tastes good as a stand-alone shake. I think I’ve found the holy grail, people!

It packs 210 calories, 18 grams of fat, 11 grams of protein, 4.5 carbs and 1.2 grams of fiber! It is absolutely divine for when you don’t have time to make a meal or just want to skip a meal but need something to satiate hunger. It mixes up smoothly with no clumps and tastes A-M-A-Z-I-N-G !(vanilla cake mmm!!) It has ingredients you can recognize too. American Metabolix really got this one right.

If you are like me, and need something quick to help you reach your protein goals, and you want something filling, this product is the way to go! Head over to the American Metabolix website and use code AMY20 to save some serious $$!!

I highly recommend!

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Featured post

Welcome!

Welcome to My Big Fat Keto Life! I’m so glad you chose to join me as I embark on my keto quest to lose 100 lbs! I’ll be sharing tips and tricks along the way, as well as delicious recipes. So kick back, relax, and enjoy the journey!

Featured post

Weight Update!

ONE-derland is near! I am finally down to 206. I struggled in October, and here’s some stuff I learned.

Tracking your food is important. My weight loss majorly stalled in October, and that’s because I tend to be a lazy ketoer and don’t like to track my food. What I learned is this is important, in order to assure you are being true to yourself and what you’re eating. As I looked back over my logs, there were many days I was very near to 50 carbs, even though I was only eating keto approved things such as nuts and veggies (and meats of course). I was also overdoing the fats in my coffee as I discovered cocoa butter and became obsessed. I’ve said it before, but even though keto is a “high fat” way of eating, if you have body fat to burn, you don’t want to overdo the dietary fat. In the last week of October, I really reigned in what I was eating, lowered my fats, stuck to strict one meal a day intermittent fasting, and that’s when the scale started to move. I’ve lost just about 10 pounds in the last 2 weeks alone. Lesson learned!

Recipe Time: Keto Jalepeno Poppers!

Many of you may already know how to make these, but when I think of jalepeno poppers, I tend to think of the breaded kind (which you can’t do on keto unless you use pork rinds as breading…hmmmm…). I find these to be even more satisfying than their carby cousins, and they are super easy to make!

When you are in the mood for a poppable, sorta spicy snack, these certainly fit the bill!

Ingredients:

4 jalepeno peppers (let them “ripen” a bit and get more wrinkly if you like em spicy!)

4 ounces of cream cheese, divided into half ounce portions

8 slices of bacon

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Cut the stems off of the peppers and halve them. Pull the seeds out and rinse them.

Next, take your portioned out cream cheese and “stuff” each pepper with a half ounce.

Finally, wrap each halved, stuffed jalepeno with an entire slice of bacon and place the cream cheese side up on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Bake in the oven 20-30 minutes (depending on the thickness of your bacon).

Try to let them cool before devouring…that cream cheese gets molten-hot!

Macros for two of these delicious firecrackers (2 halves, one full pepper) come to 264 calories, 23 grams of fat, 12 grams of protein, 3 grams of carbs.

Yum!!

Recipe Time: Keto Pancakes!

I was off my game a bit today folks. I am, by no stretch of the imagination, a professional or trained chef. I’m just your average gal who makes home cooked meals for the fam. I struggled with these “pancakes” today – the first two flipped so ugly it’s not even funny. So please excuse the fact that these aren’t ultra pretty. This is real life!

I love these pancakes. I don’t like to use the nut flours much, so these contain none of that. Consequently, they do come out a bit more crepe-like than pancake-like (thinner rather than fluffy) but they fit the bill for me. They are savory, even with the addition of sweetener. I think they kind of taste like French toast depending on what you put in them.

Let’s get started!

Ingredients:

3 eggs

3 oz cream cheese

1 packet of Truvia (or sweetener of choice)

1/2 tablespoon of cinnamon (or pumpkin spice, or spice of choice)

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend. In my Ninja I don’t have to use softened cream cheese, but depending on your blender this may be a necessary step. Once combined the batter will be frothy. Let it sit for about five minutes.

In a preheated pan, add a pat of butter (or cooking medium of your choice) and add your batter. Just like conventional pancakes, once your bubbles pop (and it looks like it’s solidifying on the top), it’s time to flip. They take 3-5 minutes per side.

You can top them however you’d like, but these are so tasty, I think no syrup is required!

Macros on these bad boys (for the entire batch) comes to 514 calories, 41 grams of fat, 24 grams of protein, and 6 carbs. It yields about 5-6 pancakes. And yes I eat them all (but you could share if you wanted…)

Enjoy!

Wild Foods Bone Broth Protein Powder

My Wild Bone Broth Protein Powder is here! This is a product I was extremely happy to find and try. As previously stated, I don’t think supplements are really necessary, as long as you eat real food. However, I did run into a snag on my keto journey…hair loss.

I do intermittent fasting and it is natural to me to eat one meal a day. I just don’t get hungry. But I had started noticing that my hair was falling out more than usual. At first I suspected my thyroid, as I do have hypothyroidism, but when I got my blood tested my levels were normal.

I love to read about keto and watch keto videos on YouTube. I always learn something new. I happened to come across a video talking about hair loss and its cause being inadequate protein intake. I am more of a lazy ketoer, meaning I don’t really track my macros, but after a couple days of food logging, I discovered I was falling really short of my 94 grams of protein goal (there are a few keto calculators out there that can break down your macros for you, or you can just do .8 grams times your lean body mass).

I went for a few days trying to increase my protein intake, but I really just can’t eat that much food in one meal! I even tried two meals a day, but even that I was having to force. So I went on the hunt for a keto friendly protein powder.

This is not an easy task. Most protein powders are full of crap, and even though I am slightly more lenient on some things in my diet, there are certain ingredients I just won’t do. Plus, most protein powders are far too high in carbs. I only allow carbs from greens and nuts as part of my daily intake.

(Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with Wild Foods. I purchased the product with my own money and the opinions that follow are solely my own.)

So I went back to Wild Foods’ website and found they had two products with protein in them: collagen peptides and bone broth protein. I decided on the bone broth protein because it has 20 grams of protein per scoop. It also has no carbs!

I was so excited when it came today! It is unflavored so I decided to try it with the Cocotropic (see my Wild Foods Haul blog post for a review of this product) coffee, cocoa butter, coconut oil and cream. It blended really well and made the mixture even more foamy than usual.

It is in fact unflavored…it didn’t make my drink take on any new flavors that I could detect, but it did seem to mute the cocoa flavor of the Cocotropic. I probably won’t mix it with the Cocotropic again because I do like the hot cocoa flavor of that beverage. But I would feel extremely comfortable adding it to coffee without worrying about it taking on any weird flavors.

Overall, as with the other Wild Foods products, I am impressed. No harmful additives, completely carb free and 20 grams of protein per serving? Yes, please! This product is a keto dieters dream if you struggle with getting in your protein like I do. Go check ’em out over at wildfoods.co!

Wild Foods Haul

I’m not a huge fan of supplements. If you eat real food, and plenty of greens, they shouldn’t be necessary on keto. I am, however, a sucker for all natural products. I don’t buy many organic products, because, frankly, I am a real person on a budget so I can’t afford all that wonderful grass fed meat. I will occasionally splurge if I can, and one of my favorite YouTube-ers drinks his morning coffee with Wild Cocoa Butter and I must say, I was intrigued.

(Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with Wild Foods. I purchased these products with my own money and the following opinions are solely my own.)

I have never seen cocoa butter for sale at any of my local stores. I am extremely rural, so the only big box store remotely close to me is Walmart (and even that’s 45 minutes away), so I’m lucky I can even buy coconut oil. Since I had seen the Wild Foods Cocoa Butter on video many times, I knew I had to try it. So I finally went to their site, wildfoods.co, found their organic cocoa butter and promptly added it to my cart after deliberating over what size to get (I got the 8 oz). I had also seen they carry Himalayan pink salt, and as previously stated I can’t really get that in any sizeable quantity anywhere, so I just had to get that too (I got the 16 oz).

Now of course I browsed through their site while I was there. They only sell high quality, organic products. They also are very keto friendly, and they have a preassembled keto box you can buy with some ingredients for bulletproof coffee. Among the items in that box was a product called Cocotropic. It has high quality organic cocoa, Maca, turmeric, changa, and reishi mushrooms in it and says it improves mood and concentration. I was intrigued, so I pulled the trigger on a 4-ounce bag.

My box arrived within two days (awesome!) and when it got here I was struck by how cute their packaging was!

I pulled everything out and immediately made a lovely bulletproof coffee. The cocoa butter comes in wafers, and three of them is a tablespoon, so I added the equivalent of two tablespoons of cocoa butter (I was making 30 ounces of coffee). I tasted a little too, and it is super smooth and creamy, and tastes vaguely of cocoa. Next I added a tablespoon of the Cocotropic and a few pinches of the Wild Pink Salt. Lastly, I added two tablespoons of heavy cream. I placed everything in my Ninja blender and blended it up. The finished product looked chocolatey and foamy!

I sipped it. I expected a mocha taste but it was shockingly like hot cocoa. I might tweak it and add some Truvia – that might make it more like a mocha, but I liked it as it was. The cocoa butter was rich and velvety and gave the cup a lovely creaminess. It was also chocolatey. Delicious.

Now, if one were to prick me I’m almost certain coffee would flow out instead of blood. I drink a ridiculous amount of coffee every day. I do not get any stimulant effects from coffee. But when I finished my cup, I found myself feeling energized.

One of my favorite things about keto is the mental clarity you get. Carbs make me very foggy compared to the focus I have on the Keto Diet. Imagine my surprise when I finished my bulletproof coffee concoction and I felt clearer, more focused, and just overall better.

I realized it had to be the Cocotropic. I could hardly believe I was feeling a difference from that product. I tried it again the next day, and after finishing it, felt the same effects. Now I’m hooked!

Research the Wild Foods Company for yourself. Their philosophy is awesome. I am a big fan of real foods, and this company is right up my alley.

I have been struggling with hair loss, and due to only eating one meal a day and fasting frequently, I realized I was not getting enough protein. I can’t eat enough food at one meal to make up the difference, and I don’t like the idea of synthetic protein powders (nor can you find one compatible with the keto diet anyway!). Enter Wild Bone Broth protein. I just ordered it this week and will review it as soon as I get it!

Seriously, check this company out. I highly recommend their products, especially the Cocotropic!

To Exercise or Not to Exercise…

Does the thought of working out make you feel woozy? Me too.

So the question is: should I exercise on my keto journey?

Unfortunately, I think the answer is pretty vague. It depends.

Stories abound of people who lost serious weight on keto without so much as looking at a dumbbell. They sat happily munching on their bacon while others literally ran by, all the while burning off their fat by eating only fat.

The diet and exercise mantra has been so engrained in our brains that when I did keto back in 2014, I let my husband convince me I needed some form of exercise for my weight loss to continue (nope! You don’t, not on keto). My chosen punishment? Running.

You know what? I liked it. A lot. I wasn’t fast by anyone’s standards, but I looked forward to the “me time”. It made me feel good to know I was doing something good for myself. Of course, once I fell off the diet train, I tumbled off the exercise train. Head first.

So should you exercise? I say, if you feel like it, definitely you should. Exercise is certainly not necessary, but good for you none the less.

Do you want to maximize your fat burning? Do you have serious weight to lose, like 60 pounds or more? Do you want to do it quickly? Then definitely you should exercise!

Fat burning can be maximized in many ways. I’d say step one is to begin with intermittent fasting. By skipping meals, your body will literally have no choice but to burn fat for fuel, in other words, your body’s own fat. But don’t begin intermittent fasting without being keto adapted (read: don’t start IF within days or even a few weeks of doing keto) or you will be hangry. Not a typo.

Once you’ve adapted to intermittent fasting for a while, you’ll probably be feeling pretty good. Especially once you’re down 30-40 pounds or so. You will find that you have loads of energy and that you feel really clear headed and have a sense of well being. It is once you are at this point that I would recommend exercise if you feel that you want to.

Exercise and intermittent fasting: a potent pair indeed!

So you’re deep in your diet. You’ve been eating good solid keto meals for weeks. You’ve been intermittent fasting for 16 or more hours a day and you’re feeling good. You decide to hop on that treadmill and walk. Here’s what you’ll feel: you have energy for days. You feel strong, like you can do this for hours. Here’s what’s happening in your body: having no glycogen to fall back on for energy, your body continues breaking down your fat (if you haven’t eaten recently) but it does it at a faster pace, as you are expending energy and your body demands more. What does all this equal? Bigger results!

Should you exercise? I certainly recommend it if you want to lose weight more rapidly. I have 100 pounds to lose (30 down already, in just two months!) so I want to see that scale move! I am feeling really energetic so I have jumped back on that treadmill. Not running yet, but we will get there.

I have also started lifting some free weights in an attempt to lower the odds I will have loose skin on the backs of my arms. I don’t know if it will work, but I’m giving it the old college try. I’ll keep you all posted with that one.

You’ll have to decide for yourself if exercise is right for you. This is your journey, and you can do it however you like. There are plenty of people out there who have lost 100 or more pounds without ever exercising, (Ally Mcwowie on YouTube for one) so it is certainly not a requirement. But if you feel so inclined, rest assured you are doing something good for your body and your soul, as well as mobilizing more of your body’s own fat!

Temptation: When Your Family Doesn’t Do Keto

Keto is hard. Getting through the initial few weeks is tough enough. Once you become fat adapted, it gets easier for sure, but what if your family still eats bread, pasta…all manner of other forbidden foods?

Welcome to my household. My husband and older son still want real pizza, potatoes, rice, you name it! And sometimes their wants can transcend through my keto no-craving brain. Sometimes the pleasant memory of a food can lead to temptation.

For the most part, my family will just eat what I cook. They are big fans of pork chops, steak, pork loin, beef roast, etc. Every now and again, however, they will want something different like pizza or spaghetti. With pizza I’m out of luck – either I make some fathead dough and make my own low carb pizza, or I’m stuck trying to cook dinner for one (I keep chicken thighs frozen in single portions for just such an occasion). With spaghetti, I just cook the meat and sauce separately and roast up some zucchini slices to use as “pasta” (I don’t have a spiralizer sadly), then cover my zucchini in sauce and meat and mix the rest in with their pasta.

Nearly every dish can be made keto. Unfortunately it’s a bit of extra work, and sometimes you’re cooking what almost amounts to two separate meals. Just like anything else, if you really want it, you’ll find ways to adapt. A little creativity goes a long way.

I tried to feed my husband and son a fully keto meal, with pork chops as the main dish and bacon wrapped asparagus and zucchini as the sides. They ate it happily, but after the meal was done, both had intense carb cravings and said they missed the potatoes. They didn’t realize they were craving carbs but both went for a sugary dessert, my husband resorting to an entire bowl of peanut butter Cap’n Crunch! Based on this response, I’d say converting them to keto is a ways off!

It’s not perfect. One night I wanted to dive into the bowl of buttered white rice I made for them. Rice was one of the tough things to give up for me so it makes sense why I struggle with it still at times.

How do I cope? I think this time around I was really ready to change. I have committed to keto as a lifestyle choice, not just a diet. Just like being successful at quitting cigarettes means you have to truly be ready to let them go, to not give in to temptation you have to truly commit to making it a lifestyle choice and not treating it as a temporary diet that can sometimes be “cheated” on. I also have the benefit of having been down the keto road in the past, and I know that if I give in to sugar or grains for just a second, it starts a feeding frenzy with me that gets progressively worse.

I am doing this for my health. I am doing this for my kids. I am doing this to save my life.

Am I tempted at times? Yes. But I know I have a choice, and I don’t eat those forbidden foods because I choose not to.

Weight Update!

Finally broke the “second decade”! Finally down to 216. Clothes are fitting more comfortably, jeans I couldn’t get into before are fitting, and I have tons of energy and feel very clear headed. That’s one thing I definitely love about the keto way of eating: I feel really great!

Here are some things I’ve learned: alcohol causes you to stall. Like a lot. Even if you’re drinking “zero carb” alcohol. I knew that alcohol “pauses” weight loss because your body will burn through the alcohol before it can resume fat burning, but even just having a drink or two a couple times a week caused me a huge two-week long plateau. I’m sure not everyone would be affected this severely, but it definitely caused me to lose some precious weight loss time.

Another item I don’t seem to be able to tolerate: berries. Berries are supposedly ok due to their low glycemic impact, however I have to believe these contributed to the plateau. I was also having a square of 86% dark chocolate every now and again and I think this also didn’t help. I seem to be really sensitive to sugar. Some people can deal with small amounts of added sugars, but due to my extreme insulin resistance, I am not one of them. This may heal with time but for now, I must eliminate all sources of sugar.

One last take away is eat cheese in moderation. I was munching on cheese “chips” a lot during this time, and I think this also contributed to my stall.

Lots of good takeaways, but I sure am glad to be back on track and seeing some progress on the scale! Until next time!

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