You may find it hard to believe that a nutritionist who specializes in keto, and who herself has followed this way of eating for over two years, would tell you NOT to follow a keto diet. But, here I am, breaking all of the keto rules, as usual.
Please, please, please do not follow a keto diet. Following a keto diet will not work for you.
There’s one word in those sentences that is very powerful over us women, and no, it’s not “please.” It’s that terrible, manipulating, four-letter word, DIET.
Just thinking about how many times that word has come out of my mouth in my life makes me cringe. How many times I let it take over my life, my thoughts, and my happiness; how much havoc that loaded word wreaked on my delicate female body. For many women, there’s no other word in the dictionary with as much power, influence, and persuasion over our minds as the word diet.
And, it’s because of the power this one word has over us as women that I DON’T recommend following a keto diet, or any diet for that matter, ever again. This insanity over our food choices needs to end. The manipulation, fear, control, out-of-control, restriction, labeling, calculating — it all HAS to stop. This mindset around food is making us crazy, stressed, nutrient-depleted, sick, and obsessive, which all hurts every fiber of our beautiful female beings.
If you follow a keto “diet,” you will only cause more harm to your body. You will get further away from your goal — your reason behind going keto in the first place. You’ll create an even worse relationship with food and wedge yourself even deeper into the diet culture.
DIETING IS DANGEROUS
Back in 2016, when I started teaching keto to groups of women, it was still a relatively new concept for many ladies. Since then, it has rapidly gained popularity and is currently having its shining moment. At first, I was thrilled to see such a powerful, healing lifestyle gain that kind of traction.
But now, as the momentum has continued to grow over the past few years, I can clearly see that this “diet mindset” has infiltrated the keto space and taken over what SHOULD be used as a health protocol to heal the body. It’s frustrating and scary for me to watch.
Instead of just sitting back and watching the destruction, I’m speaking up! I’m taking the opportunity to shed light about the dangers of dieting within the keto community and working hard to promote a healthier, balanced approach for women who want to implement a keto lifestyle.
WHAT IT MEANS TO HAVE A DIET MINDSET
Does any of this sound familiar?
Eating all of your favorite foods over the weekend because your new diet starts Monday.
Labeling foods as “allowed” or “not allowed.”
Being afraid to eat certain foods. (Remember the fat-phobic craze?! Now, we have a carb fear.)
Pulling out your phone at dinner so you can look up calories or macros and track what’s on your plate.
Having a “cheat meal.”
“Earning” your food.
Weighing and measuring everything you put in your mouth
Easily being able to rattle off the calories and macros of the food in your fridge.
Eating less food when you feel fat, bloated, or to make up for the “bad” weekend.
I know all of these scenarios far too well because it’s how I lived for the majority of my adult life. I was a perfect dieter. I kept mini notebooks in my desk drawer where I could write down everything I ate for the day complete with calorie and macro counts. (This was before there were apps for that!) I could tell you exactly how many carbs were in a ½ cup of brown rice and how many calories were in my bowl of Kashi cereal. I would be “good” all week so that I could have a “cheat” meal (read: day) on the weekend.
I didn’t know it back then, but I had fully bought into the “diet mindset.” Like, take-all-my-money-and-everything-I-own type of buy-in. I fully believed that living this way would be my ticket to weight loss, my perfect body, and dream life.
Which is just what the diet industry wants us to think.
A diet mindset is brought on by the diet industry, which wants us to believe that to be healthy and happy, you need to be thin. And to be thin, you need to control, manipulate, and reduce your food intake. The diet industry makes billions of dollars a year by instilling this unattainable, unrealistic message. And yet, we believe it, no questions asked.
Those with a diet mindset believe that restricting the amount or types of food will lead to weight loss and that thinness is necessary to be healthy, attractive, happy, and/or successful.
HOW THE DIET MINDSET INFILTRATED THE KETO SPACE
Of course, as soon as the keto diet started gaining popularity because people were seeing weight loss results, diet mindsets lit up all over the world! There was a new, never-tried-before, diet that would make it possible to lose the weight once and for all. There were the success stories to back it up too, proof that it really worked…
…as long as you followed ALL the rules, only ate these foods, NEVER ate those foods, eat less, skip meals — you get the idea.
And, just like that, a powerful healing protocol turned into the diet industry’s next target.
Let’s all take a second to remember that the ketogenic diet was first developed as a treatment for epilepsy in the 1920’s. It is now attracting research in the treatment of neurological disorders like Alzheimers and dementia. It has been shown to reverse hormone imbalances in women with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). People are able to get off medications for diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol after following a keto diet.
And yet, these important findings have gotten lost in the keto madness because, “Hey, this keto thing might make me lose weight.”
For me, a keto lifestyle helped me reduce my chronic inflammation, detoxify my very toxic body, build new mitochondria, balance my hormones, dig me out of adrenal burnout, improve my sleep, and stop my 15 years of obsessive dieting.
Yes, keto helped me STOP dieting.
STOP DIETING, START KETO
I started keto when I was at the lowest of low points in my life. I was dealing with the repercussions of toxic mold exposure which left me feeling pretty terrible most days. I was desperate to feel like myself again and get my life back.
So, I set out on my keto journey with that being my one and only goal. For the first time in my life, I was approaching a change in my diet with the sole purpose of gaining health, not losing weight.
Over the course of two years, my wish was granted, and then some. I reached a level of health I never knew possible. I had gotten my health and life back and had put the diet mindset to rest once and for all.
A DIET AND A LIFESTYLE: THERE’S A BIG DIFFERENCE
How did I make this mindset shift? I approached keto as a lifestyle change, something I was going to be doing for the long-term. I needed to find ease and enjoyment with it. No rules, no restrictions, no perfection. Just following my intuitive sense as to what would bring me back to health while also keeping me happy and my body satisfied.
I had the need and desire for health over weight loss. I wanted to nourish, heal, and restore my body, not stress it out even further by dieting and restricting. This approach is why I reaped so many benefits from keto and why the women I work with heal their bodies too.
Following a lifestyle instead of a diet means:
- Having a bigger, bad-er goal than just changing the size, shape, weight of your body. (Think health gains.)
- Not following the rules, restrictions, meal plans, macros, and food lists that someone else has determined to be the only approach to keto (If you see someone that does this, run in the other direction!), but instead finding out what works for YOUR unique body and circumstances.
- Understanding that you’re in this for the long run and it should be enjoyable and sustainable.
- Approaching food as a means to nourish and fuel your body, not something to restrict and manipulate.
- There are no “yes/no,” “good/bad,” “on/off limit” foods. Food is just food, no other labels needed.
- That you’re not always going to be perfect and that’s OK.
Whether you haven’t started your keto journey yet, or you’re already in the trenches, take this advice and get rid of the diet mindset, ignore the claims from diet culture and the diet industry, and take the lifestyle approach to keto so you can change your health and life for the better.
If you’re ready to learn more about shedding your deeply ingrained dieting habits and living a healthy keto lifestyle, come to my FREE online workshop! I’ll be chatting LIVE all about why keto doesn’t work with a diet mindset and what needs to change to finally get the results you’re expecting.
Already know you need to make the shift, but want some expert guidance and support along the way? I got you covered!
Join me and over 1500 women in the Fat Burning Female Project and learn how to get your body into a healing ketogenic state safely and effectively. Once you’ve spent a few weeks there, you’ll then learn how to sustain it for the long-term with ease and intuition, ensuring that diet mindset has no room to creep back in.
No calculators, apps, or percentage calculations required. Just you and your desire to heal your body and live life to the fullest. Get started now.