The Ketogenic Diet Experiment

Those of you who have been following my blog for a while, know that I love to experiment with my diet and workouts. In fact, I actually consider myself to be an ongoing experiment in health.

The Ketogenic Diet Experiment by Tara Perillo

The Ketogenic Diet Experiment

In my latest experiment, I tackled the ketogenic diet, a very low carb (less than 50 grams/day), moderate protein, and high fat diet. The most common ratios for obtaining and maintaining nutritional ketosis is to consume your daily caloric needs with 5% carbs, 20% proteins, and 75% fats. For me, that included 21 grams net carbs (net carbs are total carb grams minus fiber grams), 85 grams protein, and 162 grams fat, with a total daily calorie count of about 1700.

Now, I think it’s only fair to give you a little background on my interest in the ketogenic diet. The first time I heard of it, was at PaleoFX. last year. Fact is, Dr. Sarah Ballantyne, gave a speech on the positive negative effects of the ketogenic diet, especially on women. I was actually talking with her about her speech, at dinner the night before. After listening intently to her speech, which included much compelling evidence to some of the dangers to women’s health, I pretty much determined it was something I would never try.

Flash forward almost one whole year later. By this time, I have put my lupus into remission, with help from the AIP diet, as outlined in The Paleo Approach, and a workout program, created by myself. I had also been experimenting with different macro ratios, in order to keep my fitness level progressing. In my research, I came across the ketogenic diet once again. This time, I reached out to the masters in ketogenic, low carb, and high fat diets. Hearing what they had to say, and reading up on their research, I decided to put aside my earlier fears, and give it a go. The ketogenic diet experiment began.

Tools of the ketogenic diet by Tara Perillo

Tools of the ketogenic diet

The first thing I had to do was get together all the items I would need to begin: keto urine strips, a blood ketone/glucose monitor and strips, a macro counting app (I like MyMacros+), a food scale, and lots of fats.

After calculating my proper macros (above), and beginning to follow the recommended ratio, it took me only four days to start producing trace amounts of ketones. I had tons of energy and mental clarity. Within a week, I had lost 2 pounds of fat. I continued to feel this way and lose weight for eight weeks. Then, I hit a brick wall.

Leaning out on the ketogenic diet by Tara Perillo

Leaning out on the ketogenic diet

One of the reasons I began the ketogenic diet was to help with some hormonal and skin issues that were lingering. My first period, while on the ketogenic diet, was completely pain-free. This was something I hadn’t experienced in years. And, I didn’t suffer from the horrible PMS symptoms I usually did. Unfortunately, it didn’t repeat with my second period. I also experienced some relief in my skin rashes, in the beginning six weeks. But then, those came back, even worse than before. All of the energy and mental clarity I had experienced disappeared.

To be completely honest though, I don’t blame the ketogenic diet. I know, after years of experiments and research, it’s just what my body does when I’ve been on any regimen for eight weeks. It’s actually the same way for many of you. Once your body gets used to a particular diet or workout program, it simply stops working at it’s ultimate level. That’s not the time to give up. It’s the time to shake things up a bit.

It was important to the experiment for me to remove some of the variables, to be sure they weren’t affecting my results. I stopped exercising for four days, and followed that with a week of decreased workouts. I also cut out or decreased some of the foods I had reintroduced, such as nightshades and dairy. These changes actually made my symptoms worse, not better. Trust me, I was happy it wasn’t all the cheese I had been eating. So, it was back to the drawing board.

Batch Cooking on the ketogenic diet by Tara Perillo

Batch cooking on the ketogenic diet

What now? The next phase of my experiment has begun. As of this past Sunday, I have increased my carbs to 50 grams a day. I have also increased my protein to 110 grams, and my fats to 174 grams, while I focus on building muscle again. This works out to daily caloric intake of 9% carbs, 20% proteins, and 71% fats. It’s still well within the ketogenic diet range. As of yesterday, I am still producing ketones, even with the new ratios. I will also be doing a carb cycling day each week. On those days, I will increase my carbs to about 100 grams, and lower my fats to about 50 grams. If you increase your fats and carbs by large amounts, at the same time, you will gain fat. One day a week of doing that might not hurt you; but, over time, it will catch up with you.

My workouts will also be changing. I’ll be doing five days of weightlifting split workouts, two days of 20 minute HIIT running sprint workouts, and three days of 30 to 40 minutes dance practice. That may seem like a rigorous schedule; but, I’ve seen that I don’t do well with less exercise. For me, a strenuous workout program keeps my immune system suppressed, which keeps my symptoms to a minimum. However, I do take a week off from weightlifting and HIIT workouts every eight to twelve weeks. That ensures my body can fully recover.

I’ll definitely keep y’all informed as I move through this new phase of the ketogenic diet. Even though we are all different in what works for us, and what doesn’t, that doesn’t mean that we can’t learn something from others’ experiences. I really hate when those trying to hawk their books or whatnot, try to tell you not to try other ways of healing. It’s one thing to make you aware of some of the dangers. It’s quite another to say your way is the only way. You should always experiment with different protocols. Some may help to heal certain symptoms, while others get rid of lingering ones. Finding the combination that works for you is the hard part.

Some great ketogenic diet reading:

 

Keto Tools:

 

 

As always, I wish you good health…..and, good food!

*This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase from one of these links, I may receive compensation. Thank you for helping me to keep Paleo Cajun Lady blog running.- Tara Perillo

Tara Perillo

Tara Perillo

Hi Y'all. I am Tara Mo Perillo, the paleo Cajun lady. I am a lupus warrior and AIP paleo advocate. I work tirelessly to heal autoimmune symptoms through nutrition and alternative therapies. Currently, I am rebuilding my body after successfully treating my autoimmune symptoms. I am a certified herbalist, homeopath, and yoga instructor. My greatest enjoyment is creating delicious AIP paleo recipes for you. Together, we can heal autoimmune disease and live fit, fabulous lives.

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Low Carb Ground Beef-Cabbage-Jalapeno Skillet Recipe

Looking for a quick, tasty dish to add to your batch cooking session? This Low Carb Ground Beef Cabbage Jalapeño Skillet is perfect for batch cooking, or just whipping up a quick, healthy meal.

Low Carb Ground Beef Cabbage Jalapeño Skillet Recipe by Tara Perillo

Low Carb Ground Beef Cabbage Jalapeño Skillet

Can’t tolerate dairy? No problem. Just follow the special ingredient switch note to make this dairy-free and paleo. Want it AIP? Follow the substitution note and omit the jalapeños. It will still taste fantastic!

Low Carb Ground Beef-Cabbage-Jalapeno Skillet Recipe

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 pound ground beef (preferably grass fed)
  • 6 cups shredded green cabbage
  • 1/4 cup bone broth
  • 2 jalapenos, sliced and seeded
  • 4 ounces cream cheese* (see note to make paleo)
  • salt, to tasted

Instructions

  1. Brown ground beef, in large skillet, over medium heat.
  2. Add cabbage and stir.
  3. Pour in bone broth.
  4. Cook until cabbage is wilted, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  5. Add jalapenos and cream cheese.
  6. Stir.
  7. Cook for an additional 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
  8. Add salt to taste.
  9. Remove from heat.
  10. Serve.

Notes

*Note: Substitute cream cheese with 1/2 cup coconut cream (from a can of coconut milk (refrigerated overnight) mixed with 1 teaspoon lemon juice.

http://www.paleocajunlady.com/low-carb-ground-beef-cabbage-jalapeno-skillet-recipe/

Although I’ve been thoroughly enjoying my reintroduction of dairy, I do feel it’s time to pull it back a bit. I suppose everyone goes a little nutty eating a food recently reintroduced. Like every food, except maybe green veggies, we should practice moderation.  Too much of even certain good foods, can start to cause issues after a while. Since starting a ketogenic diet, I’ve added organic heavy cream, sheep and goat milk cheeses, organic grass-fed dairy products (sour cream, cream cheese), and grass-fed whey protein powder, back into my diet. For me, it’s been much easier to get all my fat grams in with dairy. Plus, it tastes awesome!

If you’re at a point where you’re thinking of reintroducing dairy products back into your diet, start small, with the addition of goat or sheep milk cheeses or yogurt. Once you’ve successfully added these back into your diet, you can then try adding some cow dairy products. Most people find adding back cow’s milk to be the most difficult, due to the high casein and lactose levels.  I, for one, have a very low tolerance to casein. Goat and sheep milk and products are very low in casein, which make them easier to tolerate for many people. And, the probiotics in fermented dairy, make them desirable for those with tummy problems.  I’m a firm believer in not strictly limiting healing foods your body tolerates well, once you’ve completed the elimination phase of the AIP. It’s important to get your nutrients from as many foods as possible. This will keep both your mind and body happy.

As always, I wish you good health……and, good food!

Tara Perillo

Tara Perillo

Hi Y'all. I am Tara Mo Perillo, the paleo Cajun lady. I am a lupus warrior and AIP paleo advocate. I work tirelessly to heal autoimmune symptoms through nutrition and alternative therapies. Currently, I am rebuilding my body after successfully treating my autoimmune symptoms. I am a certified herbalist, homeopath, and yoga instructor. My greatest enjoyment is creating delicious AIP paleo recipes for you. Together, we can heal autoimmune disease and live fit, fabulous lives.

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AIP Paleo Bacon Burger Skillet Recipe (Keto/Gluten Free)

Last week, I, and several other AIP bloggers, hosted a week of PSA posts, on our blogs or over social media. The theme was “How I AIP” and “AIP4Me”.  Basically, we wanted to promote positivity in the AIP community.  We also wanted to show ways that we’ve made the AIP work for us. Hopefully, you got to read some of these posts.

AIP Paleo Bacon Burger Skillet with Yam Noodles by Tara Perillo

AIP Paleo Bacon Burger Skillet with Yam Noodles

In honor of our PSA, I actually ate mostly elimination phase AIP all week. I didn’t have to, because I already did my time on it.  But, just to show you how easy it is to follow, I did it. So, when I batch cooked last week, I created this AIP Paleo Bacon Burger Skillet with Yam Noodles recipe. Enjoy!

 

AIP Paleo Bacon Burger Skillet Recipe (Keto/Gluten Free)

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 2 to 3 servings

AIP Paleo Bacon Burger Skillet Recipe (Keto/Gluten Free)

Ingredients

  • 1 pound grass fed ground beef
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1- 8 ounce package No Oodles yam noodles, drained
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 4 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
  • salt, to taste

Instructions

  1. Brown ground beef over medium heat, in large skillet.
  2. Add chopped onions and continue to cook until onions are clear.
  3. Lower heat.
  4. Stir in noodles, green onions, and bacon.
  5. Cook for 5 minutes, or until warmed through.
  6. Remove from heat.
  7. Add salt to taste.
  8. Serve.
http://www.paleocajunlady.com/aip-paleo-bacon-burger-skillet-recipe-ketogluten-free/

I served my AIP Paleo Bacon Burger Skillet with Yam Noodles topped with homemade avocado crema. Here’s a quick recipe for you:

Avocado Crema Recipe: 1 avocado, pitted and peeled; 1 clove garlic; 1/3 cup coconut cream (from a refrigerated can of coconut milk); 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves; 1/2 teaspoon salt

Place all ingredients in small food processor or blender. Process until smooth.

I’m hoping to put together another post for y’all this week. I make no promises though. Working on projects has had me busier than I imagined I would be.  Please keep this in mind when sending me your questions.  If it’s something you could figure out on your own, or with a little research, consider doing just that.  If it’s a question of whether or not the AIP could help you, I think you can pretty much figure out what I’m going to say already. Yes, it will. And, I’m going to say this again, if you have interest in starting the AIP, get and read The Paleo Approach, by Dr. Sarah Ballantyne.  You should not even think about starting the AIP without first having read that book. Then, check out my resources page for other wonderful AIP blogs to enjoy.

As always, I wish you good health…..and, good food!

Tara Perillo

Tara Perillo

Hi Y'all. I am Tara Mo Perillo, the paleo Cajun lady. I am a lupus warrior and AIP paleo advocate. I work tirelessly to heal autoimmune symptoms through nutrition and alternative therapies. Currently, I am rebuilding my body after successfully treating my autoimmune symptoms. I am a certified herbalist, homeopath, and yoga instructor. My greatest enjoyment is creating delicious AIP paleo recipes for you. Together, we can heal autoimmune disease and live fit, fabulous lives.

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Follow Me:
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Paleo Spicy Cashew Shrimp with Yam Noodles Recipe

I’ve so been trying to keep up lately! But, with the blog, training, taking classes, creating new websites, working on very big upcoming projects, and just life in general, several things have fallen by the wayside. However, with me adopting a ketogenic diet, I have had to spend a little more time creating recipes that fit into my new way of eating.  This Paleo Spicy Cashew Shrimp with Yam Noodles recipe is one of them.

Paleo Spicy Cashew Shrimp with Yam Noodles by Tara Perillo

Paleo Spicy Cashew Shrimp with Yam Noodles

When I first created Paleo Spicy Cashew Shrimp, I thought it was going to be really low in carbs. Then, when I took each ingredient, and broke them up by macros, I discovered it wasn’t as low carb as I thought it would be. At 19 grams of net carbs per serving, I had already used up the bulk of my 25 grams of allowed net carbs. Now, I could have split the dish into more servings; but, seriously, that would not have been enough to fill me up.  So, I am not calling this recipe one of my keto or low carb recipes. Although, it is one of my yummiest!

Paleo Spicy Cashew Shrimp with Yam Noodles Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 2 servings

344 calories per serving

Paleo Spicy Cashew Shrimp with Yam Noodles Recipe

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Heat fat, over medium heat, in large pan, until melted.
  2. Add onions and cook until clear (about 3 to 5 minutes).
  3. Add mushrooms and bok choy.
  4. Stir.
  5. Cook for 5 minutes.
  6. Add shrimp and cook until no longer clear.
  7. Add noodles, coconut aminos, fish sauce, and ginger.
  8. Stir until well mixed.
  9. Lower heat and continue to cook for 5 minutes.
  10. Add green onions, sriracha or hot sauce, and cashews.
  11. Stir well.
  12. Remove from heat.
  13. Salt to taste.
  14. Serve.

Notes

Macro Breakdown: (per serving) Protein: 35 grams Carbs: 23 grams Net Carbs: 19 grams Fats: 8 grams

http://www.paleocajunlady.com/paleo-spicy-cashew-shrimp-with-yam-noodles-recipe/

I hope you enjoy my Paleo Spicy Cashew Shrimp with Yam Noodles.  If you can’t find No Oodles brand, you could always use another brand of shirataki noodles, or even zoodles (zucchini noodles).  I like that the No Oodles brand lists only yam flour and lime juice as ingredients.  Plus, there is only 1 gram of carbs per serving!

Next week, I’m going to try to get two posts out for you.  I have several in the works on topics including the ketogenic (very low carb, moderate protein, high fat) diet, the current attacks on the AIP, and my review of Mark Sisson‘s new book, Primal Endurance.  Hopefully, I will be rolling those out in the next few weeks, along with more recipes, of course.

As always, I wish you good health………and, good food!

*This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through one of these links, I may receive compensation. Thank you for helping support my blogging efforts, here at Paleo Cajun Lady.- Tara Perillo

Tara Perillo

Tara Perillo

Hi Y'all. I am Tara Mo Perillo, the paleo Cajun lady. I am a lupus warrior and AIP paleo advocate. I work tirelessly to heal autoimmune symptoms through nutrition and alternative therapies. Currently, I am rebuilding my body after successfully treating my autoimmune symptoms. I am a certified herbalist, homeopath, and yoga instructor. My greatest enjoyment is creating delicious AIP paleo recipes for you. Together, we can heal autoimmune disease and live fit, fabulous lives.

More Posts - Website

Follow Me:
TwitterFacebookPinterestGoogle PlusYouTube