We all have found ourselves unprepared at lunch (or supper!). I know I certainly have. I usually pack a lunch to take with me to work. I work as a sales rep and I am in my car in different towns each day, so I usually eat in my car. It does make it very easy to stick to my Healthy Ketogenic eating plan. However, some days I find myself unprepared. Either I have meetings that lasted longer than I intended or I ran out of items I planned on packing for lunch. It happens, LOL. I keep a few meal replacement bars in my car for those situations (until it gets too hot to do so, as they will melt) and they have saved me several times. When I travel, I put a few in my purse or my carry-on, to avoid expensive and unhealthy airport eating. Ugh! The past work week I did an informal trial of various
Keto Friendly Meal Replacement Bars and ranked them according to taste and
according to how long I stayed satisfied from them. In order they were:
Atkins Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (3G Net
Carbs, 13G Protein)
Atkins Peanut Butter Bar (3G Net Carbs, 16G
Quest S’Mores (4G Net Carbs, 21 G protein)
Slimfast Whiipped Peanut Butter Chocolate (3G
Net Carbs, 7G Protein)
Bulletproof Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (9G Net
Carbs, 12G Protein)
Satisfied the Longest/Best:
Quest S’Mores (4G Net Carbs, 21 G protein)
Atkins Peanut Butter Bar (3G Net Carbs, 16G
Atkins Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (3G Net
Carbs, 13G Protein)
Slimfast Whiipped Peanut Butter Chocolate (3G
Net Carbs, 7G Protein)
Bulletproof Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (9G Net
Carbs, 12G Protein)
Hands down the winner in taste was the Atkins Chocolate Caramel Mousse Bar. It is a snack bar, not a meal replacement bar, or it would be the winner! This bar is NO JOKE! It seriously tastes like a Milky Way! Better than a Milky Way even! Unbelievably good!
What is your favorite meal replacement bar and what do you like about it? Corresponding Youtube Video: https://youtu.be/gy-fWu1IlT0
You’re doing the keto diet?
You know it’s not good for you, right?
You know that your body needs carbs to function, right? You know that it is dangerous, don’t you
(while handing their child a Happy Meal)?
You’ll never be able to run after
your kids and keep up if you don’t eat some carbs! If you
are doing a keto diet, or “healthy keto diet” as many of us call it, I’m sure
you have had those statements made to you.
A Healthy keto diet is very different from a standard “healthy”
diet. It goes against many of the things
taught to us over the years about eating.
This isn’t your Dad’s Atkins Diet from the 80s, but it is high in fat
and low in carbs. I’m going to talk
about a few of the myths going around about this way of eating.
KETOSIS IS DANGEROUS
Many people mistake being in a state of ketosis with being in a
state of ketoacidosis. Ketoacidosis
occurs in Type 1 Diabetics when they get dangerously high levels of ketones and
blood sugar, who can’t produce any insulin.
It has NOTHING to do with a ketogenic diet, but rather is a result of
impaired insulin function. I used to be
under this same assumption. Nutritional
ketosis is an entirely different state.
You do have ketones in your blood, but it is in a normal range. It is impossible for a nondiabetic person to
be in a state of ketoacidosis.
YOU NEED CARBS TO LIVE AND TO HAVE ENERGY
Contrary to popular belief, your body CAN live with few
carbs. As a matter of fact, it can
THRIVE without them! Our bodies are
very good at using fats and proteins for energy, if you eat few carbs. It will break down proteins to make glucose
and it will break down fats to make ketones.
Studies are now proving
that ketones are the preferred
energy sourceover glucose. The heart and brain both run 25% more
efficiently when your body is using primarily ketones for energy
KETO CAN LEAD TO A FATTY LIVER
Fatty liver disease
is a condition in which the liver becomes clogged with excess fat due to
elevated triglyceride levels within the body. The condition is linked to
insulin resistance and prediabetes.
With a fatty liver, the liver becomes compromised and it can't
metabolize insulin and regulate blood sugar levels properly. One of the first lines of treatment for this
condition is to start a ketogenic diet. Studies
from Duke University and US National Library of Medicine show that reducing
carbohydrate consumption and increasing saturated fat intake helps the liver
shed excess fat in as little as three days!
KETO IS BAD FOR YOUR KIDNEYS
Many people think that a keto diet can lead to kidney problems
and kidney stones. This just isn’t
so. Many people think keto is high protein (like
Atkins Diet was), but that isn’t the case.
It is moderate protein. Refined
carbs can also contribute to kidney stones and they are pretty much eliminated
in a keto diet, whereas high insulin can be very damaging to the kidney. A healthy keto diet incorporates many
vegetables that are high in potassium, which are actually good for your kidney
At the end of the day, you need to figure out an eating plan
that works for you and you can live with.
I am very happy that I have incorporated a healthy keto diet into my
life. Do I strictly follow it? No.
Do I follow it most of the time?
Yes, I do. I would guess that I
eat approx. 90% of my meals ketogenic.
If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. If I don’t have the answers, I can get you
hooked up with someone who can answer them
We had been happily anticipating our 10 Day Southern
Caribbean Cruise, scheduled for March 27th on the Crown
Princess.We had an entire year to look
forward to it.We did do a 7 day Eastern
over Thanksgiving, however, to break up the wait.You may be wondering why I mentioned this,
well, you will soon find out just how this played into our cruise story.
We booked our flights through Southwest, as we really like
them.We wanted a direct flight from St
Louis, as we needed to fly in the day of the cruise.I know, I know, this can be a problem and we
don’t like to do it this way, but we both needed to work on Tuesday, so we
didn’t have any other option.Our
flight was scheduled to get in at 9:30am, so we had plenty of time in case
there were delays.On the Friday
before we were scheduled to leave, I was sitting in a work meeting and I
received a text from Southwest that our flight was cancelled.Due to the grounding of the 737 Max 8 planes,
our plane was rerouted and our flight cancelled.Panic immediately set in!I looked on the app for a different flight,
but nothing was showing up that would work, except going in early the day
before, which meant taking another day off of work, which was going to be a
real hassle.I got on the phone with
Southwest (only a 9 minute wait for call back, not bad!) and the rep was
wonderful.I explained our dilemma and
he put us on a flight that left St Louis at 5:30am going through Orlando.We would be in Orlando by 9, so if there was
a problem with our connection, we could rent a car and drive to Ft.
Lauderdale.Thankfully, all flights
went on schedule and we arrived in Ft Lauderdale by 11:30am.A quick Uber to the port and we would be on
I am a list maker.I
have a Cruise Packing List stored on my computer.After 12 cruises, I pretty much have it down
to a science on what we need and what we don’t need.I had everything packed up the day before,
all ready to go. I went online and checked in for our flights, 24 hours
before.I printed our boarding passes,
luggage tags and put them in the folder with our passports.I carry this in my purse for ease.When I pulled out both passports, the lady
looked at Dan and said “hmmm, you’re not Jack”.I looked and the second passport in my case belonged to my Dad!Somehow, after our cruise with him over
Thanksgiving, I mixed up Dad and Dan’s passport.We had Dad’s passport and Dad had Dan’s at
his house.THANKFULLY, Dan and I both
have passport cards, also, that we always take with us on our cruise.Dan had that in his billfold (I had checked
that he had it before we left) and we were good to go.I have to admit, I had a huge knot in my
stomach for quite a while, thinking of what COULD have happened.I did double check that I had both passports
packed, it just didn’t dawn on me that I had mixed them up 4 months ago.Lesson learned and catastrophe averted!
Princess does embarkation like a well-oiled machine, in my
experience.The Port of Ft. Lauderdale
is the easiest one to navigate through, in my opinion.We rarely wait and if we do, it isn’t for
very long.Within minutes we were
hearing the familiar “DONG” as they scanned our cruise card after we walked
across the gang plank.I love that
sound!It means rest, relaxation, food
and fun!We were off to drop off our
carryon, put our stuff in the safe and grab lunch.Susan and Ron (sister-in-law and
brother-in-law) were already on the ship, as they did the previous 10 day route
before ours, and Ron said that they had coupons for the Crown Grill for buy
one, get one free for embarkation night.We went ahead and made reservations and headed to the buffet for a light
lunch…..so we would be good and hungry for supper.
The Crown Grill is an upcharge restaurant on the ship that
you pay $29 each to go to.In past
cruises, we have eaten there on the last night, so this was a first for
us.I have to say, I wish we had eaten
in the Main Dining Room instead.It was
Prime Rib night and their prime rib is usually pretty good.The guys ordered steaks and Susan and I
ordered Lobster Tails.You could have
both, for $10 more dollars, but I decided to just swipe a bite of my husband’s
steak instead.We were both
disappointed that they don’t serve Lobster Bisque any longer, as we both really
enjoyed it in the past.The soup that
our waiter recommended, that he said was similar, was not very good.My
lobster cake appetizer was quite good, though, and I do recommend it.My lobster tail was quite tasty, but not any
better than the ones we ate in the Main Dining Room. In the past, they brought
out several sides dishes, served family style.We had really enjoyed that.They
also used to bring out lots of toppings for our baked potatoes.This time, the just put a few dollops of
sour cream, a few chives and some bacon bits on our potatoes.Not that that was bad, it just wasn’t what we
had in the past and what we were expecting.All in all, I didn’t feel it was a bad meal, but I wasn’t wow’d by it,
which I was in the past.I don’t feel
that it was worth the extra $30 for us to eat there.
We always pick Anytime Dining, as opposed to Traditional
Seating Dining, as we like to eat early (5:15-5:30), so that we can get a good
seat for the shows that start at 7:15.This works out well for us.Dan
and I don’t like to sit at a big table with people that we don’t know.I would eat in the buffet over having to do
that.Maybe because I’m in sales and I
talk to people all day for a living, I just don’t want to do it on a
cruise.Susan and Ron had found a
waiter (Jonathon and his assistant waiter Elmer) that they liked at the end of
their last cruise, so we asked for them each night that we ate in there.They were polite, efficient and fun.They didn’t have a 4 top table empty, so
they put us in a 6 top by the window.It seemed like the same people were sitting at the same tables around us
most nights.One evening we did have
something funny happen.A hostess that
we had not seen before walked up with 2 people and sat them down with us, after
we had already ordered and were eating our appetizers.The look of confusion on all of our faces
must have been apparent, because she stopped as she walked away and asked if
there was a problem.We said “no, no
problem” and welcomed our tablemates.They smiled and nodded at us when we introduced ourselves and then we
realized that they didn’t speak English.They said that they were from
Bejing and nodded “no” when we asked if they spoke English.They did understand us a bit, so we
communicated by pointing, nodding and smiling.The lady pointed to my husband and to his sister, sitting on either side
of me, indicating that she could tell that they were related.Susan put up 6 fingers to tell her that there
were 6 siblings and she laughed, so she did understand that.We had steak and lobster that evening and
Jonathon brought out an extra lobster tail for Dan and for Ron.I didn’t waste any time in snagging it for
myself, LOLSomehow, while I was
talking, Dan told Jonathon that I didn’t want dessert and to bring me a plate
with the words NOTHING written on it when he brought out desserts.He complied and everyone had a good laugh,
even our Chinese tablemates and they even took a picture of the plate.Jonathon did bring me out my Love Boat
Dream, that I ordered every single night we were in there, so all was
good!Overall, the food was good,
everything was cooked the way that we ordered it and it was served in a timely
manner.Our waiters were friendly and
prompt.No complaints from us!
Horizon Court/Café Caribe
We ate breakfast about half of the time up in the HC.I would get my coffee in the IC, though, and
bring it up with me.The food in the
buffet was good, not great.Dan ate
lunch in there most days and he said that every time he went, he found
something up there that he was happy with.We ate supper up there two nights (Mexican night and German night).Everyone enjoyed the food on Mexican night
German night, I brought in a hot dog from the grill, so I was happy, LOL The only complaint that I have is it was
hard to find a table at lunch time.Many
times we had to walk around a few times before a table was available.A little more seating in this venue would be
Salty Dog Grill
I consider myself a hot dog connoisseur (yes, I’m serious!)
and I have to say that their hot dogs are A+++!I ate one every single day for lunch and
twice for dinner.Okay, I admit it,
some days at lunch I ate 2.They are
just that good.Dan had cheeseburgers
there several times and he said that they were always very good.He had
thought about ordering an Ernesto burger, but didn’t want to wait the 20
minutes that it takes to cook.We like
that the food is served in baskets as opposed to plates, as it made carrying
them around easier.
I went to the IC early most days for coffee.Some days we ate breakfast there, some days I
took my coffee up to the buffet.Dan
enjoys the breakfast sandwiches there, along with the banana walnut bread.My only complaint at the IC is what they
DON’T serve any longer.I kept going down, looking at the desserts to
see if this is the day that one of my 3 favorite desserts were being
served.I was disappointed for several
days in a row.Finally, I asked a lady
when they were going to have the peanut butter pudding with the chocolate on it
and she shook her head and said “discontinued”.Then I asked about the tiramisu….”discontinued”.Then I asked about the chocolate/vanilla
layered dessert…you guessed it….”discontinued”!These were my 3 favorite desserts from there.I have to say that the desserts that they
did have, just seemed blah to me, so I only had one, that I didn’t even
finish.I was quite disappointed.Dan and Sue were both happy to see that the
pistachio pudding was on the menu several different days.They both imbibed, to make sure that the
powers-that-be knew that it was a good menu selection.I still enjoyed my coffee, but I have to
admit that my love flame for the IC definitely dwindled a tad bit!My hubby, however, enjoyed several of the new
desserts that he tried.We both really
like their sandwiches and he loves the shrimp salad that they offer.
The last 2 cruises (Royal Princess and Regal Princess) that
we had completed had excellent production shows.We were really looking forward to the shows
on this one, because they were produced by the same person.I have to say that I didn’t enjoy either of
the production shows(Encore and Magic to Do) on this cruise near as much as the
past 2 cruises.They weren’t bad, but
they weren’t really good either.They
had good moments, but not really any great moments.The singers were good, but not great.The dancers seemed to be slightly off on
most of their dances.Not bad, but not
good, either.Average, I would
say.Neither of the 2 production shows were
something that I would have went back the next night to watch for a second
time, while I would have the ones on our last 2 cruises.
We saw the comedy show by Troy Thirdgill.He was excellent.Very funny show.I would see him!He did 2 different shows on our cruise, before
departing the ship.We really loved the
ventriloquist/singer/variety show performed by Michael Minor.He had 2 shows and we attended both.He could do really good impressions, without
moving his mouth, and it seemed like the puppet was actually talking.Very entertaining.We attended a performance by Stephanie
Hodgdon, who was singing a rock tribute to the Kings & Queens of Rock and
Roll.I really enjoyed her performance
of Dreams, by Fleetwood Mac.She
totally nailed Bette Midler’s The Rose.I felt that those songs were in her wheelhouse and I would have preferred
more of those type of songs.She did a
good job on the rock songs, but I don’t think that Helter Skelter was really
the best choice for the Princess Cruise Crowd.Overall, she was good.Not great,
but good.We also attended two shows by
Gary Lovini, who was a violinist.He was
very talented and entertaining.I would
watch him again.I did enjoy the Sweet
Soul Music Show and the Blame it On the Boogie Show by the Princess Singers and
Dancers and I felt that they did a pretty good job on that, but those were
songs that I really, really like, so that might have something to do with it.
Our Cabin Stewart was very good.I told Dan it was like he was a little
stealth ninja, sneaking into the room every time we left to tidy it up!He always seemed to get in there and do his
job.He kept our ice bucket filled and
our towels refreshed, so no complaints from me.He was friendly, but I really didn’t see him
The Cruise Director, Peter Tredgett ,did a great job.I can’t say that I remember any Cruise
Director’s from past cruises, but I will remember Peter.We enjoyed him and we seemed to see him about
the ship.I did have a bit of personal
interaction with him, as I won an Instagram Contest that they had.Peter had asked us to take selfies around
the ship, post them on Instagram and #crownprincess.I posted several pictures and was surprised
to have a voicemail from Peter on the last day that they especially liked my
selfie with the wait staff from formal night and the one from the disco party
and that I was the winner and would receive something in my cabin later that
day.We were both excited, as were Susan
and Ron, as we contemplated what the prize would be!A free cruise?A Princess Gift Card?No, it was better than that!It was a stuffed Stanley Bear, LOLAll kidding aside (I wasn’t really
expecting a cruise, I figured it would be a bottle of bubbly, which I have won
before), the bear is very cute!
I did have the opportunity to be in need of assistance from
Passenger Services, and they did a fine job.I will discuss that in a bit!
All of the other staff we encountered were friendly and
helpful.It did seem like there were
less bar staff working around the pools, taking orders and delivering
drinks.But, the ones I did see were
MUTSWhen we first
started cruising, we LOVED MUTS.We had
said that we wouldn’t want to cruise on a ship without it.Now, we hardly use it.Whoever decides the lineup/schedule needs to
rethink what they are doing.On sea day
they did have a movie at 10am, but at 12:30 or so they played a concert.In the past, they would play another
movie.The next thing was usually a
concert again.This is prime sun time.They should be playing movies.Then sometime between 3 and 3:30 they would
start a movie.Usually it was a decent
movie.But, who can sit there until 5:30
to watch a movie?Most people need to go
and start getting ready for dinner, especially on formal night.It would have been better to play the movie
around 1 and then play concerts late afternoon, where people aren’t really
watching it any way.They did have some
good movies playing, but WHY do they need to keep playing Mama Mia!!Then, to add insult to injury they played
Mama Mia 2!!Seriously, stop it! It’s played on there for YEARS.Stop it!The movies in the evenings looked like they were well attended.The weather was perfect for it, too.
Aruba.We had never
been to Aruba and had wanted to cruise there for several years.We love the B & C of the ABC Islands
(Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao), so we figured we would love Aruba, too.It was warm and beautiful.We booked a snorkeling excursion through a
company we found on Trip Advisor, Aruba Watersports Center, and they did a
great job.They were friendly and
helpful.The snorkeling was better in
Bonaire, but I was very happy with Aruba Watersports.If you want a strong rum punch, they make
some good ones!Woo baby!After snorkeling, we went back to the ship
to drop off of stuff and grab a bit of lunch.We then walked into town to do a little shopping.The shopping there was pretty good.When it was time to head back to the ship, I
put my hand in my pocket and realized that I had lost my cruise card.I have never done this before.I have to admit I panicked a bit, LOL.To complicate matters, I didn’t have ANY ID
with me.Every other time I carried my
passport card, but this time I ran out without it.When I got up to the first security
checkpoint, I didn’t have ANYTHING to show them.I told them my story and they looked on the
ship manifest and they let me in. My
dear husband, was standing behind me telling the lady that he didn’t know me
and I looked shady.I had to repeat this again when I got to the
ships security check point.They asked
me my info and cabin number and they cross checked it with the photo that they
had taken of me.They let me on the ship
and told me to go to Passenger Services to get a replacement card.Yeah!I wasn’t stranded in Aruba!But,
I guess if you have to get stuck somewhere, it might as well be Aruba!Passenger Services was friendly and they made
me a replacement card quickly.Another
Bonaire.We had been
to Bonaire last year and LOVED it.The
snorkeling was wonderful.I booked a
private excursion with Woodwind, as we had used them last year.A few weeks before we sailed, I received an
email from Woodwind that they “had to take their boat out of the water and will
not be doing any trips March 31st”.When I asked for a recommendation, they recommended Sea Cow.I tried to book them independently, but they
had already contracted with Princess for that day.So, I went on Princess’s site and booked
it.I highly recommend the Sea Cow
folks.They were friendly, knowledgeable,
and I would definitely use them again.The snorkeling in Bonaire was better than in Aruba.I also think we saw more fish and a bigger
variety of species than we did last year.I did have a bit of a mishap, about half way through, I got stung by a
jellyfish!I had no idea what had
happened, just that my leg was burning pretty badly and it hurt.Two people that were behind me in the water
were stung, also.Then, I saw a few of
them around me.I told our guide and she
said not to worry about it and that she would pour some vinegar on it when we
got to the boat.It hurt, but it makes a
good story now! LOLBy the next day, the
marks were no longer visible.
Grenada.We had also
been in Grenada last year, so we decided to just do a beach day.We found a nice beach and rented 4
chairs.It was a nice relaxing day, no
we were supposed to go to Dominica, but they changed the port to Martinique,
due to the hurricane damage.After
speaking to a guy in Grenada about a great place to snorkel in Dominica, so I
went online to try and book something for the next day, but I couldn’t find
anything.So, we decided to file that
info away until next time and just explore a bit.Susan and Ron went on an excursion through Princess
and Dan and I headed into town to explore and shop.The port where we docked had a lot of
construction materials around and not really any shopping.The Regal was parked at the other dock and
there was shopping down there.It was
about a 30 minute walk, so we decided to go walk out breakfast off.It was an easy walk and there were sidewalks
most of the way.When we got to the
“town” area, we looked for shopping, but we seemed to be in a not-so-great
area, so we headed back to the area around the Regal.There were lots of vendors set up shop there
and we found a shirtfor hubby and a
dress for myself, so we hopped on a shuttle ($2/each) and went back to our
ship.When we were sailing away from
port, the Regal played the theme from The Love Boat to us.Everyone loved it.That was one of my favorite things when we
sailed on the Regal and the Royal.
Sea Day.We had 2 sea
days at the beginning of the cruise and I wouldn’t even mention this third one,
but it was rather exciting, so I will.We
were sitting in the IC having coffee/breakfast and Dan looked out and said “a
whale”!We all looked out just in time
to see a whale jump, again!We watched
for a while and saw it jump several times.It could have been a couple whales, but we only saw one up in the air at
a time.It was only about 100 yards from
the ship and it was like he was showing off for us.We had a perfect view from the 5th
deck.Susan went up to deck 7 to watch
for more whales and we went about our day.Dan and I ate lunch on our balcony and while we were sitting there, we
saw several whales jumping in the horizon.Several, as in approx. 30 different jumps.It was such a pleasant surprise, as we
weren’t expecting it at all.
St. ThomasWe have
been to St. Thomas several times and decided to just take a taxi to Megan’s Bay
to swim.We should have brought our
snorkel masks, but we didn’t.We had a
great day on the beach and swimming, though.We had a few turtles that entertained us for a while, also.A taxi is $8 per person, each way and the
admission to the beach was $5.00It was
a very nice beach day.
times I elect to stay on the boat at Princess Cays, as I enjoy the boat with
less people.Dan decided to stay on the
boat, but I went in with Susan and Ron.We waited until 10:30 and there was no wait for a tender ashore.We did take our snorkel equipment and we
found chairs at the far end.The water
was clear and beautiful and we had a wonderful beach day.While on the each, we saw what looked like a
rainbow circling the sun.I had never
seen that before and it seemed like 50 people were staring at the sun taking
pictures.I took one, but it didn’t do
it justice.I took the ferry back to the
boat and ate a late lunch and then just relaxed on the balcony and read.
Chair Hogs.I was so
pleasantly surprised on this voyage!I
did not see hardly anyone reserving chairs.You could go out at any time and find a fairly decent place to sit, even
around MUTS.Everyone I encountered was
being super polite and they were picking up their towels when they were leaving
and they weren’t leaving a book/bag on a chair and walking away for hours at a
time, like we have seen in the past.It
was refreshing to see!
Disembarkation.Usually we do walk off, as we need to head to the airport early and hop
a flight.This time, our flights
weren’t leaving until 3:15 pm, so we elected to stay on the ship as long as we
could, LOLWe had a 9:45 disembarkation
time.We had a nice breakfast in the
Horizon Court andthen sat in the IC and
then Michaelango until 9:45.It went
very smoothly, we didn’t have to wait long and customs was a breeze!We were outside, hailing our Uber in no
time.For 4 people, with luggage, to
get from the port to the airport it was $28 and change.Not bad.Flights home were uneventful and now we are at home ready to work off
the 6 pounds (me) and 8 pounds (hubby) that we gained.It was worth it!
All in all, it was a great cruise.We had a bit of adventure with the passport,
lost cruise card/lack of ID, jellyfish sting, but that just adds to the story! We have noticed several penny pinching things,
but nothing too drastic, yet!We love
Princess and will continue to support them, but hope that they don’t keep cutting
out things here and there.We’ve heard
that they hired a company to help them increase their profit margin, which is a
good thing, unless it brings down the overall quality of the product.It was
a wonderful 10 days and I wish that we were repeating it again soon!
heard the term “fat adapted” and wondered what it was?It means that your body is burning stored
body fat reserves for energy/fuel.Does
it sound too good to be true?It’s not,
it is wonderful!You will have sustained energy levels without
all of the energy crashes!You will be
more alert! You will have less cravings!Like I previously said, it is wonderful!
to the typical Standard American Diet that we tend to eat, our bodies are used
to running on a constant supply of carbs. A few
hours after eating, our supply gets low and we can experience low blood
sugar.That can lead to dizziness, brain
fog/fuzziness, inability to focus/concentrate.In other words, a sugar rush, followed by a sugar crash.What do we do when we experience this
crash?We eat carbs, which sends blood
sugar levels through the roof and the cycle continues.
happens, your body combats the flood of glucose by sending out more insulin.The insulin works to get the sugar out of
your bloodstream and into your cells.This then sends out signals that you are hungry, usually for more carbs.This can lead to weight gain, especially
around your midsection.
What if, instead
of constantly relying on eating carbs, you could use the excess fat on your
body as a steady source of fuel.You can! That is the wonderful world of fat
adaptation!But, how in the heck do you
get there?You follow a healthy
ketogenic eating plan. To do that you:
1. Eat a low carb diet (usually less than 20 net
grams per day).
2.Increase your intake of healthy fats.
3.Eat a moderate amount of healthy protein.
low carb, you will burn through the carbs stored in your body quickly, so that
you can tap into your stored fat for energy.The “good” fat you eat will keep you feeling full and satisfied between
meals and you will able to go 4-6 hours between your meals without feeling
hungry.Many can go even longer than
that and practice Intermittent Fasting, but we will get into that in a later post!Those peaks and valleys of energy that used
to plague you will be gone, as you use your stored fat for energy.It’s a beautiful thing!
Let’s face it, the number one reason people go on a
ketogenic diet is weight loss.It
works.It puts your body into a fat
burning state called ketosis, where you burn fat for fuel.But, many people are nicely surprised find
that they experience OTHER benefits as a result of this way of life.
1. Brain Health (reduction of brain fog)
I can’t say that I suffered from brain fog before I had cancer,
but I certainly had it during and after chemo.Once, I was trying to deliver something to a business in my little town
of Canton and I got lost.I drove around
for about 15 minutes and called my husband crying.I was lost in Canton!I had a horrible case of chemo brain.It would come and go and it was very
frustrating.While in ketosis, people
(including myself!) report an increase in concentration and mental
sharpness.I know I think more
clearly.It also works as a mood
elevator.A ketogenic diet has been
studied extensively in epileptic children.This is a common neurological problem that causes unpredictable
seizures. Studies show that half of all patients will experience at least a 50%
reduction in the frequency of their seizures on a ketogenic diet.
2. Helps Prevent and Reverse Type II Diabetes
A keto diet reduces blood glucose levels and subsequent
insulin release.Carbs cause a quick
rise and fall in blood glucose.Refined
carbs have an even quicker insulin response.Frequent blood sugar swings will also spike your hunger hormone, which can
leads to overeating.We tend to crave
carbs after we eat carbs.I know that I
certainly crave carbs after I eat a non-ketogenic meal.It is a vicious cycle!
Do you ever eat a candy bar and get a rush of energy?How do you feel an hour later?Sluggish?I know I do!Energy that is
derived from carbs comes quickly, but it goes quickly, too.Fat is a much better energy source.I know that many athletes think that they
NEED carbs to be able to perform, but it just isn’t true, once you are fat
adapted.I will write about fat
adaptation for my next post!
4.Reduces Risk Factors
for Heart Disease
Cardiovascular disorders (heart attacks, stroke, coronary
artery disease) are a leading cause of death.A ketogenic diet can reduce many of the risk factors for these.A few of the risk factors are high blood
pressure, diabetes, inflammation, high blood cholesterol.We used to think that a high fat diet
increased our risk factors for this disease, but that isn’t the case.Fat is essential for cardiovascular
health.However, the type of fat is
key!Omega-3 fatty acids and other
polyunsaturated fat are very good for you.However, trans fats raise LDL cholesterol and lower HDL cholesterol and
are bad for heart health.
and Cancer Fighter
As a breast cancer survivor, this is the #1 reason that I
switched to a ketogenic diet.Will my
ketogenic diet CURE cancer?No, it will
not, but it CAN help in the fight!Being in a state of ketosis starves cancer cells, which thrive on
glucose.Can they survive without
glucose?Yes, but the cancer cells have
to work extra hard to spread. Running
your body on ketones, as opposed to glucose, deprives the cancer cells of their
preferred choice of fuel.Also, as
stated above, being in a ketogenic state reduces inflammation, which is also
linked to cancer.Like I said, it will
not stop my cancer from coming back, but I want to do everything I can, in my
power, to discourage it from coming back.I know that it may.I also know
that there are many risk factors and susceptibilities in our bodies that we can’t
change, but my diet is one that I CAN control.Do I eat a healthy keto diet every single
day?No, I do not.I am not obsessive about it, but I do TRY to
eat keto most days.Why wouldn’t I?
There, of course, are a lot more in depth reports/studies on
these findings, but this is a quick “cliff notes” version.I continue to read and study this and I find
the subject fascinating. Next up.....fat adaptation!
Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) is vinegar made from fermented apple juice. It is 94-95% water and 5-6% acetic acid . It also contains trace amounts of other acids, such as malic acids as well as several minerals. It alone is not a good source of nutrients or fiber. However, it’s health benefits come from its acids and even phytochemicals and it is used in cooking as well as a home remedy.
I get asked, a lot, if ACV can be used on a Ketogenic Diet. YES! It is an extremely low carb condiment and it effects your blood glucose levels in a positive manner. It can help aid you into getting into ketosis a little quicker and it boosts the effects of a ketogenic lifestyle. So, what are the benefits of ACV, you ask? Well, here are 5!
1. Blood Glucose Levels. ACV can have a positive impact on blood glucose levels. Many people who go on a keto diet to so to balance out their blood glucose or manage diabetes. the keto diet effectively lowers both blood glucose and insulin levels and ACF boosts this effect. Studies show it reduces blood glucose and insulin response.
2. Reduction in Appetite Since ACV slows down digestion it promotes a more favorable release of blood glucose, which improves overall blood glucose levels, it makes sense that it also helps curb appetite.
3. Weight Loss Since it does support glucose regulation and helps curb your appetite somewhat, it can definitely aid in weight loss.
4. Inflammation. ACV has been found to reduce inflammation, which is very hard on your body! Many diseases in our body are caused or made worse by inflammation. ACV exerts anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant actions.
5. To Fight Bacteria. Because ACV is acidic, it can kill bacteria, fungi, and some studies are indicating, possibly even viruses. Acids disrupt the membranes of these microorganisms as do highly alkaline compounds. However, researchers believe that this could partially be attributed to the polyphenols in ACV. ACV was effective against E. coli, S. aureus and Candida.
So, which ACV should you choose? Raw and unfiltered varieties are cloudier and develop what is known as the “mother,” which is a colony of acetic acid bacteria and yeast. This structure is completely harmless and studies show that the “mother” contains health-benefiting compounds that may further boost vinegar's health effects. So, look for one that has the “mother” written on the label. I have been purchasing Bragg’s, which is a very good product and is easily found in most grocery stores.
Here is a picture of mine, I leave it on the counter, so that I don't forget it. Yes, I drink it in a shot glass that I picked up on a cruise! Yes, I make a face and a funny noise every time I drink it, but I love it, LOL!
I am happy to report that my scans were clear and that my report from my Oncologist was good! Praise the Lord for that! Thank you to everyone who prayed for me, sent me messages and rejoiced with me in the good news! I have to say, this test cycle went easier for me than in the past. I had less anxiety this time, especially during the week between scan and results. I only had a few times that my mind "went there". I will go back in 3 months for bloodwork and then again in 6 months for scans. This is my new "normal". I am fortunate, I had a 100% response to treatment, so I'm not complaining about my "normal".
On a different note, the days are getting longer and I'm really glad about that! As much as I love seeing the seasons change and seeing the beauty of the snow, I'm ready for some warmer, longer days! Dan's school district has had 10 snow days this school year! Crazy! I remember recent winters where we didn't have hardly any snow. Our upcoming cruise will be a pleasant diversion and I hope we bring warmer temps back with us!
Well, here it is 2019 and I have really neglected
blogging.I’m not sure why.I enjoy it.I think about doing it, I just don’t seem to do it.I hear excuses from people all of the time
about exercising.They tell me “I think
about it, I just don’t seem to do it”.Being discipline at exercising is easy for me.Actually being disciplined at things USUALLY
comes easy for me.If I write it down, I
will usually do it.I like to schedule
my days.I guess once a week or so I
need to schedule in writing in my blog!Why didn’t I think of that before? LOL
A lot has happened.In November, Dan and I took a cruise with my Dad.It was wonderful, but we came home in the
middle of the Thanksgiving snow blizzard.Welcome back to Ilinois!We had a
great Christmas, up until Christmas Day.I woke up really sick.I ended up
with Influenza A and I was sicker with that than I ever was from chemo.I was flat on my back for 10 days with a high
I’m teaching fitness classes again at the gym.It feels good to get that part of my life
back.It was always such a big part of
my life.While I was undergoing
treatment, I kept all of my certifications up.I didn’t know if I would ever go back to teaching again, but I wanted
that option.I love to workout and I
love to motivate other people to workout.I want to make it FUN!
Ryleigh and Keighley are thriving.They are very active at school, Ryleigh does
cheerleading and Keighley is in student council.Both girls are good students and havegrown into wonderful little ladies.They are both playing softball and are very
good at it, if I can brag for a bit!Ryleigh is a really good pitcher and it will be fun to watch her develop
her skill even more in high school.
Kyla turned 2 and is a toddler, not a baby.Although, I caught myself last week saying
that I wanted to see “the baby”.It is fun to watch her learn new things and to
hear her say she wants to go to “my grandma’s house!”Two days ago, Kyla became a big sister.Luca Lynn Arnold joined our family and we
are already in love with her!It’s hard
to believe our little Steff had a 9 pound, 4 ounce baby.She’s precious and very sweet.
Here I sit, February 20th.The night before my birthday.Maybe that is why I am feeling reflective
tonight.I don’t know.I also have my scans tomorrow.I get scans twice per year, to check for
cancer.I am a little more than 2.5
years post treatment.I will get checked
twice per year for 5 years.My type of
cancer has a higher recidivism rate for 5 years.After that, it goes down to lower than the
general population.In the past, I have
been full of anxiety pre-test.I’m not
feeling any anxiety tonight.I feel
peaceful.I feel happy.I feel healthy.I feel blessed.