The How to Be Frugal on a Ketogenic Diet Ebook is Here!

The How to Be Frugal on a Ketogenic Diet Ebook is Here!

Our new ebook, How to Be Frugal on a Ketogenic Diet, is out!

One of the biggest complaints I get from people who want to take control of their health and lose weight by switching to a real food, low carb, or ketogenic diet is they are concerned about the extra costs added to their food budget when they can’t fill up on crappy carbage.  After years of teaching people how to be frugal on my other blog and almost 2 years of eating keto, I know exactly what you need to do in order to cut your grocery budget down to the minimum and still get high quality food for you and your family.

This book is full of not just helpful tips but a concrete plan you can follow week in and week out that will maximize your savings and help you reach your weight loss goals for less.  In the years I’ve followed this advice, my grocery budget has shrank about 20% and I have lost over 170 lbs without ever feeling hungry.  It works!

To get your copy, just click here.  Let me know what you think!

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12/21 Weightloss Wednesday: A New Addition to Our Family!

It’s time for Weightloss Wednesday!  It has been a busy week and I think that has showed up on the scales as I am clocking it right at 230 lbs this morning which means I really haven’t lost any weight this week but I’m not upset.  It has been a CRAZY busy week.  Usually the week before Christmas is pretty tough for us because not only are we getting all that pre-Christmas shopping done but Dian’s birthday and our anniversary falls right on that week.  This year we made this week even crazy when we added the birthday of our new granddaughter!

We welcomed the new baby home from the hospital yesterday and she is absolutely the most beautiful creature ever!  Now we’ve got to granddaughters running around here and Dian and I couldn’t be happier.  If anything, it has reminded me how important it is to continue my weight loss journey so I can be here while these precious babies grow up.

In other news, the new ebook How to Be Frugal on a Ketogenic Diet is still on track to be ready for sale on Christmas Eve.  You can pre-order your copy here.  We are putting the finishing touches on the editing and mocking up some covers.  I’m excited to be able to share this with you and help you save money!

I finally found Halo Top ice cream the other day.  It’s a sugar free, low calorie, high fat, keto friendly ice cream and I can tell you that I am a huge fan.  I got 2 flavors, the mint chocolate chip and the lemon cake and they were both amazing.  The texture is a little different because when you take a bite and it begins to melt, it almost evaporates like a mix between ice cream and cotton candy.  I think if you ever melted down a pint, there would only be about an inch of liquid in the tub but it tastes so good, I don’t really mind that.  It’s a little pricey at $5.99 a pint (about double a pint of Ben & Jerry’s) but I think it’s well worth that for a guilt free treat.  Ice cream has always been my go-to dessert because some of my earliest memories are sharing a bowl of Blue Bell with my Grandfather so it was very cool that I got to share Halo Top with my Granddaughter last night and she clearly enjoyed it . (Not the new granddaughter of course.)

I am also currently re-writing the lessons for the new 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge to more accurately reflect my transition from a simple low carb diet towards a keto diet plus include the massive amount of info I’ve learned over the last 2 years.  If you would like to join us, it all starts on Jan 2nd and you can join us here now.

How are you doing?  Let me know in the comments.

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The My Sugar Free Journey Podcast – Episode 21: How to Be Frugal on Keto

In this week’s My Sugar Free Journey Podcast, I am discussing my new book that will be out soon that will give tips and tricks for eating keto on a budget.  (You can preorder a copy here and it will be out just before Christmas!)  In this episode we will look at a few more tip for being frugal on keto.  I absolutely love being able to help people save money and reclaim their health at the same time!

Remember that you can follow us on iTunes and I would really appreciate a review there on iTunes.  Thanks!

Remember that we will be taking the next 2 weeks off for the holidays.

Also the 28 Day Sugar Free Weight Loss Challenge starts on Jan 2nd and you can join the FaceBook page here!

What is Sugar Free and Keto Friendly at Dave & Busters?

Be sure to use this affiliate link before you shop at Amazon.  It doesn’t cost you anything and helps out the work we are doing here.  You can also buy your Pure Vitamin Club vitamins by clicking here.  Thanks!

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What is Sugar Free and Keto Friendly at Dave & Busters?

Looking for more great low carb menu items

at your favorite restaurants?

Click here to get the full ebook!

This post marks a subtle change in our What to Eat at Restaurants series of posts as we will no longer just look at what is sugar free but also what can be eaten on a ketogenic diet since that more closely matches how I eat now.  (170 lbs gone!  You should try it!)

Dave and Buster’s also presents a difficult challenge because they don’t make ingredients list available on their website so some of what is below is a best guess, fortunately I’ve been doing this for a while so my guesses are pretty good.

Appetizers

  • Steamed Edamame – Soybeans aren’t the best food on a keto diet but it’s the only thing with no simple carbs or added sugar.

Soup & Salad

  • Fresh Garden Salad – Tell them to hold the tortilla strips and ask for olive oil and vinegar on the side for the dressing.  I will sometimes squeeze a lemon over the salad with a little oil for a different flavor.
  • Parmesan Ceasar Salad – Tell them to hold the croutons and put the dressing on the side.  There seems to be a tiny amount of sugar in the dressing but because I can’t see the ingredients, I don’t know exactly where it is coming from.
  • Tomato Feta Soup – Again, not a ton of info on this but it looks like most of the sugar is from the tomatoes instead of being added after the fact.  Definitely no grains though.
  • Cheesy Spinach Dip – Ask for a side of raw broccoli instead of the chips.
  • The Lawnmower – Get an Oil & Vinegar dressing
  • Grilled Steak Salad – Hold the candied pecans and get an oil & vinegar dressing

Surf & Turf

  • Bacon Wrapped Shrimp with Lobster Sauce & Fire Grilled Sirloin – Not gonna lie, this is the dish you should order.  I have no idea what is in the Lobster sauce and no one in the restaurant seemed to know so I avoided it but the shrimp don’t need it.  They are wrapped in bacon after all!  But if you do want a dipping sauce, ask the waiter to bring you a cup of melted butter.  Swap the sides out for some fresh veggies and you are golden.
  • Tenderloin and Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp – Just tell them to hold the pasta
  • Grilled Chicken and Bacon Wrapped Shrimp – Just swap the sides out
  • Bacon Wrapped Sirloin Medallions and Grilled Shrimp – Swap those sides out.

Seafood

  • Fire Grilled Salmon – Watch your sides

Burgers

  • The South Philly Burger – Hold the bun and swap the fries out for veggies
  • The Hottie – Hold the bun and swap the fries out for veggies
  • Dave’s Double Cheeseburger – Hold the bun and swap the fries out for veggies
  • Buster’s Cheeseburger – Hold the bun and swap the fries out for veggies
  • BLT Turkey Burger – Hold the bun and swap the fries out for veggies

Looking for more great low carb menu items at your favorite restaurants?

Click here to get the full ebook!

What is Sugar Free and Keto Friendly at Dave & Busters?

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The My Sugar Free Journey Podcast – Episode 20: How to Meal Plan and Prep!

The My Sugar Free Journey Podcast – Episode 20: How to Meal Plan and Prep!

In this week’s My Sugar Free Journey Podcast, I am discussing my new book that will be out soon that will give tips and tricks for eating keto on a budget.  (You can preorder a copy here and it will be out just before Christmas!)  In this episode we will look at something that made a huge difference in my weight and pocketbook, learning how to meal prep and plan.  It’s easy to do and there probably isn’t anything you can do week in and week out that will save you more money in the long run.

Remember that you can follow us on iTunes and I would really appreciate a review there on iTunes.  Thanks!

Here are the other things discussed in this episode.

Keto Tip: Don’t Eat Seed or Vegetable Oils

Be sure to use this affiliate link before you shop at Amazon.  It doesn’t cost you anything and helps out the work we are doing here.  You can also buy your Pure Vitamin Club vitamins by clicking here.  Thanks!

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Need more info about the ketogenic diet? How about a great support group? Join our Ketogenic Facebook support group!

12/7 Weightloss Wednesday: Another Major Goal Met!

12/7 Weightloss Wednesday: Another Major Goal Met!

It’s time for Weightloss Wednesday!  I’m thrilled to say that I have reached the next goal I set for myself by finally dipping under 230 lbs!  I am 229.6 lb which means I have lost a bit over 170 lbs.  I can’t even express how happy I am to see that another one of the little mini-goals I have set for myself has been reached.

I have made some significant changes to my routine in the last 2 weeks because I have started working some overnight shifts at my local grocery store (not Walmart) to make some extra Christmas money.  Because of how terribly slow I am right now at my job I have been foregoing any mid-shift break to eat, then I don’t want to eat when I get home because I don’t want to sleep on a full stomach.  The end result of this is that I have fallen into a natural Intermittent Fasting regimen where I eat breakfast about 3 PM and then I cook dinner for the family around 7.  It’s still incredible to me that I can go from about 8 PM through a long 8-10 hour shift at work, then 8 hours of sleep with no food without any hunger pains and with no drop in energy levels.  Thanks Nutritional Ketosis!

I had said before Thanksgiving that my only goal for the Holiday season was to just not gain weight but after seeing this new goal finally get met, I have adjusted my thinking and now want to get under 225 by the end of the year.  Losing 5 lbs in a month that contains Christmas is going to be pretty darn difficult but I just love seeing those numbers drop so much that I’m willing to go hard after it.  I can’t believe how close I am to reaching my big goal of being under 200 lbs.

How are you progressing?  Let me know in the comments below!

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12/7 Weightloss Wednesday: Another Major Goal Met!

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Keto Tip: Don’t Eat Seed or Vegetable Oils

Over the last 100+ years, consumption of polyunsaturated fats from vegetable and seed oils has risen dramatically and we are seeing several detrimental effects of these oils on our health, this despite the fact that these oils are usually marketed as healthy alternatives to saturated fats like butter or coconut oil.

Where Did They Come From?

These oils are extracted from various kinds of seeds and vegetables using high amounts of heat, pressure, and harmful deodorizing chemicals like hexane.  These are oils that didn’t exist before the 20th century because we didn’t have the industrial equipment necessary to manufacture them.

If you would like to get insight into what goes into the manufacture of canola oil, watch the following video.  Just keep in mind that everything they say about it being healthy is 100% wrong.

Remember that we evolved over the course of thousands of years to process our food, we just haven’t evolved the ability to process these new foods that have just been invented over the last century or so.

How Do They Harm Us?

The main issue with these oils is that they are high in Omega 6 fatty acids.  Omega 6 and Omega 3 fatty acids are both essential for our health but for most of our evolution, we got these fats in roughly a 1:1 ratio.  Since the invention of these new oils, that ratio has risen to 16:1 for most Americans.

Omega 6 fatty acids are pro-inflammatory, causing inflamation in out arteries which puts more strain on our heart which causes higher rates of cardiovascular disease.  In fact inflammation is the underlying cause of a host of so-called “Western Diseases” like Alzheimer’s, Type II Diabetes, Cancer, Arthritis and more.

These Omega-6 fatty acids are also not always burned for fuel by our bodies like other fats but are used in the formation of cell walls.  These cells that are made up of high levels of Omega-6 are highly reactive causing larger amount of Reactive Oxygen Species in the cells.  These ROS’ are the waste products of the cell and cause damage when in large amounts.  It one of the job’s of the Omega-3 fatty acids to clear those out but since the ratios are so far off, there aren’t enough Omega-3’s in our body to undo the damage from all the Omega-6’s.

The Omega-6 fats are very easily damaged polyunsaturated fats so once they get into your cell walls, they break down faster than other fats would have.  This causes substantial long term damage in people who eat a diet high in Omega-6s for years or even decades.

To avoid these toxic oils, don’t eat the following.

  • Soybean oil.
  • Canola oil.
  • Corn oil.
  • Safflower oil.
  • Cottonseed oil.
  • Sunflower oil.
  • Peanut oil.
  • Sesame oil.
  • Rapeseed oil.
  • Rice Bran oil.

Stick with saturated or monounsaturated fats like olive oil, lard, tallow, butter, or coconut oil.

Remember that these oils have been added to most processed food so be sure to read those labels before you eat it.

If you would like to read more on this subject, I recommend Toxic Oil by David Gillespie.  Unfortunately, it no longer appears to be for sale on Amazon but if you ever run across it, it’s a great read.

See all Keto Tips here

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The My Sugar Free Journey Podcast – Episode 19: How To Be Frugal on a Keto Diet By Cooking!

In this week’s My Sugar Free Journey Podcast, I am discussing my new book that will be out soon that will give tips and tricks for eating keto on a budget.  (You can preorder a copy here and it will be out just before Christmas!)  In this episode we will look at something that made a huge difference in my weight and pocketbook, learning how to cook at home.  It’s easy to do and there probably isn’t anything you can do week in and week out that will save you more money in the long run.
Remember that you can follow us on iTunes and I would really appreciate a review there on iTunes.  Thanks!

Here are the other things we discussed on the podcast.

The Cooking Collaboration cooking class through Reddit is here.

The cookware from Amazon is here.

The blog post response to last week’s podcast is here.

Why I Believe A Ketogenic Diet Is Better Than Calorie Restriction For the Morbidly Obese

Be sure to use this affiliate link before you shop at Amazon.  It doesn’t cost you anything and helps out the work we are doing here.  You can also buy your Pure Vitamin Club vitamins by clicking here.  Thanks!

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Need more info about the ketogenic diet? How about a great support group? Join our Ketogenic Facebook support group!

11/30 Weightloss Wednesday: Post Thanksgiving Recap

It’s time for a Weightloss Wednesday!  This has been an eventful week as I was 230.3 last Wednesday, then got to as high as 236 in the next few days because, you know, Thanksgiving and now I’m down to 233.2 lbs this morning.  I have absolutely no regrets about gaining 6 lbs from Thanksgiving because that’s the beauty of being ketogenic 99% of the time. I can eat what I want on Thanksgiving and feel confident that the whatever I gain can be taken off quickly and easily just by getting back to my regular routine.  I should also say that the majority of my Thanksgiving was keto, I just had some Sweet Potato Crunch that while it was sugar free, it certainly had a lot more carbs than my usual diet.

 

It was also interesting for anther reason, there was a bit of a dustup over this week’s My Sugar Free Journey Podcast where I talked to someone who advocated a calorie restricted diet for weight loss.  I think I made my views on this pretty clear in this post but it was so interesting to hear how the “other side” thinks.  If there is anything I can say to anyone reading this, it would be that you have probably tried the old “eat less, exercise more” diets and the probably worked for a short time and then you gained all the weight back.  There is a reason for that!  Always being hungry is not a viable weight loss solution and it’s time to try something else.  I would start with this post on What is a Ketogenic Diet and contact me with any questions.  You can also check out our support FaceBook page if you could use some support.

How are you progressing?  Let me know in the comments below!

Please remember to subscribe to the YouTube channel to never miss a video and come see me over on Instagram.

11/30 Weightloss Wednesday: Post Thanksgiving Recap

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Why I Believe A Ketogenic Diet Is Better Than Calorie Restriction For the Morbidly Obese

Why A Ketogenic Diet Is Better Than Calorie Restriction For the Morbidly Obese

This weekend, I released a podcast where I interviewed Dr Mike Israetel of Renaissance Periodization where we discussed a ketogenic diet vs a calorie restricted diet for weight loss.  There was a bit of a kerfuffle on his FaceBook page and I think some of the people over there made enough good points that it merited a separate blogpost to answer some of the objections.

You Are Just Using a Ketogenic Diet to Restrict Calories!  It’s the Calorie Restriction That is Causing the Weight Loss, Not The Ketogenic Diet!

First of all no one is debating this, a well-formulated ketogenic diet does result in a calorie deficit because a ketogenic diet does a much better job of suppressing appetite than a typical American diet but I think people who say this are missing the point.  If you are investigating a plane crash and I asked you why the plane crashed, you could answer that gravity pulled the airplane to the earth which caused the plane to crash.   That’s certainly what happened but it doesn’t answer my question.  When I ask you why people get fat and you say it’s because they ate too many calories, you haven’t really answered my question.

What we are trying to get at is the underlying reason we are eating so many calories to our own harm.  No one sets out to be 400 lbs, it just kind of happens over time but what is the mechanism that causes weight gain year after year when obesity did not use to be the problem it is now?  Something has changed in our environment that is causing this and I think the evidence points towards not on increase in total calories but an increase in added sugar to our foods which leads to increased insulin levels in our bodies.

It’s the insulin levels that cause weight gain not only because it is an important hormone in the process by which we store excess blood sugar as fat but also because the body has a hard time pulling fat out of long term storage when insulin levels are high.  It’s far easier for the body to release the ghrelin hormone which drives hunger and causes you to eat, which tops off your blood sugar level rather than do the hard work of breaking down stored fat for fuel.

Opponents of the ketogenic diet say it only works because you are restricting calories and we would say it is exactly the opposite.  I can restrict my calories and control my appetite because the ketogenic diet suppresses my insulin which causes lower levels of ghrelin (the hormone that stokes hunger) and greater sensitivity to leptin. (the hormone that causes feelings of satiety)  While it is certainly possible to eat so much food on a ketogenic diet that you don’t lose weight (one of the reasons I had to get rid of the can of nuts on my desk) it is a heckuva lot harder to eat more calories than you should on a high fat diet.

Mike Gave Hard Science And All You Talked About Was Your Personal Experience

This might be my one regret about the interview, (well, that and leaving off the Dr on the title card) but it came from a place of not wanting to be rude to my guest or flat out say he was wrong but now that I’ve had some time to consider the objections, I realize I should have done a better job in this area.  As for the science, I am just not going to do a better job at than what Drs Phinney and Volek have done with their 2 books, or what Dr Lustig did in Fat Chance, or what Gary Taubes did in Good Calories, Bad Calories.  In fact, if you really want to to see the science behind exactly where this obesity epidemic came from, I recommend you start with Gary Taubes.

But if I had it all to do over again, I would have tried to do a better job making one important point.  The rules for weight loss are different if you have 20 lbs to lose vs if you have 200 lbs to lose.  I’m not saying that calorie restriction doesn’t work, I’m saying that someone who is morbidly obese has a MUCH harder time staying on a calorie restricted diet than someone who isn’t.  The fact of the matter is, people who are morbidly obese are not paragons of self-control who can eat 500 less calories a day for the multiple years it will take to lose 200 lbs.  Are there some who have done it?  Of course, but not too many.  Now if you can afford to hire some like Dr Mike Israetel or someone from Renaissance Periodization to assist you, keep you accountable, make you meal plans, and do all the other things that are helpful on a diet, then more power to you.  I am sure that increases you chances of success by a wide margin but for the average guy that is morbidly obese, we need something a lot easier.  Which brings us to the next objection.

Keto Is Great If You Are Lazy

First of all, any one that embarks on any health journey and has success is far from lazy.  Let me tell you, while keto might be the easiest way to lose weight, it’s still not easy.  It is hard work to move that needle every morning and I applaud anyone who conquers obesity in whatever way works for them.  This struck me as a disrespectful way of saying that keto is “cheating” and that people who exercise 2 hours a day are somehow morally superior to those of us that simply do not have the time necessary to train for a weight lifting competition or run a marathon.  You put the health of someone who was once morbidly obese and lost 100+ lbs through calorie restriction and large amounts of exercise against my health and I feel confident I can hold my own.  Exercise isn’t needed to lose weight on keto but for the first time in my life I want to exercise because I can actually use my stored fat for fuel instead always being in “fat storage” mode with high levels of insulin.

The most important difference between these 2 ways of approaching weight loss is with keto, eating less and exercising more are the end results, not the means by which you get there.

I Am a Douche

The internet certainly brings out the best in people.  A common complaint was that I shouldn’t have restated my case at the end of the podcast and it was disrespectful to Dr Mike.  I’m sorry if you feel that way but keep in mind that here was a week between the interview and when I recorded that last bit so I had some time to think about what he said.  I don’t take everything at face value and took the time to genuinely consider his points but found them wanting.  If I had 20 lbs to lose and wanted to train to increase my athletic performance, I would absolutely take Dr Mike’s advice to heart and do what he says but that’s not my story.  I needed something that would get the weight off quickly (If I did his protocol of 12 weeks calorie restriction, 4 months maintenance it would be maybe 5 years before I lost what I lost in less than 2 years on keto) because I was in real danger of a heart attack or some other life threatening event.  Also, in all this talk of weight loss, we haven’t discussed the other benefits of keto I’ve experienced such as a drop in my blood pressure that preceded any change in my weight, a reduction of my asthma, less joint pain, more energy, and a perfect cholesterol panel and A1C.  Those last 2 happened after a few months but the other benefits happened in a matter of days.  I will never forget seeing my BP drop almost 30 points in 2 weeks just by not eating sugar.  (My wife also reminded me that I stopped snoring)

The interview was great and the discussion that happened afterwards was enlightening but I think I’ll stick with what works but I’ll leave you with this final thought.  Is it possible, just possible, that the reason calorie restriction works is because in the course of restricting calories you are also restricting insulin and reducing the load on your liver by making it so it doesn’t have to process as much fat and carbs at the same time?  Could we all be like the blind men touching the elephant, all describing different aspects of the same animal?  I think if this debate is ever settled once and for all, we might be surprised at how much each camp had in common.

UPDATE:  Reading over the comments I realized I missed another question that came up.  At one point in our conversation I mentioned that when I eat carbs, I am heavier the next day and Dr Mike said that was because of water retention.  I didn’t push back at the time because I knew that carbs cause water retention in the muscles but that doesn’t matter.  You can’t say that 170 lbs lost is due to a loss of water weight but more importantly, the weight stays on for far longer than it should if it is just water.

On Thanksgiving I had a few spoonfuls of sugar free sweet potato crunch and I think I had another helping the next day.  Friday morning I had gained 5 lbs from Thursday morning and now that I am back to my normal ketogenic and reduced calorie diet, the weight hasn’t moved for about 5 days.  This is because I’m not retaining water (maybe a little but certainly not 5 lbs and certainly for this long) but because I am so insulin resistant, even a small amount of carbs triggers a massive insulin spike which makes it impossible to lose weight until it finally subsides, usually in about a week.  It’s not the calories alone that control whether or not I lose weight, my insulin levels are a crucial factor in my weight loss but (and here’s the crux of the matter) if I focus on calorie restriction but keep my insulin levels high my rate of weight loss is slow to non-existent and if the past is any way to judge, I will give up at some point in the process.  But if I keep my insulin levels low by avoiding carbs, I get calorie restriction thrown into the bargain.

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