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Keto Tips

I Could Never Do That!

I tell my story a lot.   Pretty much every chance I get to everyone I meet.  I think it’s important to do because not very many people have lost 200 pounds and even fewer people have done it with just lifestyle change instead of bariatric surgery or some other crazy method.

As I talk to people about the things that they have tried in order to lose weight, I am amazed at the number of crazy things people are willing to do to drop a few pounds.  Replace a meal a day with a shake?  No problem.  Juice everything instead of eating solid food?  Done and done.  Take a strange pill or liquid drops?  Even if they have absolutely no idea what is in the pill or drops or how they will affect their body and long term health?  Sign me up!  The people I talk to who are willing to essentially play Russian Roulette with their health in order to get to the next dress or belt size down absolutely floors me.

But guess what these same people say when I tell them that losing weight is as simple as cutting out the sugars and grains and upping their healthy fats.  I could never do that!  You want me to go without bread? Pasta? Cake? Cookies?  Have you lost your mind?

And believe me, I am not talking about a few outliers.  I hear “I could never do that” at least 4 or 5 times a week.  Even people who knew me when I was 400 lbs and have seen the weight melt off me and have a bunch of weight to lose themselves.  Even people who have A1C’s creeping north of 8 or higher that are already feeling that tingling sensation in their feet that comes before full blown Diabetic Neuropathy and amputation.  It’s just a basic, gut-level response to an unthinkable scenario.  People would rather drink their meals or fill their body with chemicals or even (shudder) have surgery to lose weight but giving up bread and sugar is absolutely off the table.

What is going on here?

To understand, we need to look at the hold sugars and grains have on us.

First let’s look at sugar

We know that when we eat sugar, opioids and dopamine are released by the body.  Dopamine is key part of the “reward circuit” we have in our brains.  Whenever we do something pleasurable, like eat sugar, dopamine is released which triggers a feeling of happiness or well-being.  If that sensation is strong enough, we are driven to do it again and again.  Do it enough times and we start to find that we can’t be happy without it.  In fact we start to seek out that thing that gives us pleasure, even if it harms us in the long run.

The problem with sugar is that it is everything so people don’t realize they are addicted to anything.  It’s like trying to tell a fish it’s addicted to water.  Sugar is so ingrained in their diet and part of their world that telling them to go without it is like telling them to without air.  But take it from them and the response is similar to taking Heroin away from a junkie.  Withdrawal symptoms like headaches or flu-like symptoms are a very real possibility and on some level, people know what would happen if they kicked sugar out of their lives so their gut-level, visceral response to me telling them to stop eating it is “I could never do that!”

How about grains?

Grains are an even more insidious monster.  Grains have not only thrived but taken over huge swaths of land for their cultivation that could be used for far more productive means of food production.  How?  By providing the same biochemical high as sugar but being versatile enough to be used as a staple.  Sugar is added to everything but no one is eating sugar sandwiches, not so with grains.

We eat grains with almost every meal despite the growing body of evidence that they are harmful.  In fact, archeologists can tell if a given skeleton is from an agricultural society or a hunter/gatherer one just by measuring the bones.   Bones from a grain-dominate society are shorter and teeth found in agricultural societies are always full of cavities.  Mummies from the grain-based culture of ancient Egypt have been shown to have evidence of heart disease and arteriosclerosis. Of course, when you read that article, they do their best to point the finger at meat but while the rich could afford a little meat, the vast majority of the Egyptian diet was from the grain grown on the Nile.  (Honestly, it makes one wonder if these scientists ever read the story of Joseph in the Bible)

I Could Never Give Up Bread!

So in a way, I can understand this strong reaction.  When I ask someone to give up sugar and grains, I’m not asking them to give up one among many foods.  I am asking them to give up precisely the ones that give them a hit of dopamine and makes them feel good.  I am essentially asking them to give up happiness, or at least that’s the way their brain is interpreting what I am saying.   It’s just like asking the addict to give up their drug of choice, it’s a big ask if they aren’t ready for a change.

So what do you do then?  If you are over weight, have Type 2 Diabetes like my wife did, have Metabolic Syndrome like I did, or some other chronic disease like high blood pressure, high triglycerides or whatever, what do you do?  Well, you are at a crossroads and it’s time to make a decision.  Are you going to be the addict who helplessly continues taking their drug of choice even as it kills them or do you make a change?

If you are ready to take the first step in kicking your addiction, I can help!  Join our 28 Day Ketogenic Weight Loss Challenge by clicking here.  You will get weekly meal plans as well as access to our awesome support group with over a thousand people losing weight on the ketogenic diet.  You will also get nightly training videos designed to educate and inspire you.  Click here to join today!

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12 Keto Weight Loss Tips for the Morbidly Obese!

I’ve spent some time over the last few weeks after finally reaching my weight loss goal of 200 lbs thinking about the lessons I’ve learned over the last 3 or 4 years.  If I’m being honest, it wasn’t all sunshine and roses as the weight fell off.  There was some hard work involved!

But you might be surprised to learn that most of the really difficult things I had to deal with weren’t sugar cravings or sticking to a schedule or really anything that most people would associate with a weight loss routine.  No, the hardest work I had to do was between my ears.  It was discovering all the mindset issues that allowed me to get to 400 lbs and then slowly but surely unpacking those issues and reversing them.

I’m not going to lie, if you found this post because you are morbidly obese and ready to make a change, you are in for a journey.  It’s going to be long and difficult and you are going to learn a lot about who you are and how you’ve chosen to live your life up to this point.  Some of it won’t be pretty.  You will feel shame over your weight, anger that you’ve let it get so far out of hand and fear that you might not be able to fix the problems and get your health back.

I want you to know here at the outset that you can do this.  You’ve lived with this weight for far too long and now it’s time to get rid of it.  If you need help, I would love to help.  If you join our ketogenic meal plan group I will send you a weekly ketogenic meal plan and you will join a community of other people who are dropping the weight and regaining their health with a ketogenic diet.  You will also get access to nightly live videos that will teach you about the ketogenic diet as well as offer accountability and encouragement.  Click here to join today!

Without further ado, here are 12 Keto Weight Loss Tips for the Morbidly Obese

Your Ideas About How to Lose Weight Are Probably Wrong

This was a difficult lesson to learn because I was so cock-sure in the beginning that all I had to do to lose weight was eat less and exercise more.  Turns out that is a great way to make yourself hungry, not lose weight!  It probably took me a year of studying weight loss, listening to podcasts, and reading medical literature, books and articles before I felt like I had a handle on what I was doing.  In fact I can track my continuing education to my slide from no sugar, to no sugars or grains, to a ketogenic diet to where I am now which is a ketogenic diet with a healthy dose of intermittent fasting.  You can read more about my story here if interested but my point is to not be so proud that you aren’t willing to learn.  If you are morbidly obese, chances are you don’t know the first thing about health and if you are laboring under the illusion that you do, that’s not going to end well.  You can find out more about the basics of the ketogenic diet here.

I Know You’re Tired, Keep Going

Yeah I know, you are tired.  You want ice cream, or cake, or cookies, or whatever your carb of choice was.  You are struggling with sugar cravings and possibly lack of energy as your body switches over from burning sugar to burning fat for fuel.  This new way of eating is tough in the beginning because all change is tough but please hear me, it’s better than the heart attack, stroke, Type 2 Diabetes, or cancer that you are on track for now.  This diet works when you make good decisions today.  Don’t worry about tomorrow for now, just focus on today and your next meal.  You lose the weight by eating one low carb, high fat meal at a time so that’s all you need to do.  I promise that there will be a day when it will feel weird to not eat this way and it will happen automatically but for now, just keep going.

You Aren’t Hungry, You Are Bored

You hunger signals are totally messed up.  I know, you are thinking “I know exactly when I’m hungry.  In fact I’m hungry right now!” But hunger is controlled by a team of hormones, among which are Ghrelin and Leptin.  Ghrelin stimulates hunger and Leptin suppresses it.  The thing is, if you are morbidly obese, you are almost certainly Leptin resistant so you have trouble picking up the hormonal signaling that tells you that you are full.  Over time, you begin to confuse the body’s other signals for hunger.  So if you are deficient in salt, you mistake it for hunger.  Or if you are thirsty and a little dehydrated, you mistake it for hunger.  But the most common one is that you are just bored and eating seems like a great way to pass the time.  The awesome thing here is that hunger passes.  Drink some water, go for a walk, play with the dog or do almost anything for five or ten minutes and the feeling subsides.  Over time you will become more leptin sensitive and have a better feeling for when you are actually hungry.

In the Beginning, Track Your Food

It’s helpful to track your food intake at the beginning so you can start to see exactly how much you are eating.  You can do this in an app or take pics of your food but you want to be able to review what you are eating after the fact.  You will start to see patterns and notice that when you eat certain foods, you lose weight faster or not as fast.  You can learn that you are sensitive to certain foods and may have to cut out things like dairy or nightshades.  Or you may just see that you are eating too much entirely.  Whatever you learn it will only help you along in your journey.

It Helps to Plan Your Food

Something else you can do is instead of tracking food after the fact, start planning your food in advance.  This way you aren’t having to decide in the moment what you are about to put in your mouth.  You can also sign up here to have a ketogenic meal plan mailed to you each week.

Stop Eating Out

Restaurants don’t care one bit about your weight loss goals.  They don’t care about your commitment to cut carbs or PUFAs out of your diet.  They just want to put the most food in front of you they can for cheapest cost and if that means using poor quality ingredients, so be it.  The truth is, you really have no idea what is in the food at restaurants.  I remember I was at a very nice steakhouse one time and asked for olive oil and vinegar for my salad.  I was informed that they didn’t have olive oil, just cottonseed oil.  Gross!  What else were they using this industrial byproduct oil on?  Probably cooking the steaks in it.  You just don’t know so stay out!

Keto is a Set of Parameters, Make Changes That Work for You Within Those Parameters

You don’t have to do it exactly the way I do it.  You might be more insulin sensitive than me and can eat a few more carbs than me and still lose weight.  Great!  You might not be able to tolerate cheese.  Great!  The important thing is that you figure out what works for you and do what it takes to meet your goals.

Change is Hard, Being Fat is Harder

I know at the beginning it can seem like you are giving up a lot.  No bread?  But how will I get food into my mouth?  Like the fork hasn’t been invented or something.  Any change is hard but this is why you have to be crystal clear what your “why” is.  You need to know exactly what it is that is motivating you to lose weight and keep that front and center.  For me it was my crazy high blood pressure and the knowledge that it killed 2 of my grandparents and eventually my father.  You need to keep that motivating factor front and center in your mind to get you through the early days of the diet.  Remember that you are overcoming years of bad habits and it’s going to take some willpower to set new habits over old but when you do and you start seeing results, nothing will be able to stop you.

You Are Going to Blow It, Keep Going

You blew it, it’s going to happen.  You are going to get into the car one day and feel compelled to pick up some Ben & Jerry’s or a Coke.  You will be at a restaurant and absent-mindedly eat an entire loaf of bread or a bowl of chips.  Just get back on the horse and keep going.  The past is the past and you are looking towards the future.

You Will Learn More From the Screw Ups Than From Weeks of Eating Right

I can easily tell you that I was a paragon of willpower for the entire 3+ years I did this but that isn’t true.  I screwed up but I made sure to learn from my mistakes.  What did I learn?  I learned not to allow the bowl of chips and salsa to even be on the table when I ate Mexican food.  I learned to stay out of the frozen food aisle with the ice cream on it.  I learned I am prone to eat whatever is in front of me so I needed to be aware of what was in front of me.  I learned my insulin resistance decreased over time and weight bearing exercise helped correct most issues that arose from “slip-ups”.  I’m grateful for my mistakes as they helped me become the man I am today.  I’m certainly not suggesting that you purposely blow it but when you do, learn from it.

Don’t Concern Yourself With How Other People Are Losing Weight

I used to get so frustrated when I would see other people losing weight faster than me.  People would post on message boards how they were keto for like 10 minutes and lost 50 pounds.  It took me over 3 years to get where I wanted to go!  It was slow and nothing ever seemed to happen as fast for me as it did for other people.  I had to put that aside and just do me.  You will have to do the same.  Focus on your own wins and losses and don’t worry about what is going on for other people

Support Can Be Hard to Find, Keep Going

This way of eating is much easier if you have people in your corner that understand what you are doing and the science behind it, especially if they are doing it with you.  Unfortunately if you start telling friends and family what you are doing, you are far more likely to see a look of horror cross their face before they inform you that eating fat will make your heart burst out of chest.  If you want a community of people that understand what you are trying to accomplish, join our ketogenic training facebook group.  It’s got over 1000 people in there who are all taking charge of their health and losing weight on the ketogenic diet.  You will get the support you need as well as informational videos every night explaining one part of the ketogenic diet as well as weekly ketogenic meal plans to make your journey to health easier.

Have questions?  Reach out here or chat with me in the little chat box in the corner.  I’d love to hear from you!  You can also leave me a comment below.

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12 Keto Weight Loss Tips for the Morbidly Obese!

The One Thing That Helped Me Stick to a Ketogenic Diet for Over Three Years


I have been eating a low carb diet for over three years now and a more strict ketogenic diet for about 19 months.  The good thing about having done it for so long is now that I have lost 200 pounds, no one bats an eyelash at my bunless hamburgers and bacon covered everything.  Most of the people in my life remember the 400 lb me and know that this is something that definitely works.  Plus, I’m a bit of an evangelist about this lifestyle so I’m quick to talk about it with anyone and everyone.

But those early days weren’t so easy.  I hadn’t lost the weight yet so people thought it wasn’t very smart to eliminate an entire macro from my diet.  (You and I know that’s not what happened because there are plenty of carbs in veggies but explain that to the average person.)  Also, there was the occasional sugar craving and just the inertia of wanting to go back to my old way of life.  Fortunately there was one thing that I didn’t even realize I was doing at the time that only looking back now do I realize how crucial it was to my success.

I never do anything life-changing lightly.  I’m just not a “spur of the moment” kind of guy so I devoted myself to learning everything I could about this way of eating.  What I didn’t realize at the time was that is was the constant reinforcement from that education that helped me stay true to the diet.  I really believe that if I had just decided to change the way I was eating without doing the research, I would have eventually lost interest in it and would probably still be 400 lbs.

It was the books and podcasts on this list that were crucial to my success because it gave me a kind of accountability that I needed to keep me focused for long enough to start seeing the results I wanted in my body.  Then once I started seeing those results, the motivation came more from within and I could rely less on books and podcasts.  Don’t get me wrong, I still listen to a ton of podcasts and my Audible subscription is the greatest thing I spend $14.99 on every month but I’m at the point now that if those things were taken away from me, I would be fine.

That constant reinforcement was so crucial to my success that when I was putting together my ketogenic training course, I wanted to make that constant reinforcement an integral part of the program.  Sure I could have prerecorded messages or something like that but I wanted live coaching calls to at the center of what was going on there.  So in addition to the weekly meal plans that get sent out and the awesome FaceBook community full of people who are taking charge of their own health with the ketogenic diet, I included a nightly live training video where I not only give instruction, guidance and encouragement but you could also ask any burning questions you might have and get answers on the spot.  It is a huge commitment but I love doing them and hearing the stories of how they are helping people lose weight, reverse their Type 2 Diabetes and regain their health.

If you would like to join us and start your own ketogenic journey, just click here to sign up!  You will get the weekly meal plans sent to you every Thursday as well as the FaceBook community and nightly coaching videos.  I want to help you lose weight!  Come join us now!

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Need more info about the ketogenic diet? Sign up for our 28 day training program and weekly ketogenic meal plans!

Keto Tip: Put Butter or Heavy Whipping Cream in Your Morning Coffee


This week’s Keto Tip is to put butter or heavy whipping cream in your coffee.  This is commonly called “Bulletproof Coffee” and is a great way to add a little extra fat to your breakfast.

To make it, first brew your coffee, then add a healthy amount of butter or heavy whipping cream (I prefer the cream) and pour it into a blender.  I have my little Ninja blender that is just big enough for 2 servings for my wife and I to split.  I know it sounds a little weird but it’s an incredible creamy latte like drink with a large head of foam on top.  So good!

Keep in mind that it adds quite a bit of fat so when I make it, I don’t eat anything for breakfast.  It makes for a great way to extend a fast also.  It also makes a pretty tasty dessert if you have it late at night.

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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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