No one if perfect. Founder of The Rebels Diet Olena Islamkina tells her story of life before keto, after keto and on keto diet again and forever (hopefuly).
I would like to tell you a story of success, how I used to be a supersize person and later invented a diet and lost 50 lbs and show very catching photo ” Keto Before and After”. So now you can purchase my weight loss meal plan just for $99. However, that is not how it happened (and my meal plan is much more than a meal plan and much chipper).
“Just don’t tell your mother and sister, but they are so skinny! And you are so fleshy and beautiful” – that was a compliment that my granny gave me almost 11 years ago, just before my keto journey begun.
My life before keto
My maximum weight in 2011 – when granny described me as “fleshy” – was 119-121 lbs while I was 5’3 tall. Being generally thin-boned, I never came across as a stodgy person. Many people – especially, the older generation – actually liked the way I looked.
Today my weight is around 48 kg and I don’t know it exactly because I never use scales in my life. But you can just compare the photos. (I delicately bragged about bracing against the hockey player Sergey Fyodorov and the swimmer Arkady Vyatchanin in 2011).
The weight problem was far from the top of my concern list. Between 2010 and 2011 I was sick all the time. Today my purse can only fit a wallet and a cell phone.
My medicine bag that I always (!) used to carry with me before was larger than that. I always felt dizzy, occasionally had allergy, easily caught a cold and even managed to be down with pneumonia and bronchitis one after another.
And, finally, at a certain point I decided that I had to change something. I reorganized my diet and got actively involved in yoga and swimming. Same as with most people, I had vague ideas regarding what was healthy and what was not that healthy.
I gave up on junk food, sweets, bread, rice, pasta and, of course, fat. They’ve told us for so many years that fat was evil. My diet was defined as “proteins and vegetables”.
But the trouble is I enjoy having a good meal, whereas sugar and fat are the main components that flavor food. Without these two, all you have left on your plate is flat nasties. Steamed broccoli is yuck. Broccoli with butter is gastro-symphony. You have to force yourself to swallow fat-free yogurt, but if you add some “healthy” honey in it life will play out in fresh colors.
I started cheating myself. My “proteins and vegetables” turned into “fatty proteins and vegetables” again and again. I ordered lamb at restaurants. My mother bought me a piece of lard and in the evening I sliced it very, very thin and enjoyed the forbidden taste. In the afternoon, I would get some salad with chicken breast at a café near the ELLE magazine office I worked. It would come with mayonnaise-based sauce aside and, apparently, I dipped my meat in it without even admitting that.
And suddenly and eventually I found that my weight was 46 kg and at the same time I ate well, did not feel hungry and was strong enough to work on the ELLE magazine and attend fitness classes 5-6 times a week in the evenings. I did not feel dizzy and I, generally, never felt bad.
What is keto diet
I don’t remember what caught my eye – whether this was an article from dietdoctor.com or some random resource. But suddenly it all matched up.
So, keto diet or Low Carb – a diet low in carbs but high in fats. It assumes, besides, decent amount of proteins.
Keto diet is part of a large group of low carb diets. However, there is a difference. For example, the Dukan diet also strictly limits the amount of carbs but, at the same time, the amount of fats is also strictly limited. This is a protein diet, and it is not the best choice.
Keto diet is the strictest version of LCHF. A synonym for LCHF is the Banting Diet and its nearest “kins” are the Atkins diet and the Paleo diet, up to a point.
It is very simple to follow keto:
- No special food is required. We eat natural whole fatty foods including meat, fish, eggs, poultry, butter, olive and coconut oil, bacon. They are perfectly saturating and, having said that, they don’t accumulate on your sides and don’t harm or clog your arteries.
- There is no need to calculate calories, proteins, fats and carbs when you are on a high fat diet. The principle is quite simple: you should eat when you feel hungry and until you feel satiated. No scheduled meals, no quick snacks every 3-4 hours and so on. Once you get hungry, sit down and have a thoughtful meal. As a result, some lowcarbers eat once a day. I can have 2-3 meals a day, depending on my activity.
Why keto works and the food pyramid diet does not
- The man progressed and evolved for millions of years. Mainly obtaining energy from fat and consuming few carbs. He hunted, caught fish, dug out roots and picked sparse vegetables and fruits. There were no orchards, but only wild plants that were much less sweet. Agriculture has existed for around 9 thousand years. Which is just about nothing when compared with millions of years of human existence. (Can be considered as 5-8 millions since our branch separated from primates, or as 2.5 millions since the homo genus originated). We had no chance to “get used” to carbs and to learn how to use them properly. We remained hunters, but not bakers and agrarians, throughout 99 per cent of our history. Sugar, loaves and bread became generally available only in the second half of the 20th century. And yes, the ancient man did not live long but died from injuries and infections and not from a heart attack, cancer and diabetes.
- The food pyramid where the base is composed of bread, cereals and pasta and the top is composed of fats does not have any scientific substantiation. It is proven that scientists were bribed by the sugar industry for writing scientific articles describing the harm caused by fats.
- Since 1980s – when everyone started to reduce the amount of fats in their diet and to live based on the covenants of the food pyramid – the number of people suffering from obesity, cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes has been drastically growing across the world.
If the Food Pyramid diet is so healthy, then why are millions of people all across the world not only able to lose weight on it, but cannot just follow it all the time either? Why are “how not to quit” and “how to get back to the Food Pyramid diet after quitting” ones of the most popular topics discussed at every weight-related forum? The answer is simple – because this is an unhealthy diet.
Do you what me and my team of coaches check your food and wellness habits and find the way to strong minds and body? Don’t hesitate, push the button!
Keto before and after: quitting and getting back
I would like to state that unicorns are for real, but The Rebels diet supports a scientific approach and there is no research that bears any evidence of their existence. I would like to say that I have exclusively followed keto for the past 11 years and that nothing can entice a lowcarber from the path of virtue, but this wouldn’t be true.
In February 2015 I moved to San Francisco. Later I moved to Kyiv, Shenzhen and then back to San Francisco again. I have learned to pack my life up inside two suitcases within two hours and to unpack it within thirty minutes. I know how to settle down in a new home and how to survive a couple of days without any plates and towels. But I am flesh and blood, and it is difficult to move to a new country.
Imagine what it’s like to change your place of residence and time zone several times a year. At a certain point I began to eat my feelings a little. Just a tiny bit – I was still not eating any cereals, bread and potatoes. Nevertheless, I could afford some small mercies. In the States I used to find solace from chocolate ice cream. In China I got hooked on green tea latte, especially since its photos looked so nice in my Starbuckssurpiseme project.
And all the above had an immediate effect both on my health and my shape. No, my weight did not reach 55 and my purse was not filled with medicine, but it was a good lesson. Getting back to the fat diet was easy.
Quick result on keto diet
The result was quick: I got back to my usual body parameters, clarity of thoughts and vigor. And, thanks to such withdrawal from the diet I, have learned to sense hunger better and to distinguish it from anxiety. I developed a more conscious attitude towards myself. And it became much easier for me to share information about the diet with other people.
Many people promise to get themselves together and lose weight with the start of a new year. LCHF/keto diet represents a perfect tool. But I am sure that you will appreciate what this diet can give you very fast – lack of uncontrolled hunger, clarity of thoughts, vigor and improved health. Consider that and you won’t feel like breaking your New Year’s resolutions this time.