I’m not even remotely an expert on this, but I thought I would share a sample day in hardcore ketosis, which is different from LCHF. The conventional ketogenic diet (designed for epileptics) requires the daily ratio of fats by weight to be four times greater than the combined weight of proteins and carbohydrates. Whereas the Low Carb High Fat (LCHF) folks tend to eat an amount of protein appropriate for their body size, and then less than 10g (but as much as 50g sometimes) of carbohydrates, and then they round out the rest of their diet with fat – but not in any specific ratio and usually not nearly so much as required on the classic ketogenic diet.
In other words, the classic ketogenic diet would have 50g of protein, 50g of carbs and (50 + 50 x 4 =) 400g of fat. This is a crazy amount of fat and calories (4000!), so I have designed a modified or modern ketogenic diet that still does the same thing without having to eat a couple tubs of mayonnaise throughout the day.
My modified, modern ketogenic diet would have 50g protein, 10g carbs and then (50 + 10 x 4) 240g of fat for an average person.
Whereas the same person doing LCHF would have 50g protein, 10g carbs and maybe just 100g – 150g of fat.
All three versions seem to keep people in ketosis, but since I have not personally tested all the methods with an at-home ketosis strip monitoring device, I can’t say for sure. Now I’ve got a goal this year. At last.
(However I would never test or play around with the “classic ketogenic diet”, as that much fat would invariable cause nausea and I just don’t need to do that to myself. I will definitely experiment with the others, though).
I put this sample menu together to improve upon one of my previous posts about cancer as a metabolic disease. I figured the information would be much more useful if readers could visualize what it really means to eat this much fat!
This menu is designed for me. Because of my body size and low level of activity, my body probably requires just about 45g of protein each day to maintain growth and optimum repair. You may require more, or less. No matter what your protein requirement is, you will probably still want to consume around 10g of carbohydrates and not much more. For this “modified ketogenic menu”, you will add your protein to your carbs (mine is 45 + 10) and multiply by 4 to find out how much fat you will require.
MY SAMPLE MODIFIED KETOGENIC MENU
- FOR BREAKFAST I could have a “Big Fat Coffee” (1 Tbsp butter, 1 Tbsp coconut oil, espresso and hot water), 1 egg cooked in 1 Tbsp butter with a cubic inch of cheese shredded or melted into it. This comes out to 10g protein, 1g carbs and 48g of fat. Within the range!
- FOR LUNCH I could have a salad with 1 1/2 cups of shredded romaine lettuce, 1/2 cup of chopped cucumber, a cubic inch of grated cheese, 2 pieces of bacon crumbled on top and a dressing made of 3 Tbsp olive oil, 2 Tbsp sour cream, spices and 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar. I would have to eat ALL of the dressing. This comes out to 11g of protein, 5g of carbs and 60g of fat. Within the range!
- SNACKS are tricky. Pâté and cheese, even on its own without crackers, has too much protein compared to fat – so I would have to also spread butter on it or something equally strange. I wouldn’t need much more protein on this “meal plan” suggested here, so all I could really can snack on is fat. I would suggest making an unsweetened chai tea (from a teabag) and emulsifying coconut oil into it as a creamy beverage. This gives me 14g of fat, which is great and filling.
- FOR DINNER I could have a can of sardines packed in olive oil (I chose that because it’s easy to visualize), a 1/4 stalk of broccoli with 3 Tbsp butter melted on it, and another small salad of 1/2 cup of shredded romaine with a dressing made of 2 tbsp olive oil to 1 tsp apple cider vinegar. For dessert I could have 1/2 cup of whipped cream. This gives me 19g of protein, 5g of carbohydrate and 92g of fat. Just within the range!
DAY TOTAL = 40g of protein, 11g of carbohydrates and 215g of fat, and 2100 calories.
This was really hard! And even after all this work, I was 5g too low on protein, 1g too high on carbs and 5g too low on fat. However this would absolutely keep anyone in ketosis, without starving or feeling hungry whatsoever. This is a lot of fat to get through, and it keeps you feeling really full. But the point of this exercise was to show that you can get into ketosis with a low amount of carbohydrates without resorting to a low amount of calories.
I think what I really need to do is order some ketosis monitoring strips, so that I can verify for myself if LCHF, which is much more palatable, can still maintain adequate metabolism of ketone bodies.
WHY WOULD ANYONE WANT TO DO THIS?
Well, in addition to reversing tumors, nourishing mitochondria and providing preferential ketones for efficient metabolism, ketosis promotes cardiovascular health, increases HDL cholesterol and particle size while decreasing LDL cholesterol; ketosis increases neuronal stabilization and mental functioning, preserves lean body mass while reducing fat stores, and stops the progression and can reverse Type II diabetes, Alzheimer’s, hypertension and various cancers.
My question is, why wouldn’t you want to do this?
I have updated my earlier post, CANCER IS A METABOLIC DISEASE, to include more specific details on the ketogenic diet and also this sample menu to help people visualize what it means to eat this way
A link to My Big Fat Coffee recipe and post
My thoughts on how much protein you should eat for your specific body size and needs
Here is a look at some ketostix test strips for monitoring ketone levels in urine, that you can use at home to see if you are still burning ketones or if you have slipped back to burning glucose
Here is the wikipedia page on THE KETOGENIC DIET
A pretty great and thorough “Guide to Ketosis” posted by Joseph Arcita, whose graphic I used up above. He is really comprehensive!
Inexpensive Ketostix in Canada if you want in on this game
Reblogged this on healthnutmumblog.
When people cite carbs for LCHF, that’s net carbs, yeah? Otherwise – logging my food intake via recommended app – I never get within carb range (SORRY FOR THE BLONDE MOMENT). I have Skaldeman’s cookbook and he doesn’t seem to fuss too much about daily counts; I”m just starting out, thought, so feel I should, just to know that I’m doing it “right”. Ha. Just another Sunday night query-filled rant/ramble.
I agree that it’s REALLY hard to get “into range”, whether your range is <50g carbs or the more extreme <10g carbs. I am not actually citing "net carbs" (carbs minus fiber) although you are correct that most people do. I count the whole carbohydrate including fiber and try to get under 50g/day. Like you said, rarely possible. But until I can get a consistent handle on it, I am not going to give myself the benefit of also deducting grams of fiber. However, you can turn "on" the net carb counter on the app and use it. Either way is "right" if it is right for you!
Thanks for the response – really helpful! I’m just trying to hack together something that makes sense for me within the principles of LCHF. I really like that your blog prioritizes nutrient-dense, healthful options, whereas some of the LCHF boards on Pinterest have recipes that “fit” but are too cheese/cream-crazy for them to be every-meal options for me. [Then again, I *did* just spoon some Kerrygold butter by itself as a snack, though, so who knows what next week’ll bring!] Thanks. Your blog is ace; so glad you’re writing it.