I am very critical of any diet with too many limitations.

But recently, I kept hearing about the benefits of the ketogenic diet, and I became very curious (I also liked the idea of eating more peanut butter.)

I started researching the diet more, and while I like to use a flexible dieting approach for my clients, I realized this may be a good option for some.

Since I learn best by doing, I started a personal experiment a month and a half ago. Before I share my thoughts, here's a little breakdown:


The most basic premise of the ketogenic diet is that the body can be forced to burn greater amounts of fat by decreasing its use of glucose. To get into ketosis you need to eat a VERY low carb, high fat and moderate protein diet.

While our brains bodies normally use glucose (carbs) for fuel, they will use ketones for fuel if glucose is not available.

The liver is always producing ketones to some small degree and they are always present in the bloodstream. Under normal dietary conditions, ketone concentrations are simply too low to be of any physiological consequence. A ketogenic diet increases the amount of ketones which are produced and the blood concentrations seen.


Some uses for the ketogenic diet include treating epilepsy as well as:

For the average person, it can be a useful tool to achieve fat loss without feeling deprived. 


A lot of fat. I also have chosen to take a higher protein ratio than some.

My days look something like this:

Breakfast: Coffee with a tbsp of coconut oil, a tbsp of MCT oil, 4 tbsp of peanut butter

(Some nuts and coconut oil coffee post workout)

Lunch: 6oz of beef, a whole avocado, vegetables cooked in coconut oil

Dinner: 6oz of chicken or turkey, salad, 1/2 an avocado

Snack: peanut butter/cashews/homemade keto 'fat bombs'


Ketosis happens when blood ketones are higher than normal either through dietary changes (which lead to very low blood glucose) or through supplementation (independent of blood glucose concentrations).

I bought some ketone strips off Amazon, and according to those, I still only have traces of ketones (reviews on accuracy are mixed).

It's hard to say if I'm in ketosis as my diet hasn't been 100% perfect. I do have increased energy and focus however (one sign).


A popular belief is that fat can be lost on a ketogenic diet without the creation of a caloric deficit. However, like most diets, most people will lose weight because they are unknowingly eating less than they think. When I was in a caloric deficit to prepare for my photoshoot, I was losing fat. However, when I increased my calories to maintenance levels my weight stabilized back to normal again. 

*A recent study looked at whether or not there was a significant increase in metabolic rate when going from a high-carbohydrate diet (48% carbohydrate) to a ketogenic diet (6% carbohydrate), with protein being the same (around 16-17%).

The authors concluded that while there was a small increase in metabolism initially, that disappeared over the four weeks while insulin levels were still low.


Some experts say that the ketogenic diet may not be the best choice for athletes and that carbs are still the best source of fuel.

But in recent years, some scientists and quite a few athletes have begun to question those beliefs. Athletes devoted to ultra-endurance sports, in particular, tout high-fat diets as a means to improve performance.

I'm not an athlete, but I feel like my workouts have improved. I have been sprinting faster and lifting more most days.

There are a few other factors that may have helped: I started doing more functional training, I increased caffeine consumption, and I am taking ketone supplements. 


Generally, no. I don't like recommending any diet that isn't sustainable because I want my clients to live a balanced life and to maintain their results over the years.

For many people, it is very difficult to adhere to. Carbohydrates add up quickly and are generally apart of a well balanced diet as well as most social situations.

However, for someone who thrives on higher fats, I would be open to working with a ketogenic approach that I could monitor. 


I'm going to experiment a little longer and see how I feel.

Afterwards I will likely go back to a flexible dieting approach but with higher fats (and possibly ketone supplements.)

This has been eye opening to the fact that I may need to eat more peanut butter (I'll take any excuse).

Gillian YoungComment