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Tag Archives: LCHF

‘Avoid fruit and nuts. You are what you eat.’ Jim Davis.

Although I do still partake of the odd nut or two (love me some macadamias) I realised this week that it is almost a year now since I touched a piece of fruit.  I was never a big fruit eater to begin with (although I don’t recall ever turning down a slice of apple pie or a rhubarb tart) but since I started following a ketogenic lifestyle the world of fruit has become virtually non-existent for me.

But ‘why? why?’ you might ask.  ‘Fruit is good for us—right?’  Well, yes . . . and no . . .

For those of you who have never heard of ketogenics (which, for the record, excludes anyone within earshot of me) here’s my understanding of it (vastly oversimplified, and should NOT be considered medical advice).  The human body uses three energy sources to keep it moving: carbohydrates (sugars and starches), protein and fats.  We will also burn through those energy sources in that order.  (Your body will always burn the carbs first and the fat last.)  The ketogenic diet is a very low-carb, high-fat diet which involves drastically reducing your carbohydrate intake while at the same time replacing it with foods high in fat.  This reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis.  When this happens, your body, having no sugar left to burn is forced to burn the fat.

(Eat fat to lose fat?  Sounds crazy right?  I thought so too.  But I gave it a go and a year later I’m fitter, healthier and slimmer than I have ever been.  All I can say is—don’t knock it ’til you’ve tried it . . . )

How do you drastically cut down on carbs?  It’s surprisingly easy when you know the rules (click here for more info if you’re interested and hear from the real experts)—but the one thing that does seem to horrify people most (apart from telling people they should be eating MORE fat of course) is when I tell them they should be careful about their fruit intake.  Why?  Because most fruits contain a surprising amount of carbs, mostly in the form of sugar.   For instance, a medium-sized apple (150 grams) may contain as much as 18 grams of carbs, which is almost a full day’s allowance of carbs if you are eating strictly ketogenic (keeping under 20gms of carbs per day).

(Disclaimer:  Before I start to sound all holier-than-thou I am decidedly NOT strictly ketogenic!! I adhere to the ‘lazy-keto’ lifestyle and try to stay under 50gms of carbs a day.  One must always leave room for a little dark chocolate and a sneaky drop of red at the end of a long day.  Priorities, people—priorities!)

And I admit I feel slightly vindicated this week after reading a story which would seem to indicate that eating too much fruit is not only a problem for people.  An article in the Melbourne Age outlined the effect fruit-heavy diets were also having on some of the animals at Melbourne zoo.

Animals like fruit for the same reasons we do (it’s sweet and it tastes good) and so many animals (especially primates) will selectively choose to eat the fruit in the meals they are given and simply ignore the rest.  This has become such an issue that zookeepers have apparently had to wean their animals off fruit because it has been making them fat and rotting their teeth!   Dr Michael Lynch, the zoo’s head vet stated, “The issue is that cultivated fruits have been genetically modified to be much higher in sugar content than their natural, ancestral fruits.”  Because of this the zoo has now switched their animals’ diets towards leafy green vegetables and pellets packed with vitamins and minerals.  Zoo photos of meal times with monkeys enjoying bananas may soon be a thing of the past.

Now before all the fruit growers of the world (or any other avid fruit-lover for that matter) get ready to come after me with their big sticks, I am not saying that no-one (man or beast) should ever eat fruit again.  All I am saying is we should perhaps be slightly more selective about the type of fruit we eat—and how much of it we eat.  Sugar is a sneaky bastard.  He’ll get inside you anyway he can . . .

 
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Posted by on October 12, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

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‘Time flies like an arrow—but fruit flies like a banana.’ Terry Wogan.

Stories from my Sketchbook . . . 

I’ve never really been that much of a fan of eating fresh fruit (except maybe berries—I do love berries) but I have always eaten it, even when I didn’t particularly want to, because I was told it was good for me.  It seemed entirely the wrong thing to say that I always preferred a good slice of apple pie (or apple crumble) to just eating a plain old apple  . . . and I would have much preferred a great big fat slice of banana bread to just any old banana . . .

Since last October I have been following a low-carb-high-fat (LCHF) lifestyle and that has also meant eating little to no fruit (and especially not in pies or crumbles) although I have still managed to sneak in a few strawberries underneath my dollop cream!   But you know what?  I haven’t missed it.  At all.  (I have probably just alienated every fruit-growing person on the planet, but there you go.  I am sure there are still enough people out there devouring the world’s fruits in such quantities that my no longer partaking will hardly be missed.)

Having said all that, no longer eating fruit does not make me totally immune to its charms.  The myriad colours, textures and shapes are all pretty fabulous . . . and a lot of fun to sketch . . .

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2018 in Uncategorized

 

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‘If you are afraid of butter, use cream.’ Julie Child.

I admit I used to be very afraid of butter.  I have always preferred butter to other ‘low fat’ alternatives but I am also a child of the ‘fat is bad’ generation (and have been varying-degrees-of-overweight most of my adult life) so butter has always felt taboo for me.  WellI am here to tell you my friendsI am a bone fide convert.  Staunch advocates of low-fat eating had best look away now!!

Until recently I couldn’t even tell you the last time I had a packet of butter in my house.  Seriously.  No idea.  However, a month ago I began a new eating plan (just as all the yummy treats are starting to appear for the festive season—way to go Sal!) and quite suddenly, and very unexpectedly, I found all my previous ingrained beliefs about food and dieting (and full fat versus low fat) started to crumble around me.  Butter has become my new best friend.

I admit when I came across the dietdoctor.com website my first thought was‘I wonder what they’re trying to sell?’  Imagine my surprise then to find that they didn’t appear to be trying to sell me anything at all, except perhaps a different way of looking at the food I eat.  There were no advertisements, no product placements and they even stated that they accepted no industry money for their research either.  So far so good.  It turned out that the site was run by an international team of doctors, clinicians and research scientists whose whole concern seemed to be an attempt to address the staggering rise of obesity, diabetes and heart disease rates all around the world today.

The more I read, the more interested I became . . .

I had heard about low-carb-high-fat (LCHF) diets before (wasn’t that what Atkins was all about?) but I had never tried one.  (I’d tried virtually everything else but not that.)  I was highly skeptical.  (How could high fat food possibly be good for me?  It goes against everything I have ever been taught.)  But I like to think I have an open mind (about most things at least) so I read everything on the site and I watched all the videos, and the more I read and the more I watched the harder it became to come up with excuses not to try it.  It all seemed to make perfect sense to me.  Could everything I thought I knew about ‘good’ and ‘bad’ food be so completely wrong?

Anyway, long story short, I decided I needed to give it a go.  I am not diabetic, nor on any medication and I didn’t have a lot of weight to lose but the possible health implications of continuing to eat the way I was eating were enough to give me pause.  I decided to give myself over to the LCHF eating plan (full on, no cheating!) for one month to see what would happen.  No sugar, no grains, no fruit.  This was going to be interesting.

The first week was by far the hardest.  Everything they said might happen, did.  I had a searing headache for the first three days.  I had heart palpitations.  My muscles ached.  I had waves of nauseating hunger (don’t look at the lolly jar—don’t look at the lolly jar!) and I almost had an anxiety attack the first time I fried my hamburger in a pan swimming in butter!  But I persevered and then, towards the end of that first week, I started to realise I actually felt pretty good.  I was no longer getting hungry between meals.  I was sleeping better.  I wasn’t missing the bread, or the fruit, or the sugar at all, and all the butter (and cheese . . .  and cream . . . ) I was eating was actually really delicious . . .

Suffice to say, a month later I feel great.  Not only am I actually enjoying my food more (my girls are beside themselves with all the lovely smells that come out of the kitchen these days—yes folks, Sally has actually been cooking!) I am eating plenty of it—and Bonus!—I have also dropped nearly 6 kilos by doing it.  The proof is in the pudding (or lack of it). I am a believer.

But you shouldn’t take my word for it.  If anyone out there is interested in losing weight, or is diabetic (or pre-diabetic) this is a great site for information if nothing else.  All I urge is that you go onto the site with an open mind.  And here’s a small tipthere is a huge amount of free information on the site, but there’s even more information on the member pages (videos, films, presentations, etc).  Membership is only $9.00 a month, but you also get your first month free.  So sign up, read and watch everything on the member pages and if you still believe the whole concept is bat-crap crazy you can pull out before your first membership fee is due and the experience will have cost you nothing.

Go on.  I dare you.  www.dietdoctor.com.  What have you got to lose?

 
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Posted by on November 17, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

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