The Keto Experiment – A Nutritionist Reveals All [Podcast EP 66]

The Keto Experiment – A Nutritionist Reveals All  [Podcast EP 66]

Is the keto diet worthy of all its hype? Keto (or the ketogenic diet) is a high fat, moderate protein and very low-carb diet, which has gained huge popularity amongst those seeking to lose weight in quick and dramatic fashion. Even though the diet originated as a means to combat certain medical conditions, and in spite of its strict dietary restrictions, we are often faced with requests from clients to help them get into ketosis by implementing the Keto diet. Of course, usually with the goal of dropping some weight.

So, our Own Your Eating coach and nutritionist, coach Magali Chauvin, decided to experiment with Keto for 28 days to find out whether it really is “the magic pill” to our weight loss woes. If you’ve been considering doing Keto but haven’t pulled the trigger, then you’ll want to make sure you listen to this podcast before you dive in!

We hear a lot of the same questions when it comes to implementing the Keto diet. For instance; Is bacon Keto? Will you lose weight doing Keto? Can you eat as much as you want doing Keto? Do you need to track your food doing Keto? What exactly is ketosis? And is Keto healthy? These are all valid and pertinent questions when you’re thinking about altering your nutrition and dietary regime. Especially the question about bacon, I mean that’s the most important one right?! 😜

Get the answers to your Keto questions and more as Jason and Mags discuss the pros and cons of the ketogenic diet. Mags offers up her valuable insights and tips for those who are ready to implement their own Keto experiment.

The Keto Experiment – A Nutritionist Reveals All | Convert audio-to-text with Sonix

Jason:
All right we’re back with the Own Your Eating podcast. We have Coach Mags. It’s me and Mags. Jason, Mags.

Mags:
Hi.

Jason:
Meaning Roz isn’t here, Roz is in the kitchen doing work hopefully making some breakfast for us. And speaking of breakfast the reason we’re talking to Mags specifically is you just did an experiment with your body. That sounds a little. A little crazy. It wasn’t that you didn’t like become like the lizard woman. Like you didn’t do this crazy experiment with your body you basically went Keto which can be just you’re making a face because it could be just as crazy.

Mags:
It was a little crazy for me.

Jason:
So let’s talk about it. Everybody and their uncle is doing Keto these days.

Mags:
Correct.

Jason:
And I get the question a lot. Whether it’s at a Crossfit seminar or via email, text whatever. “Hey I’m thinking about doing Keto.” and my first response is always well, if you’re doing Keto are you actually testing your ketones? Meaning, are you peeing on sticks etc.. And the answer is usually no. So my cool. That’s fine. You’re probably restricting your carbs but you’re not keto. I want to learn more about that. But first and foremost why did you decide to experiment?

Mags:
My why is specifically because I was having clients and individuals that wanted to either test Keto themselves or had questions about it and it was the only diet that I actually had not tested myself. So I’ve done vegan, plant based, zone, paleo, the whole 30, low-carb you know just different varieties of diets because I think it’s important to have that feedback specifically for my clients. Except keto and I think I was fighting keto a little bit.

Jason:
Meaning you just didn’t want to do it?

Mags:
Yes.

Jason:
You knew it would be challenging?

Mags:
I did know it was gonna be a little challenging. I do like a higher fat diet.

Jason:
So what are your current, what are your macros when you’re not on keto?

Mags:
They’re around, my fat’s probably around seventy-five somewhere around there maybe 70 depending on then my carbs 180, and then proteins about 115, 110 somewhere around there.

Jason:
Yeah. So a little high in fat relative to the average person. Keep in mind Mags is what 5’5, 5’6.

Mags:
5 7.

Jason:
So she’s a little taller but she’s super lean. So her numbers are high because she’s consistent she’s been doing this a while so let me ask you before I ask more about you. Why do you think most people think they should do keto?

Mags:
To lose weight.

Jason:
But they can lose weight doing macros?

Mags:
Correct.

Jason:
So there’s some kind of propaganda if you will. It’s not propaganda like keto does work to lose weight, if done right. And we’ll talk about that, but for some reason it’s become known as the diet to lose weight.

Mags:
Right. But you can also lose weight, here’s the thing that we’re not considering you can also lose weight going on a vegetarian diet, on a vegan diet. I think that you can also gain weight on a keto diet if you don’t do it properly. And I think that’s what happens with the vegan and vegetarian too is that when you’re not losing weight on those diets it’s most likely because, what your potato chips are vegetarian and vegan too right?

Jason:
Oh man when I was vegetarian you know quote unquote, I didn’t eat meat. But I ate a lot of garbage.

Mags:
Right.

Jason:
And it’s the same with keto. Like people say I’m keto I don’t eat carbs. But that’s not really keto just like that wasn’t really vegetarianism. And we should probably talk about that at some point on another show but we have good friends Dan and Hadley who are vegan who are actually starting to eat some eggs.

Mags:
Correct.

Jason:
So I think it’s important to listen to your body and learn to see what does work for your body. So the average person cos I agree it’s like hey I want to do keto and if I follow up with why? The initial why is always to lose weight and then it becomes you know there are deeper whys but to lose weight and they think it’s this kind of magic pill. You know all these things we just discussed it’s like eating the right amount of food for your body regardless of how you’re classifying it. Keto, vegetarian, you can lose weight. So you decide to dive in. What were your numbers when you did keto?

Mags:
My initial numbers actually my fat was a lot lower. It was like a hundred and, I think I wrote it down it’s in the blog I can’t remember it was like 160 or 170 for Fats. My protein went down a little bit to 90 grams.

Jason:
So you drop your proteins, over double your fat.

Mags:
Over double my fat.

Jason:
And your carbs go down to…

Mags:
Twenty five.

Jason:
Twenty five. I mean when I hear that I think to myself you’re going to accidentally do that just from eating the protein and fat.

Mags:
Yeah. Let me just explain to that a piece of gum is one gram of carb.

Jason:
Yeah I mean

Mags:
So I mean we’re not even thinking and I don’t think people consider those things when they’re first doing it.

Jason:
Well funny story I came in with a pack of gum. Our other friend the owner of the box man was doing keto at the same time. And I had this delicious ice cube gum and he probably went through half of my pack and and he was like wait a sec does this have carbs in it? And I was like Yeah that’s why you’re loving it because you haven’t had sugar in three weeks. And he was like chewing it up like it was candy. So yeah you have to be aware.

Mags:
Yeah.

Jason:
So right away. What were some of the changes you had to make? Someone’s like, OK I’m going to do keto. And let me take a step back. Where did you come up with those numbers? How did you determine, the carbs are pretty easy, did you just change your protein and fat to hit about the same caloric intake you were hitting?

Mags:
I actually searched a lot of different apps because I knew that a lot of people had different experiences but I also made sure because I didn’t want to lose any weight. And I also wanted I wanted to maintain OK so I’m in this maintenance.

Jason:
What’s your weight right now?

Mags:
Right now one hundred and thirty five.

Jason:
Right. So just for the listener I mean you can see Mags on our site but she’s very lean. So her numbers seem your numbers are high for that weight but from consistency from adding more food but we wanted you wanted to make sure you didn’t lose weight so you kept your caloric intake at least the same.

Mags:
The same I kept my caloric intake the same and I ended up actually having to add because I ended up losing I went I dropped down my lowest weight was one hundred and twenty five when I started.

Jason:
So ten pounds.

Mags:
Now when I started I put it back on after keto a little bit but my starting weight was 132.

Jason:
Ok so you lost seven pounds during, but, and people listening might say that’s great but we know better than that because we want to check your body composition and your performance.

Mags:
Correct.

Jason:
So, if someone’s listening obviously they can work with a coach and you would be the one to talk to them about keto, but where did you come up with, well if I wanted to you’d say eat two thousand calories, this is where my balance, carbs are easy drop them down to twenty five. How did you determine that balance of protein and fat?

Mags:
The protein I took from I kind of gauged off of the apps that I found and just like working with what they said and they all recommended I’m just a little bit under and that’s because proteins actually convert to carbs as well. Right. So I think that’s why I had to lower it in order for it to not to not switch over convert into the carbohydrate.

Jason:
Gotcha.

Mags:
Range, so therefore that’s why. And then the fat was increased from there. The remaining portion of that was given to fat. If that makes sense.

Jason:
So. So you start with this. Day one. What were some of the food, I wanna know what some of the food changes you had to make and the and how long it took you to get into ketosis for the first time.

Mags:
It took me about four days to get into ketosis officially, like I slowly saw my urine strips change color.

Jason:
For those listening that means simply cutting your carbs out does not mean you’re in keto. It took Mags doing it very strictly tracking four days. You know a lot of things people do to get there are fast. Do like long slow cardio just to burn off those carbohydrates that are existing in your cells. So it took you four days. And what were you doing with your nutrition. What’s day one look like in. I mean because people listen it’s like OK that sounds cool I can do that. Butter, oil but at some point you need something to put butter and oil on or you’re just eating butter and oil. So what do you do on those first few days?

Mags:
So the first few days I, I had a bulletproof coffee in the morning and.

Jason:
That’s what I’m drinking right now. I like it yeah.

Mags:
Pretty much fasted until about one or two. Aside from the bullet proof.

Jason:
When you made your bulletproof so I do one tablespoon of butter and only a teaspoon of MCT were you doing like the full deal.

Mags:
Tablespoon tablespoon.

Jason:
So that’s like, 30 grams of fat. Right off.

Mags:
Yeah

Jason:
And that’s great. It keeps you full, if you’re listening to this and you want to try it. And I wrote a post on bulletproof coffee. Be aware, that can mess your stomach up. That’s a lot of fat to have right off the bat and by itself. So you do your bulletproof coffee.

Mags:
Yep. And then after I would come home and I would have breakfast lunch I should say because it was more of my first meal and it was very limited carbs so it would be things like salmon, cream cheese which I never had, or I typically stay away from dairy but I added it back in, minimally but because it was very hard for me to reach my fats.

Jason:
Right that’s a good balance of protein and fat. So rather than the whole push towards skim. You’re going full fat. You need that cream cheese is a great one high fat but still getting some protein with the salmon.

Mags:
Sour cream.

Jason:
And that’s a Jewish delicacy.

Mags:
It is?!

Jason:
Oh Salmon and cream cheese. Come on. Roz and I are going to be in New York next week. We’re gonna get you know lox on a bagel.

Mags:
I love that. I love bagel and lox. So there was actually items or meals that I loved like I remember making a Alfredo Chicken and zucchini noodles.

Jason:
Right not with the pasta? Obviously.

Mags:
Right and that was great. And that was with a lot of additional like cheese and creams and stuff like that. So it was very heavy.

Jason:
But you had to also then change just your cooking methods. I mean, when I was testing plant based it was challenging because you’re just accustomed to eating the same foods grabbing the deli Turkey when I need protein versus cooking tempeh or Seitan. Right, so now you’re having to do this whole ooverhaul of your refrigerator.

Mags:
Yeah I don’t think you taken that into account either. Preparation is gonna be more as well.

Jason:
Yeah because eating just simply tracking macros is a lot of throw this in the microwave where you’re having to prepare and you probably learned and created meals that lasted multiple days.

Mags:
Yes.

Jason:
After a while. So, on a one to 10 how much did you enjoy the food you were eating when it came to keto? And no 7s.

Mags:
For me? It’s going to be like a hard four.

Jason:
Because you love fruit.

Mags:
I love fruit and I love vegetables.

Jason:
So it wasn’t like you were missing cookies.

Mags:
No.

Jason:
You were missing just that taste of fruit and veggies.

Mags:
Yes, I remember the day I came off Keto, the first thing I had was strawberries.

Jason:
I remember. Yeah. I mean you must have had a dessert or two since then.

Mags:
Oh of course.

Jason:
Do you have a glass of wine every once in a while?

Mags:
I do. I haven’t had one in a while since I was in Virginia. But yeah.

Jason:
So with that being said you know people listening. You lost weight. So Keto works for weight loss but the flip side to that is let’s talk about your body composition and your performance.

Mags:
Oh yes.

Jason:
What was, what were some of the positives and what were some of the negatives? Did you see any positives?

Mags:
So I did see different changes in my body when I took a photo and I looked more lean but I lost weight. However my muscle also decreased.

Jason:
So you, which is something we all work really hard for.

Mags:
So I lost two pounds of muscle or actually I think it was three gained one back.

Jason:
So out of seven pounds almost 50 percent of it was muscle? So what sounded really good was not?

Mags:
Not for me. Now that.

Jason:
I don’t like anybody listening wants to purposely lose muscle. Right.

Mags:
And that could have been also because I had lowered my protein and things like that. That’s why I actually increased my protein a little bit as well as, at the second week. But I also lost energy so my workouts were suffering it was really hard for me to get through. I was getting lightheaded.

Jason:
Did you at any point, you know people call that kind of this Keto fog at any point did you improve that. Did it get better?

Mags:
It did. It got better after I would say the fourth or fifth day.

Jason:
So how many days did you do this altogether?

Mags:
I did this for four weeks.

Jason:
Four weeks and let’s call it 28 days. After you got into ketosis on that fourth day, did you stay in it for the rest of the time?

Mags:
I fell out of ketosis twice and I would say fell out like when I went on my urine strip it was not as like. There was a difference.

Jason:
So you’re looking at just a color and does that color represent how many ketones?

Mags:
Yes. So you could be in a state of like a lot of ketones in your urine or a state of moderate amount.

Jason:
So what, what’s give us a reference. What are you looking for what’s ideal ketones when you’re in ketosis?

Mags:
I was looking for the max.

Jason:
Which is what?

Mags:
It was like. I don’t think it was not. Maybe it’s like 40 I forget.

Jason:
Explain to the listeners what that really means is going on inside your body.

Mags:
Basically my body is the liver is convert converting fat into energy.

Jason:
And ketones represent.

Mags:
The it’s from the fat that’s what’s being made from the fat in order to provide your body with the energy.

Jason:
So it’s a byproduct of the fat being converted to energy, so you’re saying OK I’m taking body fat and fueling my body for energy rather than carbohydrates. Which most people do and then the problem with that is we eat so many carbohydrates so you never get down to the point that you actually rely on body fat.

Mags:
Mm hmm.

Jason:
So then the other benefit is especially long distance is you have more body fat so you can roll if you can.

Mags:
Dial into using it.

Jason:
Correct.

Mags:
It can be a good source of energy.

Jason:
So my good friends Sheree and Matt Chan are also doing this but Matt is preparing for I think it’s the lead better. It’s like a crazy long bike ride. So he’s doing this as well but with a really important goal of being able to sustain energy for like days. Which is you know like we’ve discussed there are benefits long term energy, autism. Like if you have autism or a child with autism, seizures, like I don’t knock keto in the sense that there aren’t health benefits, I knock it when it’s like the average person like you is doing it, you know obviously for your reasons, but just to lose weight there’s better smarter ways. Because you know we talked about your results. So what brought you out of ketosis because people are listening. It’s like cool once I do it, there are other factors involved, correct. So what brought you out on one of those occasions?

Mags:
One day one week I was, it was the first week actually. It was that Sunday night I was extremely hungry and you know I was famished. I think it’s because and that’s why I increased so I ate over my protein.

Jason:
So you bumped out of ketosis by eating too much protein. So that’s a great lesson there. People are just like no carbs. No. So what you were eating chicken and you were out of ketosis?

Mags:
I was like I’m just to have more steak because I need it and it’s high fat and I’m starving. And then boom the next day I was out.

Jason:
Which is what I was suggesting earlier. It’s like if you’re hungry it’s like well what’s your alternative if you need just fat? Butter and oil.

Mags:
Well it’s like I did not want to have any more MCT or olive oil I was so over it.

Jason:
I mean maybe you can have peanut butter but there’s carbs in that. And protein in it. So yeah you need to be aware that my friend Keith was doing ketosis and Keith works on seminar staff. And he would do his best to eat well on the weekends but he would even get bumped out from the lack of sleep. So I didn’t even know that I could do it. He was like oh man if I don’t get at least seven hours I’ll wake up out of ketosis.

Mags:
And that might have happened to me as well.

Jason:
Because you never blew it once by going over carbs?

Mags:
Mmm maybe once.

Jason:
What did you do?

Mags:
I would say I, I wanted to also test out alcohol so I had alcohol once but I had vodka.

Jason:
Yeah.

Mags:
Okay. And I thought that that would be OK. And the next day I was out of ketosis.

Jason:
In fairness you drank eight shots of vodka.

Mags:
Yeah. No no I had a martini.

Jason:
So you had one martini which is basically what just vodka and a little.

Mags:
And I put some dirty dirty olives in there.

Jason:
Right so you’ve got olives in it.

Mags:
Dirty birdie. Blue cheese stuffed olives.

Jason:
Oh man that’s. That was my drink for a little while by the way. When I would be away on weekends. Me and my buddy Joey would get dirty martinis sometimes a hot and dirty like a little Tobasco sauce in there.

Mags:
I’ve never had that.

Jason:
Oh it’s very good. But that bumped you out?

Mags:
That well I don’t know if it was that or if maybe I was feeling so bad that I was feeling a little good after that and I had like Keto these Keto cups which is like essentially by the way you can’t have chocolate. I mean you can have cocoa nibs.

Jason:
So that’s what this was kind of like a brand and you see it a lot out there.

Mags:
Yeah.

Jason:
Bulletproof this and keto that.

Mags:
You have to be careful you can’t like for example there’s different bars that are made out there that say this is Keto friendly. Flip it over. I guarantee you it’s going to say 17 grams of carbs. Good luck with the rest of the day because you know

Jason:
Right that’s good if that’s the only carbs you’re having for the day. And then I think big picture like I think what’s really important out of this whole experiment is Mags is teaching us everyone is different you have to listen to your body whether it’s adjusting your numbers to go up whether you know maybe some people listening can have a shot of vodka and it’s OK. But, well first of all where did you get these strips, on Amazon?

Mags:
Yep.

Jason:
So you go on Amazon get these strips. Big picture. Would you recommend this to anyone and would you do it again?

Mags:
The big picture is is that going into this I had you know an expectation of not thinking it was the best diet for my clients and anybody that I was going to be working with to sustain and leaving this I would say the same exact thing. However, I think that for I think diet should be individualized as well. And so there are certain cases, such as epilepsy, if there’s any neurological conditions and things like that that I might recommend this diet for somebody. I have talked now to people that have done this diet in the past and they’ve lost weight. So maybe if you’re somebody that has a lot of weight to lose and you’re looking to lose a ton and you’re very very very committed already tracking doesn’t seem stressful for you then maybe this is the key.

Jason:
Right. But would you say if someone were overweight they can have the same success with tracking?

Mags:
Yes.

Jason:
So it’s really just preference at that point?

Mags:
Yeah, I think that what happens is that people want that immediate large drop of weight. They want to see like 30 pounds come off right away. You know and I think that if they don’t see that they get frustrated and it’s not moving fast enough. This kind of I guess fast for or you know sometimes can do that for you but the way to do it is first of all it’s very hard. And if if you don’t like tracking good luck and then afterwards when you come out of it if you have a slice of carrot cake. Good luck. Not eating the entire thing.

Jason:
At that point you’ve deprived yourself.

Mags:
Yes. And the like strawberries when I eat strawberries that first time, I think a tear came to my eye.

Jason:
Right and that’s a strawberry and not even cookies or cake. You know so if people are doing it the issue becomes, what’s your, say someone does want to lose a substantial amount of weight, what’s your plan once you’ve lost that weight? Or else you’re going to gain it back.

Mags:
Right.

Jason:
Where macros is sustainable. And again what Mags has said numerous times is you still have to track. So if you’re just saying you’re keto granted you can pee on a stick every morning and kind of figure it out. You wouldn’t, you’re kind of you’re being risky versus knowing exactly what you ate. And you can be keto and gain weight by probably eating too much fat. You can stay in ketosis but still maintain weight, if you’re just supplying too much fat to your body. So you have to be aware of what you’re taking in and most importantly, you know like we’ve suggested you have peanut butter, there are carbs in every food you’re eating.

Mags:
Yeah. Cheese. I mean there’s really, unless you’re eating spoonfuls of mayonnaise and olive oil and you know.

Jason:
Right so you have to debunk that it’s just this not eat carbs. Like because the idea of peanut butter and cheese only sounds actually appealing to me like I can do that. But you’d be at it you wouldn’t be in ketosis doing that.

Mags:
No.

Jason:
So any any last pieces of feedback or advice for people listening?

Mags:
I think you have to find you know what works for you as best as you can but just know that this diet is not easy it wasn’t easy for me and I mean I typically can stay pretty committed to the process.

Jason:
In fairness you stayed committed.

Mags:
Yes.

Jason:
So don’t I mean you did it which is great. I mean we got to give you kudos for that. I struggled when I was plant based for 28 days. Like I had bacon. So it’s like it’s hard.

Mags:
You didn’t make it?

Jason:
I did not make it the full 28. I definitely watched how much meat I had. But it’s you know kudos to you for actually starting it and sticking with it especially going through that fog and feeling it you know losing muscle you stuck with it which is important as a coach.

Mags:
It was mentally defeating.

Jason:
Oh yeah. And you know we saw it at the box and can tell when you were tired but I think it’s good advice and I wouldn’t want a coach that wasn’t willing to test it myself. So it’s really if you’re listening and you did want to test it Mags isn’t saying don’t do it but talk to someone and she can help set you up.

Mags:
Yeah definitely get you know if you have a coach even if you want to do it I would recommend it would be nice for me to have somebody there to you know help me along the way as well. So.

Jason:
What’s the what was the last question. What was the first carb? I think you said it was strawberries. Was that it? What was the first carb you had?

Mags:
Strawberries. Yeah it was definitely strawberries.

Jason:
Were you craving it the last couple of days just looking forward to it.

Mags:
Anything. Yeah but that was just what I had available. It would have been anything. But it was like fruits. And it wasn’t like you know bananas and things like that was like strawberries blackberries and then vegetables like I just couldn’t wait to get back to like a lot of vegetables.

Jason:
Yes so I think you know people losing weight for more from many people is the healthier alternative. But at the same time not eating fruits and vegetables is not healthy either. Right. But if you had a substantial amount of it’s the same thing I tell people with macros like if you lose 30 pounds and you do it by eating Cinnamon Toast Crunch, your doctor is not going to be upset with you. He’s going to be great. You lost weight. But now what’s your plan after? And that’s the trouble with this. So awesome job Mags.

Mags:
Thank you.

Jason:
I’m proud of you and impressed that you made it. And if you’re interested hit us up and we’ll put you in touch with Mags and you can start your keto journey and see what it does for you. So thanks a lot.

Mags:
Thank you.

Jason:
Enjoy your coffee.

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