Health First

Happy Tuesday all. I hope you are having a great week. It is a blazing hot one here in Chattanooga but its absolutely gorgeous! Today I want to talk about the importance of health.

So when it comes to health we can think of hundreds of different things. I want to specifically discuss the importance of health associated with diet. First off, disclaimer, I am not a medical professional and I am not offering any medical advice. The following content is of my own opinion and own experiences/beliefs nothing more.

In no way, shape or form will a singular diet work for health improvement for every single person. We are all so different from one another biologically speaking that just because something works for me does not mean it will work for you. A great example is that some people are allergic to eggs and can’t consume them. I can consume them just fine. That is because we are different. That is also the reason why there are so many different versions and methods of doing Keto or any other lifestyle diet. A great example of this is that my husband and I both started keto together; however, if I would have ate what he was eating it is highly unlikely I would have had the results I have had. In reverse had he ate what I ate he would have failed because it would have left him feeling hungry.

I hear so many people say you can’t do that it’s not keto. Well who are you the keto police? You can eat anything you want on a keto diet as long as you are eating whole and healthy foods. If you are avoiding grains, sugars, and processed junk you are well on your way to a keto diet. There are optimal keto foods but that doesn’t mean you can’t have something not on the list. For example if you can fit a small portion of sweet potato into your macros and you feel fine eating the sweet potato and it doesn’t spike your blood sugar then you can have it. Now if you can’t control the portion or if you eat it and your blood sugar goes haywire you can’t eat that. At the same time I can make a donut fit my macros if I wanted to but that is not a whole healthy food. So that my dear friends no matter how you look at is not keto.

So many people think they will start eating keto and restrict all this things and they are going to lose hundreds of pounds. Keto is NOT a weight loss diet, it is an inflammatory reduction diet. It also needs to quit being viewed as a diet. A diet is something you are forcing yourself to do and not a lifestyle choice. Keto is a lifestyle choice as I am choosing what to put in my body. In return my body is slowly going to heal itself. The years of damage I have caused need to heal before they will ever correct themselves. So I have been a little stalled on weight for a while but for once in my life I don’t care. I know my body is healing and I still continue to feel better and better. The more I worry about a number on a scale the more I stress and the less chance of me actually losing anything.

I am choosing to heal my body through food nothing more. So I need to listen to my body’s queues and give it what it is needing. Our bodies will crave certain things when we are deficient in them. One for me is magnesium. I can always tell when my magnesium levels are off because I start craving chocolate like crazy. There are many food cravings that have a correlating mineral that you may be lacking. Take some time and learn about them. I also am working on becoming more intuitive with my eating, chances are if I am wanting a sweet potato there is something in that sweet potato that I need. So rather than avoid that I will have a small amount. My ideal carb range may be able to be a little higher than others. Insulin resistant individuals may find the exact opposite to be true.

After being mostly carnivore for the last few months I decided I wanted to add some veggies back in. What did I learn some small veggies are ok, specifically pickles and avocado. I ate a couple full fledge salads and I felt absolutely miserable for a few days. So I am learning less veg for me is key. I can also tell based on my cravings if I need more fat intake. If I start craving major sweets I know I need more fat for that day. I have also became aware that my coffee obsession was going over board so I am actively cutting back my caffeine intake. So far so good just feeling a little more tired in the afternoons than usual but I know that will pass.

You really have to spend some time dialing into listening to your body and do what your body needs. The more you restrict and the more you cut the more stress you put your body under. If you body is in a constant state of stress your body will never heal and you will never see the results or health outcomes you want to. I highly recommend start making a journal and record how you feel after you eat specie things, what you crave and when, anything your body is trying to tell you write it down. Then research and see what it may be telling you, or even share with your doctor and they may have some additional input for you.

What you eat is only a super small piece of the puzzle, but a very integral part of it at the same time. Proper nutrition will heal you if you listen to it. You also need movement in your life. No you don’t need a CrossFit membership, but as little as 10 minutes walking everyday is better than being sedentary. Take control of your health and become the better you. Until Next Time….What’s Your Confession?


How to Hang In There

Welcome, welcome come on in and enjoy this Thursday with me! I hope you are all having an amazing day and enjoying your life to your fullest. If you not take pause and re-focus yourself on your best you. You are amazing and your life is awesome! Today I want to talk about how you keep going with a goal when you think and/or feel that everyone else is being successful and you seem to be failing.

First and foremost you are not failing if you are trying! You may have not found your clear path or your way to succeed but you are far from failing. You only begin to fail when you give up. You have to work hard for anything worth getting in life. It was all handed over to us we would all be millionaires and super successful. You have to have drive and want to get there. For some that will happen way sooner than others.

It only takes one epic event to change everything. That event can be one action you have taken, a person you met, or an action you completed. All it takes is to get the attention of the right person or the right group of people and you can fill your sails with wind and fly. I honestly believe that with everything. Rather we are talking of personal success, business success, or some other form a success if you pave your way and you keep fueling it eventually you will have enough fuel to fly.

I read tons of information every day by individuals that I look up to and admire. Many of them have been way more successful in every aspect of their lives compared to me. The difference is I am just starting my journey and I don’t have much wind in my sails. I am not giving up though and every single day I keep gaining more and more wind and reaching more and more people. I am sharing my growth with you as I go. I share my successes and my failures because they are both very real. I am very much so defining me and my brand, and you get the privilege of seeing those sails fill up, and I am 100% positive that I will fly when I am ready and my time comes.

Does all this mean that since my time is not yet I should just give up? Absolutely NOT! My time will never come if I give up. Not only that but I am happy with where I am at and how I am growing on a daily basis. I am proud of my determination and happy with the people I am reaching. I AM HAPPY! That is what makes all the difference. If you are miserable in trying to reach your goal then maybe you need to rethink your goal. I could write every single day of my life and know that absolutely no one read my material and I would still be happy. How is that possible you ask? Because my happy place is when my mind is free to write and put my thoughts and emotion into print. While I hope individuals read it and find something in it and enjoy it, I did this as much for myself as I do for others.

Instead of dwelling on the failures you need to align yourself to figure out what factor needs to change to start succeeding. If you are trying to remove weight and you all of a sudden stall out do you just give up? No you sit down and see what you need to adjust to continue on the path forward. If you washing machine blows up do you just give up and start wearing dirty clothes, or do you sit down and come up with a game plan too fix it or replace it? There are always two options, one leads to permanent failure and the other eventually will lead you to success. Just because someone else figured out a quicker path to that success doesn’t mean you can’t do it too. You have to start doing things and living for yourself instead of others.

Now with that being said there is nothing wrong with having people in your life that inspire you. Just make sure though that you have them there for inspiration and not for motivation through envy. Surround yourself with positivity and all that it can bring you. Jealousy will chew you up, spit you out, and chew you again if you allow it. Instead of seeing someone as having more than you look at them from a different angle. Look at what they do in their life that drives them.Learn from them and let them inspire you and guide you. If you find yourself constantly envying that person then you need to move on and remove that person from your life because you are just hurting yourself.

You can do anything you want to you just have to really I mean really put your mind to it and you can’t be afraid that you will fail. Become the best you you can be and enjoy life to it’s fullest. You will notice that once you find your own happiness more and more things will fall into place for you. I believe in you and you should believe in you even more. Until next time …. What’s Your Confession?

Monday Madness (publication#16)

Happy Monday fellow readers and welcome to another publication of Monday Madness! I am ready for my crazy week as usual, and I think it’s going to be a great one. I have a lot of things on my plate this week but plan to tackle it head on.

So last week I did WOBO, which stands for week of beef only. I did great and not once did I go off course. I did a ratio of 1:1.5 meaning for every gram of protein I consumed I consumed 1.5 grams of fat. I did this for the sole purpose of trying to determine at what ration of fat to protein I feel the best. In conclusion I am inconclusive at this point. I felt fine all week but I did not see any amazing results. There were a couple days that I even found myself feeling a little hungry. I also was completely tired of ground beef by the end of the week. Which I found a little odd as I can have steak everyday and never get tired of it. I also did not see any change in the scale. I maintained my weight all week, and I chose not to measure. I was focusing more on how I was feeling and less on what I was removing from my body. That was not an easy task for me but I’m glad I did it.

This week I will be pretty much returning to my normal keto/carnivore diet. I don’t plan on focusing on my ratios but just focusing on my satiation. The new thing this week will be adding in exogenous ketones from pruvit. I am doing this for the purpose of evaluating my mental clarity and mood. I am not doing it for weight loss or so I can have a “cheat” day. I simply want to see what kind of mental support they can provide. I am hoping to see reduced anxiety, less depressive thoughts, and increased focus and clarity. I will update everyone next week on if a week of them is enough to see a change.

I’m really focusing on trying to figure out how to live things I want in life forward. I’m still searching for my why. I am working on building a planning portfolio that will help me focus and figure out these things. I am also continuing to build the positive people I need in my life to help me reach those goals. It literally does take a village, with a constant reminder that it’s up to me to make it happen.

In unrelated keto news I made the decision last week to move forward in home schooling my youngest two children. The more I researched it the more I realized it was the right choice for all of us. The political influence of public school where I live is very detrimental to what my kids are actually learning and I feel they are being set up for failure instead of success. So if any of my readers also home school and you have any pointers or tips please feel free to share them with me.

I hope that each and every one of you reading this have an amazing week. As always feel free to ask questions and share this blog with anyone you feel would benefit. Until Next Time…..Keep Ketoing On!

Blurring The Lines of Food

Happy Wednesday! Fellow readers we have made it through half this crazy week, and I for one am doing great at finding positivity throughout it. For those of you who are struggling with that seek it out with purpose and you will be glad you did. Today I want to talk about something we are all guilty of, blurring the lines of what foods are and what they are intended for.

We all have been drilled for years that we need fruits and veggies, grains, and proteins, and fat is bad. Told that we can’t eat this and we have to eat that. Then we stumble onto keto or carnivore and we got through it all again. You can’t eat that that it’s not keto, if you eat that your not carnivore. So many people being told no and how to do it when we are all individuals and we need to do the following: 1. DO WHAT WORKS FOR YOU 2. STOP COMPARING YOUR CHOICES TO OTHERS 3. LIVE YOUR BEST LIFE FOR YOU NO ONE ELSE.

Three things that we all need to tell ourselves every single day, and for some of us we need to say it way more than once a day. There is so much misinformation on the internet, and so many people who think they are experts. I can sit here with you every single day and tell you of my successes and be a guiding light, but I am no expert and it is not my job to tell you you are eating the wrong things. It is my job to support you and guide you to better choices, and choices that will work for you and how they fit in your best life.

Here is a perfect example. Fruit is not keto friendly. Total and complete lie. There are fruits that are higher carb and fruits that are lower carb. Depending on your carb restriction and how you react to fruit you can enjoy it. Many people on Keto find that berries work well. Here is another shocker an avocado is a fruit! You tell someone on keto they can’t have an avocado and you might want to run. Same things go for vegetables. Another one that is commonly misidentified is peanuts. Peanuts are not nuts at all they are actually in the legume family and for a lot of people they are inflammatory, but that doesn’t mean they are for everyone.

Take some time to really research your food. Don’t just determine what food group it belongs time. Really dig in and understand what if any nutrients you are getting from the food. Take the time to write down how you feel after you consume certain foods. Try an elimination diet if you suspect something in your diet is bothering you. If you don’t eat that food for a couple weeks and you feel better, and then you re-introduce it and you feel bad again chance are you just need to avoid it. Don’t look at food as bad or good, look at it as a source of nutrients and nothing more.

So the next time someone tells you not to eat that or your can’t eat that, tell them to piss off! Then remind yourself you are living your best you, and you want to take the time and look up why that person thinks you don’t need it. Most importantly until next time…Keep Ketoing On!

Yes You Can!

Happy Thursday fellow readers! So I have seen a lot of talk in the last few weeks about individuals saying your are doing great, but I can’t do that. I am hearing an abundance of can’t instead of yes. I use to be in that same group, but not anymore so I wanted a chance to talk to you about changing your outlook on things.

First, how do you know you can’t? Do you really have a legitimate reason to say you can’t or are you saying that because someone else put that in your head. Very few people actually have a legitimate reason to utter the word I can’t. The real and honest truth is your being reserved and you won’t. Something or someone is holding you back and it saddens me to think you are living that way. You need to take control of your life and instead of saying can’t how about saying I will try, and then progress even further and say I WILL DO IT!

Believe me when I tell you I was a leader of the I can’t club at one point in my life. I felt that everything I enjoyed I couldn’t do because I didn’t know how to do it or I didn’t know how to fit it into my life. I can’t sell a painting because who would buy it? I can’t write a blog who would read it? I can’t write a book! I can’t inspire others! All of these went in circles in my head constantly. All of these things are things that I believe in and things I have a passion for, but I was letting my worry of others opinions get in way of my happiness. I was letting people that I don’t even know weigh me down and keep me from my creativity and my passions.

So what changed? I woke up one day and realized I had so much negativity in my life that there was no way I could live my own life and ever be happy. So a day at a time I started looking for positivity and over the past few years of my life I have found some great people that inspire me to be me and chase after what I want. I now have the blog I have always wanted. I have put my paintings out there for the world to see and purchase. I have started a book. I have started taking steps to do what I love and teach what I believe in to inspire others. Am I making millions and rich from all of this, to be honest I haven’t made a dime, but I am so happy with what I am doing! I love sharing me with anyone and everyone. I enjoy being a positive step in the right direction for myself. I enjoy the simple things in life all thanks to the smallest changes. I’m thankful to be alive and be happy.

To tell yourself you can’t is plain and simple bullshit! I’m sorry for my language but that it how I feel about it. I will never tell myself that I can’t again. I may try and fail, and I may discover thing that are not for me but I will never not try! I can do what I want because I believe in me and who I am and what I want. If someone else doesn’t believe in me then I won’t let them be a part of my life. I refuse to allow negativity in, and when it tries to creep in anyway I take time to refocus and restart, because I don’t want to carry that with me.

Start small if you have to, but promise yourself your start trying and saying I will and eliminate the I can’t from your life. A great rule of thumb is eliminate the word from your vocabulary completely. If you really have to say no to something don’t say I can’t do that, instead try saying not today but how about next week. Then you didn’t say you couldn’t you just made it clear it didn’t work in your life at the moment but you also committed to doing it in the near future. That doesn’t mean keep putting it off either, remember we are never promised a tomorrow!

I can, YOU CAN, we all can! Remember that and remind yourself that every single day, and until next time…..Keep Ketoing On!

How Do I Start Keto?

Happy Thursday fellow readers! I hope everyone is have a great day. Today I wanted to address the elephant in the room. What is this Keto I keep talking about and how do I start it? Both are great questions and there are so many different ways to approach it. So I want to share how I discovered it and how I would explain it as simply as possible.

I didn’t wake up one day and be like OK I’m doing Keto. It was actually a complete accident that I discovered Keto and even when I discovered it I had no clue what it really was and how to do it. I first read about Keto in Jason Fung and Jimmy Moore’s book The Complete Guide to Fasting. My doctor had recommended fasting and this book kept mentioning how this thing called Keto worked well with intermittent fasting. So me being the inquisitive person I am started googling Keto. Little did I know it was about to embark me on this journey that has changed my health and my life so drastically.

Disclaimer…googling Keto will open up a flood gate of information. Some of this information will be great, some good, some ok, some bad, and some will be just plain out ridiculous. So how do you know what to listen to? For me it was finding videos on you tube and finding someone that could explain to me what it really was. Then as I started into my journey I learned who I wanted to follow and what was working for me. Believe me when I say there were ton of bumps along the road to get where I am today and to have the confidence I do today. I have joined many groups and left many of the same ones I thought were for me. My number one rule if there is any negativity I am out! I have had enough of that in my life and I refuse to have anymore!

INSIDER TIP #1……you do NOT need to buy a product to be successful on Keto. Now there are products that can be helpful on your journey and you will find ones you like, but you don’t have to have them to be successful. Also, there is not a single product on the market that allows you to eat what you want and maintain a state of Ketosis.

So let’s start with the basic and give a simple definition of what the keto diet is. The Keto diet is a low carbohydrate high fat diet that allows the body to use fat for fuel instead of sugar. It is important to understand that in order to achieve your low carb high fat diet you need to know the macro nutrients that are in what you are consuming. This can be done by using a tracking app and their are several that are free. I recommend using carb manager or cranometer. Ideally in the beginning you want to achieve 75% fat, 20% protein and 5% carbohydrates.

These are standard starting macros and as you progress on your path you will learn if you want to tweak those to better benefit you. Keto Clarity is a great book by Jimmy Moore that really helped me better understand that macros are not stuck in stone and you may need to adjust them to make them work for you. For example I discovered I do a little better with more like 80% fat and less carbs.I would even recommend that while you are researching Keto start tracking what your eating just so you can see where your starting ratios are at. You may choose to jump in with both feet like I did or ease yourself into the Keto macro world. I wanted to rip the bandaid off and to be honest I went through a week of hell for it (sugar withdrawal is real folks), but I knew if I didn’t do it that way I would never do it.

INSIDER TIP #2….Keto is not a weight loss diet! Keto is a diet that reduces inflammation and helps heal the body. A side effect of that for many is weight loss. Do not come in blazing saddles thinking you are going to drop 50 pounds in two months. Many people lose, but many also struggle to lose anything for months. You did not gain that weight in a month and your not going to lose it in a month either. I am 11 months into my journey and down 74 pounds. I have lost slowly and steadily but there has been months at a time where a single pound didn’t drop. Your body needs to heal itself. So don’t rush it and let the food heal you and in time results will come.

So now you know you need to research, you have some basic macros to start looking at, what’s next? Clean out your kitchen!!!!! If it is carb loaded, in a box, a frozen dinner, a sauce, junk food or anything with sugar in it get rid of it! If it is in your house your going to be tempted and in the first 7-10 days you will cave if you don’t have strong will power or an even stronger support system. Had my husband not been by my side pushing me I would have completely caved on day 5 which was the worst day for me. If it’s going to tempt you remove it. If it hasn’t been opened , donate it! If it has been opened toss it! Take time in your research (or read my sugar blog) about all the different hidden forms of sugars. You have to take the time become familiar with ingredients and if they are good or bad you can’t just assume because it looks good it is good. Labels are tricky (I also have a blog on this as well).

When you are researching your also going to hear a lot about net carbs and total carbs. To me this was the most confusing part and it took me weeks to figure out the art of net carbs. Then I started finding my groove and a light bulb went off. How is it I can eat this food and subtract out things from it and count it as a net carb? If it’s in the food and I ate it, it doesn’t just disappear. So net carbs went out the door for me and I became a total carb counter. I would recommend for anyone starting out just stick to total carbs it makes label deciphering easy and you will see better results in a quicker manner in my opinion. Now if you want to do net carbs you absolutely can. Net carbs is the principal of taking total carbs and you subtract out any dietary fiber and any sugar alcohols. This allows for a little more flex room in what you can and can’t eat. Total carbs doesn’t give as much flexibility but you end up eating a lot more Whole Foods that are better for you this way. Think of it on the concept of shopping the outer ring of the grocery store, meat, cheeses, and keto friendly veg and your good to go.

INSIDER TIP #3….butter (NOT margarine) is your friend! Many people struggle with the amount of fat you have to consume on Keto. This was not an issue for me as I have always loved fat. The problem for me was I was eating all the wrong ones. You need a good grass fed butter, coconut oil, olive oil, or even avocado oil. All of these are great choices, add to the taste of the food you are preparing, and will make you successful on your journey.

My last piece of advice for someone starting out is in addition to all the above….ASK QUESTIONS! I promise you someone will give you and answer, and if you don’t understand the answer ask again or find someone willing to try to explain it. There are great communities, live forums and boards that can take you under their wing and teach you the ropes. You can also reach out to me and I will help you in any way I possibly can. I will never turn someone with questions and wanting to learn away, and if I don’t have the answer chances are I know someone who does and can refer you to them.

Now there is a lot of information and science behind Keto and you can find all of that out there, but I wanted to just give you some basics and a few tips to start your journey. Remember a step forward is the best step you will ever take and I promise you there are some amazing benefits down the road waiting for you. Until next time…Keep Ketoing On!

I Can’t Eat That!

Good morning fellow readers! Hope everyone is set to have a wonderful weekend. So as I was enjoying my back deck time with my coffee this morning I ran across a picture on social media that sparked this topic. The picture was a women eating a salad while staring at her co-diners steak with envy in her eyes. I would almost bet she is either thinking it or maybe even said it out loud, I wish I could eat that! Well guess what you can, the only thing stopping you from eating that steak is you.

This goes for all kinds of foods not just steak. I have heard this and said this for years of my life. I can’t have that or I wish I could have that, but the truth is most of the time I could have that I just made an excuse as to why I couldn’t. I’ve tried so many different diets and trends that most of them left me feeling limited and deprived throughout. Keto has changed that for me and I no longer feel that there are foods that I can’t have. I now have the perception of their are foods I choose to eat and foods that I choose not to eat. I can have anything I want that is my option and my right as a human being. I choose not to eat grains, starches and sugars because of the side effects I have from eating those, but it doesn’t mean I can’t.

Even within the Keto lifestyle there are many people that say you can’t have that because it is not Keto. Well it may not be Keto to them because it doesn’t work for them. It doesn’t mean you can’t have it. If your not insulin resistant and your younger and your highly active your Keto may look way different than mine. All you really need to do is make sure you conscious about what your putting in your body and know the effect that it will have on you. There is nothing you can’t have, but there are many things you may choose to not have.

There has been a huge influx of “Keto” products in the market lately. Some of them are great products others are a little dirtier than I would like. Does that mean I can’t have them? Absolutely not! I need to pay attention to the ingredients and know what those ingredients will do to my body. If I truly want a keto protein bar I can have it, what I have to do is be aware that it doesn’t have whole ideal ingredients, it may spike my blood sugar, it may cause some stomach irritation, and its going to pretty much kill my macros for the day. If I can live with all that and I want it as a treat, then guess what I’m going to eat it. I’m never ever going to tell myself that I can’t have it again! I instead tell myself I choose not to have it today!

The longer I do the Keto lifestyle the easier it has became for me to tell people my preferences and what I want. I use to hate that and was ashamed to be so picky. I now know that I need to be picky because it is my body and my health that is at risk. So I will continue to read my labels and request my food a certain way because I am not willing to sacrifice my lifestyle and well being for anything. I also won’t preach to someone who thinks their salad and veggies is the best for them. If they feel good and believe they are benefiting from their way of eating then good for them. I want to spread the message of health and well being. Keto just happens to be my avenue of having both of those and I have measurable results to prove so.

The next time someone tells you that they can’t have something simply ask them why? If their response is I am on a diet they are more than likely depriving themselves. Then ask them can you not have it or do you really not want it? When they can look at you and say I choose not to eat that or I really don’t want that then you can see that they are in a better place nutritionally speaking. So remind yourself you can have whatever you want, you should choose what you don’t put in your mouth! Until next time Keep Ketoing On!