On this episode of the podcast, we discuss the ketogenic diet!
Here is the transcript of the episode:
Bill: Hey, what’s up everybody back here for another episode of the Philly strong podcast. It’s been a little while. I’m bill and also have Jess. Hey Bill! Hey Hey, today we’re gonna talk about nutrition. Basically, we’re going to talk about nutrition and a couple of popular topics right now in nutrition. I’ve been following nutrition trends for 20 years or so, and you’ll find that the same things kind of cycle in and out. Right now, one of the more popular topics is the Keto Diet. So we’ll talk about a little bit and what we know about and what we’ve seen with it. So what do we know about the Keto Diet? Do we know anything about it?
Jess: I would say, that this is, I mean, definitely people are starting to come in, they know about Keto and they are, what they know is, you know, protein heavy. So you’re eating mostly protein and you’re really, really, really low on carbs
Bill: Yeah, that’s about right. So the Keto Diet, basically if you want to break it down and that’s pretty much it, you’re almost eliminating carbohydrate and get in whatever carbs you’re getting, you’re getting mostly from vegetables and generally speaking, you don’t, you know, numbers will vary for people, but it’s going to be anywhere between like 10 50 grams of carbohydrates per day, and then your protein’s going to be moderate in your fat’s going to be the highest macronutrient and a Keto Diet. So just in a nutshell, the Keto Diet, what it does is switches your body’s preferred fuel source to ketones instead of glycogen. So your body’s going to preferentially, burn these ketones instead of burning sugar because you’re eliminating carbohydrate. Turns out that, carbohydrates are not essential for life or performance or any of that stuff. So you can actually be just fine without carbohydrates.
Bill: Fat, On the other hand, is essential for life and bodily functions and all kinds of interesting stuff, like your membranes are your nervous system and all that stuff, so you need fat for sure. Right. Okay, so why have you been doing Keto right now? Keto is becoming all the rage right now because it’s seen as a way to really rapidly reduce body fat and something that, it just becoming popular in my opinion, cause things are cyclical and nutrition world. And I get questions like, should I do Keto? Is it appropriate to do Keto. When I look at what people should do you, I always think like when you’re looking at any goal, like I want to lose, I want to lose 10 pounds in, for example. And I look at getting into any goal, you’re going to have to take an intervention and change something about what you’re doing in your normal, your normal habits, something that has to change if you want to reach a goal.
Bill: and so I like to look at three different types of interventions there, you know, for myself or if I’m helping somebody out and that’s good, better, best, like what’s a good way to reach my goal, what’s a better way to reach my goal? and what’s the best way to reach my goal. And Keto, like if I look at good, better, best, it might possibly be best in some situations. I mean, if for sure is in some situations because Keto as being like quote unquote proven in some medical conditions, it’s hard to say that when nutrition stuff, right, whether or not it’s proven or not, but it looks like it in some of them, in some like cancers and epilepsy anyway. Yeah, yeah. , but as far as like, say, losing 10 pounds, it could actually be best for somebody. It could be best. It’s a possibility that you may really operate way better. On a high fat, very low to almost zero carbohydrate diet where,
Jess: Yeah. Where do you think some of the, like where would the downside be or where would the challenges be?
Bill: Yeah, so the challenges with the Keto Diet, and this is a, it’s kind of an interesting take on it because, okay, here’s the challenge for the Keto Diet. The challenge for the keto diet would be, adherence and sustainability of the plan. Yeah. I, that’s the challenge I’ve seen with extreme choices in general, right? In general. And then extreme choices for sure in nutrition, approaches, nutrition strategies, right? Is that, you know, sustainability, meaning can you do it for a long period of time, with, adhering to it majority of the time, fine. So that’s what we’re always looking for. I think in a good sound nutrition plan cause even him as the best plan, you know, it’s going to get you, you know, looking lean and feeling great and you’re, you know, mind super clear, all that stuff. If you’re not able to sustain it for more than a few weeks or even a few months and then you go the other opposite direction, say probably weight back on or you feel worse now, then you have to evaluate that.
Jess: Right. That’s what I was going to say. That was, that’s kind of been my experience with it so far. Like in the past. So you were mentioning how is cyclical. There were like some diets in years past where it was definitely a low carb, really high protein, high fat. But then coming off that your body does not like to switch gears like that, have no sugar, then all the sudden introduce sugar back in and you do not, it doesn’t feel good. It’s like extremes. Yeah, that’s for sure. Like if you want to, if you want to feel the effect of, a food like a negative, like say super high sugar, eliminate it entirely and, and reintroduce you actually see how bad it really should make you feel. Yeah.
Bill: But even if it’s not bad, like just, just removing a macronutrient would, which may or may not be necessary, and then reintroduce it. Your body will take some time to adapt to that macronutrient again. Yeah. And that’s like, so that’s what I look at as far as the challenges with the Keto Diet and, the reason why I think that that is challenging and it’s not to say that like if something’s challenging, you shouldn’t do it like, that’s definitely not what I’m saying at all with the Keto Diet. Cause that’s one way you could look at this as like, well so who cares if it’s challenging is the best thing for me to do. I want to do it. Fair enough. Fair enough. That’s fine. But is it necessary, it’s like the Keto diet going to get you from like 60% effectiveness to 100% effectiveness or is it going to get you from like 90 or 92% some arbitrary number, like somewhere high percentage to 100%.
Bill: Cause if it’s going to get you from 90 to 100% and a hundred percent better obviously, but your adherence is not going to be high enough to sustain that and then you’re going to be down at like 30% effectiveness at some point cause you’re off the rails. You haven’t had sugar for a while and you go eat a dozen donuts or something like that, which definitely happens. And where you deprive yourself of certain things, then you’re worse off, you’re worse off in the long run then you were in the beginning. Right. Right. That makes sense. Yeah, totally. , so, okay, we’re kind of a little over the place and where does this all goes? So that’s talking about like the downfalls of it a little bit more on what it looks like to apply the Keto Diet. So when you apply the Keto Diet, you’re doing it, you need to get into a state of state of ketosis.
Bill: So ketosis basically means that your body is switching from burning glycogen, like I said in the beginning to now burning ketones. So your body has to get in a state of Ketosis. So you basically, eat that low, low, almost no carbohydrate diet for a period of time. You Get the strips, you pee on them, they tell you whether or not you’re in Ketosis or not. And then you’ve reached ketosis. Your body has switched. That kind of like transition phase tends to be fairly difficult. You feel sluggish. It can be, it can, it varies on how long it takes. How many days do you think it takes? It varies, and I don’t know enough about the range of days and stuff like that, but I will say that it depends on your body type, how, how much glycogen you store naturally. And you can get a rough idea of, you know, what that is.
Bill: If you tend to hold a lot more body fat than you’d probably hold glycogen really well. If you tend to run really lean naturally, then you probably don’t hold as much glycogen. So if you don’t hold as much glycogen, it’s going to be less time to ketosis. If you hold onto more glycogen, it’s going to be more time to get ketosis, but you know, anywhere between like two days to a week where you’re transitioning, right? And that tends to be the most miserable part of the Keto Diet. Now, once you get past that, it tends to feel really, really good. Like burning ketones tends to feel really, really good. , people say they feel more clearheaded, they can go longer between meals. They feel like more satiated, right? So there’s a lot of benefits, to the Keto Diet. But where the trouble comes in, in sustainability and adherence is that it just takes you going out of Ketosis, a period of time to then have to go back through that process of getting back into Ketosis it’s not the same as like if you’re just, doing a more moderate approach to macronutrients.
Bill: Macros, of course, protein, carbohydrates, and fat. If you’re doing like a more moderate approach, meaning that you have a balance, you have some carbs, you have some protein, you have some fat in your diet, then if you like go over your calories, that’s an easy fix. Like you just like pull back calories a little bit, so, and you’re not like, maybe you don’t, you don’t lose the weight you intended for the week, but you’re not really, you don’t feel much different. You may feel a little more full or something and you’d just come back down the next day and you’re cool. It just takes one day or the next meal and you’re back on track. That’s like the alternative. That’s what happens if you’re eating more balanced set of like something, so, yeah, yeah, exactly. Yeah. So keto specifically, in the, in this case, like that’s what it looks like to not be as adherent on Keto is that it’s like you gotta start all over.
Bill: You got to start all over and you got to start all over and do that enough times. It becomes really hard to even try because you have to like I said, that titration up to, get into ketosis tends to be kind of miserable. You feel light, you feel like foggy headed and not that much energy because your body is literally shifting fuels. Yeah. It’s like shifting fuels, So it takes a little bit of time to do that and that’s, I think, what you have to consider if you’re considering Keto as a plan, I’m all for it. It’s cool if you know that your adherence is going to be 100%, it has to be 100% for Keto. You can’t be in a gray area. It’s not like you can go, well, you know, I’m going to be keto for six days a week.
Bill: So you hit your numbers for Keto, whatever they might be. It might be like, you know, generally the numbers, right? It might be like 5% carbohydrate, then I’m just doing numbers here are quick or like a huge percentage of fat, let’s say 70% fat and then the rest protein. That’s about right for a split for Keto. , and so you’re going to do that six days a week, but then on Friday you’re going to go out and have some pasta and a couple of glasses of wine that doesn’t work because then you’re going to spend the next, four or five days after that to get back into Ketosis, spend one day in Ketosis and then go screw up again the next week. Whereas, and so that’s the problem with Keto is like, you may actually be 100% adherent six days a week and have one day like, all right, today’s not Keto. Well then you’re not doing a Keto diet. You’re not getting the benefits of the Keto Diet. No matter of fact, you’re really gonna start harming yourself mentally having to go through that process of getting back into ketosis each time. Right, right.
Jess: I was just going to say, I think part of it is that it becomes a, like you’re doing a thing, so you know you’re kind of doing something that’s in fashion or that you’re hearing more about it gets popular and then you’re like, it feels good to do something specific. And sometimes it’s something that’s like challenging where eating balanced foods. It’s not flashy. It’s not like there’s nothing romantic about it. It’s just kind of like doing, being consistent, eating balanced meals and it doesn’t have that like thing, that element. Not Sexy. Yeah, it’s not sexy!.
Bill: It’s not, it’s not right. It’s definitely, it’s definitely not. , and so man, I don’t know. I think, that like it’s a good way to look at anything that you can adhere to longterm. Like maybe it’s not going to be as flashy man. Like it’s the same thing. Like to go a little bit like off of what we’re talking about today is like working out like what’s better to work out six, seven days a week, 100% for four months. Burnout, maybe likely get injured. Yeah, yeah. Get injured. Those four months, man, you’re going to be rocking and rolling. Your numbers are going to go up on your, lifts. , your conditioning is going to be off the charts and your central nervous, it’s going to fall apart. Wheels are going to fall off the bus and you’re probably gonna get hurt and then you’re either going to have to take a period of time off or you’re going to be like, I’m never working that like yet again in my life.
Bill: And then maybe you don’t work out for a year or you never work out again. Okay. So that’s one approach or you workout three or four days a week. You never, you know, reach your potential of lifting the most way you possibly could ever in your life. You never like win a marathon, but you’re still working out when you’re 80. I’ll take that. I’m good with that. Like, and it’s a balance, right? Did you can’t go so far the other way either. Well, I’m gonna walk on the elliptical for 10 minutes twice a week cause like, all right, well we’ve got to figure something out that’s more than that. But less than killing yourself. It’s the same thing with nutrition. You got to pick something that you can adhere to and it’s to kind of go right from that analogy of the workout, right.
Bill: Back to nutrition is like, you can’t just say, well, I’m going to eat Broccoli and now I’m on my way. No, you’re not on your way. Maybe, maybe like if you never eat any vegetables, eating some Broccoli every day is better, but it’s like 0.5% better and we need a little bit bigger buy-in. They eating some more Broccoli. For sure, right. But you don’t need to be like all in, all the time. All in all the time. So, okay. I think that’s about as far as we need to go into Keto. I, there’s plenty more with keto. There’s plenty of books and blog posts and everything else. It’s like a synopsis of what Keto is, what it looks like to do it, what it looks like to adhere to it, and some of the downsides of it. So one Jess, why don’t you talk a little bit about kind of our approach to nutrition in general.
Jess: Sure. So, we definitely are talking about eating whole foods. So that’s one of like the main philosophies is eating whole foods. So that basically means if you think about looking at the grocery store and what foods do you find the perimeter of the grocery store, it’s going to be your fruits, your vegetables, your meat section, you have some dairy and eggs, and that’s all food, like where it’s going to break down so it doesn’t have additives and preservatives. When you go into like the middle of the grocery store, that’s where the food, all of the additives, preservatives, it’s super processed. All the ingredients you can’t pronounce, that’s where those foods are. So one, we’re not trying, you know, we don’t want you to just eating, drinking shakes or anything like that. It’s like eating real food. And then, you know, we’ve mentioned it kind of a few times, but like the, the idea of balance, and getting a little bit of those, three macronutrients in there.
Jess: So that’s going to be your protein, your carbohydrates, and your fat. And because each of those are going to serve a purpose as far as your body functions, how you’re working out, how you feel, and so it’s not pulling back on any one of those. It’s making sure you have some of all of them and in the right proportion. And then as far as quantity of food, it’s, we really talk about, you know, what is the right amount of food to sustain your life. So we’re trying to make sure we have a nice lean body mass and then reduced fat. So the idea is for us to kind of have a lower body fat percentage, and kind of working on, you know, managing to a calorie total and balancing your macronutrients and working out will help us get into that lean body mass and reducing body fat. It’s kind of cool. General idea. So, so how do you eat?
Jess: I would say I use that as my goal. So I target 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein, 30% fat. The same thing that I, talk about with all of my nutrition clients. So that’s my goal. And I would say that I reach that 75% of the time, so I’m not 100% adherent, all the time. And that’s working actually, well for me. So I’m actually seeing, I’m seeing kind of my muscles more muscle definition, lower body fat percentage than I was before. So it was a shift for me in like the past year, as far as getting into the right macronutrient breakdown, that was kind of probably my biggest shift, and then outside of that, calories, I mean, I would say during the week I’m more adherent and it all depends on how much I plan. Like all of my clients, like every single one of my clients, if I prep, I’m good to go and when I don’t.
Bill: Yeah, it’s good. I mean, so what does 75% adherence look like? Are you talking about 75% adherence for like a seven day period or 75% adherence in a day period? Or what do you mean?
Jess: I would say like in a week I would say I’m probably hitting, yeah, like getting calories and like either or like maybe my calorie total will be the same, but I’m not quite balanced on my macros or most of the time I would say I’m within 75%, probably 80, 85% of my calories. Okay, and it’d be like if I have a night, I’m drinking a lot of wine. That’s where I get thrown, like way off the bus. But yeah, other than that, like (Bill) Let’s talk about your circle of friends a little bit. Food Wise, I feel pretty good and honestly, what I’ve been using as a gauge much more, lately is listening to how my body feels. So I love the conversation about like how it feels when you reintroduce sugar. And I just had a client say to me this week, she like kind of went off the rails, not she went off track for a day, two days, whatever around Thanksgiving. Yep. We all did. Sure. And, but she actually is really starting to pay attention to how she feels and she’s like, I felt horrible for two days and that’s really important to slow down and like pay attention to like how all this foods make you feel. cause that’s really big picture. You want to feel good and your food is, you know, helping you along the way.
Bill: No, I 100% agree with that. Like, and that’s what’s really interesting is that kind of experience when you start putting good stuff in your body the majority of the time and then reintroduce something that maybe you like, were consuming a great deal of before you started paying attention. Whether that’s sugar, here’s the culprits, right, whether that’s sugar, high-fat foods, alcohol, candy. Yeah, there they are. Right, there may be one or two other things, right? But mostly it’s that ice cream name it, that’s sugar, just like candy and stuff. So you take that stuff out for a period of time, you get real diligent when your nutrition and then you’re like, oh, you know what, I’m going out with my friends and we’re going to have some pizza, have a couple beers or go out with my family and just eat, go to friendly’s or whatever and eat some ice cream and you have it and it’s cool, it’s fine.
Bill: but then you feel bad like bad, like not bad, like guilty. Your body feels like, man, I don’t like the way that feels then that’s an easy fix. Like all right, I’m not going to do that often. Right? Like is it worth it? Is it is a trade-off and is it worth it and sometimes it’s worth it. Sometimes like ice cream, it’s like it’s worth it. It’s worth it. Sometimes if I want to drink some wine and sometimes it’s worth it and like I know that tomorrow I have a headache or I know that like I might not lose the weight I intend to do this week, but going out to to Sushi when my son was worth it, it was great and it’s cool. And that’s like, that is, that’s like a healthy relationship with food. Yeah. And it’s a sustainable way to have health and longevity, and all the stuff you’re looking for out of nutrition and like preserving and adding lean body mass and keeping your body fat reasonably low and generally just reaching your goals. You know, not everybody has weight loss as a goal. Right? Right. When we think nutrition and, 90% of the nutrition stuff you see in the supermarket on like the new stands and stuff like that, it’s all geared towards weight loss. When we hear the word nutrition, most of the time we’re thinking weight loss, but that’s not the definition in nutrition. Nutrition is to nurture your body and give the body the fuel it needs to sustain and like hopefully thrive.
Jess: Right. That’s, you and I have had that conversation recently. Yeah. You’re talking about like the quality of the meat we were buying and things like that. Cause those shifts, like sometimes you just make a shift in trying to get lean and trying to get lean and then you start thinking bigger picture. Am I using nutrition to make sure I’m healthy and avoid disease? Some things like that. So it becomes, it can become a bigger picture, you know, beyond getting lean or how you look.
Bill: Yeah. Yeah. And it is. And what is like really interesting is that you can get to this a bunch of different approaches. But for me, if we’re going back to the beginning when we’re talking about with like different, well, keto specifically, there’s a million different diet approaches, right? Keto, Atkins, Paleo, gluten-free, you name it. Right. Okay. It’s adherence and like sustainability of it. It’s in my opinion, way more sustainable to be able to include all different types of food and my nutrition plan, and have an idea of generally where I want to be as far as my macronutrients and my calorie load. And then I have some play in there. I’m good to go. Right.
Jess: I think one of the things too, and sustainability is like you’re not just, we’re not just saying hang on, but if you can get consistent and repeat some of the processes, we also talk about like behavior modification with our nutrition. So making those small choices, whether it’s , you know, I don’t know, having something to eat in the morning so you’re not starving at lunch and you eat like way overeat just consistently, okay, I’m going to wake up, I’m going to have a snack on my way. And you just kind of start building a consistent, getting consistent with how you’re eating and then that just becomes a habit. So you get used to it. You don’t have to think about it anymore and then you’re slowly, slowly, slowly improving your habits.
Bill: Absolutely. Absolutely. That is man, that’s the biggest secret of reaching any goal. That is just not the flashiest thing, but it works. Small changes over a long period of time works the best. It just does. Like it just does. It’s like if you’re thinking about, you know, if you’ve ever, if you’ve ever been in here, did goal setting session with me or you know, talking to over the years at an intro here at the gym and we’re talking about getting your goals. I want to talk about a train and how it turns around. When a train is facing north, it doesn’t just shift midway and go south. It’s a gentle curvature of the railway and then it’s turning. That’s how it goes. Cause otherwise, that train would fall tracks if it turns tries to sharp turn like that. That’s what it’s like when you reach your goals.
Bill: It’s small little steps and it’s like two steps forward sometimes in one step back. Right. That’s part of the process too. It’s leaving room for that stuff and knowing that that is, it’s not like you’re screwing up. That is actually part of the process, but that’s how it works. And if you can like, have that approach and know that it’s a long term thing, this is not a six-week deal. This is not a, I’m going to get in shape for the wedding. It’s fine. You can take it that direction sometimes, but it’s more sustainability and stuff like that. Yeah, so cool. It’s good to be back talking with you guys and you’ll be hearing from us, every week. Oh yeah, we’re in. So if you need something to put on to lull you to sleep at night, just put us right here. And we’ll talk Keto until you fall asleep. Alright, Thank you. Next time. See guys. Bye!