So what do we eat? Part 1.

The first thing you should know about Tom and I is we have the ability to eat the same thing over and over and over. This makes meal planning super easy. I’m breaking this topic into parts because I think about our meal planning and shopping list in distinct parts as well.

Part 1 is what goes in our lunch bags to take to the office. This is definitely the easiest chunk of the day for staying on the keto diet. At least for me because my office doesn’t feed me very often. Tom on the other hand, has lunches provided at least once a week if not twice, so staying in line is harder for him. He has to balance the social/career implications of being the weird guy that brings his own lunch to a catered meeting or turns down opportunities to dine with his bosses.

These salad containers keep all our veggies fresh. If you’re big into taking salads to work, then I highly suggest getting one of these. They are available on Amazon.

Breakfast and Lunch: Monday – Friday

I’m a grazer. I like to eat lots of small meals, so I pack a lot of snacks. Honestly, I don’t really know if Tom is a true grazer or if he just goes with the flow and eats how I eat because I typically pack the lunches. We have made a couple of changes to our lunch bags since Day 1 of keto, so I’ll present both versions to you.

Day 1 Lunch Bag:

  • Protein shake made with unsweetened coconut milk and protein powder
  • Two eggs scrambled in bacon grease with one slice of bacon
  • A green salad with cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, olives, and feta with 45g salad dressing
  • Sparkling water
  • 2 oz of cheese slices or cubes
  • 1 oz of almonds

Day 141 Lunch Bag:

  • Double Espresso with 2 Tbsp MCT oil
  • Protein shake made with unsweetened coconut milk, a different brand of protein powder (more fat, less carbs), and 100g frozen strawberries
  • A green salad with cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, olives, and feta with 45g salad dressing
  • Sparkling water
  • 2 oz of cheese slices or cubes
  • 1 oz of almonds

You’ll notice that I’ve swapped out my bacon and eggs for MCT oil and there’s a couple reasons for that change. First, MCT oil is good fuel for your brain. MCT stands for medium-chain triglyceride which is a type of lipid (fatty acids plus glycerol) that composed of 6-12 carbon molecules, aka a type of fat. Long-chain triglycerides have more than 12 and short chain have less than 6. What is special about MCT oil is that the body cannot store medium-chain triglycerides, so it has to use it up as energy immediately. So taking MCT oil in the morning, when you’ve fasted overnight, provides quick energy with no carbs! It tastes like absolutely nothing. I have always had black coffee and this doesn’t affect the taste at all. The texture because slightly slippery, but it’s not really noticeable. The oil is also great for mental focus and alertness as the brain loves to consume MCT oils (more about that when I get to discussing Alzheimer’s).

The second reason I swapped from bacon and eggs to MCT oil is that it’s a lot less work. Three pumps of the bottle versus cooking bacon and scrambling eggs. If you like the idea of getting to eat bacon and eggs everyday, by all means, go for it. It was super tasty and filling. We would prepare a workweek’s amount of bacon and eggs on Sunday afternoon, divvy it into small microwaveable cups, and take them to work all week. It worked really well, just add like 1 tsp of water to the eggs before microwaving and it’ll keep them from getting rubbery.

Want more carbs?

My Day 141 lunch bag has a total of 23g of net carbs (carbs minus fiber) which already exceeds the 20g recommended for the day that I told you about earlier. It’s mostly “wasted” in the strawberries I put in my protein shake in the morning. If I gave those up, I’d be at 14g of net carbs with a precious 7g left for dinner.

Unless there was a way to get away with more carbs…

We generally exercise after work. I teach Jazzercise 3-4 times a week in the evenings and we attend ~3 vinyasa power yoga classes a week. We also walk our dogs after dinner every night, which I think is one of the most beneficial things we do for ourselves and our fur-babies.

When you exercise regularly, you can get away with a few more carbs in your diet. I can stay in ketosis up to about 50 carbs a day. Many people cannot and this will vary person-to-person. This is why you have to test with the urine strips. My advice is to start super-strict with the carbs, give your body a couple weeks to get somewhat used to the diet, then start adding a little bit back in at a time and see what doesn’t diminish your ketone levels. The urine strips give you a scale of how far in ketosis you are (light pink, you’re barely there; dark purple, you’re way in ketosis). If you’re peeing dark purple, then you can likely afford a few more carbs in your diet.

Photo by Oleg Magni on Pexels.com

We started the keto diet without strawberries in our protein shakes to keep carbs low, then decided we could afford them in our dietary budget. I wanted the strawberries in my diet because of their anti-inflammatory properties in addition to their deliciousness. We were able to add them back in and stay in ketosis, so we’ve kept them.

Stay tuned…

For us, the “lunch bag” is the easiest part of our meal planning. We might get crazy every once and a while and change the salad dressing up or add some bell pepper in there, but otherwise, that’s pretty much what we’ve been eating for years. Before keto, I had a granola bar instead of bacon and eggs and we had fruit in the afternoon instead of almonds and cheese, but those switches weren’t too traumatizing (we miss our fruit though to be honest).

The harder meals to plan for us are dinners for the weeknights and then, of course, planning to stay on track over the weekends, so I’ll discuss those in the next couple posts.

Thanks for reading!

As always, I welcome your comments, questions, and feedback.

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5 thoughts on “So what do we eat? Part 1.

  1. Love these, but tell me about these pee strips! I am into this day 3 and feeling pretty good. Like you I can eat the same thing over and over again so that part has been easy enough.

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    1. Hello, thank you for your comment. The urine strips allow you to measure whether you are in ketosis and how deeply. They’re very easy to use. They change color and the color relates to how many ketones are circulating in your blood stream. It’s not perfect because it’s actually measuring how many ketones are being flushed out by the kidneys, but it’s a good approximation. You can purchase them here: https://www.kissmyketo.com/?rfsn=2719727.833c74 and use my name (kellykore) as the promo code to get a discount or you can find them on amazon. Thanks for reading!

      Like

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