Keto Korner

February 15, 2017

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Genetics for Personalized Nutrition and Keto Breakfast Bowl Recipe

Happy Hump Day.  Hoping that you are all doing well as we move into the back half of February….this means that March is closer than January and that Spring is just about in sight!!  Is anyone else as excited as me about that?  OK, I’m pushing it I know, but work with me people - as you’ve probably figured out by now, winter is not my favourite season.  Having said that being housebound has it’s advantages - over the past two weeks, I have done a deep dive into personalized nutrition for a talk I am delivering to a group of Executives and their partners this Thursday morning.  I have always been a believer that what works for one person won’t necessarily work for the next but never before have we had access to the tools to quantify what those differences may be like we do now.  Let me explain….

Your personal genetic code holds a wealth of information about your body, how it works and what it needs to function at its best, she of it is understood, much of it is not.  Over the past few years an increasing number of companies have been mining this information and gradually interpreting it in ways that make it useful to you and I.  I work with one of these companies and so am able to offer my clients insight into what their genes have to say about what type of diet might be most useful to them.  I became fascinated with this recently when I came across a study conducted at Stanford University that showed that when two groups of women were put on a weight loss plan (Group A on a standard Fat Loss Diet and group B on a diet based on a few of their genetic markers) the group with the diet matched to their DNA lost 2 and 1/2 times more weight than the first group!  How crazy is that??  But it actually makes sense - take me for example - when I look at my results I can see the following:

  1. I have a variant of a gene (UCP1) that sets me up to have a lower resting metabolic rate than the average person - this means that in order for me to lose weight I need to create a greater caloric deficit through diet and exercise than the average person.
  2. I also (and this is not what I was hoping for) have a variant of the FTO gene (aka the obesity gene!) that makes it easier for my body to store extra energy (other people might call that fat) - I need to watch my saturated fat intake and actually follow a moderate to high protein diet while at the same time…..
  3. Keep my carbohydrate intake in check as I have an elevated risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes (no surprise there, both my grandmother and mother developed T2D later in life).
  4. Keep my Caffeine intake below 200 mg a day (small cup of coffee) as I am sensitive to caffeine - excess caffeine consumption may set me up for high blood pressure down the road.

There’s more in my report but that’s probably enough super personal information for now lol.  Gee my cup runneth over….low resting metabolic rate, elevated risk of obesity, Type 2 Diabetes and high blood pressure (good thing I’ve been active all these years!)…..but here’s the good news…armed with this information I can make adjustments now before I get into any real trouble.  You see, your genes are only part of the story - they tell you what your predispositions are but in most cases the decisions you make about your diet, and your lifestyle have a huge impact on whether or not those genes get expressed.  Granted, I have to be a bit more cautious about my diet, I do not get to eat a high fat ketogenic diet with impunity and I have to minimize my caffeine consumption but I have tools at my disposal (like my trusty Keto//OS) to hack my way into Ketosis and keep my cravings in check - I get to eat lots of protein (which I love) and I know what trouble signs to look out for.  All in all, I feel pretty lucky

So as of now my personal plan will look like this:

  • include daily exercise,
  • I will modify my diet to reduce my total fat intake to reduce overall calories
  • focus more on monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats than saturated fats (although I will still include some)
  • increase my protein intake to 30-35% (from my current 20%)
  • still eat LOTS of vegetables and pretty much stay away from grains
  • commit to no more than 200 mg (1 small cup) of caffeine a day
  • enjoy daily Keto//OS shakes to keep my energy high and my cravings in check, build muscle mass and burn fat to offset my lower than average RMR.

Bear in mind that other lifestyle choices can and will also have a major impact on my outcome and even the expression of my genetic code - sleep and stress management are also crucial to getting the best results.  If you’re interested in looking into your genetics shoot me an email via my website NathalieNiddam.com and we can discuss your options.

To get your Keto//OS go to canfuel.pruvitnow.com/ca  and place your order - KetoMax is the Maui Punch Formula and provides, to date, the most powerful increase in ketones of the three formulas - it actually outperformed anything else currently on the market in an independent lab study that will soon be published.  Other great Keto//OS Formulas are the Orange Dream (2.1) and Chocolate Swirl (3.0)

I hope that you’ve enjoyed this week’s post!  To finish off I am sharing with you the most popular breakfast post from my Instagram feed from last week.  I also share these weekly in Facebook Live posts on KetoNat my Facebook page along with other health and biohacking tips.  This week I’ll be talking about a new recipe plus my favourite stress management tool - Saturday morning at 9 am (EST) I’d love to see you if you can make it!

Have a spectacular week!!

Yours in good health,

 

Avocado Blueberry Keto Breakfast Bowl

Super quick to throw together as long as you’ve pre made your grain free granola or seed mix ahead of time. 

Ingredients

1/4  avocado cubed

1/4 cup frozen organic blueberries

1 serving seed mix (see below)

1Tbsp Almond or Sesame (Tahini) Butter

1 TBSP KetoKreme OR 1 tsp Erythritol, or a few drops of Stevia (see below)

2-3 Tbsp Plain Full Fat Yogurt (Pinehedge is my favourite brand) OR 1 oz of Full Fat Coconut Milk

Seed Mix (12 servings)

3/4 Cup organic Hemp Seeds

1/2 cup Chia Seeds

1/2 Cup Pumpkin Seeds

1/2 Cup Sunflower Seeds

1/2 cup Shredded Unsweetened Coconut

35 grams Cacao Nibs Unsweetened (optional)

1 TBSP Cinnamon

Directions

Mix the almond butter and MCT oil with whatever sweetener you are using in a small bowl to make your drizzle.

Place the avocado, blueberries, seed mix in the bowl and top with yogurt or coconut milk and drizzle.

Note: This is a hearty breakfast delivering 411 calories of which 10 grams of net carbs,  32 g Fat and 17g protein.  If this is still too many carbs for you, you can reduce or eliminate the blueberries or even replace them with raspberries - only 2 net g carb vs 4 g)

February 10, 2017

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Paradox of our Time: Overfed & UnderNourished - Valentine Keto Ice Cream

As I sit and write this today, a thin layer of ice collects on every surface outside my window - freezing rain is one of Mother Nature’s most subtle weapons - seemingly harmless rain falls from the sky and coats the world in a beautiful yet dangerous layer of ice.  A paradox of sorts - like a thorn on a rose…there are no shortage of these in the natural world around us but our topic today centres around a man made paradox, the idea of being overfed and simultaneously  undernourished.

 

This may not be the first time you have heard about the idea that in North America and increasingly globally as access to fast and convenience food is going up, an increasing number of us, young and old are finding ourselves “victims” of this paradox.  A condition that is at the root of many preventable diseases and that more often than not is often accompanied by  obesity. There are stats that show that disadvantaged people (homeless, poor, unemployed) are obese, while other studies show that people from upper economic circles are also increasingly obese….adults are obese and far too many children as well.   If there was ever an argument that refuted the “calorie is a calorie” position of fast food and soft drink companies it is this one….you don’t have to be a scientist to understand that a glass of Coke delivering 100 calories is NOT equal to a glass of high quality protein powder blended with 1/4 avocado, 1 cup of baby spinach and 1/4 cup of berries.  They do not elicit the same hormonal response in your body nor do they deliver the same building and repair materials.  

So.  What to do?  When it comes to people without means, it will take education, programs that provide access to nutritious food and other solutions beyond the scope of this document .  For those of us who have the means to do better we must educate ourselves and equip ourselves with the resources to understand the nutrient density of what we are eating and continue to improve it wherever and whenever possible.  This concept also ties in neatly to the principles around a reduced carbohydrate and higher fat nutrition strategy.  It is no coincidence that as you start to remove breads, pastas, baked goods, and grains from your plate it frees up a whole lot of space for more vegetables and removes a major source of calories that for many people is more than they can use.  Plus, as we age, our tolerance and ability to properly process carbohydrates diminishes so they often end up showing up as fat in our blood (triglycerides) and fat around our middles.   Yes, this is yet another invitation for you to consider a reduced carbohydrate lifestyle to get to your healthiest self.  For some, a Ketogenic Diet is appropriate and achievable but it’s not appropriate for everyone.  That being said, most if not all of us would do better with fewer empty carbs and more of the good stuff on our plate.  Here are a few easy things you can do to work towards this goal:

  • Eat Vegetables - a lot of them - aim for at least 6-8 cups a day focusing primarily on non starchy varieties - so lots of leafy greens, cruciferous (broccoli, cauliflower, kale, brussel sprouts, cabbage) and eat as wide a variety as you can manage.
  • Eat appropriate portions of the best protein you can afford - the palm of your hand and the thickness of a deck of cards is a great place to start for most people (unless you are an athlete in which case you may need a bit more). If you’re a numbers person figure about 0.8grams per kg of your target weight or, if you’re an athlete up to 1.2 grams is good for most people.
  • Eat a reasonable amount of healthy fat - before you go diving for the carbs to fill up on, have some good fat which will help your body to absorb vitamins and nutrients from your vegetables and help you to feel fuller and more satisfied. In descending order:  Extra Virgin Olive oil, olives, avocado oil, avocados, coconut oil, coconut milk, some nuts and seeds (raw not roasted and salted), whole eggs and, if you tolerate dairy some full fat organic dairy can also be good.  The battles over saturated fat rage on but unless you have a genetic issue with processing fats there is far more evidence that points to excess carbs and sugar as health culprits than fats.  That being said, if you’re not sure just go mediterranean - extra virgin olive oil, cold water fatty fish, nuts and seeds (in moderation) and avocados should form the bulk of your fat consumption.
  • Starchy Carbs - start with vegetables - sweet potatoes, carrots, winter squash…all of these are great options and come full of nutrients to nourish your body.
  • Noodles - ok, I know this is not a food group however it is one of those things that people miss the most on low carb plans. The good news is that Shiratake Noodles are now readily available (at Low Carb Canada for one)and they are getting better and better with every passing year.  The Zeroodle brand also includes some great pastas made with legumes that deliver protein, fibre and almost no net carbs - serve them with veggies and healthy fats and they make a great satisfying meatless meal.

And our last concept of the day - eat less.  Under eat.  Just a bit.  You will live longer, be healthier and feel better if you do.  At this point, a number of you would probably like to bop me upside the head.  I know.  It’s not that easy.  But I’m here to tell you that if you eat real, nutrient dense food, hydrate and start to move a bit more it is doable.  One of the strategies I use with my clients is a food diary using a free app like myfitnesspal.  You get to enter your age, height, target weight, your activity level and goals and it will give you a rough idea of what your caloric intake should be.  It’s imperfect but it’s a great place to start.  Aim for 1 lb a week to start, nothing too aggressive - slow and steady wins this race…every time.  

And the next strategy, (you knew this was coming) is Keto//OS -

  • Because it can balance your blood sugar it can help reduce cravings and manage appetite.
  • Because it increases energy and focus it can help you to move more and stay committed to your goals.
  • Because it supports lean muscle mass and fat burning as you lose a few pounds, start to move more and eventually exercise you will build on your success and start to make gains you never dreamed of.

Above all you need a plan, a goal, patience and kindness towards yourself.  You did not get here in a month, it will take time to see the results you seek.  Time and tweaks - as we discussed last week, stick to your plan for a month and then adjust.  Next week we address planning for success starting with:  The Pantry Purge.

To order Keto//OS for yourself go to: canfuel.pruvitnow.com/ca

and, if you want a bit more insight into how it works in your body, watch the video at canfuel.experienceketo.com/ca

As always, thank you for reading and thank you so much for your comments and emails! 

Follow me on social media for recipes, meal ideas and more - see links below.

Instagram: @nathalieniddam

Facebook:  KetoNat

Website:NathalieNiddam.com

Did you think I forgot?  Not on your life!  Next Tuesday is Valentine’s Day - how convenient that KetoMax is pink!  In black and red packaging - how perfect!  What better gift than the gift of better energy and health?   Order yours soon so that you can surprise your Valentine with an energizing shake on the big day.  In the meantime, here’s that recipe I promised:

Valentine’s Day Keto Ice Cream Recipe - Chocolate Coconut

This is a variation on Bulletproof Ice Cream - not for the faint of heart the bottom line here is if you're going to eat ice cream make it count.  This recipe is incredibly decadent and nutrient dense full of great fats, protein and sweetened with non insulin spiking natural sweetener of your choice.  Play with the sweetness and chocolate intensity to get it to your liking just be careful…too many taste tests and you’ll need to make another batch! 

What you need:

A High Speed Blender

Small Jars ideally with lids - this ice cream does freeze solid so it’s hard to serve out of a large container lol.

Ingredients

*4 whole eggs

*4 egg yolks

7 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Coconut Oil

7 Tablespoons Raw Cacao Butter

3 Tablespoons plus 2 tsp MCT Oil (Bulletproof Brain Octane is optimal here)

1 Cup Full fat Coconut Milk (preferably canned like Native Forest or Cha’s Organics)

4 Tablespoons Raw Unsweetened Cacao Powder (or more depending on your taste)

1 Tsp vanilla Powder

1 tsp Cinnamon (optional but adds nice complexity)

4 TBSP Xylitol or Erythritol or Lukuna

Unsweetened Shredded Coconut to garnish (optional)

7 tsp Raw Unsweetened Cacao Nibs

 Directions

Place everything except for the coconut and cacao nibs in a high speed blender and blend till smooth…..pour into individual jars and then carefully mix in cacao nibs if using and sprinkle shredded coconut on top for garnish.  

If you are following a ketogenic diet you could say that this recipe serves two - for everyone else - you may want to split it up into a few more portions - I split mine into 6, I am low carb but not quite Keto on most days.
February 01, 2017

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Keto O/S Conference Recap and Super Bowl Sunday Recipes.

Happy February to all!  Have you noticed that the days are already getting noticeably longer?  I was driving home last night at 5:30 and suddenly realized that it was still light out!  How awesome is that??  Granted it’s been more dreary than not for the past 10 days but not being plunged into darkness at 4:30 in the afternoon is nevertheless something to celebrate. 

I was fortunate this past weekend to attend the Pruvit Conference in Dallas Texas where I got to meet some of the leading doctors and researchers working on therapeutic ketone formulations and applications, we were gifted with several personal development sessions led by leaders in the field and had the privilege to hear some of the most unbelievable stories from people who have experienced life changing results using Keto//OS.  Many of these stories cannot be shared as they are so incredible that until they have been clinically studied and assessed in a formal environment it would be irresponsible to do so.  But universally, the themes included improved energy, better mental clarity and in many (jaw dropping) instances incredible fat loss stories.  If you’ve never visited the Pruvit Facebook page take a minute to do so now (faceboook.com/JustPruvit) - there are videos and photos of some of the highlights including Bonnie’s story who lost over 100 lbs since last May - she shared her experience in such a poignant way there was not a dry eye in the house - and this from a product that is not actually a “weight loss” product.

Here are a few of the learning points from the conference - it will be repetition for some but news to others - we can never really repeat this enough:

  1. Keto//OS contains therapeutic ketone salts - this is an all natural  Nutritional Supplement that supplies your body with an alternative source of energy to glucose in the form of ketones.
  2. Ketone bodies are also signalling molecules in the body. That means they communicate with other cells and systems so their effects, many of which are still active areas of study, range widely but some of the best understood ones are managing inflammation, improving antioxidant production, blood sugar regulation, appetite control and fat burning which ultimately leads to improved body composition.
  3. Keto//OS is NOT a weight loss supplement and yet, it will help your body build and keep lean muscle more efficiently while burning fat at the same time - to anyone in the sustainable weight loss field this is central to success.
  4. Keto//OS does not give you a free pass to eat an unhealthy diet or to sit on the couch eating snacks all day long - this is especially true if your goal is weight loss. What Keto OS can do is help to curb your cravings and give you better control over what you do eat while improving your energy so that you can get moving.  If you have a lot of weight to lose “exercise” for you could simply be a few 10 minute walks a day - anything to get moving.  Walking too painful?  Try finding a community pool, walking in the shallow end will take the pressure off your joints but the resistance of the water will help to give you a workout to fire up your fat burning, muscle building engine..
  5. Ketones are great for your brain - researchers have known for decades that ketones are the perfect fuel for your brain - watch Dr Dominic d’Agostino’s TedTalk (http://bit.ly/2aYoute) which is actually about starving cancer but also touches on how ketones help the brain.
  6. Better Sleep - Dr D’Agostino believes and has studies that show that ketones affect brain neurotransmitters supporting GABA, a brain chemical that supports relaxation and sleep. This would explain the many reports of “better sleep” we receive from regular users of Keto//OS.

So there you have it, a bit of a more technical look at some of the benefits you can expect from introducing ketones into your body.  As many of you know, you can do this through diet alone or by using one of the Ketone products on the market like Keto//OS or a combination of the two.  A final word about those other products, one new study that was shared at the conference was a clinical study conducted by a third party independent lab comparing KetoMax to some of those other products on the market.  The results showed that KetoMax hands down beat the competition - people experienced improved energy and focus and their blood ketones were in most cases double that of the other products.  These results will be published soon, once again follow the Pruvit Facebook page (or me) for regular updates.

Okay back to real life…it is Super Bowl Sunday this weekend and whether you watch football or not there is a reasonable chance you will end up at (or hosting) some type of Super Bowl Party.  To help you stick to your goals while enjoying the party I have included some ideas and links to recipes that you can use to entertain your guests.  If you are invited to a party, offer to bring something that you know you will enjoy that still fits the bill - my favourites in this category include Tapas Style Baked Chicken Wings or Guacamole with marinated Jicama sticks.

Super Bowl Menu

  1. Tapas Style Chicken Wings - here’s a link to a recipe on my blog http://bit.ly/2jSC00B

  2. Guacamole - make your own (http://bit.ly/2kW4TsD) or buy pre made just watch that the ingredients do not include sugar
  3. No Bean Chili - just meat no beans to get in the way and make you all gassy. Plus this recipe from one of my favourite Paleo food bloggers includes…wait for it - chocolate - how can you possibly go wrong???  http://bit.ly/1mtpLsy
  4. Shiratake Noodles - want to blow your guests’ minds? Serve the chili over your choice of Zeroodles Shiratake Noodles…..
  5. Jicama Sticks - instead of the usual raw veggie platter if you can find jicama at the grocery store just peel, slice into french fry shape, and toss with lots of fresh lime juice, sea salt and a bit of cayenne. Refrigerate covered mixing occasionally to make sure all get a good soaking in the juice and spices. Use to dip in the guacamole or have on the side with your chili - they are crunchy and fresh and great for your belly.
  6. Green Plantain Chips: Another option to replace chips is to buy Green Plantains and slice them super thin using a mandolin or food processor - toss them with melted coconut oil, lots and lots of fresh lime juice and generously sprinkle with sea salt.  Place them in a thin layer on a cookie sheet (if they overlap a bit it’s ok but they will take a bit longer and will stick together) and bake at 300 till they are crispy and just starting to turn golden.  Let them cool and BAM!  Delicious chips, great for your gut as they provide resistant starch an important nutrient for your beneficial guy bugs.

If you want to try Keto O/S for yourself you can order it online at: canfuel.pruvitnow.com/caand, if you want a bit more insight into how it works in your body, watch the video at canfuel.experienceketo.com/ca

As always, thank you for reading and thank you so much for your comments and emails!

 

Follow me on social media for recipes, meal ideas and more - see links below.

Instagram: @nathalieniddam

Facebook:  KetoNat

Website:NathalieNiddam.com

 

January 25, 2017

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Keeping Keto in Restaurants & Keto O/S Sale!

As I look out my window the snow is just beginning to fall again - it seems that our brief respite from winter is about to end, I’m both a bit sad and relieved given how it is winter after all and it’s supposed to be cold and snowy this IS Canada!  That being said, it is the end of January, and in my town (Toronto) this means that it is Winterlicious - an attempt by local restaurants to lure people out into the cold when they’d really rather be hibernating to try out a new place or go to a restaurant they might not otherwise be able to afford.  This program seems to exist in most major Canadian cities - in Vancouver it’s called Dine Out, in Montreal Le Happening Gourmand - most of not all major Canadian cities have some strategy to get us out dining and indulging…to those of us working on our goals this can present a real challenge.  This post is about strategies we can use to “manage the damage” and not get thrown off track.

Nat’s Top 5 Strategies For Eating Out

  1. Choose your meal before you even walk in the door. The good news is that at this stage of the game you’d be hard pressed to find a restaurant that does not have its menu posted online.  Taking a moment to look the menu over and decide in the calm and quiet of your home without the peer pressure of friends urging you to “just have the gnocchi - you deserve it”…really?  Define deserve - I deserve to feel bloated and comatose after my meal?  Or do I deserve to be able to enjoy a night out with my friends while mutually respecting each other’s choices whatever they may be?
  2. Do not show up feeling like you haven’t eaten in days. There is no better recipe (other than number 3) for eating the first thing you can get your hands on (usually the bread basket) than walking into a restaurant hungry.  If you use Keto O/S have 1/2 a shake (decaf if it’s dinnertime and ideally the orange 2.1 as it is a bit more satiating than the other fat free formulas) about half an hour before you leave the house.  This should help you to feel better (hello stable blood sugar) and more in control of your choices - especially if you forgot about point 1 as outlined above.
  3. No bread on the table. As long as it’s ok with your dining mates asking the waiter not to bring bread to the table is the best way not to eat it.  If the decision is made to have bread at the table, take a deep breath, think of how much better you will feel without the bread and do your best to not indulge. 
  4. Do not discuss your food choices and philosophies with your dining mates unless they are genuinely interested and supportive. Dinner should be fun and relaxing - hosting a debate on the finer points of how deprived you are by following your plan is not fun or relaxing…nor is it good for your digestion.  If necessary smile sweetly and change the subject - firmly - if necessary launch a discussion on US politics, if that doesn’t distract them, nothing will.
  5. Avoid overindulging in alcohol. On occasion you can certainly enjoy a glass of wine but once you have had a second and a third you will notice your inhibitions and resolve floating out the door as the pasta appears on your placemat.  Fast forward a couple of hours and there you are bloated and uncomfortable wondering what the heck happened.
  6. What to choose - for appetizers enjoy a charcuterie platter, a salad or a soup, mussels, oysters…so many options! - for mains, stick to protein preferably grilled, roasted or braised (although the latter often involves a step where the meat is dredged in flour), ask for extra vegetables…indulge in the richness of sauces ideally without flour (ask or email ahead to check - chefs won’t make you your own but at least you’ll know)…and as for dessert - skipping it is ideal but if it’s a treat night then Flans, Creme Brule and Creme Caramel are generally pretty good choices.

So there you have it, a few strategies to help you along.  There is no doubt that every once in a while we will choose to indulge and fall off the wagon - on occasion, it is appropriate and a normal part of life but these guidelines may come in handy for those of you who dine out more often than you eat in - you should not have to sacrifice your health to do so - life, as a good friend of mine used to say, is not a dress rehearsal.

Now - about that sale - until midnight this Thursday (January 26th) every product in the Pruvit store is 15% off.  You won’t see the discount till you check out but it’s a great chance to stock up, try a new formula or get your first order and find out what the fuss is all about for yourself.  If it’s your first time ordering please go to canfuel.pruvitnow.com/ca and, as you are waiting for your first order make sure you watch the video at canfuel.experienceketo.com/ca

Thank you so much for reading!  For video’s, recipes and health tips please follow me on social media at the links below.

Until next week - keep warm and be nourished!!

 

Instagram: @nathalieniddam

Facebook:  KetoNat

Website:NathalieNiddam.com

January 18, 2017

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My passions for Ketones explained - Intermediate fasting

Welcome back!  How have you done with your breakfasts since our last post?  Have you changed anything after reading last week’s instalment?  Do you feel any difference?  Send me an email, message me on Facebook via KetoNat - I’d love to hear from you!

A big part of the world of Nutrition Science these days centres around the idea of Personalization - the idea that there is no one way or method that will work for everyone.  This leads us to the idea of “self quantification” which is a big word describing a method of tracking what you do and how it affects you - your energy, your sleep, your performance, your body composition etc….  We will explore this in detail in a later post but for now, even note taking counts.  Overall, my goal is to introduce you to different concepts so that you can, if you choose, try them on for size and see how they work for you, if they suit your lifestyle and your personal situation and ultimately, if they help you to hit your goals whatever they may be - the best way to do that is to try something new, stick to it for ideally a month all the while keeping notes on how you are feeling, sleeping etc.  At the end of the month, look back at your notes and assess if this was an improvement or not and decide how to proceed accordingly. 

Some of you may be muttering to yourself right now: “yeah sure and those ketones, she just keeps going on and on about those ketones” am I right?  Let me explain.  It took a while for me to jump on this particular train - I tried Keto O/S first based on the time I spent studying Ketogenic & Low Carb High Fat lifestyles - at first blush it seemed too good to be true and yet, the idea that one could get the benefits of ketones without actually having to be on a fully ketogenic diet was very intriguing.  Because you see - as much as Keto and LCHF lifestyles can be transformational for some people they don’t always work.  You may not tolerate high fat, you may be suffering from chronic stress, your genetics may have you set up for a different plan - whatever the reason, being Ketogenic may just not be available to you.  Enter Keto O/S - combined with a clean diet (I am not suggesting that a steady diet of croissants and packaged foods can be offset by drinking a shake, far from it), use the shake to increase your energy, decrease your cravings and reintroduce your body to the magic of ketones, work on your sleep, start exercising (even if for you that means walking 20 minutes a day), hydrate and repeat.  Day after day….be consistent, notice the changes in how you feel and allow those to drive your actions: make better food choices, take the stairs instead of the elevator because you can not because you have to  - continue to do this day after day and over time you will see the results.  The beauty of this product is that it seems to level the playing field for so many people and it is for this reason that I recommend people try it.  Ok.  On to Intermittent Fasting.

What is it?  Intermittent fasting is simply the practice of deliberately refraining from eating food for a 16-18 hour window on designated days.  It’s really not as bad as it sounds - think of it this way - you finish dinner around 7:30 pm and then don’t eat again till lunch time the next day.  You can drink water, herbal teas and even a bit of coffee or, you can do a modified IF (see below).  This way of eating comes naturally to some (those people who hate breakfast for example) and sounds completely insane to others (people who are on the edge of famine upon opening their eyes every morning).  But the benefits, which are still an active area of study, can be amazing for many people.  Consider some of the benefits attributed to Intermittent Fasting (IF):

  1. Fat Loss.  It appears that even 16 hours without food helps your body to increase your metabolic rate slightly.  In addition, assuming that you don’t then go on to overeat at your next two meals you will effortlessly reduce your total calories for the day.  Net net, you burn more and consume less - win win.
  2. IF seems to target belly fat and promote lean muscle preservation - sound familiar? Indeed, this is a much touted effect of having ketones on board or being in a ketogenic state.
  3. IF seems to reduce insulin resistance and hence may decrease the risk of Type 2 Diabetes. The caveat here is that this effect seems to be more true for men than women - read on for a hack that may help women access the benefits.
  4. IF is good for your brain - this is an active area of research from traumatic brain injury recovery to Alzheimers and Parkinsons there is a growing body of evidence that the presence of ketones are beneficial so anything you can do to increase your exposure to ketones be it through diet alone or taking Keto O/S may be helpful in this area.

Now - let’s talk about how to go about trying out this Intermittent fasting business for yourself.  Those of you who will have the easiest time:

  • You are following a high fat low carb diet (with or without Keto O/S)
  • You are following a Ketogenic Diet (with or without Keto O/S)
  • You use Keto O/S - in this case, just start your day with a glass of water and a tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar (I love this for Blood Sugar stabilizing effects) and then have a Keto O/S shake. Drink lots of water…eat when you are hungry - typically should happen around lunch.

If you are on a high carbohydrate standard diet I do not recommend that you try this strategy cold turkey, the odds are that you will feel quite awful.  Instead try this modified strategy first:

  • Upon waking - a glass of water with a tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar (Bragg’s is a great brand) - notice that you feel less hungry after a few minutes - one of the many benefits of apple cider vinegar.
  • If you need coffee or tea to start your day - add either 1/2 a pouch of KetoKreme or some coconut milk and 1 Tbsp Bulletproof Brain Octane MCT oil and some cinnamon to your coffee.
  • When you feel hungry again, have a Keto O/S shake.
  • Next time you get hungry….have your healthy lunch.
  • Try to gradually ease yourself into a lower carbohydrate diet and gradually increase your healthy fat intake to fill the gap.

Notes

  • There is some evidence that women over 40 do better with a bit of protein in the morning so either have an egg with your coffee or, what I like to do is to add some Collagen Protein (Bulletproof Upgraded Collagen is my go to) powder to my coffee.
  • After a couple of weeks you may find that you can skip the coffee altogether and just have the shake - see how you feel.
  • Do NOT do this everyday - at least not to start - start with two days a week, eventually you may make this your workday routine just because it is easier and you feel so good but have a healthy breakfast at least two days a week.
  • Keep notes and listen to your body. If you are feeling lightheaded or weak with hunger….do not get stubborn…you may not be ready for this.  That’s ok.  Have a healthy snack on hand - have you tried the Bulletproof Bars or Collagen Shortbread Bites yet?  They are delicious and good for you!  Low Carb Canada carries the bars and the Protein Bites should be available soon.

So there you have it, a quick overview of Intermittent Fasting and some of the benefits you can experience.  If you are interested in learning more on this topic there is a great book by Dr Jason Fung - The Obesity Code.  It goes into a lot more detail around how fasting (intermittent or otherwise) can be incredibly helpful in managing weight and a number of health conditions.

If you want to try Keto O/S for yourself you can order it online at: canfuel.pruvitnow.com/ca

and, if you want a bit more insight into how it works in your body, watch the video at canfuel.experienceketo.com/ca

As always, thank you for reading and than you for your comments and emails! 

Follow me on social media for recipes, meal ideas and more - see links below.

Instagram: @nathalieniddam

Facebook:  KetoNat

Website:NathalieNiddam.com

January 11, 2017

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Breakfast Three Ways (#3 May Shock You!) Supercharged Nut Butters

Good Day Keto Friends!  How is your journey going?  As we move through the second week of January most of you are hopefully back into your routines and are steadily moving towards your goal of a healthy and successful 2017.  Today I thought we would discuss what has been a fairly controversial and at times confusing issue in the world of nutrition - Breakfast.

Many people wake up in the morning and cannot wait to get downstairs to eat, they are just famished from their overnight “fast”.  For others, breakfast is a huge hassle, the most rushed meal of the day with all this pressure around it - you are told that if you get it right, there’s nothing you cannot accomplish, get it wrong you may as well just go back to bed.  As a Holistic Nutritionist I have come to understand that breakfast done right can indeed set you up for success - but it’s the done right part that is up for interpretation.  The reality?  Just like everything else there is no one answer…it’s about you, your circumstances and what works for you.  There’s not enough room in this blog to go through all of the intricacies in this topic but here are a few options available to you depending on which of three groups you land in - the fundamental principle for everyone of these however is to aim for stable blood sugar - always.  One more caveat - for children going to school the answer is always to start their day with a decent breakfast that includes some healthy protein and good fat.  Please please avoid the sending them off with nothing but carbs in their tummies it’s just not enough.  See my hack below for turning regular almond butter into a powerful source of healthy fat and protein

For adults we have a bit more flexibility:

Situation 1- FEED Me!

You must eat breakfast or you just won’t make it to 10 am never mind lunch.  In this case you must make your breakfast count.  The most important advice I give clients on breakfast is that unless they are making a breakfast shake it should not be all that different than any other meal of the day….in other words, buck convention and avoid having dessert for breakfast.  Have protein, healthy fat and low GI carbs…in English?  Eggs with a side of fish or meat and some wilted spinach, or leftovers from last night’s dinner, a slice of frittata topped with guacamole and salsa…even, taking a page from other cultures - a bowl of soup.  All of these are nutritious and sustaining - it takes a bit of planning but it is worth it.  Feeling peckish mid morning?  You may need to add a bit more protein or fat to your breakfast or perhaps consider having a Keto O/S shake to get you through to lunch.

Situation 2 - No Time but Hungry

I will spare you the lecture on the importance of taking time to sit and nourish your body - life just doesn't always work out that way.  That said the principles of protein, healthy fat and healthy carb holds here too.  A giant shaker bottle of fruit with or without protein is not going to serve you well.  Here’s a better formula that tastes great and will keep you going all morning:

  • 1-2 scoops protein powder (I love Bulletproof Upgraded Collagen - no taste, top notch quality. You an also use Whey protein instead if you know that you tolerate dairy)
  • Unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk (use canned coconut milk - full fat, dilute with water for volume especially if adding Keto O/S - you want a good 12- 16 oz)
  • 1/2 cup raspberries OR 1 TBSP unsweetened cacao Powder (Bulletproof or Giddy Yoyo are great brands)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 avocado for creaminess and some extra fat and fibre
  • 1 cup packed baby spinach leaves OR a good quality greens powder
  • If you are using Keto O/S add a pouch of the Orange Dream to the Raspberry version or the Chocolate Swirl to the Chocolate Version
  • A tablespoon of Almond Butter
  • If not using Keto O/S you can sweeten with a bit of Stevia or Erythritol

Blend till smooth with or without ice and enjoy!  The chocolate version in particular can also be enjoyed warm on a cold day when a cold shake just doesn’t seem right.

Situation 3 - Not Hungry

You wake up and you are just not hungry.  Gone are the days where you have to force yourself to choke down breakfast - you may simply not need food right now and that’s ok!.  Enjoy the fact that unlike so many other people your blood sugar is stable enough to carry you through the night and into the morning.  You are a perfect candidate for Intermittent Fasting (next week’s post).  In your case, just make sure you hydrate and.… 

  • You can also choose to have some healthy fat with your coffee or tea to keep your brain happy through the morning and keep you focused - either by adding a full to half pouch of KetoKreme (easiest) or by making a Bulletproof Coffee (blend 1-2 TBSP Brain Octane Oil and 1-2 TBSP of either Butter, Ghee or Coconut Butter with coffee and cinnamon).
  • For women over the age of 40 there is an argument that says that we do better with some protein first thing in the morning so you can either have an egg on the side or, easiest solution, add a couple of tablespoons of Upgraded Collagen to your coffee or tea.
  • If you get hungry or find yourself losing focus mid morning - having a Keto O/S shake should do the trick to get you back into balance and keep you chugging easily till lunchtime.

So there you have it - three different breakfast scenarios, all designed to cater to you and to keep your energy and focus high through the morning and help your blood sugar stay stable - in itself is a critical piece to burning fat instead of storing it. 

I have included the use of Keto O/S in all three scenarios as it introduces ketones to your body which themselves deliver a host of health benefits including helping your body access fat stores for fuel while improving mental focus, managing inflammation and stabilizing blood sugar.  But a quick note to those of you who are using Keto O/S for fat burning - know that this product while effective (just check out the stories on the Pruvit Corporate Facebook Page) takes time to work its magic and cannot do it alone - for optimal results you must do your part.  Hone in on your healthy diet, eliminate excess and processed carbs, get moving, hydrate and get good quality sleep.  Do this consistently and you should see results as so many of my clients and so many others have since it hit the scene.  Those who take Keto O/S and carry on with their unhealthy lifestyles will still see and experience benefits but it will take more time and they may be less visible and more experiential (ie more energy, better blood sugar, less inflammation but the bikini bod may take a bit longer to achieve).  In other words, you will still get health benefits but it may take longer to see the results in your body composition.

Check out my recipe below for amping up the nutritional value of nut butters and, as always, if you’d like to introduce Keto O/S into your lifestyle just go to: canfuel.pruvitnow.com/ca to place your order.  You can reach out to me at canfuel@lowcarbcanada.com with any questions or for support.  To see how ketones work in your body watch the video at: canfuel.experienceketo.com/ca

For more recipes and tips on following a Low Carb or Ketogenic Lifestyle you can follow me on social media links below.

As always, thank you so much for reading and for all your questions!

Warmest regards,

Facebook: KetoNat

Instagram: @nathalieniddam

Website:  NathalieNiddam.com

Looking for Help Paying Holiday Bills?

If you are using and loving Keto O/S, did you know that you could get your product for free, and earn some money all while helping your loved ones experience better energy and health?  If you are interested in learning more about this opportunity please send me an email: canfuel@lowcarbcanada.com and I can fill you in on the details.

SuperCharged Keto Sesame Butter Balls

We think of nut butters as high protein foods but unfortunately they are not quite as protein rich as we think.  This easy to execute strategy delivers more healthy fats, and a bit more protein without anyone being the wiser.  Use these as fat bombs, throw them into your smoothies or spread on Keto Bread for a delicious snack.

Ingredients

  • 4 Tablespoons Sesame Butter (also called Tahini I used it to deliver calcium but you can substitute any nut butter you enjoy)
  • 2 Tablespoons KetoKreme (for sweetness and healthy fats)
  • 1 Tablespoon Bulletproof Brain Octane Oil (more Keto producing Fats)
  • 2 Tablespoons Bulletproof Upgraded Collagen Powder (or other high quality protein powder just make sure carbs are low!)
  • 2 Tablespoons Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (to stabilize blood sugar)
  • Stevia or Erythritol if you need more sweetness (optional)

Directions

  • Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix until well blended and smooth
  • Using a melon ball scoop or round spoon scoop into 7 balls
  • refrigerate and enjoy
  • Each ball delivers: 9g Fat, 2g net carbs, 3g protein

Notes:  The shredded coconut adds body to these balls - if you are going to use this is a spread you can omit the coconut if you wish.  I like it for the added fibre, natural sweetness and texture - your choice!

January 04, 2017

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Happy New Year! Routines & Consistency, and Keto O/S Hot Chocolate!

Happy New Year friends!  Are you ready to take on 2017?  I love January for the new energy and renewed focus it brings - there’s nothing like a fresh start!  No matter what happened over the holidays you have exactly that before you: a fresh start. 

If you are one of the lucky people who were able to stick to your guns in the face of the cookie platters, figgy puddings, boxed chocolates and gargantuan meals you can pat yourself on the back, take a moment to celebrate your success and build on it.   If, on the other hand, you fell prey in spite of your best efforts to the endless barrage of temptations that paraded before you then this fresh start is just what you need - let’s begin with 4 things you can do today to kick off your best year ever:

  1. Look back and think about what you might have done better.  Make a note about how you think you could learn from this holiday season (do this for no more than 10 minutes) and then….
  2. Let it go.  No matter what happened and why, own it and put it behind you.  Know that you are in good company and time to move forward.
  3. Purge everything out of your house that you know you don’t want to eat and that you cannot resist. Trust me, if those delicious Lindt chocolates or shortbread cookies are not there calling your name at 10:00 at night, the next time you’re feeling a bit peckish or bored, you will not eat them.  For most of us, our bodies can handle a week or so of derailment but it’s when a week turns into two, we slide back into our old habits - almost without realizing it the wheels really come off the bus.
  4. Go back to your old routines, you most likely were in a reasonably good groove before the sugar hit the fan, let’s just get you back there. Need a daily routine? Try this:
    • First thing - start with a glass of room temp water and 2-3 tsp of raw apple cider vinegar.
    • If you eat breakfast - make sure you have protein and healthy fat - for example eggs over steamed spinach with avocado and salsa on the side or a good protein shake mixed with berries and some full fat coconut milk. If you skip breakfast (we will discuss in greater detail next week) you can simply have a Keto O/S shake to power you through till lunch.
    • This should carry you to lunch - if not, try a Keto O/S shake when you get hungry mid morning. Drink water or herbal tea.  Have a hard boiled egg or a few nuts and 1/2 an apple.
    • Lunch: a portion of protein, a heap of vegetables and 1-2 thumb size portions of healthy fat. Plus…water or herbal tea.
    • If you tend to crash in the afternoon or seem to need a “snack” every day at 3 or 4pm you can move your Keto O/S shake to post lunch instead of mid morning or, have 1/2 in the morning and half after lunch. Plus water or herbal tea.
    • Try to eat dinner by 7 pm at the latest - portion of protein, a mountain of vegetables and 1-2 thumb size portions of healthy fat.
    • After dinner hydrate and get to bed at a reasonable hour - for many people this alone will cut down on late night snacking.
    • If you tend to need something sweet, try 1/4 cup of berries with 3 -4 tablespoons of full fat coconut milk, some ground flax and cinnamon as a snack OR, some KetoKreme in a cup of herbal tea to relax before bed.

Details:

  • Keep your food simple. Unless you love cooking, just roast, bake and steam…easy.
  • Hydrate - so many people are dehydrated - this makes you tired, think that you’re hungry and it makes it hard for your body to do what it needs to do. Set reminders in your phone if you have to - just do it.
  • Portions - again, keep it simple to start: protein, the size of the palm of your hand and the thickness of a deck of cards to start. If you are a big person or an athlete you may need two of these but for most of us, one is enough. Fat - 1 -2 thumb size portions, this can be 1/4 of an avocado, a couple of tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil drizzled over vegetables - every meal needs some fat.
  • Carbohydrates - Non Starchy like leafy greens and cruciferous vegetables - fill up on these, 3-4 cups per meal is great - cooked or raw, whatever works for you. Starchy vegetables grains - Moderate depending on your goals - limit to a cupped palm (at most), try to have these on more active days and with your evening meal to help with sleep. Keto O/S shows up anywhere you need it - I like it because it can fill gaps without overcomplicating your routines while bringing so many benefits that can help you to stay on track: better energy, mental clarity, focus, blood sugar stability, fat burning, manage appetite and curb cravings
  • Most importantly - be consistent and be patient with yourself.  We live in a crazy fast paced world expecting instant results - remember that it took you years to get to where you are today - it will likely take some time to get the results you are after.  And - it takes time for the body to adapt and react to new routines.  Sometimes we see results in a week, sometimes it takes a month.  You will know you are on the right track by how you feel - and you will know this by tracking how you feel every day.  

I invite you to buy a notebook (or use the notes in your phone) and check in with yourself two to three times a day - note energy, hunger levels, any digestive symptoms - see how they change over time, how different meals work for you etc.  Unless you are getting clear signs that what you are doing is not working for you, stick to the program for at least 30 days…if you make a change, change only one thing at a time so that you can gauge it’s effect. 

If you are using Keto O/S and losing fat is your goal - do not rely on your scale, Ketones are muscle sparing and fat burning  - this can show up as looser clothes without much movement on the scale…this is a GOOD thing!  More muscle means more energy for you and a higher metabolic rate at rest!

Until next week when we will talk about breakfast and intermittent fasting - be well, be patient and be consistent!  Thank you so much for all your questions - please keep them coming so that I can be of assistance to you.

For recipes and meal ideas please follow me social media (links below) and to order Keto O/S please go to canfuel.pruvitnow.com/ca .  After you have placed your order watch the video at: canfuel.drinkyoursample.com/ca for great tips on how to get started. 

Until next week!!!

 

Follow me
Instagram:  @nathalieniddam
Facebook:   KetoNat
Website: NathalieNiddam.com

Are you loving your Keto O/S? If you are and would like to share your success with others you could earn extra income just by sharing the gift of ketones with your friends and family!  Send me an email at canfuel@lowcarbcanada.com and I’ll help you to get started.

Keto O/S Hot Chocolate Breakfast Protein Shake

It’s getting a bit cold out to have a cold drink every morning - so on extra chilly days try this instead of your usual cold shake:

1 Sachet Keto O/S 3.0 Chocolate Swirl

2 teaspoons unsweetened cacao powder

1 tsp Maca Powder (optional but great adaptogen - helps body deal with stress)

1- 2 tablespoons Bulletproof Upgraded Collagen Powder (optional)

2 Tbsp Full fat unsweetened Coconut Milk  (My faves: Cha’s Organics or Native Forest)

    1. Dissolve Cacao powder and Maca in 1/4 cup warm water in your shaker bottle.
    2. Add coconut milk and shake well to dissolve.
    3. Top with another 10 oz or so of warm/hot water
    4. Add Keto O/S and Collagen Protein Powder (if using)
    5. Shake well until blended
    6. Enjoy!!
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