People hate the idea of deprivation. I hate it. You hate it. No one wants to feel like they’re missing out on something great.
For this reason, when people ask me how I managed to so quickly lose so much weight, they are astonished by my mention of “no sugar”. They look at me in bewilderment, as if I said I was giving up oxygen or something else just as vital.
But let’s face it. Sugar is not vital, and we all are eating too much of it!
And it will kill many of us. Yet, we still can’t give it up.
I’m not going to go into the dangers of sugar here, but I do want to talk about how easy the Keto dietary changes have been and how I DON’T feel deprived at all. Because I have alternatives, I can easily give it up.
1) The first week is the toughest. I’m not going to lie. However, after that first week, it gets so much easier. I even got accustomed to drinking unsweetened tea and coffee, which I NEVER thought I’d be able to do.
2) There are so many Keto alternatives out there. You will find something for your specific favorites! We found a pancake mix we love; we even add some Keto chocolate chips! We have found that an easy way to order these alternatives is through Thrive Market, an online store that will deliver your goodies straight to your door. (P.S. For the “syrup” on those pancakes, we use a simple recipe from Leanne Vogel. It’s just 2 tablespoons of coconut oil mixed with 2 tablespoons of almond butter. So simple and so delicious!)
3) Now, of course, some of you don’t like the stevia, erythritol, or xylitol sweeteners. But, the longer you go without sugar in your system, the better these taste! I promise. We love Zevia (a stevia sweetened soda) and have these whenever we want a Coke or Dr. Pepper. They have quite a few flavors to choose from, too! And now they taste like the real thing to me. I also on occasion use Splenda Naturals with some heavy whipping cream and cinnamon in my morning coffee so that I still feel like I’m using my old sugary creamer. Ditching that creamer was the hardest thing for me, so I found that having a sweet alternative makes me feel like I’m treating myself! However, make sure you look at the ingredient list. It should only say erythritol and stevia. About a month ago, I bought a large bag of Splenda Naturals at Food Lion, and it was a stevia and SUGAR blend! The packaging looked almost identical to the erythritol and stevia blend, so be more careful than I was and ALWAYS look at the ingredient list. Also, sometimes this sweetener will send me quite quickly to the bathroom, so be aware of how your body responds to it. I also notice, too, that using too much of the sweeteners will affect my mood, making me feel like I used to on the Standard American Diet.
I also can’t forget to mention how much we rely on liquid stevia to sweeten various recipes. I use it in my Keto Lemonade and my Keto Milkshake recipes I got from Leanne Vogel’s Keto book, as well as these strawberry cheesecake fat bombs! The best thing about this liquid stevia is that you only use drops at a time, meaning one little bottle lasts FOREVER!
4) You can bake with Keto! My husband uses unsweetened vanilla almond milk, cocoa powder, peanut butter, and confectioners Swerve to make the best fudge! We love it here at our house! We also made our own low carb bagels the other day following a recipe I saw someone post on Facebook.
As you can see, I have found lots of replacements. However, I do want to add a little caveat that it may be best to use these items as a crutch to transition from your old, standard diet to your new, healthy one. I, myself, need to start relying less on these options, and there are many, many days that I do just that; and, even when not indulging in my alternatives, I still never feel deprived.
Those old carb cravings are gone.
I can go longer between meals.
And when I do crave, I crave my Keto foods of some good fat and protein. I crave those seasoned veggies. I find myself wanting food I used to not particularly want to eat.
For example, I love my tacos on romaine lettuce and my burgers (with a fried egg and cheddar on top) covered in iceberg lettuce. To me, the crunch of the lettuce is far superior to the buns I grew up with. Even better, I never find myself feeling heavy or tired after eating these like I used to when they came on carby breads and tortillas.
You see, we find great recipes and eat delicious meals that make us feel full afterwards. There is no calorie deficit with Keto for us. We do not starve ourselves. We do not deprive ourselves.
Thus, I was a little irritated the other day to see a “low carb, no sugar” meme posted by an extended family member I had spent some time giving Keto info to. This meme had a dog being shamed for “eating the wall” and simply said “what happens when I go on a low carb, no sugar diet”.
This could not be further from the truth. But people have no idea how hungry a high-carb diet makes them. They have no idea how filling those healthy fats are. They don’t realize the effect sugar has on them, or how addicted they are. They also don’t realize how easy it is to go Keto and stay on Keto.
I mean, I, too, was one of them. When I was pregnant, I remember telling someone how much I hoped I didn’t have high blood sugar results because I could not live without my creamer. I realize now just how ignorant I was and just how much I was putting sugar as a higher priority than my health and my future child’s health. The power sugar has over us is, indeed, scary.
But without it, I don’t feel like I’m deprived. I never have an urge to eat the wall. In fact, I no longer feel hangry.
I don’t have to eat every couple of hours, I can resist temptation, and food no longer dominates my thinking.
(Please note, I am not receiving money for endorsing any of the abovementioned products. These are just items and recipes I have personally found helpful.)