I have a new husband since we started the Keto diet a little over three months ago. I know, this sounds like a big exaggeration, and maybe I am exaggerating, but I do seriously have the best version of my husband that I have ever had.
Today, while scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed, I saw that a lifelong friend posted a silly meme poking fun of Keto. It said, “When everyone won’t shut up about the Keto diet, and I’m like...Yo Keto Taco Bell?” Funny, right?
Except, to me, it’s not. Her son is in the hospital again with another auto-immune flare up. She’s put on a lot of weight and looks heavier than I’ve seen her since high school. She’s moving into the obese range, and so is her husband.
These things aren’t funny to me. I guess that’s why, when I see her so dismissive and antagonistic toward new health information, I get a little irritated. Maybe I’m being too emotional. But I want her to do well, feel well. I want her son to have the best chance of stopping his autoimmune responses. I want her family to be the best versions of themselves possible.
I want them to see results like my husband and I have seen.
But apparently these results don’t look that impressive to people. But to me, they are almost in the range of the fantastical and what I had once thought impossible.
About a year before my husband started the Keto diet, I made him go to our doctor and get referred for a sleep study. Instead of waiting until his follow-up appointment, the specialist immediately called him. He was having so many sleep apneas that he was in the danger-zone. He immediately got set up with a CPAP machine. That machine made him feel so much better since he was finally able to get restful sleep. We were so happy with this discovery and the technology to help. Since we had been married, we had not been able to sleep in the same room. His snoring was just not conducive to co-sleeping.
Then, and I don’t remember how long this took, it really couldn’t have been longer than a couple of weeks, his snoring went away while eating Keto. He was for the first time able to get a restful night’s sleep without the CPAP machine.
However, if he cheats, it he gets more carbs than usual, his snoring will return. Though, it has never gotten to his pre-Keto snoring level. For me, this was definitely not something I expected to be either caused or helped by diet. But what a convenient benefit of Keto. He can go to sleep without a bulky machine attached to him, and he doesn’t have to lug it around when he travels for work!
Also quite notably, my husband was discharged from the military due to a shoulder injury. (This happened years before I met him). Throughout our courtship and marriage, this shoulder would often give him trouble, causing him to wince and stiffen up more times than I’d like to remember. His hip would do the same, only to a much greater degree. If he were to sit for any extended amount of time, he would have such a hard time getting up, often having his hip completely freeze on him. He would stand there silently and visibly in pain, willing his hip to finally move and stop hurting. Being younger than 40, these inflammatory issues just seemed like something he would have to deal with for all his life.
Now, after Keto, they don’t bother him. Within the past month he even purchased a pull-up bar for the house. He routinely will do around 20 pull-ups a day, without having any shoulder issue at all. He never would have been able to do this before! And his hip pain, I have not once, since Keto, seen him freeze and wince like he used to. There have only been a couple times he’s had some slight stiffness in his hip after prolonged periods in the car, but these moments are incredibly brief in comparison to what they were.
His body is like a new body, limber and rejuvenated, without all that inflammation that had stemmed from his previous consumption of sugar and carbohydrates.
Yet, his body is not the only thing that seems new to me. His mind seems to be finally free from all the carb/sugar clutter. That ADHD that plagued him since childhood, that made our marriage almost insufferable for me at times, pretty much disappeared immediately on a Ketogenic diet. He was finally able to focus. Before, he’d become almost obsessive with things, buying this and that, starting this and that, all to let it falter. He’d binge on a task, never seeming to make much progress. He’d never feel like he had time to spend with the family because of these other things he should be doing. This all changed with Keto.
Because his mother, and to a degree his father, have the same symptoms, we had thought that the ADHD was just a genetic curse. (I know many will get mad that I use that term “curse”, but it was causing more harm than good for him and our family). When he and I started the Keto diet to help prevent disease in the future (like Alzheimer's, diabetes, and cancer), we never expected it to clear up his ADHD. We had thought he would probably have to be on ADHD medication for life. Luckily, we were wrong. So wrong!
Now, of course, like the snoring, if he cheats and eats more carbs, he will get that scatter-brained ADHD brain back temporarily. But at least now he can see it and understand it, and then go quickly back to his Keto diet.
And the ADHD fix is not the only way it’s brought out the best version of my husband. He now has been able to experience life without depression, anxiety, and easily-triggered irritability. Imagine how much happier he is!
Back in those days where I almost despised my husband (in that year after our daughter was born), I remember talking to his mom about how he was acting. Her only reply was that he was depressed. As a wife, this didn’t exactly give me hope. It was a diagnosis from his mother that simply said, it’s been something he’s dealt with in the past, and it will be something he will continue to deal with in the future. I was really at a loss for what to do. Like the ADHD, it just seemed to be something that ran in his family, a genetic trait he had no control over.
Then, like the other Keto benefits we saw, the disappearance of his depression and irritability surprised us. He doesn’t disconnect from me or the family like he used to. He doesn’t snap at me or deride and condescend to me at all like did before. He is able to see things in a new light and experience true joy, and he’s a lot better to be around.
With his body feeling better, his brain feeling clearer, and his mood much improved, he seems happier than I’ve ever seen him. We have fun together. We laugh together. He’s now the best husband and father I could ask for.
He has this newfound energy he never had prior to Keto, not even when he was young Marine. For example, he went from not running at all during our five years together, to all of a sudden running three miles at a time right after starting a Keto diet. Then, after only running a week or two, he did his first 5K, then his second. Now, he plans on running a half marathon in a couple weeks. Shockingly to me, he ran over 11 miles four days ago. Eleven miles!
Not only is he working his full-time job and spending quality time with us, he’s working on learning computer programming skills and working out.
I’m really not joking when I say he could be in a fitness magazine after only a few months eating Keto and intermittent fasting.
Last weekend, he ran from our house to meet us five miles up at a park. When I saw him running by, I was stunned! How was that my husband?! How did I get so lucky?!
Never did I expect any kind of diet to affect my family like Keto has done. Four months ago, I was completely ignorant when it came to the importance of what we eat. I had no idea how much carbohydrates affected some of us.
But now I know, and I’m so grateful that we found a way to improve ourselves as individuals and as a family unit.
At the time, I didn’t realize how much weight we needed to lose or how much better we would feel with better fuel for our body. For those people poking fun of Keto, they are in the same boat, not realizing how much they could benefit from some dietary changes.