The “keto” (short for ketogenic) diet has been gaining popularity over the past few years. I first learned about keto when my hubby, “Meat”, decided to focus on losing weight about a year ago. He’d first tinkered with the paleo diet which encourages eating only what our paleolithic hunter ancestors would have had access to, such as meat and certain vegetables. And now, he’s been on the keto diet for the past few months. So what’s the difference between paleo and keto?
What is paleo?
Paleolithic humans’ diets varied depending on availability and location. The basic concept of the paleo diet is to eat whole foods and avoid processed foods.– Healthline.com
What is keto?
The keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet. It lowers blood sugar and insulin levels, and shifts the body’s metabolism away from carbs and towards fat and ketones.– Healthline.com
Keto is pretty similar to paleo, in my opinion, except you CAN eat dairy, and you really need to focus less on protein and more on healthy fats and oils. Between paleo and keto, my husband has lost about 35 pounds, and has been keeping it off. He does eat carbs maybe once or twice a week – some would call this “dirty keto”. I think this non-strict approach has been important to maintaining the diet longer-term. I’ve also been eating mainly keto. The amaaaaazing thing about keto (did I say amazing?) is that we eat a lot of the things we LOVE: yogurt, butter, cheese, bacon, pork belly, eggs, avocado, olives, almonds, etc. Yes, even CHEESE, my favourite food!!!
I’ve been thinking a lot about how our kids should be eating. The updated Canada Food Guide advises that a meal should include lots of vegetables and fruits along with some protein and whole grains. This seems pretty aligned to keto, with the exception of the grains part. In any case, I usually cook a keto meal for myself and my husband, and add a side of whole grains (butter pasta, or baguette, etc.) which the kids can eat should they choose to.
Our Keto Meals
Our go-to keto family meals have been:
- bacon and eggs (breakfast for dinner!)
- spinach salad with avocado, eggs, cheese and almonds (my favourite take-to-work lunch)
- Instant pot beef chili (even the kids love this)
- spaghetti bolognese with zucchini noodles
- Instant pot garlic chicken or wings
- Roasted cauliflower and broccoli
- cheesy bread buns (made with almond flour)
We’ve been getting tired of eating the same things lately though. So it was such a great surprise when my husband picked up two keto cookbooks:
I’m planning to cook a couple of new recipes each week from these books! I’m eying the recipes for meatballs and granola. Stay tuned!
Here are a couple of great resources if you’re interested in learning more about keto:
- The Keto Diet Explained by a Doctor and a Dietitian
- The Ketogenic Diet: A Detailed Beginner’s Guide to Keto
- Vegan Keto Diet Guide: Benefits, Foods and Sample Menu