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The craze for the keto diet in Pakistan took off about a year ago and since then it's one of the most popular diets here. Over the past five years, I have let myself go and I have been absorbed by the pressure of my bachelor's degree. Burgers and fries and pizzas here and there because I had very little time to eat before classes started.
I also had / had PCOS, polycystic ovary syndrome, which also contributed to weight gain. And since PCOS made me insulin-resistant, I was at a higher risk for diabetes, heart disease, and so on.
Then in January, I discovered the ketogenic diet.
A friend of mine has just added me to a Facebook group called Ketogenic Diet Pakistan. Looking through the articles, I could see that people had transformed and improved their health through their diet in just a few weeks.
My priority was primarily to get rid of PCOS. After consulting many doctors, they all told me to lose weight if I wanted to get better. So I knew I had to push myself very hard.
I was not aware of many diets before, with the exception of the high protein one (Atkins?), Which ended my knowledge. I have told myself over and over that it was not going to be a fast-paced diet – that I had to change my lifestyle and then eat healthily even after reaching my target weight.
What is the ketogenic diet anyway?
The ketogenic diet is very simply a diet high in fat and low in carbohydrates. It is about 70% fat, 25% protein and 5% carbohydrates.
The keto in ketogen comes from ketones. Ketones are small fuel molecules produced in the liver from fat. They are a source of alternative energy when you eat a moderate amount of protein and very, very little carbohydrate.
Therefore, in keto, your body works almost entirely on fat. Your insulin levels drop, after which fat burning accelerates and you lose weight. When your body is in ketosis, the best thing to do is that you feel less hungry but never run out of energy.
I've done research on the Internet, read the message pinned in the Ketogenic Diet Pakistan group, and even reviewed people's meal plans.
I have tried to weigh the goods and the inconvenience. I came to the conclusion that I had to say goodbye to sugar, even good sugars. No matter what type of bread, rotis were a big no-no.
Then I ended up with some essential lists and guides on Pinterest, saved or grabbed with a screenshot. I used YouTube to see how vloggers and influencers were running the scheme so that I knew how convenient it was. The Ketogenic Diet Pakistan group on Facebook has also been of great help and has brought me support and motivation in times of worry, questions, and so on.
This is not the case in my case, but I would definitely recommend consulting a doctor or nutritionist before starting a diet because I would face some problems that could have been avoided if I had seen a doctor . However, this diet is not intended for pregnant women or diabetics on medication. I am not a doctor, which is why I suggest you see one if you have health problems or serious illnesses.
Here is my diet plan for the entire month (later, I'll go into details)
8h – 1 tablespoon of cider vinegar with 2 sips of water
8:15 – 1 liter of water
9:15 – Omelette with 2 eggs, slice of cheese and minced mushrooms
11 am – Green tea (tea bags Tapal – simple)
13h – Salad (mostly green vegetables, feta, sometimes strawberries)
16h – Strawberries or almonds in snack, green tea
19h – Chicken with butter, keema shimla mirch (cottage cheese on the side), Palak Paneersometimes Bhindi and Kerelay
20h – Green tea with squeezed lemon
I did all the cooking using ghei or white butter
Consumes a total of 3 to 5 liters of water a day
Now the details
I did not complicate my diet enough. I only had green leafy vegetables and sometimes tomatoes (although I would not recommend the latter because of the higher carbohydrate content). I had no milk because of lactose, which contains more carbohydrates than fat. I had white butter or white butter, both made at home. You can buy both on the market if they are not home-made. People also have foolproof coffee that contains butter and coconut oil to increase their fat intake, but I prefer to eat a spoonful of ghee than to mix it with my coffee. You can feel different about it, it's cool. I also ate whole cottage cheese /paneer when i felt that my fat intake was low during the day.
You will lose about 3 to 4 kg in the first week – the weight of the water – and it depends on how you manage it. There are several lists available online indicating what is allowed, which is not. Check them and you will get the idea.
Say goodbye to carbs
At first, I cheated, but later you forget about sugar or bread to be happy. Nevertheless, allow yourself one day in the week to cheat after two weeks of dieting. You can use almond flour, but I chose to stay completely out of the way.
Take pink salt, it's better. Increase your intake of water and salt – choosing to ignore them will result in a 5-minute muscle spasm, in my case, my leg. I could not walk properly for a week because my muscle was swollen. This can be life threatening, so please do not start the diet if you can not be responsible for your water and salts.
Take multivitamins with breakfast. During the first week, you may contract the keto flu (but if you need it). You can even try intermittent fasting and you will lose weight, that is guaranteed. Avoid processed and low fat products as much as possible.
Here are some meals I have eaten during my keto diet month
Strawberry salad from Rina's kitchenette
This one was a lifesaver in times of confusion. I usually chose croutons and ate a fork full of the rest. Some people might not like leafy green vegetables with strawberries but that was good enough for me.
Turkish bowl of Eat Smart
Has many healthy options for keto-practitioners. You just have to be wary of some carbohydrates here and there, especially in high-carbohydrate sauces and vegetables like tomatoes and onions. This Turkish bowl is made of Greek yogurt, minced meat, boiled eggs and lots of herbs. Bottom in the mouth and enough for two meals.
GreenHouse Handi Fish
This is ideal when you want to give up chicken, mutton and beef. It's very tasty, with the usual masala desi, and cooked to perfection. The service was adequate for lunch and dinner, which I did. I would usually slice a cucumber and nibble on it too. No harm has been done!
Salads and similar dishes have helped me lose 10 kg in a month. It does not matter if you eat from home or outside, but prefer to eat at home because few places cook with clarified butter or butter. I am happy to have found the Ketogenic Diet Pakistan group on Facebook because I would not have been on a diet without achieving the desired results.
I'm still on a diet next month. Let me know if you want me to vlog my routine this month and leave all keto together! 😀
What is the Keto Diet and why the heck everyone in Pakistan is obsessed with this one