Monday Morning Weigh In After a Month on Keto

I began my Keto eating plan with intermittent fasting on August 24th. I am now finished with week five.

This month (September) I’ve lost a total of six pounds. My waist is smaller by about 1.5 inches. I’ve begun taking my blood pressure once again just to keep track of it now that I’m on this eating plan.

Because of my kidney cysts, my BP is usually high. I recently went to the dentist where they took my blood pressure and it was 155/92 – yup, high. I will be taking it on Monday mornings only to compare as I continue the diet. This morning it was 133/92. I’m not on any medication.

There are ways to measure the ketones in the body. One of the cheapest, and least reliable (so I’ve read) ways is to use urine test strips. I bought the Perfect Keto strips at Amazon (I am an affiliate and could make money from this link) and have been testing my urine at various times of the day. They are relatively cheap.

Keto test strips bottle
This is the brand I bought

At first I was getting a negative color, but soon after – like the next day – I began getting the 1.5 to 4.0 colors. From what I’ve read, that is all you need.

There is a lot of information online about measuring for ketosis and which types of monitors to use. The strips are definitely the cheapest, but after a while the ketones won’t show up in the urine – so “they” say. In other words, the strips won’t be accurate always.

If I had diabetes and really needed to know my levels, I would invest in a good meter, like one that uses blood. I’m not that serious about it. I won’t link to any sites here because so many are just out to make money. If you carefully search good sites (that are not full of ads) you can find decent info.

Ketone urine test strips
Level indicator on side of bottle

My Overall Feelings

I think I was going overboard with the cheesy meals. I do stress a bit about getting my calcium and nutrients. About a week ago I didn’t feel as good as I had been feeling. I lost only a tiny bit of weight that week too. The culprit was cheese and dairy, I believe. Now I have cut down on the cheese.

I’m still adjusting to this new way of eating and with only six hours of the day spent cooking and eating, it feels like I just about get two meals in! Since I don’t eat until about noon time, I have lots of morning hours to plan my two meals for the day.

I’m eating a lot more vegetables these days. I guess that without potatoes and onion rings as sides, I need to fill the gaps, and veggies it is. I really did eat a lot of potatoes. And yes, I miss them! Baked with yogurt, fried, potato pancakes, french fries….it’s probably my biggest craving.

These Keto biscuits are really good. I plan to make more.

Low carb Keto biscuits
Low Carb Yummy Biscuits For the Keto┬áDiet Simple and delicious – really

But I am losing weight, so good things are happening. Even though I eat less food, I never feel tired. Bread and carbs can do that, and I’m eating very few.

I’ve cheated a few times. I made pizza one day – real pizza with normal crust. But all in all I have done well. I’m not saying I plan to eat this way forever but I could follow this plan for quite a while. I want to see kidney changes, blood pressure dropping, and my waistline get smaller. Until then, I’ll keep at it.

Low Carb Yummy Biscuits For the Keto Diet

Cutting bread out of my diet has been the toughest part of this diet change. I suspect it is for many people. We grow up eating bread. Now I have found a biscuit recipe that is really delicious.

I’ve tried a couple of “bread recipes” that replace white flour with low carb almond flour and they were okay. I often eat the quick keto bread for breakfast because it is very quick to make. But it’s more of a corn muffin consistency – not really a piece of bread. It’s fine for breakfast but that’s about the only time I eat it.

I believe very little of what I see online, but these Keto biscuits sounded worth trying. Eating Keto means cheese, butter, and sour cream are good to eat, and these biscuits contain all three.

Low carb Keto biscuits
Simple and delicious – really

I followed the recipe exactly, using sour cream and shredded cheddar cheese. I only had a larger muffin pan that made six muffins, so I made six biscuits. Yup, I ate one, of course. They had to cook longer, by about five minutes. Even in the larger pan they are not huge biscuits, and I oiled it good but they stuck like mad.

See the recipe for Low Carb Keto Biscuits at Kirbie’s Cravings.

Change up the recipe and use yogurt in place of the sour cream. Use cream cheese, or another cheese in place of cheddar. Add herbs and omit the cheese, or cut down, for a lighter biscuit – maybe?

This one is a keeper, and I will be making them again.

Keto White Sauce With Cream Cheese

No recipe is needed to make a delicious casserole with ingredients on hand. Buy Keto-friendly food and then make something up. The basics are meat, vegetables and sauce.

I had a head of cauliflower to use, so I made up a quick chicken and vegetable casserole. All I needed was a Keto white sauce to mix in. There are many ad-filled sites that suggest this basic way to make white sauce, using various ingredients. This is how I made mine with the ingredients I had on hand.

Cook the Chicken and Cauliflower

I cooked the ground chicken in a fry pan.

Simmer the cauliflower heads (I cut them into small florets and discard the bigger sections) for a few minutes. Layer the chicken in the bottom of a casserole dish, and put the semi-cooked cauliflower over it.

Ground chicken
Cook the ground chicken

Making the Sauce

The sauce was made by melting 3-4 tablespoons of butter with half a package of cream cheese (4 oz.). Next time I think I would use more of these ingredients. Then….

white sauce butter and cream cheese
First melt butter and cream cheese

Stir in some heavy cream, half and half – whatever liquid is preferred. Add big spoonful of plain, Greek yogurt (not non-fat) – this is optional, but many recipes called for mayo, so I substituted yogurt. Heat on low.

Add black pepper, grated cheddar cheese (mozzarella could be used), and I added a few pieces of spicy pepper cheese for added flavor.

Simmer and stir on low heat until all cheese is melted. Pour the sauce over the meat and veggies which are layered in the casserole dish.

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

Chicken and cauliflower casserole
Ready to bake
Baked cauliflower and chicken casserole
Not bad

A white sauce casserole is a nice change from all the tomato sauce casseroles I’ve been making, like the Poblano peppers and beef, and meatball and zucchini dishes.

Additional Notes

I would prefer this with broccoli, but I had the big head of cauliflower to use up. A nice addition would have been spinach, to give it some color. Any type of meat would work in this recipe, and so would many vegetables.

Monday Morning Weigh In

I am now three weeks into my Keto / timed-eating (fasting) diet plan. Each Monday morning I will weigh myself and measure my waistline to track my progress. You don’t get to see my weight, but how many pounds I lose.

With PKD (polycystic kidney disease) the cysts are constantly growing and forming, which expands the waistline and gives us an overall feeling of being “full” all the time. At least that is how I’ve been feeling, until I began to make this change.

floor scale weight tape measure

As of today – after 3 weeks time – I have lost nine pounds total, and four pounds in the last week. My waistline has only shrunk about 1/2 inch.

My big goal is to see a decrease in my waist. I suspect that as the kidney cysts shrink my midsection will get smaller. I started this diet to help with my disease after reading Dr. Weimbs’ articles on diet, fasting and PKD.

I’m not one for getting on the scales, and haven’t for a long time. Weighing oneself is usually depressing, especially if the overall feeling is that weight is not coming off.

I Like the Fasting Part of This Plan

So far, my new meal planning is working out. The limited eating hours have been easy to follow. I found that it was tough to stop eating by 5:00PM, so I’ve moved that goal up to 6:00PM. Now, I fast longer in the morning to make up for later evening meals. When I wake up and start my day, I don’t eat anything, and drink only black coffee and water, until 11:00AM or Noon.

I can only fit two meals into this space of time, with maybe a small snack in between. Because of this I am eating less.

If I stop eating by 6:00PM, and don’t eat until noon the next day, I have fasted for 6 hours. If I do this every day of the week, I will have fasted 42 hours for the week.

The fasting part of this new eating regimen is quite easy for me.

And don’t fool yourself into believing that all those hours of not eating are really “fasting” hours. The body spends twelve hours dealing with the previous meal, and only after that are you truly “fasting”, or so I’ve read. Read about intermittent fasting at the DietDoctor site.

Changing the Food I Eat

I’m used to watching the amount of sodium in my food, and now I also have to look for carbs. Even some vegetables can contain lots of carbs. On a Keto diet, carbs for the day should not be more than 50 total. Some people go even lower.

I honestly don’t count carbs, just make myself aware if I eat anything high carb. Then I try to do better the rest of the day.

Some food that I ate and drank regularly are off my plate now. No more potatoes. Skip that occasional piece of toast with breakfast (but I found a good replacement bread for that), and don’t drink juice! I had already mostly given up pasta and rice and sandwiches, so that’s not tough for me.

But fruit, like bananas, remain part of my meal plan – occasionally. I could also do with a sweet potato now and then, and maybe oatmeal with an apple for breakfast.

Eating a big variety of good food is always a good idea, but now I am more aware of what all those carbs can do.