Benefits of Keto Chow over a normal diet (including other high-carb powdered foods like Soylent and People Chow)

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Benefits of Keto Chow over a normal diet (including other high-carb powdered foods like Soylent and People Chow)

This entry is part 48 of 176 in the series Ketogenic Soylent

This is adapted from a really good write-up on reddit.com/r/soylent – If you want to know more about why Ketogenic Diets work check out my review of “Why We Get Fat: And What to Do About It

The aim with nutritional ketosis is to get under a certain threshold of carbohydrates so your body is forced to start burning stored fat. There are some other benefits too, especially for people with metabolism problems and issues with insulin; most people use it for sustainable weight loss. To achieve ketosis you have to stay under 30-50 (depending on metabolism) grams of carbohydrates per day which can be difficult some times, especially when you are first starting keto and aren’t sure what you can and can’t eat. Using a ketogenic complete meal replacement like Keto Chow makes hitting your net carb goal much easier while assuring you’re getting all the vitamins, minerals and other essentials. It’s also usually less expensive than subsisting on bacon and cheese.

Being in nutritional ketosis has a bunch of benefits:

  1. Your blood sugar stabilizes a lot, only going up and down a bit in response to protein. This will also cause changes to how your body uses insulin (plus it needs far less insulin). Along with all of this your body stops producing as much hunger hormones like Ghrelin.
  2.  With the change in blood sugar and insulin, your fat cells are switched from a “gotta catch ’em all” state of hoarding to releasing stored fat for energy.
  3. Your tissues store glucose coupled with water (glycogen). Often when first starting keto and those reserves are depleted and the water comes out you’ll lose a bunch of weight – though it doesn’t happen to everyone.

1 and 3 makes sticking with the diet easier. The abrupt loss of a bunch of water weight can really get people to stick with it (personally I lost 4 pounds my 4th day). Less hunger hormones gives you more will-power. In my own experience and in that of many others it makes dieting far more enjoyable – instead of “I’m always hungry all the time and am about to die!”

1 and 2 makes it easier to eat with a caloric deficit even if you have no will power.

2 gets your body burning fat stores, which is kinda the point right?

Now for the disadvantages:

  • There is a change-over period (4 days, more or less) where your body is going to revolt a bit. You’ll likely have cravings for carbohydrates and you will likely feel hungry quite a bit. Soon, however, your body will give up and switch to ketosis. After a while the desire for carby food may completely disappear. I recommend starting Keto Chow at a higher calorie amount (2000 or so depending on your needs) so you can concentrate on kicking carbs. As time goes on you can lower the calories.
  • During this same transition period, if you don’t watch your electrolytes you may feel weak, disoriented or light headed. It’s often called the “keto flu” because it can feel like you have the flu. Your body needs more electrolytes in ketosis and it’s even worse while you are burning up that glucose+water reserve and dumping electrolytes. This additional requirement is why the Sodium and Potassium levels in Keto Chow are so high. Easy fixes: chicken broth or pickle juice.
  • Keto Chow has a lot more fiber in it that many people are accustomed to. It’s probably a wise idea to take a pro-biotic (I use this one, also available at Costco – works great). There’s a chance you may have some loose bowels at the very beginning. This guy has a useful tip: “I found quickly that an Imodium took care of that problem and because you aren’t taking in tons of food mass you don’t have to worry about backing up if it works too well.”
  • “Bursty” muscle action like lifting weights or sprinting often takes a hit with less glucose available. The upside is that endurance for other activities (after about 2 weeks) will go through the roof. It’s one of the reasons Ketogenic diets are fast becoming a preferred diet for competitive marathon runners.

If you can get past these hurdles, your body will adjust and you’ll actually have more energy losing weight with fewer calories than they did eating normally – at least in my own and many other’s experience.

Do you have to only eat Keto Chow? No, but you do need to stick to high fat, moderate protein, low carb foods. If you “cheat” you’re actively sabotaging your progress. Got the hankering for some cake? eat some bacon. A single slice of wonder bread is enough to erase several days worth of progress. Seriously: go grab some string cheese, some pork rinds or anything else that is keto friendly if you absolutely need to snack. Here is a handy guide to what you should and should not eat

keto-paleo-diet-food-pyramid

Series Navigation<< Mixing 3 meals of Keto ChowPreparing a week of Keto Chow powder – video >>
By | 2016-10-24T11:36:40+00:00 March 23rd, 2015|Categories: Keto Chow, Ketogenic, Soylent, Weight Loss|Tags: , , , , |7 Comments

About the Author:

Chris Bair is a computer geek and SalesForce.com system administrator for his "day job". He became involved in the powdered foods (aka "soylent") movement in January 2014, originally with a conventional recipe and later switching to a high fat, low carb "ketogenic" variant on October 2014. In January 2015 he created the recipe for Keto Chow and released it without restriction for anyone to use, at the same time he began mixing the recipe up for people that wanted a finished product and has seen steady growth in the business every month since. Chris has lived in Utah for most of his life, except for a few years living in Chile where he learned Castillian. Chris and his wife have two sets of twins with a couple singltons thrown in for good measure.

7 Comments

  1. Rachel March 29, 2015 at 7:58 pm - Reply

    I just ordered my first round of Keto Chow: one week’s worth of vanilla and several sample packs of the various flavors (except cinnamon bun, which is out of stock, and chocolate, which I can’t stand). I’m feeling hopeful for the first time in a while. I’ve been doing keto since January, but haven’t experienced the results I’d hoped for, in spite of my strict adherence to the rules. The other day, it hit me: while it was certainly good riddance to end my bread and cereal habit, it also inadvertently cut me off from my one source of micronutrients. I’m not into taking multivitamins, so I’d really come to rely on the ‘fortified’ so-called foods I was ingesting. When I switched to keto, I took myself away from them, and since all the kale in the world couldn’t make up for that, I’ve found myself lethargic and generally out of sorts without knowing why. Also, I’ve been going through about $40 worth of food every few days, and that’s simply not sustainable.

    I just finished a KetoSoy sample (my first time ordering a ketogenic meal-replacement), and while I was pleased with the nutrient stack, I hate chocolate-flavored everything, and since KetoSoy only comes in chocolate, no more KetoSoy. I’m glad to see Keto Chow comes in so many flavors — also, it’s cheaper — and I’m hoping I’ve finally found an affordable staple I can mostly live on.

    So in summary, keto’s definitely a good idea, but the lack of micronutrients nearly did me in. The past few weeks, I’ve found myself eating more and more, which has baffled me, since this way of eating is supposed to quash your appetite to near-nonexistence. In the face of the expense and the lack of weight loss, I was very close to throwing in the towel. I’m hoping I’ve landed on a solution and that these meal replacement shakes, along with MCT oil, which I’ve heard is the missing ingredient for a lot of people failing to see success on low-carb and keto, will help me finally attain the results I’m looking for.

    So just a few words for fellow browsers. I’ll be back with my thoughts on the different flavors, once they arrive. 🙂

  2. vasilios April 28, 2015 at 8:43 pm - Reply

    I have a question that I’m hoping you can help with :

    I currently do a 2hr martial arts course 3 times a week and it is a combination on intense strength cardio portion in the beginning, with more endurance requirement the 2nd half..

    I was also planning on doing HIT another 2 times per week.

    I am wondering if I am going to hit a wall going on keto and not be able to finish the class/HIT workout.

    which leads me to wonder if you have any experience with a targeted keto diet where you have some carbs before each workout to help you get through…and if I should try that, or if the “performance issues” with keto are overblown and i shouldn’t worry about it..

    Thanks!

    • chris April 29, 2015 at 9:54 am - Reply

      Keto should actually help with cardio stamina (after the adaptation period, at first you’ll have less energy but give it two weeks) but the HIT will be more difficult unless you consume an appropriate amount of carbs for the workout.

      I haven’t done much training while on keto so you’re getting second hand info. Over at http://www.reddit.com/r/ketogains there’s a TON of info about how to do exactly what you’re asking about. Granted, they’re doing keto the “normal way” instead of with a meal replacement like I do but you’ll get the idea.

  3. […] HERE is a terrific discussion as an intro into the theory and practice of ketosis. […]

  4. […] I’ll be replacing 2 meals with a lowcarb high protein shake of about 400 calories called Keto Chow. […]

  5. stacey April 27, 2016 at 5:54 pm - Reply

    I am already off all wheat. Could I use this as a breakfast or lunch replacement for weight loss and if so, would I still experience Keto flu? Just got over the wheat flu.. .

    • chris April 27, 2016 at 7:18 pm - Reply

      It will only truly work well for weight loss if the rest of the food you eat is also high fat, moderate protein, low carb (keto friendly) – essentially you’d follow the “keto food pyramid” above.

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