Never Thought I’d do the Keto Diet! The Secrets I’ve Learned!
Scott Collins Naturopath
Don’t you just feel like rolling your eyes back when someone starts talking about diets. So not being one for promoting diets or jumping on fads, in late 2019 I decided to give Keto a crack. Now in my 50th year, I have found that stubborn belly fat was becoming a little hard to shift, so I decided to do the Ketogenic. As you get older, you learn to never say never, as I was pretty surprised saying yes to a diet.
In principal the Keto Diet is a high fat, moderate protein and low carbohydrate diet. The reason I looked at keto was because what I was doing wasn’t working. I was eating a whole lot of grains and these “So-Called Wholefoods” were ending up on my belly. I was drowning in carbs especially grains. What I found that these grains were spiking my insulin
What surprised me was how easy it was to transition from a diet significantly made up of grains to one that is virtually nil. So all I had to do was kick the grains and increase my good fats and make sure that I had enough protein and low carb veggies (ie no sweet potato, pumpkin, and potato). It was fascinating to see how quickly the weight around my middle started shifting and I also noticed body was looking stronger too.
Just as Intriguing I wasn’t doing that much more exercise and yet the keto diet was working. OMG, I wish had done this so much sooner. Grains? Yep, grains where contributing to my abdominal fat and boy did I love grains. (We’ll talk about grains in more detail another time). For now, sticking to a low carb no grain program was working.
I had reached a point that I noticed I had plateaued, so began the search for more answers. And what I am about to tell is you is a “DOH” kind of moment. After doing more research what I found that the grains/carbs helped my body to retain water.
During the diet my urine started to become a darker colour, which is typically a sign of dehydration. Yet, I was drinking water! From the research I found that the no grains / keto diet I was doing was contributing to me losing water and fast. When you burn fat, the body needs a lot more water, requiring 2.5litres minimum per day. Keeping an eye on water intake is essential if you’re doing a keto diet! So I started to up the water. S
The signs of dehydration on a keto diet may appear as dizziness, flu-like, fatigue, dark urine and nausea.
If you are feeling horrible on a keto diet it could that you need more salts. Salt is as critical as water. If you are losing water, you’re also losing salts (minerals). On a restricted keto diet, you may not be consuming enough salt and this can have an impact on how you feel. According to Australian Government daily salt requirements are approximately 2000mg per day. So you could need more if you’re exercising and sweating losing electrolyte salts.
One trick is to add lake salt or minerals into your water whilst on a keto diet. Minerals like magnesium and potassium can also be affected. You may need to add a broad-spectrum mineral supplement as another consideration. It’s easy to get distracted when it comes to calculating water intake so find a 600ml-1000ml bottle so you can work out how much you have consumed each day. Just add minerals or salts to the bottle water and now you can calculate salts and water consumption.
Is there a Connection to Breast Cancer and Heavy Metal Toxicity?
Scott Collins Naturopath Consciousness Coach & Founder of Grasses of Life
With the overwhelming tide of industrialisation and the insatiable demand for minerals by industry heavy metal toxicity poses a serious risk to human health. Heavy metals such as Cadmium, Lead and Mercury have been well studied and well documented in regard to causing detrimental health effects.
It’s almost impossible to avoid heavy metals on a daily basis, coming from dietary sources (soil contamination), occupational sources and from the environment. Exposure (or a build-up in the body) is highly connected to an increased risk of cancer development.
It’s no surprise to discover, Cancer is now the 2nd leading cause of death globally according the World Health Organisation. Cadmium is one such metal that represents a serious risk to human and with strong associations to the development of prostate cancer and breast cancer. It’s believed that cadmium causes oxidative stress which alters gene expression and Damages DNA.
Exposure to Cadmium is primarily from cigarette smoke (direct and indirect inhalation) and predominantly dietary sources for non-smokers. The problem with Cadmium is how the metal behaves like oestrogen. Cadmium is a metalloestrogen, which is a class of metals known to mimic natural oestrogens of the body. Surprisingly, Cadmium caused oestrogenic responses in the body affecting the endometrial lining, progesterone receptors, mammary tissue density.
Cadmium’s influence over breast tissue is significant which affects gene expression as well as altering normal tissue development. Of concern is how Cadmium increases tumour cell proliferation, and problematic in hormone dependent cancers. There is a great need for research in this area but enough to warrant a strong a suspicion around Cadmiums role in the development and progression in Breast Cancer.
Specific nutritional interventions are well warranted, in addition to specific chelation strategies as a proactive strategy to increase the elimination of protagonist heavy metals from the body and re-balance trace elements (minerals).