Dad’s Keto Friendly Deviled Eggs!

Although the odds are quite against it, if you’ve ever stumbled into the Starks’ Townhall Christmas Party – just outside of Rhinelander – then you’ve tried my dad’s “world famous” deviled eggs. I’m completely serious when I say my parents moved out of the township over three years ago and they still get invited every year just so my dad will bring his eggs.

They tend to be a basic staple at any family gathering, any graduation party, any potluck, or any other food-bearing event my parents are invited to. Consequently, after starting to live a keto lifestyle, I really missed the creamy and sweet little gems. So, I set out on a mission to replicate my favorite treat in a keto friendly way.

Needless to say, I succeeded. From the mayonnaise – made from avocado oil and other basic ingredients – to the paprika sprinkled over the finished product, these eggs meet all the expectations of my insatiable taste buds while staying well inside the range of my macros! The best part is, they taste just like the real thing. I can’t wait to bring these to all my local gatherings all summer long!

Dad’s Keto Friendly Deviled Eggsimg_0858.jpg

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 40 minutes

Makes 6 servings (24 deviled eggs)

Ingredients

Deviled Eggs

  • 12 Eggs
  • 1 Cup Keto Friendly Mayo
  • 1 1/2 tsp Mustard
  • 1 Tbsp Xyla
  • 1 Tbsp Dill Relish (I sub 2 Tbsp of Dill Pickle juice since I rarely have relish on hand!)
  • 1 tsp Paprika

Keto Friendly Mayo (a knockoff of Grass Fed Girls recipe!)

Directions

IMG_0856Prepping the Mayo

  1. Begin by ensuring all of your ingredients are room temperature, especially the egg. A quick method to get an egg to room temperature is run warm water over the egg.
  2. Combine yolk, salt, mustard, lemon juice, and white vinegar in a bowl and whisk together. I like to use a glass and a fork, personally.
  3. Slowly add the avocado oil – whisking continuously (this is REALLY important) – until the mixture begins to thicken and emulsify!
  4. Transfer it the mixture into a food processor – as usual, I use my ninja – and pulse for about thirty seconds, or until the mixture appears to be spreadable mayonnaise.
  5. Leave in the food processor! 

Prepping Eggs

  1. While you are making the mayo, boil one dozen eggs in the manner that you usually use.
  2. Peel the eggs.
  3. Cut each egg in half “like a hotdog”.
  4. Remove the yokes and place in the food processor with the completed mayonnaise.

Deviling the Eggs

  1. Add mustard, Xyla, and relish. Then pulse until img_0859.jpgthe mixture is creamy. (Note: (The original recipe calls for 2.5 Tbsp of sugar and sweet relish. In order to keep the recipe keto friendly, I changed to dill relish and Xyla. Since starting keto, I sincerely cannot handle much sweet, so please test the mixture and make sure it’s sweetened to your liking with your favorite keto sweetener!)
  2. Insert yolk mixture – evenly – into halved egg whites. I personally pour my deviled egg yolks in a Ziploc bag with the corner chopped off and squeeze it in, other’s use a cake decorator! Whatever fits your needs works just fine.
  3. Sprinkle with paprika and refrigerate for a half hour (or longer), then enjoy!

Calories: 406 – Fat: 38.4g – Net Carbohydrates: 3.3g – Protein: 13.2g

I am not a nutritionist or doctor! For precise nutrition facts, I recommend you calculate your own!
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Day Nine: 9 Things Everybody Needs To Know Before Starting Keto

The Best Side Effects

To begin, I’ve tried a lot of different methods for not only losing weight but also a447a303b7533ba246d78936e03d87e9maintaining. Today is my ninth day eating a ketogenic diet and this is by far the best dietary choice I’ve ever made! Since I started keto:

  • I’ve been around sick people and – for the first time in a really long time – I haven’t gotten sick.
  • I went an entire weekend without having to take nap.
  • I can stay up past ten p.m. and still feel amazing in the morning.
  • I wake up in the mornings feeling refreshed.
  • I have no heartburn (and before I started, I was taking Zantac every day).
  • I have regular bowel movements and my stomach doesn’t twist anymore.
  • I save money because I make the majority of my meals at home, from scratch.
  • I actually know what’s in the food I eat.

I feel better and, if I keep feeling better, I will never want to stop living a ketogenic life.

Nine Things You Need To Know Before You Start

Before I started living a keto friendly life, I read so many different blogs an articles because I wanted to know, for a fact, that I was making a healthy decision. I mean, it didn’t sound legitimate that – if I cut back on my carbohydrate intake and increased my fat and protein consumption – I’d actually lose weight.

However, while you’re surfing the web and checking out info, you most likely will run into recipes with foreign ingredients, worries about the keto flu, and many other concerning things. Then you might start questioning whether you can even do this. The answer is: Yes, you can. So, before you start freaking out about spending too much money and feeling lousy, check out these nine things you need to know:

Number One: The “Keto Flu” is very real, but also very preventable. On my first day, I literally had a meltdown in my car because all I could think about was a turtle sundae from Culver’s. My head was pounding, I was so tired, and – I swear – if anyone had so much as looked at me the wrong way, I would have attempted to attack them. So, yes, the “Keto Flu” is a very real thing.

Keto-fluPerhaps it’s a combination of your body going through sugar and/or carb withdrawals and dehydration, but you also have to remember that you are essentially “reprogramming” the way your body works – so your body is confused. It’s been burning certain fuels your entire life and suddenly you’re telling it to do something different.

So, to help curb the effects of the “Keto Flu”, drink a lot of water (I was pushing 96 ounces per day, using my Contigo water bottle), get the excess sleep your body is craving, and up your sodium intake (it’s okay, you need extra salt to retain water).

Number Two: There are some weird ingredients that you will eventually need. Unfortunately, this is true and the special ingredients aren’t always the most affordable – actually, normally they are just plain outrageously priced. That’s totally okay, though, because you don’t need them all right away. In fact, I haven’t needed any yet, but I keep purchasing them – one at a time – because I know that I might need them one day.

meme10A few of these weird ingredients that I’ve run across, so far, include cream of tartar, almond flour, guar gum, and xanthan gum. Together, buying these four ingredients will add about $45.00 to your shopping trip. However, if you buy one at a time, you can survive at least four weeks without need any of these ingredients and you add maybe $10.00 to your grocery total.

In case you can’t live without bread, some of the keto-friendly “bread” recipes – like Cheddar Garlic Biscuits – don’t even require any “fancy” ingredients. 

Number Three: Your ketone levels do matter, but don’t make them a primary focus. If I’m being completely honest, I didn’t even buy a box of Ketostix until my fifth day of maintaining a keto-friendly diet. I should note that I did invest in a Keto-Mojo for blood ketone testing last Friday (ordered it online, so I bought the Ketostix for initial testing). This was mainly due to the reasoning that – in accordance with basically everything I’ve read – the test strips for a blood monitoring device range from $3 to $5, on average; but if you by a Keto-Mojo Founder’s Club package, you get test strips for $.99 a piece – for life.

Back to the point of number three: yes, your levels matter. During the first week, keto-funny-memethough, you will most likely feel your body shift out of “Keto Flu” mode and into ketosis. You’ll suddenly just feel better and will probably have a gross, metallic, sweet taste in your mouth. Do realize, though, that people progress into ketosis at different paces; so, the speed that your friends obtain the goal may be different than the time it takes for you to do the same. Trust the system and don’t get discouraged.

Number Four: You need fiber so, for the love of God, eat veggies. Depending what version of the keto diet you are personally embarking on, there may be different “carb limits”. However, right now I’m eating less than  30 grams of carbohydrates per day and I can confidently say that the majority of those carbs are from natural sources of fiber – aka vegetables.LC-BG-veggies3_good_2400px_3 (1)

If your wondering why eating a lot of vegetables – and fiber – is important, just think about what happens if you accidentally eat too much cheese and then evaluate how much cheese you might add to your diet if you increase fat and protein intake. You don’t want to be constipated, do you?

Number Five: At first your friends might not understand, but they’ll come around. We live in a society that has lived of the premise of fat being bad since the 1960s so when you’re friends suddenly see you layering on the cream cheese and 732d3dc0114a1c788a1eadb5c53e2452butter, they might not completely understand. In fact, if they care about you, they’re likely to try to talk you out of it – especially if they don’t know someone who has tried to maintain a keto diet.

While this might be annoying or discouraging, let your results show them that it is working. If they’re concerned that you’re going mess up your health, check out my blog Keto & Cholesterol to scientifically argue with their reasoning. I have people in my life who don’t believe in – or understand – how the ketogenic lifestyle works, so you aren’t alone.

Number Six: Join a support group. It doesn’t have to be an in-person group. In fact, Facebook is loaded with groups of specific “types” of people – whether you be a veteran, woman, male, or powerlifter (or just about anything else). You might be thinking, “Oh, I can do this on my own!” You also might be right, but I can honestly tell you that, if you’re experiencing something that you might categorize as weird, someone else has experienced it too and the only way you’re going to find them – as well as their magical solution – is by searching for them. What better place to search than a keto specific group with thousands of members?

Number Seven: Know you’re likely to succeed. Did you know that the success rate for people sticking with a low-calorie diet is roughly 50%, versus the nearly 75% success rate of ketogenic eating? That means that, if you’ve tried different diets before and failed, you’re more likely not to do it again. I mean, three-out-of-four people succeed in maintaining a healthier life by committing themselves to the ketogenic lifestyle.

All you have to do is not be “the one”, cause we all know there’s always one.

Number Eight: Keto is a lifestyle, not a diet. While researching and planning on starting the keto “diet”, I saw this fact everywhere. Leading a ketogenic friendly life isn’t really a diet. Sure, when you start it, you might want to lose weight. Yet, while your on it and so many aspects of your health improve – from mental health to lower blood glucose levels – you’ll realize that you always want to feel energetic and better than before. Does that mean you’re committing to not eating bread for the rest of your life? Nah, not really. Take a break from keto, re-evaluate your macros (especially if you’re starting it for weight loss, those will change), eat some carbs – which will likely make you feel horrible – and then, bounce right back into your keto lifestyle.

Number Nine: Get creative! Here you stand, at the edge of a cliff that can change fab0740a556f064096e929b6614b4475your life from what it is to what it could be. The only thing is that you have to maintain a low-carb, high fat, and high protein diet. So, take those requirements and change them into stuffed chicken breasts, tasty salads, and delicious desserts. Recommendations for new recipes are everywhere and most of them are free. If you want some ideas, check out the Keto Recipes I’m Dying To Try!

Keto & Cholesterol

I would like to think that most people are, at least, aware that there are two very different kinds of cholesterol – High Density Lipoprotein and Low Density Lipoprotien, commonly referred to as HDL and LDL. Just in case you aren’t aware of how exactly they work, I’ll give you a brief lowdown.

HDL Cholesterol – The Good Guy

HDL cholesterol is our body’s own little clean up crew. The higher our HDL level is, the lower our LDL level is. This is because our HDL transports cholesterol that has been stored in our arteries to our liver, which then processes it and dispenses it from our body.

Cholesterol

LDL Cholesterol – The Bad Guy

Whereas HDL cholesterol is extremely beneficial, LDL cholesterol is not. This guy is the one that spreads cholesterol throughout our arteries and, unfortunately, leaves it there to build up into plaque. LDL cholesterol is frequently the underlying cause for chest pains, heart attacks, and strokes.

The Mayo Clinic suggests that, in order to keep the LDL cholesterol levels low, people eat a low sodium diet – full of fruits, veggies, and whole grains – while limiting their intake of animal fats and moderating their consumption of good fats. If you’re anything like me, red flags just popped up all over the keto lifestyle, which lacks fruit and whole grains and promotes the consumption of fat and/or protein.

The Good News

The good news is that there is literally so much research that demonstrates that living a keto lifestyle is actually extremely beneficial, especially in regards to keeping your HDL high and LDL low. To verify this information, I read through three academic journal articles that reflected on findings of three different studies, where obese individuals entered into a monitored ketogenic diet program.

Study Number One

This article reflects on a study that actually compared the results of a low-carb, ketogenic diet versus the results of a low fat diet. In order to participate in this controlled trial study, individuals had to be between the ages of 18 and 65 years with a body mass index (BMI) between above 30 kg/m2 – yet under 60 kg/m2 – and, finally, a desire to lose weight. Using a computer-generated randomization program, individuals were assigned to either the low carb or low fat diet.

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The ketogenic eaters were allowed to consume unlimited amounts of animal foods – meat, fish, and shellfish – and two cups of salad veggies, one cup of low-carb veggies, as well as four ounces of hard cheese. On the other hand, low-fat dieters were instructed by a registered dietitian to have a diet that consisted of “less than 30% of daily energy intake from fat, less than 10% of daily energy intake from saturated fat, and less than 300 mg of cholesterol daily.” (Yancy, William S., et al., 2004)

In the end, over 75% of the individuals participating in the low-carb (ketogenic) diet completed the entire 24 week study, where only 57% percent of those in the low-fat program lasted through the end. Stunningly, these ketogenic dieters had greater weight loss, reduction in triglyceride levels (which works with LDL cholesterol to cause strokes and heart attacks), and a notable increase in HDL cholesterol.

What does all this mean, though? Well, this first study indicates the following:

  • The ketogenic lifestyle is less difficult to stick with than the low-fat lifestyle.
  • Ketogenic eating actually increases the level of good cholesterol in our bodies.
  • The low-carb, ketogenic eating plan is a lot less confusing that the low-fat alternative (seriously, I can’t even understand the requirements they had to meet).

Study Number Two

The next scholarly article I reviewed was in regards to the results of a study that quinoa-salad-6looked at the long term effects of the ketogenic diet on obese participants with high cholesterol levels. In this diet, 66 individuals followed an eating plan that consisted of the following:

  • Less than 20 g of carbohydrates in the form of green vegetables and salad
  • 80–100 g of proteins in the form of meat – fish, fowl, eggs, shellfish and cheese.
  • Polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats (5 tablespoons olive oil) were included in the diet. (Dashti, Hussein M., et al., 2006)

In this study, there was a 74% completion rate for the 56 week study. After the first week, the levels of the participants HDL cholesterol increased and the level of the LDL cholesterol – and the level of its helper, triglycerides – significantly decreased. Not only that, but their blood sugar levels also dropped!

What we can see by looking at the results of the first two studies is:

  • The low-carb ketogenic diet has a three-out-of-four success rate!
  • The eating plans aren’t only simple, but they sound pretty delicious.
  • The lifestyle raises the good cholesterol, decreases the bad, and even lowers blood sugar levels.

Study Number Three

The final study I reviewed was focused on the long-term effects of ketogenic eating on obese individuals. In this case, the 83 participants were required to begin the program with a BMI greater than 35 kg/m2, high blood sugar, and high cholesterol.

Again, the participants were presented with a fairly 6a2b7accd3610c99cd8043ff0c0e7972--hey-girl-meme-girl-memessimple eating plan that consisted of 20 – 30 grams of carbs from green veggies and salads, 80 – 100 grams of protein from animal foods and cheese, and polyunsaturated or monounsaturated fats. They were then monitored at eight weeks, 16 weeks, and, finally, 24 weeks. (Dashti, Hussein M, et al., 2004) During each “check-up”, the following was reflected:

  • A decrease in LDL Cholesterol, which continuously dropped in levels.
  • An uninterrupted decrease in triglycerides.
  • A steady increase of HDL Cholesterol.
  • A steady decrease of blood sugar levels.

One thing I particularly liked about this study is that it discusses other benefits of the ketogenic lifestyle, including it’s ability to be a mood stabilizer for bi-polar disorders and depression. Furthermore, it helps prevent osteoporosis and chronic diseases that result from high sugar intake. Finally, there are less – or no – side effects for obese individuals who utilize the ketogenic lifestyle to lose weight, unlike many quick-fix weight loss drugs that are on the market today.

What This Means

So, here we sit. I’ve just gave you the low down on three different studies that were conducted on three different groups of people by three different sets of Doctors. All of these studies present data that goes directly against what has been believed for decades by the general population. Not only can a low-carb diet that is high in unsaturated fats help people lose weight, but it can also decrease LDL cholesterol, blood sugar levels, and triglycerides all the while increasing HDL cholesterol – also known as the good cholesterol.  Additionally, unlike the fad low-fat diets and weight loss supplements flashing across our television and computer screens regularly, there are minimal negative side effects.

Not only can a low-carb diet that is high in unsaturated fats help people lose weight, but it can also decrease LDL cholesterol, blood sugar levels, and triglycerides all the while increasing HDL cholesterol – also known as the good cholesterol. 

I’m not a doctor, but I think that the conclusion is obvious: the ketogenic lifestyle is not only easier to maintain, but more likely to beneficial to your health and well-being than the alternatives.

Bibliography

  • Dashti, Hussein M, et al. “Long-Term Effects of a Ketogenic Diet in Obese Patients.” Experimental & Clinical Cardiology, Pulsus Group Inc, 2004, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2716748/.
  • Dashti, Hussein M., et al. “Long Term Effects of Ketogenic Diet in Obese Subjects with High Cholesterol Level.” Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, vol. 286, 2006, pp. 1–9., doi:10.1007/s11010-005-9001-x.
  • Yancy, William S., et al. “A Low-Carbohydrate, Ketogenic Diet versus a Low-Fat Diet To Treat Obesity and Hyperlipidemia: A Randomized, Controlled Trial.” Annals of Internal Medicine, American College of Physicians, 18 May 2004, annals.org/aim/fullarticle/717451/low-carbohydrate-ketogenic-diet-versus-low-fat-diet-treat-obesity.