WHAT IS THE KETO DIET?
The ketogenic diet is a very low carb, high-fat diet. Rice, pasta, legumes, sugar and starchy vegetables are out; lean meat, eggs, cheese and low carb vegetables are in.
Low Carb High Fat (LCHF) Dietitian Vicky Kuriel offers six week monitored low carb programs from Melbourne health and wellness clinic, Eat Play Thrive. "The keto diet is a specific combination of macronutrients (carbohydrate, protein and fat) that allows an individual to enter into a state of nutritional ketosis," Kuriel explains.
"Typically, this involves a significant reduction in carbohydrate, moderate amounts of protein and an increase in fat. In most individuals, nutritional ketosis can be achieved with a total carb intake of less than 50g per day. To keep carb intake below this level all sugary and starchy food needs to be removed from the diet."
While the specifics vary, depending on who is conducting the program, the keto diet generally consists of 70 per cent of calories from healthy fats, 20 per cent from protein, and 10 per cent from carbs.
The transition from a normal diet to a very low carb diet can be hard: side effects include headaches and low energy. "I pushed through this phase, which took a good week or two," Kourt explained via her app. "I also did a 'treat yourself' day once a week, which really helped get me get through the few months that I did this diet."
As always, before going on the ketogenic diet—or any other diet, for that matter—consult your GP.
WHAT IS KETOSIS?
When you're on the keto diet, fat is your key source of energy, rather than carbs. "[Ketosis] is the state that we will default to in the absence of food for an extended period of time," Kuriel clarifies. "It is also a state we will enter into when carbohydrates are significantly reduced in our diet. The reduced levels of carbohydrates forces our bodies to find an alternative fuel source."
When your body breaks down fat for energy, acids called 'ketones' build up in the body. This process is called ketosis. As registered dietitian Cynthia Sass explained to Health, "After three to four days on a ketogenic diet, back-up stores of carbohydrates, called glycogen, become depleted and ketosis kicks in, triggering some weight loss and the appearance of a leaner physique."
KOURTNEY KARDASHIAN'S KETO DIET BREAKFAST
Every morning, Kourtney starts her day by taking a Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides ($33 at iHerb). "About 20 minutes after the collagen, I usually drink one tablespoon of organic apple cider vinegar mixed into a glass of water," she says on her website. "Both of these habits have a ton of health benefits that affect everything from your skin to the way your body processes nutrients."
Why apple cider vinegar? For Kourtney, a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in the morning helps to curb sugar cravings.
Whilst on the keto diet, Kourtney practiced intermittent fasting. Each day, she would fast from 7pm until after her morning workout, at approximately 10:30/11am. In addition to that, she would also fast for 24 hours one day per week, only drinking bone broth and green tea.
Kourtney is borderline-famous for her interesting breakfast of choice: avocado pudding. Keto diet or no keto diet, the 39-year-old reaches for her signature avocado pudding most mornings. She once shared the recipe on her app; turns out, it's more of an avocado-based smoothie than a pudding and takes less than 10 minutes to make. The recipe consists of: one whole organic avocado, organic cane sugar, half a cup of organic milk and one tablespoon of raw manuka honey. To make her go-to breakfast keto friendly, we imagine Kourtney would have substituted sugar and honey for Stevia.
KOURTNEY KARDASHIAN'S KETO DIET LUNCH
For lunch, Kourtney kept it simple with "fresh salads with home made dressing."
"I love salads, so I usually have one for lunch every day with some type of protein added, like chicken or salmon," Kardashian says on her app. "Whenever possible, I try to make my own simple balsamic or ginger dressing since store-bought dressings have lots of unnecessary sugar and preservatives."
She usually drinks a hot green tea right after lunch.