I’ve been asked a bunch of times what is the hardest part of following a ketogenic diet. For me, it’s definitely travel. What is it for other people? I found this (admittedly possibly flawed, but informative nonetheless) survey someone had done on Reddit and decided to aggregate the data, and present it in a more readable way. The survey was done by messaging 142 people. 76 responded to the open-ended question, and here’s what they had to say.
Getting the macros was the obvious #1, and that’s definitely something I struggled with when I was starting out. I found the best way to combat that is to make a plan, have only “safe” foods on-hand, and then just eat as much as you want.
Social pressure and eating out is a much more interesting case. There is a lot of literature about how groups of people tend to resist any individual’s attempt to change (since that would cause them to remap their mental models, and that’s work, and people are lazy). It’s reminiscent of a story I heard a lot growing up about how if you put one crab in a bucket it will crawl out, but if you put several crabs in a bucket, they’ll pull each other back in if any of them gets close to escape.
When we started on the ketogenic diet, we were living in a pretty isolated area of Florida when we started the ketogenic diet, and weren’t very social at the time. So social pressure did not affect us too much. I also think that this is a fear more than a concern. “Jenny isn’t eating the bun of the slider, that’s different,” is a much more benign feeling than most people probably think. I think that 99% of the time people are thinking about themselves, and probably not paying much attention to you. So be brave! Nobody is going to shove a piece of bread in your mouth.
I was very surprised to see Travel listed here as only “1”. Like I said above, that’s still an area of active improvement for us. I’ve seen good ideas for how to do it, and we generally take my whole morning coffee setup on trips – blender, scale, MCT, butter. I must say, unpacking my blender into a hotel room is pretty comical. But we don’t quite have that sorted out, and are working on in.
Another thing I was surprised not to see is kids meals. Another area of active improvement for us is figuring out how to best feed our 5 year old. A fully ketogenic diet is best, and I’m not concerned about that healthwise, but since she spends a lot of time at school and with friends and all that, I want her to feel free to eat as desired in those contexts. We’re making progress and it’s getting generally better, but again, I was surprised to not see it mentioned (though it’s probably due to the demographics of reddit).
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