The food-related thoughts that may tempt you lately could cause you to long for nostalgic meals or make you think you hear your favorite foods calling out to you to eat them while you're likely home all day during these unprecedented times.
Don't worry; you're not alone. Many of us staying at home to keep others safe have befriended the fridge like its contents are our childhood besties, and this can lead to unwanted weight gain.
There's the familiar phrase, "the freshman 15", and the "self-quarantine 20" may become a similar phenomenon without intentional planning otherwise.
The combination of being homebound, the intensified challenges of homeschooling, and continuing to work if able to do so, can all equal increased levels of heightened stress.
Aside from the many physiological effects stress may cause, an increased and voracious appetite, or for some, a loss of appetite, may occur.
There are many elements to consider as we adjust to our current normal, and the transitionary period can make life feel unsettling. Still, there are some things we can all do to mitigate weight gain during this time.
Here are some of the methods we're using to stay focused and on track, and none include padlocking the fridge—don't act like you haven't considered it at least once in the past several weeks!
Eat lots of Healthy Fats, Protein, and Low-glycemic Produce
Consuming a diet rich in healthy fats is always advised on keto but may prove increasingly helpful during an especially stressful time.
Vitamins, nutrients, and rest are all a viable means to tamp down excessive eating. But eating certain foods pack a potent one-two punch because they are highly nutritious and satiating, which can lead to less mindless eating.
The following are some fantastic low-carb foods to consider adding into your regimen to remain on track.
- Dark leafy greens (e.g., spinach, kale, chard, spring mix lettuce, et al.)
- Bell Peppers
- Brussels Sprouts
- Green Beans
- Hearts of Palm
- Sea Vegetables (e.g., kelp, dulse, sea moss, etc.)
- Coconut (e.g., meat, milk, water, and butter, et al.)
Nuts (eat them in portioned amounts as not to overeat):
- Pili Nuts
- Brazil Nuts
- Macadamia Nuts
- Pine Nuts
- Hemp Seeds
- Chia Seeds
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Sunflower Seeds
- Grass-fed Beef
- Beef Jerky
- Corned Beef
- Fish (e.g., salmon, trout, kingfish, red snapper, saltfish, et al.)
- Heavy Whipping Cream
- Grass-fed Butter
- Yogurt (low sugar, like Fage 5%, Two Good, Cocoyo etc.)
- Cheese (limit amounts)
- Sour Cream
- MCT Oil
- Bacon Renderings
- Avocado Oil
- Grapeseed Oil
- Olive Oil
- Coconut Oil
Cravings are common if not eating enough on a ketogenic diet. Still, it's crucial to create a caloric deficit to facilitate weight loss.
Follow a Keto Meal Plan
Plus, in addition to including the foods noted above into your eating program, a personalized meal plan can make all the difference to keep you focused on your wellness goals.
We understand that passing up treats at the supermarket is challenging enough at any time, but can become more difficult if visiting the market while hungry or during times of heightened stress when inhibitions may be compromised.
A customized tool, like a personalized keto meal plan, is just the tool to guide you in the right direction and keep you away from those carb-laden middle isles of the grocery store.
Many people in our Konscious Keto community have experienced incredible results using our customized meal plans, and we'd love for you to share in the same success.
We've created a brief quiz to assist in your keto weight-loss journey, a plan designed specifically to achieve your desired goals. Take a few moments to answer our short quiz and gain immediate access to your own tailored keto meal plan for weight loss.
Loosen the Reigns a Bit on Keto ‘Junk’ Food
We would agree that whole and unprocessed foods are the best options on a ketogenic diet, but there are times when you need a little low-carb 'junk' food to prevent turning to high-carb snacks instead.
Fortunately, there are lots of keto-friendly snacks in stores, online, or that we can whip up in a few minutes. During times of high stress, it's common to gravitate toward sweets and higher carb foods, but there's no need to do so on keto.
There are a plethora of low-carb snack foods to enjoy on keto, both sweet and savory. Parmesan crisps and kale chips are easy to make at home, and there are many delicious sweet fat bombs to try to satisfy your cravings without elevating the number on the scale, as well.
Here are some of our favorite fat bomb recipes that you may want to enjoy with your family:
- Keto Cheesecake Fat Bombs
- Ultimate Chocolate PB Cheesecake Fat Bombs
- Super Creamy Strawberry Fat Bombs
- Keto Almond Cake (Fat Bomb)
- Keto Choc-Chip Cookie Dough Fat Bombs
- Creamy Chocolate Keto Fat Bombs
- Fudgy PB Keto Fat Bombs
- Chocolate Keto Pumpkin Fat Bombs
Also, for those of you who love savory snacks more than sweet treats, here are some low-carb, high-fat options to consider:
- Moon Cheese
- Parmesan Crisps
- Keto Bacon Cheese Crisps
- Ranch Savory Fat Bombs
- Zucchini Sticks
- Cucumber with Tahini
- Jerky Sticks
- Hard-boiled eggs with salted grass-fed butter and Kosher salt
- Pili Nuts with Himalayan Salt
- Bacon Zucchini Fries
- Keto Tortilla Chips
- Avocado Chips
- Keto Nacho Cheese Chips
- Keto Burger Fat Bombs
- Rosemary Keto Crackers
- Bacon Guac Fat Bombs
- Bacon Cabbage Dippers
- Bacon Asparagus Bites
- Keto Taquitos
- Bell Pepper Nachos
- Cajun Shrimp Kabobs
The keto options mentioned above are more well suited for snacks, but there are also some keto comfort foods to make during meal prep, refrigerate or freeze, and make sure you have a delectable and satisfying meal that feels like a cheat meal at a moment’s notice.
Use Meal Prep (and make sure you include sweet treats)
Again, meal prep is a secret weapon for all keto dieters because it makes life easier to navigate and less stressful as you work to manage every task imaginable under the sun during the quarantine.
Here are some of our favorite keto comfort meals that are perfect for advanced preparation. Plus, you can often prepare these dishes in less than 30 minutes:
- Keto BBQ Chicken
- Keto Taco Casserole
- Keto Chili
- Cheese Spinach Keto Puffs
- Keto Savory Pie with Zucchini
- Creamy Keto Pumpkin Soup
- Keto and Creamy Broccoli & Cheese Soup
- Finger Lickin' Crispy Keto Chicken Tenders
- Golden Keto Cauliflower Casserole
- Too Good to be True Keto Bagels
- Quick N' Easy Breakfast Keto Sausage
Again, many keto-friendly meals are easy to make during meal prep and store well in the refrigerator or freezer, so there's always a low-carb food option available to avoid diving into a bag of chips due to a lack of preparation.
Now, keep in mind that caloric deficits still matter if the goal is weight loss. It's possible to eat low-carb foods, but if you eat enough to produce a neutral or surplus caloric intake, you may notice a weight-loss plateau or weight gain.
Stay Hydrated as Hunger May Mask as Hunger
Thirst can come across as hunger, causing you to eat more than usual when chugging an ice-cold glass of water would do the trick. Plus, consuming more water is essential when following a keto diet since the body releases more body fluid and vitamins when in ketosis.
Plus, drinking an adequate amount of water may make you feel full and cause you to eat less by default. Also, staying hydrated helps to keep skin supple, hair moisturized, and nails strong yet pliable.
Focus on Eating Whole Foods
Here are some keto-friendly foods that can keep your macros on track and your weight steady or on the decline, even during the quarantine. Plus, eating the foods noted above that are high in fiber, and many are, also help you feel full and can reduce your net carb intake.
Plus, pairing nutrient-rich foods like dark leafy greens and healthy fats, like ghee, are a fantastic option to eat your micronutrients and macronutrients in one shot.
Here are some simple nutrient-dense and healthy fat pairings to add to your regimen to remain satiated and continue to lose weight even when homebound:
- Seared salmon topped with salted grass-fed butter
- Seared steak drizzled with grass-fed butter
- Brussels sprouts roasted in bacon renderings
- Fried catfish with a side of creamed spinach
- Faux mashed (cauliflower) potatoes with a hearty dollop of butter
- Low-carb noodles (e.g., Carba-nada, The Low Carb Bread Company, etc.) topped with oysters in olive oil and topped with Kosher salt
- Low-carb noodle Fettuccine
- Keto Chicken Parmesan Casserole
- Keto Pizza with Vegetable Toppings
- Beef Stew
- Keto Hot Pockets
- Butter Chicken in Cream Sauce with Cauliflower Rice
- Beef and Lamb Meatballs
- Keto Spinach Quiche
- Low-carb Zucchini Bake with Feta and Thyme
Concentrate on Eating Water-filled Foods
Again, water is essential on keto; we must remain hydrated. Thankfully, we can sip plain water, drink seltzer water, or eat water-rich foods to get the job done. Here are some water-filled and fibrous foods to help you stay vitalized on a low-carb, high-fat diet:
- Bone Broth
- Mineral Water
The gyms may be closed, but that doesn't mean you have to end your fitness regimen. There are many workout videos on YouTube or via on-demand platforms to access to keep active and torching calories.
Also, taking walks in the park—as long as you're social distancing—is another way to remain active, get some fresh air, and absorb some needed vitamin D all at once.
Plus, calisthenic exercises that use your bodyweight like pull-ups, push-ups, wall sits, and tricep activities using a chair are fantastic ways to stay in shape without any special equipment.
Also, running around the house or yard with the kids, or playing hide and seek, are other ways to keep moving throughout the day to burn off some energy. Also, dashing to prevent the kids from jumping off of furniture with reckless abandon is another great way to engage in a burst sprint and raise your heart rate—kidding but not kidding.
Maintain Social Relationships Virtually
Our ability to gather and socialize has undoubtedly changed recently. Nowadays, Zoom and Skype have become a lifeline for so many of us to stay connected.
While isolation in and of itself doesn't cause weight loss. Still, the residual effects of being housebound, like anxiety, depression, or loneliness can cause folks to turn to food more than usual for comfort.
Although texting is convenient and efficient, hearing a loved one's voice, especially when it comes to our older loved ones, can make a world of difference. Staying in touch can reduce stress for everyone involved and may also prevent emotional eating or bingeing.
Plus, it's helpful to connect with like-minded people online with similar wellness goals to remain encouraged, motivated, and focused despite living in today's new normal.
Journal and Release Your Feelings Instead of Eating Them
A lot of people are experiencing increased levels of concern, which may lead to enhanced instances of emotional eating and subsequent weight gain.
Writing in a journal daily, even if it's just a sentence or briefly noting your mood that day, can help release some pent-up frustration. Feel the emotions you’re experiencing, no need to suppress them as they won't disappear if ignored.
It may be helpful to note a list of pros and cons in your life at this time to establish a sense of perspective when times can feel predominantly uncertain and problematic.
Stay Occupied with a Hobby or Project
Do you love to write poetry? Are you an avid reader, or do you have a few household projects that you've put off because you've been so busy? Well, now is the perfect time to indulge in your passions and make improvements in your home to spruce it up and give yourself a sense of accomplishment.
Also, now's a perfect time for spring cleaning and putting up the clothes you won't wear until autumn—even if you're mostly wearing your outfits in-play at home.
Also, now's a fantastic time to do creative projects with the kids and explore their interests in new and inventive ways. Your playtime with the little ones could include living room slumber parties while watching captivating movies that the entire family can enjoy together or baking delicious keto chocolate chip cookies—whatever you like.
Use Online Exercise Platforms
Here are a few online exercise platforms to consider:
- Daily Burn
- CorePower Yoga On Demand
- Xtend Barre Online
- Peloton Virtual
Consider a Keto-friendly Meal Replacement Shake
Eating a balanced diet filled with whole foods is ideal, but sometimes a premium meal replacement shake is the perfect option when on-the-go or you're in the mood for a light meal, like before a rigorous workout.
We believe so strongly in the convenience and nutritional value of a high-quality meal replacement that we couldn't trust the creation of an ideal keto formula to anyone else; so we created our own!
Whether our strawberry cheesecake, creamy chocolate, or banana creme brûlée shake flavors, you're sure to find at least one you'll love—likely more than one to be honest.
Visit our site to learn more about our creamy keto shake that's GMO-free, hormone-free, and soy-free. Plus, the Konscious Keto shake is free of hormones and is gluten-free.
Plus, adding the Konscious Keto meal replacement shake to a personalized keto meal plan is an excellent way to further simplify your keto program.
Besides, the options in our personalized keto meal programs are delicious, rich in healthy fats, and the variety of dishes included are full of flavor; they'll even make you feel like you're cheating on your ‘diet’.
Click here to take our brief quiz, and you'll gain instant access to your customized keto plan to add another tool in your arsenal to get you through these trying times while maintaining your health goals.
Everyone is feeling the effects of our world's new normal; you're not alone. And the hopeful news is that you don't have to sacrifice or derail your wellness goals despite the upending of our previous existence.
Be kind and patient with yourself, remember that you're doing the best you can given the current situation, and take each day, or hour, at a time.
Enjoy some keto indulgent foods, rely on meal prep to stay focused, and find ways to stay active, or rest to recharge, as much as possible without self-judgment. Also, focus on your goals without pressuring yourself to achieve perfection because it doesn't exist.
Weight loss and improving your health is a process and a journey. Allow yourself room to deviate from your strict protocol a bit when needed and cut yourself some slack.
With consistency and determination, you will reach your health goals. Remain encouraged and stay connected to other like-minded people to avoid unnecessary temptation. You've got this and we're here to continually provide tips to ease your journey every step of the way.
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- Kossoff, E. H., & Freeman, J. M. (2004). The Ketogenic Diet. Epilepsy and the Ketogenic Diet, 53–61. doi: 10.1007/978-1-59259-808-3_3
- Successful Medical Weight Loss in a Community Setting. (2015). Journal of Obesity & Weight Loss Therapy, 05(01). doi: 10.4172/2165-7904.1000248
- Dahdouli, D. (2015). Weight Gain under Stress. Endocrinology & Metabolic Syndrome, 04(04). doi: 10.4172/2161-1017.1000199
- Dahdouli, D. (2015). Weight Gain under Stress. Endocrinology & Metabolic Syndrome, 04(04). doi: 10.4172/2161-1017.1000199