21 October 2017
I have read a lot of diet books over the years. Most start by extolling the health benefits of their particular eating plan, which is always convincing. Okay, so most of them sensibly focus on the importance of prioritising fresh fruit and vegetables over processed food (as an aside, this is one of my biggest issues with a lot of vegan and vegetarian food—it’s highly processed. I can’t believe eating a highly processed GM soy product is can be healthier than eating grass-fed meat, or ocean-caught fish).
Typical diet books then move onto the specifics of the eating plan, complete with recipes. And that’s where the ones I’ve read fall down: the recipes are usually for a family of, but I’m the only one on the diet. Yes, I guess the logic of the four-person recipes is that no one wants to cook themselves separate food to the rest of the family. But it means that the diet recipes have to suit everyone in the family … and they never do. I’ve tried.
The Keto Zone Diet is the same, but different.
Yes, preaches the benefits of the keto eating plan, it emphasises fresh food, and it includes a handful of recipes. But it’s not prescriptive, which means it’s easier to follow, and easier to integrate into a family.
What is a keto zone diet?
Put simply, the idea is that the low-fat and low-calorie diets dominating the industry don’t work (as anyone caught on the diet-weight gain treadmill knows). The Keto Zone diet is a variation of the famed Atkins diet, which focuses on losing weight by limiting carbohydrate intake and eating moderate amounts of fat. Fat makes us feel full, while limiting carbs help us not to feel hungry between meals.
In practice, this means no bread, pasta, rice, corn, cereals, potatoes, sugar, or alcohol, limited fruit and limited starchy vegetables (like sweet potatoes and beans). It means moderate protein and fat (e.g. meat, dairy, and nuts), and unlimited low-starch vegetables. He also emphasises the importance of using good fats (such as avocado oil, coconut oil, olive oil, or butter from grass-fed cows) not bad fats (such as canola oil or soybean oil).
And that’s what I like about the Keto Zone Diet.
It’s workable. I can cook and serve the whole family the same food. We just choose our proportions. I eat lots of vegetables, a little meat, and no pasta or potato.
It’s simple, it’s workable, and it’s sustainable.
I won’t go into the science—you can read the book for that. I recommend you do, because this diet does go against a lot of the mainstream dietary advice. If following a low-fat, high-carb diet works for you, then great. Go with it. But I feel constantly hungry on a low-fat diet. I lose weight, but gain it all back again (sound familiar?). I don’t get so hungry on a low-carb diet, which has to be a good thing. If I’m not hungry (and can withstand the temptation to eat when I’m not hungry), then it’s going to be easier to lose weight.
There are a handful of simple recipes at the end of The Keto Zone Diet book, with an emphasis on simple. They are all for one person (well, except for the mayo and seed bread, but both will keep).
It doesn’t matter that there aren’t many recipes.
The internet is full of #Keto options, including cauliflower rice, cauliflower hash browns, and cauliflower pizza base, and a bread substitute or pancakes made from egg and cream cheese (the pancakes are a little sweeter than my regular recipe, but that means I don’t need the maple syrup).
If you’re curious about the keto diet, then Dr. Colbert’s Keto Zone Diet is a good introduction. If you’re a keto ninja, then this probably isn’t the book for you—although it might be a good book to own in paperback, to show your unbelieving friends that there is some real medical science behind your diet.
Thanks to Revell and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review.