My Hunger Crushing Ketogenic Berry Smoothie

Some mornings, you just don’t have time to cook, but you don’t want to leave the house on an empty stomach. For these mornings, I make a coconut kefir berry smoothie.

Coconut milk has fewer carbohydrates than regular milk and fermenting it to turn it into kefir adds probiotics to help you digest better as well as reduces the carbohydrate count as the bacteria eat up some of the sugars in it.

The berries are a fun flavor. You can swap them out for some vanilla if you prefer. Because berries are a little tart and kefir can be a bit bitter, I mix in a teaspoon or two of zero carbohydrate sweetener, like swerve.

The health benefits of coconut oil are immense. Coconut oil contains medium chain triglycerides that will help you boost ketones and get into that fat burning zone.

 

Coconut oil is a good source of medium chain triglycerides. Medium chain triglycerides are converted in the liver into ketones that can be used by your body as fuel instead of glycogen. Your body uses them for immediate energy rather than storing them. Research has demonstrated that MCTs are thermogenic and therefore great fat-burners.

Try this coconut berry smoothie as one way to incorporate coconut oil and medium chain triglycerides into your daily ketogenic diet.

Here’s my ketogenic berry smoothie recipe:

  • 1 cup coconut milk kefir
  • 1/2 cup frozen berries
  • 1-2 tablespoons melted coconut oil (for healthy fats and energy)
  • 1 teaspoon Swerve

Blend it together in a blender for 30 seconds to 1 minute or until it looks smooth. Enjoy!

You can adjust the coconut oil up if you are trying to hit your macros and need more fats. I’ve added as much as 3-4 tablespoons of melted coconut oil before and it still tasted great, although more coconut flavor than I prefer. Also, you can skip the swerve or add more to your taste. 1 teaspoon is just where I like the sweetness. The net carbohydrates for this drink come in about 8. Two carbohydrates for the kefir and six for the frozen berries.

Time saving tip: I use the Magic Bullet Blender to blend up my smoothies. The blender cups can be used to drink out of saving me time washing the containers!

 

Easy Exercises to Lose Weight At Home

Going to a gym can be intimidating for many people. For moms, it can seem like an impossibility because they have to juggle childcare, work, and the job of keeping up a home. You can work a lot of exercise into your daily routine without requiring a ton of time commitment.

Focus on the major muscle groups to maximize your weight loss.

If you don’t have a ton of time on your hands, you’ll want to work on the exercises that build the largest muscles first. These are going to be squats! Squats are not easy, but they are incorporated into almost every activity of daily living.

You do a squat as you sit down and when you get out of a chair. To effectively make the most of the squats that you do during your day, pause right before you sit down. You should be able to feel your muscles working. Rise slowly from the chair making sure that you feel your legs and gluteus maximus engaging.

Lunges

These can be done when you are picking up items from the floor. They can also be worked into a vacuum cleaning routine. So, you can knock some of these out when you are cleaning up your home!

Arm raises

If you have a baby, you can lift it over your head. Otherwise, you can put objects away on high shelves. If you don’t have weights, you can raise cans of food above your head. Since these are lightweight, you’ll want to do at least 10-20 repetitions at a time.

Cardio

Getting your cardiovascular workout in during the day. When you are at home doing tasks around the house, it is nearly impossible to log a mile or two in here and there. You can increase your cardiovascular efforts with whole body motions. So, picking those socks up off the floor and putting them where they belong will boost your heart rate especially if you are doing it quickly. Simply increase the speed at which you accomplish tasks. Think faster. Walk to the next room faster. Pick things up faster.

Incorporate a lot of these Exercises for Lazy People into your daily routine. The more movement that you get throughout your day, the more calories that you end up burning!

The Best Ketogenic Snacks For A Busy Lifestyle

On the ketogenic diet, you may discover that you really don’t need to snack! All the fats that you consume will provide plenty of energy to keep you going throughout the day. However, there are times when you don’t know where your next meal is coming from. Traveling and road trips are times when it is better to have a ketogenic snack handy because you don’t know if the next restaurant you will be at will have much more for you than a simple chicken salad.

Here are some of the best ketogenic snack ideas that you can make that travel well and can tide you over until you can prepare a wonderful ketogenic meal for yourself!

HOMEMADE KETOGENIC SNACK IDEAS

 

  • Celery sticks
  • Cucumber slices
  • Pepper sticks
  • Olives
  • Dipped in cream cheese
  • Deviled eggs
  • Make fat bombs

 

ON THE GO KETOGENIC SNACK IDEAS

Sometimes, you don’t have time to pack your own snacks, but there are some wonderful pre-packaged options out there that are still yummy and ketogenic!

  • Seaweed snacks (very low carb, salty and almost like a potato chip)
  • Meat sticks
  • Beef jerky (check the carbohydrate count, many are made with sugar)
  • Protein bars (check nutrition label to make sure you stay within your macros!)
  • Fat Snaxs cookies

 

 

 

The Better than Coffee Chocolate energy bars have 8 grams of carbohydrate, which can fit well into a daily ketogenic diet as long as you aren’t consuming more than 12 grams of carbohydrate for your other meals. Many people are able to do this by focusing on proteins and leafy green vegetables, so when they do need a snack, they can indulge with an energy bar!

FAT BOMBS AS A KETOGENIC SNACK

One thing that you can do is make fat bombs. I’m not particularly skilled at fat bombs. I’ve tried my own recipes a few times, but haven’t quite found my groove with fat bombs. Sometimes they are so yummy, I want to eat all of them at once. Other times, I just leave them in the freezer and forget about them. However, they are great at increasing your fat intake for the day and providing you with the energy that you may need. There are lots of recipes for them online as well! Check them out and try your hand at fat bombs. They just may become your next ketogenic obsession. The great thing is that there are sweet and savory options when it comes to fat bombs! I like to melt some cheese in the microwave and eat it. I call it a fat bomb, but it really is just melty cheese!

Ketogenic Chili Recipe

Fall is here and it is time to whip out the crock pot or power pressure cooker and whip up some comfort meals! Chili is a fall favorite. It goes well with football season and can be very nutritious, but can be very high in carbohydrates. This recipe swaps out the high carbohydrate beans for low carbohydrate vegetables while at the same time retaining the wonderful flavor. You’ll love this ketogenic chili recipe! It is easy and simple and makes quite a few servings.

Side note: I am not sure how many servings it makes, probably about 8-10 servings. I fill up my power pressure cooker with vegetables and then enjoy chili meals for about 2-3 days. If you have a family, it will probably be one meal and one meal of leftovers.

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium eggplant
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 large chopped onion
  • 3 scallions chopped
  • 5 mushrooms chopped
  • 1 bell pepper chopped
  • 2 cans of diced tomatoes
  • 1 lb. grassfed ground beef
  • 4 tablespoons chili pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt (I tend to season it more after it is cooked. I’ve made the mistake of over salting before!)

<<Click Here for the Bacon and Butter Cookbook>>

Directions:

Chop the vegetables. In an electric pressure cooker, combine all ingredients. Set it to cook for about 40 minutes. If you are using a slow cooker, set to cook on medium for 2-4 hours. Once it has cooked, allow it to cook for 10 minutes. Serve and enjoy.

Fun low carb toppings for low carbohydrate chili:

  1. grated cheddar cheese
  2. chopped green onions
  3. sour cream and green onions
  4. Avocado slices

Great ketogenic chili side dishes that you can serve:

  1. Tossed salad
  2. Steamed spinach
  3. Steamed broccoli and cauliflower
  4. Sauteed zucchini, mushroom and onions

For more ideas on how to make quick and easy ketogenic meals click here! 

HIIT treadmill Workouts for Weight Loss

Working out on a treadmill can become mundane and boring. You can start to feel like a hamster on a wheel because you aren’t going anywhere. One of the best ways to challenge yourself is to change up your treadmill workouts. Try a high intensity interval workout for your treadmill. These workouts will vary your heart rate and add in arm exercises to challenge more muscles.

Addresses Treadmill Mental Fatigue

While working out at home on my treadmill, I discovered that one way to increase my endurance was to distract myself by watching a youtube video on my treadmill desk. This really helped to combat the boredom of working out on a treadmill. I no longer felt like a hamster on a wheel expending a lot of energy and going nowhere! Because my mind was more stimulated, I found it more enjoyable to workout. However, it had me only working my legs.

Many people are interested in high intensity workouts because they challenge your cardiovascular system and your muscles. You don’t become as bored because you are working different muscles and changing up the pace. Treadmill workouts are geared toward varying the pace, but also incorporating other muscles in the workout while you are on a treadmill.

A HIIT treadmill workout for weight loss is a great idea for someone who is working out at home where one of the main disadvantages to getting fit and healthy is getting bored with routine. The HIIT workout combats this boredom with a variety of moves.

Benefits of High Intensity Interval Training

  • Builds Endurance
  • Burns Calories Faster
  • Effective Energy Use
  • Boosts Metabolism
  • Burns Calories for Hours After Leaving the Gym

An Alternative to High Intensity Interval Training Treadmill Workouts

David Siik provides those who are interested in treadmill workouts for weight loss with a different concept than high intensity interval training on a treadmill. He introduces the concept of the Balanced Interval Training Experience, or BITE method. This method enables youto shed weight and improve your run quicker than ever. Based on David Siik’s methodology and his experience and expertise as an elite runner, fitness instructor, as well as a celebrity trainer, this new running program middle ground finds a unique spot between sprinting and distance training.

David Siik’s BITE method provides you with the most incredible workout you’ve ever had on a treadmill. His detailed regime takes all the guesswork out of how fast to go, at what incline, and for how long, so that you can just focus on your run. In a few short weeks, you’ll find yourself burning fat, losing weight, and boosting your speed just by following these simple principles.

Even if you are a beginner,  The Ultimate Treadmill Workout will help you ramp up your fitness routine, accomplish your goals, and achieve the body you’ve always wanted!

For more information on buying a treadmill desk workstation click here 

How to Reduce High Blood Pressure Naturally

High blood pressure (BP) definition: High BP, hypertension or essential hypertension is a condition where the pressure of the blood against the walls of the arteries is higher than the normal for a healthy person. When the pressure exceeds the normal high levels, it eventually can cause health problems such as heart attack, stroke or other related heart diseases.

As I sold life insurance last summer, one thing that I quickly realized was that almost all seniors are being diagnosed with high blood pressure. Relatively few people answered that they didn’t have high blood pressure. Good blood pressure ensures that our bodies are receiving the key nutrients and oxygen that is needed to keep us disease free and rid the body of toxins. Changing a few aspects of your lifestyle can help you reduce high blood pressure naturally and eliminate the need for a medication.

Increase The Strength of Your Heart

Doctors advise people to get at least 30 minutes of exercise per day, but many of us fall short of even that basic advice. Increasing your cardiovascular health enables each pump of the heart to be more effective and efficient and circulating the blood throughout your body.

Regular physical activity makes your heart stronger. A stronger heart can pump more blood with less effort. If your heart can work less to pump, the force on your arteries decreases, lowering your blood pressure.

Becoming more active can lower your systolic blood pressure — the top number in a blood pressure reading — by an average of 4 to 9 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg). That’s as good as some blood pressure medications. For some people, getting some exercise is enough to reduce the need for blood pressure medication.

Slow Down Your Breathing to Lower High Blood Pressure

When we breath, the oxygen needs time to get to the cells. An optimal breath allows for this. However, many people have formed bad habits. When we get sick, we tend to switch over to mouth breathing because the nose is blocked. This is detrimental to your health. Stress can trigger chronic hyperventilation as well.

I have used the Buteyko Breathing exercises to not only reduce my blood pressure, but also to eliminate symptoms of asthma and epilepsy. Getting the proper amount of oxygen and carbon dioxide into your blood stream can help to reduce high blood pressure.

Hydrate Your Body to Reduce High Blood Pressure

The body becomes stressed when there isn’t enough water for the body’s organs to function properly. This impacts the body’s blood flow. The body must prioritize which organs are essential for keeping you alive and portion out the water

Drinking water is not enough. When we drink water with out consuming salt, the water acts like a diuretic. It pulls water out of our body and causes increased dehydration. When we put dissolve salt on our tongue, the water we drink gets into all of our cells of our body. The water, fully hydrating our body, thus brings down the blood pressure.

In our experience, rarely the salt increases the blood pressure of some people. If you have heart disease, kidney disease, salt intolerance, are pregnant or nursing, do not use the water cures protocol without first seeking the advice from a qualified health care professional. While salt and water are a natural high blood pressure remedy for many, it needs to be used cautiously until it is seen how it works.

Resperate Blood Pressure Lowering Device

Resperate is a heart rate and breathing monitor. It is the only non-drug therapy which has been cleared by the Food and Drug Administration for the reduction of stress and high blood pressure. Reperate is the first over the counter medical device that has been clinically proven to reduce blood pressure naturally.

 

Resperate is a computerized device which provides a guided breathing exercise. Consistently doing these exercises provides more oxygenation and in turn lowers your blood pressure.

Use RESPeRATE for just 15 minutes a every day and it will deliver a significant all-day blood pressure reduction. It is available without a prescription and used by more than 250,000 people worldwide to lower high blood pressure naturally.

High blood pressure is generally caused by your blood vessels tightening up and narrowing. This then causes your heart to pump harder. RESPeRATE’s unique breathing exercise relaxes constricted blood vessels to reduce high blood pressure.

Adjusting Lifestyle Reduces High Blood Pressure Naturally

You may not need that lisinopril, lorsartan or atenolol if you are willing to do these simple things that naturally reduce high blood pressure. You can save yourself hundreds of dollars a year by simply breathing correctly and staying hydrated. A resperate device can keep you on track and focused on your goal of lowering your blood pressure. The consequences of long term high blood pressure can be severe, so you will definitely want to make a plan to incorporate these home remedies into your life. It can be very helpful to schedule in your breathing sessions and document your water consumption. Monitoring your blood pressure regularly can help you to reduce high blood pressure naturally and achieve optimal health.

Healthy Salad Ideas and Keto Salad Dressing

Salads are staples on the ketogenic diet. We tend to like a bit of variety in our diets and it can be easy to get sick of the same old salad especially if you are just using the regular iceberg lettuce and cucumbers. When you are on the ketogenic diet, you want to eliminate the high carbohydrate vegetables and salad toppings. Therefore, you will want to find some substitutes for your favorite croutons.I keep salad ingredients handy in my kitchen and tend to mix and match them up. Here is a list of some of the regulars that appear in my salads:

  • Romaine lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Chopped red onions
  • Deviled Eggs
  • Peppers
  • Frozen peas (small amount, they can be high in carbohydrates)
  • Grated carrot (higher in carbs, so use sparingly)
  • Red onions
  • Avocado

Other healthy salad ideas that you can incorporate if you are doing the ketogenic diet:

  • Sprouts
  • Different lettuces – endive, red leaf, green leaf
  • Kale
  • Broccoli
  • Shredded cabbage
  • Kalamata olives
  • Olives
  • Spring onions
  • Tomatoes, cherry tomatoes
  • Chopped celery
  • Radishes and radish leaves
  • Mushrooms
  • Zucchini

Healthy Protein ideas for your salad:

  • Tuna fish
  • Canned Salmon
  • Slices of leftover pot roast
  • Bacon
  • Boiled Eggs
  • Deviled Eggs
  • Chopped Ham
  • Diced chicken

Ketogenic Salad Topping Substitutes for Croutons:

  • Slivered or sliced almonds
  • Chopped walnuts
  • Hemp hearts
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • Blue Cheese crumbles
  • Shredded cheddar cheese
  • Pine nuts

Keto Salad Dressing Options

For my ketogenic salads, I tend to use a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar and olive oil. Then I sprinkle salt, pepper and parmesan cheese over my salad. It brings out the flavor of the salad ingredients and isn’t high in carbohydrates. There are a lot of salad dressing options that are still relatively low in carbohydrates. Just make sure that you are reading the nutrition label to ensure that you don’t use too much for you daily carbohydrate intake.

Some great options for keto salad dressings include:

  • Blue cheese
  • Ranch
  • Newman’s Italian Dressing
  • Cesar Salad Dressing

Most of the bottled salad dressing options come in about 1 carbohydrate per serving, so it fits well into the ketogenic diet, but you may still want to consider making your own salad dressing to avoid soybean oil or added ingredients that are often added to preserve foods.

How to Make Quick and Easy Keto Meals

Today, I want to share with you some of the tips and tricks I use to get my quick and easy keto meals prepared in under fifteen minutes. The ketogenic diet can be quite challenging when you first start it. What can I eat? Should I attempt that high fat pizza crust and flourless cake? Should I create my own meal plan or follow someone else’s ketogenic meal plan? How in the world am I going to stick to this diet?!

I’ve created some guidelines to creating quick and easy keto meals that you will enjoy. You should also check out the Bacon and Butter free keto cookbook. 

  • You want to become very familiar and comfortable with foods that you are able to freely eat. These are going to be your fats, proteins and leafy greens. Once you master some recipes with these, you are going to start combining them with different side dishes.
  • Get comfortable eating vegetables in salads, stir-fries and steamed. This is the fastest way to prepare the vegetables. It is much easier to make meals with a salad than it is to try and turn your vegetables into something that resembles your favorite gluten based, high carbohydrate food. You’ll also feel disappointed with the results when you compare it to your favorite pizza.
  • Focus on getting a protein, low carb vegetable and some fats in each meal. You don’t have to go overboard on the protein. Just open up a can of wild caught salmon or tuna and scoop out a portion over a salad. 
  • Keep snacks chopped and handy. I enjoy sliced cucumbers, olives, carrots and celery. The snacks are quick, easy, can be prepared ahead of time and kept in the refrigerator for about 3 days. You can dip them in cream cheese dips for extra flavor and fats.
  • Chop up a big tossed salad. It will keep in the refrigerator for about 3 days, but don’t include ingredients that are watery or spoil easily. Keep the tomatoes and the avocados out until you are ready to eat the salad. You can quickly grab a main dish salad for lunch and you can use it as a side salad during dinner. Just add a different protein and a different dressing to keep your taste buds interested.
  • Never fear, frozen broccoli is here! I was hesitant to use frozen foods until I discovered that sometimes they contain more nutrients than fresh food because of the way they are frozen right when they are harvested instead of transported later. To keep my side dishes quick and easy, I often opt for chopped frozen broccoli, add in mushrooms for fun and cook it in olive oil. This cuts out the washing and chopping and makes keto meal prep quick and easy! I also use frozen spinach in my crustless quiche because it is inexpensive.
  • Follow other people’s blogs and dinner ideas. Sometimes half the battle is coming up with your own creative ideas for dinner.
  • Keeping your ketogenic meals quick and easy means that you are going to become adept at using up your left over main dishes the next day in your meals. This is not as bad as it sounds. All you have to do is add a different side dish to it. If the meat is a little dried out, you can reheat it in a pan in some olive oil.
  • Breakfast won’t always be a new dish, but it will often be a different protein paired with a similar side dish, as you can see in the above shot I had broccoli with bacon and here I have broccoli with sausage. Both of them can taste wonderful and they only take 15 minutes to make.
  • Make use of the convenience of a power pressure cooker. This is a serious time saver. It does mean that you are planning ahead for your meals, but I make pot roasts and a ketogenic chili in the power pressure cooker. The prep time is minimal. All you have to do is season the meat, chop the veggies that you want to use and turn the knob. I’ve included a link to the power pressure cooker in case you want to check it out on Amazon. I’ve heard good things about the Instant Pot as well.
  • Don’t sweat it if canned veggies are what you have time for. It is okay to use canned green beans once in awhile. They aren’t a star when it comes to nutrients, but a serving of them still fits into the ketogenic diet. If you want to make them more special, you can top them with sliced almonds or parmesan cheese.
  • Hamburgers without the bun are still tasty when you add sauteed mushrooms and onions on top. You just have to get used to cutting your hamburger instead of holding it. As you can see, I used a couple other tricks to make this a quick and easy keto meal, I added a side salad and some green beans. Keep dinner simple and your ketogenic meals will become quick and easy to make.
  • Smoothies are a great option when you are in a rush. If you use kefir (fermented milk or coconut milk), you can cut the carbohydrate count down on your smoothies and get a probiotic boost. You will want to focus on berry smoothies or a chocolate or vanilla variety. Incorporating high fructose fruits like pineapple or mango will take you out of ketosis. Berries and chocolate can be flavored with a zero carbohydrate flavoring like stevia or swerve. Smoothies only take a few minutes if you have the ingredients handy.
  • Take advantage of kitchen tools that make creating meals quick! I love my magic bullet for creating whip cream to top off my berry desserts and my steamer to quickly turn boring broccoli or asparagus into a cooked side dish ready to be topped off with parmesan cheese, grassfed butter, hemp hearts, crushed almonds or something fun like that. 
  • Make sure you have your kitchen stocked with your favorite ketogenic ingredients. One of the worst time killers is looking around for ingredients that you want to use to make into meals.
  • Don’t worry about pairing unusual ingredients together. Your goal is to make the meal quick and easy. To the right, I have wild caught salmon, my frozen
    broccoli side dish, some celery and almonds. This was a breakfast meal. While the combination was kind of weird, it was quick and easy to put together. Some of my favorites.
  • Desserts on the ketogenic diet are going to be more rare and they are going to be simple. Gelatin is very low carbohydrate and I love to make a coconut milk based version of a gelatin dessert. Berries topped with whip cream is another great easy dessert for the ketogenic dieters. 

Keto Chicken Broccoli Casserole Recipe

Casseroles are a comfort food. However, many of them are made with high carbohydrate ingredients and can spike your insulin and increase inflammation. It is always nice to find a recipe or dish that you can modify to taste fantastic. Chicken broccoli casserole was one of my favorites growing up. The croutons on top took it out of the gluten free and ketogenic category, so I left them out. This keto chicken broccoli casserole version is still simply delicious, even without the croutons. I have been seeing that people are using pork rinds to add a crispy crusty layer to the top. I’m going to try that next!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cans cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 cup of mayonaise
  • 1 large head of broccoli chopped
  • 1 pound of cooked chicken
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:

Dice the cooked chicken. Chop the broccoli. Place a layer of broccoli in a 9×13 inch pan. Layer the cooked, diced chicken on top. Add the diced onion. Put the mayonnaise and cream of mushroom soup in and stir it around. Mix well with the goal to coat the broccoli and chicken. Sprinkle shredded cheddar cheese on top. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes covered with tin foil. Remove the tin foil and let cook for another 10 minutes to allow the cheese to get crisp. Remove from oven and let cool for ten minutes before serving. Enjoy!

For convenience, I used Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup. This does have some extra carbohydrates in it. A serving of the canned soup is 9 carbohydrates, which is a lot, but you are mixing it in with lower carbohydrate vegetables, chicken and mayonnaise, which helps to lower the carb count per serving. Just make sure that you aren’t eating mega-size portions and you should be able to enjoy it in your ketogenic diet meal plan.

You can make substitutions for the Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup. There are recipes that use sour cream or heavy cream. This is my mom’s recipe. I may tweak it a little more to make it even more low carbohydrate, but for now, I love it! Here’s a picture of the final keto chicken broccoli casserole.

You don’t have to use the same brands that I use, but I’m including links to Amazon of the products that I use in case you want to check out reviews or order them.

 

Lemon Panna Cotta Dessert Recipe

Lemon Panna Cotta is a very easy keto dessert to make. It does not require a lot of time or skill and it can be very impressive. Panna cotta is a cream based gelatin dessert, so if you can make jello, you can make panna cotta! It will impress your friends a lot more and the creaminess will taste a lot better than the artificially flavored jello gelatin.

With only four ingredients and a preparation time of about 10 minutes, lemon panna cotta is a quick keto dessert. It is my go-to keto dessert or snack! Easy to make and very low in carbohydrates.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons gelatin
  • 2 tablespoons Swerve (or zero carbohydrate sweetener to taste)
  • Juice of 1 whole lemon

Directions:

In a saucepan, pour in the coconut milk. Turn on to medium heat. As the coconut milk is heating up, add the gelatin and stir with a whisk. Squeeze the lemon juice into the saucepan. Add the 2 tablespoons of zero carbohydrate sweetener. Whisk and bring to a boil. Once boiling, take off heat and divide into 5 dessert dishes. Refrigerate for two hours. Garnish with strawberries or blueberries to keep it keto. Enjoy!