Paleo or ketogenic eaters, please help me!

I know perfectly well that I should be eating a low carb, high fat diet. But I just don't seem to be able to get my head around eating this way. As a result I cut out the grains and carbs, and up my veg (and fruit, which I know isn't ideal) but I still remain hungry.

How do you up your fat consumption to compensate for the carbs?

28 Replies

  • That's exactly what I would like to know! I read somewhere to take a spoonful of peanut butter from time to time, but I think I'd be sick! Peanut butter really needs to be on bread. I suppose you can put lots of olive oil on your avocado salade with pine nuts...

  • Yeah, I ate and ate and ate and never stopped feeling hungry. I can do a modified version - no starchy food - but if I cut carbs below a certain level I can't cope.

  • You need some carbs, cut the cake ,scones etc reduce bread and spuds.

    My problem is cutting the home made bread lathered with butter and a chunk of cheese.

  • when you are ill enough, you do it and its not hard at all.

  • We, no. It's a fallacy that you need carbs. There is no such thing as essential carbohydrates in the same way as proteins and fats. And carbs make you fat (OK fatter).

    And I know I feel better when I cut them out. I just can't stick to it long term if I feel hungry all the time.

  • Have you tried a sort of modified Weight Watchers, where you eat more or less everything except straight carbs (starchy/sugary foods)? My partner and I have been doing this for a month or two and have lost a fair bit of weight and I've been able to stop the food diary, which was a pain.

    So you can have meat and as much veg as you like (anything green and/or non-starchy, so no peas, potatoes or sweetcorn but pretty much everything else) and if you're still hungry you can eat more veg. For a snack you can put peanut butter or soft cheese on an apple, eat a bit of cheese or hummus, a boiled egg or greek yogurt with fruit and a little honey or jam. I make a lot of veg soup w lentils, which are high in protein and fibre. You get enough carb from the veg and fruit so you don't go through the whole ketosis/feeling ill part (which I understand is the whole point of it for some people).

    If I have enough veg in me I'm not hungry. Happy to snack on a punnet of cherry tomatoes or carrot sticks w dressing.

    Anything like that work for you?

  • What about...

    Full fat cream cheese? Or are you avoiding dairy too?

    Also full fat yoghurt? Same comment as above.

    Oily fish?


    Some links - they are a bit repetitive :

    A surprising link, not really answering the question :

  • dairy is a huge NO, with hashimotos disease and inflammation.

  • I drink a bulletproof coffee in the morning (mainly to help me poo if im lucky!) so you could make a tea or hot drink with : a tbs of ghee, a tbs of coconut oil, a tbs of grassfed butter (I usuallly add 2tbs of fats total, but noticed if I add MORE then it is more satiating go figure.

    When you have veg or salad dont hold back on the olive oil (assuming it is cold pressed virgin eg not processed and rancid).

    Cook with coconut oil.

    I add avacado to smoothies and make an avo choc mousse (you could also add more ghee or butter to this if you need more fats).

    Dont forget as long as no intolerance, to have nuts and seeds (preferably raw). Ground linseed in smoothies. Nuts as snacks and seeds/nuts with your salads perhaps.

    Oily fish and meat with the fat on it (try to source organic meat or youll get a heaps of nasties and nitrates in it). For fish aim for wild caught. Eat the bones of fish for calcium. make bone briths if youre into cooking.

    Also dont get too caught up in all the rules. Personally, I have found that if I eat high fat and have all the carbs too then I will gain weight (but its yummY!). Snacking on sticks of butter and avo and cheese is a new world and I certainly enjoyed making every single mistake as I feasted this way lol.

    I have also found that sometimes I just want carbs - whether its gluten free toast or sweet potatoes or mash. Be wary of getting very caught up in the rules and aim for flavour! I write these two articles that may or may not be helpful for you:

  • I have been doing Paleo restart a branch of Paleo leap. It was a one off price (can't remember how much it was last year)and you can do a 30 day version as often as you want. It came with a substantive recipe book and autoimmune versions. I am never hungry and the recipes are tasty. Examples (most of which are mentioned above) are cooking with coconut oil, almond butter in smoothies for breakfast or with cut up veg for afternoon snack, advocado, oily fish. Many of the recipes have been delicious.

  • Hi) been pretty much paleo for a couple of years now. Pretty much is because some junk food, like occasional nachos or a candy of some sort, still finds its way to my table))

    Being satisfied is about protein, not fat, for me at least. Eggs are a good source of both protein and fat, they often keep me going in the mornings. Eggs and bacon first thing upon waking up is actually what helped me push through a few months of working nights.

    A homemade version of Bulletproof coffee is yummy, although I try to keep my caffeine intake as low as possible due to some adrenal issues.

    Avocadoes are great - in salads, guacamoles and just with some salt) Carb intake should not go below 50 g though for us, since it would slow down already slow thyroid. Resistant carbs is somesing I'm giving a try at the moment to up my carb intake without getting too much insulin response. Just a few thoughts on the subject, hope this helps)

  • Dr. Mark Hyman says..

    Traditional thinking suggests carbohydrates are bad for you. I have something surprising to say that might go against everything you’ve heard: Carbs are the single most important thing you can eat for health and weight loss. In fact, I often say my plan is a high-carb diet.

    But wait, you say, don’t carbs contribute to insulin resistance, heart disease, and other health concerns?

    Some do, but the truth is more complicated. You see, “carbohydrates” encompasses a huge category. A hot fudge sundae and cauliflower both fall into the “carbs” category, yet they are entirely different foods.

    In fact, almost all plant foods fall into the carbs category. These are what I refer to as slow carbs, which are low-glycemic and don’t spike your blood sugar or insulin. These slow carbs come loaded with nutrients, fiber, and amazing molecules called phytochemicals.

    When you eat a cornucopia of fresh fruits and vegetables teeming with phytonutrients — carotenoids, flavonoids, and polyphenols – they help improve nearly all health problems, including dementia, diabesity, and aging.

    i eat oily fish. mct oil on my salads, lots of low starch vegetables and low sugar gluten or dairy, just added back some nuts after 60 days without. I have hashimotos and i am trying to put it into remission. Having chunky organic peanut butter , with zero sugar all fruit spread, on a spoon, was heaven and i actually cried. No bread needed. When you go on a very restrictive diet for months or years, you really appreciate when you add it back. I will not go back to grains or dairy..maybe never after what i have read about its effect on hashi's patients and the immune system and inflammation..2 of the worst things you can eat if autoimmune.

  • Having chunky organic peanut butter , with zero sugar all fruit spread, on a spoon, was heaven and i actually cried. LOVE THIS!!!!

  • thanks! After eating it daily, i don't cry anymore. See how you just quickly take things for granted?!! Now..i am eating too much sugar..even fruit sugar is not good, when you have insulin issues, like me.

  • Yikes andthere I'd no end to the refinement we couldmake to ourselves. Sounds like you are doing very well. I have blood sugar issues also but have been enjoying dried fruit for the first time in years. Think my body doesn't mind if I really really enjoy! Any chance your body needs the fruit sugar and you can enjoy it? I'm. Learning that if there's gonna be any tension around the food then don't have it not worth it or have it latee when more hungry. Hard lessons to learn this far into life! !! Lol take care

  • i still feel very bad..brain fog, swelling and pain, insomnia, headaches..terrible fatigue etc.. but hope that by addressing my missing cortisol and other hormones, i will be able to have a life, someday.

  • Goodness! ! What a journey 😯 yes if there are some other imbalances then you would hope to feel better by adressing them. You will get there. I purify my water, gf, df, now having another go at grain free. I LOVE peanut butter and other nuts but unfortunately my digestion gets a lot worse when I have them. And linseed. Pumpkin seed I seem to get away with. Possibility you have an autoimmunity or other gut issue to peanuts or something else? If I eat a fo9d I'm. Intolerant to then I've learnt to recognise the following : post nasal drip, tight shoulders and neck, crushing headache, bloating, fatigue, weakness, sore throat, swollen glands, pain and ache across top of shoulders, rash on face. ..probably more I cannot recall them all! ! At one time ANYTHING I ate would get a reaction. I thought it was all sibo, but now I see the relationship to hypo, possibly hashimitos. ..waiting for ultrasound. When I didn't understand my fatigue I called myself lazy and many other nasty things mentally, and then comfort eat by overeating rather than unhealthy foods. Too much health stuff lol. Plus I was looking for energy In food. It's taken a long time to accept that I am currently intolerant to lots of healthyfoods! !! Proof is in the experience. Sounds like you are on a similar journey in terms of yukky food rules???

  • yes..i have autoimmune disease, hashimotos and have been trying to reverse it with diet. I just recently added peanut butter, but it can contain fungus and is not really a good option in nuts, it may not even be a true nut. I like them so much better than healthier almond, though. Been the same since 2010. No, not a peanut allergy or illness from peanuts.

    They say the autoimmunity begins with and also causes leaky gut, so it's all about gut healing. I did have all kinds of food testing, stool testing etc..and i have very little good bacteria, no bad,, no yeast. Only a few things showed up on food sensitivities, but i have been off all dairy, except ghee, 2 months ago..all dairy for 2 years, no gluten for 6 months or any other grains for 3, no seeds or nuts until recent peanut and almond, for 3 months, no nightshades for 3 months..

  • Wow you have done elimination diet really well! ! I caved after 3 days grain free and df as I got my period and wanted gluten free pizza!!! You have dobe superb work on all those eliminations! !! I wonder why you still feel bad after all that. You seem like the kind of person who will already be monitoring their thyroid panel with optimal ranges aND filtering water and parasite cleanses etc etc etc so I'll save my breath there. Sending healing vibes your way . Um yum peanut butter small blessings! !!

  • I might be able to help. I am vegan as well as soya and gluten free and find it easier to cut out grains completely than mess about with alternatives. If I eat a few grains, eg rice or gluten free pasta, I feel hungry, when I cut them all out I feel fine.

    I eat nuts and seeds in rice milk for breakfast, either salad with olive oil and cider vinegar for lunch or fruit salad, casserole made of mainly root veg in the evening and in between if needed I snack on fruit. I make the casserole with coconut oil and that provides a good amount of fat.

    Six months ago I didn't think I could do this but I just thought I'd try one week and see how I felt, then thought I might as well try a second week as one wasn't long enough, then at the end of two weeks I decided it would be much more meaningful if I did one month and at the end of a month read that you need six months so decided just to keep going as long as I could, even if only a few days. Suddenly I realised I had been sticking to it for 5 months and now I enjoy this way of eating.

    You, of course, will have more variety if you eat meat and fish.

    Best of luck and I hope this helps you.

  • If u eat meat eat fatty cuts, u put coconut fat in anything you can and as someone else said a high fat coffee. Also fat balls. I found the keto diet app really helpful for both counting carbs fat etc and recipes and ideas for what to eat. Was never hungry, and still don't eat lunch. I'm now wahls paleo rather than paleo plus.

  • Thank you all. Its encouraging to see that lots of you are doing it.

    Coconut in any form is a no-no. And I can't imagine putting fat in my coffee - after 50 years of drinking it black. Most of the rest I am already doing - but clearly need to change my attitude and just get cooking. And probably accept that I am hungry or at least craving carbs for a while.

    I don't have Hashimoto's, have no problem with milk other than disliking liquid milk. I suspect I do have some sort of fungal issue, and am sure my gut flora is all wrong.

  • In that case if you have enough reason to think your gut is compromised, then try having bone broths on an empty stomach. And did you know that a week or probiotics might help? I say a week as it is very possible to take too much probiotics, especially if you didnt need them in the first place. Also sauerkraut a tsp-tbs a day might be helpful for gut, depeding on your tolerance.

    For me, the thought of adding fats to coffee was plain weird but then I tried it. You cannot imagine how good a black tea or coffee BLENDED (you cannot just stir it in doesnt work) with ghee or butter or both is!!! I have back sometimes still but only if my stomach is full already.

    If your blood sugars are unsteady yes you will get cravings. It takes at least two weeks to settle into it and then HEY PRESTO you stop getting hungry! weird.

    If you are symptomatic now then you dont feel like cooking. Or if youve been symtomatic in the past, and tired, you just get out of the habit. its easy. Steamed veg drowned in butter. Yum. That takes about 10 minutes, if that. Add pumpkin seeds for crunch, dried herbs de provence, a boiled egg or some chicken and its a whole meal. I also add tomato puree to lots of meals, and avo.

    Are you allergic to coconut or dont like the taste? Im allergic to coconut water but seem to be able to have as much oil as I like! I had to give up the butter and ghee recently though. Bummer. Take care.

  • I found after 8 years on a limited FODMAP that changing to Autoimmune paleo (from Sarah Ballentyne) was rather straightforward. Probably helps that my diet was super limited to start with! And am now reintroducing so hope to be able to eat coco again as that is the thing that I really miss. Nut milk coco with hemp oil and coconut oil got me trough a bad stage last year and really helped with my headaches (way less faff that smoothies).

    Once you start to listen to what your body craves you will eat the new regime without difficulty: everything at present must have onion and garlic as I haven't had it for 8 years and obviously something in me really wants it. I am even considering secondary fermentation of my kefir with garlic to make a dressing/dip. After a while you just have to follow your gut not what your head tells you it wants. Have a go and good luck.

  • My body - or at least the brain that manages it - craves sugar! I know Ray Peat would say that was fine, but I don't think I agree.

    I don't think AIP is necessary or doable. I do not have any AI illness, and I do not do coconut. Not actually allergic, but it makes me heave!

    I clearly should consider cutting out nightshades. Not until I have used up the tomatoes and red peppers in my fridge though!

    Today is day 2. I am hungry, and I have a splitting headache!

  • Well, a week in and I may have lost a little weight. It's too early to be sure it's not just day to day variation. The headache comes and goes, but is generally subsiding. I am eating a fair bit of fruit, and a little dried fruit, but overall that is going down. Every day it becomes mentally easier. I know perfectly well that even a little sugar will send me down the slippery slope, and as each day passes I am less and less willing to throw away my hard work so far.

    I have been off probiotics but will give them another go. And have started making yogurt again, although I find it hard without honey or maple syrup! I must go to the polish shop to see if they do fresh sauerkraut, which I love and could eat daily. The only one I have found in Lidl was full of artificial sweetener.

    I really like the idea of short term goals. I have managed a week, so now I can do a month! And in fact I have kind of promised myself I will stick it out till we go on holiday in late September. I have no idea what I will eat while away, since my choice will be to eat what is provided, or not eat anything, and my main focus will be gluten avoidance.

  • An interesting read!

    I'm currently following some Tom Brimeyer/Ray Peat guidelines, and eat fresh fruit whenever I want to. This takes me back nearly 30 years to when the "Fit For Life" re-spin of "Natural Hygiene" saw me almost fruitarian, at least in having no guilt about eating lots of fruit. Now, I make a bowl of jelly with orange juice each day, having bought a 1kg pack of proper gelatine. The combination of amino acids in gelatine is considered anti-inflammatory.

    One tip is to sliver carrot lengthwise, which offers maximum absorption of oestrogens in the gut. I decided to go a step further and make the carrot probiotic, using a Pikure pickle press found for about £18 on The Big South American River Bookshop & Emporium's website, sent from Japan and arriving in less than a fortnight. I use half a pint or a pint of brine to 500g or so of veggies, the brine having two or three tsp of salt to a pint of water. The pickle is ready in a few days. I've had fresh stuff sold from a barrel in Poland, but the stuff in jars is usually heat-treated. I don't usually make the highly-flavoured Asian pickles, as I can enjoy the plain style in larger quantities.

  • I really cannot buy Ray Peat, even though his intellectuality is right up my street! But I find he often latches on to small studies that aren't supported by much other research. Long experience has taught me that much research is badly designed, and I tend to rely for my theories on what evolution can tell us. So for example, even though his theory that refined sugar is OK, it's not been a part of the human diet for very long, and I therefore view it with suspicion.

    And it's plain irresponsible to encourage people with apparently healthy and untested thyroids to pop T3!

    Scales still looking encouraging.........

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