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I Ditched Phentermine For The Keto Diet and lost 50 pounds

My Keto Journey! A Primer. A guest post by Emily Stevens

My name is Emily Stevens, and I want to share my personal journey towards a healthier and more sustainable lifestyle. For years, I struggled with my weight and tried countless diets in search of a
solution. However, it wasn't until I made a conscious decision to break free from reliance on weight-loss drugs that I discovered the transformative power of the keto diet.

Growing up in San Diego, California, I always felt self-conscious about my weight. Unlike some fortunate individuals who could indulge without consequence, I found it challenging to maintain a healthy weight. As a result, I experimented with various diets, hoping to find the magic formula that would help me shed those extra pounds. From the cabbage soup diet to Weight Watchers, I left no stone unturned in my quest for a solution. My doctor even prescribed phentermine, a weight-loss drug that suppresses appetite, in an attempt to assist me on my weight-loss journey. (Some of my friends even went to Mexico to get a cheaper version of Phentermine, here is more on Acxion).

At first, the medication seemed like a blessing. I experienced initial weight loss, which provided a glimmer of hope. However, the effects were short-lived, and I always found myself reverting to old habits and regaining the weight I had lost, and then some.

The realization hit me hard when I visited my doctor for a prescription refill. To my disappointment, I had not made significant progress, and my doctor informed me that I would need to lose a considerable amount of weight before receiving another prescription.

Moreover, I learned that the drug was only a temporary solution and not a sustainable option due to its potential side effects.

Feeling disheartened yet determined, I decided to explore other alternatives. That's when my doctor suggested the ketogenic diet, and I thought, "Why not give it a try?"

On August 12, 2021, I embarked on my keto journey, and it completely transformed my perspective on weight loss. At 29 years old, I discovered that I could still indulge in delicious food while simultaneously shedding pounds.

To my delight, some of my colleagues at CVS, where I work, were also following the keto diet. This
shared experience created a supportive environment where we could exchange ideas, recipes, and snacks. It was during this time that I realized I could still enjoy cheese—a personal favorite—while adhering to the keto principles.

The energy and mental clarity I experienced on this diet made it all the more effortless to maintain.

To ensure I stayed on track, I began tracking my macronutrients using the Carb Manager app. While initially tedious, this practice yielded fantastic results. Additionally, I discovered that I could still enjoy foods like bread, tortillas, pasta, and rice by opting for their keto versions.

The flexibility of the diet allowed me to modify my favorite dishes while staying committed to my weight-loss goals.

Hydration played a vital role in my journey, so I made it a priority to consume a gallon of water each day. I invested in a 64-ounce Hydro Flask and made it a habit to drink at least two, sometimes three, of these bottles daily.

Here is a peek at a typical day of eating for me:


Breakfast: I start my day with a cup of coffee blended with 2 tablespoons of heavy cream, sweetener, and collagen powder. On some days I used supplements for extra energy. Here is list of some energy boosting natural alternatives that work similar to phentermine. Lately, there has been so much buzz about natural AMPK activators and sugar metabolizers for weight loss as well, like Berberine. (Source: Linkedin)

Glucomannan is also an excellent appetite suppressant that can help manage the cravings while following a diet. These kind of supplements are also worth looking into.

Lunch: I enjoy a satisfying meal of roasted chicken accompanied by asparagus.

Snacks: To curb hunger between meals, I reach for a meat stick and string cheese.

Dinner: Salmon with garlic lemon butter and loaded broccoli make for a delicious and fulfilling evening meal.

Dessert: When I need a sweet treat, I opt for sugar-free chocolate or indulge in a delectable mug cake.

I incorporated exercise into my routine one year into my journey, although the majority of my weight loss was achieved through dietary changes alone, along with some support from appetite suppressants like
caffeine and supplements.

I aim to work out at least three times a week, alternating between gym sessions and outdoor walks. During my gym visits, I typically engage in 30 to 45 minutes of cardio exercises, followed by 45 to 60 minutes of weight training. On days when I don't go to the gym, I make an effort to walk for approximately two miles.

Over the course of my keto journey, I have successfully shed 70 pounds, and I have consistently maintained this routine for a year and a half.

While my body has undergone significant transformation, I acknowledge that self-love is an ongoing process, as I tend to be my own harshest critic. The realization that I could achieve such remarkable weight loss through dietary modifications alone was something I never anticipated.

This experience has taught me the importance of selecting a weight-loss approach that aligns with my lifestyle and can be sustained in the long run. It's crucial to choose a method that brings about lasting changes in eating habits, is scientifically proven rather than relying on quick fixes.

What to Include in Your Keto Diet

Wondering what foods to incorporate into your keto diet, beyond butter? The foundation of a keto-friendly pantry consists of whole, unprocessed ingredients that will keep you on track. Let's explore some essential items:

Meat: Opt for red meat varieties such as beef, sausage. Avoid bacon.

Poultry: Include chicken and turkey as excellent protein sources.

Fatty Fish: Incorporate fish like tuna, salmon, trout, and mackerel, which are rich in beneficial omega-3 fatty acids.

Eggs: Choose pastured or omega-3 eggs for a nutritious and versatile option.

Dairy: Include cream and butter, preferably from grass-fed sources, as well as unprocessed cheese such as goat, cream, cheddar, blue, and mozzarella.

Seeds and Nuts: Think almonds, flaxseeds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, and chia seeds, which provide healthy fats and added texture to your meals.

Healthy Oils: Utilize extra-virgin olive oil, avocado oil, and coconut oil to add flavor and healthy fats to your cooking.

Avocados: These creamy delights are an excellent source of healthy fats and essential nutrients.

Dairy Products: Opt for plain Greek yogurt and cottage cheese as high-protein options that can be enjoyed in moderation.

Non-Starchy Vegetables: Incorporate a variety of leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, onions, tomatoes, and other non-starchy vegetables for fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

Seasonings: Enhance the flavor of your meals with salt, pepper, herbs, and spices that suit your taste preferences.

Beverages: Enjoy unsweetened coffee and tea, adding plenty of heavy cream for a creamy and satisfying drink.

By including these foods in your keto diet, you'll have a well-rounded and nourishing meal plan that supports your health and weight-loss goals.

Foods to Avoid or Limit on the Keto Diet

While it's relatively straightforward to eliminate grains, legumes, and starchy vegetables, it's essential to be mindful of seemingly innocent foods that can unintentionally increase your carbohydrate intake, such
as berries. Here are some items to eliminate or reduce from your diet:

Sugary Foods: Stay away from soft drinks, fruit juice, smoothies, and candies that are high in added sugars.

Wheat-Based Foods: Cut out bread, rice, pasta, cereal, and other wheat-based products that are carb-heavy.

Fruit: With the exception of small portions of berries, it's best to avoid other fruits due to their natural sugar content.

Beans and Legumes: This includes chickpeas, as they can contribute to higher carbohydrate intake.

High-Starch Vegetables: Minimize or eliminate potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, and parsnips, as they contain higher levels of carbs.

Processed Low-Fat and Sugar-Free Products: These highly processed items are often disguised as healthy options but can be packed with hidden carbs.

Condiments and Sauces: Be cautious of certain condiments and sauces that may contain added sugars or unhealthy oils.

Unhealthy Fats: Stay away from processed vegetable oils that are typically high in unhealthy fats.

Alcohol: Limit or avoid alcoholic beverages, as they can hinder ketosis and contribute to carb consumption.

By being mindful of these foods and making informed choices, you can maintain a low-carb, ketogenic lifestyle more effectively. Remember to read labels, choose whole, unprocessed alternatives, and focus on
nourishing your body with keto-friendly options.

Dealing with the Realities of the Keto Flu

Let's face it: the keto flu is a legitimate and appropriately named phenomenon. During the initial stages of adapting to the ketogenic diet, you may encounter side effects such as nausea, headaches, weakness,
fatigue, muscle cramps, and digestive issues like constipation or diarrhea.

The good news is that these symptoms typically subside within a few days. One way to minimize flu-like discomfort is by easing into the diet with a regular low-carb approach for the first few weeks.

This allows your body to gradually adjust and increase its fat-burning capabilities before fully eliminating carbohydrates.

It's crucial to prioritize hydration at all times, but especially when starting a keto diet. During the transition, your body tends to shed stored water as it breaks down glycogen, the carbohydrate storage units in your muscles and liver.

With the loss of water, it becomes essential to replenish electrolytes. Rather than reaching for a banana or Gatorade, opt for potassium- and magnesium-rich foods like salmon, avocado, or nuts.

If fatigue or low-energy is an isssue, I already mentioned that certain thermogenic boosters (natural that work bit like phentermine but without side effects) can help.

Another temporary side effect you may encounter is known as keto breath. Fortunately, this typically diminishes as your body adapts to the lower carbohydrate intake.

In the meantime, ensure you drink plenty of water, consider adjusting your carb or protein intake, and try chewing on sugar-free mints or gum (while being mindful of their carbohydrate content). These strategies
can provide some relief during this adjustment period.

Bottomline on My Keto Success Story: How I Transformed my Body and Health

Like many others, I was intrigued by how the keto diet works and its potential benefits. So, I decided to give it a try, and as you can see I'm exhilarated with the results I've achieved.

The basic principle of the keto diet is fascinating. Instead of relying on sugar derived from carbohydrates,
the diet aims to shift the body's primary fuel source to ketone bodies, which are produced by the liver from stored fat. This metabolic state, known as ketosis, encourages the body to burn fat for energy, leading to weight loss and potential health improvements.

Numerous studies have confirmed the effectiveness of the keto diet for weight loss and overall well-being. In fact, it has been shown to be more effective than low-fat diets in several research studies. It's worth noting that the keto diet isn't a new concept; it shares similarities with low-carb diets like the Atkins diet.

One of the best aspects of the keto diet, in my experience, is the freedom from calorie counting and constant food tracking.

Unlike many other diets, the focus is primarily on macronutrient composition, particularly emphasizing protein. This protein-rich approach not only aids in weight loss but also helps to curb hunger and prevent those notorious hangry feelings.

Personally, I have witnessed a remarkable transformation in both my body and overall health since
adopting the keto lifestyle. The pounds have melted away, and I feel more energized and focused throughout the day. The absence of constant hunger pangs and cravings has been a game-changer for me.

If you're considering the keto diet, I encourage you to give it a try. Consult with a healthcare professional or nutritionist to ensure it aligns with your individual needs and goals. Remember, the keto diet isn't just about weight loss; it can potentially improve your overall health and well-being.

Embark on this exciting journey with an open mind, and who knows, you may be pleasantly surprised by the incredible benefits the keto diet has to offer!

About Emily

I'm Emily Stevens, a passionate Keto Diet enthusiast and a firm believer in the power of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. From a young age, I've been fascinated by the marvels of science, leading me to delve
into biotechnology and biomedicine. Thanks to Diana Ruggiero for covering my story!