When my then boyfriend, now husband and I first moved in together, I felt determined to impress him with my domestic goddess-like kitchen skills.
Way before I had even heard of Keto, I thought surely we could eat healthy meals and still enjoy them!
He works in commercial construction and is on his feet from 6:30am – 5:30pm, 6 days a week.
I am mostly sedentary working in an office job unless I force myself to do scheduled exercise a few times a week.
I calculated I should be eating around 1400 – 1600 calories a day, and assumed he should be around 2000 calories a day.
We started off well, with healthy salads and light dishes, but I quickly realised that something wasn’t working.
Immediately after dinner he’d be hunting a snack, and by a snack, I mean essentially a second dinner.
I made his dinner serves bigger and bigger until it got to the point where I was using two plates – one for meat and veg, and then another plate with a side dish of pasta or hot potato chips.
It still wasn’t enough.
For lunches I would be making him 3 – 4 sandwiches and he’d still buy a chocolate bar in the afternoon and cook pancakes after dinner.
It seemed like an unwinnable battle and I didn’t want to deprive him.
The oft-frequented second dinner of pancakes
This went on for 2 years, during which both my husband and I both stacked on the weight (because if he gets a chocolate bar, so do I right?).
We both hit our heaviest weights and I knew something had to change.
Finally, I started to look into the nutrition of what we were eating, rather than just piling more food onto his plate, and quickly realised we were eating nutritionally devoid foods.
This was the first real shift in my way of thinking – you only have three meals a day, so three opportunities to give you body the fuel it needs and deserves.
Does that pasta deserve to be on my plate? What is it offering me?
Yes I will be full, but for how long? Are there any vitamins, minerals, nutrients, good fats in it?
What about that rice and that mashed potato?
I realised that we had to cut out these plate fillers and substitute with nutritious food. Obviously quantity was the next question.
Turns out the calories I had calculated for myself was correct, but I was way off for hubby to be.
Because of how active he is at work, combined with being a man he should be eating 3000 – 3500 calories a day!
Wowza!! I felt overwhelmed by how many chips I would be cooking to give him that much food… then it dawned on me – FAT IS THE ANSWER.
Good fats come at us!
He now has what looks like a normal size dinner, but the secret is in the fats.
We load our salads with feta, seeds and olive oil and cook our steak in butter. We have yoghurt, full fat of course, over a dense chocolate torte with no sugar.
His lunch is now an egg and bacon omelette made with cream and cheese.
Snacks are salami, cream cheese dip and a few carrots. And he is full! It’s a miracle!!
We quickly lost the weight we had put on by removing the plate fillers like rice, potato, pasta and cous cous.
Here’s a list of high-carb plate fillers that are killers; https://www.healthaliciousness.com/articles/foods-highest-in-carbohydrates.php