by Coach Kimmi Katte
Okay, let's bring in some science about keto and stress.
Cortisol is a stress hormone that is produced when the body perceives a stressful situation. It doesn't matter if that stress is a physical threat (somebody chasing you with a sharp knife) or a perceived threat (you’ve left your Christmas shopping to the last minute and cannot find a parking spot).
Cortisol is an important hormone and we cannot live without it.
However, sometimes it is produced in excess for a variety of reasons.
When it is produced in excess, it triggers a cascade of events.
Instead of the body using protein for repair and growth, in a state of excessive cortisol the body converts dietary protein to carbohydrate, which then provides an insulin response (we're trying to avoid too many of these on a ketogenic diet).
The insulin response stops the body from being able to access its own body fat for energy. This can all happen without much of a change in your blood glucose and is how so many people can be getting great blood glucose and ketone readings on a ketogenic diet but not get any traction with losing body fat.
Now most of you probably have the yawns about now and would like me to hurry up and get to the dang coaching tip! And here it is - change your response to stress. The way to do that is to improve the condition of the nervous system by employing stress reduction strategies.
I fully realise I just lost half of you who are thinking, ugh, I take time for myself, I pray, I get a regular massage, etcetera. When I say that we need to employ stress reduction techniques I’m not referring to ANY of those things. I’m referring to a scientifically researched strategy called Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction. It’s a form of meditation that is just one of the many powerful tools we can use to reduce our cortisol production. There's nothing woo-woo or religious about it. It's very much about learning how to spend some time in the present moment without judgment and without resentment.
There are a LOAD of great resources to help you get the gist of mindfulness (and i'll pop a link to one of them below - no affiliation at all, it's just good). But one important thing i want to point out is that this strategy will only cost you 10 minutes a day.
We can all manage that no matter how busy we are.