Trying out the ketogenic diet calls for determination. Thanks to carb counting and food restrictions, you’ll be spending a lot of time on meal prep. In the beginning, you get the “keto flu” symptoms of headaches, fatigue and dizziness as your body adjusts to the high-fat, extremely low-carb diet and starts burning fat for energy, rather than carbs. The keto diet can get very boring, very fast. There is no maintenance plan on keto, just the same old 75 percent of daily calories from fat, 20 percent from protein, and 5 percent from carbohydrates.
When you reach your goal weight, you won’t be adding back those banished fruits, legumes, root veggies, squash and sweet potatoes. Deprivation and bored taste buds could induce you to binge out on the exact same foods you’ve been avoiding.
Nutritionists say there’s no harm in a low-carb diet for a short duration if you consult your doctor first. The experts don’t, however, recommend it for a long period of time. Stay on the keto plan continuously and you’ll be eating too much fat and losing too much nutrition.
While you’re chewing on that info, cook up one of the 36 keto recipes that Epicurious says actually are delicious. I guarantee this chicken breast stuffed with ham and cheese works well on keto as well as the Atkins and Dukan diets.
FYI, oven temps and chicken size can range; some chickens cook at 25 to 30 minutes instead of the recipe’s stated 12 to 15 minutes, so keep an eye on timing. Roast broccoli in balsamic and olive oil at the same time, and you’ll have an easy, tasty dinner.
3-Ingredient Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Ham and Cheese
Yield: 4 servings. Active Time: 10 minutes. Total Time: 25 minutes
- 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 2 pounds)
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 4 ounces thinly sliced Black Forest ham
- 4 ounces thinly sliced Gruyère cheese
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Using a sharp knife, make an incision on thinner long side of chicken breast, cutting parallel through the breast but not all the way through. Season inside of chicken with pepper and stuff each with 1 oz. ham and 1 oz. cheese.
- Transfer chicken to a rimmed baking sheet and rub all over with oil; season lightly with salt and pepper. Roast chicken until an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of breast registers 165°F, 12–15 minutes. Let cool slightly before slicing.
If desired, serve with Dijon or grainy mustard for dipping.