Do you want to take the guesswork out of your diet? Well, there's an app for it. Read my review about the Keto Diet app.
I have been eating low carb for over two years now, learning along the way. I've been geeking out online on the subject and reading books. I've adapted my favourite recipes and looked up the carbohydrate content of foods, figuring out for myself which are the good, the bad and the ugly.
Many times, I've been surprised how substituting one single item for another can lower the carb and sugar content of a dish significantly without impacting the taste and deliciousness. Like they say, the devil is in the detail!
My approach to eating has been simple - no white carbs, cut out sugar, eat veggies with every meal. Generally, eat when hungry and stop when full. Above all, always enjoy food.
This way, I have managed to stay healthy (you can read more about my story here) and I've shed a couple of unwanted pounds on the way. It works for me, but it is not very scientific.
We all have different personal health and weight goals. What if you THINK you're doing everything right, but the scales tell a different story? What if you feel it's impossible to stay on track without help? What if your life is just too busy to stay organised?
This is where the Keto Diet App comes into play.
It's a useful piece of kit if you want to take the guesswork out of eating low carb and make sure you're getting the right amount of nutrients. It's highly customisable and has lots of useful features that help you stay focused and reach your goals. I've been trying it out for a couple of weeks - here's the lowdown.
Who is behind the app?
Keto Diet app was launched in 2012 by my blogger friend Martina Slajerova, alongside her popular Keto Diet blog, which is packed with whole food low carb recipes. Martina recovered from the autoimmune disease Hashimoto's by following a ketogenic diet. She is the author of 5 low carb cookbooks - I recently reviewed The Beginner's Keto Diet Cookbook here on the blog and made these amazing Mexican Chocolate Fudgesicles from it. She also hosts fab barbecues!
How much does it cost?
Between $3.99 and $8.99. There's no monthly subscription, just a one-off purchase cost. Out of the two versions of the app, Keto Diet has more features than Keto Diet Basic (see the individual prices in the image below). If you really want to kickstart your diet, the full version is a lot more helpful as it has menu planning and tracking features. These are not available with the Basic version.
Does it explain Keto and low carb?
Absolutely. The app comes with a comprehensive guide that covers all kind of questions people have about eating low carb. It explains the basics - which foods to stock up on and which to avoid, for example - and answers advanced questions such as how to measure your ketones (Your body produces ketones in the liver when it is in a state of ketosis. When you're in ketosis, your metabolism utilises fat rather than glucose - that's how you can lose weight quickly and efficiently).
How do I get started?
In the pic above you can see the dropdown menu - this app is very comprehensive. First though, you fill out your profile, including your height, weight, activity level and body fat. There's a body fat calculator on the Keto Diet App website to help you with this.
Then you can set your net carbs limit. I do not want to lose weight and I know that I don't do well on too few carbs, so I set mine to 25 net carbs, which was the default option the app provides.
Note that you can and should set the carbs limit to whichever level is right for you. If you're just getting started, you might want to set it higher and gradually lower it. We're all different and this is not a competition. Eating should always be a pleasure!
As you can see above, the app calculates your macros - your carbohydrate, protein and fat requirements - per day.
Now let's start with the meal planning!
There are various intuitive ways you can record what you're eating throughout the day.
- If you're making something simple - say, eggs and avocado for breakfast - you can choose from a list of thousands of single ingredients. There's an option to specify the amounts in every common measurement from grams to cups.
- If you want inspiration, you can choose from over 300 meals with step-by-step instructions specifically developed for the app. Also integrated is Martina's Keto Diet Blog with over 700 more recipes. These will populate in your planner with all nutritional data.
- If you have your own favourite recipes, you can create and save them as custom meals. I have done this with my almond cream cheese pancakes - see the image below.
- There's even a feature which allows you to scan barcodes. I tried this on a range of products and it worked really well. You can then specify the amount you want to include in your meal. When a scanned product is not yet included in the app (this happened with a pack of frozen blueberries I scanned), you have the option to manually enter the nutrition amounts. This would be useful for products you use regularly, as they are saved in the app.
- The app also makes shopping easy. With a click, you can add all or some ingredients of a meal to your shopping basket. You can then email yourself the shopping list or print it out.
The one interesting thing I found about my own eating habits is that I'm A SNACKER!
Friends, my office is right next to my kitchen. It's a slice of cheese here, a yummy little fat bomb there, a crunchy celery stick to finish. Normally, this happens on autopilot. When you have to record every single item on an app though, you come to the conclusion than eating a proper meal would be way easier. And probably more satisfying.
How can I view my progress?
Your net carb intake is shown as a bar chart. You can also view a chart of your macros as well as your water intake, weight change and body stats - as long as you have recorded them daily. Keto Diet app is a superb tracker.
As you can see from my chart, my net carb intake varies quite a bit. The day I missed out I was at a friend's and ate so much that I didn't attempt to record it. If you're not at home, keeping track of your food can be tricky, especially when you're having fun.
The day I exceeded the 25 net carbs it was a few root vegetables, yoghurt and blueberries that increased the carbohydrate intake. Looking at the chart and seeing the yellow bar though made me feel like I'd done something wrong. Whilst the orange colour makes the results easier to differentiate, I feel using a different kind of green would be better for the soul - at least for mine 🙂
What if I want to eat out?
I love this part of the Keto Diet App. It lists hundreds of restaurant chains with their full menus decoded. All meals are sorted by their net carb content. You can easily add a restaurant meal to the planner by clicking the plus icon.
The Keto Diet app team is even adding restaurant chains upon request, which will be included in the next update. If you have a favourite chain that's not yet included, you can ask for it to be added by tapping on the "add my favourite restaurant" button. How's that for service!
I think this app delivers amazing quality for a very little money. It is a very useful tool if you're looking to lose weight or want to track your macros. And it will probably give you surprising insights about your own eating habits that you might not be aware of.
I'm running a DOUBLE GIVEAWAY over on Instagram!
I'm giving away 80 copies of the Keto Diet App, so head over there to grab your free Promo Code - first come, first served!
You also have a chance to win free copies of Martina's 30-Day Keto Diet Plans. Good luck!
The giveaway runs until Sunday July 8th, 6pm GMT. If you don't want to wait, you can buy the KetoDiet app here.
This review is sponsored by Keto Diet app. All opinions and observations are my own.