Episode 29: AMA | Keto Snacks, Net Carbs & Loose Skin

Curious about our favorite keto snacks? Dr. Simonds and Michelle Kennedy, NP-C streamed live from the Raleigh office for their Ask Me Anything event and shared their favorite snack go-to’s. Thank you for tuning in and submitting your questions. We really hope these questions and answers are helpful for those on a weight loss or health journey.

Q: What are your go-to keto snacks?

A: What a fun question! For Dr. Simonds and probably for many people, it really depends on the mood. For a sweet taste, Dr. Simonds has been enjoying a new Quest bar that is sweetened with allulose and has a rice crispy texture. It only has 3g net carbs and doesn’t have any weird aftertaste. For a salty snack, Dr. Simonds enjoys Quest chips (especially the tortilla flavor) and you’ll find him snacking on those several times a week at the office. Make sure to check out some great keto recipes on Dr. Simonds Instagram, The Casual Keto Doctor for some great ideas!

Michelle usually craves snacks on the salty side and especially loves avocado with salt, string cheese, deli meat, and hard boil eggs. Vegetables are also a go-to snack for Michelle and she loves to make a sour cream dip with Everything But The Bagel Seasoning. Cream cheese and celery are delicious topped off with EBTB seasoning too! Olives are also a great snack and they also come in easy-to-grab and go containers. Pork rinds are a great savory treat and come in so many flavors. Beef jerky and beef sticks are easy to find and so convenient for a snack attack. Nuts are an excellent snack and you can find some exciting flavored varieties in convenient snack packs. We carry an excellent selection at both offices!

For those that have sweet cravings, there are so many options available. Slim-fast makes several keto sweet treats that are sweetened with Erythritol and have very low net carbs. Keto bars and cookies made from Quest are very popular. The market for keto bars has come a long way and you can find so many different flavors and textures!

We are also big fans of protein shakes, either powder or premade varieties that are keto-friendly. You can even find protein shakes with fruity flavors that are especially great during the summer. Dr. Simonds favorite flavor tastes just like fruity pebbles cereal and has 1 gram of carbs and 25 grams of protein. Make sure to use water or unsweetened nut milk and avoid cow’s milk due to the high sugar content.

Visit our Protein Market Place at our Raleigh or Durham office for some great snacks!

Q: After my wife and I had our second child, I’ve found myself the most overweight I’ve been. I’ve tried working out, but it really just makes me hungrier. Do you treat a lot of men in your practice?

A: Yes, we do treat many men at the practice. That’s great that you’re working out! The first step is to get the hunger under control by limiting carbohydrate consumption and we also like to prescribe an effective and safe appetite suppressant such as phentermine. It’s really a game-changer and we’ve had so much success with this combination. Contact our office if you would like more information.

Q: Is there a perfected way to count net carbs? I hear varying opinions. And does it really matter?

A: This is an excellent question and we understand that it can be confusing, especially when reading food labels for keto products. Net carbs basically take the total number of carbohydrates and then subtracts the fiber and sugar alcohols for the net carbs. For example, a product may have 20 total carbohydrates but only have 5 grams of net carbs after subtracting the fiber and sugar alcohols. It’s important to pay attention to these numbers in order to keep blood sugar levels down and remain in ketosis. While net carbs are a good general rule to follow, it’s important to avoid these packaged foods if you can’t lose weight while consuming them. It’s highly individual on how your body will respond. If you’re failing to lose weight, it’s best to stick with the perimeter of the grocery store and select whole, unprocessed foods such as meat, cheese, butter, eggs, and vegetables. We also suggest that you avoid prepackaged foods if they are triggering and you find it difficult to limit your serving size.

Q: Does diet really make a difference with your skin? I have struggled with weight and bad skin for most of my life.

A: While you can have bad skin with a good diet and good skin with a bad diet, we find that generally when the diet is on point, the skin is better. This has a lot to do with gut health and inflammation. Sugar and highly processed foods are incredibly inflammatory and may cause skin issues. Many that follow low carbohydrate diets report better skin, hair, and nails and this is also due to getting adequate protein.

Q: Are there any effective ways to avoid loose skin when losing weight?

A: This really depends on the individual. We suggest that patients lose the weight and maintain the weight loss for at least 6 months while exercising. After 6 months, you’ll know how your skin has responded to weight loss. For excessive amounts of loose skin, some patients will consult with a qualified plastic surgeon for correction. While surgery is an option, we find that most patients are quite surprised at how well they look and are very happy with their results. Adequate protein intake, physical activity, and building up the muscles are effective and can go a long way. There are also some great non-surgical options to help tighten skin and reduce fat such as InMode. This pain-free, non-surgical procedure is offered at our Durham office and performed by a highly skilled registered nurse. We offer a complimentary consultation to see if you are a candidate for this option and what type of results to expect based on your body areas of concern. Contact us for more information.

Q: No matter what I do, I can’t seem to lose my “pooch.” I’m fairly skinny. Why do some women carry weight on their bellies?

A: This is often the most stubborn area for many women. There can be a variety of reasons as to why this is the case such as pregnancy, c-section scars, and hormones. As women age, hormonal changes and lower levels of estrogen can cause insulin resistance, which often results in an increase in belly fat. For thinner people with subcutaneous fat concerns like you’ve described, we like to suggest exercise and getting adequate amounts of protein. Focus on weight training and some cardiovascular exercise.