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A simple recovery smoothie for post-strength training session - Keto and Paleo Friendly.
I’m not a Silicon Valley executive, but like them I’ve recently dabbled in the keto diet after looking into its metabolic and cognitive benefits. As a researcher and teacher, what I like most about the strict diet is how my mind feels—an increase in focus and lift in mood when the brain switches from relying on glucose metabolism to feeding on 𝛽-hydroxybutyrate (BHB), a ketone body. Ketones are produced by the liver once it’s depleted of its glycogen stores and has to rely instead on mobilizing fat for energy. Since it is so strict I tend to cycle in and out of ketosis depending on social events, travel, etc. In fact some recent studies have suggested that naturally cycling in and out of ketogenesis might be optimal for some.
One lifestyle choice that always remains the same for me, however, is my daily workout. And as many keto-dabblers have discovered, combining keto with strength training can be tough. When re-fueling, a high amount of protein intake will kick you out of ketosis. Growing up I would always make a whey protein shake after a strength-training workout. When I’m in keto mode, that’s not an option.
This is where I’ve found Chapul’s cricket protein powder to be highly effective. The cricket flour in the protein blend has the complete amino acid profile that I need to rebuild muscle; but that same base also includes healthy fat and fiber, two macro-nutrients that help mediate the protein adsorption.
When I’m trying to deepen my level of ketosis—say, after enjoying a fairly normal, carb-moderate meal with friends the night before—I adopt the strategy of former UFC fighter Brendan Schaub by adding healthy fats and MCT oil to the protein. But whereas Schaub relies on almond butter and chia seeds for unsaturated fat, I prefer avocado. The avocado is high in unsaturated fat and it’s a great source of potassium, a micronutrient that keto dieters tend to be low in.
The MCT oil (fat in the form of medium chain triglycerides) is a staple of most keto shakes because it’s quickly metabolized into energy. I generally prefer to get my fats from whole food sources, but when I need to get into ketosis fast, MTC oil does the job better than anything else.
The resulting smoothie is extremely simple: Chapul protein blend (choose your favorite flavor), avocado, MCT oil, a few ice cubes, and water. That’s it!
Nutritional values (per serving)
Ingredients (makes 1 serving)
1 serving (36 g) Chapul Vanilla Cricket Protein Powder
1 tbsp MCT oil
1 ½ cups water
2-3 ice cubes
Halve the avocado, remove the seed, and add ½ to the blender. Add the remaining ingredients and blend. For a smoother texture, add more water. Enjoy!