Plus, many nuts are salted and may have been roasted in a tasty oil. That makes them really enticing and can lead to overeating or binging on them, which can cause weight gain as well as kick you out of nutritional ketosis. With that in mind, if you find yourself feeling out of control around nuts, you might be better off staying away from them altogether.
Processed meats, like hot dogs, deli meat and sausages, typically contain sulfites. “Sulfites are not healthy for anyone, they are carcinogenic and may be harmful to people with respiratory disorders,” Hunnes says. “Also, processed meats are carcinogenic (class I) according to the World Health Organization.” Beyond that, sulfites can cause certain vitamins — like folate, thiamine, and nicotinamide — in your food to break down more rapidly and you miss out on those nutrients. Thiamineand nicotinamide have been shown to have powerful neuroprotective properties, and folic acid helps with DNA production. So, yeah, pretty important stuff.
So, how do we ensure enough super-plant based nutrition on keto? Fortunately there are loads of low carb vegetables and keto friendly fruit you can choose from! Let’s start with low carb vegetables - specifically the green ones! The green color in plants is called chlorophyll. Plants use chlorophyll to capture sunlight and turn it into energy. Chlorophyll protects the body from cancer and cleanses the liver. Amazingly, our bodies can also use chlorophyll inside our mitochondria. This is why green juices, made fresh or from powders, give us a rapid natural energy boost. Green leafy plants like Kale, Spinach and Collard Greens reduce the risk of cancer and many other diseases. Make sure you eat your greens on keto!
Consumption of EPA and DHA in fish three times per week has been found to be a major predictor of better weight management because of improved insulin resistance (44). Furthermore, consuming at least 2 servings of fish per week is associated with a decrease in various types of chronic disease including cancer and Alzheimer disease (45, 46). It is also wise to use a high quality fish oil supplement to add more anti-inflammatory fish oils to your diet.
For this reason, it’s best to fill your plate mostly with healthy fats, protein foods and non-starchy vegetables, all of which can provide a good amount of nutrients and a low amount of carbs to help optimize your diet. Avocados, along with other fats such as coconut oil, olive oil, ghee and grass-fed butter, can be used to boost your intake of heart-healthy fats to reach ketosis. However, other higher-carb varieties such as berries, watermelon or cantaloupe should be consumed in small amounts and used as a substitute for high-sugar sweets and snacks the next time cravings strike. Also, check out these other keto friendly snacks.
Low carb vegetables and keto friendly fruits are packed with super-nutrition, but you can get an even bigger dose of health from some specialist plants known to boost your body. Called superfoods these plants have super-special gifts for mankind. While there is no strict definition but superfood, they are often exceptionally high in nutrition, with specific and potent medicinal qualities, aid weight loss and hormonal balance, reduce oxidation and are naturally anti-aging. They are often from harsh environments where they need to produce specific compounds in self defense.
Most fruits are high in carbs and a natural source of sugar. This means that delicious, sweet fruits like mangoes, pomegranates, lychee, pears, kiwi, bananas and even apples may not make great choices if you're trying to stick with a ketogenic diet. Not being able to have apples on the keto diet may surprise you — after all, apples have such a good reputation for being healthy!
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This strict restriction in carbohydrates means that a lot of foods need to be eliminated. Foods that are normally considered healthy, like fruits, have a high carb content — and the general rule is that the higher the number of carbohydrates the less of that food you can have on a ketogenic diet. Unfortunately, this means that many otherwise healthy, high-carb fruits, like apples and bananas, must be eliminated, eaten rarely or eaten only in very small amounts.
That's why keto die-hards are notorious for eating plenty of bacon and cheese. However, if you're tired of eating the same bunless cheeseburger every night, there are plenty of meat-based fat sources you likely haven't tried. Get creative and make one of these five fatty cuts of meat for dinner. Of course, it's best not to go overboard and eat these for every meal–most dietitians recommend getting healthy fats from plant-based sources like nuts and avocado.
If you choose to make your sauces and gravies, you should consider investing in guar or xanthan gum. It’s a thickener that’s well known in modern cooking techniques and lends a hand to low carb by thickening otherwise watery sauces. Luckily there are many sauces to choose from that are high fat and low carb. If you’re in need of a sauce then consider making a beurre blanc, hollandaise or simply brown butter to top meats with.
Most vegan protein sources (lentils, beans) are way too carb-heavy for keto, even if you don’t care that much about sticking to a strict Paleo diet. But if you eat eggs and dairy, it’s definitely possible to have a vegetarian keto diet that’s adequate in protein, reasonably varied and quite tasty. It would likely be lower in protein than a meat-heavy keto diet, but if that works well for you, then it’s totally fine!
When trying to shift from a high carb diet to a ketogenic diet, cravings can definitely get strong. It’s always best to try to clean house before you start so that you don’t have food around you that can lead to cravings. We recommend that when switching to keto, you restrict using sweeteners completely for the first 30 days. It normally leads to breaking sugar addiction and ultimately not having cravings.
This is a great article!! I love pecans, walnuts, macadamia and Brazil nuts. Moderation is definitely the key. I don't think I could ever cut them out completely, and so glad this article backs up my thoughts about them. It's also nice to hear a good word about flax! For a few months now I've read nothing but bad about it and though I have some I've avoided using it. Now I think I will start adding it back in! Thanks for all this research!!
Nuts are a great source of fat, and can be a great keto snack. However, it is easy to go overboard. Most nuts are calorically dense, so they can be easy to over-consume. On more than one occasion, I have found myself sitting next to the jar of nuts and “just having a few more”. Before I was aware, I had probably consumed 800 extra calories of nuts! Depending on your goals, consuming nuts in excess can hinder your progress. That’s not to say that nuts are off limits, though. Instead, portion out single servings beforehand. Avoid sitting down with the entire container. This goes for every other snack, but I feel that nuts are one of the easiest things to overeat.