Many people swear by the diet that’s called keto.
It may seem strange that a diet can contain so many fats, but that’s the basis of keto meals. The diet involves the process of ketosis, which converts fats into energy instead of carbohydrates or sugars. If you aren’t consuming a lot of carbs, the body naturally turns to fat. The fat reserves already in the body remain as energy targets, which causes people to lose weight.
Take an in-depth look at the foods to avoid on the keto diet along with smart alternatives. Following the rules might lead to substantial weight loss.
Nonfat or Low-Fat Foods
Shake off the idea of eating no fat on a diet. The keto process is completely different than traditional diets. If you use nonfat or low-fat oils to cook your food, ketosis cannot be achieved. Your body will still burn carbohydrates, which won’t create the weight loss that you’re looking for in the first place.
Think about cooking with butter or using olive oil instead. Coconut oil is another alternative for a unique taste to any meal. The food doesn’t have to be swimming in fat, but use an ample amount. Both meat and vegetables cook nicely in dense fats. Natural flavors arise, and you may not notice the lack of carbs within the meal.
You might make your own fats too, such as when you render down a pork roast. Lard is a natural fat that comes from pork, which can also be added to a keto diet. Although it’s natural, the fat is full of calories that match the keto-diet theory.
Count up the number of carbs that you eat in a given day, and the volume may be staggering. The keto diet requires the elimination of most refined carbs. These items include common favorites, such as:
- White rice
The body converts these products into sugars as they move through the digestive system. Consume refined carbs, and you’ll burn these molecules instead of fat. Weight loss won’t be the result of your efforts.
If you need a break from the carb elimination, look for Shirataki noodles. They have a minimal amount of carbs because they’re made from a fiber called glucomannan and water. Substitute these noodles for carb dishes on almost any plate.
Skipping regular carbs may be difficult at first, but your body will learn to adjust. Burning fat as another resource just needs to be activated with the keto diet.
If you’re concerned about carbs on a keto diet, that fact also includes naturally occurring sugars. Along with avoiding refined sugars, starches that include potatoes and bananas are also off-limits. They will supply sugars that the body will use instead of fat itself.
One strategy to satisfy your carb cravings is by substituting cauliflower for many recipes. Mashed potatoes can now be cauliflower-based recipes, for example. The sweetness from bananas might come from sweet butter or creams in other recipes. Creativity must be part of your daily diet so that these natural sugars remain out of your meals.
Be on the lookout for natural sugars that might be hidden in certain pre-packaged meals too. If you must eat out, ask if a meal is keto-approved. Potatoes are a root that is often hidden in many recipes. Many groceries now sell pre-packaged meals that are listed as keto-approved foods. Your diet can move forward even if you don’t have a chance to cook every day.
Take a look at the yogurts on the store shelves today. Most of the products have a low-fat or nonfat designation. When you’re on the keto diet, you want to avoid these foods. In fact, look for yogurts and other dairies that are marked as high-fat mixtures.
As the keto diet becomes more popular than ever before, grocery stores are stocking these high-fat items. They might even be located in a keto-friendly corner of the dairy section.
Using creams, high-fat yogurt and other items in recipes is also a good way to incorporate these foods into your daily diet. Avoid products that are soy-based types, however. Although soy is plant-based, it doesn’t have the fats that are necessary for the keto diet. Soy milk, in particular, doesn’t have the nutrients to support your keto diet either. It’s always better to choose a high-fat dairy product instead of a soy item in most cases.
Lean meats that are always touted as healthy for you will not give you the fat-burning boost that you need. Turn to high-fat meats, such as rib-eye beef and dark-meat chicken, as regular components of your weekly meals. Fatty meats are easy to spot in the market because of their marbled appearance. You might even ask the butcher for extra fat on a cut from his inventory.
Be slightly picky with your meats when it comes to their origin. Grass-fed beef will have more nutrients than traditional cattle, for example. Spread out your meat entrees throughout the day so that the digestive system has a chance at moving the fats into your bloodstream. Try breakfast meats in the morning, chicken at lunch and a hearty beef steak at dinner. The body will have ample fats to use as energy.
Leading a vegetarian lifestyle isn’t conducive to the keto diet. In particular, seafood is a meal choice that must be part of your weekly meals. Most experts suggest that two meals a week should be full of seafood selections.
Try these choices to diversify your diet, such as:
If you’re a shellfish fan, moderate your intake of these foods. Clams and mussels, for instance, have a certain amount of carbs to their nutrient mixtures. It’s always better to stick to fatty fish when you want to limit your carbs as much as possible.
Fresh fish is best, but don’t overlook the convenience of canned, bagged or frozen seafood. The nutrients in these selections are still valuable for keto diets.
Starchy Vegetables and Grains
From oats to potatoes, these items are staples in most diets but not for keto. Remind yourself when you’re filling out your lunch or dinner plate that carbs aren’t really necessary. They’re more of a habit for people.
Replace the starchy carbs with leafy greens. In fact, there are many varieties of leafy greens that can be used. Kale, lettuce and collard greens are good examples of leafy greens. Plant a few in your garden if possible. Fresh greens are attractive to the eye.
Remember that many above-ground vegetables, such as zucchini and squash, can be formed into “noodles.” They’ll look like your favorite carb, but they’ll offer the nutrients that you need from vegetables.
Your plate should have a mixture of proteins, fats, and vegetables at every meal. Pile the vegetables onto the plate. Whether you saute them or eat them raw, they’ll fill you up with fiber. Your vegetable “noodles” that act as a visual carb might curb that craving as you eat a traditional keto meal.
Avoid the egg-white recipes and stick to the entire egg in your meals and snacks. The yolk may have a reputation for high cholesterol, but it also contains nutrients that you want in your keto diet. Find critical antioxidants in the egg as well.
The beauty of eggs in a diet is their versatility. You can cook them in butter or boil them for a hard-boiled treat. They make you feel full and satiated at the same time. Eggs are mostly protein, so their molecular structure is more akin to meat than to a natural carb.
Moderate your intake of eggs so that the cholesterol doesn’t impact your cardiovascular health. Try to limit your intake to six or fewer eggs each day. Protein can come from other sources, including seafood and meat. By diversifying your diet, the body can function at its optimal levels.
Most fruits are not part of the keto diet, but the avocado is different. This fruit is full of healthy fats that only complement other fats in your diets, such as from meats and seafood. Don’t overlook the power of the avocado. In fact, it can be stacked tall or mixed into a guacamole treat whenever you desire.
Potassium is the main ingredient in avocados that you want in your life. It contributes to both muscle and cardiovascular health. Avocados themselves also make you feel full with their rich fats.
Ideally, pick avocados that are fresh in the produce section. The natural fats are what you’re looking for in this fruit. There are pre-packaged mixtures of guacamole, but read those labels with care. There might be additional sugars in those products that you don’t want in your keto diet.
You can technically eat plenty of avocados with each meal. They work well as a main dish or delectable side.
Don’t eat cashews when you’re on a strict keto diet. Cashews tend to have more carbs than other nuts. When you look at a standard nut, the nutrient divisions are normally between protein and fats. Cashews, however, have carbs that are substantial when you’re counting them in the single digits.
Turn to other nuts that are more conducive to a keto diet, such as macadamia nuts. You’re looking for any nuts that have nearly zero carbs in their nutritional labels.
If you want to add a dash of cashews to your diet, consider a tiny serving of less than one ounce. You’ll gain the other nutrients, such as copper and magnesium, from the cashews. The net carbs end up being minimized with a tiny portion on your plate.
However, most keto enthusiasts appreciate fewer carbs in each bite. Simply select other types of nuts to curb any cravings.
An item that’s often missed in a keto diet is soda. Any canned soda is full of sugars that negate the benefits of an otherwise solid, keto diet. It’s also questionable to drink diet sodas too. Although the keto diet approves of some artificial sweeteners, such as sucralose, they should always be minimized wherever possible.
Alternatively, turn to water as an obvious choice. You should drink more water than any other liquid on a suggested keto-diet list. Try bagged teas without additional sugar, coffee in its pure form and even bone broth as drinks.
Bone broth may seem out of place as a refreshing drink, but it offers key nutrients without sugars. You might sip on bone broth before bedtime so that you feel full and satisfied.
Be careful with coffee because adding sugar makes it a poor drink to rely on during a keto diet. Add whole milk to cut the bitterness instead of pouring in the sugar.
Avoid milk chocolate when you’re on a keto diet. Specifically, milk chocolate tends to have a lot of sugars added to it. It becomes more of a carbohydrate for the body than the cocoa bean’s true identity.
In their purest forms, cocoa powder and dark chocolate match well with a keto diet. The antioxidants found in this fruit can fight off disease and strengthen the cardiovascular system.
Look for dark chocolate that advertises a 70-percent volume of cocoa beans. When you select a high-concentration of cocoa, the health benefits outweigh the potential sugars in the mixture. Chocolate with 70-percent cocoa can be bitter, but you can mix it with other items to balance out the flavors.
Along with its antioxidants, dark chocolate is also known for its potential to help the arteries with plaque eradication. Adding dark chocolate into the diet might improve your health along with assisting in weight loss.
When it comes to any diet, working with your doctor is imperative. Clear the keto diet with your physician so that there’s no concern about pre-existing conditions, such as heart disease or cholesterol levels. With this diet and a healthy lifestyle, weight loss can occur at any age.