I bet you probably know someone who is currently on the keto diet right now. Yeah, that is right, everyone is doing it! Beyond the fact that this diet comes with certain health benefits, It has somewhat become a trend that scores you “cool point.” However, did you know that the keto lifestyle was initially recommended in the medical world for treating pediatric epilepsy? This was before it was overtaken by the weight-loss industry that has restricted the diet’s benefits to only weight-loss and has even created challenges/competitions out of it.
I know you must have heard of the “keto challenge,” or read about “how to attain ketosis in 7 days,” and you are already thinking of using this stay-at-home-order to join the keto bandwagon. However, before you do, you need to understand the principle of moderate protein, low carbohydrate, and high fat. This will help ensure a successful keto journey by knowing exactly what to eat and the amount to consume.
Therefore, we have compiled in this article the list of keto friendly foods you can eat to ensure a smooth ride on your journey to ketosis.
1. Low Carb Vegetables
Yes! Everybody loves veggies. In fact, vegetables are among the indispensable components of keto diets. However, you must be careful when selecting your vegetable by ensuring those with high carbohydrate contents are weeded out. If you feel like eating vegetables as a keto subscriber, it is recommended that non-starchy vegetables that are low in carbs, but high in many nutrients, including vitamin C and several minerals, should be your choice.
This is because non-starchy vegetables contain antioxidants that help protect against cell-damaging free radicals and in the prevention of body fat build-up. Leafy green and cruciferous vegetables that grow above the ground perfectly fit into this class. Also, ensure organic vegetables are given priority when you are buying your vegetables. Nonetheless, if you are unable to get one, you could still opt for the inorganic types since the nutrient contents are the same.
So, when next you go to the grocery, arugula, spinach, eggplant, mushrooms, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, bell peppers, fennel, cabbage, celery, brussels sprouts, and kale are the keto-friendly vegetables that should be at the top of your grocery list this month.
2. Fish and Seafood
Check your keto cookbooks and I am 100% sure that in every 3 pages, you will find at least one dish that consists mainly of fish and seafood. The reason for this could not be far fetched as fish and seafood are naturally low in carbohydrates making them an excellent option for keto adopters.
The most common fishes used in ketogenic diets are rich in protein, vitamin B, potassium, selenium as well as important omega-3 fatty acids which have been found to lower blood sugar levels and increase insulin sensitivity.
When you want to select a fish, it is advisable to select the fattier fish that is wild-caught like catfish, cod, flounder, halibut, mackerel, mahi-mahi, salmon, snapper, trout, and tuna. Clams, oysters, lobster, crab, scallops, mussels, and squid are also keto friendly seafood you can select for your next keto dish.
3. Dairy Products
Keto friendly dairy products are great ways to add extra fats into party meals by creating sauces or fatty side dishes like creamed spinach. But, always remember that it does have protein in it as well, which means proper care must be taken when pairing dairy with protein-heavy dishes.
When selecting your keto friendly dairy products, it is good to eat butter, high-fat cheese is also fine, and heavy cream is great for cooking.
This might come as a shocker to you if you are a milk lover, but as a keto subscriber, it is advisable to avoid drinking milk as the milk sugar quickly adds up (one glass = 15 grams of carbs), but you can use it sparingly in your coffee.
4. Poultry Meat and Egg
Talk of sticky chicken, chicken pot pie, and keto chicken korma. Some keto foods are majorly prepared for poultry meat lovers. Meat from poultry birds is a very good source of lean protein and is considered a staple in the ketogenic diet. Fresh poultry meat contains no carbohydrates and is rich in B vitamins and several minerals, including potassium, selenium, and zinc.
Eggs are also important poultry products that are of great value in keto diets. They are high in protein, B vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Two eggs contain zero carbohydrates and 12 grams of protein. Eggs have been shown to trigger hormones that increase feelings of fullness and keep blood sugar levels stable, and they also contain antioxidants such as lutein and zeaxanthin, which help protect eye health.
It is advisable you go for organic and grass-fed poultry products because research has found out that “not only do organic selections help with limiting environmental toxins, but grass-fed options of meats have effects on the fat composition.”
5. Nuts, Seeds, and Oils
Having nuts and seeds in your keto diets is a win-win option, as they're packed with protein to keep you fuller for longer in between meals, while also delivering a hint of healthy fats. Healthy polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, low carbs, fiber, and protein are all that you stand to benefit from consuming nuts and seeds.
Among the healthy oils, olive oil and coconut oil are the two recommended oils you can use to prepare your keto foods. Olive oil is high in oleic acid and is associated with a lower risk of heart disease. Coconut oil, on the other hand, is high in saturated fat but contains medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), which can increase ketone production which results in improved body fat loss.
Some keto friendly nuts you can pick up for your next birthday party are; macadamia nuts, flaxseed, brazil nuts, chia seeds, walnuts, pecans, hemp seeds, hazelnuts, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, and almonds.