Studies have found that not only keto diet is effective for weight loss but also this very low-carb, high-fat diet is effective for treating diabetes and epilepsy.
It is also very beneficial in treating other diseases too such as cancers, Alzheimer’s disease, and many more.
There are a lot of health benefits of keto diet. Although some might even say that there are some side effects of ketogenic diet but those are mostly short-time side effects. The health benefits surely outweigh the side effects. This is the reason most physicians and dietitians prefer keto diet over other diet plans.
While dieting can be challenging sometimes, keto diet is comparatively very easy to follow and will help you lose weight in no time. The best part is – you won’t even feel hungry when dieting.
A ketogenic diet typically limits carbs to 20–50 grams per day. You don’t have to count calories as many nutritious foods can easily fit into this way of eating.
Here are some healthy foods that you eat on a ketogenic diet.
Most fish and shellfish are very keto-friendly foods. These contain very fewer carbs and are rich in B vitamins, potassium, and selenium. Fatty fish like salmon and other fish are very rich in vitamins, yet virtually carb-free.
If you have concerns about mercury or other toxins, consider eating more of the smaller fish like sardines, mackerel, and herring.
However, the carbs in different types of shellfish vary. For instance, while shrimp and most crabs contain no carbs, other types of shellfish do contain fewer carbs. But seafood is a very healthy choice for keto diet.
Here are the carb counts for 3.5-ounce (100-gram) servings of some popular types of shellfish
- Octopus: 4 grams
- Oysters: 4 grams
- Clams: 5 grams
- Mussels: 7 grams
- Squid: 3 grams
Also, Salmon, sardines, mackerel and other fatty fish are very high in omega-3 fats, which have been found to lower insulin levels and increase insulin sensitivity in overweight and obese people.
2. Low-Carb Vegetables
Non-starchy vegetables are high in many nutrients, including vitamin C and several minerals but low in calories and carbs. This is what makes it a great choice for keto diet meal plan.
Vegetables and other plants contain fiber, which your body doesn’t digest and absorb like other carbs. Therefore the net carb count is very less.
Vegetables are a tasty way to eat good fat on keto. Fry your vegetables in butter and pour plenty of olive oil on your salad. Olive oil is a very keto-friendly food that contains a lot of fat. Green leafy vegetables also contain a lot of fat. They also add more variety, flavor and color to your keto meals.
Most vegetables contain very few net carbs. However, if you eat one serving of starchy vegetables like potatoes, yams, or beets it could put you over your entire carb limit for the day.
Vegetables also contain antioxidants that help protect against free radicals, which are unstable molecules that can cause cell damage.
Studies show that vegetables like kale, broccoli, and cauliflower have been linked to decreased cancer and heart disease risk.
Not only it is delicious but also it contains a lot of nutrients.
There are hundreds of types of cheese. But the best is that all of them are very low in carbs and high in fat. This makes cheese a great fit for a ketogenic diet.
One ounce (28 grams) of cheddar cheese provides 1 gram of carbs, 7 grams of protein and 20% of the RDI for calcium. Some studies suggest that cheese can help protect from heart disease though it is high in saturated fat.
Avocados are very healthy. 3.5 ounces (100 grams), or about one-half of a medium avocado, contain 9 grams of carbs. However, 7 of these are fiber, so its net carb count is only 2 grams.
Studies suggest that avocados might help improve cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Avocados are high in several vitamins and minerals, including potassium.
Some study shows that avocados help to decrease ‘LDL’ cholesterol and increases the good ‘HDL’ cholesterol.
Eggs are not just healthy but one of the most versatile food on the planet. One large egg contains less than 1 gram of carbs and fewer than 6 grams of protein, making eggs an ideal food for a ketogenic lifestyle. In addition, eggs have been shown to trigger hormones that increase feelings of fullness and keep blood sugar levels stable, leading to lower calorie intake for up to 24 hours.
Eggs are also said to decrease the risk of heart disease.
Meat is considered a staple food. It is one of the best sources for protein and meat is also rich in B vitamins and several minerals, including potassium, selenium, and zinc.
Fresh unprocessed meat contains little or no carbs which make it very keto-friendly. Organic meat and grass-fed meat are even healthier. It is better if you can eat grass-fed meat is possible. Animals that are grass-fed produce meat with higher amounts of omega-3 fats, conjugated linoleic acid and antioxidants than meat from grain-fed animals. Keto is a high-fat diet, so you don’t actually need a lot of protein in your meal. Excess protein produces glucose which makes it harder for your body to get into ketosis. So try to eat lesser meat when starting out and when in doubt try to eat meat with less than 5% carb.
7. High Fat Sauce
Keto diet is a high-fat diet. Most of the calories on a keto diet should come from fat. You’ll likely get much of it from natural sources like meat, fish, eggs, and other sources. But also use fat in cooking, like butter or coconut oil, and feel free to add plenty of olive oil to salads and vegetables. You can also eat delicious high-fat sauces, including Bearnaise sauce, garlic butter, and others.
8. Olive Oil
Not only olive oil is healthy for your ketogenic lifestyle, but it also has a lot of other health benefits as well. Especially for your heart as it is high in oleic acid which has been found to decrease heart disease risk in many scientific studies.
Furthermore, extra-virgin olive oil is high in antioxidants known as phenols. These compounds further protect your heart health by decreasing inflammation and improving artery function.
Olive oil is a great source of fat which makes it very keto-friendly. Try adding it to your food or salad. Make sure to add olive to your meal after it is cooked.
Nuts are very healthy, high-fat, and low-carb snacks. This makes nuts a great choice for keto-diet.
Medical studies show that eating nuts can reduce the risk of heart disease, certain cancers, depression, and other chronic diseases. Also, nuts are full of fiber which helps you feel full and you end up eating less fiber.
Nuts are great for snacks but sometimes you can eat a lot more than you need. Try eating 1/2 cup of nuts per day. Try avoiding cashew nut as it is comparatively high in carbs than other nuts.
Here is the list of carb count for 1 ounce of some popular nuts.:
- Almonds: 3 grams net carbs (6 grams total carbs)
- Brazil nuts: 1 gram net carbs (3 grams total carbs)
- Cashews: 8 grams net carbs (9 grams total carbs)
- Macadamia nuts: 2 grams net carbs (4 grams total carbs)
- Pecans: 1 gram net carbs (4 grams total carbs)
- Pistachios: 5 grams net carbs (8 grams total carbs)
- Walnuts: 2 grams net carbs (4 grams total carbs)
- Chia seeds: 1 gram net carbs (12 grams total carbs)
- Flaxseeds: 0 grams net carbs (8 grams total carbs)
- Pumpkin seeds: 4 grams net carbs (5 grams total carbs)
- Sesame seeds: 3 grams net carbs (7 grams total carbs)
Unlike other fruits, berries are low in carb and high in fiber. Not only they are a great for keto-diet but they also have other health benefits. Berries are known for reducing inflammation and protecting against disease. Eat berries as a keto dessert by adding whip cream.
11. Butter and Cream
When you are on a keto diet, butter and cream can be a good option to include in your ketogenic diet. They contain a lot of fat with very little of carbs per serving.
Although, butter and cream contain high saturated fat that can lead to heart disease. However, some studies have shown no link to heart disease in some people because of the high saturated fat content of butter and cream.
Other studies suggest that consuming a moderate amount of high-fat dairy products can possibly help you reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack.
Without sugar and milk, coffee can be a great treat for your keto diet. It is a really healthy carb-free drink that is perfect for your ketogenic lifestyle. Coffee contains caffeine that increases your metabolism. It also enhances your physical performances and makes you more active and alert.
Getting up and having a coffee at the beginning of the day will give you a great boost for the whole day. Not only it energizes your body but it also keeps you up from sleeping.
Furthermore, people who drink coffee regularly have a very low risk of diabetes. There are a lot of other benefits of coffee.
Olive works the same way as olive oil and have similar health benefits. Olive contains Oleuropein, that has anti-inflammatory properties and may protect your cells from damage.
Furthermore, scientific studies suggest that olives might help you by reducing blood pressure and also by preventing bone loss.
Olives mostly contain fiber for which their digestible carb content is very low.
Olives are very keto-friendly and have a lot of other health benefits.
14. Dark Chocolate
If you are bored of eating green vegetables for your keto diet and want something delicious for your ketogenic lifestyle, look no further. Dark chocolate and cocoa are delicious sources of antioxidants.
Dark chocolate can reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering blood pressure and keeping arteries healthy as they contain flavanols.
15. Bone broth
Bone broth is really hydrating, satisfying, full of nutrients and electrolytes. Furthermore, it is really simple to make! Homemade bone broth can be a great beverage to sip on the keto diet. Stir in a pat of butter for some extra energy.
Losing weight can be don’t have to be hard and painful. Keto diet is the best way of losing weight as well as improving your health.
Furthermore, keto diet allow you to have versatile foods that can be both nutritious and tasty. The best part of the ketogenic diet is that you don’t have to have an empty stomach to lose weight. Rather you can enjoy your meal and still lose weight.