Keto diet: Everything to know about the high-fat, low-carb diet for fat loss
Butter bulletproof coffee. Tons of Bacon. And Avocados. Sounds like a dream, right? It's no surprise to see that with foods like these, the keto diet is trending.
With the rising awareness of the health benefits of fat and growing concern over over-processed foods, it makes sense that a high-fat, low-carb, moderate-protein diet appeals to many of us. With celebrities such as Kim Kardashian and Halle Berry hopping on board with the keto lifestyle, it is safe to assume that the keto diet is here to stay.
Before you start the keto diet, there's one thing important to note. The keto diet is not a quick fix. This is a lifestyle change and has the potential to drastically change your relationship with food and provide you with several health benefits. Keto is not a fad diet, but it can certainly feel like one. There are so many facets of keto that it can seem difficult to understand — or easier said than done.
Getting started on the keto diet isn't as easy as it may seem at first. A drastic change from a standard high-carb diet to a low-carb one can often stall weight loss and affect work performance.
This is where the best keto diet meal plan comes into play.
But first, let's discuss whether or not the keto diet can be for everyone.
Before beginning dietary changes, check with your doctor to see what is best for your body. For most people, the ketogenic diet is safe and provides incredible health benefits, but there are some people that should NOT attempt a ketogenic diet. Individuals with underlying health conditions may fall into this category.
If you are one of those people who cannot try the keto diet, the best thing you can do is stick to a real-food diet or the diet recommended by your doctor.
Keto Diet: What it is and what it's not
The ketogenic diet is a low-carbohydrate diet that gives your body an alternative fuel source in the form of ketones, which are derived from fat. When you eat a diet high in good quality fats and whole foods—rather than highly processed foods—you can experience many benefits of the ketogenic diet.
Eating high-fat junk food that contains chemicals, hormones, fillers, trans fats, and artificial ingredients that our bodies are unable to process is a complete no-no.
Here’s a basic guide on what foods you can eat in the keto diet
The ketogenic diet is high in fat, low in carbs, and moderate in protein. Here is a list of foods you can eat on the keto diet to stay under 20 grams of net carbs per day.
- Meats & poultry
You can eat a lot of meat on the keto diet. Meat, poultry, and soy products all work. Deli meats like cold cuts and sausages also work. Choose items that do not have carbohydrates, added sugars, or breading on them to keep your carbs low.
- Fish and Seafood
The best seafood choices are fatty fish such as salmon, sardines, mackerel, and herring. Mild white fish such as cod, halibut, and trout are also good options.
- Cheese & full-fat dairy product
Cheese, butter, and cream can all be part of a low-carb diet. Plain Greek yogurt is a good choice: it's high in protein and calcium and has very few carbohydrates.
Translation: Avoid flavored low-fat yogurts because they often contain an insane amount of added sugar.
- Include Eggs
Eggs are easy to prepare and delicious. Boiled eggs, fried in butter, or an omelet are perfect if you're looking for a quick, inexpensive meal. Enjoy eggs because when you avoid carbs, you don’t have to avoid dietary cholesterol.
- The Merry Berries
Many fruits are high in sugar, so you'll have to watch your serving sizes. Berries are an exception, though. Because they're so low in sugar, they can be eaten as a dessert—just make sure to keep the portions small.
- Nuts and other seeds
While most nuts are low in carbs, some nuts and seeds, such as cashews or sunflower seeds, are higher in carbs than others, such as pecans or macadamia nuts. You can enjoy pumpkin, sunflower, and other seeds on a ketogenic diet.
If you're curious about the ketogenic diet but not ready to commit to it, you can try incorporating elements of the diet into your daily routine. Avocado and fried eggs with hot sauce are delicious and fatty enough to qualify as keto.
Not everyone can—or should— follow the keto diet, but everyone can reap the benefits of a high-fat diet.