The Keto or Ketogenic Diet is probably the most peculiar diet conceived for weight loss. Believe it or not, it is a diet promoting food that contains high-fat content, and yet comes with multiple health benefits. Medical research proves that the Ketogenic diet is favourable for patients suffering from diabetes, epilepsy, Alzheimer’s, and obesity. If you have established to give it a go, be prepared to consume foods that are rich in fats, contain moderate proteins, and negligible carbohydrates.
The Keto diet is not the creation of medical malpractice, and how it works is based upon simple scientific facts. As we all know, carbohydrates are the primary source of energy for our body. However, when our blood sugar is low, and the body runs out of carbs, our body enters a metabolic state called Ketosis. In the state of Ketosis, our body breaks down fat as an alternative source of energy. Our body will continue using fat deposits to yield energy until it receives a steady supply of carbohydrates.
The Keto diet strictly prohibits the consumption of starchy foods, so you can only eat about 30 to 40 grams of carbs per day. As a result, only 5% of our energy can be derived from carbs, while the remaining is produced from burning fat reserves in the body. Individuals who are adhered to eating staples like rice and bread in every meal of the day may initially have a hard time getting used to this diet.
Surprisingly, there are a lot of healthy and delicious foods allowed on a Keto Diet food list, so you won’t be too sad for missing out on the carbs.
1) Sea Food
Fish like Salmon, Tuna, Mackerel, and Sardine are protein-rich and practically carb-free. While some shellfish do contain carbs, crabs and shrimp are not on that list; containing zero carbs, they are ideal for the Keto diet food list. Seafood is basically loaded with Omega 3 fatty acids, Vitamin B, Selenium, and Potassium; all of these are essential nutrients for the body that stimulate physical and mental health.
2) Low Carb Vegetables
Low carb vegetables have high fibre content and contain minimal starch and sugars. They are also rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Plants that have less than 8 grams of carbohydrates per 100 grams are quite feasible to include in the Keto diet food list. Cauliflower, Kale, Zucchini, Cabbage, Fennel, Bell Peppers, Celery, Brussels sprouts, Spinach, Egg Plant, Broccoli, Mushrooms, and Green beans, all fit the quota.
3) Poultry & Meat
Poultry and Meat are considered the staples of the Keto diet, because they are a rich source of lean protein, and exclude any carbs. Nonetheless, processed meat is discouraged. In addition, avoid sausages and bacon; Keto does not prohibit these forms of meat, but they are categorized as unhealthy options. Chicken, Beef, and Lamb are the preferred kinds of meat, and remember to buy fresh/organic. The most excellent meat comes from grass-fed animals as it contains a higher percentage of Omega3 fats and antioxidants.
Eggs are a miracle food; they are delicious, nutritious, and consumable in infinite forms. One large egg constitutes mostly of proteins, fat, good cholesterol, and no more than 1 gram of carbohydrates. An egg is a filling food that helps us sustain energy for a long time. You can cook/prepare it in several ways, in combination with other foods allowed for the Ketogenic lifestyle.
5) Dairy Products
Have you heard of another diet that promotes dairy products? Dairy products, including whole cream, butter, cheese, and plain yoghurt, are perfect foods for the Keto diet food list. They constitute a healthy amount of fats, protein, and calcium in their organic form. Moreover, they strengthen our bones, assist muscle development, and provide the energy boost we need. Processed dairy products are not recommended because they mostly contain artificially added sugars, which elevate the carb content.
6) Nuts & Seeds
Nuts/seeds are another high-fat low-carb food, which is well suited for the Ketogenic régime. People who consume nuts/seeds on a daily or regular basis are less prone to heart diseases, depression, and certain types of cancer. They are primarily high in fibre and unsaturated fats, which are both healthy for our body. The carb content varies among different nuts/seeds; the top contender is flax seeds, with contains zero carbs.
Pecans, Brazil nuts, Walnuts, Pumpkin seeds, Macadamia nuts, and Chia seeds contain about 1-2 grams of carbs per oz. Almonds, Sesame seeds, Pistachios, and Cashew nuts have slightly higher carbohydrate content, so better munch on them in controlled portions.
7) Olives & Olive Oil
Olive oil is a limpid source of fat with zero carbs; as a food, it is the epitome of health. It is rich in oleic acid, a mono-saturated fat that is exceptionally beneficial for the heart. Olive oil can be used in cooking and raw as a salad dressing; it is ideal for homemade mayonnaise. Olives are simply the solid form of olive oil, hence equally advantageous and suitable for the Keto diet food list. Though they contain some carbs, it is mostly fibre, making it a permissible packaged snack.
8) Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is a widely held fatty food that should only be consumed in small quantities. It mainly consists of medium to long-chained triglycerides, which are saturated fats directly absorbed by the liver and converted to Ketones. Its ability to increase ketone levels in the blood helps in healing several brain and nervous system disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease.
People who include 1-2 tablespoons of coconut oil in their daily food intake are likely to lose weight because it helps burn belly fat. The unique properties of this oil (such as promoting ketosis) make it idyllic for the Ketogenic diet.
Although the majority of fresh fruits and juices are deemed as illegal substances in the Keto lifestyle, berries are the exception. Strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries are high in fibre and contain about 10 grams of carbohydrate per 100 grams. They are laden with antioxidants and possess anti-inflammatory properties, making them fit for healthy living.
Avocado is an amazing substitute for animal fat, as it is rich in mono-saturates and potassium. It is known to improve cholesterol levels in the body and provide several essential minerals. It contains some carb content, but the fibre counteracts most it.
11) Dark Chocolate& Cocoa
Unsweetened dark chocolate that simmers at least 70% cocoa is excellent to include in your keto diet food list. You may call cocoa a super-fruit that is rich in antioxidants, and dark chocolate provides flavanols, which help reduce blood pressure and keep the heart-healthy. Both contain about 3 to 10 grams of carbohydrates per ounce, so you can indulge in your favourite snack every now and then.
12) Coffee and Tea (without sugar)
The Ketogenic regime has nothing against caffeine, so you do not need to give up tea or coffee as long as you take them unsweetened. Caffeine actually boosts our metabolism, which in turn improves mental and physical performance. You can drink multiple cups of your favourite blend of coffee or tea throughout the day, and add full cream or whole milk to them as well.
Also Read: Side effects of drinking too much coffee