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Can Ketogenic Diet Relieve Depression?

There is no denying that the Keto diet is known to help with weight loss. But did you know that it is also believed to help alleviate depression?

The Keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat, and moderate-protein diet. This diet is commonly recommended among people who suffer from seizures and epilepsy.

Such, diet allows you to reach a state of Ketosis, wherein the body burns fat as body fuel instead of carbohydrates. This explains why the Keto diet has become popular among those who want to lose weight fast.

But because the diet can influence the brain and nervous system, it is also believed to affect someone’s mood.

This article reviews whether the Keto diet may alleviate or worsen depression. Read on to know what the science says and how you can leverage the Keto diet if you’re feeling down. 

Depression and Keto: What Science Says?

The Keto diet has been around for a long time. It was first introduced in the 1920s to help people with epilepsy.

Researchers discovered that higher levels of blood Ketones cause fewer epileptic seizures in patients. Thus, the Keto can reshape and change the chemistry of the brain.

Since depression and the brain are connected, researchers have examined the possibility of using Keto as a treatment for depression. And the outcomes are promising.

In one research, rats put on a Keto diet ran around more than a control group. The latter shows low physical activity, which is used as a marker of depression). Thus, the researchers concluded that rats on the Keto diet are less likely to show “behavioral despair,” akin to rats dosed with antidepressants.

In another research, 8-week-old mice exposed to the Keto diet in the womb but who ate a regular diet once born were less likely to be depressed or anxious. They are also more physically active than those who were fed a usual diet in utero and postnatally.

The brain volume of mice on Keto also differed from that of the mice fed a regular diet. The decisions suggest that the Keto diet can adjust the brain’s size, at least before birth.

Other research also shows that Keto affects brain structure. In one report, Keto raised the thickness of blood vessels in the brain. In another study, it was revealed that Ketones protect brain cells from injury.

How Keto May Affect Mood and Relieve Depression

The Keto diet exerts some positive impacts on the brain and nervous system. It seems to have beneficial effects for epilepsy and migraine, other seizure strikes, and Alzheimer’s dementia.

What’s more, some scientific proof supports using the Keto diet to help treat mood disorders. This includes depression, as the diet may positively influence your brain and nervous system in many ways.

Below are some of how a Ketogenic diet may lessen depression. However, note that much of the supporting study has been conducted in animals, and more human studies are required.

Stabilizes Energy Levels

If you’re used to eating oatmeal for breakfast and a sandwich for lunch, then you’re probably accustomed to energy highs and lows.

High-carb foods create rapid spikes in blood sugar and just as rapid declines. Energy crashes alter your mood and make you feel anxious and depressed (it’s described as being “hangry” for a reason).

When your blood sugar starts to fall, your brain panics, thinking it won’t get more fuel to operate. This stress response can create depression or anxiety.

One research found that diabetic patients with fluctuating blood sugar levels exhibited higher rates of depression than patients with more constant blood sugar levels.

Ketones provide a critical source of energy for your brain since they’re metabolized quicker than glucose. Ketones give a longer-lasting, more stable source of energy.

And since your body knows it can also move into your fat stores for fuel, your brain doesn’t panic, thinking you’re running out of food.

Lowers Inflammation

When you turn to Keto, you’re turning your back on inflammatory, treated foods. This includes bread, cereal, and pasta that can harm the gut. 

Instead, you’re loading your plate with decent sources of protein, nourishing fats, and fresh vegetables. And this food can restore gut health and lower inflammation.

In one research, middle-aged people who ate a whole-food diet were less likely to be diagnosed with depression than those who don’t.

Consuming anti-inflammatory food is going to have a direct impact on your mood. Research reveals a connection between inflammation and depression:

  • Depressed people have immense levels of proinflammatory cytokines. These are molecules that the body discharges in response to inflammation.
  • People with cancer or autoimmune diseases show more excellent rates of depression. While it’s true that being sick can cause one to feel depressed, scientists think that the likely culprit is inflammation.

Keto Promotes Neurogenesis

The Keto diet can improve your rate of neurogenesis (how frequently you make new brain cells).

Why is this necessary for mood?

A profound rate of neurogenesis is linked to mood difficulties, including depression. A higher percentage, on the other hand, increases your emotional resilience. 

Diet is a crucial player in managing your rate of neurogenesis. Some foods reduce it down, while others speed it up.

A high-sugar diet (i.e., as a contrast to Keto) decreases your neurogenesis rate by spiking the insulin levels in your blood. Too much insulin diminishes all your organs, including your brain.

In one study, rats who ate a diet high in sugar and oxidized (damaged) fats exhibited diminished cognitive function after just two months. The section of the brain that was most involved was the hippocampus, where neurogenesis takes place.

Fat Feeds Your Brain

All that healthy fat that you intake on Keto feeds your brain, keeping your moods steady. Your brain is made up of approximately 60 percent fat, and it requires plenty of good fats to keep it running. 

Numerous researches confirm that omega-3 fatty acids can help overcome depression. You can find omega-3 in wild fish, grass-fed beef, and fish oils.

In one study, two varieties of omega-3 fatty acids called EPA and DHA helped serotonin’s secretion. It is a neurotransmitter (a chemical messenger) that helps improve your mood. Low serotonin levels are connected to depression.

May Increase GABA

Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is another neurotransmitter that plays a vital role in managing stress, anxiety, and mood.

Low GABA levels have been connected to clinical depression.

Animal studies have discovered that following a Ketogenic diet may improve circulating levels of GABA. However, more research is required.

May Improve Mitochondrial Function

Mitochondria are cellular components that create the energy cells need to operate. Like producing small amounts of energy for the cell to function correctly, mitochondrial dysfunction has been involved in depression.

People with depression have lesser adenosine triphosphate levels (ATP). It is an energy-giving compound in the brain.

However, Ketogenic diets may make it easier to provide ATP in people with mitochondrial dysfunction.

May Decrease Oxidative Stress

Oxidative stress pertains to cellular damage induced by free radicals. These are volatile compounds you’re exposed to in your everyday life, and they can harm cells if they build up in your body.

Oxidative stress is linked to numerous diseases and health conditions. Greater levels of this stress have also been seen in people with depression.

However, following a Ketogenic diet may increase oxidative stress markers, develop your antioxidant status, and help reverse some of the damage caused by free radicals. This can lead to enhanced depressive symptoms.

May Regulate Insulin Function

Insulin, a hormone that helps regulate your blood sugar levels, may also play a role in depression and mood.

Some people, particularly those who follow a carb-laden diet, can develop insulin resistance. This occurs when the body doesn’t react to insulin as well as it should.

Insulin resistance is connected to weight gain, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and depression.

However, following a Ketogenic diet, which restricts sugar and starch, can help you keep your blood sugar levels stable. This may also develop your insulin sensitivity.

How Keto may Cause Depression

On the other hand, the Keto diet may produce depressive symptoms or exacerbate depression in some people.

Keto can be hard to adjust to, and some general early symptoms of your body turning into Ketosis — identified as the “Keto flu” — can be challenging to control. Keto flu can include headaches, sleep disturbances, cramping, and fatigue.

However, signs occasionally manage if fluid and electrolyte intake is increased.

Although dealing with these symptoms may make you feel depressed.

You’re Not Eating Enough Nutrient-Dense Foods

It’s possible to catch Keto and still be living off junk food. It’s identified as “dirty Keto.” You follow the same analysis of fats, proteins, and carbs as regular Keto, but without being strict about counting your macros.

This means you can have a bunless bacon cheeseburger and zero-net carb soda for lunch.

Eating foods less in vitamins, minerals, and enzymes won’t do your mood any favors. Your body relies on nutrient-dense foods, especially high-quality protein and healthy fats. Doing so enables the body to produce neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, which help support mood. 

If you don’t eat sufficient of these foods, your brain cells can’t interact with each other as effectively and may transfer the wrong signals. The outcome? Your performance sanctions, and you may feel anxious and depressed.

Inflammatory foods can also tilt the balance of good and bad bacteria in your gut. 

Your gut and brain are constantly interacting with one another (it’s known as the gut-brain axis). And studies show that a gut imbalance can lead to depression and a host of other diseases and conditions.

You Have Low Levels of Electrolytes

When you first start Keto, your kidneys begin to urinate more water as your body switches from burning glucose to Ketones for energy.

This flush of water estimates the climactic weight loss people often experience when they first go on a diet. However, the downside is that your body wastes valuable electrolytes like magnesium, potassium, and salt.

Low levels of electrolytes have been connected to depression. It’s relatively simple to hack your electrolyte levels. Make sure you’re taking 2 to 2 ½ teaspoons of salt a day (Himalayan pink salt is best), and think of supplementing it with potassium (200-800 g a day) and magnesium.

Depression and Keto: A Sense of Isolation

Any diet that limits certain food groups can probably leave you feeling socially isolated, leading to depression.

When you meet your friends at an Italian restaurant and saw them all ordering pizza, you may feel left out. This sense of isolation can influence your mood.

Keto can have an impact on your socialization. And we all know how spending time with friends and family is crucial to our mental health.

5 Things to Do When Feeling Depressed Following the Keto Diet

It’s crucial to remember that there’s a difference between “feeling depressed” and having a depressive disorder.

It’s natural to feel sad sometimes, but if it’s affecting your capability to live your life normally, you should seek professional help.

If you feel that the diet itself makes you feel depressed because it’s excessively limiting, has unpleasant side effects, or is adding to social isolation, you should discontinue it.

Keto is not the only successful weight loss diet, and you can still lose weight by following other less-restrictive diets. But if you’re using the diet to control your blood sugar or epilepsy, you should discuss it with your healthcare provider for further guidance.

If you want to continue the diet, here are some approaches you can consider:

Get Support

Here’s the number one thing to consider about mental health: It’s not a field you want to navigate alone.

If you’ve begun feeling depressed while following a low-carb diet, it’s crucial to reach out for support. It can be from any of your trusted family members or a close friend, or a therapist.

A lot can trigger depression, and talking to someone can assist you in sifting through possible causes and drawing up a game plan.

Eat Low-toxin, Anti-inflammatory Foods

You want to concentrate on high-quality proteins, healthy fats, and lots of vegetables to boost your mood.

Perform Cyclically Ketosis

Cyclical Ketosis (aka carb cycling) requires carbo-loading one day of the week. The other six days, you stick with the regular low-carb Keto diet plan.

Supplementing healthy carbs like sweet potatoes and white rice once a week carries lots of perks, including improved mood. It’s easier to follow Keto when you can systematically satisfy your carb cravings and enjoy the occasional meal out.

Certain carbs, notably resistant starch, feed your good bacteria, and a balanced gut equals a balanced mood. 

Reap Mood-Boosting Supplements

Consider using mood-boosting supplements like zinc, glutathione, and l-tyrosine. An exceptionally potent supplement called 5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan) improves the production of serotonin in the brain. This can help balance your mood and enhance sleep.

Wait Out the Keto Flu

If you’ve only newly transitioned to the Keto diet, your symptoms may be tied to the Keto flu. Setting out the first few days and making sure to drink plenty of fluids and supplement electrolytes will make the shift easier.

Final Thoughts

Keto is a recommended diet for weight loss and blood sugar management, but it was intended to treat epilepsy. It can also have other powerful impacts on the brain and may influence mood disorders.

There is an increase in evidence suggesting that the Keto may help with depression in specific ways. However, the limiting nature of the diet may leave some people feeling depressed.

If you’re diagnosed with depression, you should seek help from a qualified mental healthcare provider. The same thing goes when you’re considering following the Keto to help alleviate depression.

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Keto Facts Keto Nutrition Keto Reviews

10 of the Best Lazy Keto Recipes

Do you want to feel your family good food, but you’re on a Ketogenic diet?

We know that it can be challenging to do so. But we’re here to help you find the best keto recipes that you can also whip up for your family.

What is Lazy Keto?

The term lazy keto is used mutually with dirty keto.

Lazy keto (or dirty keto) is where the only thing people track is carbs, and they try to consume less than 20 grams of carbs a day.

They don’t follow any other macros—not fat, not fiber, and not protein—just the carbs.

Another distinction between lazy keto and clean (or pure) keto is that the former enables people to eat food from whatever source they want. What’s important is that they consume less than 20 grams of carbs per day.

Many people who follow lazy/dirty keto rely massively on 1-minute mug cakes, low-carb bars, and other fast meals.

It is not as stern with the types of meals you eat or the amount of the macro ratio as long as you adhere to the 20g of carbs or less.

Lazy Keto Recipes

For the busy, the tired, and the lazy – we’ve got you covered.

Keto Fried Salmon with Asparagus

Another one-skillet sensation to savor. Just three ingredients—salmon, asparagus, and butter —molded into a tasty dinner in only 15 minutes. It’s keto, and it’s simply exquisite.

Ingredients

  • 8 oz. green asparagus
  • 3 oz. butter
  • 9 oz. salmon, boneless fillets, in pieces
  • salt and pepper 

Preparation

  1. Rinse and trim the asparagus.
  2. Heat a hearty dollop of butter in a frying pan where you can fit both the fish and vegetables.
  3. Fry the asparagus over medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Gather everything in one half of the frying pan.
  4. If necessary, add more butter and fry the salmon pieces for a couple of minutes on each side. Stir the asparagus now and then. Lower the heat towards the end.
  5. Season the salmon and serve with the remaining butter.

NOTE: This keto dish can be prepared with other low-carb vegetables such as zucchini, cauliflower, broccoli, or spinach. Feel free to use your favorite seasonings to give this dish more flavor.

Keto Vanilla Berry Mug Cake

This single-serve keto mug cake uses only 1 minute to prepare. It is filled with healthy fats and fiber. Plus, the fruit has antioxidants that your body requires to fight those free radicals.

Ingredients 

  • 1 tbsp (1 tbsp) butter melted
  • 2 tbsp (2 tbsp) cream cheese full fat
  • 2 tbsp (2 tbsp) coconut flour
  • 1 tbsp (1 tbsp) granulated sweetener of choice or more to taste
  • 1 tsp (1 tsp) vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp (0.25 tsp) baking powder
  • 1 (1 ) egg medium
  • 6 (6 ) frozen raspberries 

Preparation

  1. Place the butter and cream cheese in your chosen mug. Microwave on HIGH for 20 seconds.
  2. Add the coconut flour, sweetener, vanilla, and baking powder. Mix well. Add the egg. Mix again
  3. Scrape down the sides of the mug, then press in 6 frozen raspberries into the cake batter.
  4. Microwave on HIGH for one minute and twenty seconds.

NOTES:

  • You can lower the total carbs further by eliminating the raspberries (1.5 total carbs) to make a simple keto vanilla mug cake.
  • Adjust the microwave cooking times according to the power of your microwave. Some microwaves are pretty powerful and only need a minute, but most standard microwaves may require the 1:20 as stated in the recipe.
  • No microwave? No problem. Simply bake at 180C/350F in a cupcake case or muffin tray for 12 minutes. 

Keto Meat Subs

These are the EASIEST keto sandwiches you’ll ever create.

Ingredients 

  • 9 oz (250 g) Italian style ham
  • 4 1/2 oz. (125 g) prosciutto
  • 5 1/2 oz (150 g) salami soppressata
  • 5 1/2 oz (150 g) genoa salami
  • 2 avocados (12 oz/340 g), peeled, pit removed, and sliced
  • 4 green onions, cut in half
  • 2 leaves of iceberg lettuce or kale
  • 8 toothpicks, optional 

Sub Sauce 

  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) NOW Foods Elyndale Organics Avocado Oil, MCT Oil, Liquid Coconut Oil, or Canola Oil
  • 4 teaspoons juice from banana peppers
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon grey sea salt
  • pinch ground black pepper 

Preparation

  1. Place a slice of ham on a clean plate or cutting board. Layer a piece of prosciutto, followed by three or four pieces of salami, layering like a pyramid or making a square shape with the layers.
  2. Add a couple of slices of avocado, followed by a piece of green onion and an iceberg to the far side of the meat stack.
  3. Roll the ingredients up like a California roll. Secure with a toothpick. Repeat with remaining meat and filling.
  4. Afterward, combine all sub sauce ingredients in a medium-sized bowl and serve alongside the low-carb sandwich.

Note: If you don’t want to make the sub sauce, no worries. You could add a scoop or two of bacon mayonnaise to the wraps before you add the filling.

Double Chocolate Chaffles

Chaffles are some of the most amazing creations for keto recipes. They are fantastic cheese waffles and super versatile.

These double chocolate chaffles taste like dessert! You make them right on your waffle maker in a matter of just minutes.

Ingredients 

  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup pre-shredded/grated mozzarella
  • 1 tbsp granulated sweetener of choice or more to your taste
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp almond flour
  • 1 tbsp sugar-free chocolate chips or cacao nibs
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder unsweetened
  • 1 tsp heavy or double cream 

Preparation

  1. Combine the ingredients for your chosen flavor in a bowl.
  2. Preheat your waffle maker. When it is hot, spray with olive oil and pour half the batter into the mini-waffle maker (or the entire batter into a massive waffle maker).
  3. Cook for 2-4 minutes, then remove and repeat. You should be able to make two mini-chaffles per recipe or one large chaffle.
  4. Top, serve, and enjoy.

Keto Shrimp Scampi

The traditional shrimp scampi recipes include lots of fettuccine pasta. Not low-carb friendly at all.

This quick keto version uses a base on spinach instead. It only takes 15 minutes to get to your plate. Choose peeled shrimp to make it even quicker!

Ingredients 

  • 40 large raw shrimp
  • 1/2 onion
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp heavy cream
  • 1 tbsp parmesan
  • 4 handfuls spinach 

Preparation

  1. To start, place your shrimp in a bowl of cold water and let them defrost. If the shrimp are not peeled, wait until they thaw and peel their shells off.
  2. While you’re waiting for the shrimp to defrost, chop up some onions into small pieces.
  3. Pour olive oil into a pan and cook your shrimp for about 2 minutes or until they are all pink. We’re not cooking the shrimp all the way through. Take the shrimp off the pan and onto a plate to rest.
  4. Then on the same hot pan, cook your onions until translucent. Add some salt to encourage all the ingredients to let their juices out! Then squeeze the garlic and let it cook for about another minute.
  5. Add your butter, cream, and parmesan, and stir until you have a combined sauce. Let this cook for about 2 minutes to let some moisture out and let the whole sauce thicken a bit.
  6. Now add the shrimp back into the pan and stir very well. Let all the sides of the shrimp soak up the delicious sauce. Cook this all together for no longer than 2-3 minutes. Overcooked shrimp are dry, rubbery, and hard to chew.
  7. When the shrimp are done, take them off and let them relax. On the same pan yet again, cook all your spinach slightly. Don’t let them shrink and get too soggy. The closer to raw, the more vitamins and minerals are spared.
  8. Now, combine the spinach and the scrimp to create one tasty, quick dinner! Enjoy!

Keto Muffins

When you are craving bread or muffins, make these keto muffins in just a minute. They come out pretty fluffy and taste just like carby muffins.

Ingredients

  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp coconut flour or more depending on the brand used
  • pinch baking powder
  • pinch salt

Preparation

  1. Grease a ramekin dish (or huge coffee mug) with coconut oil or butter.
  2. Mix all the ingredients with a fork to ensure it is lump-free.
  3. Cook the 1-minute keto muffin in the microwave on HIGH for 45 seconds – 1 minute. Alternatively, they can be baked in an oven, at 200C/400F for 12 minutes
  4. Cut in half and serve

Keto Chicken and Cabbage Plate

Do you want to know the secret to super-fast keto meals?

Rotisserie chicken!

It is the secret weapon for many lazy (or very busy) keto cooks. Just check at the deli that they don’t add any sauces to the chicken before cooking in the rotisserie.

This Keto chicken and cabbage plate recipe uses rotisserie chicken – but you can use leftover chicken too.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb of rotisserie chicken
  • 7 oz. fresh green cabbage
  • ½ red onion
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • salt and pepper

Preparation

  1. Shred the cabbage using a sharp knife or a mandolin and place it on a plate.
  2. Slice the onion thinly and add it to the plate, together with the rotisserie chicken and a hearty dollop of mayonnaise.
  3. Drizzle olive oil over the cabbage and add some salt and pepper to taste.

NOTE: For this dish, we’ve used rotisserie chicken, but you can use any leftover chicken.

You can also pan-fry a piece or two of raw chicken if you wish. Just make sure it’s fully cooked through (internal temperature of 165°F) before serving.

Sugar-Free Nutella

You can have that delicious hazelnut spread on the keto diet— just make it with clean ingredients and no sugar. This sugar-free Nutella tastes fantastic on your favorite chaffle!

Ingredients

  • 150 g (1 1/4 cups) walnut halves
  • 1 tsp (1 tsp) vanilla
  • 4 tbsp (4 tbsp) cocoa unsweetened
  • 4 tbsp (4 tbsp) coconut oil
  • 4 tbsp (4 tbsp) granulated sweetener of choice or more, to your taste

Preparation

  1. Place all the ingredients in your mini food processor that attaches to your stick blender or small blender with sharp blades.
  2. Blitz until smooth. This will probably take a minute or two. The coconut oil doesn’t even need melting as it softens with the warmth of the blades rotating.
  3. Store in the fridge if you would like it to be a firm spread in the summer or store in an airtight container in the winter.

NOTE: Please taste the chocolate spread and adjust to your liking. Even though cocoa brands have similar carb values, their strength of flavor differs dramatically.

Easy Pork Stir Fry Recipe

Stir-Fries are one of the best meals for lazy cooks – it has your meat, fat, and veggies all cooked in one pan. And you can even buy the meat and the veggies pre-cut into strips, ready to drop into the pan.

Even for picky eaters, this Easy Pork Stir Fry Recipe is bound to be a hit!

Ingredients 

  • 3/4 pound pork loin, cut into thin strips
  • 2 tablespoons avocado or olive oil (divided)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 12 ounces broccoli florets
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
  • 1 bunch green onion (scallions), cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons Tamari soy sauce (or coconut aminos)
  • 1 tablespoon extra dry sherry
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons low carb sugar (or sugar or coconut sugar)
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch (or arrowroot)
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil

Optional Ingredients

  • red pepper flakes
  • sesame seeds 

Preparation

  1. Mince a clove of garlic. Cut a 1-inch piece of ginger and peel the thin skin with a spoon. Mince the ginger and add it to the garlic. Cut the pork loin into thin strips and mix with 1 tbsp. oil and the ginger and garlic.
  2. Cut the red bell pepper into strips and place into the bottom of a medium bowl. Cut the green onions (scallions) into 2-inch pieces, including some of the green stems, and add them to the bowl. Cut the broccoli florets into large bite-sized pieces, layering them on top. 
  3. Add the sweetener and cornstarch (arrowroot) to a small bowl and mix together. Stir in the Tamari soy sauce, dry sherry, and sesame oil.
  4. Place the wok over high heat. It’s ready when a drop of water skips across the surface. Add one tablespoon of oil and quickly tilt the wok to coat all surfaces. Pour out the remaining oil. Place the wok back onto the heat and add the pork to the pan’s sides and bottom. Leave the pork undisturbed until it has cooked halfway through; the bottom half will turn white. Stir the pork and cook until it is almost cooked through. Remove from the pan to the serving bowl. 
  5. Dump the bowl of vegetables into the wok with the broccoli at the bottom. Cover with a lid and cook for 1 minute. Stir the vegetables and add the pork and any juices back to the pan. Stir the pork and vegetables together. Stir the stir fry sauce and pour it over the pork and vegetables. Push the pork stir fry to the sides and let the sauce boil at the bottom of the wok, occasionally stirring for several seconds until the sauce thickens. 
  6. If you would like the sauce a little thicker, remove the stir-fried pork and vegetables to the serving bowl and let the sauce cook a little longer. Pour the sauce over the stir fry when it reaches your desired level of thickness. Serve.

Keto Chicken Salad

Break out of the monotony of salads. Here are three completely different ways to eat the same zesty keto chicken salad. It’s a fun way to shake up your meal prep routine!

You don’t even need to cook the chicken, just pick up a hot rotisserie chicken from the grocery store, and voila! Dinner will be an assembly line.

Ingredients 

  • 450 g (1 lb) cooked chicken chopped or shredded
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt unsweetened natural
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped cucumber
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh herbs parsley, basil, etc
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup cubed avocado optional
  • 1 tbsp feta cheese optional to garnish 

Preparation

  1. To bake your chicken, place the chicken in a baking pan and drizzle it with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Bake the chicken at 220C/425F for 10-15 minutes or until done. Alternatively, grill, broil, barbecue, or buy a rotisserie chicken.
  2. Chop your cooked chicken and vegetables. Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. Garnish and serve as lettuce wraps, with FatHead crackers, or with mozzarella dough flatbread. Store leftover chicken salad in the refrigerator.

Final Thoughts

Even if lazy keto seems fascinating, it is so much healthier to eat whole foods that take a little longer to cook at home.

Quit relying on the sweet keto snacks and desserts. Base your meals on whole foods made at home.

These recipes are the best idea to transition to clean keto when you don’t enjoy cooking. That’s because recipes don’t require much of your time.

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Keto Facts Keto Nutrition Keto Reviews

The Truth Behind Lazy Keto

Lazy Keto is a popular adaptation of the Ketogenic diet. It’s often used for weight loss, and, as the name implies, it’s designed to be easy to understand.

The standard ketogenic diet requires calculating your caloric consumption and macros carefully. Doing so ensures that you achieve ketosis, a metabolic state in which your body burns fat as an energy source.

However, lazy Keto is far less complicated, as you only have to pay attention to your carb consumption.

In this post, we will walk you through the pros and cons of lazy Keto and how you can do it right.

What is Lazy Keto?

Lazy Keto is a less limiting version of the usual high-fat, very-low-carb ketogenic diet.

The ketogenic diet began in the 1920s as a medical approach to treating epilepsy. Recently, modifications of this diet, including lazy Keto, have become mainstream.

Traditional keto diets demand you to track your macronutrient consumption closely. You also need to follow a strict eating pattern that involves low carb, high fat, and moderate protein.

The aim is to induce ketosis, a metabolic state in which your body burns fat as its primary fuel source.

Like most adaptations of the ketogenic diet, lazy Keto restricts your carb consumption. Typically, carbs are limited to about 5–10% of your total daily calories — or about 20–50 grams per day for most people.

However, you don’t have to bother about tracking calories, protein, or fat on lazy Keto.

Health Benefits of Lazy Keto

The Ketogenic diet, in general, is believed to offer health benefits. However, there aren’t many studies about lazy Keto.

For example, various studies suggest that keto diets may support weight loss, potentially even more so than low-fat diets.

However, this effect is not unusual for keto diets. Investigations show that any diet that decreases calorie intake and is followed long term will likely begin to lose weight over time.

Even though lazy Keto doesn’t have any caloric limitations, studies suggest that this can help overcome food cravings. This may make it easier to lessen your calorie consumption without feeling hungry.

Additionally, it is believed that the keto diet can help develop blood sugar control for people with Type 2 diabetes. It also reduces the risk of heart disease.

However, conclusions are mixed, and the lazy keto diet has not been explicitly studied.

Keep in mind that the beneficial effects of keto diets are often attributed to being in ketosis. And this is achieved by measuring the level of ketones in the body.

The caveat is that people who do lazy ketone don’t know if they’re in ketosis. That’s because tracking caloric consumptions, macros, and measuring ketones are not required.

The Drawbacks

Like the regular keto diet, lazy Keto may steer dieters to experience the keto flu when transitioning to a keto diet. This involves symptoms of nausea, headache, fatigue, constipation, and dizziness.

Lazy Keto also has some other pitfalls worth noting.

You may not enter ketosis

Lazy Keto is encouraging to many because it’s less restrictive and easier to grasp than the traditional ketogenic diet.

The purpose of lazy Keto is to produce a metabolic state called ketosis, in which your body mainly burns fat for fuel. Researchers connect many of the potential health advantages of ketogenic diets to this metabolic state.

However, while on this simplified version of the keto diet, you may not reach a ketosis state, which has numerous signs and symptoms.

To enter ketosis, you have to critically restrict your carb and fat consumption and monitor your protein intake. That’s because your body can turn protein into glucose — a carbohydrate — in a process termed gluconeogenesis.

Consuming too much protein on lazy Keto could prevent ketosis altogether.

Calories and diet quality still matter

Focusing on your carb intake, as you would on lazy Keto, overlooks the importance of adequate calorie intake and diet quality.

A well-balanced diet that incorporates a wide variety of foods can supply your body with all the nutrients it needs for overall health.

Unfortunately, like the regular keto diet, lazy Keto restricts several nutrient-rich food groups. This includes starchy vegetables, grains, fruits, and legumes. This may make it hard to gain essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber.

Also, it can be challenging to satisfy all your nutrient requirements when you reduce your calorie consumption. Therefore, it’s imperative to focus on consuming nutrient-rich food instead of decreasing your carb intake.

Lack of research behind long-term results

No studies have been led on lazy Keto specifically. Long-term investigations on similar diets are also insufficient.

There are matters that lazy Keto — and high-fat diets in general — may wreck heart health over time, despite the weight loss they may produce.

One analysis of 19 studies linked low-carb, high-fat diets with balanced weight-loss diets. It discovered they had related weight loss benefits and effectively decreased risk factors for heart disease after 1–2 years.

Another study found that low-carb, high-fat diets ended in more significant weight loss than low-fat diets in the long-term.

However, the researchers also discovered that high-fat diets could lead to higher cholesterol levels. This can increase your risk of heart disease.

That said, the nature of the fat you eat on a high-fat diet may create a big difference. If you’re on a Keto diet, it would be best to lean on fatty fish, nuts, and olive oil for fat sources. Doing so decreases the risk of heart disease.

Also, the long-term results of following ketogenic diets are unknown due to a shortage of long-term studies. It’s unclear if keto diets are harmless or helpful to follow over the years or decades.

Food to Eat on Lazy Keto

What can you eat on lazy Keto? In a nutshell, the lazy keto diet is a very low-carb diet. It also involves foods like meat, fish, eggs, healthy oils, and non-starchy vegetables that should give the bulk of your calories. 

Here’s a more comprehensive list of low-carb keto foods to include:

  • Performance fats like MCT oil, coconut oil, olive oil, grass-fed butter, ghee, avocado, and fats are found naturally in meat, eggs, and fish.
  • Quality protein sources, such as poultry and pastured eggs, wild-caught fish, grass-fed meat, and full-fat cheeses.
  • Non-starchy, low-carb vegetables, such as leafy greens, cruciferous veggies like broccoli or cauliflower, mushrooms, asparagus, artichokes, bell peppers, herbs, etc.
  • Fresh or dried herbs and spices.
  • Unsweetened keto drinks, including low-sugar green juices, water, seltzer, coffee, tea, or herbal tea.
  • Monk fruit or stevia extract instead of sugar to induce cravings for sweetness.

What’s Not to Eat on Lazy Keto?

  • Grains and products made with wheat/grain flours
  • Most fruit (berries can be eaten in smaller quantities)
  • Legumes or beans
  • Added sugar of all kind
  • All desserts
  • Sweetened dairy products
  • Soda, juices, and other sweetened drinks
  • Most starchy vegetables like beets, potatoes, and butternut squash.

Keep in mind that lazy Keto doesn’t distinguish between healthy, unprocessed fats and those that are inflammatory. To obtain the most benefits from the diet, refrain from highly-refined vegetable oils, pork rinds, sausage, bacon, and processed cheeses.

Lazo Keto Meal Plan

Now that you identify which foods to incorporate in lazy keto meals, let’s take a look at an example lazy keto diet meal plan:

  • Breakfast: Eggs cooked in oil or butter with sautéed veggies and sliced avocado. Another alternative is skipping breakfast altogether and doing intermittent fasting on Keto.
  • Lunch: Grass-fed burger with aged cheddar cheese, served over salad with dressing and pickled veggies.
  • Dinner: Wild-caught salmon, steak, or chicken cooked in butter or oil, served with sautéed veggies cooked in more butter/oil.
  • Keto snacks (optional): Deviled eggs with avocado, keto smoothies, a handful of nuts, or “keto fat bombs.”

Although there’s no need to track your food consumption, here are some broad tips to keep in mind to make sure you’re sticking to the correct keto macros:

  • Incorporate at least 1-2 servings of healthy fats with every meal.
  • Aim to consume small amounts of healthy protein sources throughout the day.
  • Eat numerous servings of veggies per day, ideally incorporating them with all meals.
  • Read ingredient labels thoroughly. This way, you avoid added sugar and carbs, plus difficult-to-pronounce chemical ingredients.
  • Consider using a keto supplement, such as exogenous ketones in the form of Keto FIRE, to help support you in getting into ketosis. Exogenous ketones, MCTs (medium-chain triglyceride fats), and adaptogens can all work together to boost your energy and athletic performance. It also supports healthy metabolism and promotes healthy weight management while on a keto diet.

Other Considerations

While it’s not indeed a “risk,” trying the lazy keto diet may make it more challenging to get into ketosis. Thus, it can be a challenge to acquire all the benefits of the traditional ketogenic diet. 

For example, if you aren’t consuming enough fat or consuming too much protein, your body may strive to make ketones. And we know that these are responsible for the many benefits of high-fat diets.

If you’re following lazy Keto and notice that you’re not achieving a healthy weight or you feel sluggish, then you have two options:

  1. Try a stricter, standard keto diet instead. This can help you get into ketosis, burn fat for energy, and experience many other benefits linked with ketone production.
  2. End following a low-carb diet altogether, and instead concentrate on enhancing the quality of diet overall (i.e., eat more whole foods, cut out processed foods, watch serving sizes, etc.).

Should You Try It?

Lazy Keto may be an alternative for those looking for a quick, short-term weight loss solution.

However, keto diets’ long-term results — particularly lazy Keto — are currently unclear due to a shortage of research.

Given that the diet limits many healthy foods, it may be challenging to get all the nutrients you need. This could lead to deficiencies and poor health over time.

Though studies advise keto diets may aid blood sugar control, those with type 2 diabetes should address lazy Keto with caution. 

Reducing your carb consumption can lead to severely low blood sugar levels if your medications aren’t adjusted.

Overall, make sure to discuss a healthcare provider, such as a registered dietitian, before trying lazy Keto. They can help you achieve the diet safely and effectively and guarantee that you meet all your nutrient needs.

Final Thoughts

A lazy keto is an appealing choice for those who find the traditional keto diet too limiting. While it limits carbs, there are no rules regarding your consumption of calories, protein, or fat.

Overall, lazy Keto may offer the same possible benefits as the traditional keto diet, at least in the short term. These involve decreased appetite, quick weight loss, and healthier blood sugar control in those with type 2 diabetes.

Nonetheless, there are downsides to neglecting your consumption of calories, fat, and protein.

For one, you may not obtain the metabolic state of ketosis, to which many of the traditional keto diet’s benefits are associated. Also, lazy Keto has not been well analyzed and ignores the importance of overall diet quality.

Experts agree that if you’re going to do the lazy keto diet, it’s crucial you also highlight the quality of the food you eat. Still, it could help you shift to the traditional diet.

Categories
Keto Facts Keto Nutrition Keto Reviews

The Best Keto and Low-Carb Chicken Recipes

Chicken is an excellent protein source, and it’s a delicious choice when you’re on a low-carb or keto diet. It’s versatile and often preferred by eaters of all ages.

The chicken, as is, can be too meaty to be keto (especially chicken breast without skin). But with extra fat and some vegetables, you’re able to make fantastic ketogenic meals.

When you purchase chicken, it’s often a better deal to buy a whole chicken and divide it into pieces. Chicken breast is the leanest part, but it’s also the most expensive. Hence, we recommend that you opt for thighs if you’re strapped for a budget.

They often come more affordable, have more natural fat, and, therefore, more flavor.

Meanwhile, did you know that baked chicken skin is an excellent crispy snack? So, if you have some leftover chicken skin, there’s no need to toss it away. 

If you are looking for more keto-friendly chicken recipe ideas, check out our list below:

Oven-baked paprika chicken with rutabaga

So tasty and so versatile! This one-pot dish is amazingly delicious. It boasts juicy chicken snuggled into hearty chunks of rutabaga with the colorful glow of paprika.

Mind you; the rutabaga is as colorful as it is modest in carbs. Thus, this can be your “go-to” weeknight dish.

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs chicken thighs (bone-in with skin) or chicken drumsticks
  • 2 lbs rutabaga or celery root, peeled and cut into 2″ (5 cm) pieces
  • 1 tbsp paprika powder
  • salt and pepper
  • ¼ cup olive oil
For Garlic and paprika mayo
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp paprika powder
  • salt and pepper, to taste 

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Place the chicken and the rutabaga in a baking dish. Season with salt, pepper, and paprika powder. Drizzle with olive oil and mix well.
  3. Bake in the oven until the chicken is well done, about 40 minutes. Lower the heat towards the end of the chicken or rutabaga is getting too golden brown.
  4. Mix the mayonnaise with seasoning and serve together with the roasted chicken and rutabaga.

Keto chicken wings with creamy broccoli

This is an easy-to-make crowd pleaser! These delicate chicken wings hit the spot and served with creamy broccoli; they make for a great weeknight dinner.

Ingredients 

Baked chicken wings
  • ½ orange, juice, and zest
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 3 lbs chicken wings
Creamy broccoli
  • 1½ lbs broccoli
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh dill
  • salt and pepper, to taste 

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Mix juice and zest from the orange with oil and spices in a small bowl. Place the chicken wings in a plastic bag and pour in the marinade.
  3. Give the bag a good shake to cover the wings thoroughly. Put aside to marinate for at least 5 minutes but preferably more.
  4. Place the wings in one layer in a greased baking dish or on a broiler rack for extra crispiness.
  5. Bake on middle rack in the oven for about 45 minutes or until the wings are golden brown and thoroughly cooked.
  6. In the meantime, divide the broccoli into small florets and parboil in salted water for a couple of minutes. They’re only supposed to soften a bit but not lose their shape or color.
  7. Strain the broccoli and let some of the steam evaporate before adding the remaining ingredients. Serve the broccoli with the baked wings.

Indian keto chicken korma

Chicken korma is a typical Indian dish with dozens of different variations. However, they all have one thing in common: they are all oh so abundant of flavor, and we want them now!

Here is a keto version of this great Indian dish made with chicken and cooked in creamy onion gravy with spices’ arsenal.

Ingredients

  • 4 tbsp ghee
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 oz. Greek yogurt
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1-star anise
  • 3 green cardamom pods
  • 8 whole black peppercorns
  • 1½ lbs chicken drumsticks
  • 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp Kashmiri red chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground coriander seed
  • ½ tsp garam masala seasoning
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • salt, to taste
  • fresh cilantro, for garnish 

Preparation

  1. Heat the ghee in a wok or non-stick saucepan and deep-fry the onions on low-medium heat until they get a nice golden brown color.
  2. Remove the fried onions from the pan. Mix yogurt with the onions in a blender to get a creamy paste.
  3. Reheat the ghee in the saucepan. Once it gets hot, add cloves, bay leaf, cinnamon stick, star anise, green cardamom pods, and black peppercorns. Fry for 30 seconds or until they start to sizzle.
  4. Add the chicken drumsticks. Season thoroughly with salt. Add the ginger-garlic paste, combine well and fry for about 2 minutes.
  5. Add turmeric, red chili powder, coriander powder, garam masala, and cumin powder. Combine well and fry for two more minutes.
  6. Add the fried onion yogurt paste, combine well. Add some water. You can use the water to rinse out the blender, so don’t waste any paste. Mix well.
  7. Cover and cook for 10-15 minutes or until the chicken is thoroughly cooked and tender.
  8. Garnish with fresh cilantro.

Keto chicken casserole

Keto and casseroles go hand in hand, particularly when it comes to this tempting chicken recipe that will make your entire family swoon. The cream sauce is hearty, cheesy, and packed with yummy pesto. Your oven will feel privileged to bake this tasty goodness for you over and over again.

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup heavy whipping cream or sour cream
  • ½ cup cream cheese
  • 3 tbsp green pesto
  • ½ lemon, the juice
  • salt and pepper
  • 1½ oz. butter
  • 2 lbs skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 9 oz. leeks, finely chopped
  • 4 oz. cherry tomatoes halved
  • 1 lb cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 2 cups shredded cheese 

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Mix cream and cream cheese with pesto and lemon juice. Salt and pepper to taste.
  3. In a large pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the chicken, season with salt and pepper, and fry until they turn a nice golden brown.
  4. Place the chicken in a greased 9 x 13 inch (23 x 33 cm) baking dish, and pour in the cream mixture.
  5. Top chicken with leek, tomatoes, and cauliflower.
  6. Sprinkle cheese on top and place the pan in the middle rack to bake for at least 30 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked.

NOTE: If the casserole is at risk of burning before it’s done, cover it with a piece of aluminum foil, lower the heat and let cook for a little longer.

Keto fajita chicken casserole

Onions and peppers. Chicken and cheese. All made possible with Tex-Mex flavors. Our quick and straightforward keto fajita casserole is a no-brainer for busy weeknights. Because FAJITAS.. but easier and cheesier.

Ingredients

  • 1¼ lbs cooked chicken
  • 7 oz. cream cheese
  • 1⁄3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 2 tbsp Tex-Mex seasoning
  • 2 cups shredded cheese
  • salt and pepper
Serving
  • 5 oz. lettuce
  • 4 tbsp olive oil 

Preparation

  1. Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Shred the cooked chicken into bite-sized pieces. Chop the onions and the peppers.
  3. Mix everything except for a third of the shredded cheese in a greased baking dish.
  4. Add the remaining cheese on top. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
  5. Serve with leafy greens dressed in olive oil.

Low-carb imperial rice

Arroz Imperial is a Cuban casserole. It is created by layering yellow rice, chicken fricassee, mayonnaise, and cheese. And this labor-intensive dish got a low-carb and straightforward makeover.

Ingredients

Chicken
  • 2 cups cooked chicken, shredded
  • ¼ cup tomato sauce or pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp fine salt
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
Mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise (preferably with avocado oil)
Cauliflower rice
  • 8 oz. riced cauliflower
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp fine salt
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
Cashew cheese
  • 2 oz. soaked raw cashew nuts
  • 1 tsp granulated garlic
  • ¼ tsp fine salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • ¼ cup avocado oil 

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Mix the shredded chicken with the tomato or pumpkin puree and seasonings and set aside.
  3. Mix the cauliflower rice with turmeric, salt, and pepper, and set aside.
  4. Make the cheese. Combine all of the cashew cheese ingredients in the bowl of your food processor and blend until smooth.
  5. To assemble the casserole, use a 6 x 6 inch (15 x 15 cm) glass casserole dish. Spoon half of the cauliflower rice into it and flatten it down to the bottom of the dish. Spread two tablespoons of mayo over the cauliflower rice.
  6. Add half of the chicken over the mayo and spread it out evenly.
  7. Spoon half of the cashew cheese over the chicken evenly. Repeat again, rice, mayo, chicken, cheese.
  8. Place the casserole in the oven and bake for 30 minutes until the top is golden and browned along the edges.

Keto no-noodle chicken soup

Created with healing bone broth, this keto chicken no-noodle soup with healthy cabbage is warm and comforting. You can have this during the cold weather or when you’re nursing a cold.

Ingredient

  • 4 oz. butter
  • 2 tbsp dried minced onion
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 6 oz. mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 8 cups chicken broth
  • 2 oz. carrots, sliced
  • 2 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • 1½ rotisserie chicken*, shredded
  • 5 oz. green cabbage, cut into strips 

Preparation

  1. Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat.
  2. Add dried onion, chopped celery, sliced mushrooms, and garlic into the pot and cook for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add broth, sliced carrot, parsley, salt, and pepper. Simmer until vegetables are tender.
  4. Add cooked chicken and cabbage. Simmer for an additional 8-12 minutes until the cabbage “noodles” is tender.

Keto Indian butter chicken

Butter chicken is one of our favorite Indian dishes, and we know we’re not the only ones! We invite you to try the keto version of this fabulous butter chicken, served with oven-roasted cauliflower.

Ingredients 

Indian butter chicken
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 tbsp fresh ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp garam masala seasoning
  • ½ tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¾ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 lbs boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 oz. butter or ghee
  • ½ cup fresh cilantro, for serving (optional)
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream, for serving (optional)
Oven-roasted cauliflower
  • 1 lb cauliflower, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tbsp coriander seed
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 oz. butter 

Preparation

Indian butter chicken
  1. Add tomato, onion, ginger, garlic, tomato paste, and spices in a food processor. Mix until smooth. Add the cream and mix for a couple of seconds.
  2. Marinate the chicken in the mixture for at least 20 minutes, but preferably more, in the refrigerator.
  3. Heat a third of the butter over medium-high heat in a large frying pan. Remove the chicken from the marinade (reserve the marinade), and fry in the butter for 5 minutes.
  4. Pour the marinade over the chicken and add the rest of the butter. Let simmer over medium heat for 15 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked. Salt to taste.
  5. Garnish with fresh cilantro and drizzle with a splash of cream.
Oven-roasted cauliflower
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Spread the cauliflower out into an even layer in a large sheet pan.
  3. Season with spices and butter. Bake for 15 minutes.

Chicken and zucchini curry soup

The warm and delightful curry scent that fills the house when you make this bright, fresh low-carb soup is overwhelming. Tender chicken and crispy zucchini are the favorites of this coconut-infused flavor wonder!

Ingredients 

  • 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 white onions, finely chopped
  • ¾ cup of coconut milk
  • 2 cups of water
  • 3 tbsp green curry paste
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley or fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • ¾ lb chicken breasts (without skin), cut into small pieces
  • 11 oz. zucchini, thinly sliced
  • salt and ground black pepper 

Preparation

  1. Heat half of the olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and onions and cook over low heat, stirring frequently. Do not let the onion turn brown.
  2. Add the coconut milk, water, the curry paste, and the parsley. Simmer for a few minutes.
  3. Mix well, then add the chicken and simmer until the chicken is cooked through.
  4. While the soup is cooking, heat the rest of the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the zucchini and cook until just tender, about 5 to 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Right before serving, add the zucchini to the soup. Enjoy!

Keto Caesar salad

A true keto salad classic: moist chicken and crispy bacon are served on a bed of crunchy Romaine lettuce. In our version, we don’t sacrifice the dressing or the parmesan cheese!

Ingredients 

Dressing
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • ½ lemon, zest, and juice
  • ¼ cup grated, shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped filets of anchovies
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed or finely chopped
  • salt and pepper
Salad
  • 12 oz. chicken breasts, bone-in with skin
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 oz. bacon
  • 7 oz. Romaine lettuce, chopped
  • ½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese 

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
  2. Mix the ingredients for the dressing with a whisk or an immersion blender. Set aside in the refrigerator.
  3. Place the chicken breasts in a greased baking dish. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and drizzle olive oil or melted butter on top.
  4. Bake the chicken in the oven for about 20 minutes or until fully cooked through. You can also cook the chicken on the stovetop if you prefer.
  5. Fry the bacon until crisp. Place lettuce as a base on two plates. Top with sliced chicken and the crispy, crumbled bacon.
  6. Finish with a generous dollop of dressing and a good grating of parmesan cheese.

Final Thoughts

The keto diet may be all about the fat, but that doesn’t mean that protein doesn’t play an important role.

Too much of it, and you’re no longer in ketosis. Too little, and you risk shedding muscle mass.

And what’s one of the most common, accessible, and easy-to-cook proteins available? Chicken, of course.

So while you’re busy cooking everything in butter, don’t forget that 10 to 35 percent of your calorie consumption should be coming from a protein source.

Categories
Keto Facts Keto Reviews

Keto Kitchen Must-Haves

Whether you are brand new to a ketogenic diet or a pro, you are likely spending some valuable time in your kitchen. Even though the Keto diet has become popular recently, there are not many options available in-store.

In a nutshell, the ketogenic diet is a high-fat, moderate-protein, low-carb diet. This means you limit your carb consumption, so your body reaches a state of ketosis.

At ketosis, you’ll begin to burn your stored body fats as an energy source. This leads to a quicker weight loss.

Meaning, you can still have a slice of cheese, meat, and healthy fats found in nuts, seeds, and avocados. But it can be tricky to incorporate keto-friendly foods and keep track of your meal plans.

If you aren’t used to preparing most meals at home, then the Keto diet can be overwhelming and quite discouraging to newbies. As you spend more time in the kitchen, you may discover that there will be some kitchen tools that will make your life easier.

That said, we have created a list of the kitchen must-haves that you can use when cooking excellent keto meals:

Keto Cookbook

New to the keto diet? Make it easy on yourself with this top-rated cookbook, filled with easy-to-understand recipes, tips, and tricks.

Food Scale

Sure, you don’t have to measure all your food to be successful—but the more accurate you are, the better your results will be.

Even if you aren’t a die-hard food tracker, it would be best to practice weighing out your portions. This is to get an idea of what an actual serving looks like.

You would want to use your kitchen scales pretty much every day to measure our ingredients when following a recipe. They are also great for keeping an eye on your macros if you want to be more precise with the amounts of each food we are eating.

Ensure yours lets you tare, so you can use the same bowl and continue to add various ingredients easily. It is also excellent if they can shift between grams and ounces so you can use them for recipes from the US or Australia/UK.

Measuring Cups and Spoons

Excellent for keto baking or anytime you need to measure ingredients for a recipe. It is most suitable to measure dry ingredients in measuring cups rather than measuring jugs.

On that note, things like flour and sugar aren’t measured by weight, so it’s essential to have all the necessary tools.

Again, perfect for keto baking or following recipes and also for tracking your food consumption. You can use it daily, mainly when you’re making your coffee, so you know how much cream should be adding.

Measuring Jugs

Better if you purchase a set of 3 of these; a 4 cup jug, a 2 cup jug, and a 1 cup jug, and we would use most of them daily. Excellent for measuring liquids or heating things in the microwave, as they are heat-proof.

Plastic Containers

You’ll certainly love having a range of sizes of these containers available for any meal prep and also for your packed lunches for work. They can go in the freezer and the oven (without the lids), so they are very versatile.

When making an additional cheesy cauliflower baked in a pyrex dish, for instance, it would be best to pop the lid on and put it in the freezer before baking it. Then at night, when you have less time or can’t be bothered cooking, you can grab it out of the freezer, take the lid off, and pop it straight in the oven.

But it still recommended storing and heating your food in a glass over plastic due to the potential chemical exposure.

Glass Jars

You’ll love having glass jars to store on your pantry items, such as nuts and baking ingredients like nut flours. It will keep your pantry tidy, your ingredients fresh, and everything is easy to see and access.

You would also use glass jars to store your homemade condiments and salad dressings in the fridge. It is advisable to keep everything in a glass over plastic due to the potential chemical exposure.

Glass jars are excellent for stocking your ketogenic diet staples. Some examples are homemade mayo, bone broth, chia pudding, nut milk, and cold brew coffee.

Silicone Muffin Molds

These muffin molds are excellent for keto baking, as quite often, things can stick to traditional muffin pans or paper cases. You can use them for baking your breakfast muffins and pecan cheesecake muffins, and they always come out perfectly.

They are also great for making individual cheesecakes, like the white chocolate ones. You can also use the smaller silicon molds to make fat bombs, collagen cups, and chocolate treats.

We recommend you get a regular “muffin” size mold as well as mini muffin liners. The regular ones are great for making egg cups and keto-friendly cupcakes, while the small ones make excellent molds for fat bombs.

If you are starting on keto, fat bombs are lifesavers. They help you pass through cravings and keep you on track. It is still enjoyable from time to time, and these silicone molds make it super easy to use.

Silicone Baking Mats

These silicone baking mats are incredibly excellent when it comes to things like cheese crisps and fathead pizzas. They are also conveniently handy for baking your favorite keto cookies and low carb pretzels.

Whoopie Pie Pan

Having a whoopie pie pan may seem like a massive waste of space until you realize what a great tool it is! You can create a cloud bread, burger buns, and the all-time favorite Keto McGriddles!

Burger Press

A burger press is ideal if you’re meticulous about your burger patties being uniform in size. You can also use this if you don’t like holding and molding raw meat.

Burgers are your go-to quick meal. You would want to make a bunch ahead of time and keep them in the freezer until it’s ready to eat. 

Spiralizer

We all know noodles are life, but sadly, traditional pasta is a no-no on a keto diet. Luckily spiralized veggies satisfy the void nicely and hold up with most sauces.

Most commonly, spiralizers are used with zucchini, but you can also try it with broccoli stalks and baby eggplant!

Excellent for making zoodles or zughetti at home. It’s good that there are various blades so you can make different thicknesses and shapes of noodles.

You aren’t limited to spiralizing zucchini, either. It is time to get artistic. You can even spiralize capsicums (bell peppers), cucumber, turnips, onions, and cabbage.

You’ll love zoodles combined with beef stroganoff, chorizo chili, basil pesto, or creamy mushroom sauce. In summer, this delicious salad is an excellent side for your family BBQ.

Grater

Grating your cheese is an excellent choice as you can choose the best quality cheese available to grate.

Also, you don’t need to worry about any starch additives that can be found in grated cheese every time you purchase it from the supermarket.

You can also use it to grate zucchini to make into fritters or muffins and use a grater to make cauliflower rice.

Butter Dish

A surely must-have for any butter lover! Life is so much easier if you have a room temperature butter already prepared, rather than cold out of the fridge.

If you are on keto, you are likely eating a LOT of butter – I mean a lot. A butter dish safely stores butter on the counter at room temp, so it’s always soft and spreadable, exactly how butter was made to be.

Depending on what the climate is like where you live, it may not be a choice to have the butter out on your counter year-round. You would want to store your butter in a butter dish in the fridge in summer, so it is easier to locate and less messy than in the foil wrapper.

Food Processor and Blender

If you cook in your kitchen at all, then you’ll need a food processor and blender. You can use them to make cauliflower rice, pancakes, homemade mayo, and of course, protein shakes.

Save time—and counter space—by spending on a powerful gadget that will do everything from fresh salsa and tomato sauce to whipping up smoothies and soups.

Hand Blender

You’ll love the stick blender as it is so versatile. You can use it to level up your bulletproof coffee, and it is much less cleaning up than using a blender.

The bowl attachment is convenient as it is a mini food processor without taking up all the regular food processor’s cupboard space.

You can regularly use the stick blender to make homemade mayo and hollandaise sauce or blend up a soup to make it smooth and creamy. You can also use it with the bowl attachment to chop vegetables or nuts and make basil pesto and your smoky romesco sauce.

It is also useful for making healthy soups, sauces, and elixirs without cleaning your Vitamix.

Milk Frother

Bulletproof coffee is a staple on many keto diets.

Starting your day with a healthy dose of fat (and caffeine, of course) is an excellent way to set yourself up for a productive and focused day if you ask me.

Using a frother transforms your favorite fatty coffee into a latte-like experience without the hefty price tag!

Instant Pot

If there is only one thing I could keep in any of my kitchen appliances, it would be a close call between my instant pot and my dishwasher. This thing can certainly do it all! Hard-boiled eggs, baked goods, bone broth, soups, roasts, CHEESECAKES, and the list would go on.

Slow Cooker

Another one that should be on your wishlist. 

So versatile – it is a slow cooker and a pressure cooker all in one. You can also use it to steam or saute and as a warmer and sterilizer.

When trying to hold on to a particular diet, meal prep is the king. Stick to the classic and pull out the slow cooker for Sunday afternoon cooking sessions.

You can use your slow cooker to make bone broth and in winter to make stews and braises. You would want to use it at least once a week for bone broth and then for other meals on top of that.

It is so easy to throw all the ingredients in and switch it on in the morning and come home to dinner ready!

Opt for a larger slow cooker so you can get a more considerable amount of bone broth for your 24-hour time investment. When you have cooked a small portion of meat in the large slow cooker, please place it in a small heat-proof dish inside the slow cooker bowl so that it won’t dry out.

Cast Iron kit

An excellent skillet for most meat cuts because of how well it holds heat, plus it can seamlessly go from stovetop to oven.

We use heavy-based stainless steel frying pans and saucepans in our house. It is advisable to use skillets and pans with metal handles to quickly go into the oven or under the grill (broiler).

You can season your stainless steel skillets to make them non-stick if you prefer.

The use of cast iron skillets is also prevalent within the ketogenic community. You do need to be cautious while making sure that you season your cast iron pans before use and cleaning them properly. It is also perfect for making your skillet eggs.

Many people are scared of cooking with cast iron – but once you get the hang of it, you will never go back. It’s the most reliable way to sear a steak, it cooks a mean burger, and you can even bake in them!

PRO TIP: Never clean your cast iron with soap! After it has cooled, discard any excess grease or debris, then scrub it with a steel wool pad.

You can also opt to spatter about 2 tbsp of course salt into the pan and scrub with a towel. Once clean, completely dry and wipe the inside with a little oil. 

Casserole Pots

You’ll adore the enamel-lined cast iron casserole pots. And although they are expensive, they will certainly last for a lifetime if you look after them.

Most moms are still using the ones they received as a wedding present. Also, they are just so pretty, and you’ll love to have them out on display in your kitchen.

Casserole pots are perfect for cooking your oven-baked meatballs, chorizo chili, and beef stroganoff.

Bacon Grease Saver

This item should definitely be on your wish list. We used to save any leftover bacon grease from baking our bacon in a small pyrex container.

But having a bacon grease saver with the strainer would be fantastic.

Leftover bacon grease is ideal for use in your cooking for added flavor. More so, when frying up some greens, cabbage, or Brussel sprouts. Also, try frying your eggs with leftover bacon grease.

Grease Splatter Screen

This could be one of your favorite kitchen purchases since you started following a ketogenic diet. This prevents the grease from your skillet from splattering all over your cooktop. Just like your grandma used to own!

Ice-cream Maker

There’s no low carb ice cream you can buy at the supermarket compared to a homemade version. You’ll love this machine as there is no need to store the bowl in a freezer, and it is super easy to use.

You can make your custard mixture with heavy cream or coconut milk and cool it in the fridge. Then pop it into the ice-cream machine for a super sensual treat.

This is ideal as you can use the sweeteners you prefer, and you know exactly what ingredients you are going to use. After all, ice cream usually includes heavy cream, eggs, vanilla, and sukrin sweetener.

Vacuum Sealer

Use to divide up your meat into parts or give your produce extra-long lives in the fridge.

You can accumulate these keto kitchen must-haves over time. So, you don’t have to rush out and buy all these things. What’s important is that you have an idea of things you may want to add as you progress with your ketogenic diet.

Sources

Categories
Keto Nutrition Keto Reviews

Is Milk Keto-Friendly?

The human race has been drinking cow’s milk since cattle were domesticated around 10,000 years ago.

In ancient Egypt, only the rich and powerful can consume milk. Nowadays, it has become an essential ingredient in the diet of almost every human being on the planet.

The reasons milk became popular are a no-brainer. It’s delicious and a great source of macronutrients. It’s also loaded with vitamins and minerals like calcium. 

Milk has even ingrained itself in our language: “Milk of human kindness,” “mother’s milk,” “don’t cry over spilled milk.”

But cow’s milk is not perfect for everybody.

It contains lactose, a carbohydrate which many people have trouble digesting if they don’t produce the necessary enzyme (lactase) to digest it. Others have an allergy to dairy products. And those who are on a low carb or low-calorie diet may choose to stay away from certain types of milk because of carb or calorie content. 

Of course, dairy is not the only milk available. There is now a vast range of plant-based milk, but which are suitable for a keto diet?

Can You Drink Milk on Keto?

You can drink milk on keto, but you need to be cautious about it’s carb content.

While a tall glass of traditional dairy milk is virtually prohibited when you’re on keto, you can add cream to your coffee and cereal. Thanks to a handful of milk alternatives that are readily available in the grocery.

Is Non-Dairy Milk Allowed on a Keto Diet?

There is a lot of keto-friendly non-dairy milk out there, which means your milk-consuming days aren’t entirely over. Some dairy-free milk is perfect for a keto diet, though others less so.

What is true for all is that you always want to choose the unsweetened versions. Anything sweetened has added sugars and unnecessary carbs, which can kick you out of ketosis. Anything not labeled unsweetened should be looked at carefully, as some are surprisingly full of sugar.

Some excellent plant-based milk products are low-carb, lactose-free, and contain fat and dietary fiber, making them ideal for those on the keto diet. If you have the time, you can also make your milk, ensuring that what you’re drinking doesn’t have additives.

Is Whole Milk Keto-Friendly?

While whole milk has a lot going for it as far as nutrition is concerned. It has protein, vitamin D, calcium, and more. However, it’s not suitable for keto because of its carb content.

You can put a splash in your coffee, but a glass of whole milk is out as it provides 12g of carbs per cup.

Whole milk is natural, nutrient-rich, and tastes good. And while a glass of whole milk won’t take you out of ketosis, it’s a little higher in carbs.

Keto-friendly Milk Substitute

Image with Milk kefir ingredients, kefir grains, serving glass, mason jar,strainer and raw whole organic milk

Keto-friendly milk needs to be low in carbs. Luckily, there are several good options. However, you should note that only the unsweetened versions of these milk are appropriate for keto.

Additionally, carb counts will vary significantly between different brands. That’s due to their varying ingredients and formulations.

Be sure to carefully read the nutrition facts on the label to assess whether your milk is truly keto-friendly. Here is some keto-friendly milk:

Almond milk 

Almond milk is the most widely used milk on keto. It’s inexpensive, sold at most grocery stores, and relatively low in carbs at 1 gram of net carbs per cup (240 mL).

Almond Milk contains very little or no carbs at all if it is unsweetened. It is usually fortified with calcium and is naturally rich in vitamins like vitamin E.

Almond milk is an excellent choice for a keto-friendly alternative to cow’s milk, but always check to make sure it is unsweetened.

Coconut milk

Coconut milk is also a good milk sub for keto, but some brands contain up to 5 grams of net carbs per 1-cup (240-mL) serving. As this is one-fifth of the daily carb allotment for keto, it should be used sparingly.

Coconut milk is much like almond milk in terms of carbs and nutrients. But this also means that you have to consider the nutrition facts, as some brands are just as carb-rich as whole milk.

Macadamia nut milk

Macadamia nut milk is more expensive than other keto-friendly milk, but it’s the lowest in carbs. One cup (240 mL) contains 1 gram of fiber and 0 net carbs.

Flax milk

Made from real flax seeds, flax milk is high in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats. One cup (240 mL) contains only 1 gram of net carbs.

Flax seeds are a great superfood. Plus, flax milk is naturally cholesterol-free, lactose-free, and full of omega-3 fatty acids. It also has minerals like calcium and vitamins, including vitamins A, B12, and D. It’s also low calorie (25 calories per cup).

Soy milk

Soy Milk is another milk option that, in its unsweetened form, is very keto-friendly. Like all plant-based milk, soy milk is naturally free of cholesterol, and it is an excellent source of calcium and potassium.

Unsweetened soy milk holds 1 gram of fiber and 3 net carbs per cup (240 mL). Plus, it provides 7 grams of protein.

Cashew milk

Cashew milk contains only 2 grams of net carbs per cup (240 mL).

Pea milk

As a legume, peas are naturally high in protein, and pea milk possesses 8 grams of protein and 2 grams of net carbs per 1 cup (240 mL).

Half-and-half

Half-and-half is a combination of whole cow’s milk and heavy cream. It contains only 1 gram of net carbs per ounce (30 mL) and is a good substitute for cow’s milk in coffee and cooking.

Heavy cream

Heavy cream is the fatty portion separated from fresh cow’s milk to make butter or whipped cream. It’s high in fat and calories but contains only 1 gram of net carbs per ounce (30 mL).

Hemp Milk

Hemp milk is full of vitamins and minerals, including omega-3 fatty acids, omega-6 fatty acids, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and vitamins A, B12, and D.

While hemp milk maybe a little more challenging to find in the supermarket, it’s a great and nutrient-dense keto-friendly option.

A cup of unsweetened hemp milk carries 1.3g of carbs and approximately 86 calories. It is higher in fat than other alternatives on this list.

Hemp milk also contains 4.7g of protein, which puts it as the second-best milk alternative for protein content behind soy milk.

Kinds of milk to avoid on keto

Keto dieters should avoid kinds of milk that contain moderate to excessive amounts of carbs.

For instance, all sweetened milk (including sweetened versions of keto-friendly milk) should be avoided. That’s because they are high in carbs from added sugar.

Here is some other milk that you should avoid while on keto:

Cow’s milk

The typical keto diet includes many dairies loaded with protein and fat, but one cup of milk contains a 12g of carbs.

That’s not ideal for a keto diet where many are limiting carb intake to between 20-50g per day.

A splash in your coffee? Sure. But a glass to drink with a meal? Nope!

Whole milk, 2%, 1%, and nonfat all have a similar amount of carbohydrate, but those with more fat content have slightly fewer carbs.

Even lactose-free milk has around 12g per cup because it merely contains added lactase. They are easier to digest, sure, but it still retains the same amount of carbohydrates.

Cow’s milk contains lactose or milk sugar. This includes evaporated milk, ultra-filtered milk, and raw cow’s milk. One cup (244 mL) of 2% milk contains 12 grams of net carbs.

Oat milk

Oat milk is made from real oats, which are naturally high in carbs. This makes oat milk inappropriate for keto. One cup (240 mL) provides 17 grams of net carbs.

Rice milk

The same with oats, rice is naturally high in carbs. One cup (240 mL) contains 21 grams of net carbs.

Sweetened condensed milk

Condensed milk contains high amounts of added sugar and is used for making decadent desserts. But because of its high sugar content, you shouldn’t use it while on keto. One cup (240 mL) contains a whopping 165 grams of net carbs.

Goat’s milk

Like cow’s milk, goat’s milk carries natural sugars that make it too high in carbs to be keto-friendly. One cup (240 mL) provides 11 grams of net carbs.

Neither goat’s milk nor sheep’s milk is any better when it comes to carbs compared to cow’s milk. They may have different purported health benefits, but none are keto-friendly due to carb content.

Essentially, if it’s meant to help a baby animal grow, it will not help you stay in ketosis.

Best Keto Milk Substitutes for Non-dairy and Dairy Options

Other dairy milk contains many of the same health benefits and all the carbs.

Meanwhile, the different percentages and types (nonfat ) refer to the fat content. There are around 12g of carbs in all forms of cow’s milk, and other milk is very similar.

A 1% fat milk lowers the fat content to 2.4g overall. On the other hand, nonfat or skim milk is virtually fat-free. Again, low-fat milk should contain the same protein content as whole milk, its just the different fat percentage.

In general, the best alternatives will be either a high-fat dairy product or unsweetened plant-based milk made from nuts, seeds, peas, or soy. In both situations, the product should have the same consistency as milk with a small fraction of the net carbs.

Keto-friendly, dairy-based milk substitutes

  • Heavy cream or heavy whipping cream: This will be the highest fat dairy alternative for the keto lifestyle.
  • Half and half: Being a mix of half milk and half cream, this is also a good alternative for whole milk. Do remember that it will be a bit lower in fat than heavy cream.

Dairy-free, vegan milk substitutes for keto

  • Unsweetened coconut milk: Pure coconut milk is the highest-fat and vegan-friendly milk substitute.
  • Unsweetened nut milk: You can find a vegan keto milk replacement made from virtually any nut. “Milk” produced from walnuts, cashews, almonds, macadamias, and even hazelnuts can be bought online or off the shelves. Look for the products with the shortest ingredients list and less than 2 grams of net carbs per cup.
  • Unsweetened seed milk: Flax milk and hemp milk are the two easy-to-find keto alternatives for anyone with nut and dairy allergies. Read the ingredients label carefully, as these products do contain other carb-rich ingredients. Look for the flax or hemp milk products with fewer than 2 grams of net carbs per cup.
  • Unsweetened soy milk: Though most soy milk products are far from low-carb, some keto-friendly alternatives are available. Look for unsweetened organic soy milk and carefully read the nutrition label. It should have no more than 2 grams of net carbs per cup.
  • Unsweetened pea protein milk: Whether it’s called pea milk or plant protein milk, the highlighted ingredient will be pea protein. This is great for anyone who wants a dairy-free keto milk substitute, nut-free, vegan-friendly, and high in protein. Unfortunately, not all pea milk products are keto-friendly, so read the label thoroughly.

If you’re not avoiding dairy, then you can drink a mixture of nut milk and heavy cream for a fuller milk substitute.

Mix heavy whipping cream with a nut or seed milk of your choice. A delicious way to do this is to use about 80% nut or seed milk and 20% heavy cream.

Replacing Milk With Keto-friendly Substitute

Regardless of the milk option you choose, use a 1:1 substitution ratio when replacing the milk for most recipes.

For example, if a recipe calls for two tablespoons of milk, use two tablespoons of your preferred alternative.

As with most keto-friendly replacements, however, there are a few things to keep in mind for an optimal result:

  • Ensure your keto milk replacement is homogenous (i.e., it shouldn’t have any particles or separation between water and fat).
  • Study the flavor and fat content of your milk alternative. In general, high-fat milk is creamy and satiating, while the low-fat options will tend to water down some of the recipe’s flavors.
  • Try to mirror what the recipe calls for. If the recipe asks for low-fat milk, use half and half, light coconut milk, or any other lower-fat keto milk alternative. Conversely, when the recipe asks for whole milk, try using heavy cream, full-fat coconut milk, or high-fat nut milk.
  • Consider the differences in macronutrients for accurate tracking. The fat, protein, and carb content of milk vs. your milk substitute will differ significantly. Make sure you take this into account to increase your chances of success with keto.

When Should You Avoid Having Milk on Keto?

There are three things to look out for when drinking milk on a keto diet: Carbohydrates, saturated fat, and lactose.

There are 12g of carbs for every glass of whole milk. If you are on keto or another low-carb diet, 12g of carbs can be too much.

Sure, you are granted some carbs on a keto diet, but not when a food or drink takes up one-third of your daily allowance. You may be better off getting your carbohydrates from other sources like fresh veggies and seeds.

The carbs in milk are the main reason many people on keto diets leave it on the shelf. It’s also worth avoiding oat milk and rice milk since they both have even more carbohydrates per cup, at 16g and 22g, respectively.

Final Thoughts

So, is milk keto? Can you drink milk on keto? Of course, you can include cow’s milk into your keto diet, so long as you take the carbs per serving into consideration.

There are lots of beneficial aspects of cow’s milk. However, you can also get your vitamins, minerals, and protein in plant-based kinds of milk, and in the meat and cheeses you’ll eat as part of your keto diet.

Can you drink milk on keto? You can if you want. But it would be best to make it a cup of a milk option such as almond, soy, coconut, or any of the others we discussed above.

Many milk replacements have the calcium and some of the nutrients with few or none of the carbs. You might be better off overlooking cow’s milk if you are on a keto diet and getting what carbs you want from better sources. Luckily, there are plenty of keto-friendly milk options.

Your best choices are unsweetened, plant-based milk alternatives, except rice and oat milk. Half-and-half and heavy cream are reliable options as well.

Avoid cow and goat milk because they contain natural sugar, and avoid sweetened milk, as they’re high in added sugar.

Thankfully, milk doesn’t have to be a thing of the past just because you’re following a keto diet.

Sources

Categories
Fat Loss Keto Nutrition Keto Reviews

The Best and Worst Alcohol on Keto

The ketogenic diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet followed by people who intend to lose weight and improve their well being.

This diet requires careful planning so that you can stick within your allowed daily carb intake and keep your body in ketosis. This can mean not consuming sweets, snacks, and other high-carb beverages like soft drinks and alcohol.

Luckily, there are many low-carb alcoholic drinks that you can enjoy in moderation.

It’s “in moderation” since alcohol doesn’t help with weight loss. The more alcohol you drink, the more challenging it will be for your body to burn fat. That’s because your enzymes will prioritize burning the alcohol.

Another effect of alcohol drinking is that you tend to eat more. Plus, alcoholic beverages vary in terms of how many net carbs they contain. Some won’t affect your weight loss journey, while some can kick you out of ketosis.

It’s common for people who do keto diet to drink since it has lower carbs than beer. Moreover, spirits like whiskey and vodka have zero carbs.

Watch out for sweet mixed drinks – they may have massive amounts of sugar. For more detail, check out the visual guide below.

Will Drinking Kick You Out of Ketosis?

Getting into ketosis and staying there is primarily driven by following a very low carb diet. So as long as you don’t go over your recommended daily net carb intake, the occasional drink likely won’t cause concern. 

Additionally, alcohol itself doesn’t mess with your body’s ability to produce ketones. The opposite may be true. Alcohol consumption has been associated with a decrease in blood sugar and an increase in ketone production.

However, this does not mean you should drink a lot on keto to increase ketone levels. 

Excessive alcohol consumption can not only lead to serious health concerns. It can also be deadly for people with diabetes because it can lead to alcoholic ketoacidosis (AKA).

It is also thought that being in ketosis can decrease alcohol tolerance. However, there is not much research to support this theory. 

According to medical professionals, if you do choose to drink, do so in moderation. Keep your intake below one drink each day for women and two drinks per day for men.

The bottom line, you are better off avoiding alcohol altogether. But If you choose to drink occasionally, here are the best and worst types of liquor for keto. 

What to Buy?

Wine

Even on a keto diet (below 20 grams per day), you can probably have a glass of wine reasonably regularly. And on a moderately low carb diet, wine is not a problem.

Dry wines usually contain less than 0.5 grams of sugar per glass.

Fermentation byproducts in wine, like glycerol, should have a minimal effect on blood sugar or insulin levels.

Using 2 grams as an estimate of carbs per glass of dry wine is conservative. Fortunately, all dry wines fit nicely within a keto diet.

Sweet dessert wines, however, contain a lot more sugar.

White WinesServing SizeCaloriesNet CarbsAverage ABV
Sparkling White5 fl oz961.512
Brut Cava5 fl oz1282.512
Brut Champagne5 fl oz1472.812
Pinot Blanc5 fl oz1192.8512.5
Pinot Grigio5 fl oz122310.7
Chardonnay5 fl oz1233.113
Albarino5 fl oz1433.513
Riesling5 fl oz1285.59.5
Muscat (Muscato)5 fl oz1287.914.5
Red WinesServing SizeCaloriesNet CarbsAverage ABV
Pinot Noir5 fl oz1213.410.4
Merlot5 fl oz1223.710.6
Cabernet5 fl oz1223.810.3
Syrah5 fl oz1223.810.5
Zinfandel5 fl oz1294.211.1

Beer

Beer is a problem on keto. There’s a reason people talk about “beer bellies.” Beer is made from grains, which provide a lot of rapidly digestible carbs. It’s even been called “liquid bread.”

For this reason, most beers are bad for weight control and should be avoided on keto. Note that the amount of carbs in beer varies depending on the brand. There are a few possible low-carb options for keto.

Low-carb BeersCaloriesNet CarbsAverage ABV
Greens Trailblazer1190.54.7
Budweiser Select 55551.92.4
Miller 64642.42.8
Rolling Rock Green Light832.43.7
Michelob Ultra952.64.2
Budweiser Select993.14.3
Beck’s Premier Light643.22.3
Miller Lite963.24.2
Busch Light953.24.1
Natural Light953.24.2
Michelob Ultra Amber1143.74
Miller Chill10044.2
Coors Light10254.2
Amstel Light9553.5
Keystone Light10454.1
Budweiser Light1106.64.2
Heineken Light996.83.3
Yuengling Light998.53.6

Vodka

Vodka is usually made from a grain base such as potatoes, rye, or wheat, and runs around 35 – 50% alcohol by volume. When you’re grabbing a bottle from the liquor store or ordering at a bar, try to take a straight vodka – nothing flavored.

If you must have flavored, there are a number of them that are zero carbs, but do your research online first! Many of the flavored vodkas have syrups and sugars added to them.

Popular Vodka BrandsServing SizeCaloriesNet CarbsAverage ABV
Burnett’s1.5 oz96040
Smirnoff1.5 oz97040
Absolut1.5 oz100040
Svedka1.5 oz103040
Grey Goose1.5 oz103040
Stolichnaya1.5 oz103040
Ciroc1.5 oz103040
Skyy1.5 oz105040

Whiskey, Scotch, and Bourbon

Whiskey is made from fermented grain, usually combining rye, wheat, corn, or barley, and comes in around 35 – 50% alcohol by volume.

Even though it’s a dark liquor, all whiskeys do not have any carbs (or sugars) added – making it an excellent drink for someone on a ketogenic diet. Barrel-aged whiskey has higher phenols and ellagic acid (combats free radicals) than red wine.

Depending on where the whiskey is from is where the name is derived. Scotch, whiskey, and bourbon have the same form of alcohol. Some don’t like the taste of whiskey for the pure harshness.

If that’s the case, it may be better to use milder alcohol like vodka.

Some popular brands of whiskey are Jack Daniels, Crown Royal, Jim Beam, and Seagram’s.

Popular Whiskey BrandsServing SizeCaloriesNet CarbsAverage ABV
Crown Royal1.5 oz96040
Jack Daniels1.5 oz98040
Jim Beam1.5 oz104040
Seagram’s1.5 oz104040
Dewar’s1.5 oz104040
Wild Turkey1.5 oz104050
Chivas Regal1.5 oz105040
Johnnie Walker1.5 oz105040

Tequila

Most tequila is made from the agave plant and is commonly made at 40% alcohol per volume. There are not too many flavored tequilas on the market, so you don’t have to worry too much about added sugars or carbs. 

Note that some tequila producers do mix the drink with some other alcohols. So try to getting tequila that is derived wholly from the agave plant.

The agave plant is grown in many places. But depending on where it is grown will affect how the tequila tastes. In highland areas, you may have a sweeter and more aromatic form of this alcohol.

Popular Tequila BrandsServing SizeCaloriesNet CarbsAverage ABV
Don Julio1.5 oz96040
Tres Agaves1.5 oz102040
El Jimador1.5 oz102040
Patron1.5 oz103040
1800 Tequila1.5 oz103040
Milagro1.5 oz103040
Cazadores1.5 oz103040
Sauza1.5 oz104040

Rum

Rum is generally made from sugarcane or molasses and comes in a variety of styles. It’s also zero carbs and zero sugar, but you need to watch out for flavored rums and rums with additives.

Usually, the darker the rum, the richer the flavor is, and the older it is. Usually, rum comes in at about 35% alcohol by volume.

When rum is first distilled, it comes out as a clear liquid. It’s then typically placed in bourbon barrels to pick up the oaky flavor and dark color you’re used to seeing.

The flavor and color from the barrels do not add carbohydrates.

Popular Tequila BrandsServing SizeCaloriesNet CarbsAverage ABV
Malibu Island Spiced1.5 oz72030
Captain Morgan Spiced1.5 oz860.435
Bacardi Superior1.5 oz96040
Myer’s Original Dark1.5 oz97040
Castillo1.5 oz97040
Sailor Jerry1.5 oz103040
The Kraken1.5 oz1051.540

Gin

Gin is made from a grain base and typically covers about 35% alcohol by volume. It is usually made with citruses such as lemon, orange, or lime – but be aware of flavored or sweetened versions.

Sloe gin is a commonly flavored gin that’s made in England and flavored with sloe drupes. These have added sugars, and therefore added carbs in them.

Most people think of a gin and tonic when they hear gin, but tonic and most common mixers do have carbs, so you need to be careful.

Popular Gin BrandsServing SizeCaloriesNet CarbsAverage ABV
Gordon’s1.5 oz96040
Seagram’s1.5 oz103040
Bombay1.5 oz114047
Beefeater1.5 oz115047
Tanqueray1.5 oz116047.3

Brandy

Brandy is made from the mash, juice, or wine or grapes.

There are many types of brandy, but the most common is Cognac – a brandy that’s made in the Cognac region of France.

Brandy typically varies from 35-60% alcohol per volume, and is sometimes aged in barrels.

Some companies add caramel colorings to their brandy instead of letting it age in the barrel. So be careful of added food dyes, as they can add extra carbs.

Popular Brandy BrandsServing SizeCaloriesNet CarbsAverage ABV
Honey Bee1.5 oz103040
Courvoisier1.5 oz104040
McDowell’s1.5 oz1040.140
Martell1.5 oz1260.440
Hennessy1.5 oz103140
Remy Martin1.5 oz103340

Low-carb Cider

Cider is the result of fermenting fruit juices like apple juices into apple cider.

After the fermentation and filtration process, most manufacturers will add ingredients in the cider. They would usually add juice or sugar to give the cider a distinct flavor.

While there are no low-carb ciders, there are many brands that are delivering flavored seltzer water mixed with alcohol. These are typically as close as you’ll get to cider.

But if you’re a true cider fan, then it may not be a great alternative. Instead, think of it as a crisp and refreshing drink.

Low-carb Sparkling AlcoholServing SizeCaloriesNet CarbsAverage ABV
Truly Spiked12 oz10025
White Claw12 oz11045
SpikedSeltzer12 oz14056
Nauti Seltzer12 oz11055

What to Avoid?

Most of us on a low-carb, ketogenic diet know that sugar is in just about everything you can find. This applies to mixers and chasers for alcohol, as well.

  • Port/Sherry. These are also known as dessert wines and include all types of port, sherry, and sauternes. They have very high sugar alcohol, usually over 13g carbs for just a 3 oz serving. Avoid these where possible.
  • Sweet Wines. Much sweeter than dry wines, these are typically enjoyed with dessert and are a bit lighter than port or sherry. These include Moscato, auslese riesling, tokaji, and Malvasia wines. They usually have around 11-18g carbs per glass, so you should avoid these.
  • Sangria/Margarita Mix. Typically sangria mixes and margarita mixes have over 10g carbs per 1.5 oz serving (a shot worth). Avoid these as much as possible.
  • Wine Coolers/Alcopops. The most common of these are Smirnoff ice – they’re essentially sugar-laden soda with alcohol in them. You should avoid these.
  • Liqueurs. Usually, a combination of alcohol and simple syrup (made from sugar) is too high in carbohydrates.

Some other things to watch out for when ordering drinks are the extra flavors that bartenders will commonly add.

Keep in mind that if you’re ordering from a bar, you can typically request your drink to be made or specially request a no-sugar drink from the bartender.

Some examples of things to avoid that are commonly added to cocktails include:

  • Fruit Juice. It’s very common for bartenders to make drinks with cranberry, orange, pineapple, tomato, and melon juices. Be very careful and try to stay away from cocktails as they commonly add these.
  • Syrups. Like the syrups at coffee shops, these are typically made with a lot of sugar content. If your drink has any sweet syrup added (fudge, whipped cream, fruit “flavoring”), try to choose something else.
  • Fruit toppings. Many drinks are topped with berries or have wedges of orange or pineapple in them. These aren’t too bad because you can pick them off – just make sure that the drink underneath the fruit does not have any added sugars.

A Word of Caution

When eating a keto diet, some people get intoxicated from significantly less alcohol. So be cautious the first time you drink alcohol on keto.

You may only need half as many drinks as usual to dig yourself. So keto may save you money at the bar. 

The reasons for this shared experience aren’t fully known. Possibly the liver is busy providing ketones or glucose and thus has less capacity to burn alcohol.

This is great if you’re looking to maximize alcohol’s intoxicating impact. On the other hand, your hangover could be worse.

Be very careful doing anything where impairment could increase the risk of accidents or injury. Never drink and drive.

Furthermore, if you’re using a keto diet to treat metabolic syndrome and fatty liver disease, be aware that alcohol can hurt liver health.

Excessive alcohol acts as a liver toxin. Finally, it appears that alcohol intake might somewhat reduce ketone production, even in the absence of sugar or carbs.

Note: If you are on a ketogenic diet for weight loss, you may want to consider avoiding alcohol altogether.

While you can consume low-carb alcohol and stay in ketosis, the body will burn the ethyl in the drink instead of your stored fats. In other words, alcohol will slow down the fat loss process because a smaller amount of the free fatty acids will be converted into ketones.

Besides this, alcohol does affect hormone levels that are linked to belly fat and weight loss. So if you’re a heavy drinker, you can expect very slow or no weight loss at all.

There is also a condition called alcohol ketoacidosis, which can be deadly. It usually happens to people who haven’t eaten any food in an extended period and are drinking large amounts of alcohol in a short period.

Moderation is Key

Although plenty of keto-friendly alcoholic beverages are available, that doesn’t mean that they should be part of your routine.

Even low-carb varieties of alcohol are still rich in empty calories, which means that they supply many calories with little to no essential nutrients like protein, fiber, vitamins, or minerals.

Not only can overindulging in booze increase your risk of nutritional deficiencies over time, but it may also contribute to gradual weight gain.

In fact, in one eight-year study in 49,324 women, consuming at least two drinks per day was associated with an increased risk of significant weight gain.

Alcohol can also suppress fat burning and increase body fat by storing extra calories as fat tissue in your body.

Excessive drinking may also contribute to other severe health conditions. This includes diabetes, heart disease, liver problems, and cancer.

For this reason, it’s best to keep alcohol intake moderate. One drink per day for women and two per day for men would suffice.

Final Thoughts

Even on a keto diet, there are lots of low-carb alcoholic beverages to choose from.

Wine, light beer, and pure forms of alcohol offer few or zero carbs per serving. You can also pair them with low-carb mixers like seltzer, diet soda, or sugar-free tonic water.

But regardless of your diet, it’s best to keep alcohol consumption in check to avoid adverse health effects.

As a rule of thumb, women should stick to a maximum of one drink per day, while men should stick to two or fewer.

Sources

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Carbs in Cucumbers

One of the best vegetables to consume on a keto diet are cucumbers. They are low in carbs and contain alot of water, which will help you to keep your body hydrated.

How many carbs are in cucumbers?

There’s approximately 2.2g of carbs for every 100g of cucumbers.

This will account for 12 calories per 100g serving.

This is great considering that you will want to consume up to 300g of a fibrous carb to keep you feeling full. This means that you could consume up to 6.6g of carbs in a single meal. Or if you have 3 meals a day, you can see yourself consuming 19. 8g of carbs in a day, which will keep you under the 20g per day limit which is needed to keep your body in ketosis.

This will add up to 36 calories a day to your daily consumption.

Cucumber nutrition facts

100g
Calories 15 (1%DV)
Total Carbs 3.6g
Net Carbs 3.1g
Fiber 0.5g
Fat 0.1g
Protein 0.65g
VITAMINS
Vitamin A 105IU
Vitamin C 2.8mg
Vitamin K 16.4mg
Vitamin B5 0.3mg
Folate 7mcg
MINERALS
Calcium 16mg
Iron 0.3mg
Magnesium 13mg
Potassium 147mg
Manganese 0.1mg