If you’ve been hearing these terms mentioned but were too afraid to ask what they mean, this is the perfect beginners guide for you.
The keto diet is a phenomenon, and one more and more people are getting on board with. Basically, that’s because it combines delicious, satisfying meals with awesome weight loss results!
Want to know more?
Here’s our answer to the question you’ve been dying to ask: ‘What’s the keto diet?’
What’s the Keto Diet?
Simply put, the keto diet is a high fat, low carbohydrate, moderate protein way of eating.
Keto is short for ketogenic. This means that you are trying to bring your body into a state called ketosis.
During ketosis, the body cannot extract enough energy from carbohydrates to perform normal functions. Therefore, it turns to using fat to find the energy it needs.
This is a natural process and with a balanced keto diet is a healthy state for the body. Keto also lowers blood sugar and insulin levels, which has benefits for the body.
Why Choose Keto?
Most people choose the keto diet because it’s an effective way of losing weight. But apart from this, what’s the keto diet going to do to my health?
However, studies are now ongoing into other health benefits that may come from following this way of eating.
Some studies indicate that it can help in controlling epilepsy, while the lower blood sugar levels and weight loss induced by keto can help with controlling the symptoms of diabetes.
What Do You Eat on a Keto Diet?
On a keto diet, you restrict your intake of carbohydrates to about 50g or less per day.
This means that you need to stay away from most high carbohydrate foods, such as potatoes, rice, pasta, and bread. To illustrate, one standard slice of wholemeal bread contains about 12 grams of carbs.
So while you do cut down on certain foods, you fill your diet with foods that are high in fat and moderate in protein.
Some key keto foods include:
Think steak, chicken, bacon, sausage (check the carb content), ham etc.
Especially fish that are high in fat, such as tuna, salmon, and mackerel.
Not all eggs are created equal – look for organic or omega-3 eggs.
Making meals very interesting, you can enjoy indulging in grass-fed butter and cream.
Cheeses such as cheddar, goat, and blue cheese also fit the high fat, low carb requirements. With dairy, though, you have to follow the same rules as protein and ensure that the dairy only comes from 100% grass-fed and pastured animals. As with meats, not all dairy is the same.
Perfect for satisfying snacks, you can enjoy almonds, walnuts, pecans, brazils, coconut – the list goes on. Macadamia nuts are the go to choice, though, because they are high in monounsaturated fats and low in polyunsaturated fats.
Just check out the carb content as some are higher than others – cashews, for example, are particularly loaded with carbs).
Although vegetables contain carbs, they are essential for health and are not completely eliminated on a keto diet.
That being said, choose low-carb veggie options, such as leafy green vegetables, broccoli, asparagus, mushrooms, onions, tomatoes, and peppers.
Although they’re technically a fruit, a special shout-out goes to avocadoes here (they’re the only fruit that make it onto our list).
Avocados come in at just 2g carbs per 100g, and are packed with other health-giving properties. This makes them a top choice for all keto dieters.
The majority of calories on a keto diet come from fat, so it’s important that you’re getting it from a healthy source.
In terms of oil, extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil, cold pressed coconut oil and MCT oil (extracted from coconut oil) are top of the list. However, you do not want to cook with olive oil and only want to use it on salads or the like.
Other animal fats that you can enjoy include butter, ghee (a type of butter with the milk solids removed), lard, chicken fat and duck fat.
A Typical Day’s Keto Eating
Breakfast – start your day right with a big plate of bacon and eggs – breakfast of champions! However, if you aren’t hungry in the morning you should take advantage of this and not force yourself to eat. The number one sign that your metabolism is improving is being less hungry in the morning.
Lunch – prepare a lettuce wrap filled with ham, cheese, and mayonnaise, or BLT, for a satisfying midday meal.
Snack – nibble on some pork rinds, or cubes of cheese
Dinner – pork chop/steak with cream sauce and steamed broccoli
There are lots of variations on this theme, and you’ll discover great substitutes like cauliflower rice that can help you to adapt some of your old favorites.
In sum, though, a keto way of eating is pretty simple: fatty cuts of meats from 100% grass-fed and pastured animals; green leafy vegetables; healthy fats; and the strict avoidance of grains and processed a-cellular carbohydrate sources.
Keto Diet 101: Dos and Don’ts
There are some do’s and don’ts to help you get the best out of a keto diet.
Do’s include getting your protein levels right and making sure that you keep your electrolytes up.
Don’ts include thinking all fat is good fat – do some research to make sure that you are using the most healthy fats for your body. You have to make sure that you are not consuming too many polyunsaturated fats in order to get the most out of a ketogenic diet.
For 10 powerful quick keto tips, check out our blog.
How Do I Get Started?
If you think keto could be for you, the best thing you can do is make a plan, and stick to it.
Start by clearing your shelves of temptation. Cookies, cereal, and sweets can all break your resolve when they’re just sat there begging to be eaten.
Treat your friends by giving them away – and give yourself a fresh start.
Next, make a meal plan. Yes, keto is going to take some forward thinking, but don’t worry, you’ll soon see it’s all worth it.
Make a shopping list for the ingredients you need to make your keto meals. Also, plan how to avoid getting caught out by situations where there’s no keto food available. An emergency bag of nuts can be a great standby.
The Answer – What’s the Keto Diet?
In a nutshell, the keto diet is a great way to improve your health, give yourself more energy and achieve sustainable weight loss.
The foods you’ll eat are natural, delicious and satisfying. Once you’re in ketosis, you’ll find sugar cravings lessen and your hunger levels are evener. Now if your friends ask you, ‘What’s the keto diet?’ you can tell them all about it!
Fitting keto into a busy lifestyle can be a real challenge. Many markets and restaurants are simply not equipped to provide the nutritious ketogenic meals you need to keep your body reaping the benefits of ketosis.
At Ketoned Bodies, we ship delicious, healthy keto meals right to your doorstep.
Check out our sumptuous menu today.