A ketogenic diet is becoming a new trend in the world of health and nutrition. This diet is specialized that is very low in carbohydrates, high in fat (healthy fat) that shows effectiveness for weight loss, diabetic individuals, and people with epilepsy. Studies and evidence can aid the risk of certain types of cancers, Alzheimer’s disease, and other illnesses. A keto diet for weight loss limits carbohydrate intake of about 20 to 50 grams a day. It may seem challenging, but there are wide ranges of nutritious foods that can fit into this new healthy eating habit. The following are healthy foods that can help you jumpstart your ketogenic diet.
Shellfish and fish are known as keto diet foods. There are types of fish like salmon that are very rich in healthy fats like omega-3 fatty acids and trace minerals such as selenium and potassium, plus they are carb-free. However, carbohydrates in shellfish may vary. For example, shrimp and some crabs have zero carbs, but other shellfish have minimal carbs. They can still be included in the keto diet, but you need to count it in to narrow down your carb intake. To include them in your diet, you need to know that 100 grams of each shellfish can offer the following carb.
- Squid- 3 grams
- Mussels- 7 grams
- Octopus- 4 grams
- Clams- 5 grams
- Oysters- 4 grams
Fishes like mackerel, salmon, and sardines are loaded with healthy fats that are proven effective in lowering insulin levels and augment insulin sensitivity in obese and overweight individuals. Also, the consumption of foods rich in omega-3 is linked to better mental health and lower risk of developing diseases. A keto meal plan should consist of at least two servings of seafood every week.
2. Low Carbohydrates Vegetables
The truth is that all vegetables are low in carbohydrates, but there are non-starchy veggies that are very low in carbs and calories but very high in nutrient value. Green leafy vegetables are a good source of fiber in which the body can be used as a source of energy like carbohydrates. Fiber is not broken down during digestion as the body, similar to carbohydrates, absorb it. When computing for carbohydrates, it is essential to look for the “net carbs” or total carbs less fiber.
Most vegetables are low in net carbs, but consumption of starchy veggies such as yams, potatoes, and beets as keto snacks can make you over the limit of your target carbs per day. For green leafy vegetables like raw spinach and brussels sprouts, the net carb is only 1 gram per 1 cup. It is good to know that cruciferous vegetables are already proven to have components that can fight free radicals.
Cheese is considered as keto diet foods which are very nutritious and delicious at the same time. There are more than a hundred types of cheese that you can include in your diet, and they are all low in carbohydrates and high in healthy fats that make cheese keto-approved. You need to know that 28 grams of cheddar cheese offers 1 gram of carbs and a good protein source at 7 grams and 20 percent recommended dietary intake for calcium.
However, its saturated fat makes it a topic of debate for many health professionals, but cheese can decrease heart disease risk, according to some studies. Cheese is a source of conjugated linoleic acid, a fat-related to weight loss.
A study that runs for 12 weeks in older adults resulted in an increase in muscle mass and strength after consumption of 210 grams of ricotta cheese as keto snacks every day.
Avocado is an excellent addition to your keto meal plan as it has 9 grams of carbohydrates and 7 grams of fiber with total net carbs of 2 grams. The fruit is also a fantastic source of vitamins and minerals like potassium, a vital mineral, especially as you shift to a ketogenic diet. Research conducted in people who consumed more avocados experienced a 22 percent reduction in their LDL or bad cholesterol and an 11 percent increased in HDL good cholesterol.
5. Meat and Poultry
A keto diet for weight loss is mostly composed of meat and poultry. These contain no carbohydrates and are very rich in B vitamins and minerals such as potassium, zinc, and selenium. It is important not to experience muscle loss in a low carb diet, so it is vital to consume high-quality protein from meat. As much as possible, you need to look for grass-fed meat as these animals produce meat with a very high amount of omega-3 fatty acids compared to grain-fed meat.