Keto Diet Foods: What to Eat and What to Avoid

Keto Diet Foods: What to Eat and What to Avoid

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’re probably aware that the keto diet has recently become the uber-trendy diet. Because it helps you lose weight quickly, a high-fat, low-carb food plan has taken over the diet market.

A Keto diet plan seeks to keep your carb intake to zero throughout the day. Anyone starting the keto diet will see a significant reduction in bloat and water weight.

The ketogenic diet has medicinal applications and is promoted by celebrities on social media. Is it a hazard of diet culture, or is it something else? Let us investigate.

Read – What Foods Can You Eat on a Ketogenic Diet for Diabetes?

What exactly is the Keto Diet?

A keto or ketogenic diet is low in carbs, rich in fat, and moderate in protein. The diet is primarily composed of 65–80 percent fat, with the remaining consisting of protein and carbohydrates.

The purpose of keto diets is to force your body to use fat as fuel. People utilised the keto diet to cure epileptic children in the 1920s. It has gained popularity as a weight-loss diet over time.

The keto diet comes in a variety of flavours. They consume different dietary types – carbs, protein, and fat.

Standard ketogenic diet: A typical ketogenic diet consists of 10% carbs, 20% protein, and 70% fats in the daily meal plan.

High protein ketogenic diet: The protein ratio climbs to 35% while reducing daily fat consumption to 60% and carbs to 5%.

Cyclical ketogenic diet: A cyclical keto diet consists of five days of the conventional keto plan and two days of heavy carb intake.

Targeted ketogenic diet: If you’re physically active, you can try an alternative keto regimen. It allows carbohydrate eating before to an exercise.

Ketosis: The Ketogenic Diet’s Mechanism

By adopting a keto diet, your body enters a metabolic state (ketosis). As a daily energy source, the body burns and breaks down fat rather than carbs. When you limit your carbohydrate intake, your blood glucose levels begin to fall.

This is due to the fact that fatty acids produced from adipose tissue are transformed into ketone bodies. These fat-derived ketone bodies prioritise bodily fuel over glucose. Simply put, when the body is deprived of carbohydrates, it begins to look for energy elsewhere. Fats are burned in this situation. And it is this that will assist you in losing weight.

Foods to Eat on a Ketogenic Diet

The keto diet consists of 70-75 percent fat, 20 percent protein, and 5-10 percent carbs. To achieve optimal ketosis, some persons may eat only 20 grammes of carbs per day.

Anything with carbohydrates and sweets is forbidden. Meat and poultry are inherently low in carbohydrates, making them perfect for keto diets. Here are a few keto-friendly dishes and snacks you can enjoy on occasion.

Saturated seafood

Salmon is a rich fish high in heart-healthy omega-3 fats that qualifies for a keto diet due to its low carbohydrates. One hundred grammes of salmon includes 21.6 grammes of protein, 5.93 grammes of fat, and no carbohydrates. You can also choose high-quality protein-rich seafood such as shrimp, sardines, tuna, scallops, and trout.

Mussels, lobsters, oysters, clams, and crab are low-carb, protein-rich, and keto-friendly shellfish. For example, 100 grammes of crab meat contains 20 grammes of protein, 1.76 grammes of fat, and no carbohydrates.

Keto-Friendly Vegetables

Most vegetables have a high carbohydrate content, while zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers, cauliflower, bell peppers, and squash have a low carbohydrate content. Non-starchy veggies are low in carbohydrates and calories, but high in fibre, which helps to maintain a healthy gut.

Above-ground vegetables are typically the greatest keto diet selections. Lettuce, spinach, eggplant, asparagus, and olives are all acceptable additions. The net carbohydrate content of 100 grammes of spinach, lettuce, and asparagus is less than 2 grammes.

Seeds and Nuts

While on a keto diet, the best nuts to eat are walnuts, pecans, almonds, hazelnuts, pine nuts, peanuts, and macadamias. This is due to the fact that nuts are high in polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats while being low in carbs. One hundred grammes of macadamia nuts, for example, has 75.8 grammes of fat.

Sunflower, sesame, hemp, pumpkin, flax, and chia seeds can all be included in your keto diet. Oil-rich seeds give flavour and texture to bland keto recipes without sacrificing fat content. However, keep in mind that seeds and nuts should be consumed in moderation.


Berries are an exception to the rule that most fruits are high in carbohydrates. They have a lower carbohydrate content and are high in fibre. Strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries are all delicious additions to your Keto Meal Plan.

Blueberries, on the other hand, should be consumed in moderation because they contain the most carbohydrates of any berry. 100 grammes of raspberries contain 5 grammes of net carbohydrates, while 100 grammes of blueberries contain 12 grammes of net carbs. Berries have the added benefit of satisfying your sweet tooth.

Dairy and eggs

Increase the amount of cheese in your keto meals. It is high in fat and low in carbs. You can also incorporate full-fat yoghurts, cottage cheese, sour cream, butter, and whipped cream as long as you’re not allergic. Harder cheeses, such as Parmesan, contain less carbohydrates than soft cheeses.

Swiss or semi-hard cheese are also nice choices. Dairy’s high solid fat content takes time to digest, allowing you to feel fuller for longer. As a result, it may assist you in snacking less. In addition, a dairy-enriched keto meal provides vitamin D, phosphorus, and calcium.

The ketogenic diet relies heavily on eggs. Eggs are heavy in fat and low in carbs, but they are high in protein, antioxidants, and other critical minerals. As a result, one big egg has 6 grammes of protein and no more than 1 gramme of carbohydrates. The main protein and fat sources in keto breakfasts are whole eggs, egg yolks, and egg whites.

Fats and oils

In a keto diet, fats provide approximately 70% to 80% of daily energy. Plant-based oils are the purest fat source because they have no carbs, making them essential in keto diets.

Your low-carb diet necessitates the use of oil for cooking, dressing, and frying. A tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil has 14 grammes of fat and no carbs. Coconut oil is another high-fat alternative. It has a lot of saturated fats and is utilised in keto dishes.

Ghee is well-known in Indian households. Organic cow ghee is a healthy fat source that is suitable for the ketogenic diet. It can be used in baking, sautéing, and deep-frying, among other things. Butter, avocado oil, and animal fats are all viable possibilities.


It is safe to drink unsweetened coffee, green tea, black tea, and nondairy milk substitutes. Sweeteners like sucralose and stevia can be enjoyed on occasion.

Drink hard liquor, champagne, and dry wine in moderation. Despite the fact that diet sodas are technically keto drinks, they are not a healthy option. Sparkling water is another alternative that is low in net carbohydrates.


A few pieces of bacon, olives, and a slice of cheese are fantastic low-carb options. You can also have a modest amount of nuts such as Brazil nuts, pecans, and macadamia nuts as a snack.

Low carb veggie sticks with dip are a popular snack on the ketogenic diet. High-fat dipping sauce, sour cream, or cream cheese are common ingredients in the dip. An delightful keto snack is made with heavy whipping cream and berries without the use of sweeteners or sugar.

Keto Diet: Vegetarian vs. Non-Vegetarian

Vegetarian ketogenic diets focus on seeds, almonds, avocados, and coconut oil instead of fish and meat. In non-vegetarian meals, the low-carb eating pattern emphasises fatty fish, meat, and eggs.

In contrast to the non-vegetarian keto diet, a vegetarian diet necessitates careful preparation in order to meet nutritional requirements. The vegetarian keto diet is not for everyone, especially athletes, because it is quite restricted. Vegetarian keto diet foods to eat include:

  • Vegetables with no starch
  • The nut butter
  • Plant-derived oils
  • Nutritional yeast and tofu
  • Seasonings and herbs

The vegetarian keto diet excludes foods such as meat, poultry, fish, and shellfish, which are present in the non-vegetarian variant. Individually, a vegetarian diet and a keto diet can help you lose weight. When used together, they provide extra weight loss benefits.

Keto Diet Potential Side Effects

Before starting the keto diet, you should be aware of the potential adverse effects, notably keto flu. The keto flu is a group of symptoms that appear within the first 2-7 days after beginning a keto diet.

Because your body’s reaction to ketosis is comparable to flu symptoms, the term “keto flu” was coined. For the average person, it can endure anywhere from a week to a month.

Following that, you may have a slew of symptoms like diarrhoea, nausea, muscle aches, exhaustion, and headache. Aside from keto flu, here is a list of side effects that may help you decide whether or not to attempt the keto diet.

Ketogenic breath

Keto-breath is a typical side effect of the ketogenic diet that causes a peculiar flavour or odour in the mouth. Some describe it as having a strong odour similar to nail polish remover and a metallic taste.

A 2015 study, however, found that keto breath differs from regular foul breath. Keto breath is caused by ketosis, whereas foul breath is caused by bacterial accumulation in the mouth.


Constipation is a typical complication of the ketogenic diet and other low-carb diet programmes.

When you reduce your consumption of high-fiber foods such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, and whole grains in order to reduce your carbohydrate intake, you are indirectly saying goodbye to prebiotic fibre.

Constipation is caused by a decrease in prebiotic fibre, which affects the composition of intestinal microorganisms.

A decrease in athletic performance

According to a recent study, athletes who follow the keto diet perform worse in high-intensity workouts than those who eat a high carb diet. The body is in an acidic state during ketosis, which lowers its capacity to perform at its best.

Kidney Stress

The primary function of the kidney is protein metabolism. Unfortunately, most keto novices find up eating extra protein in addition to fat.

When you consume far more protein than you require, your kidneys suffer even more. It has the potential to impair renal function.

Changes in Mood

Carbohydrates have an important part in the production of serotonin, a brain chemical that controls mood and aids sleep. Unfortunately, a keto diet may not provide enough serotonin production, resulting in mood swings.

Related – The Complete Guide to Starting A Keto Diet for Beginners

Keto Diet Health Advantages

Control Your Appetite

According to research, the keto diet instantly suppresses your hunger. Following a low-carb, high-protein, high-fat diet consistently causes you to consume fewer calories. When you’re full, you won’t be hunting for additional goodies to chew on. As a result, you consume fewer calories.

Increased levels of good cholesterol

Healthy fats are one of the most effective ways to increase the amount of good cholesterol in your body. Because keto diets are heavy in fat, they significantly raise high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or good cholesterol. Furthermore, high HDL levels reduce the chance of developing heart disease.

Lowers blood sugar levels

According to one study, eating a keto diet on a daily basis decreases blood sugar. Because the dietary plan eliminates carbs, the body’s glucose levels fall. Less sugar enters the bloodstream as carb consumption is reduced by the keto diet.

Loss of Fat and Weight

Cutting carbs is the most efficient strategy to lose weight and burn fat. According to studies on the keto diet, rapid weight loss usually occurs within 1-2 weeks. Furthermore, fat loss is visible in the abdominal cavity. The Keto diet allows you to lose weight without feeling deprived.

Improve Your Mental Health

The keto diet boosts the consumption of beneficial fats such as omega-3s, which can improve learning abilities and mood.

The diet stimulates the formation of beta-hydroxybutyrate, a type of ketone. It aids in long-term memory function.

Keeps Yeast Infections at Bay

Yeast infections thrive in urine due to the presence of glucose. The ketogenic diet decreases candida or yeast infections by lowering the amount of glucose excreted in the urine.

Furthermore, including coconut oil in your keto diet provides your body with lauric acid. As a result, it possesses antibacterial capabilities and can kill the fungus that is causing the sickness.

What Is the Purpose of a Ketogenic Diet?

In recent years, the ketogenic diet has gained popularity. People have been using it extensively to lose weight swiftly. People use the keto diet to lose weight regardless of their health conditions. The underlying goal of the popular ketogenic diet, on the other hand, is much less well-known.

The ketogenic diet was first used to treat epilepsy in children in 1921. A high-fat, low-carb diet may prevent seizures, according to research. The low carbohydrate content is advantageous since it may lessen brain activity. This prevents seizures from occurring.

According to research, the famous keto diet may also help with other medical ailments.

  • Dementia
  • Alzheimer’s illness
  • Injury to the brain
  • Acne\sCancer
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) Cancer
  • Disorders of metabolism

The ketogenic diet, on the other hand, should only be started when prescribed by a doctor. A keto diet should be followed for at least 2-3 weeks. The maximum period is 6-12 months. Throughout the course, the physician must closely check the body’s processes.

Who Shouldn’t Try a Ketogenic Diet?

According to research, persons with certain conditions should avoid the keto diet. It could have a negative impact on your health.

  • Diseases of the liver
  • Osteoporosis
  • Diabetic kidney disease
  • Fat metabolism genetic flaws
  • Carnitine insufficiency Pancreatitis
  • Porphyria

If you have any of these problems, you should avoid the keto diet. Discuss other methods of weight loss with your medical healthcare provider and dietician.

Things to Keep in Mind When Following a Ketogenic Diet

When attempting the keto diet, avoid grains, sweets, tubers, fruits, legumes, sauces, and alcohol. Stick to low-carb meals and keep an eye out for hidden sugars on food labels.

Any severe dietary changes should be avoided. Take it one step at a time and don’t rush. Before beginning a keto diet, plan your meals based on your health and needs. Following a tight carb diet and diving into pasta, cereals, and sandwiches the next day will not work.

Keto newcomers frequently make the error of not drinking enough water. Dehydration is accompanied by a severe drop in carbs. It would be beneficial if you started your morning with a large glass of water. Drinking water on a regular basis throughout the day is also good.

Ketogenic diets should be avoided by people who are underweight or have excessively low weight problems. Carbohydrates are required for energy. As a result, a low-carb diet is harmful to people who are underweight.

Because they are using Metformin pills and other drugs, persons with type 1 or type 2 diabetes should avoid the Keto diet. Metformin drugs are negatively impacted by the Keto diet.

Pregnant and nursing women should avoid keto diet regimens. Going on a low-carb diet during pregnancy may have an impact on the baby’s weight and growth. It may also result in nutritional inadequacies, as the body is unable to meet the dietary requirements of milk production.

In conclusion

The Keto diet consists of a high fat, moderate protein, and low carbohydrate diet. Before embarking on the keto diet, it is critical to consult with a healthcare expert. Weight loss, food, and health are all difficult topics that necessitate proper knowledge.

The strict limitations of the keto diet force your body to begin burning fat for energy. It undoubtedly aids in rapid weight loss. Keto, on the other hand, is not for everyone. Constipation, keto fever, keto breath, mood swings, diarrhoea, cognitive fog, and kidney stress are among adverse effects of the keto diet.

For an optimum dietary fat supply, keto dieters commonly add dairy products such as butter, hard cheese, whipped cream, and Greek yoghurt. You can keep the carb count low as long as it’s unsweetened and free of added sweeteners. Meat, fatty seafood, oils, high-fat dairy, nuts, and berries are all acceptable on a diet. Remember that moderation is vital.

custom keto diet

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q. What foods are permissible on the keto diet?

A ketogenic diet is a low-carbohydrate diet. A keto diet consists of 70% fats, 20% protein, and 10% carbohydrates each day.

Low-carbohydrate foods include fatty seafood, nuts and seeds, dairy and eggs, and keto-friendly veggies such as zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers, cauliflower, and squash.

Q. Can you eat bananas while on a keto diet?

A. No, bananas are high in carbs. Even though bananas are high in nutrients, they cannot be included in a keto diet.

One banana has roughly 31 grammes of carbs, which is nearly the total amount of carbs you can consume each day on the keto diet.

Is peanut butter keto-friendly?

A. You may incorporate peanut butter into your keto diet. The peanut butter, on the other hand, must be plain. You should also eat it in moderation.

Two tablespoons of peanut butter include around 5 grammes of carbs. As a result, you can consume a moderate amount of peanut butter every day without jeopardising your keto diet.

Q. What may I drink while on a keto diet?

A. You can consume keto-friendly liquids such as water, caffeine-free diet Coke, low-carb dairy products such as unsweetened almond milk, zero-carb energy drinks, and keto smoothies made with avocados, egg yolks, and high-fat yoghurt.

Q. Can I drink alcohol while on a keto diet?

A. Drinking alcohol is never a good idea if you want to lose weight and live a healthy lifestyle. The keto diet, on the other hand, does not forbid modest and infrequent alcohol use.

You are free to consume whiskey, gin, rum, or any other pure form of alcohol. Hard liquor, unsweetened wines, and light beer are additional options.

However, you must constantly remember to drink in moderation. Excessive alcohol use is harmful to one’s health.

Q. What can you eat for breakfast if you’re on a keto diet?

A. There are a variety of keto breakfast options available. For breakfast, you might eat three eggs or an omelette. Non-vegetarians can enjoy keto-friendly granola with protein-rich plain yoghurt and fruits such as blackberries, raspberries, and star fruits.

Q. Can you eat bread while on a keto diet?

A. Yes, you can consume bread while on the keto diet. Regular bread, on the other hand, contains a lot of carbohydrates, such as white, oat, and wheat bread. As a result, avoid those breads in favour of gluten-free, high-fiber, low-carbohydrate bread.

Q. Can I eat potatoes while on a keto diet?

A. If you’re following a keto diet, potatoes are a no-no. Potatoes are starchy vegetables with a high carbohydrate content. You can eat potatoes on occasion, but they cannot be a regular part of your keto diet.

Q. Is rice a keto-friendly food?

A. No, rice is not permitted in a ketogenic diet. However, keto-friendly rice known as konjac rice is okay to consume while on the keto diet. It is high in fibre and low in net carbs. As a result, it is an excellent substitute for white rice, and it also tastes nice.

Q. Can you eat spaghetti while on a keto diet?

A. You can eat spaghetti while on the keto diet. However, you must avoid eating typical pasta prepared with wheat flour. There are other alternatives, including spiralized veggie keto pasta substitutes. You may also buy low carb pasta substitutes such as shirataki or kelp noodles.

Q: Are tomatoes keto-friendly?

A. Tomatoes are indeed keto-friendly. Tomatoes are a botanical fruit with only 2-3 grammes of carbs per 100g. As a result, they are low-carb items that are easy to incorporate into your keto diet.

Q. Is cheese permitted in the keto diet?

A. Yes, cheese is a wonderful keto-friendly food. Cheese has a high fat content, a low carbohydrate content, and a moderate protein content. To further reduce carbs, pick tougher cheese, such as parmesan cheese, over soft cheese.

Q. Can you drink milk while on a keto diet?

A. You should avoid drinking dairy milk. Dairy milk is high in carbs. As a result, it is not keto-friendly. However, if you choose to include milk in your diet, make sure you consume it in moderation. This is because milk has a lot of fat and may not function well with a keto diet.

Q. Is it okay to eat mushrooms when on a keto diet?

A. A mushroom is a keto-friendly food. Mushrooms have a low carbohydrate and sugar content. Mushrooms such as oysters, white buttons, shiitake, and portobello are commonly included on keto diets.

Q. Is broccoli a keto food?

A. Broccoli is, in fact, a keto-friendly food. Broccoli has only 4 grammes of net carbohydrates per cup. It also contains a lot of fibre and protein. Broccoli can be used in stews, soups, and casseroles. It tastes wonderful and has a variety of health benefits.

Q. Is it okay to eat onions when on a keto diet?

A. Yes, onions are keto-friendly. Although onions contain no fat, they are a keto-friendly veggie. Every day, consume one-fourth of a red onion. Remember that onion is one of those keto vegetables where carbs may quickly mount up.

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