Smart keto foods
A ketogenic (or ‘keto’) diet is a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet, which means the body burns fat as its main source of fuel and breaks it down into ‘ketone bodies’ (or ‘ketones’) in a process called ketosis, leading to rapid weight loss.
A lot of tasty foods are OK for keto eaters – avocado, fish, and butter, for example. Some other delicious foods might be keto friendly, but people who’ve had weight-loss success on the keto diet think you should avoid them anyway. Here’s why.
People on the ketogenic (keto) diet are fastidious carbohydrate counters. After all, most keto eaters aim to eat around 20 net – or total – carbs in a day. With a number that low, every single bite counts. Low- and no-carb foods may be particularly alluring for that reason, but health coach, Jessica Rosen, says you should be wary. “Not all zero-carbohydrate foods are smart choices for a keto dieter,” Rosen says. “Artificial sweeteners may not have any carbs or calories, but they can negatively impact the healthy bacteria in your gut. That can lead to fat storage and digestive issues,” she says. “Degrading one’s gut bacteria can be particularly detrimental if you’re eating a diet high in difficult-to-digest proteins and fats.”
If you assume the keto diet consists of eating limitless breakfast meats, your idea of healthy keto eating may need some fine-tuning. “Processed meats such as sausage, hot dogs, bacon, and tinned meats should be avoided as much as possible as they are loaded with carcinogens,” Rosen says.
“These processed meats have zero carbs so people think they are fine to eat on keto,” says keto expert and global integrative health coach Krissa Long. “But these ultra-processed meats typically contain nitrites. When nitrites are exposed to high heat in the presence of protein – that is, the meats they have been added to – they can turn into compounds called nitrosamines, which are known carcinogens.” Rosen advises you instead pick “organic, grass-fed meat whenever possible.” It will help make sure you get all the benefits of the keto diet.