**Even though they’re not derived from animals and are high in fat, oils such as canola, corn, rapeseed, and margarine are highly processed and have a poor ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids. They promote inflammation in the body. Because they have low smoke points, these oils are also terrible choices for cooking. High heat will turn the fats in the oil rancid, and make it even more unhealthy, causing damage to your heart, neurological problems, and other health woes. Always cook with saturated fats, such as those found in coconut and red palm oil.
Fat is important on the keto diet, but especially so if you are vegan or vegetarian. “Aim to get 75 percent or more of your calories from plant-based fats like coconut oil, coconut cream/butter, MCT oil, olive oil, avocado, and—in lesser amounts—nuts and seeds,” says Dr. Axe. “Keep nut and seed consumption to about 1/4 cup per day (or two tablespoons of nut butter), since these do provide some carbs and can also be hard to digest in large amounts.” To help with absorption of minerals, he recommends soaking or sprouting nuts first.
There are a lot of you out there who hate on Tofu, and all soy products for that matter, but we are tofu advocates! Tofu is not only high in protein, and relatively high in fat, but it's low in carbs, which makes for a great protein source on a ketogenic diet. It's a good source of essential vitamins, such as magnesium, calcium and iron and absorbs flavors really well so whether or not you're a great cook, cooking with tofu is cooking made easy!
You don't ignore the calories in a giant muffin, but that specialty coffee may not always get the same consideration. Solid foods aren't the only hiding place for weight-gain culprits—liquids are diet derailers too. "A 20-ounce nonfat latte contains 200 calories, but the same size coffee with a splash of nonfat milk or soy milk has 25," Beller says. If you're still skeptical that drinks are wreaking havoc on your daily calorie allowance, journal them and you might be surprised.
This is going to be tough, but always ask your server for help. Usually they’ll be more than happy to help you find what you need (especially since they’re expecting a tip). Look out for side/garnishing sauces or glazes, many of which will contain a lot of sugar. Most restaurants have their nutritional information online somewhere, so take a look at their options online before you go or on your phone while you’re there.
As, yes, the age-old question: but where do you get your protein? If you’ve been plant-based for any amount of time, you’ve likely heard this asked in at least five different ways. At least here in North America, it seems as though people really struggle to wrap their heads around the idea that you can get enough protein without eating meat, dairy or eggs. This issue becomes especially pronounced when we talk about vegan keto diets.
Dr. Axe recommends getting no more than 20 percent of your daily calories from plant-based sources of proteins, since eating too much protein will interfere with ketosis. “Most beans and legumes will contribute too many carbs to your diet and too little protein,” he says. “The best sources of low-carb protein are plant-based protein powders (like hemp, brown rice, or pea protein) and fermented soy products like tempeh.” Other plant-based sources of protein in your diet can include nutritional yeast, nuts and seeds, and even vegetables.
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Snacks are very important when you are on the keto diet. It’s often the time between lunch and dinner when you can slip up and ruin your diet. These keto snack crackers can be stored in a zip-top bag for 5 days and are the perfect thing to munch on at work or school when you get a hankering. If you need more keto snack ideas, then check out our spinach and feta muffins and our low carb cheesy cauliflower tot recipe.
"At 25, I was diagnosed with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and prediabetes, but I figured that was the norm because my family has a history of heart disease. Then one day I was sitting on the couch watching my 2-year-old daughter play. I realized that if I continued down that path, she would follow in my footsteps. Right then and there I decided to create a healthy new family legacy."