Fresh vegetables. Veggies are full of fiber and nutrients, so if you enjoy them, your keto journey will be much easier. Some vegetables have tons of versatility, like cauliflower, which can be blended into a rice alternative, cut up and baked as fake wings, mashed to make “mashed potatoes,” etc. Other great veggies for keto are mushrooms, romaine lettuce, spaghetti squash, and broccoli. Paired with the seasonings and ingredients above, you can make some awesome meals.
One of the more popular diets trending nowadays is the ketogenic diet. The diet requires you to reduce your carbohydrate intake and in turn, increase your fat intake. The aim of the diet is to get your body to use fat instead of glucose as energy and fueling your body until the next meal. Apart from weight loss, the ketogenic diet has been found to be helpful in managing blood sugar levels, reduces the risk of obesity, epilepsy, Alzheimer's disease, polycystic ovary syndrome and even some types of cancer. Some healthy foods to consume on a keto diet are starchy vegetables, coconut oil, cheese, sour cream, avocado, meat and poultry and high-fat dairy products.
But what if a vegetarian decides to go keto? Do people risk developing deficiencies and side effects by following a vegetarian ketogenic diet? More importantly, is this type of diet even sustainable? The short answer is yes – a keto vegetarian diet can be nutritious, sustainable, and healthy when you plan it right. It can also be satisfying enough to make you stick for the long haul.
As far as calories are concerned, you will come to find that many of the high-carb foods you are cutting out were the same foods that contributed so many calories to your diet. A restriction in food groups naturally leads to a reduction in calories. Ketosis also suppresses appetite, however, so you really need to make sure you're bringing in enough calories to keep your body happy and healthy.
The ketogenic diet is a high-fat diet, but it’s crucial to be smart about what types of fat you’re including. Filling up on fatty foods like processed faux meats may help you hit your goals for fat intake, but they can also negate the potential health-promoting properties of the ketogenic diet, so make sure you’re opting for more healthy keto friendly fats instead.
The keto diet works well for vegetarians. Sometimes a vegetarian diet ends up being high in carbohydrates if it’s lacking in protein. A lack of protein can cause you to crave carbs to feel full, resulting in weight gain and low energy. On the flip side, a low carb vegetarian diet can help you get back on track with your weight and help you maintain a healthy lifestyle overall. It can curb your cravings and help you get into the habit of eating healthy foods that will fill you up, without going overboard.
Unfortunately, carbs are secretly in everything. Once you start consistently reading the nutritional labels of your foods, you'll realize that food manufacturers are constantly trying to put sugar in the weirdest foods. Chili, peanut butter, fake meat, etc. sometimes have significant grams of sugar in them that could add up over the course of a day.
As with any new diet, you should consult a professional before committing, as it might not necessarily apply to extenuating health circumstances. It's also helpful to hear an expert's opinion firsthand. As for Smith, she's not entirely sold on the keto diet in the first place. "Some principles of the keto diet can be helpful," she says, such as few refined carbs and sugars. "When done right (more plant-based that is) it can be a great way to get some healthy fats in, but I don't find, especially for women, that it contributes to significant weight loss if that's a goal." While we're on the topic, it's also possible that you might need supplementation to your diet to achieve utmost wellness. "this is case by case, but often, in general, vegans/vegetarians need iron, B complex, b12, extra protein, and potentially zinc and biotin as well," Smith tells us. This is just another reason consulting an expert can be so helpful.
“The weight starting coming off,” she says. “I remember I lost 9 lbs. my first week. After I had lost 100 lbs., I started trying more adventurous exercise. I became fascinated by fitness and seeing what new things I could accomplish with my body. I do things that I never dreamed were possible like running races, lifting heavy weights, and completing a sprint triathlon.”
A better alternative is to eat before going out, bring your own meals to work, or suggest local restaurants that you know have options for you. In order to avoid being super awkward, don’t stuff yourself before you go out, just eat enough to feel fulfilled, then you can order some side dishes/vegetables/salad or a single veggie burger without the bun. Most places are starting to adapt to the veg crowd, so you should be able to find at least something to nibble on, but always have a list of good places ready that you can defer to if asked. Indian restaurants are great for veg keto, same for Middle Eastern restaurants.
Despite the fact that MacDowell has stayed with it for so long, she concedes along these lines of eating can be extreme in social circumstances. “It’s not just the response of your relatives who will reveal to you eating that much fat will execute you, yet going out for hors-d’oeuvres and drinks with companions is testing,” she says. “You figure out how to function around it, yet there’s an expectation to absorb information without a doubt.”
Vegans consume no animal products. Like vegetarians, they don’t eat meat, poultry, or fish, but they also avoid dairy, eggs, and other foods that contain even trace amounts of animal ingredients. Most vegans won’t eat gelatin (made from bones), casein (a milk protein), and fish oil supplements, or refined sugar (some brands of which use cow bones as a whitening agent).
"Before I finally made a phone call to Samantha, I had seen her articles and advertisements in our local paper for several years! During those years, I gained about 10 pounds each year with a combination of bad eating habits, a stressful job and no exercise. At the beginning of last year I went on a cruise with my mother and when I got back I looked at the photos we took. I could not believe the person in the photos was me - how had I become so out of shape? I thought I didn't have time to work out but Samantha convinced me that I had to make time and also make the changes in my eating habits to become healthy and lose weight. The time I have spent with Samantha has been one of the best investments I've made in my life - she has inspired me to eat healthier and how to work out effectively to lose the fat I needed to lose without losing muscle. She has shown me a way that I can follow for the rest of my life. I have gone from a size 14 to a size 4 in 7 months and I've lost over 138 inches all over my entire body! I feel better and have more energy than I have in years. I encourage you to give her a call today - don't waste another day! You can do it too with her help."
One of the best ways to get cheap groceries is to get a lot of them at once. Keep in mind this only works for some foods, like things that are easily frozen or don’t spoil quickly. Usually there will be deals that look like 10 for $10 or something to that effect. For deals like this, you do not have to buy 10 items to get the discount. This is a marketing trick (an effective one at that) that is used to get you to buy more than you need.
These omega-3 fats provide building blocks for cellular structures throughout the body and aid in the prevention of cardiovascular disease. Fish oil is the most common source of DHA and EPA, but a good vegan source—and one that, arguably, offers a better concentration of DHA—is algae (which is where those oily fish get their omega-3s from anyway). By supplementing with algae oil, you’re effectively cutting out the middle-fish. Aim for about 300mg/day.
For anyone following any vegan diet, and athletes especially, the question always comes up: “How do you get enough protein?” Nelson recommends about 0.7g of protein per pound of your goal body weight as a baseline daily intake for active people—and most nutritionists recommend up to one gram per pound if you’re weight training. (Goal body weight means the amount you want to weigh—not the number that currently comes up on the scale. So, if you weigh 205 pounds but remember looking and feeling your best when you weighed 175, eat 0.7g of protein x 175, or about 120 grams daily.)
“If you are considering starting any kind of ketogenic diet, you should discuss it first with your doctor. The diet may be harmful if you have existing kidney, liver, or heart disease. If you have diabetes or high blood pressure and are on medications, you should be in close contact with your physician to monitor changes and adjust medications as needed,” Vizthum says.
Opting for high-fat plant foods like avocados, coconuts, and nut butters is one way to meet your keto macros on a vegetarian ketogenic diet. Making sure you're eating high-quality protein is also important. But one of the biggest concerns on a vegetarian ketogenic diet is omega-3 fatty acids intake. These essential nutrients are difficult to obtain on plant-based diets, so make sure to eat foods rich in this fatty acid or go for supplements.
Tossing everything in your pantry out all at once is a good way to waste money and cause a Ben & Jerry’s meltdown, but gradually replacing processed foods with fresh alternatives helps curb cravings and hunger, says Begun. “Highly processed foods are low in nutrients, causing the body to seek more food to find the nutrients it needs, which leads to a vicious cycle of overeating.” You don’t have to empty the pantry all at once, but slowly start making swaps like fresh fruit and yogurt for protein bars (which can contain as much sugar as a candy bar) or hummus and fresh veggies instead of nutritionally devoid pretzels.
According to nutritionist Isabel Smith, MS, RD, CDN, the ketogenic diet "is basically low-carb, high-fat, and moderate protein." Generally, it consists of 70% fat, 20% protein, and 10% carbohydrates. The goal of this diet is to put the body in a state of ketosis, which means you're body burns fat as its main energy source—not carbs or protein. People say it could aid in healthy weight loss, decrease inflammation, and more. But what many people don't know is if it can pair with a vegetarian lifestyle since it so strictly emphasizes fat and protein over carbohydrate consumption. It's no secret that many followers of the keto diet load up on meat and fish, which makes the diet seem rather murky and unapproachable for vegetarians.
Here's a keto, dairy-free and egg-free recipe for shortbread cookies. Yes, you read that right. Keeping this keto cookie recipe dairy-free means that it's one of the rare keto shortbreads that skips on butter! Cristina points out that chocolate and hazelnut are a match made in heaven and I couldn't agree more. This recipe is delicious, easy, and comes together in approximately 30 minutes. Perfect if you're whipping up a last-minute batch for an upcoming cookie exchange!
“It’s been a real confidence builder to realize that I can set goals and accomplish them. I was never athletic as a kid, and now as a person eligible for Social Security, I’m signed up for two 10 mile races and a half marathon in 2017—and I know I’ll finish them. As a matter of fact, running has improved my mental health as much or more as my physical health. Running is the one thing that I do just for me, which is needed in a life full of stress.”
That said, a recurring mistake among vegetarians who go keto is incorporating too many vegetable-based carbohydrates, without even realizing. You’ve got to be quite vigilant of all your carb and protein sources following a vegetarian keto diet meal plan, as most vegetarians tend to source their protein from foods like legumes and grains, which aren’t supported on the vegetarian keto diet. If you’re following a diet that’s strictly plant-based, then you’ll have to be even more mindful.