Takeaway: It’s possible to be vegan and do nutritional ketosis but you will need to do some research, planning/calculating, and self-experimentation to make sure you are meeting all of your requirements. You may also want to include a multivitamin containing vitamin B12 and a vegetarian omega-3 supplement (such as flaxseed oil or algal DHA such as ‘Neuromins’) to ensure you are meeting all of your nutrient needs!


Using a flax seed egg is the perfect vegan substitution when a recipe calls for an egg. Simply combine 1 tablespoon of ground flax seed meal with 3 tablespoons of water and let sit at room temperature for a least 15 minutes. For every egg a recipe calls for, you will need to use this ratio, so if you need 3 eggs, use 3 tablespoons of flax meal and 9 tablespoons of water.
Top Tip: Move more to stress less. "I've learned to exercise instead of eating when I'm stressed," Sarah says. "I've started walking two to three miles outside two to three times a week. The fresh air instantly puts me in a good mood, and I think of it as time to unplug. Now I put exercise on my to-do list just like any task—it's about committing to myself. My mom bought a Fitbit and aims for 10,000 steps per day."
I get asked for meatless keto recipes for the low carb vegetarian all the time, and with the help of my assistant Stacey, I finally put together a collection of the 101 Best Keto Vegetarian Recipes we could find!  We will be adding more meatless low carb recipes to a Keto Vegetarian Recipes Pinterest Board in the coming months so be sure to follow IBIH on Pinterest if you aren’t already!

The biggest thing to watch out for (aside from keto flu, which you should read about just above this section) when it comes to vegetarian keto is vitamin and other nutritional deficiencies. This is something that vegetarians and vegans are all too familiar with. Before getting any kind of vitamin supplement, make sure you consult with a doctor and have them check the vitamin levels in your bloodstream.


Meat is a cornerstone of the ketogenic diet, but that doesn’t mean the diet is off-limits for the vegetarian population. As the high-fat, low-carb approach has grown in popularity, many vegetarians have wanted in on the hype and have found a way to make it work for them, tweaking the typical keto diet menu and food list to fit within their meat-free lifestyles.
The best option is to, of course, read your nutrition labels thoroughly and track your nutrients using one of the apps mentioned here. For vegetables or foods that you pick up at the farmer's market or other food that lacks nutritional information, this spreadsheet covers the carb count for a huge number of foods and drinks. This spreadsheet will save you so much time.
When it comes to buying keto-friendly vegan dairy products, make sure you are not getting any extra added sugar, hidden carbs, or unhealthy ingredients like hydrogenated oils. Some of these products may also have “gums” in them like agar agar or guar gum. These compounds are used to make the product creamier, and they are safe for most people. However, some people may get gastrointestinal discomfort from eating them, so look out for gums when switching to vegan dairy products.
"I was 251 pounds at the time, so walking laps around my neighborhood was all I could muster at first. I knew I had a lot to lose, but I was starting at square one. To stay motivated, I celebrated each 10-pound loss with a new clothing item. As I slimmed down, I noticed shopping was fun again. At one point, I tried on a pair of size 16 jeans and I wasn't sure if they would fit. (I started out a size 22.) When I was able to zip and button them, I stared at the mirror with my mouth open—I couldn't believe it! I was so excited that I ran out of
Another trick to encourage mindful eating is to focus on the taste of food instead of the activity you're doing while eating (like staring at a TV screen or reading emails). "Cultivate [your] taste buds by focusing on the first three to six bites of food," says Chere Bork, MS, RD, a speaker and wellness coach in Minneapolis. "Taste buds are chemical sensors that get tired very quickly, so unless you're very hungry, the first few bites of a food will taste better than the next few bites. After a larger amount, you may actually have very little taste experience left." By savoring the early bites, especially when it comes to rich foods like chocolate and cheese, you will satisfy hunger and cravings without eating large portions.
Some do, and some don't. Similarly to sugar alcohols, different sweeteners have different glycemic indexes. Powdered versions of artificial sweeteners like splenda and even natural ones like stevia have added carbs that come from maltodextrin and other fillers, so stay away from those. Here are the best sweeteners to use while on vegetarian keto (all of them have a glycemic index of zero):
"I always told myself that once things slowed down at work, I’d try to lose weight. The only problem was that work never slowed down. After being overweight for several years, I finally decided to take action, but had no idea how to begin. I thought it would be a long and difficult process to slim down. Luckily, I was wrong. It turned out to be much easier than I expected and I have now lost over 40 pounds!
You've been faithful to a healthier eating plan and working out at the gym, and the number on the scale is even going down. You notice your clothes buttoning a little easier, less bloat to your belly and a slimmer appearance to your face. Whether other people notice these changes really depends on several factors, including their relationship with you and your starting size. You usually notice that you've lost weight far sooner than other people.
Jay Te thank you for pointing out the health concerns of some of the recommendations on the site. I have to admit that a red flag went off for me but still is unsure of piecing together a healthy meal plan for vegetarians or pescetarian. I have to admit I wasn’t impressed with the meal plans here on my own account of not liking several of the ingredients. Can you recommend a healthy list that is not in contradiction to health risk for others like me? Thank you.
Too much stress could be thwarting your weight loss efforts. “Cortisol is the stress hormone in your body that glues itself onto fat and keeps it on your hips, abs and thighs,” says Jillian Moriarty, a certified yoga instructor and owner of Happily Ever Active in Wayzata, Minn. To decrease cortisol and decrease fat, try this quick time out every day (especially when stressed), recommends Moriarty. Sit comfortably, close your eyes, and choose a mantra such as ‘relax’ or ‘let go’ and repeat it in your mind as you take slow, deep breaths for about 10 minutes.

What’s more, it could be particularly startling for vegans. Fortification Lauderdale, Florida– based Jaime Mass, RDN, author of Jaime Mass Nutritionals, LLC, says vegans usually moved toward becoming “pasta-tarians.” Instead of supplanting meat with sound plant-based nourishments and entire grains, many loads up on pasta, saltines, and other carb-overwhelming things. Changing to keto could be troublesome for these pasta-tarians, yet it could likewise be useful in helping them cut back on handled carbs.

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.
Walking felt like the easiest change to make, so I started going out near my home for just 10 minutes a day on a local trail along a river. Being in nature was key. Gradually, I increased from 10 minutes to 2 hours a day and added hilly hikes on the weekends. While I strolled, I listened to podcasts and soaked up the scenery. My cholesterol and blood pressure are now in healthy ranges—without medication. It's wild how much I've changed, not just physically but emotionally too. I remember trying to hike when I was heavy—my knees hurt and I could barely breathe. I thought, I'll just look at nature; I don't have to walk in it. I can't believe the limited mindset I had. What was I thinking? I feel so much more confident and capable now.
In summary, it is both safe and reasonable to consume sugar alcohols. If you're looking to buy sugar alcohols, try to prioritize finding ones that have a low glycemic index so that you don’t get kicked out of ketosis. Erythritol is available from multiple suppliers on Amazon. The next in the pecking order would be mannitol, but it's not widely available. Xylitol is another option on Amazon. Do some research on them and find the one that works best for you!
Regardless of whether or not you can process gluten, seitan is very high in carbs. I don’t touch it. Also, beans or any fruit other than a few berries. Certainly not a tennis ball worth of fruit and under no circumstances a hockey puck worth of carbs!! Also, if it weren’t for heavy whipping cream, cream cheese and butter, I’d have a terrible time getting the fat and calories I need, so 2 dice worth is no dice. If I followed this advice I would never be in ketosis. I think the author needs more experience.
Some do, and some don't. Similarly to sugar alcohols, different sweeteners have different glycemic indexes. Powdered versions of artificial sweeteners like splenda and even natural ones like stevia have added carbs that come from maltodextrin and other fillers, so stay away from those. Here are the best sweeteners to use while on vegetarian keto (all of them have a glycemic index of zero):
If your starting weight falls into the obese range on the body mass index, it is not impossible for your weight to change up to 20 pounds in a single day. But that amount of weight loss may not be very noticeable on a larger frame. However, if you are a petite woman and you lose 20 pounds that amount of weight loss can be the difference between several clothing sizes. It would be nearly impossible (and terribly unsafe), however, for a tiny woman to lose that much weight in a day. If you are smaller, you are likely to have less weight to lose and it will come off a little bit slower. When your starting body size is larger, you are likely to lose more weight at a faster rate—especially in the early days of in your program.
MacDowell has been following the veggie lover ketogenic diet for a long time. She’d been a veggie lover for quite a while before that yet chose to attempt keto in view of weight reduction. Some examination recommends the ketogenic diet might be helpful, therefore: An investigation distributed in May 2013 in the British Journal of Nutrition found the ketogenic diet prompted more prominent weight reduction than a low-fat diet and could be valuable in battling corpulence.
Hell9 .. just diagnosed with a meningioma which my neurologist says has exacerbated epilepsy/partial brain seizures. He wants to put me on seizure meds but I am seriously against medication with short and long term side effects. I’ve been off and on ovo-vegetarian/vegan throughout my life and right now I can barely eat chicken so nearly ovo-vegetarian again,

"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."

“The most rewarding part of running for me is the feeling of accomplishment that comes with it, and pushing myself beyond what l ever thought was possible. It has been rewarding to see a transformation in my body, and to feel a transformation mentally and emotionally. My husband sporadically runs and he used to tell me that I should run, too. At the time, I was more than 100 pounds overweight, and that seemed like a ridiculous thing to say. I recall telling my husband back then that, ‘I will never run.’ I laugh now because he rarely runs, and I run all the time.”
aThese results were from a 56-week trial of adults with excess weight (BMI ≥27) with at least 1 weight-related condition, or obesity (BMI ≥30), not including patients with type 2 diabetes. On average, 27% of people on Saxenda® and 34% on placebo did not complete the study. In the study, 62% of patients on Saxenda® lost ≥5% of their body weight (vs 34% placebo) and 34% lost ≥10% body weight (vs 15% placebo). Significant weight loss was only evaluated at 56 weeks, as per study design.
After her first pregnancy with her daughter in 2003, Cloutier hit 301 lbs., and was ready for a change. “I didn’t want to die,” she says. “I wanted to watcher grow up and give her healthy habits.” By working out with a trainer and choosing healthier meals, she successfully lost 151 lbs., and maintained a healthy weight through her second pregnancy in 2008. 
For this reason, it is best to buy RSPO-certified or Certified Sustainable Palm Oil (CSPO) products. The companies that produce these products are approved by the RSPO (the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil) for using sustainable practices that meet strict environmental and social criteria. By opting for RSPO-certified or CSPO products, you will be casting a vote for sustainable oil producers that are dedicated to protecting the environment.
Sarah’s Freezer to Slow Cooker ebooks have been a fantastic addition to my meal plans.  They make meal planning easy and my family happy. I love the way each recipe is laid out, with a shopping list and ingredient prep list, along with cooking instructions. Sarah’s done all the hard work for me!  The recipes have used have all been delicious and easily adaptable to my family’s taste and the number of people I’m serving.

For those already following a vegan diet, it can be especially hard to adapt to a low carb, high-fat diet. But once you know a few good substitutions, and have some amazing new vegan keto recipes under your belt, it doesn’t have to be difficult to eat well on a vegan keto diet. I’ve compiled 20 of my favorite plant-based keto recipes below to give you a head start!
These pecan pie cookies check all the boxes. They're keto, low carb, vegan, paleo, and gluten-free! Not to mention that this is also a keto no-bake cookies recipe—could these cookies get any easier (or more delicious)? Probably not. This keto cookie recipe only requires 6 ingredients and also offers some flexibility and tips if you decide to switch up which type of nuts you use!
Following the ovo-lacto vegetarians are the ovo vegetarians. In keto diets, and especially in vegetarian keto diets, eggs are a superfood. They have plenty of protein, lots of fat, and almost zero carbs! Meanwhile, milk, while often rich in fats, also has quite a bit of sugar in the form of lactose, which makes it not as keto-friendly. Cheeses, however, are a fantastic keto food that lacto vegetarians have access to.
Anyone following a plant-based ketogenic diet will be well familiar with zoodles. These veggie noodles are supposed to take the place of pasta or wheat noodles in your favorite dishes – but they often leave you wanting. Well, no more my friends! This is a vegan zucchini recipe that’s well worth dusting off your spiralizer for! It’s fresh, flavorsome, and feisty. The secret is in the sauce…

In this study, each experiment that tested a sugar alcohol against glucose was collected and grouped in order to find an average consensus. Notice that glucose's glycemic index is 100, which makes for easy comparison (table sugar is about 63, for example). As an example of the comparison, look at the first line of the table. You can see that 4 studies compared erythritol with glucose, and the studies found that erythritol had a glycemic index response of zero, on average. This means that of all known studies up to 2003, erythritol did not cause any increase in blood sugar. Xylitol, however, did increase blood sugar, but only has a glycemic index of 13. It is clear that sugar alcohols have some effect on blood sugar, the extent to which is unclear.
One of the coolest things that intermittent fasting does is trigger a phenomenon in your body called autophagy. Autophagy is a process in which your body recycles and consumes its own cells and proteins in a healthy manner. Often it means that damaged cells are turned into energy for your body, which is the equivalent of cleaning out the depths of your kitchen cupboards. For more on this check out this article.
In Minneapolis, Minnesota, a survey revealed that 94 percent of residents would be willing to buy more fresh produce if it were stocked at local corner stores. In response to this, the city launched the Minneapolis Healthy Corner Store Program that requires convenience stores to stock fresh produce. This trend might be spreading to other areas in the coming years
People say ACV can act as an appetite suppressant, so I tried to drink it before eating anything—but that was hard. Sometimes I finished my ACV drink while also throwing back coffee or nibbling on breakfast. Even if the ACV didn't directly slash my appetite, I hoped the extra hydration would make me a little less hungry. Unfortunately, though, I didn’t notice any difference in my hunger levels or how much food I was eating. Oh, well.
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 beauty of a ketogenic diet is that you often don’t need to be too exact with your calories. You can just keep carbs low, fat high, and everything works itself out over time. If you want to figure out how much you should be eating(it’s worth knowing), then try our Keto Macro Calculator. ​It takes about 3 minutes to calculate and there is a how-to video explaining how to come up with an accurate calculation.
If you are a petite woman who is five feet tall, a ten-pound weight loss may mean that you've lost up to ten percent of your body weight. That amount of weight loss will be very noticeable and can change her clothing size up to two sizes. But if you are a very tall athletic woman, a ten-pound loss probably won't even be noticeable and may not change your clothing size at all.
This content is strictly the opinion of Dr. Josh Axe and is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of medical advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Dr. Axe nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any nutrition, supplement or lifestyle program.

I hope I’ve shown you that you can have a lot of fun exploring the ins and outs of vegetarian keto. There are tons of good foods and recipes out there just waiting to be tried. Shop local if you can, supporting local farmers is great for the environment. Don’t be afraid of meat substitutes. Go crazy with the cheese. Listen to your body. Most people, upon switching off from keto, say they feel sick after eating carbs, even once they reach their goal weight. Don’t get down if you mess up, just get back on the horse.

Walnuts are a great addition to this chili from Abbey’s Kitchen, added texture and as a great source of monounsaturated fats. Black beans are a great source of fibre, which can often be lacking on a keto diet and help to bulk this out into a hearty, filling meal. Adding dark chocolate to the source gives additional richness, and paired with some avocado or guac on the side this is a great, flavorful high fat meal without the need for any meat.


“The day I met Samantha, it changed my life. Before I met her, I felt invisible because of the continuing frustrations I had with my weight. Now I don’t feel invisible anymore! ** I WAS BUSTING OUT OF A 14, BUT NOW I CAN EASILY FIT INTO A SIZE 6! ** I was consumed by negative feelings about myself. I would fight myself all day long between eating, starving and binging; caught in a circle of guilt. Thoughts of food were obsessive, food was my consolation. My very first visit with Samantha changed my life. She had so much energy and this amazing belief in her own ability to help me be successful. She made me believe that I too could realize my personal goal, with a lot of hard work. I have lost 30 pounds and 50” in 12 weeks! It’s not just about reaching a number on the scale. I have changed inside; the way I think about food and myself. I’m a different, more confident person now with tons of energy. I have never felt healthier in my life. I have never been more motivated. Nothing tempts me. The old me always gave into temptation. The new me is excited to be alive and feeling good. My clothes are too big! I had to go shopping! And . . .the best part is I don’t feel invisible anymore!” - Laura 52
“I was supposed to be a leader of soldiers, and I could barely pass the Army physical test,” Cines — who weighed 200 lbs. at her highest — told PEOPLE. “I was embarrassed. My soldiers looked up to me and I had to counsel them when they couldn’t meet the standards, and yet I myself couldn’t meet the standards. I just felt like a hypocrite and a fake.”
One solid piece of advice is to, no matter how tempting it is, try to avoid telling anyone that you've started vegetarian keto. I know many people use this as a tactic to publicly commit themselves to a diet, but a niche diet like this comes under a lot of ridicule. Having people intruding on and questioning your personal choices so much can be discouraging and frankly, annoying. Share at your own risk.
As with any healthy diet plan, and especially a vegetarian one, be sure you're consuming a diversity of plant-based whole foods like fruits and vegetables. Popular vegetables to eat as a part of the keto diet are green peppers, spinach, lettuce, green beans, and cabbage, among others. Try to avoid starchy and carb-heavy vegetables like potatoes. As for fruit, some people recommend avoiding too many berries or citrus fruits, which contain natural sugars (aka carbohydrates). However, this doesn't mean you should avoid them completely. As always, eating a colorful and varied diet, no matter the plan you're following, is key to maintaining good health and wellness. If you need some inspiration when dreaming up new vegetarian/keto recipes, invest in a cookbook (the one above includes a 30-day meal plan).

I have achieved all my goals and more…I have lost 35 pounds and have gone from a size 12/13 to a size 5/6. My waist size has changed dramatically – when I began seeing Samantha, I was squeezing myself into a size 32 waist in jeans. Now, I can easily fit into a size 27 which feels fantastic! I tell Samantha and Chris that they are the best thing that ever happened to me and I mean that from the bottom of my heart! I feel like a totally different person now than I did 6 months ago. I am actually excited for beach season this year and I cannot wait to go bathing suit shopping. I can’t remember another time in my life in which I had more confidence in my appearance. I have changed my lifestyle and my entire view on health and fitness. I love the food I eat and I am never hungry! I enjoy exercising now and have all the energy I need to get through the day and more. I feel that I am living to my true potential; I have a healthy body, mind and spirit. Samantha gave me the tools and guidance I needed to change my life and I embraced them whole-heartedly. I can say that, without a doubt, I feel 100% better than I did before I started with her. I start each day by looking at myself in the mirror and actually being HAPPY with the person I see looking back at me. Now, I look the way I have always wanted to look and my husband can’t believe the results either! I can honestly say that my results have surpassed even my expectations. Don’t spend another day feeling bad about yourself or your appearance. You have the power to change your life for the better and to maintain an active lifestyle. I will never allow myself to go back to my old habits. I am a new person thanks to Samantha and Chris at Pure Health & Fitness Studios!" --- Sara
Salad bowl again, this time a little more decked out! Spinach & arugula base (covered in mct oil, apple cider vinegar & @bragglivefoods nutritional yeast!) topped with 2 radishes, 1/4 cup of raw broccoli, 1/4 cup of red cabbage, 1/2 avocado, a @fieldroast field burger and 1oz of @treelinecheese cashew scallion cheese! I have never been so in love with a salad 😍- Meal Totals: 641.7 cals / 43g fat /42.2g protein /18 Net Carbs

That said, meat substitutes are easily the most expensive buys on vegetarian keto. Check your local superstore or health food market’s prices, compare to Amazon’s selections and prices, and make a decision that best fits your lifestyle. ALWAYS make sure to double check the carb count too - some of the substitutes have added sugars and carbs while others do not.

My weight loss has definitely slowed like it normally does after the first 2 weeks, but I also think I was getting a little too comfortable with my cheat days.  I let them happen more frequently than I should have.  So now, going into the month of February, I’ll be more diligent about not cheating unless it’s the right day, rather than just deciding on a whim to have a cheat day, just because I wanted what everyone else was having.  I’m going to be traveling to Breckenridge, Colorado for a ski trip this month, so I’m sure that the trip will be difficult on me.  At least, I’ll probably burn a lot of it while I’m skiing. #ketoacidosis
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