Ketogenic diets originated in the 1920s as a treatment for epilepsy, but they’ve since been credited for promoting a number of health benefits ranging from improved insulin sensitivity to everyday mental clarity, in addition to fast weight loss. Strict ketogenic—or “keto”—dieters limit carbohydrate intake to about 5% of their daily calories while keeping protein intake at around 20%. Fats, then, make up close to 75% of their calories. (For more details on setting up various ketogenic diets, see our guide HERE.)
Cutting out grains, rice, bread, and pasta will reduce your carb intake substantially, but you’ll also have to cut way back on nearly all fruits (exceptions are in the food list above, though even those should be eaten sparingly). Starchy vegetables like potatoes and yams are out, too. And the sugary dressings and sauces you may be so accustomed to that you don’t even question them anymore… well, start questioning them.
If you’re longing for carbs so badly that you feel your resolve to stay on the diet is breaking, it’s possible to trick your brain that you’re eating them by making approved foods look more like your starchy favorites. Cauliflower can be grated into “rice,” or boiled and mashed like potatoes. You can slice zucchini into noodles to (sort of) replicate pasta. See “Vegan Substitutions for the Keto Diet” below.
In contrast to the typical, animal based keto diet with it’s high fat levels, a typical vegan diet often consists of a significant portion of grains and high calorie carbohydrates, often with a high carbohydrate to fat ratio. If we’re going to adapt a vegan diet to be keto friendly we need to really up our intake of a selection of higher fat vegetables etc. and cut down on carb heavy ones. Avocados and nuts are great sources of healthy fats to include along with nut and olive oils, and coconut (For more avocado recipes try this round up for some great ideas).
According to a 2010 Cornell University study, you’ll eat about 20 percent less if you keep your serving dishes in the kitchen instead of on the dinner table. Researchers tested how eating habits would change if food was served from the kitchen, not the table. Participants ate less when the food was out of reach, and were more likely to choose fruits and vegetables when kept in plain sight.

Hi Tom, thanks for your comment. Carrots and onions are okay in a keto diet as long as they are eaten in moderation. Obviously, I am not saying this chili should be eaten everyday if you are on keto. It is fine if you are having it once in a while and watching your carb intake throughout the day. The canned tomatoes I used do not have any added sugar or additives so that is okay. Thanks for your comment and I am in no way trying to lie to my viewers.
One is Keto Chow, who have their own subreddit (which is surprisingly active). This supplement is really great for keto, but it may or may not be vegetarian. The company sources their Vitamin D3 from the coats of sheep, their K2 from microorganisms, their protein powder from dairy, and potentially their Omega 3s from fish oil. If you’re less strict on vegetarianism, this meal replacement is GREAT at a low .5g net carbs per scoop. There are also a ton of different flavors you can try.

Some diets are set up to include an initial phase where you lose more weight. Atkins, South Beach and many other popular programs include a jump start for a week or two when food restriction is more intense and you lose more weight. You can lose five pounds or more per week during this initial phase. As a result, the weight loss will be noticeable sooner.
Stevia: Stevia has a glycemic index of zero, which makes it perfect for a keto diet. Additionally, it's not actually an artificial sweetener, it is a natural one. The liquid version is extremely strong which means that you don't have to use much to add the sweetness you need. Steer clear of any powdered version so as not to add extra carbs. The biggest issue with liquid stevia is that it can't be used in baking. That’s where allulose comes in!
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That depends. Mass says if going keto motivates an unhealthy vegetarian to clean up his or her carb game, it could be beneficial and lead to better blood sugar control. Plus, transitioning from a pasta-heavy diet to one that’s rich in veggies and healthy fats should help someone drop unwanted pounds, she says. But for vegetarians who eat relatively clean already and rely on healthy carbs like quinoa and oats — which are limited on the keto diet — to help them feel full, adopting low-carb keto might be overly restrictive.
Be wary of packaged vegan and vegetarian meat substitutes: While these might be good substitutes for meat in terms of fat and protein, they might also contain a high amount of carbs. Be sure to check the carb content per serving, and consider the ingredients. Is it full or preservatives and fillers? Better meat substitutes would be any of the proteins mentioned above as well as portobello mushrooms or eggplant.
Carbohydrate restriction can lead to quick water loss. When you lose water weight, you are likely to feel and look thinner. For some people, lost water weight can make the difference between two different clothing sizes. But losing water weight is different than losing fat. While cutting back on carbs is a smart approach to weight loss for many dieters, it needs to be part of a comprehensive program of healthy eating for sustained weight loss to occur.
Hey Emma, I would definitely recommend consulting with your doctor and doing some more research on your own. However, keto isn’t high in protein, it’s high in fat and moderate in protein. So as long as you are keeping that protein intake moderate and fats higher, I don’t see why not. But again, talk with your doctor and definitely reach out to others who may have more experience in that area. Good luck!
“If you look at people who lose a lot of weight through diet alone and compare them to those who do it through diet and exercise, the latter group has better gains,” Sharp says. “That’s because exercise increases lean tissue mass, preserves your metabolism, increases energy, reduces stress and decreases cortisol, which we know is key to weight loss.”
I know others of you are probably like, “Finally! A keto vegan/vegetarian post is just what I’ve been waiting for!” If that’s you, I am so excited to be able to help you out. I know limited food options can lead to a bit of a monotonous and dreary existence, and can eventually result in a horrendous bout of binge eating and crushing guilt later on. My mission is to help you avoid that vicious cycle and discover the wonderful opportunities that are out there in the small, but vivacious, world of vegan and vegetarian ketogenic living!
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.

This healthy chocolate chip cookie recipe has a texture that's almost comparable to shortbread! The recipe only requires 7 ingredients and stays vegan by avoiding eggs and butter. Using almond flour for the keto cookie dough keeps the texture buttery and light. This is a great choice if you're looking for an easy keto cookie that reminds you of a classic chocolate chip cookie recipe.
This makes my life so much easier. I'm a busy work at home/stay at home mom, wife, business woman and I feel like dinner is always the thing I just never get time to do. We have done like 15 of the crockpot recipes from Sarah and they are all very yummy. They get a thumbs up from my husband and kids every time. And there is always enough for my husband to take the left overs at least 2x per recipe. I have a family of 5, 2 adults, 21, 13, 16. So it makes plenty. Thank you Sarah.
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.
Many dieters think that being ‘good’ during the week gives them a license to let go on the weekends, but if you add it up, eating poorly and not exercising Friday to Sunday comes out to 12 days “off” a month! Instead of letting the days of the week influence your habits, focus on creating a healthy lifestyle that is sustainable all month long (with the occasional indulgence) for lasting weight loss.
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.
Another challenge, Vizthum adds, is not falling into the trap of eating foods that may be compliant but aren’t actually healthy. “As with any diet, the label itself does not make it healthy. The labels of ‘vegan,’ ‘vegetarian,’ ‘keto,’ ‘gluten-free,’ and many others include a range of food choices that fit the standards of the diet but aren’t necessarily healthy,” she warns. This is especially true of processed foods that may carry these labels.
Hey Jamie, great to hear that you’re going keto!! As far as lentils go, what are the different types you’re referring too? In terms of the protein shake, yes you can definitely have a protein shake as long as it’s low in carbs and you are adding enough fat to it – having a bunch of protein at once could hinder your ability to get and stay in ketosis so you always want to pair protein with fat to minimize the blood sugar response.
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.
Hello, I’m Abbey! I'm a Registered Dietitian (RD), an avid food and recipe writer, a TV nutrition expert and spokesperson, a YouTube host and the founder of Abbey’s Kitchen Inc. Abbey's Kitchen is a multi- faceted food and nutrition media brand developed with the goal of celebrating the pleasurable eating experience. For more information about me, check out my bio here.
Nuts. Nuts are a fat-rich and healthy addition to any diet. I tend to favor macadamia nuts and cashews over any other nut because they have the highest amount of healthy monounsaturated fats and the lowest amount of inflammatory omega 6 fats. Make sure, however, that you know the carb content of these nuts. Consuming too many cashews, for example, can easily kick you out of ketosis.
I went on a vegan keto diet for about seven months last year. During that time I created quite a few recipes for the blog. I wanted to post a bunch of those Keto Vegan Recipes all in one place. That way those of you who have been on the diet for awhile as well as those of you who are starting a vegan keto diet for the New Year have a resource all in one place.
This noodle dish from SuperGoldenBakes looks stunning and colourful, with a delicious peanut sauce for a hit of healthy fats. Smoked tofu is a delicious alternative to meat, with a richness that some people miss when switching to a vegetable based diet. Spiralized vegetables are a really flexible way to turn just about any dish into a keto friendly one, it’s definitely worth investing in a good spiralizer!

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.
"I weighed 200 pounds when I had to get a hysterectomy in 2011 to undo damage caused by an infection. Afterward, I was lethargic and gained 53 pounds. I was put on two different medications for high blood pressure and another one for acid reflux, plus I had high cholesterol and was prediabetic. I was also having heart palpitations, so I went to a cardiologist and was diagnosed with sleep apnea and put on an oxygen tank at night. My family doctor told me that my sleep apnea would probably go away if I lost weight."

Feeling positive about the future, rather than focusing on the past or present, is more likely to lead you toward a healthier snack, according to a recent study published in the Journal of Consumer Research. Instead of rewarding your happiness with a candy bar in the moment (or eating one for comfort), focus on the future outcome (like a healthier, lighter you) so you’ll make better choices in the present.


"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!
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,
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.

I ate five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables a day, cut out fried foods, and switched from eating refined carbohydrates like white bread to complex carbs like whole-wheat bread. I promised myself that after one year of living healthfully, I'd treat myself to fast-food fries (an old favorite), but I couldn't finish them. Now my cholesterol is in a healthy range, and I still walk 30 to 60 minutes four or five days a week.


At age 73 Lynn feels like she is in her 30's again. This is her picture at her 55th high school reunion and she could NOT believe how much younger, fit, healthier and agile she was then most the people there. She has working out and eating healthy to thank for it! She says with our program, she has found the fountain of youth and is a client for life!
Protein - It is well documented that vegetarians supposedly lack protein sources. It is also well documented that vegetarians and vegans usually aren't deficient in protein at all. It is true, however, that vegetarian keto restricts some of the usual sources of protein for vegetarians, like beans, for example (except for these 1g net carb black soybeans).
A lot of this initial weight loss is water. Your fluid levels fluctuate often and can change dramatically when you alter your diet. For example, when you start a low-carbohydrate diet, you deplete the stored glycogen in your muscles. When you lose this glycogen, you also lose the water it retains. As a result of this loss of water weight, you may experience a flatter-feeling tummy and the first pounds lost on your scale. Lose just 2 cups of water, and it results in a pound lost on the scale, but it's not actual fat loss.
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.)
Seasonings. One of the biggest complaints for people on vegetarian keto is the lack of variety. If you’re having eggs for breakfast every day, this is pretty understandable. If you pick up and experiment with different seasonings, you can create a lot of variety for yourself with the same foods. By way of example, the other day I made an egg scramble, but I added chili powder, cumin, and garlic to give it a southwestern feel. 

Dominic D’Agostino, Ph.D., one of the world’s foremost ketogenic diet researchers and founder of ketonutrition.org, agrees. “I generally avoid soy isolate and soy milk,” he says. “But I don’t think this is a major concern unless you are consuming large amounts of soy.” Note that fermented soy products—such as soy sauce and tempeh—don’t pose the same risk, and can, therefore, be eaten more liberally.
There was one person who I watched on youtube who was on a raw vegan keto diet who showed what she ate in a day. That might be the way to go if you want to avoid processed and cooked foods. For all I know it might be a good way to avoid the side effects of leg cramps because you are eating whole plant based foods and getting high quality nutrients.
First, even nonvegetarian keto eaters shouldn’t focus too much on meat: “The misconception that keto diets require huge amounts of meat or meat products may scare off vegetarians, those concerned about the environment, or people that want to eat healthier,” says Bobbie Henry-Barron, a dietitian at the Adult Epilepsy Diet Center at Johns Hopkins University. “A vegetarian version of the ketogenic diet may be appealing for its weight loss and other health benefits.” Check out 12 things that happen to your body on the keto diet.
According to dietitians, there are several types of people who should consider the keto diet. While many people look to the diet for weight loss, the keto plan has other potential health benefits. Those with epilepsy may see improvement on the diet; people with diabetes may also see drastic changes in their health. However, notes Diane Vizthum, a dietitian at the Adult Epilepsy Diet Center at Johns Hopkins, people with chronic health issues should be under the care of a doctor when starting these programs because of the need to monitor their medications. And, she added, anyone who is undertaking a new diet regimen should make his or her physician aware of it. Find out the 10 things doctors want you to know about the keto diet.
As I'm sure you've heard time and time again, a keto diet is a high fat, moderate protein, low carb diet. On a vegetarian keto diet, hitting your macros, especially protein, can be more of a challenge than for those who eat meat. Maybe you're not a fan of protein powders or the vegetarian meat substitutes you like are high in carbs. So, what options do you have?
You're more likely to see big changes in the number if you weigh yourself less often. Why? Because if you weigh yourself once a week, the result will be the total number of pounds lost over seven days. If you weigh yourself every day, you're likely to see small changes and you may even see weight gain. There are many different reasons that your weight changes every day and it is not always the result of how well you followed your diet.
In one study, eating a high-fiber, higher protein dinner (30% of total calories from fiber and 17% of total calories from protein) and less saturated fat helped adults fall asleep faster than those who ate meals that were lower in fiber and higher in saturated fat and sugar. The researchers found eating a high-fiber, higher protein meal was also associated with more time in slow wave, deep sleep, which is essential for memory consolidation and immune function. Eating more saturated fat, in contrast, led to less restful sleep and more nighttime arousals.
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,
Living a keto lifestyle doesn't mean you need to skip out on yummy treats. These 15 delicious keto cookies are proof! Whether you're looking for a keto twist on the classic chocolate chip recipe or the best keto cookie recipe for your Christmas cookie exchange, you're sure to find a recipe that perfectly fits your sweet tooth and low carb requirements.
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.
Instead of Butter use Coconut Oil or Vegan Butter. Coconut oil has a slightly lower melting point than butter and the same smoke point as butter, which makes it a good butter replacement. If you are not a fan of the flavor of coconut oil, look for vegan butter in your local health food store. Make sure the vegan butter doesn’t contain any hydrogenated oils because these oils increase the risk of heart disease tremendously.

kidney problems (kidney failure). Saxenda® may cause nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea leading to loss of fluids (dehydration). Dehydration may cause kidney failure, which can lead to the need for dialysis. This can happen in people who have never had kidney problems before. Drinking plenty of fluids may reduce your chance of dehydration. Call your health care provider right away if you have nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea that does not go away, or if you cannot drink liquids by mouth
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