MCT Oil. This oil is commonly derived from coconut oil and palm oil. It contains medium chain triglycerides, which are saturated fatty acids that skip normal fat digestion and go right to the liver where they are converted into ketones for fuel. Add it to your salad dressings, sauces, smoothies, fat bombs, and hot drinks like coffee or tea for a potent energy boost.
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.
First things first: When you hear that the keto diet emphasizes consuming fats over carbs, that doesn't mean fats from drive-through fries or something of that sort (as sad as that may seem). It means consuming fats from things like avocado, eggs, nuts, seeds, ghee, and coconut oil. These healthy fats fuel your body's energy in replacement of carbohydrates, contributing to the aforementioned possible benefits of the diet. That's why these foods are a good place to start when talking about all things vegetarian and keto and can be considered as the building blocks of many healthy vegetarian/keto recipes.
The middle section of the venn diagram shows foods that are suitable for a vegetarian keto diet. The first 3, however, are dairy and eggs, which are not allowed on a vegan diet. This is what makes vegan keto so difficult -- you are severely limited in the types of food you can consume, especially when considering that not all soy protein or "fake meat" is made vegan. It’s possible, it’s just really hard to do. If you’re feeling ambitious, here’s a short vegan keto guide that overviews some of the challenges and benchmarks for successfully doing vegan keto.
The benefits of a low-carb keto diet are also hard to pass up. It's one of, if not the strongest weight loss diet through ketosis. Keto may also improve acne, brain health, and seizure frequency, improve heart health, and combat type 2 diabetes, as well as assist with a host of other conditions. Others that adhere to the keto diet also self-report other benefits:
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.
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.
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).
Starchy veggies, such as potatoes and corn, are carb-heavy, which is a no-no on the keto diet. Still, as a vegetarian, you’re likely going to consume veggies for every meal. Aim for variety. Include leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, peppers, mushrooms, onions, asparagus, etc. “Sea vegetables are also great additions to your diet since they provide iodine and other key minerals,” says Dr. Axe. “For help with digestion and gut health, also try to include fermented veggies in your diet every day, such as kimchi, sauerkraut, etc.”
Vegetarian diets are touted as one of the healthiest on the planet. However, the exclusion of meat is not the only thing that makes these diets healthy. It's also the inclusion of real food and wholesome ingredients. Besides, a vegetarian binging on donuts, fries, and cheese is doing their health and environment a disservice as much as any other food junkie.
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.
Soy contains goitrogens, which are plant compounds that can impair thyroid function. If you experience fatigue, cold sensitivity, constipation, dry skin, or unexplained weight gain as a result of upping your intake of soy-based products, then you should limit the amount of soy you consume (more on this and other vegan health concerns later in the article).
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!
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.
If you are looking for something hearty and warm that still gives you the crunch you crave from veggies, I highly recommend making this salad. The bite of a slightly charred bell pepper paired with the creamy yet tangy hunks of half melted goat cheese makes this taste like anything but a healthy keto salad. In fact, it’s so good that you won’t need dressing.
Hi Martina, I'm an vegetarian who can afford to eat eggs. I've only recently started keto, but options are limited to eggs and salad. But in your recipes one ends up eating 5-6 eggs per day. While they're one of the few sources for protein and fat necessary for keto, aren't they unhealthy from cholesterol point of view especially since we're eating so many eggs, that too daily?
“I have had people I’ve known for years but haven’t seen in awhile not recognize me. I love that. I love the way I feel, the way clothes fit, and being able to shop in regular clothing stores. Mostly I stay motivated for the years, days, hours and minutes I’m hopefully putting on the end of my life. I’ve got two adult daughters and amazing wife, and I want to be here with them for as long as possible.” #keto