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.
**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.
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!
A challenge that you may face is keeping your carbohydrates below 30 grams per day because by nature, these plant-based protein products contain 2-10 grams of carb per serving. But these products are also higher in dietary fiber (aka low-digestible carbs) which has a reduced effect on blood glucose levels (Grabitske, 2008). This may give you a little more flexibility with the number of carbs you can eat while still maintaining ketosis (e.g. up to 50 grams per day), but this will require tracking to be sure.
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.
Happy Valentine’s Day! What’s that, you say? I should have posted this before the actual day, so you could make them today? Yeah, that would have been better, but that’s just not where my life is at right now. Anyway, I’ve really been in the mood for red velvet flavored things lately, and these vegan keto red velvet cupcakes just so happen to fit the bill. (more…)
I want to be totally honest about what I experienced on a vegan keto diet so that you know what you are getting into. My intention is not to turn anyone away from the diet, just be transparent about my experience with it. I would do a lot of research before starting it so that you know what you are getting into and how to maintain it without any symptoms.
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.
The vegetarian diet is one of the best out there for weight loss; research has even found that it's twice as effective at reducing body weight than traditional low-carb diets. But as trendy diets pop up, vegetarians may want to expand their horizons. That's how the vegetarian keto diet, a variation of the super-popular ketogenic diet, started drawing attention.
Meat substitutes. Meat substitutes are often the punching bag of vegetarians and vegans, and I’m not really sure why. Some say that soy is a poison that gives you cancer and disrupts your hormones and things like that, but the science says otherwise. Meat substitutes are healthy, good for you, and a godsend for vegetarian keto. Gardein, MorningStar, Quorn, Boca, Beyond Meat, Lightlife, almost all of them are GREAT for low carb, high fat, high protein meals. I would not be able to do vegetarian keto without fake meat products.
“I lost most of my weight (200 lbs.) in about 18 months so I have had to stay busy to keep it off,” he says. “I am extremely competitive and have an amazing network of friends and the From Fat To Finish Line (FFTFL) community. I like to join training groups and training clubs because of the friendships and accountability it creates. It would be easy for me to blow off a 10-mile run at 5:30 on a Friday morning, but I know I have two friends meeting me, who I would never let down.”
The percent in carbs that will put you into ketosis is different for each individual. I don’t think there is an established scientific maximum amount that allows ketosis for all. In addition, the 43% in calories of fat of this meal plan is a long way from the 70% fat of a strongly ketogenic diet. However, the 29% protein is in line with a moderate protein ketogenic diet. To sum up, this meal plan is on the border of ketogenic at best. You would have to see if you can actually pink a urine stick on this diet. It’s an oxymoron to have a diet that is low carb and high carb at the same time!
I tipped the scale as a 238-pound diabetic in 2009, thanks to bouts of emotional eating. My doctor warned me that if I didn't lose weight, I'd need to take insulin injections, so I joined a nearby gym. I dropped the first 30 pounds by walking on the treadmill, but when my weight started to plateau, I knew I needed to up the intensity. I signed up for Zumba, Spinning and weight-training group classes and was immediately hooked. The sessions felt more like a social get-together than exercise. Best of all, the added activity helped me reach my goal weight in 2012.
When you’re restricting certain food groups from your diet, it’s even more important to take a multivitamin to fill in any nutritional gaps. “If symptoms like fatigue, aches, weakness, moodiness, and trouble sleeping persist for more than two weeks, consider ending the diet and consuming a larger variety of foods,” says Dr. Axe. “It’s usually recommended that the keto diet is followed short-term, for about three months at a time (up to six months). Although, it’s important to always listen to your body and make changes if you’re reacting negatively.”
And speaking of working out, if you’re a gym rat or avid runner, prepare for your workouts to suck for a while until your body fully adapts to the diet. If you’re cutting out carbs for the first time, your body will need two weeks or more (and sometimes months) to fully support the demands of exercise with ketones. And if you’ve been relying on animal products, you may find it difficult to recover without the full array of amino acids that every serving of animal protein provides. You’ve chosen a hard road to travel, nutritionally, but don’t lose heart. Time and persistence will force your body to accommodate just about any regimen you subject it to, and there are plenty of people whose performance has thrived on unconventional diets.
If you follow these steps but don’t feel your best, you may benefit from paying attention to which nutrients you could be deficient in. Click on the button below to see the appendix on specific nutrients that can be an issue for keto vegetarians. But remember that if you feel good and are eating a range of nutrient-dense foods, you probably don’t need to worry about specific micronutrients. Simple does the trick!
Since the intake of meat and other animal by-products which constitutes the percentage of protein intake is a no go, you have to focus more on fat intake. You should, however, be mindful of the vegetables you take in. In order to source for proteins, vegetarians consume foods like legumes, grain sprouted bread, apples, bananas, oranges etc. which are high in carbs, and so extra caution is advised.
If you have a tendency to overeat at cocktail parties, "choose a non-caloric beverage when first arriving, and delay eating anything until you've had a chance to look over all the choices," suggests Lorraine Matthews-Antosiewicz, MS, RD, a food and nutrition expert in New Jersey. By scoping out what's available, you can determine which indulgent treats you want to splurge on and which lean, filler foods will help fill you up. Holding a low-calorie beverage in one hand and a bag in the other will prevent you from mindlessly grazing. "Select one or two hors d'oeuvres that you really want and then wait until the cocktail hour is almost over before putting them on your plate, especially if a meal is to follow," says Matthews-Antosiewicz. You will have to set down what you are holding to fill your plate, which will keep you mindful about what, and how much, you're eating.
If you’ve read through this entire guide, bravo. It’s huge, much bigger than I ever intended, actually. I’m really passionate about both vegetarianism and the ketogenic diet, so I honestly had a lot of fun producing all this information for you. I hope it was helpful, that you learned something, and that you feel better equipped to take on this mash-up diet.
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.”
There are some subtle differences between the ketogenic and paleo diets and many keto cookie recipes aren't inherently paleo-friendly. While cream cheese and peanut butter are the two main ingredients that make most keto cookies not paleo, none of these keto cookie recipes need those ingredients. I've made a point of pulling together recipes that are both keto and paleo so if, like me, you avoid cheese and peanuts you can still indulge in these delicious keto cookies.
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.
“The original keto diet is extremely high in fatty meats, which is not good for our cardiovascular system,” says Melissa Bailey, RD, creator of the Nourished Fork. “The vegetarian version eliminates these meats and allows for more plant-based options, such as avocado and nuts and seeds. In general, the population is going towards a more plant-based, whole-foods diet, which is why the ketotarian diet is emerging.” Luckily, you'll find that many of the best foods for weight loss are inexpensive, convenient, and easy to find in your local grocery store. When you learn how to plan and prepare meals in advance and fill your refrigerator with diet-friendly foods, you can even save time and money while you slim down.