While on the keto diet, most of your diet will consist of foods high in fats coupled with a measured intake of proteins and low carbohydrate intake. Some of the food categories allowed in this diet include:
Poultry: Free-range Cornish hen, quail, goose, pheasant, chicken, duck, and turkey.
Fish and Seafood: Cod, tuna, scrod, anchovies, mackerel, flounder, catfish, trout, mahi-mahi, halibut, sole, sardines, salmon, halibut, snapper, and calamari. Always opt for wild caught fish to avoid toxins present in commercially reared fish.
Grass-fed Meat: These include beef, venison, goat, and lamb. Meat from wild animals are also acceptable; however, avoid sausages and meats that come with sugary sauces and those covered in breadcrumbs. Choose the chunks of meat with more fat since they contain less protein and more fat.
Pork: Boston butt, pork chops, ham pork, and loin. When choosing ham, be on the lookout for added sugar.
Bacon and Sausages: Preferably, you should buy these at specialty health food stores. If this is not possible, always read the labels to avoid those which contain fillers such as soy or sugars.
Canned Tuna and Salmon: Canned tuna and salmon are okay to consume while you are on the keto diet. However, avoid seafood rich in fillers, breaded seafood, and fried seafood.
Vegetable Protein Powders: Protein supplements such as whey protein, hemp protein, pea, and rice are acceptable.
Whole Eggs: This includes chicken eggs, and quail eggs which you can prepare through any mean desired; fried, soft or hard boiled, deviled, scrambled, or omelet style.
Shellfish: Oyster, mussels, lobster, shrimp, crab (not imitation crab that contains additives), clams, scallops, and squid.
2. Fats and Oils
Because these are your main sources of energy while you are on this diet, go for the types of fats and oils you enjoy. These may include: * Omega 3 fatty acids from fish such as tuna, shellfish, and salmon
Fish supplements or krill
Monounsaturated fats such as egg yolks, avocado, and butter
Vegetable oils such as olive oil, coconut oil
Non-hydrogenated beef tallow, ghee, and lard.
Duck and chicken fat
In order to make it easier to stick to this diet, be aware of which types of fat your body can tolerate. Many people seem to have zero or very low tolerance of vegetable oils and mayo. This may be a good thing because most of these oils are rich in omega 6 fatty acids – the kind that is bad for your body’s cholesterol levels.
In this case, work with the listed monounsaturated fats to reduce the inflammatory effect brought about by polyunsaturated fats. Nevertheless, work to balance both fats because you cannot survive on monounsaturated fats alone (You need a lot of fats and oils). Even then, avoid hydrogenated fats such as margarine to reduce the amount of trans-fats you eat.
3. Fresh Vegetables
For these foods, opt for organic ones or better yet, grow your own to avoid all pesticide toxins. Avoid starchy vegetables (corn, sweet potatoes, potatoes, peas, and winter squash) that are high in carbs. Instead, opt for moderate intake of sweet vegetables (squashes, peppers, tomatoes, and carrots). Vegetables that make it to the list are:
Onions (high in sugar; moderate intake)
Salad greens and lettuces: Romaine, Arugula, Fennel, Bok Choy, Boston lettuce, Endive, Mache, Escarole, Sorrel, Radicchio, Chicory Water Chestnuts
4. Dairy Products
Unsweetened whole milk yogurt (limit intake of this type of yogurt because it is a little high in carbs)
All soft and hard cheeses
Full fat sour cream (do not forget to check for additives)
Full fat cottage cheese
Heavy whipping cream
In any case, always go for raw milk products and if you do not have easy access to them, go for the organic ones.
Flavored seltzer water
Lemon and lime juice (limit intake)
Clear broth or bouillon
6. Nuts and Seeds
Nuts: almonds, macadamias, pecans, and walnuts are the nuts with the lowest level of carbs meaning you can consume them in small amounts. Other nuts such as chestnuts, pistachios, and cashews contain a higher amount of carbs; thus, you should carefully monitor their intake. Nuts are best soaked for some time before roasted.
Nut flours: these are necessary because while you are on this diet, it does not mean baking no longer fits into your life. Nut flours such as almond flour will suffice.
Some options include:
Inulin and Chicory root
Lo Han Guo
Here are spices allowed on the keto diet:
Cilantro or coriander seeds
As you can see from the above very detailed list, keto diet is NOT a highly-restrictive dieting lifestyle, it also offers you a variety of foods to choose from; thus, you should not feel overwhelmed.
However, there are foods you should avoid to achieve optimal ketosis as your body makes the switch from using glucose to synthesizing fats for ketones