Healthy Saturated Fats For Keto
Saturated fat gets a bad rap. Early animal studies lead to the widespread belief that saturated fats are harmful, and this gave rise to the low-fat craze in the 70s and 80s.
However, the good news is that a more recent, in-depth meta-analysis found no link between dietary saturated fat intake and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease or type 2 diabetes
In fact, it seems there may be some benefits to moderate saturated fat consumption:
- Saturated fat may reduce levels of lipoprotein-a ), a substance that strongly correlates with heart disease risk
- It may also raise HDL – levels of heart-healthy good cholesterol
- MCT oil, a type of saturated fat extracted from coconut oil, has been linked with weight loss , improved neurological health , and may even support healthy blood sugar levels .
Use Multiple Fat Sources At Each Mealtime
Youre not likely to be able to eat enough fat on keto without getting a little creative. Thats why, at mealtimes, its important to mix and match your fats. At breakfast, for example, a basic avocado toast turns into even more keto-friendly fare with the addition of a fried egg and a sprinkle of melted cheese. At dinner, salmon can soak in a sesame oil marinade, while low-carb veggies get roasted with olive oil and a handful of toasted nuts.
If you struggle to consume enough fat on keto, ask yourself at each meal how you can incorporate fats from a variety of sources, rather than just one ingredient.
Nuts Seeds And Healthy Oils
Nuts and seeds are full of healthy polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats, fiber and protein. They also are very low in net carbs. Olive oil and coconut oil are the two oils recommended on the keto diet. Olive oil is high in oleic acid and is associated with a lower risk of heart disease. Coconut oil is high in saturated fat but contains medium-chain triglycerides , which can increase ketone production. MCTs may increase metabolic rate and promote the loss of weight and belly fat too. Measure portion sizes when consuming any type of healthy fat.
Carb counts for 1 oz. of nuts and seeds :
- Almonds: 3 g net carbs
- Brazil nuts: 1 g net carbs
- Cashews: 8 g net carbs
- Macadamia nuts: 2 g net carbs
- Pecans: 1 g net carbs
- Pistachios: 5 g net carbs
- Walnuts: 2 g net carbs
- Chia seeds: 2 g net carbs
- Flaxseeds: 0 g net carbs
- Pumpkin seeds: 2 g net carbs
- Sesame seeds: 4 g net carbs
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How To Eat More Fat On Keto: 10 Easy Tips To Get Enough Healthy Fats
If youve been studying or living the keto lifestyle for any significant length of time, you may be familiar with the oft-repeated macronutrient ratio that achieves ketosis. This breakdown typically looks like 70-80% of daily calories from fat, 20-25% from protein, and 5-10% from carbohydrates.
While it might seem like nothing could be easier than eating 70% of your calories from fat, it can be surprisingly difficult to get enough fat on a keto diet, especially when youre first starting out. For those used to a high-carb diet, tweaking macros to stay in ketosis can involve a significant learning curve. But to do keto right, including fat at every meal especially fat from healthy sources is a must.
This guide will walk you through various types of fat, help you discover new and novel ways to boost your fat intake, and answer common questions about what it means to eat the right amount of fat on keto.
Why Eating Too Much Protein On Keto Is A Myth
Many keto dieters beginners and experts alike believe that eating too much protein can increase the amount of blood sugar present in the blood through a metabolic pathway called gluconeogenesis.
Gluconeogenesis is the creation of new glucose in the body from non-carbohydrate sources such as lactate, pyruvate, and protein.
Its name has the following three components:
Gluco: Meaning glucose.
- Genesis: Meaning origin or creation.
GNG is literally the creation of glucose from anything but carbohydrates.
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Your body uses compounds like lactate, amino acids , and glycerol to create glucose when no carbohydrates are present.
By this very definition, its safe to assume that gluconeogenesis should be avoided at all costs. After all, when glucose is present, it means your body cant produce ketones and use it as the main fuel source.
But some glucose is required for us to live.
In fact, your cells use gluconeogenesis to ensure you dont die when there are no carbohydrates present in your system.
The three main responsibilities of GNG include:
- Preventing hypoglycemia
- Fueling the tissues that cant use ketones
- Replenishing glycogen stores
Do not consume lower amounts of protein to avoid gluconeogenesis. Too little protein is worse for your health than too much.
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Nuts Seeds And Seeds Butter
Nuts and seeds are good sources of protein, healthy fats, dietary fiber, and vitamin E.
They make a convenient portable snack to fill your craving and hunger.
They also help regulate food intake, making them a great option for those looking to be sensible with their weight loss.
While they can be eaten raw and as is, nut butter is another option you can use in many keto recipes.
Nut butter like peanut butter and almond butter can be used in baking, smoothies, and even fat bombs.
They can also be enjoyed the traditional way PB & J with ketogenic low-carbohydrate bread.
Fats found in nuts and seeds are considered healthy fats. You can find polyunsaturated fats, omega-6s, and omega-3 fatty acids.
These healthy fats are known for their effectiveness in reducing the risk of heart disease, obesity, and other illnesses.
While a diet rich in nuts and seeds is considered healthy, be sure to check the nutrition label. Avoid ones with additives and sugar-containing flavors.
They are a great source of fat for a keto diet, they also come with calories and other macronutrients like protein and carbohydrates.
Eat them in moderation to avoid taking extra calories which may lead to weight gain.
Here are some healthy nuts and seeds with high-fat content.
- Macadamia Nuts
How to eat nuts and seeds:
Factors Affecting The Balance Between Protein Synthesis And Breakdown
As shown in the diagram above, some of the amino acids we eat and some that come from protein breakdown are taken up by the liver, kidneys, and muscle where they are metabolized for energy and for purposes other than protein synthesis. In the process, they release the nitrogen molecules that characterize amino acids, and these are mostly excreted as waste nitrogen in the urine. In addition, some protein and protein breakdown products are lost each day from the skin and in feces, but this typically represents about 10% of daily protein losses.
In our dreams, most of us would like to be able to rapidly gain lots of muscle and lose lots of body fat. But in reality, if each morning we wake up with about the same amount of muscle as we had yesterday, we have been able keep protein synthesis and breakdown about in balance, and thatâs a good result. When it comes to changes in our protein metabolism, good things happen slowly.
The most rapid changes in protein balance occur with infection, injury, stress, and starvation/fasting. Severe infection and trauma can result in 2â3 pounds of lean tissue loss per day, while up to a pound per day can be lost in the first week of the bodyâs adaptation to fasting.
Factors known to stimulate or facilitate lean tissue gain:
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What Are Saturated Fats
Saturated fats are solid at room temperature and are generally sourced from animals. These fats come from foods such as steak, bacon, chicken, and eggs.
There used to be a prevailing assumption advertised by the American Heart Association that saturated fats cause high cholesterol, clogged arteries, poor heart health, and a host of other health problems.
However, recent studies have debunked this claim, showing no significant link between saturated fats and the risk of heart disease.
In fact, there are many benefits of including healthy saturated fats in your diet. Saturated fat can improve HDL and LDL cholesterol levels, maintain bone density, decrease inflammation, and support the creation of important hormones.
Keto Diet For Beginners: How To Start Lchf With A Plan
The ketogenic diet for beginners is a low-carb diet that focuses on healthy fats. It is more popular than ever because of the tremendous fitness and health benefits.
I wrote this article specifically to give beginners the basic knowledge they need and a plan for how to incorporate the ketogenic diet into their lives today.
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Traditional Keto Diet Plan Vs Healthy Ketosis
Although the common denominator of all keto diets is low net carbs to induce ketosis, not all keto diets are created equal. In fact, traditional ketogenic diets do not differentiate the type of food. Many times they include processed, genetically modified foods, gluten products, unhealthy trans fats, and synthetic vitamins. This gives keto a bad rap.Traditional low-carb, high-fat ketos primary goal is usually rapid weight loss or a reduction of epilepsy symptoms, and not necessarily good nutrition. As a result, you could lose weight or reduce certain symptoms but become less healthy overall.Any type of ketogenic diet, by limiting net carbs, also reduces your fat storing hormone but why limit yourself when there are an impressive variety of long-term health benefits, which await you?To distinguish my keto program from others, I coined the term Healthy Ketosis. Its based on a guiding principle of mine:Its not Lose weight to get healthy, its Get healthy to lose weight!Healthy Keto is groundbreaking because it emphasizes obtaining your required nutrients from high-quality foods such as organic vegetables, full-fat organic dairy, and wild-caught, grass fed, pasture-raised meat, fish, fowl, and eggs all with the goal of getting you healthy to lose weight rather than losing weight to get healthy.
To Begin With What Is Protein
Protein is composed of several tiny units known as amino acids. While the human body can make nearly all the twenty necessary amino acids, there are nine that it cannot produce. These are referred to as essential amino acids, and they need to be consumed through food every day.
Since animal foods contain all the essential amino acids in approximately equal amounts, they are referred to as complete proteins. On the other hand, most plants do not have one or more of these essential amino acids and are therefore called incomplete proteins.
Keto-friendly sources of animal protein are meat, cheese, eggs, and seafood, and keto-friendly plant protein sources are tofu, nuts, seeds, soy-based products, etc.
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Everything You Need To Know About Trans Fats
Trans fats hit the mainstream after we learned how to create them from an unnatural chemical modification, called hydrogenation, that allows them to have improved shelf life. This process completely changes the configuration of natural unsaturated fats in a way that changes how we digest and assimilate them and all of these changes are negative.
For example, the consumption of trans fats has been shown to increase the risk of coronary artery disease more than any other fat by:
- Raising levels of the LDL
- Lowering levels of the HDL
- Increasing triglycerides in the bloodstream
- Promoting systemic inflammation
In other words, artificially produced trans fat creates the perfect storm for plaque build-up and heart disease. Your best bet is to avoid anything that has unnatural trans fats in it, or that has the word hydrogenated on the ingredients label.
On the other hand, natural trans fats that are found in red meat and dairy may actually be protective against heart disease and improve metabolic health.
What You Can Eat On A Keto Diet:
Get ready for a whole lot of fat, some protein, and just about zero carbs throughout your day. Keto-approved fridges and pantries include plenty of meat, seafood, dairy, eggs, nuts, fats and oils, and some veggies that grow above ground.
- Plenty of meats: Chicken, pork, steak, ground beef, lamb, bacon, turkey, ham, and sausage .
- Fatty seafood: Salmon, snapper, tuna, halibut, cod, trout, catfish, scallops.
- Shellfish: Crab, clams, oysters, lobster, mussels.
- Most fats and oils: Eggs, butter, coconut oil, olive oil, ghee, lard, avocado oil , mayonnaise.
- High-fat dairy: Heavy cream, soft and hard cheeses, cream cheese, and sour cream.
- A selection of vegetables: Cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, zucchini, green beans, peppers, eggplants, tomatoes, asparagus, cucumber, onion, mushroom, spinach, lettuce, and olives.
- Most nuts: Almonds, peanuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, hazelnuts, walnuts, as well as their retrospective butters .
- A selection of berries: Blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, all in moderation.
- Some of your favorite beverages: Unsweetened coffee and black tea is OK. Dry wine, champagne, and hard liquor should be enjoyed sparingly.
- All spices and some sweeteners: Enjoy stevia and sucralose every once in a while.
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The Best Sources Of Healthy Fats For The Keto Diet
There are many foods that can provide you with healthy fats on the ketogenic diet. The best sources are whole foods like:
- Egg yolks pasture-raised eggs are healthiest
- Olives Any olives will do. Just make sure they have no added vegetable oils or sugars.
- Healthy oils coconut oil*, olive oil, MCT oil, and avocado oil
- High-fat nuts macadamias, pecans, almonds, etc.
- Fatty fish salmon, sardines, etc.
- Butter or ghee* 100% grass-fed butter and ghee are healthiest. Use ghee if you are sensitive to dairy proteins.
- Coconut butter* make sure it has no added sugars.
- Cocoa butter* Use it to make your own keto chocolate or fat bombs.
- Low-carb chocolate If not sweetened with stevia or another low carb sweetener, make sure its at least 80% cocoa content or higher, as the carbs can add up quickly. Here is an example of low carb friendly chocolate that you can try.
- High fat cheeses* mascarpone cheese, cream cheese, cheddar cheese, etc.
- Full fat yogurt* be mindful of the net carbs in the yogurt or make your own keto coconut cream yogurt.
- Fatty cuts of meat* pepperoni and bacon, for example, are some of the fattiest meats you can have.
*Asterisked items contain fats that may increase cholesterol levels and heart disease risk in some people. If your cholesterol levels are unhealthy and heart disease runs in your family, then it may be best to limit these foods. For more information on the keto diet and cholesterol, feel free to check out this article.
How Much Fat To Eat On Keto
At least 70% of your total calories on a keto diet need to come from healthy fats.
If your daily goal is to eat 2,000 calories you will need to consume a minimum of 156 grams of fat, equal to about 52 grams per meal.
The key to entering into and maintaining a state of ketosis is limiting the daily intake of carbs to no more than 30 to 50 grams.
That means at most 200 calories from carbs, regardless of how many total calories you consume.
The remainder of your calories, usually less than 20% of your total intake, should come from protein.
This is equal to 100 grams of protein if you follow 2,000 calories of intake.
It is also important to remember that excess protein can be converted to blood sugar and push you out of ketosis.
Check your ketone levels and lower your protein intake if necessary.
Some foods high in fats are far more nutritious than others.
Pay extra attention to your food choices to make sure you are meeting your nutrient needs, choosing healthy fats, and keeping your macros at the correct levels to stay in ketosis.
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The Fat Intake Spectrum For Keto: What Happens If You Undereat Or Overeat
Now that you know how much fat you need to eat and how to fit it all into your keto diet, you have one of the most critical pieces of your diet success figured out.
As you begin to implement these changes, however, youll notice that it is nearly impossible to hit your fat intake goals perfectly every day. In fact, throughout your keto diet, you will have days when you eat way too much fat and other days when you are not even close.
Fortunately, you dont have to be 100% exact with your fat intake to get the results you want. The only time youll have to make adjustments is when what you eat is significantly different from what is recommended above.
What does this mean exactly? Lets take a closer look at each side of the spectrum to find out.
Why Am I Not Losing Weight
A stall in weight loss could be the result of many factors. Although eating an abundance of fat on a ketogenic diet is the goal, consuming fat to the point of creating a caloric surplus can cause a weight-loss plateau.
Although a high-fat diet that omits carbohydrates is a virtually effortless approach to lose fat, please keep in mind that a caloric deficit to produce weight loss is still required.
Concentrate your macros toward consuming the highest quality forms of carb-free fats and protein within your budget and then rely on the appetite-suppressing effect of ketosis to curb overall food intake.
A weight-loss stall can feel frustrating and even isolating, but many keto dieters face the same challenges on the plan, and we’ve helped them overcome the most common setbacks people face.
We’ve dedicated a detailed article outlining the most common reasons why people face weight-loss stalls or plateaus on keto.
Click here to read the entire article.
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