A ketogenic diet is known to have high fat, moderate protein, and very low carb content. It helps to enhance overall health in the body and help in weight loss. Most of the recipes available for a keto diet include animal fat and meat. But it is possible to have a vegetarian keto diet. By elimination all animal products in the diet, it becomes a little hard to lower carbs in your diet. It will take proper planning for a vegetarian to follow a ketogenic diet.
Is a Vegetarian Diet Healthy?
Most people avoid meat in their diet because they love animals or due to environmental concerns, but there are some who choose not to eat it because they want to be healthy. However, even vegetarians are at risk of eating unhealthy foods that are rich in starch and can lead to overweight. The grains, vegetables, fruits, and fruits they eat do not help them in maintaining a healthy weight. This is why even vegetarians need to get their bodies into ketosis to lose weight.
Whereas a ketogenic vegetarian diet may sound good, it can easily lead to nutrients deficiency such as essential fats, minerals and proteins. The foods you include in your diet contribute a lot to your health.
If you restrict yourself too much, you can be sure to suffer deficiencies. Here are different types of vegetarians:
- Vegans- This group avoids all animal products, including eggs, meat, seafood, milk, honey, and many others.
- Lacto vegetarians- They eat dairy products, but no seafood, eggs, poultry, and all other types of meat.
- Lacto-ovo-vegetarian- They eat eggs and dairy, but no meat, including poultry and seafood in their diet. It is common in Europe, the US, and other western countries.
- Pescatarians- They can consume dairy products, eggs, and seafood but avoid red meat and poultry. This is also known as semi-vegetarian and is easier because it eases the addition of nutrients in the diet.
Here is how to make a vegetarian keto diet work for you
- Restrict all carbs
Unless you limit your carb intake, you will never achieve ketosis. It should not exceed 20 grams a day. It means eliminating some of the starchy protein sources like buckwheat, quinoa, pulses, and legumes. What’s more, stay away from dairy products and milk and starchy veggies.
- Have High-Quality Proteins in Every Meal
Animal protein has 9 essential amino acids that help to maintain healthy human life. When these proteins are combined with low-carb vegetables, they make keto effective. However, all is not lost for vegetarians; they can get protein from nuts, seeds and vegetables. If their vegan type allows dairy products, eggs, or seafood, they can add that to their meal.
Your body weight determines the amount of proteins you can take in a day. You decrease it gradually from 100 grams to 70 grams per day.
The three primary sources of protein for vegetarians are:
- Eggs– Eggs are easily digestible and contain high-quality protein. They help the brain to function better. Besides, they are affordable and rich in proteins, about 14 grams in two big eggs.
- Greek yogurt– This yogurt has a lot of quality protein while providing you with minerals such as magnesium, potassium, and calcium. Also, the yogurt has probiotics, which are excellent for immunity and gut health. The carb content is 7 grams and about 20 grams of protein in 6 ounces.
- Hemp seeds– these seeds are rich in proteins and highly soluble fiber. They also give you plenty of omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, and potassium. In each ounce of the seeds, you get a gram of carbs and 9 grams of proteins.
- Eat the Best Vegetables
A keto diet allows you to enjoy various vegetables. You can have a variety to make every meal enjoyable.
Here are the top veggies that you must have in your keto diet.
- Spinach– These veggies have a gram of carbs in every serving. They are rich in potassium, magnesium, and iron; they make an ideal ingredient in keto meals.
- Zucchini– They can be used as a substitute for noodles, and their carb content is only 3 grams per serving and one of the best sources of vitamins C and B6.
- Avocado– This is a fruit, but more a vegetable because it fits so well in various recipes. It is a rich source of magnesium, fiber, and potassium for anyone in a ketogenic diet. It has carb-content of 2 grams per serving.
- Brussels sprouts– in every serving of this vegetable, there are 5 grams of carb. It provides folate, vitamin C and potassium in the body.
- Cauliflower– This is one of the vegetables that can be used in various keto recipes. It replaces different carb-rich ingredients such as rice and mashed potatoes. In every serving, there are 4 grams of carbs and comes with plenty of fiber and vitamin C.
- Use the Right Oils and Salad Dressings
Oils add a fantastic taste to your food. They also change the texture and make every meal enjoyable. However, you have to choose what to use carefully for your keto diet to give you the desired results. Go for healthy fats to help in proper absorption of vitamins and other nutrients with piling unnecessary carbs. Fats are the common cause of increased calories in keto vegetarian diets. Even with the healthiest oil, such as virgin olive oil, use the recommended amount. Avoid processed cooking oil at all costs and only oils that are close to their natural form.
If you are not sure about the oil to use, go for keto fats or condiments, including ghee, butter, and avocado. They add a pleasant taste to your food without making it unhealthy.
Use Spices and Herbs to Season Your Food
Adding spices and herbs into your vegetarian keto meals gives them a great taste. The micronutrients also come with minerals and health benefits. Try our garlic, rosemary, garlic, cinnamon, and many others.
The Bottom Line
Being a vegetarian is no longer a reason to avoid keto. You now know how to make your meals without including anything that you do not want in your diet. Just check what’s keto fruit list and your experience as a vegetarian will be outstanding.