Avoketo Food Guide
I am not a certified nutritionist. This content should not be considered a substitute for medical expertise. Please consult your primary physician before making changes to your diet. You can read my full disclaimer here.
Keto consists of a high-fat, moderate-protein, low-carbohydrate dietary plan. You will want to plan your meals around healthy fats and proteins, while adding healthy carbohydrates to aid in nutrient consumption. The list below consists of essential keto-friendly foods. Keep in mind, you want a wide variety of food sources to ensure you’re absorbing as many essential nutrients as possible. Our bodies rely on nutrients that are found in some foods and not others, so change it up! This will not only help with weight loss, but you will find that ridding your body of sugar/starch/processed foods will give you clarity and energy. You will also find that any ailments you experience from aging or malnutrition can feel relieved from a consistent, healthy diet.
- Coconut Oil, MCT Oil, Avocado Oil, Olive Oil
- Cocoa Butter, Coconut Butter, Ghee, plain Butter (no margarine)
- Egg Yolks
- Fatty Fish, Animal Fat, Lard
- Macadamia Nuts
- Beef (veal, steak, ground beef, roast, beefy stews)
- Poultry (chicken, turkey, duck, wild game, quail)
- Pork (pork loin, chops, tenderloin, ham, bacon, ground pork)
- Fish (tuna, salmon, halibut, trout, mackerel, cod, mahi-mahi, catfish, flounder)
- Shellfish (oysters, clams, shrimp, crab, muscles, lobster, scallops, squid)
- Organ Meats (heart, liver, kidney, tongue, offal)
- Other animal-proteins: Lamb, Goat
- Nut Butter (natural and unsweetened)
- Leafy Greens (kale, spinach, bok choy, swiss chard, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, romaine lettuce)
- Green Beans
- Bell Peppers
- Spaghetti Squash
- Baby Bella Mushrooms
- Mustard (yellow, some brown mustards)
- No Sugar Added Ketchup
- Hot Sauces
- Worcestershire Sauce
- High-Fat Salad Dressings w/no added sugars (Ranch, Bleu Cheese, some Vinaigrettes)
Herbs & Spices
- Chili Pepper
- Cayenne Pepper
- Lemon/Lime Zest
- Salt and Pepper
- Low-Glycemic (Stevia, Erythritol, Monk Fruit, Xylitol)
- Heavy Cream
- Full-Fat Yogurt (greek yogurt)
- Sour Cream
- Cream Cheese
- Cottage Cheese
- Hard Cheeses (parmesan, swiss, feta, cheddar)
- Soft Cheeses (bleu, monterey jack, colby, brie, mozzarella)
Understanding “Net Carbs”
Net carbs counts in some popular foods:
- 1 tbsp Butter: 0g
- 4oz Chicken Breast: 0g
- 4oz Ground Beef: 0g
- 4oz Pork Loin: 0g
- 6oz Cucumbers: 3.67g
- 6oz Asparagus: 6.6g
- 6oz Spaghetti Squash: 10.6g
- 1 cup Strawberries: 9g
- 1 cup Blueberries: 8g
- 1 cup Blackberries: 6g
- 0.5 cup Mozzarella Cheese: 1.07g
- 2 tbsp Cream Cheese: 2g
- 1.25 cup Full-Fat Yogurt: 5g
- 1 4oz Sweet Potato: 23.4g
- 1 slice Pineapple: 19.6g
- 1 bunch Green Grapes: 26g
- 1 slice 9-Grain Bread: 20g
- 3 cups Popcorn (plain): 20g
- 1 cup Orange Sherbert: 21g
Now, the “Not Keto-Friendly” foods listed above aren’t necessarily unhealthy, they just won’t help your body maintain a state of ketosis. In order for your body to become fat-adapted, you must limit your carb intake enough so that your body “starves” itself of carbohydrates and will turn to burning stored fat. You’re still consuming healthy carbohydrates but staying away from anything that spikes your insulin levels.
Other things to keep in mind
- Your body can bounce out of ketosis if you consume too much protein. Check out the Keto Calculator to see how much protein is suggested based on your body type. Check this regularly if you lose weight, your macro calculations will change!
- Sugar-free products will help you get creative with your recipes, but make sure you’re limiting the amount of sugar alcohols. They may cause digestive upsets. If you need a keto-friendly sweet treat, stick to one food or drink item per day. I like Stevia in my coffee, that’s my thing. Other people like Halo Top at night, just don’t overdo it!
- When shopping for meats, always go with something that is higher in fat. Instead of purchasing boneless, skinless chicken breast, opt in for bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs or a whole chicken (luckily, this is usually more affordable).
- Fasting. I love fasting. Why? Because it helps heal my gut. Look into Intermittent Fasting– I do it every day. I fast for 16 hours (8PM until Noon the next day), and eat in an 8-hour window (Noon-8PM). It gets really easy after a few days. Other times, I’ll do a Bone Broth Fast for 1-3 days. Don’t go too long though… your body still needs food!
- HYDRATE. I cannot tell you enough how important it is to stay hydrated. Most time, if you’re “hungry” you may actually just be dehydrated and need to chug some water. To feel your best on keto, you need to stay hydrated. Your body requires sufficient hydration in order for your liver to produce ketones for energy. I recommend keeping a reusable water bottle around you at all times.
- Exercise! Keto is fantastic because you’re burning STORED fat. If you don’t put that body to work, it’ll still burn fat, but slower. Speed up the process and add some definition. I work a sedentary job, and I am still taking online courses, and run this blog — obviously, I sit around a lot. I’m not the most active, and I still managed to lose weight.
- Don’t rely on the scale! If you’re coming off of a typical American diet, or an unhealthy diet, you will probably lose your water weight first. Once you lose that, it might feel slow and that nothing is changing on the scale. Measure yourself, see how you’re benefiting from mental clarity, a rise in energy, clearer skin, and looser clothing before you take on the scale. Also, weight-loss doesn’t happen over night. I plateau often enough, where I may only lose 3lbs. in an entire month, that’s healthy weight loss!