Top 10 Keto Foods with Low Carbs or No Carbs (Keto diet)

Hello fellow Keto fans. Today I want to talk about the top 10 keto friendly low-carb foods, and no carb foods that should be in everyone’s ketogenic diet.

Those on a low carb diet often target something under a hundred grams or even under 50 grams of net carbs per day.  But for a ketogenic diet often people need to go way lower, usually 25-30 grams of net carbs per day (5% of your total daily calories.)

True zero carb those are things like water, apple cider vinegar, tea and coffee. They have zero of all the macronutrients and zero calories so yeah that’s what you can use during a fast but they can’t sustain us in the long run since they provide no energy either. So add these to your diet and mix them up or use them in combination of the foods below.

I’ll go in reverse order from 10 to 1 like a countdown. This list is my own based on my research and it’s what I follow for my own diet but if you have any comments on it do write them down below, I read every comment.

10. Tea & coffee

With zero carbs these will be great replacements for all those sugary drinks likes juices and sodas. As an added benefit the caffeine in both will help with increase mental alertness, and coffee in particular is will help cut your appetite and has a laxative effect which is particularly useful in keto.

You can also mix these up with heavy cream, butter, and MCT oil to make keto coffee aka bulletproof coffee.

9. Protein – Grass fed beef and free range poultry

This makes up a big part of the keto diet for those that can consume meats and are not restricted for dietary reasons or personal beliefs. These proteins technically don’t have any carbs so they should all be good for Keto except for the fact that we don’t want to consume too much protein as that will still kick your body off keto. So we want to be smart about choosing how much of each to consume. Before we get into the numbers quick reminder that fat is 4 calories/ gram, the same for carbs whereas fat is 9 calories / gram which will be pretty important to calculate the % of total calories in the foods throughout this article.

Chicken is about 26% of it’s calories in fat, 74% protein so we really want to choose chicken thighs whenever possible since it’s the fattier (and personally tastier) part of the chicken.

Beef comes in different fat percentages,  lean could be as little as 10% fat by weight, which equates to ~51% of it’s calories from fat and 49% protein, which is already better than poultry. Now, if we go for 80/20 beef then we’re talking 72% fat calories and only 28% from protein even though we’re just eating meat, which some people think of as mostly protein.

 Fat (%)Protein (%)Carbs (%)
Chicken26740
Beef – 90/10 (10% fat)51490
Beef – 85/1560400
Beef – 80/2072280

8. Seeds and Nuts

Nuts and seeds are very popular snacks on a ketogenic diet and my favorite is almonds. The best nuts on keto are Brazil nuts, macadamia nuts, and pecans. Almonds are also good and are commonly consumed on keto. The ones to limit as much possible are cashews which is one of the nuts with the highest net carbs. Nuts in general should be consumed in moderation so make sure you portion them out to avoid binge eating.

The best seeds are flax seeds and chia seeds so add those to your salads or smoothies. They are extremely low in net carbohydrates so just make sure to subtract the fiber from the total carbs for your calculations.

 Fat (%)Protein (%)Carbs (%)
Macadamia nuts8848
Brazil nuts8587
Pecans8758

7. Dairy – Greek yogurt, Cheese, and cream

Cheese is pretty high in fat and it’s relatively high in protein. With 75% of calories from fat and 24% from protein it’s a very ketogenic food. When it comes to which cheese to choose, they’re pretty similar when it comes to fat and macros. Brie, cheddar, Edam or Gouda all have a similar nutrient profiles. But when it comes to other forms of dairy there can be huge differences. If we start off with heavy cream for example, it’s 93% calories from fat, 4% protein and only 3% in carbs. if we cut back on the fat a little bit like sour cream it’s about half as much fat in it but the percentage of calories from fat is still 86%  and the carbohydrates are although the carbs are higher, consumed in moderation it would still be a good choice in a keto diet. Just make sure to avoid fresh 1-3% milk and don’t go anywhere near skim milk on a keto diet, as just one glass will contain more than half your carbs for the day.

 Fat (%)Protein (%)Carbs (%)
Cheese73271
Heavy Cream9343
Sour cream8758

6. Cruciferous vegetables

Cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower, kale and broccoli have many health benefits and have their place in the keto diet. Cauliflower in particular is often used as a rice substitute by grinding it up to make cauliflower rice, a low carb substitute to regular carbs to use in our meals only contains 3g of net carbs per serving and can be quite satisfying.

 Fat (%)Protein (%)Carbs (%)
Cauliflower91972
Broccoli92070
Kale352040

5. Leafy green vegetables

Some people think that because all vegetables are virtually all carbohydrate that you should avoid them, but something like lettuce. It has virtually no fat it has a little bit of protein, a little bit of carbs. If we break out the macros of calories, we see 39% carbohydrates, and although that sounds dreadful, it doesn’t really matter because there are so few calories, there’s virtually no calories in there at all, so you don’t have to worry about it. Furthermore, there is a ton of fiber and a ton of water, so this gets absorbed extremely slowly. What you want to do is think of these foods as filler material, that don’t really enter the equation at all. They’re still good for you because you have fiber and you have minerals, and the fiber feeds your gut bacteria and the minerals are great for everything that your body does.

Spinach, kale,  bok choy, and swiss chard are some of the healthiest vegetables for keto but also in general just like we learned from Popeye the sailor man.

4. Oils – Olive oil, avocado oil, and coconut oil

Healthy oils to consume in keto are

  1. Coconut oil which contains medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs). Unlike long-chain fats, MCTs are taken up directly by the liver and converted into ketones or used as a rapid source of energy.
  2. Olive oil (and also olives in general) especially as a carb free dressing, just make sure to use extra virgin olive oil.
  3. Avocado oil which is a very healthy oil and has a higher smoke point making it more suitable for higher temperature cooking than extra virgin olive oil.
 Fat (%)Protein (%)Carbs (%)
Butter9910
Olive Oil10000
Coconut Oil10000
Avocado Oil10000

3. Avocadoes

Are not only delicious, they are rich in monounsaturated fats, and contain many vitamins and minerals such as potassium. They’re also a good source of fiber which compensates for most of the carbs in avocados. The net carbs in a medium avocado is only ~ 2 grams so go ahead and add them to healthy smoothies, sliced on top of a salad or mash them up into a guacamole.

 Fat (%)Protein (%)Carbs (%)
Butter77419

2. Seafood

Regardless of whether wild or farm raised, salmon is full of fat which makes it a staple in a ketogenic diet. Wild salmon and sardines are particularly high in omega 3 unsaturated fats and the two of them are low in saturated fat. Salmon has twice as much fat percentage as chicken which makes it a much better source of protein on a keto diet. Shellfish including shrimp and most crabs contain no carbs so make sure to enjoy those on your ketogenic diet.

 Fat (%)Protein (%)Carbs (%)
Salmon31690
Sardine50500
Shrimp5950
Crabs11890

1. Eggs

Eggs are the ultimate keto food. Egg if often thought of often thought of as a protein food, but calorie wise it is 60% fat, and only 38% protein with a very low amount of carbs. It’s pretty common to have 2-6 eggs /day on a keto diet depending on your caloric needs. They’re also incredibly versatile in the many ways to cook them from friend, scrambled, omelets and even as raw ingredients in other foods. Make sure to pick up some fresh, organic eggs whenever you’re at the grocery store.

 Fat (%)Protein (%)Carbs (%)
Eggs60382

The Bottom Line

A ketogenic diet can be utilized to accomplish weight reduction, control blood glucose levels for people with diabetes, and other wellbeing related objectives.

Luckily, it can incorporate a wide assortment of nutritious, scrumptious, and flexible foods that permit you to stay inside your daily macros and particularly your daily carb limit.

Make sure to consume all these great foods mentioned in the article. Good luck and keto on!

~TheAsiaExpat

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