It is a common myth in our society that fats are bad macronutrients that play a core part in every disease, but this is not right, these macronutrients are also a very healthy and nutritional component, only if you are consuming the right ones. The keto diet includes all the healthy fat and excludes the bad ones from your diet, which cause major health benefits to you. Healthy fats keto are the main concern of our article today.
As we all know, the keto diet is a great way to achieve a good health status with the aid of just changing your diet within the ratio of low-carb, high-fat, and moderate-protein.
Why does Keto Diet Emphasize so Much on Fats?
The keto diet emphasizes fats so much because its main purpose is to initiate ketosis in the body, which is a metabolism that uses fats as an energy fuel, resulting in the burning of stubborn fat. When we lower the carb intake, the body has insufficient energy for its functioning which forces the body to go into a ketosis state, then it shifts from carbohydrate metabolism to fat metabolism.
The keto diet is mainly based on starting this process so that you can lose weight and have more balanced sugar levels, it is a healthy option to maintain your body properly.
What are Healthy Fats and Unhealthy Fats?
Fats are a major energy source and crucial macronutrients for the human body, some people consider them to be the unhealthy and main cause of obesity and other diseases but this, not the whole truth, fats have two categories; healthy and unhealthy.
Healthy fats are so helpful that can even lose weight when paired with a low-carb diet. The healthy fats include:
- Saturated fats
- Monounsaturated fats
- Polyunsaturated fats
Such as omega-3, olive oil, avocado oil, butter, tallow, etc. These forms of fats are concluded to be nutritional fats and good for human health.
Unhealthy fats are the main reason for overweight and heart diseases, they mainly include:
- Artificial trans-fat
Such as in fast food or ultra-processed foods, just avoid these fats on your diet and even in the normal routine.
9 Healthy Fats Choices for Ketogenic Diet:
Flaxseed is a great source of omega-3 which provides anti-inflammatory benefits, it is also rich in fiber and healthy plant compounds. Many researchers have proven that flax seeds may prevent diabetes, brain abnormality, heart diseases, and cancer.
¼ cup of flax seeds contains 7 grams of protein, 10 grams of fibers, and 17 grams of fat, from which half is omega-3. You can use flaxseed to sprinkle on salad, soups, smoothies, and also in various desserts such as pancakes, muffins, etc.
Chocolate is something we all love to eat; you can also have some chocolate even on the keto diet. Cacao nibs are a type of dark chocolate that is unsweetened, unprocessed, raw chocolate, which also is a rich supply of polyphenols that has an effective anti-inflammatory characteristic that can promote the growth of healthy gut bacteria.
28 grams of cocoa nibs contains about 8 grams of fiber and 13 grams of healthy fat. With these cacao nibs, you can make keto hot chocolate drinks, energy snacks, or desserts.
Avocado oil and avocado:
Avocado is an excellent source of healthy fats, fiber, and a rich supplement of vitamins and minerals, which researchers have shown to be very beneficial for heart diseases, aging, and maintained blood sugar levels.
You can eat avocado on its own, or in salads and smoothies, as guacamole to boost your fat content in the keto diet. The avocado oil can be used to drizzle on steaks or veggies and also as a dressing sauce.
Extra virgin olive oil and olives:
Olive and olive oil has been one of the healthiest food options for decades, they are not only a great source of healthy fats but also contain a high percentage of anti-inflammatory compounds and vitamin E. They reduce the risk of many chronic diseases such as cancer, osteoporosis, and heart-related diseases and decreased inflammation in the body.
Olive is a very convenient and tasty snack on its own, you can also add it to salads, green smoothies, etc. However, the olive oil can be used as a salad dressing or as an oil drizzle over steak and steamed veggies.
High-fat containing Greek yogurt:
Unsweetened Greek yogurt contains healthy fat with a good protein content; however, it contains few carbs but they are not going to affect your keto-carbs limit. it is a very healthy option for the diet plan, it also contains probiotics which are very beneficial for a healthy digestive system.
150 grams serving of Greek yogurt contains about 12 grams of protein, 6 grams of fats, and 6 grams of carbs, with 15% of DV as a calcium source. You can eat Greek yogurt by itself, as a savory dip with herbs and spices, or in a dessert parfait.
The addition of various nuts in your diet plan is an excellent source of healthy fats, fiber, and plant-based protein. An intake of healthier nuts can reduce the risks of cancer, diabetes, and heart–related diseases.
Nuts are very variable in their nutrients content, so eating a handful of mixed nuts will provide you with more health benefits than just eating a single nut variety. Almonds, pecans, walnuts, pistachio are all great options for high-fat and low-carb percentage.
You can eat a handful of mixed nuts, in salads and soups, in smoothies, or as a nut-based spread.
Whole eggs are a rich source of healthy fats with high-protein content, a single whole egg of 64 grams contains about 7 grams of protein and 5 grams of fat. The egg yolk is rich in vitamin B and various antioxidants, which is very good for your eye health.
An egg is a very versatile food option, you can have it in form of hard-boiled, scrambled, fried, and poached with the addition of different vegetables.
Fatty fish with omega-3 fats:
Fatty fish such as tuna and salmon are a great choice for a healthy ketogenic diet, as they are rich in omega-3 and quality protein, with a little vitamin D in them.
You can eat this fatty fish in grilled or baked form with stir-fry veggies or you can use canned fish with various herbs and spices with celery or cucumber stick or lettuce wrap.
Cheese is also a high-fat and low-carb food item with being a good source of protein, calcium, and probiotics. They are a lot of different cheese types available in the market, you can choose the one that is most suitable for you.
You can eat the cheese slice as a snack, with celery sticks, on top of steaks or roasted vegetables, and in a keto pizza.
Butter has a low-carb and high-fat content profile, the fat is about 85% in it. Many kinds of research have indicated that butter promotes brain health, due to the high percentage of butyrate fat. The organic butter that is made from grass-fed cow’s milk is much more preferable than the ones made from conventionally raised cows.
You can sauté your vegetables in butter, as a dressing rub for chicken, or as a spread on keto-friendly pancakes and muffins.
Unhealthy Fats to Restrict on Keto:
Fats are the main part of the keto diet but not all of them are healthy or the ones that can be included in the diet plan. The unhealthy fats that are strictly restricted on keto are;
Junk food or fried items contain high content of Tran’s fats which can cause heart diseases. The foods get fried in processed oils such as corn or Canola which can produce more trans-fat, as the oils are heated to a high temperature. Intake of these foods can lead to bad health effects.
So, just avoid the intake of fried foods on the keto diet, even if they fit the macronutrient chart of the ketogenic diet.
Checkout our guide on what to eat and what not to eat in keto diet.
Various scientific studies have proved that artificially produced trans-fat can cause heart problems and also other major diseases. They are found majorly in processed foods like cakes, biscuits, fried food, etc., and also in processed oils such as corn which is often labeled as hydrogenated oil.
Avoiding this unhealthy trans-fat on a keto diet is very important, as it can ruin your diet plan.
Ways to Add More Healthy Fats to Your Diet Plan:
When people shift on a keto diet, they often feel different in eating high-fat foods because their daily routines mostly contain carbs, so they find difficulty in cooperating with fats in the diet plan. Some of the ways to include healthy fats in the keto diet are:
Cook with fat butter or oil:
Cooking your food with butter or an oil such as olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil is a great way to cooperate healthy fats in the diet plan, without eating them straightforwardly. More overly, the foods cooked with fat content are more palatable as they are crisp, juicy, and Lucious.
Garnish and drizzle:
An easy way to add more fat to your keto diet is by garnishing shredding cheeses on your meals or by drizzling various oils such as olive oil onto your meals.
Consider fat-containing desserts:
Desserts are always a treat and delicious meal for us, adding more fat in it such as in form of energy bombs or a cheese slice with low-dairy cream, etc.
Being such a High-Fat Diet, is it Healthy for the Heart?
Some people question that keto is a high-fat diet, so is it healthy for the heart or not?
Heart diseases are mainly related to unhealthy fat consumption but the fat variety that you consume on a keto diet is the healthy one. These fat-containing foods are not the ones that are a reason for heart problems they are very good for heart health as they provide anti-inflammatory benefits to it.
So, even though the keto diet has a high-fat content but it will not cause a problem to your heart if you are eating the right ones and just avoid the unhealthy fat options such as trans-fat on the diet plan.
Potential Risks related to the Ketogenic Diet
There are no such potential risks of keto if you are doing it right and after consulting with your doctor. However, if you are not following properly then it can cause risks like
- A fatty liver
- Low blood protein
Keto is oriented around healthy fats to benefit the human body to its best, these macronutrients will help you with your major health problems such as obesity. They are a very nutritional and also delicious way towards a healthier diet in your life.