What should we avoid?
It is said that everything good has a price, and we see that clearly in diets. In particular, the keto diet requires a rather drastic change in our eating habits.
Many everyday foods must be eliminated from a keto diet. But there are a wide variety of options available, as you will see in our article on foods allowed on the keto diet.
What are the main ingredients you should avoid? In this article we will give you a very simple explanation.
What you need to understand to start the keto diet
The basis of the keto diet is to decrease the amount of carbohydrates you consume. These are found in many commonly used foods, such as flours, grains, and even fruits.
What the keto diet does by restricting carbohydrate intake is activate a mechanism known as ketosis. You no longer have carbohydrates for energy and are forced to burn much more fat than before.
When you go long enough without any carbohydrates, your body activates new enzymes that produce energy from fat. To produce this effect you must consume about 20 grams of carbohydrates a day or less, and maintain this diet until the carbohydrate reserves are depleted.
In this way, you will be effectively burning a large number of calories from fat, even at rest. However, as soon as you start replenishing your body with carbohydrates, this alternate pathway of energy production will immediately shut down. Therefore, the keto diet has to be strictly adhered to in order to really work (1,2).
Foods prohibited on the keto diet
The daily limit of carb intake should be between 20 and 40 grams. If we take that to the food field, you will be surprised to know the large amount of food that we would be eliminating.
Most of us consume those 20 to 40 grams of carbs in a single plate of food. And while healthy carbs do exist, even these should be limited.
For example (2):
- Fruits : Most fruits are high in carbohydrates. One banana and one cup of chopped mango have approximately 25 grams of carbohydrates. With a single serving you would already be reaching the daily limit. Therefore, despite having phytonutrients and other beneficial substances, almost all fruits are out of the diet.
- Grains and Cereals : Anything that contains grains or is produced with grains should be avoided. Even healthy foods like beans cannot be eaten. And others like pasta, bread, and rice are not on the list either. To give a figure, in a slice of bread there are about 11 grams of carbohydrates. With two of them we would already be stepping on the daily limit.
- Sugar and processed foods : Obviously, anything with sugar in it is off limits. With this we include honey and maple, juices and sugary drinks, and even some foods considered healthy, such as yogurt, which commercially comes with added sugars.
The keto diet is a low-carb diet that stimulates a natural process called ketosis. This is an alternate pathway for energy production that burns fat instead of carbohydrates. However, to activate ketosis we must eliminate carbohydrates almost completely from the diet.
The goal is to consume a maximum of 20 grams of carbohydrates per day. In our daily diet, we consume those 20 grams in a few bites. That is why it is so important to carefully choose foods and ingredients. We will be eliminating most fruits, cereals, grains, processed foods, and everything that contains added sugar from the diet.
- Perez-Guisado, J. (2007). Arguments in favor of ketogenic diets. Internet J Nutr Wellness , 4 (2), 1-15.
- Johansson, M. (2017). The Keto Guidebook . Simon and Schuster.