Can You Be a Vegetarian or a Vegan on a Ketogenic Diet?
Low carb diet cycle strategies, like the ketogenic diet, are healthy and reliable methods for burning fat and managing weight. Problem is, the traditional ketogenic diet relies heavily on meat, poultry, and seafood. So that leaves vegetarians and vegans with the difficult problem of constructing their own vegetarian or vegan ketogenic diet minus the meat and dairy.
What is a Vegetarian Diet?
A vegetarian diet simply contains no meat, poultry or seafood. Vegetarians obtain their protein primarily from plant sources. However, there are sub-categories of vegetarians worth mentioning.
- Ovo-lacto vegetarians consume dairy and eggs.
- Ovo vegetarians consume eggs, but not dairy.
- Lacto vegetarians consume dairy, but not eggs.
There are also flexitarians (or semi-vegetarians) and pescetarians to consider. Flexitarians eat a primarily plant-based diet with occasional consumption of meat, poultry, and seafood. Pescetarians do not eat flesh, but they do eat seafood.
What is a Vegan Diet?
A vegan diet contains no meat, poultry, seafood, or dairy. Traditional veganism also entails avoiding the use of any animal-based products, such as leather, reptile skin or furs and hairs; health and beauty aids with animal additives; and even plant-based foods that might contain animal additives, such as vegetable soup in beef broth.
Is Tofu Ketogenic?
Tofu is composed largely or soybeans, a legume that isn’t very ketogenic, so it’s imperative to check the nutrition closely if you’re eating tofu While tofu is often considered a vegan meat replacement in the culinary world, it’s very different composition, and low fat-carb ratio make it less than ideal on keto. Because of the limited options for high-protein, low carb foods while on keto, tofu can still be managed into your macros with care, and keep you in ketosis.
What’s most important to a ketogenic diet is the consumption of optimal ratios of protein, fat and carbs, not necessarily the type of protein. Optimal ratios induce the liver to produce ketones. The type of protein utilized to achieve this aim doesn’t matter.
A person on a ketogenic diet’s liver automatically produces ketones so long as the diet restricts carbs, contains adequate protein and a healthy array of fats, like plant-based fatty acids.
Is There a Low Carb Vegan Diet?
A standard low carb vegan diet, such as a vegan Atkins or a vegan ketogenic diet, does not exist yet. However, vegans can tailor a custom ketogenic diet by taking cues from existing ketogenic/low carb diets geared at meat eaters. They can do this by switching the suggested protein and fat sources to comply with vegan dietary beliefs.
What is a Vegetarian Ketogenic Diet and What Can You Eat?
A vegetarian keto diet contains protein and fats from non-meat sources, such as eggs, cheese, low carb protein bars, low-carb protein shakes, plant-based fatty acid supplements and low-glycemic fibrous vegetables.
What is a Vegan Ketogenic Diet and What Can You Eat?
With a vegan ketogenic diet, most of the proteins and fats come from nuts, nut butters, hemp protein, rice protein, MCT oil, plant-based fatty acids and greens.
There are no hard and fast rules when creating a vegan or vegetarian keto diet. Because of this reason, vegetarians and vegans have the option of building keto diets from the ground up to suit very specific health requirements that each individual may have.
If you’re interested in beginning a ketogenic diet, but don’t know where to start, the team at Blue Tree Health can help. We can make we provide a complete weight loss plan that gets you moving towards healthy living. Contact us to schedule an appointment today.