The ketogenic and plant-based diets are arguably today’s most popular diets and although they’re very different from each other, it is possible to get benefits from what they both have to offer!
Benefits of a keto diet include improved blood sugar regulation, lowered inflammation, improved mitochondrial health, weight loss, improvement in neurological disorders, and more!
Since the keto diet focuses on lowering the amount of carbohydrates being consumed, it’s very important for individuals to eat good quality fats that are found in foods like grass fed beef so that they’re getting all the important nutrients they need. That is why the traditional keto diet includes a high consumption of animal proteins such as poultry, red meat, and seafood.
Since the plant-based and vegetarian diet doesn’t include the consumption of meat, vegetarians rely upon eating a high amount of carbohydrates as they’re the major source of nutrients & protein. Because of the high carbohydrate load, individuals following a vegetarian keto diet may not produce as many ketones as someone following the traditional keto diet.
With that being said, everyone follows the keto diet differently for their own personal goals and health status.
A ketogenic diet is a very low carbohydrate plan that aims to get the majority of its calories from healthy fats. The keto diet aims to get 60-70% of total calories from fats with around 5% coming from carbohydrates, and the rest from protein. The goal is to get blood sugar levels down so that the body can start burning fat as energy instead of glucose. The majority of fats and protein usually come from red meat, seafood and eggs on the keto diet.
So if vegetarians don’t consume animal-based foods, is it even possible for them to follow a keto diet? Yes! Although it could be much more limiting. When looking for plant-based foods that provide enough fat, adequate protein and that are also low in carbohydrates, the list of available foods begins to shorten. With some pre-planning and creativity, it can be achieved under the supervision of your doctor or health care provider!
Staples on a plant-based keto diet would include avocado, olives, olive oil, coconut butter, coconut oil, coconut milk, coconut flakes, coconut milk kefir, coconut milk yogurt, and raw cacao.
Protein gets challenging on a vegetarian keto diet because many of the best plant-based protein sources are high in starches and therefore gluten. In this case the best protein sources would include eggs, pea protein, hemp protein, sprouted nuts and sprouted seeds. Sprouting nuts and seeds allows for better absorption of their nutrients.
Festal Cafe is a keto restaurant in Vancouver that offers lots of menu choices with the above mentioned staples on a plant-based, vegetarian keto diet. We can even make customizations to certain dishes if need be! Our salads for example are loaded with fibrous, low-carbohydrate vegetables like spring mix, jalapenos, and cucumbers and healthy fats like olives and avocado. If you’re eating eggs they could be added to your salad to add protein and fat.
Whether you’re trying to eat more plant-based, are eating a low-carb or keto diet, or are curious about a vegetarian keto diet, Festal Cafe has options for you!