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What can I eat???? Ugh!!!!
This is one of the most common questions I get when people want to follow a Keto Diet. Of course there is a general blanket statement of “just eat real food”…but quinoa and rice and potatoes are real food. And sometimes one might think that a beautiful loaf of fresh baked french bread is real food, and it is, but it’s NOT low carbohydrate. The goal on a Keto diet is to get your body to fuel on fat instead of carbs. Reduce your carb intake and you force your body into ketosis and to become a fat-burning machine.
3 Food Zones
I like to compartmentalize my food list into 3 segments…1.DANGER 2.GREEN LIGHT and 3.THE GREY ZONE. Putting food into 3 compartments helps me when I’m short on time and energy. You know that feeling when you’re hangry and you get to the buffet table? It’s like I go into frenzy and then all the rules don’t count….and I’m eating foods that I would never ever in my right mind eat.
In the moment of feeling like I am going to starve to death and just about anything must be shoved into my mouth a panic comes over me and I lose all clear thought. You know what I’m talking about. Decisions must be made in the moment. You are so frazzled or weak you could eat ANYTHING. Having these segments are the guidelines I live by…and it’s made all the difference.
The Danger List
The first segment is a bunch of foods that I just flat out avoid. For me (and a lot of people I talk to) it’s easiest to just have a list of foods that I NEVER NEVER NEVER buy or eat. It’s my DANGER list. I know the foods that cause problems for me and I just never have them or buy them. When I am served them or they I are offered them I turn them down (99.5% of the time). A loaf a bread, chips, ‘food-like’ substances in a box or bag, ANYTHING on the dessert table….these items are pretty much on always my danger list.
If you really want to get technical about your Keto foods list then you will have to start calculating your macros. In theory a Ketogenic Diet consists of 20g net of carbohydrates per day. You can read all about and learn to calculate your own macros here.
YES YES YES Foods!
The second segment is comprised of foods I gravitate TOWARDS. This is my Keto Food List. Animal protein (chicken, beef, pork, fish, eggs), full fat dairy (cheese and yogurt), most vegetables and some berries, and ALWAYS AVOCADOS! I try to always stock my pantry and rotate my fridge with these foods. ButcherBox is my not-so-secret secret. I have the highest quality grass-fed organic meats arrive at my door MONTHLY. They have deals for FREE BACON or free ground beef FOR LIFE….say what??? Yes, it’s true and I love them for it.
Meal planning always helps so in a pinch I have some hardboiled eggs or chicken salad or salad greens on hand. When you plan out your keto friendly foods to have on hand in a pinch or to use in a family meal you avert panic and anxiety over what you can eat. All these little tips help to keep me on track.
The Grey Zone
This is the segment that you will have to play with. See what works for you. The third segment is called the grey area. It really all depends on you, your tastes, your body chemistry. Until I found the diet that changed my life I was all over the board. FYI….Oreos and Doritos do NOT fall in the grey zone.
MY grey zone is MINE. The Keto police are usually on the hunt to shut me down…but IT WORKS FOR ME! I’m not a paid researcher and scientist for the public. I just know what works for me. I like carrots and beets. Some people will go batsh!# crazy on me for adding these to my keto foods list. I would be so so sad if I could never have my Carrot Feta Soup again.
Start with this general list and then make it your own
Click here for a PRINTABLE KETO FOOD LIST.
I’m just never going to eat sardines or kimchi or venison…and that’s ok. You might like some of these things and HATE things like broccoli or avocado (you’re crazy…just kidding). The point I’m trying to make is that you need to take the foundation of this Keto Food List and build your own.
MEDICAL DISCLAIMER…Please note that I am not a medical or nutritional professional. I am simply recounting and sharing my own experiences on this blog. Nothing I express here should be taken as medical advice and you should consult with your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program. I provide nutritional information for my recipes simply as a courtesy to my readers, this should never be construed as medical advice.