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Nuts and Seeds in Ketogenic Diet

March 29, 2018

Probably the best thing happened to the dieting world is a ketogenic diet! It allows you to lose weight and grow muscles in the right places without having to starve yourself half to death!

What is a Ketogenic Diet again?

A ketogenic diet is, at the heart of it, a low carb, high fat diet. It relies on some simple biology to work and has proven pretty effective. Your body basically has two major energy sources. These energy sources are alternatives to each other and the type your body used is depend on what your diet consists of.

If your diet is high in carbs, then your body will produce plenty of glucose, which is derived from the carbohydrates and used as an energy source, and insulin, which helps to transport the glucose around your body. In this case, the body will prefer the glucose as an energy source and ignore other alternatives, such as fats. The fats will be stored in fatty tissues in your body and contribute to your weight gain.

If, on the other hand, you lower the amount of carbs in your diet and increase the amount of fats, your body will go into a state known as ketosis. This is the source of the name 'ketogenic' in 'ketogenic diet’. In this state, your liver will break fats in your diet down and produce ketones, an energy source. Your body would pretty much rather use glucose as a primary source of energy but, when forced to look for an alternative, it will resort to burning fat instead.

The ketogenic diet basically changes the metabolic fuel of your body to make it lose weight. You’re not starving yourself of calories. You’re having a good amount of calories, which means you’re eating enough to keep you going. All you’re avoiding are carbohydrates. This gives you massive benefits, including improved health, weight loss, and better performance physically and mentally.

Keto diet

Where do Nuts and Seeds Come in?

There are plenty of things that you can eat on a ketogenic diet. The idea is pretty simple: avoid the carbs and rack up the fats and proteins. You can have vegetables, Dairy, Various types of protein sources, and nuts and seeds. We could go into details about the other options but today we’ll look particularly at nuts and seeds.

Technically, most nuts are counted as fruits. However, unlike most fruits that you or I know, they aren’t soft, and they certainly don’t have any sugar. Instead, they have hard outer coverings that need to be cracked open for you to get to the kernel, and they are typically high in fats.

Seeds, on the other hand, are the embryos of plants. They are found in fruits and have hard outer skins that need to be removed before you can eat them. Some seeds can be consumed raw, like sesame seeds, and many of them are also high in fats.


almonds nuts

Low in Carbs

The major advantage when it comes to nuts and seeds is that they are both extremely low in carbohydrates, having a much lower carbohydrate count than most fruits, and even a few vegetables. They are also high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals, which are all good for your overall wellbeing.

The typical carb count in nuts and seeds is about 12.6 grams for every 28 grams at the highest and 3.5 grams for every 28 grams at the lowest. You’re probably thinking: that’s pretty high, but most of this carbohydrate content comes in the form of fiber, which body cannot digest. It passes through your intestines without being digested and goes into bulking up your stool for easier passage when you answer Mother Nature’s Call.

Below is a list of various nuts and seeds you can add to your ketogenic diet:

  • Brazil nuts – These nuts are rich in selenium, a mineral that keeps your thyroids healthy. They help reduce inflammation. Keep your intake levels low, however, to avoid toxic effects.
  • Almonds – Almonds are known to be good for your heart, reducing the amount of cholesterol in your blood vessels and keeping your heart functional. They also happened to have the highest concentration of proteins among nuts and seeds.
  • Hazelnuts – Hazelnuts are also beneficial for your heart as they reduce the amount of cholesterol in your blood vessels.
  • Cashew nuts – These ones should be taken sparingly as they have a high amount of carbs, even for nuts. However, they also help reduce the amount of cholesterol in your blood.
  • Sesame Seeds – These are seeds and are known to reduce the amount of LDL cholesterol in your blood as well as offer antioxidant protection.
  • Sunflower seeds – Sunflower seeds improve your lipid profile and have been known to be beneficial for people with diabetes.


Best when Roasted!

roasted nuts

While nuts and seeds can certainly be taken while raw but i think they are best taken when roasted! One of the disadvantages of taking raw nuts and seeds is the taste. They may taste unpleasant and discourage you from continuing your ketogenic diet.

Roasted nuts and seeds are not only tastier but the process of roasting them gets rid of any toxic elements and anti-nutrients. Raw nuts and seeds are more likely to have anti-nutrients or toxic elements in them that might not go well with your stomach. Also, remember to have the roasted nuts unsalted as salt and artificial preservatives are not ideal for a ketogenic diet.

Summing Up

Roasted nuts and seeds are a great addition to your ketogenic diet and will help you get to your weight loss goals without having to starve yourself. All you have to do is be careful not to eat too much and measure your doses as this particular type of diet is easy to overeat. Once you have that under control, you are well on your way to the body of your dreams. Happy dieting!


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