How to Start the Keto Diet
Congrats on taking the first step to learning more about the keto diet!
What is the keto diet?
The keto diet can go by a few different names: low-carb diet, ketogenic diet, Atkins diet, and low-carb high-fat (LCHF) diet. The main take away is that it’s a dietary lifestyle that cuts down carbohydrate consumption. It’s a “way of eating” that tells the body to use fat (ketones) instead of sugar (glucose) for fuel. We will teach you how to easily start the keto diet below.
So why cut carbs?
Removing simple carbohydrates like sugar, bread, and pasta while subbing in meat, nuts, cheese, low-starch plants, and seeds, eliminates around 300 carbohydrates (what the average American eats daily) to as little as 20 total carbohydrates per day. That’s a huge change! 😱
By reducing carbs and replacing them with fat, this forces the cells of the body to use ketones for fuel instead of glucose. I like to think of it as selecting high-octane over regular fuel for your body. The focus of the diet is changing the fuel source, not necessarily calorie restriction, which is the basis for most other weight-loss diets.
This process results in weight loss, improved brain function & performance, and just an overall feeling of wellness — both physically and mentally!
While we’re obviously big fans of the keto diet at Hip2Keto, we completely understand that it’s not for everyone. And before you start any weight loss or health journey, it’s in your best interest to speak to your physician. It’s the safe and smart thing to do.
Want to start out on the right foot? Give our 30-Day Keto Challenge a try!
The FREE 30-Day Keto Challenge was designed with YOU in mind to help you reach your wellness goals with a fun and engaging challenge. In this series, we share helpful keto tips and tricks, insightful reads from our Keto Nutritionist, weekly meal plan ideas, meal prep tips, and delicious dining out advice.
Get more out of your Keto experience and chat daily with Collin!
You’ll be so excited to learn that Hip2Keto text messaging with Collin is now available! You can ask any questions you have. Plus, if you want the latest recipes our team is developing, are curious about her keto lifestyle, or what she’s ordering when she eats out – now you can hear it all directly from her!
You can also ask me any keto-related questions or just chat about this month’s keto book club. Really she’s up for any keto chats as she’s truly so passionate about this way of eating and wants to be your personal keto coach and friend. Yay!
What are some of the benefits of eating a high-fat diet?
What can I eat on a keto diet?
Changing up your food lifestyle can seem overwhelming. Cutting out certain fruits and vegetables and replacing them with fat-filled foods like bacon, cream, and ribeye steaks can get a little confusing as well.
To help get you started, we’ve put together a ketogenic diet food list just for you! All these items fit perfectly within the 5% carbohydrate guidelines most keto dieters adhere to, as well as low-carbers following older Atkins plans (think 1972).
You can download the full keto foods list HERE or view below.
Eat from any of the following food groups:
Watch for meats with added high-carb fillers like hot dogs, sausage, meatballs, and cold cuts.
FISH & SEAFOOD
All fish, including:
- Oil-packed and smoked varieties
- Shrimp (non-breaded)
*Most shellfish is fine for keto but watch for higher carb counts in clams and mussels. Always avoid breaded fish and seafood that is pre-made due to possible high carb content. When in doubt, check the food label if buying in store.
- Anything with wings
- But no stuffing
You can also eat the eggs that come from these animals in any prepared fashion, such as hard-boiled, fried, scrambled, poached, or omelet.
- Bok Choy
- Brussels Sprouts
- Chinese Cabbage
- Green Beans
- Olives (green or black)
- Spaghetti Squash
- Swiss Chard
- Coconut (Unsweetened)
- Bacon Fat
- Grass-fed Butter
- Almond Milk
- Cream Cheese
- Heavy Cream
- Oils (coconut, avocado olive, etc.)
- Hard, aged cheese.
- Cream cheese, fresh cheeses, or cheese spreads are fine in moderation.
- Cheese sticks
- Beef jerky
- Cheese crisps
- Almonds, macadamia nuts, and other low-carb nuts
- Seeds such as pumpkin and sunflower
- Pork Rinds
- Coconut Aminos
- Hot Sauce
- Sugar-Free Ketchup
- Apple Cider Vinegar
- Sugar-Free Steak Sauce
- Sugar-Free BBQ Sauce
- Vanilla and other extracts
- Any dry powdered spice that contains no sugar (like unsweetened cocoa)
- Salad dressings with vinegar, oil, salt, dry spices, herbs, or grated cheese.
- Water (including mineral and sparkling water)
- Club soda and seltzer water
- Sugar-free or diet soda
- Broth (beef, chicken, bone, etc.)
- Coffee (caffeinated and decaf)
- Low-carb alcoholic beverages
- Unsweetened Chocolate Chips
- Almond, Coconut or Lupin Flour
- Alternative Sweeteners – Monk Fruit, Stevia, Allulose, Chicory Root, Erythritol, Xylitol
- Unsweetened Cocoa
- Sugar-Free Syrups
What are some good keto diet recipes?
- Start off right with yummy keto appetizers.
- Make your mid-day meal delicious and nutritious or fast until dinner!
- Browse these dinner ideas your whole family will love.
- Curb your sweet tooth with sugar-free desserts.
- Cook meals up in a snap with Instant Pot recipes.
- Can’t decide? Check out all Hip2Keto recipes!
Other helpful links to get you started on the keto diet:
“Personally, the biggest hurdle for me when I first began eating a ketogenic diet was definitely learning how to deal with my insanely strong sugar cravings. 😬 Those powerful sugar and carb cravings got intense, and I often daydreamed about devouring a Costco sheet cake. Yes, I am a complete sugar addict.” Read the full post here.
Disclaimer: We are not doctors. While we’re so excited about sharing our experience with the ketogenic lifestyle, please partner with your trusted healthcare professionals for optimal health. Your doctor + keto = better choices you can track!