Trying a new meal plan can be frustrating, difficult, and can even cause irritability. It can be extremely frustrating trying to figure out what to buy at the grocery store or how to prepare it in your home. It can also be very difficult trying to find proper foods when dining at restaurants or friends and family members.
Yet, a proper meal plan can be a very positive change in your daily health. Over time, a meal plan filled with appropriate nutrition from all food groups should become part of your daily lifestyle.
A ketogenic meal plan is a great source for those who need to produce more ketones. During this meal plan, keep in mind that you’ll want to be in taking more fatty foods. Because ketosis works through changing your metabolism through using fat as an energy source, you’ll want to be storing more fat than you might have previously. While this can be a daunting thought to overcome, having an appropriate food list should help you establish the ultimate ketogenic meal plan.
There are many options for those looking for a ketogenic healthy diet.
Fats and Oils
It may sound silly to say that you need to eat fat to lose weight or be healthier. However, the fatty foods that you should be choosing will be filled with healthy nutrients.
Fats can be very important to our meal. However, eating the wrong fats can also be very detrimental. Fats should be the majority of your daily intake on a ketogenic meal plan, so be sure to know that you are eating the right kind of fatty foods.
Saturated fats like the contents of potato chips, processed pretzels, cookies, crackers, and other snacks do not fit into the fat category of a ketogenic meal plan. You need to be looking for foods that are saturated and monosaturated fats.
Saturated and monosaturated fats are foods constituted of butter, avocado, macadamia nuts, tuna/fish, and shellfish.
Similarly, you need to be stocking up on Omega 3’s. Omega 3 is a nutrient that is necessary in creating the right meal plan. Usually fish carry many Omega 3’s that you need. If you aren’t a big fan of fish, try going to a local supplement store. Omega 3 supplements can be bought in capsule form if you are not a fan of fish. It will help give your body what it needs for a balanced diet.
You also need to avoid hydrogenated fats. In hydrogenated fats, you’ll have oils like vegetable oil–this is bad. If you need to use oil, try using coconut oil or spray the pan lightly rather than saturating your food. The less oil you use, the more good fatty elements you can get from it.
While organic and grass-fed sources are preferred, here are some great options for building fatty and oil intakes in your ketogenic meal plan.
- Beef tallow
- Olive oil
- Macadamia nuts
- Chicken fat
Proteins are also essential to a ketogenic meal plan. While proteins should take significantly less space in your meal than fats and oils, you need proteins to be able to create enough energy.
Protein will cause you to be less hungry. It will also increase energy and motivational levels, a reoccurring symptoms of creation of ketones through ketosis.
When going for proteins, looking for grass-fed or organic options is a healthier choice. You should also look for products like free-range eggs. These options are both better for the animal and for your health.
Options for protein:
- Red Meat
- Whole Eggs
Fish are a great source of protein. If you catch the fish yourself or visit a local fish market, you are likely to get even more benefits due to the natural nature of the fish.
While many people aren’t a fan of the green and mushy, veggies are an essential source to your meal plan. Grown right from the earth, they provide many nutrients that proteins and fatty acids cannot. For healthy vegetables, look for veggies that are grown mostly above ground; Leafy greens are best. You should also be looking for organic vegetables that are grown without pesticides.
If you’d like to try for an added bonus, try growing your own fresh vegetables from home. By growing your own veggies, you’ll know exactly where they came from, what has been used to grow them, and where and how they’ve been grown.
While veggies are very healthy, be careful to watch for vegetables that are high in sugar. the best type of veggies for a ketogenic meal plan are those that are dark and leafy.
Also, keep in mind that a meal plan with low carbohydrates cannot allow for plentiful intake of nutrient-rich veggies. However, your carb intake will be high enough that you can include copious amounts of nutrient (including potassium) rich vegetables to offer the body sufficient nutrition.
Veggies that you can get the most nutrients from include kale and spinach, among others:
- Romaine Lettuce (note Iceberg lettuce does not have the nutritional value needed)
Dairy products can also be a source of protein and a source of Vitamin D. However, dairy should be raw and purchased in full fat, not in low fat.
Here are some options:
- Heavy whipping cream
- Cheeses (both hard and soft)
- Sour Cream
While dairy products should not be taking up very much of your ketogenic meal plan at all, they certainly should be a part of your nutritional need. Therefore, it’s important to stock up on nutrients from dairy now and then.
Seeds and Nuts
Nuts can be a great source of protein and nutrients. They are excellent to snack on and will curb cravings. For ultimate nutritional value, nuts are best when roasted. When roasted, the nut becomes free of all pesticides and things that are anti-nutritional while being grown. This gives the nut as most nutritional value as can possibly be obtained.
However, be careful to avoid peanuts. Peanuts are considered a legume which is not an often a recommended option for those on a ketogenic meal plan. If you are on a ketogenic meal plan for medical reasons, check with your doctor before opting for a choice of peanuts.
You should also look for nuts that are unsalted. Often times, sunflower seeds and cashews will already come pre- salted. Check the box or container to be sure that you are only getting the nut–not processed sodium with it.
What nuts and seeds should you eat? Here is a comprehensive list:
- Seed flours
- Sunflower seeds
Remember that nuts are very high in Omega-6 fatty acids, so you’ll want to limit your intake. If consuming nuts every day, more than a handful will not be beneficial to your diet. However, eating and baking done in moderation will give you many nutrients that will provide you with protein and Omega-6’s.
If you are not familiar with ketosis or the ketogenic meal plan, know that one of the most popular symptoms that occurs almost instantly is dehydration. A ketogenic meal plan has a natural diuretic effect. While symptoms of dehydration will lessen over time, it should be noted that beverages will become an important element in your diet.
While on a ketogenic meal plan, always keep a bottle of water with you. Whether you are at work, at the gym, going to class, or meeting family members, bring hydration. It may help to invest in a nice water bottle. A water bottle with a preferable pattern or cooling system may help you to hydrate more often.
If you’ve had urinary infections or problems or bladder infections in the past, you will need to be more aware than others on a ketogenic meal plan. because of previous health conditions, you will want to drink twice the amount of what you believe you need. Water is the best beverage to keep hydrated. It’s natural, free of any anti-nutrients, and benefits your body in every way that it needs to. In order to meet dehydration needs, drink at least eight glasses of water a day.
Remember that our bodies are 2/3rd made up of water. It’s an essential element. However, keep in mind that too much water can also cause detrimental health effects like water poisoning. Check with your medical professional to know how much water you should be in taking for your ketogenic needs and bodily weight.
Other beverages you can try include:
- Herbal teas
- Flavor packets
If you get tired of regular water, you can try flavor packets like crystal lite. Yet, be careful because these flavor packets often contain carbohydrates which is detrimental to a ketogenic meal plan.
A ketogenic meal plan doesn’t need to be painful. In fact, it can be beneficial to your lifestyle if done properly. In many cases, a ketogenic meal plan will give you all of the nutrients that you need and then some. Be sure to follow this comprehensive list if you are on a ketogenic meal plan to be sure that you receive all of the proper nutrients you need while in ketosis.