Can I do keto as a vegetarian?

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Can you? Of course it is! A ketogenic diet, at its base, is not about stuffing as much meat into your face as possible. It’s about eating low-carb so that your body relies on fats for ketone production to provide energy, as opposed to carbohydrates. This often translates into eating a lot of meat, because people understand fruits and vegetables to be high in carbohydrates, and thus are a thing to be avoided.

Well, everyone can calm down just a bit. Yes, vegetables have carbohydrates, but in varying degrees. Dark, leafy greens are low in carbs relative to carrots or tomatoes, and even those can be eaten while in ketosis. An important thing to remember is that we are all different, and all have different carb tolerances so it’s worth checking out just how many carbohydrates you can consume while on a ketogenic diet. Not everyone must be limited to the 20 grams per day that is so often recommended. I usually sit at around 40-50 (really) while maintaining ketosis, and all of these carbs come from vegetables.

In addition to non-starchy vegetables, another keto staple is the versatile egg. High in protein and beneficial fats, eggs are pretty nutrient dense. They also contain protein that your body digests quite happily (for the most part…sorry if you have an egg allergy!). Cheese, nuts, seeds, coconut and avocado can also provide fat while bringing a whole other host of nutrients to the party. If you eat fish (I do periodically), that opens up a whole new world of protein and fat options.

So, yes, you have to give up beans and grains, but keto is certainly achievable on a vegetarian diet!

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