Fruit. Tasty fruit. It was always packed in our lunch as children. It is the go to when we are hungry and want a “healthy” snack. Uh oh, the dreaded quotes. Does that mean that fruit is not healthy? Well, that depends. Let’s dig a little deeper into fruit and keto and see how they fit together.
Let’s get started.
A quick review. The whole idea of a Keto lifestyle of eating is that the body starts to run on ketones. These ketones are produced when you limit your intake of carbs and proteins and increase your intake of calories from fats.
As you increase your fat intake, your liver starts to produce ketones from that fat. Those ketones are used as a source of energy for the brain as well as the rest of the body. The brain needs a lot of energy, and can run on one of two things: Glucose or ketones. When your body produces ketones, it enters a state of ketosis.
The quickest way to get into ketosis is fasting, but we can’t fast forever. We can, however, eat a keto diet for a very long time. This type of eating lifestyle is very sustainable, and when our body starts burning fat for fuel, it becomes very easy to dip into the stores of fat we have to continue to provide the energy we need.
The Fat/Carb/Protein Balance
In order for a ketogenic diet to assist in your weight loss, the way you combine your intake of macro-nutrients is important. I will focus on the carb portion of the macro-nutrients in this article, since we are discussing fruit.
The ratio of fat/protein /carbs needs to be 70%/15%/15%. So for a typical day, that would mean that you would be consuming less than 50 grams of carbohydrates in a day, ideally less than 20 grams. Remember, we are trying to keep our bodies burning fat for energy, and if we consume too many carbs, they will be converted into glucose and this will become the energy source, leaving the stored fat alone and hampering your weight loss.
Fruit and Carbohydrates
This will be another one of those ideas that are difficult to wrap your head around. As I mentioned before, fruit has always been our go to for a healthy snack. Putting aside for a minute all the natural sugars in fruit (it is known as nature’s candy!) and just concentrating on the carbs, let’s see how much fruit, and which fruits, we should be eating, keeping in mind that the sweeter and larger the fruit or fruit serving, the more carbs it contains.
Berries are OK in moderation once in a while, but it is best to avoid all other fruits while trying to stay in ketosis. All the nutrition that you could get from berries you will get from the vegetables you eat.
Now, here’s a quick breakdown of the carbs in berries: This will be carbs in 100g or 3.5 oz of each fruit:
Raspberries – 5; Blackberries – 5; Strawberries – 6; Bluberries – 12
So some berries once in a while is OK. Try to avoid blueberries. The carbs can add up in a hurry!
Here are some other fruits (same size serving):
Orange – 10; Cherries – 10; Banana – 20; plum – 7; pear – 12; apple – 12
You can see that having a banana, for example, would max out your ideal carb intake for the day, not to mention all the natural occurring sugars (fructose), that would inhibit fat from being burned as energy.
The Best Fruit
There. I said it. Fruit isn’t everything that we were raised being told it was. It is still better as a snack than a donut, or a muffin, or candy. Or even a soda. But, we should limit our fruit intake, and only use it as a treat once in a while.
Treat yourself to some berries every once in a while. They are really tasty with some unsweetened, or sweetened with sugar substitute (more about this in a later post), whipped cream. Yum!
In my next post, we’ll dive right into vegetables, I think you will find some interesting information, and maybe even some yummy alternatives that you have never thought of before.
Remember, an apple a day does NOT keep the doctor away!
See you in the next post!
Have a great day!