If you started a keto diet, which means choosing lower carb options at meals, but also know that a balanced diet rich in vegetables is important for good health, finding low carb veggies is important. At Revolution Training in Stamford, CT, we focus on boxing, strength building and good nutrition, so we’re always glad to answer dietary questions about nutrition, since it’s such an important part of any fitness program.
What are the best low carb veggies if you’re on a keto dietary plan?
There’s a rule of thumb for finding the best veggies for a keto diet. If it grows above the ground, it’s normally keto friendly and lower in carbohydrates. Root vegetables, those that grow beneath the ground are normally higher in carbohydrates and not the top choice for a keto diet. For example, spinach, asparagus, cabbage and tomatoes all grow above ground and are all examples of vegetables that contain three or fewer net carbs per 3 ½ oz serving. While the same size serving of onions is 8 carbs, sweet potatoes are 17 carbs and carrots are 7 net carbs.
Traditionally, vegetables with less than five carbs can be eaten without worry.
Most keto diets focus on consuming 20 net carbs or less for the best results. When you focus on above ground vegetables, you tend to have lower carbs, since the roots of the plant are often where food for the plant is stored. Potatoes for example, contain approximately 15 carbs per 100 grams. If you are attempting to eat fewer than 20 net carbs a day, that can wipe out most of your carbs for the day. Instead of a potato focus on green above ground vegetables like green cabbage and green bell peppers. The more colorful varieties like purple cabbage and red and yellow bell pepper, are often sweeter and have more carbs.
Leafy vegetables also tend to be lower in carbs.
Spinach is one leafy vegetable on the keto list. Cabbage, kale, lettuce and other greens are also veggies you can eat until you’re full, since they’re so low in carbs, it’s hard to eat so many that you destroy your diet. Brussel sprouts are also on the low carb end, and they’re delicious tossed with bacon. If you want a treat, green beans can be excellent when added to casseroles or stews.
- If you want a crunchy treat that is healthy and low in carbs, try making kale chips. It satisfies that urge for a crunchy, salty snack, while helping you stick within your allotted carbohydrate range.
- Another snack that’s unbelievably delicious and extremely keto friendly is lightly steamed baby asparagus that’s cooled and served with a lemon butter dip.
- If you miss making dishes with noodles, zucchini will come to your rescue. Use a spiralizer to make noodles or slice it thin for zucchini lasagna. It’s low calorie and even people not on a keto diet will love it.
- Both cauliflower and avocados—which is actually a fruit—are great on keto diets. Create a guacamole dip from the avocado that adds healthy fat to your diet and make a keto friendly pizza crust from the cauliflower.
For more information, contact us today at Revolution Training