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Carb Comparison: Fruits to Eat and Not to Eat on Keto

By Fitoru | 23 October 2018
keto chia pudding with berries

If you have just started your keto diet or you are strongly considering taking one on, exercise caution when making a carb comparison of what fruits to eat on keto. Sure, fruits are natural so they must be good to eat at any time and for any occasion, right? Wrong. Not all fruits are keto-friendly. In fact, some fruits can throw you out of ketogenesis completely, and you will need to start the process all over again. And who wants to constantly relive those pesky keto flu symptoms anyway? Repetitive headaches, stomachaches, irritability, and fatigue are never good incentives for dieting. Practicing your due diligence when it comes to selecting suitable fruits for your keto journey can eliminate certain dieting obstacles and anxieties typical for keto pros and newbies, alike.

Keto Is a Science

The most common reason why people choose the keto diet is because it yields the possibility for tremendous weight-loss success. And with proper adherence to the rules, keto dieting actually works for most people when other fad diets may fail. Restricting the body of carbohydrates, which reduces to glucose, depletes glycogen reserves, and the body instead uses fat as an alternate fuel source in the form of ketones during ketogenesis—a process which can take up to several days to kick in. Carb cheating during ketogenesis stops the process, since the body readily uses glycogen from carbohydrates as fuel and neglects your fat reserves as a primary fuel source for the time being.

Carb Comparison: Know Your Fruits

There are fruits for keto that you can consume in moderation while maintaining ketogenesis. No matter what you consume during your keto diet, you want to sustain consistent nutrient proportions, hovering as close to 70% fat, 25% protein, and 5% carbohydrates (or less) as possible each meal. These numbers may look easy to maintain, but, in fact, the Western diet is saturated with carbohydrates, and most of us are used to making our food selections accordingly. We’re quick to peel a banana, believing it to be an ideal between-meal snack. Not so with keto: One medium-sized banana, or approximately 118 grams, contains a whopping 27 grams of carbohydrates, 14 grams of sugar, or glucose, 1.3 grams of protein, and 0.4 grams of fat. Eating that lone starchy banana can knock your body out of ketogenesis. Other fruits not to eat on keto include:

  • Mango
  • Grapes
  • Papaya
  • Pineapple
  • Oranges
  • Apple

Yes, the one full apple a day adage is a falsehood when it comes to keto. One medium apple, or 182 grams, yields 25 carbohydrates and a shocking 19 grams of sugar. Compare these stats to blackberry’s keto nutrition. One cup of these succulent berries, or 144 grams, offers a modest 14 grams of carbohydrates and 7 grams of sugar. Here is a list of other fruits to eat on keto, but consume in moderation:

Fruits you should and should not eat on the keto diet
Fruits to eat and avoid while on the keto diet

Carb Cycling May Help

Strict keto diet rules can be daunting, especially if you are used to the occasional sugar high to get you through the day. Keto dieting can also be taxing on your social life, since choosing keto-feasible restaurant or take-out selections with your non-dieting friends can be quite difficult and at times impossible. Suffering carb cravings without seeing much weight loss at first, can also be discouraging. Although the jury is still out on its long-term weight-loss effectiveness, carbohydrate cycling may be a possibility. Carb cycling entails restricting carbohydrate intake on most days, but on a few days you intend to engage in intense activity, you can increase your carb intake but limit your selections to low-glycemic fruits. Make sure that you are engaging your large muscle groups on your high-intensity days for efficient carbohydrate burning. The more muscles you have, the more carbs you will burn. Many athletes that use keto dieting to sculpt their muscular physiques actually need to fuel their muscles with carbs during spurts of intense training. Strong muscles require carbohydrates for healthy growth and maintenance.  

Morale Is Important

If you are a fruit-lover with an athletic bent who seeks consistent weight-loss goals, carb cycling can help. But if you follow the keto diet for reasons other than weight loss—controlling seizures, epilepsy treatment, chronic obesity, or regulating a metabolic disorder—then carb cycling may not be a good idea. In these instances, it is even more important for you to closely monitor the fruits you consume, even fruits deemed safe for keto. Although helpful, nutrient-measuring tools may not suffice in these cases, and consulting your physician or dietician for exact nutrient macros is best. For those of us without major health concerns who want to loss weight and feel good doing it, seek out recipes that you like and have fun finding favorites. Keto dieting is a good time to try recipes that include keto fruits in ways you’ve never tried before. Never tried rhubarb before? Seek out a fruit recipe for delicious low-carbohydrate rhubarb pie snack bars. And there are many more keto fruit options to choose from out there!

For more information on the keto diet you can click here!

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