A vegetarian keto diet became more and more popular. We’re taking a look at the pros and cons of the vegan keto meal plan and see what about this diet could help people and what risks there are.
Some of the points are be comparing this diet directly to a standard keto diet some are be comparing it to a standard vegan diet and of course, we’re looking at the research. We don’t have specific clinical trials on a vegan keto diet.
Vegetarian keto – what about fat
You probably already know that a ketogenic diet puts you in the state of ketosis where your body burns ketones for fuel which are derived from fat instead of burning carb derived fuels which your body does burn if it has the choice. On a keto diet, you take that choice away and that’s why you eat about 70 to 80 percent of total calories from fat and only about 5 to 10 percent of calories from carbohydrates.
A standard keto diet is loaded with meat and other animal products.
A vegetarian keto diet is different. At first glance, a vegan diet, and a keto diet don’t seem like they could be merged pretty well.
The vegetarian keto diet doesn’t include animals it doesn’t include animal fat. You have no atherogenic or carcinogenic animal products like a standard vegan diet.
On a vegan keto diet especially because of vegans on average have way lower levels of LDL or bad cholesterol than meat-eaters.
Let’s look at two specific medical reasons. This could really make a difference.
First of all, a ketogenic diet is often used for children with epilepsy. They get to create results in stopping seizures but this could offer a way to do that without accelerating their artery-clogging prematurely at a crazy rate. And yes low-carb diets have been shown to accelerate artery clogging. This study demonstrated that and there’s no reason to believe that the high meat high saturated animal fat keto diets that people are going on are have a magically different effect. They’re still clog arteries.
There’s been a lot of hope with how a ketogenic diet can help people with Alzheimer’s. In Alzheimer’s there are issues with energy transport to brain cells but ketones offer a sort of a backdoor energy source that might help brains survive longer.
Here’s the thing most people aren’t aware that Alzheimer’s is large if not mainly a disease of clogged brain arteries. If you’re eating a high animal fat low carb keto diet you’re get even thicker beta-amyloid plaques and do more brain damage and get fewer nutrients into your brain.
Now it’s unclear whether or not a vegan keto diet would actually unclog arteries. But it’s give your arteries a way better chance so it’s a win-win for getting those ketones to your brain and keeping those brain arteries more clear.
A final point on the proof removing animals from the diet you’re has a way lower animal impact. Doing way less harm to animals and also a lower planetary impact as well while. Standard keto diets mean you’re taking a high meat diet.
Keto adverse effects
Now let’s move on to potentially adverse effects. List of long term keto adverse effects is long.
I can’t say with confidence that doing a long term vegan ketogenic diet is allow you to dodge all of these effects.
We have all of the blood acidifying related issues like the skeletal issues the growth issues in children we have the kidney issues how the children on standard keto diets, we have heart issues and even death is on that list and a lot of these definitely are driven by ketosis, through ketosis of specific issues. But how much did the animal aspect of that diet play a role we don’t know.
A vegan keto diet is a high antioxidant diet.
Is this really high antioxidant high plant aspect of the diet possibly buffer from some of these negative effects.
People get really crazy and pseudo-scientific about alkalinity but could the increased alkalinity of the plant-based diet somehow buffer the acidity of the blood and prevent kidney stones for example.
I’ve seen in many vegan proponents say “Yes you absolutely can eat a decent amount of berries and still meet your macronutrient goals on a vegan keto diet”.
But having higher antioxidants probably helps buffer shield any damage that’s happen in pretty much any negative process that’s going on your body. Oxidative stress is one of the main forces in virtually every disease. But that still doesn’t mean it’s make you immune to some of these adverse effects.
What could be the biggest con undo all of that artery gain and that is that the current trend on a vegan keto diet is to rely heavily on processed oil specifically coconut oil to reach that 70-80 % fat.
The most convenient thing to eat is oil and so you can pretty much be eating any assortment of low-calorie vegetables with a ton of oil on it and meet your keto targets. Coconut oil, in particular, is very high in saturated fat and studies show that it raises LDL or bad cholesterol but not quite as bad as butter.
People also like to use the MCT oil because it helps get people into ketosis however that is literally a saturated fat.
There’s no reason that you absolutely have to be eating high saturated fat oils. You could be eating lower saturated fat higher omega-3 oils like canola oil.
There are many whole plant foods that hit the 70 to 80% fat mark particularly best keto nuts like macadamia, or avocado, olives, peanuts, walnuts, almonds, tahini, pumpkin seeds.
Whenever you would be putting oil on you could throw a nutty sauce on and you have some other foods that are a little bit further behind but could still have a role in your menu. That is like flax and chia (66 and 53 percent fat).
To stay in the ketosis so you could technically use something like MCT oil for just three days and then never again.
Another experience-based piece of information that heard is that if you are doing more exercise then you don’t need to eat quite as high fat you can get away with eating slightly lower fat.
Lose weight on a keto diet
A lot of people go on a keto diet because they want to lose weight especially a standard keto diet.
But from the research is looking at in the initial period there is a weight loss that people will get really happy about on a keto diet.
That actually is not fat loss even though they think.
That initial weight loss was mostly lean not fat. This is simply burning off your glycogen which weighs a certain amount and of course the moment you go back off the keto diet you’re just gain that and that explains some of the rebound.
That isn’t to say that there’s no way you could lose fat on this diet obviously long term. You can do that on any diet as long as you’re lowering your energy.
If you’re vegan who would just want to do this for weight loss you have to look at things like the broad study which was and eat as much as you want high carb whole food vegan diet.
They had the most weight loss that the research hasn’t seen at six and twelve months which is huge so eating as many whole carbs many potatoes and whole grain pastas and so forth might be an easier route than doing the vegan keto.