The Ketotarian Diet Is A Plant-Based Alternative To Keto—Here's How It Works

It combines the best parts of keto with a flexible plant-based protocol!

How Eating a Plant-Based Diet Could Literally Save Your Life

Oh you guys. What a year it’s been for diets—we’ve explored everything from ketogenic and mild keto to SOS-free and pegan—yet still new ones keep popping up. Keto seems to have been the most popular diet of the year— however it’s infamously meat and dairy heavy, which comes with its own host of health problems.

Luckily, there is an answer for those who prefer a more plant-centric way of eating but still want the benefits of the ketogenic diet. Ketotarian is being hailed as the best choice out there for flighting inflammation, so here’s the deal with this new, intriguing sounding diet.

It’s a combination approach

Ketotarian is all about combining aspects of the keto with either a vegan, vegetarian or pescetarian diet. Essentially; it’s a plant-based version of keto. ‘Cause despite its controversy, there are definite plus sides to keto. Originally developed as an approach for children with seizure disorders and then thrust into the spotlight for its immense fat-burning capabilities, keto has been proven to stabilise blood sugar and help burn fat. However, it’s also been slammed as an unsustainable approach to weight-loss, with critics arguing that as soon as someone eases off on putting their body into ketosis, the weight will quickly creep back on.

The plant-based element to ketotarian balances these negatives out, thanks to its ability to fight inflammation and detoxify. At the same time, it prevents plant-based eaters from turning to a carb-heavy diet, which is extremely common and can be detrimental to one’s health.

Woman holding a basket full of fresh vegetables.
Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

It’s still high fat

Yup, ketotarian is still all about that fat! It’s low-carb, moderate-protein and high-fat, which means putting your body into ketosis, with a decidedly plant-based twist. Instead of traditional high-fat keto foods like cheese, greek yoghurt, meat, eggs, butter and cream, the ketotarian way involves consuming avocado, olives, olive oil, nuts and coconut in their place.

Low-carb vegetables are still preferable, with dark leafy greens reigning superior, and legumes still to be avoided, thanks to the pesky lectins (which can increase inflammation and compromise gut health.)

Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

It’s anti-inflammatory

According to Dr. Will Cole, author of Ketotarian, The (Mostly) Plant-Based Plan to Burn Fat, Boost Your Energy, Crush Your Cravings, and Calm Inflammation, the ketotarian diet is the optimal diet for fighting inflammation.

According to this source, it’s because putting your body into a state of ketosis through a ketotarian diet up-regulates the Nrf-2 pathway that are responsible for antioxidant gene induction, as well as turning on genes responsible for detox pathways in addition to cell function and inflammation. He says “when the Nrf-2 pathway is activated, it calms inflammation and activates the powerful anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 and down-regulates pro-inflammatory cytokines.”

The idea is that the entire diet is anti-inflammatory, so it takes out the guesswork of whether or not certain foods are going to make you inflamed. This makes it an especially good choice for people with chronic health conditions.

Reckon you’d be keen to give it a try? For recipe inspo think; fat-loaded smoothies, zucchini noodles with avocado pesto and pine nuts, or cauli-rice with Mexican stir-fried veggies and guacamole. Sold!

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