How Do I Start a Keto Diet? 6 Easy Steps to Get Started

What is a Keto Diet?

Female eating at table while looking at her phone

The underlying foundation of a keto diet is to allow your body to achieve a state of ketosis. Ketosis is when your body burns fat instead of using carbohydrates and sugars as an energy source. For this to happen, a keto diet severely limits the intake of carbs while upping the quantities of fat you eat along with protein.

For many used to traditional calorie-counting diets, this may seem counterintuitive, but a keto diet trains your body to use fat for fuel. It is easier for your system to convert carbs into energy. So if you eat too many carbs while on a keto diet, you will come out of ketosis, and your body will start storing fat once again.

In this sense, the keto diet is quite a strict one. You can't ease yourself into a keto diet because you've got to achieve ketosis and maintain that state. A day's binge on carbs, or even one carb-heavy meal, and you will have to start over.

You seek a 75% fat, 20% protein, and just 5% carbs balance for a standard keto diet. You do have to plan, particularly in the early days. After a while, it becomes second nature, and, while not letting the carbs sneak in, you will be able to relax.

What are the Staples of a Keto Diet?

Foods for a keto diet: Salmon, avocado, eggs, meat, poultry, vegetables

You are looking for high-fat foods, supported by healthy protein and very few carbs. Here are a few of the top keto-friendly things that should be on your grocery list: 

  • Fish, particularly oily fish like salmon and sardines, are perfect for a keto diet.
  • Eggs are a keto diet go-to. Cheap, protein-filled, and you can cook them in so many ways.
  • Low-carb veggies are a must; you need the all-important micronutrients they contain to keep your body healthy. Avoid starchy potatoes and beets and stick to leafy green vegetables, particularly cauliflower, broccoli, and kale.
  • Meat, particularly grass-fed beef, is another excellent choice for protein on a keto diet. Chicken is fine, though thighs are better than breast meat because of the extra fat (and flavor!), and beef and lamb is even better.
  • Cheese, yogurt, butter, and cream are tasty, low in carbohydrates, and provide lots of fat.
  • Avocados, full of healthy fats, stuffed with vitamins and minerals, and lots of all-important fiber – perfect!
  • Nuts and seeds are great fiber providers and super handy as a quick snack (though you've got to be a little cautious of how many you eat and which – as some nuts contain higher levels of carbohydrates than others)

What Can't I Eat on a Keto Diet?

Burgers, chips, and soda

There are a few things you should steer clear of on a keto diet as they contain just too many carbs. Here are some examples:

  • Milk (from animal sources), whatever its fat content, has way too many carbohydrates to be part of a keto diet. Stick to low-carb alternatives. Remember, milk makes baby cows grow fast!
  • Grains (and everything made from them) like wheat, barley, and rice are carb-filled.
  • Sugary foods and beverages. It's way too easy to be kicked out of ketosis if you start consuming sugar. Stick to zero or diet versions if you're a soda addict. 
  • While nuts and seeds are generally good, beans, peas, and lentils should be no part of a keto diet.

To stay on a keto diet, you have to train yourself to avoid the things that lots of us love to eat made from the above foodstuffs. So, no potato chips, no fries, no pasta, no bread. Harsh, but there are plenty of alternatives available, and you get used to it pretty quickly.

How Can I Come Up with Keto Meal Ideas? 

The internet is your friend. The keto diet is trendy today, and there are hundreds of websites and blogs filled with flavorsome, easy to prepare keto-friendly recipes. You'll soon discover your favorite blogs.

Can I Snack on a Keto Diet? 5 Keto Snacks Ideas

Jerky and nuts on a wooden board

Though a well-planned keto diet should mean we don't need in-between meal snacks, sometimes life throws us a curveball, and we have to eat on the move or are late for a planned meal. Don't worry; there are plenty of snacks out there that are keto. Here are a few:

  1. Cheese: Easy to find, full of fat and taste.
  2. Nuts: Particularly Brazils, pecans, macadamia, walnut, and almonds.
  3. Dried Meats: Jerky is ideal for snacking on – make sure you check the packaging. 
  4. Donuts: No regular ones, but how about our Keto Pumpkin Spice Donuts? You can see all our keto-friendly donut flavors here!
  5. Bagels: Again, not from a bakery, our Everything Bagel is super low in carbs but incredibly delicious. We've also got a range of other flavors, which you can find here.

You really should check our Best Sellers page for lots of other great keto snacks.

What Desserts Can I Eat on a Keto Diet? 5 Keto Dessert Ideas

PBH Foods Keto Cinnamon Donuts

There are a lot of yummy keto-friendly desserts available; you just need to avoid sugar. There are a ton of recipes for keto desserts to make at home or buy some ready-made. Here are only a few of the best:

  1. Keto Cinnamon Donut (we'll deliver them straight to your door!)
  2. Keto Fudge Cookies (as above!)
  3. Keto Strawberry Toaster Pastries (as above!)
  4. Sugar-Free Cheesecake (recipe to make at home) 
  5. Keto Ice Cream (recipe to make at home – just four ingredients)

Many people would benefit from going on a keto diet. Yes, it does need planning, and you have to stick with it to get the benefits. But the rewards are many, and as we've shown, it's not that difficult and not tedious! And you're not alone. There's a whole community out there willing to help you make this healthy move. See our best sellers here to see more of our keto snacks and keto desserts to help you stay on track.

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