Keto Diet

10 Tips To Get Enough Healthy Fats

get enough fats on keto

If you’ve been researching or living the keto lifestyle for quite some time, you’re probably familiar with the oft-repeated macronutrient ratios that achieve ketosis. This breakdown typically looks like 70-80% of your daily calories come from fat, 20-25% from protein, and 5-10% from carbohydrates. While nothing seems easier (and tastier) than getting 70% of your calories from fat, getting enough fat on a keto diet can be surprisingly difficult, especially when you’re just starting out. For those accustomed to a high-carb diet, adjusting macros to maintain ketosis can involve a significant learning curve. But to get ketosis right, including fat – especially from healthy sources – at every meal is a must.

This guide will walk you through the various types of fats and help you discover new and novel ways to increase your fat intake.

Why Getting Enough Fat is so Important on Keto

Getting enough fat in ketosis is not just a vague, nebulous wish. The right amount of fat (compared to protein and carbohydrates) is actually necessary to keep your body in a keto metabolic state, which burns fat for fuel.

If your macros are out of whack, with too little fat and too much protein or carbs, you won’t get all the benefits of a keto diet, such as weight loss and better blood sugar management.

Not only that, but if you’re not getting enough fat, you’re likely to feel hungry and low on energy, which makes the keto diet unsustainable.

Getting about 70% of your total calories from fat is the key to unlocking these goals.

Barriers to Eating Enough Fat on Keto

Multiple barriers may arise that prevent you from consuming enough fat on ketosis.

In a culture where most calories come from carbohydrates, changing your macronutrient counting may seem radical. Increasing rather than decreasing fat may feel unfamiliar, if not completely uncomfortable, and undoing a lifetime of carb-heavy patterns of eating cereal for breakfast, sandwiches for lunch, and pasta for dinner is not easy. In addition, when eating with others in a social setting, it is always challenging to break away from the crowd by making your own unique food choices.

The late twentieth century is filled with the message that fat is bad and that we should avoid it. While you may intellectually understand that these myths have since been debunked – and that a keto diet can help you achieve your health goals – applying this knowledge to real-world behavior change requires significant effort.

Best Sources of Fat on Keto

A keto diet can include both saturated and unsaturated categories of fats, but since the benefits of unsaturated fats are more fully documented, it’s best to focus on balance, favoring unsaturated fats with saturated fats sprinkled in.

One study found that a ratio of 20 percent saturated fats to 80 percent unsaturated fats led to long-term weight loss and improvements in blood markers of heart health such as triglyceride and cholesterol levels.

Everyone’s personal blend of keto-friendly food choices will look a little different, but here are some high-quality, high-fat options, including:

  • Fatty fish like salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines, and anchovies
  • Avocados and avocado products
  • Plant-based oils like olive oil, avocado oil, and walnut oil
  • Eggs
  • Full-fat dairy
  • Nuts and seeds (as well as nut and seed butters)
  • Beef, pork, and lamb

How to Eat More Fat on Keto

Need some real-world advice to increase your fat intake? We’ve got you covered. From breakfast to late night snacks, here are 10 practical ways to make friends with fat on keto.

1. Make Fat Bombs

Bombs are here! As the name implies, keto fat bombs are bite-sized balls that contain high-fat ingredients like cream cheese, nut butters, coconut oil, and other indulgent additives. (Think truffles, but with a higher fat content.) The combination of chocolate and peanut butter, strawberry and cheesecake, and caramelized coconut make these just the right keto-friendly dessert.

With a short ingredient list and only one bowl to prepare, keto fat bombs are usually pretty easy to make. Make a big batch at the beginning of the week and enjoy them after meals throughout the week.

2. Try Bulletproof Coffee

The jury is still out on whether or not it actually makes you bulletproof, but one thing bulletproof coffee will do is increase your fat intake first thing in the morning.

For the uninitiated, bulletproof coffee is a blend of brewed coffee, grass-fed butter and MCT oil. Recipes usually involve a ratio of two parts butter or ghee (e.g. 2 tablespoons) and one part MCT oil (e.g. 1 tablespoon) in 8 to 16 ounces of black coffee.

3. Enjoy Creamy Soups and Sauces

On other diets, you’ve probably avoided creamy soups and sauces because of their high fat and calorie content. But on a keto diet, you wouldn’t go for any old wimpy broths! Foods made with full-fat dairy products are actually desirable on this diet because they can increase your fat intake and thus put you in ketosis. So feel free to enjoy lobster bisque, alfredo sauce or salmon soup.

4. Use Multiple Fat Sources at Each Mealtime

You can’t eat enough fat in ketosis without a little creativity. That’s why it’s important to mix and match your fats at mealtime. For example, at breakfast, a basic avocado toast becomes more keto-friendly when a fried egg is added and sprinkled with melted cheese. At dinner, salmon can be dipped in a marinade of sesame oil, while low-carb vegetables can be roasted in olive oil and a handful of toasted nuts.

If you’re having trouble getting enough fat in keto, ask yourself at each meal how you can include fat from a variety of sources rather than just one ingredient.

5. Dunk Veggies in High-fat Dips

Everyone knows that raw vegetables are best when dipped in a dip. At lunchtime or as an appetizer before dinner, use low-carb vegetables such as celery or cucumber slices to scoop up creamy onion dip, ranch or blue cheese dip. If possible, try to use a dip made with olive or avocado oil rather than canola or soybean oil.

6. Roast Vegetables in Oil

Creamy dips aren’t the only fats that go well with vegetables. Healthy oils like olive oil and avocado oil can turn ordinary vegetables into crispy, grilled goodness.

As a simple side dish, drizzle olive oil liberally over broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, bell peppers or onions and roast in a high-heat oven (400 degrees or higher) for at least 20 minutes. From there, a quick seasoning with salt and pepper will maximize the flavor.

7. Sprinkle in Nuts and Seeds

Seeds and nuts can sneak extra monounsaturated fats into a variety of recipes. In granola recipes, sunflower seeds can replace half of the oats you normally use – or, if you’re eating traditional oatmeal, sprinkle seeds or nuts on top. Nuts and seeds can also add crunch to salads and vegetable dishes, while a nut-based crust can make pies more keto-friendly.

Of course, when it comes to snacking, there’s always something to mix up! Mix your favorite nuts and seeds with cacao nuts or shredded coconut for a healthy dose of fat.

8. Whip Up a Full-fat Dairy Smoothie

Full-fat dairy products get the stamp of approval in the keto diet. In smoothies, heavy cream, full-fat yogurt and whole milk (as long as you limit carbs from lactose) help make other keto-friendly ingredients, such as nut butters and low-carb fruits, go down smoothly.

9. Add Shredded Coconut to Snacks and Sweets

Coconut is one of the highest fat content fruits on earth. Half a cup of dried coconut contains 16.5 grams of fat. Whether fresh or dried, its fleshy interior can add fat to desserts, blended drinks, smoothies and more.

10. Load Up on Avocado

To get a lot of monounsaturated fat, eat more avocados. These high-fat heroes (technically fruits) are surprisingly versatile in a variety of recipes.

Thanks to their mild flavor and creamy texture, they add a cool, buttery flavor to low-carb wraps and sandwiches, bulk to lackluster smoothies, and a colorful touch to omelets and other egg-based dishes. And then, of course, guacamole is always a favorite at Mexicans to bring the party.

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