The ketogenic or keto diet is a high-fat, low-carb eating plan that has grown in popularity for weight loss and other health benefits such as diabetes management.
Keto diets typically restrict carb intake to less than 50 grams a day, which could lead to nutrient deficiencies that can cause unpleasant adverse effects. Supplements can help people on a keto diet maintain their energy levels and maximize the benefits of the diet.
As with any supplement, consult a doctor or nutritionist to see which ones are safe and effective for you.
11 keto supplements
1. Omega-3 fatty acids
Although all types of fats are allowed in a keto diet, it is best to focus on healthy fats such as polyunsaturated fats rather than saturated and trans fats.
Omega-3 fatty acids help lower inflammation, improve blood cholesterol levels, and reduce insulin resistance. To boost your intake of these healthy fats, try to incorporate fatty fish in your diet, such as salmon, sardines, mackerel, trout, and tuna.
2. Medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil
MCT oil provides you with a concentrated dose of MCTs, which are fats that are easily absorbed and used by the body to generate energy.
MCT oil is usually made from palm kernel or coconut oil and plays a significant role in lowering inflammation and improving exercise performance. By increasing your fat intake, MCTs can help you stay in ketosis as well as promote satiety, which is helpful if you are following a keto diet for weight loss.
The keto diet can lead to mineral deficiencies since you have to limit your intake of grains and fruits. You can offset this loss of minerals with supplements that contain magnesium, calcium, sodium, and potassium, which are important for maintaining fluid balance, regulating blood pressure, producing energy, and controlling blood sugar.
4. Exogenous ketones
When you are on a keto diet, your goal is to produce ketones from stored fat that your body can use for fuel. Exogenous ketones can help you boost your energy levels by increasing ketone levels in your blood.
Ketone supplements can be taken before a workout, between meals, or while fasting and may help decrease appetite, boost athletic performance, and speed up post-workout recovery.
5. Vitamin supplements
Since keto diets are fairly restrictive, you may need to take vitamin supplements to prevent vitamin deficiencies. Keto diets can also cause stress, irritability, fatigue, and other psychological symptoms, which you may be able to address by consuming supplements that provide you with vitamins that may be missing from your diet.
Creatine supplements are especially beneficial for people who want to improve their exercise performance since they are meant to improve muscle mass. Studies have shown that creatine supplements can help you recover faster from strenuous exercise and injuries.
7. Whey or vegan protein
Good-quality whey or vegan protein supplements such as pea protein powder or soy protein powder can help you meet your protein requirements and stay satiated while on a keto diet. Make sure to check labels to make sure the carb content will not disrupt ketosis.
8. Greens powder
Although you may be eating plenty of vegetables on a keto diet, you may find it difficult at times to eat enough plant foods to get the vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants you need for optimal health. Greens powders often contain a mixture of vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, kale, and other nutritious greens that can help you boost your vegetable intake.
9. Amino complex
Amino complex supplements contain a mixture of essential amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein and some of which cannot be produced naturally by the body. Some amino complex supplements may only contain three types of essential amino acids—leucine, isoleucine, and valine, which are called branched-chain amino acid supplements. These amino acids are readily absorbed by the body and help with muscle strength and recovery.
Since the keto diet limits the intake of whole grains, legumes, many fruits, and starchy vegetables, you may need to up your fiber intake in order to avoid constipation, indigestion, and other digestive problems caused by poor gut health.
11. Digestive enzymes
The keto diet focuses on eating more fats and proteins, which can cause digestive problems if you are not used to eating this way. Digestive enzymes can help combat side effects such as bloating, nausea, and diarrhea.
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