Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids:The biggest problem I observed with the vegan ketogenic diet is the distribution of fatty acids. If not taken care of, the omega-6 content of the vegan keto diet can get excessively high. And this becomes a problem, because omega-6 fatty acids tend to become inflammatory if eaten in excess.
|Walnuts are healthy only in limited quantities on vegan keto.|
To reap the anti inflammatory benefits of the ketogenic diet, it is important to keep a good ratio of omega-3 to omega-6. The ratio should ideally be kept between 1:1 and 1:4 of omega-3 to omega-6.
From my personal experience I have found that it is also important to keep the total amount of omega-6 as low as possible. It does not help to try to compensate a high intake of omega-6 with a high intake of omega-3. Those fatty acids are essential, but only in small amounts. Any excess exceeds the bodys capacity to handle them properly.
What amount is too high? I have found intakes of omega-6 below 15gr per day to be okay.
This means the following nuts and seeds need to be resitricted: walnuts, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds. But also almonds and peanuts to a lesser degree. This makes the vegan ketogenic diet even more restrictive to some people.
The focus should be put on coconuts, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, pistachios, chia seeds, hemp seeds, avocados, olive oil and high oleic varieties of peanuts and sunflower seeds. Flax seeds should be added to the daily diet in amounts of about 20-30gr per day.
I have recently found a source of high oleic peanuts and added them to my diet. They have made this diet a lot more sustainable. I love peanuts and being able to eat them daily made them the best discovery for this diet.
Roasted Nuts and Seeds:
The second biggest trap you could fall into are roasted nuts and seeds. Especially store bought roasted nuts, where you can't control the temperature. This might be one of the reasons why you don't feel good on a plant-based keto diet. Roasted nuts and seeds are often fried in cheap omega-6-rich vegetable oils. These should be avoided at all cost, if your aim is optimal health and longevity.
The roasting process oxidizes the unsaturated fatty acids and makes them act as free radicals in the body. The vitamin E content of roasted nuts is greatly reduced.
The same goes for nut and seed butters. Often times they are roasted and then ground into a paste at high processing temperatures.
Solution: Buy raw nuts or seeds and roast them yourself so you can control temperature and time. I recommend you roast them for 20min at 120°C, just to the point where they are fully cooked but have not yet turned brown.
For nut-butters, I have found brands that use no or low roasting temperatures and grind them carefully. You need to try a few until you find the best ones.
I hope these tips will help you reap the benefits of a plant-based low carb or ketogenic diet, loose weight, enjoy your food, feel satisfied and mentally sharp, all without having to eat tons of animal products that harm our environment and our health.