If you’re on the keto diet, you might be struggling to get enough fiber, as the keto diet focuses on healthy fats and protein and cuts down on common high-fiber sources like whole wheat or grain based carbs, fruit, starchy vegetables, beans and legumes. That’s why keto dieters may find themselves getting constipated as they adjust to the new diet plan, since there’s that shortage of fiber.
However, you can add in fiber while still keeping carbohydrate intake low. It’s about choosing the right low-carb foods that still have fiber content as well as supplementing if needed. There are many fiber supplements and boosters you can add to water or smoothies each day, which will help keep you regular and your gut happy. Here are a few ways to get that fiber dose when you’re on the keto diet or are simply just low in fiber intake in general.
Load Up on Leafy Greens
Green vegetables are low in carbs and keto approved, and they happen to be rich in fiber too. Some leafy green examples include spinach, kale and Swiss chard, which you can enjoy in salads, veggie-based side dishes with some healthy fat like avocado or olive oil, and even smoothies.
And Don’t Forget Cruciferous Veggies, Too
Beyond leafy greens, cruciferous veggies are also fiber-packed and low in carbs, so eating them regularly will help you reach your daily fiber requirements without going past your carb budget. Such veggies include broccoli, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage and more. You can eat them in a stir-fry, in soup, or as a topper on a bed of zoodles with olive oil or butter-based sauce.
Eat Nuts and Seeds Throughout the Day
Nuts, seeds and nut butter are not only low in carbs, but they are also good sources of healthy fats and moderate protein to hit the macronutrient requirements associated with the keto diet.
Nut butter tastes great in smoothies, as a sauce or dip for stir-fry meals or salads, or as a spread on low-carb toast. Seeds also bulk up dishes by adding in texture and are high in fiber and fats too, especially chia seeds in particular. Make trail mix at home with your favorite nuts and seeds to snack on during the day and use them as a breading or crust for meat, poultry and fish.
Eat Berries in Moderation
While fruit is generally off limits for keto dieters, berries are high in fiber and are actually keto-friendly, since they’re lower in carbs and sugar than other kinds of fruit. You don’t want to go overboard though if you’re really sticking with your daily carbohydrate intake maximum, so be sure to count them and adjust the rest of the day’s meal planning accordingly. You can enjoy berries in smoothies, unsweetened yogurt, salads, and more.
Make Avocado a Kitchen Staple
Avocado is a magical green fruit that hits all the marks: high in healthy fats, protein, electrolytes and yes, fiber. Eating more avocado will guarantee you’re hitting your fiber needs and also increasing your healthy fat intake too, which further helps you stay in ketosis. Use avocado in low carb, plant-based desserts like mousse or keto bombs, in smoothies, in creamy soups, or even halved and used as a base for low-carb, healthy fillings like colorful veggies, “fake fish” salad or egg-less substitutes, and more.
Get a Supplement
Fiber powders are easy to fit into your meals, and you can even just make it a habit of starting your day with a serving in your favorite iced coffee or tea, smoothie, or plain water. There are many greens-based fiber powders to choose from, which won’t have a high carbohydrate level or kick you out of ketosis. Start off small, with a serving a day, and let your body adjust to the higher intake of fiber naturally rather than overwhelming it at once.