Health and weight-loss are the cornerstones of the keto diet. While limiting sugars and starches is a good start, it is also important to make sure you feed your microbiome on the keto diet.
How to Feed your microbiome on the keto diet:
A healthy microbiome requires three simple things:
- Limited sugars: Since limiting sugar is part of the standard keto diet, this is pretty easy to do. The only trick is to avoid keto-friendly sweeteners, like sugar alcohols, which will ferment in the digestive system and feed the wrong kind of gut bacteria and yeasts.
- Prebiotics: Fiber and resistant starches are perfect for feeding healthy gut bacteria. A healthy keto diet should feature a ton of vegetables. Even if you’re trying to get most of your calories from fat, a leaf of lettuce contains very little calories compared to 1 tbsp of olive oil. Psyllium husk (affiliate link) and flax are both perfect for feeding your microbiome on the keto diet.
- Probiotics: Probiotics are a good way to encourage diversity in your microbiome. I recommend making fermented foods instead of purchasing a probiotic supplement because you are guaranteed to get a good dose of live bacteria.
Here are 15 keto-friendly probiotic and prebiotic recipes.
- Yogurt: Culture homemade yogurt for 8 or more hours to ensure that very little lactose remains.
- Milk kefir: Like yogurt, a long ferment results in a very probiotic and low sugar beverage.
- Cultured butter: Homemade cultured butter is easy, fun and delicious.
- Probiotic whipping cream: It’s easy to culture whipping cream with buttermilk. It takes less than 24 hours on the kitchen counter.
Cultured Yogurt Alternatives
Even if you can’t tolerate dairy, there are many options for nut-based cultured yogurts.
- Coconut Milk Yogurt: Cultured coconut cream is thick, creamy and delicious.
- Cashew Yogurt: A thick and sour “yogurt” can be made out of soaked and blended cashews.
- Almond milk yogurt: A drinkable probiotic yogurt that is absolutely delicious. Use the ground almonds for keto-friendly baking!
All vegetables can be fermented into delicious and probiotic pickles. Here are a few of my favorite recipes:
- Kimchi is a spicy fermented vegetable from Korea.
- Curtido is a sauerkraut-like condiment from El Salvador.
- Fermented salsa is party-perfect.
- Fermenting guacamole is a natural way to prevent browning.
- Pickled green beans are perfect served with meat and cheese.
There are so many delicious keto-friendly prebiotic recipes. Here are a few of my favourites:
- Grainy flaxseed crackers are super high in fiber and perfect with cheese.
- Psyllium husk bread is high in gut-friendly psyllium husk.
- Dandelion green salad: Raw dandelion greens are really high in fiber, so toss them into a salad for a good dose of prebiotics.