Have you ever asked yourself or your friend if you can eat bananas or green bananas on a Keto diet? Well, you are at the perfect place to find the answer to such a question.
Starting a new diet means you have to learn what foods you can and can’t eat. If you’ve recently started a keto diet you likely have a lot of questions on what foods aren’t allowed.
One common question those on the keto diet have is can you eat bananas on a keto diet? Unfortunately for banana lovers, you can’t eat bananas on the keto diet. Simply put, bananas are too high in carbs to have a place in the keto diet.
We will go over the basics of the keto diet, the nutritional aspect of bananas, and present some fruits you can have in place of bananas.
Table of Contents
What Is The Keto Diet?
In a keto diet your body relies on mostly fats and protein, with very little carbohydrates allowed. In fact, a keto diet generally only allows for the body to only get 5% of its energy from carbs!
Removing carbs is a big change for most of us, as our bodies naturally make energy from carbs. When you remove them from your diet your body goes into a state of “ketosis.”
Ketosis is when your body will start breaking down stored fat to use as energy due to the lack of carbs in your system.
Which Foods Are Allowed On A Keto Diet?
If you’re following a strict keto diet, you should know what foods are allowed. The following foods are encouraged for keto-dieters:
- Fish and other seafood,
- Chicken and other poultry,
- Low-carb vegetables,
- Nuts and seeds,
- Healthy oils,
- Greek yogurt (Unsweetened and unflavored),
- Tea, and
- Dark chocolate.
As you might have noticed, bananas are not on this list, there is a reason for this. We will discuss bananas specifically in just a moment, but first we want to briefly go over the food groups NOT allowed on a keto diet.
Which Foods Aren’t Allowed On A Keto Diet?
Now that you understand the foods that are allowed on keto, we want to discuss some foods that aren’t considered a part of the keto diet:
- Sweetened yogurt,
- High-starch vegetables,
- High-sugar fruits,
- Sugar (in all forms),
Bananas would likely be considered a high-sugar fruit, which helps answer our next question.
Do Bananas Fit Into The Keto Diet? (Green Bananas)
As you might be aware, bananas are a high-sugar fruit. According to the USDA, one medium-sized, ripe banana has 23 grams of carbs.
Since keto is all about cutting carbs, it isn’t advised to eat bananas on this diet if you truly want your body to go into a state of ketosis.
If you are using the keto diet for health reasons, such as to lose weight, it isn’t recommended to eat bananas at all.
One banana would likely use your entire carb allowance for the day and then some, which isn’t practical for most keto dieters.
If you’ve been on the keto diet for a longer period of time and have met or exceeded your weight goals, it won’t be as big of a deal to throw a banana into your diet every so often. But, if you are trying to stay true to the keto diet and stay in ketosis, it is best to stay away.
Can I Substitute Bananas With Anything?
If you’re really craving the flavor of banana and have been disappointed to learn they aren’t allowed on keto, there is an option to incorporate the flavor of bananas into your recipes.
Banana extract is a great way to make recipes such as banana bread, banana muffins, or banana pancakes fit into the keto diet.
This banana extract is made from real bananas and packs a powerful flavor punch, but it lacks the carbs that real bananas have, making it a keto-friendly substitute.
Which Fruits Can I Eat On Keto?
If you aren’t after the specific flavor of bananas you can choose to substitute a different fruit for your daily banana.
The popular fruit of choice for those on the keto diet is berries! Berries are a high-fiber and low-carb fruit that can fulfill your fruit craving.
If you’re curious of how berries compare to bananas carb wise, see the following list per 1/2 cup of each berry:
- Strawberries: 3 grams of net carbs (6 grams of total carbs);
- Blackberries: 3 grams of net carbs (7 grams of total carbs);
- Raspberries: 3 grams of net carbs (7 grams of total carbs); and
- Blueberries: 9 grams of net carbs (11 grams of total carbs).
As you can see, even blueberries, the highest carb choice, have 14 grams less carbs than a medium sized banana.
While you still need to ensure you aren’t eating too many berries as they are fairly high in sugar, you can absolutely incorporate around 1/2 cup every day into your keto diet.
What Can I Use In My Smoothies To Thicken Them?
Banana fanatics likely use them in their smoothies as they help produce a creamier, ticker smoothie than one made with only fruit, veggies, and liquid.
If you’re looking for a banana substitute in your smoothie you should try an avocado! Avocados will produce a similar consistency as bananas, and are considered a heart-healthy fat.
Avocados contain high amounts of potassium, and half of an avocado contains only 9 grams of carbs, but 7 grams of these are fiber.
Final Thoughts: Bananas Are NOT Keto
We’ve come to the conclusion that bananas are unfortunately NOT considered a part of the keto diet. If you are on a strict keto diet then it isn’t recommended to include bananas in your daily diet.
This could hurt your chances of fully getting your body into ketosis and limit your food options for the remainder of your day.
If you aren’t following the keto diet as strictly, or you’ve already met your goals from the diet, you could consider adding bananas back in minimally.
Adding half a banana to your smoothie every so often would be acceptable, as long as you are cutting carbs in other areas for the day to make up for it.
We would like to conclude by saying that you should always consult with your doctor before taking on an extreme diet such as the keto diet. This will ensure it is the right diet for you and help you make sure you are getting the right nutrients every day.
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