Looking at the keto food pyramid, you likely noticed that the foods listed are real, wholesome foods. The keto diet truly is based on eating wholesome, minimally processed ingredients. There are two reasons for this:
1) Easier to Track Your Macros
In order to keep track of your macros, you need to know what's in your food. That's much harder when you're eating pre-packaged, ready-made meals.
2) Essential for Health
The ultimate goal of keto is better health. A sure way to improve health is eating wholesome foods as these contain healthful nutrients and are free of additives, preservatives, hidden carbs, pesticides, and other harmful chemicals.
Generally speaking, you should ideally go for organic, grass-fed, and Pasture-raised ingredients which you will find on the keto food pyramid. If that's not possible, simply go for the least processed ingredients you can find. Good examples of quality foods to fill your pantry with include:
Studies show that milk from grass-fed cows contained more omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants than cows fed hay or grains [4, 5]. Studies also show that our diets are deficient in these particular essential acids .
Organic food contains less pesticides and antibiotics than conventionally-grown food . Organic foods also have greater levels of some nutrients like vitamin C, iron, magnesium, and phosphorous .
Leafy greens are good to eat on every diet, but especially on keto. These are low in carbs, high in fiber, and rich in vitamins, minerals, and flavonoids. Studies show that a diet rich in leafy, green vegetables protects the brain against age-related cognitive decline .
Olive oil, coconut oil, and macadamia nut oil are all great keto options. These are at the base of the keto food pyramid because they're 100% fat. Adding them to every meal helps you meet your daily requirements for fat. And besides that, you also boost your health, especially with MUFA-rich olive and macadamia nut oils.
Pasture-raised & free-range
Animals raised this way experience lower levels of stress, see more sunlight, and are generally healthier than conventionally farmed animals. As a result, the meat, eggs, and dairy from these animals are healthier but also tastier. Since you'll be eating more of these foods on keto, it's best to pick the healthiest kind.
The keto food pyramid often does not list keto staples like coconut and almond flour, almond milk, peanut butter, lard, stevia, MCT oil, or collagen peptides anywhere on the keto food pyramid. That's because these ingredients are not necessary for the keto diet to work or for your health. They are, however, helpful, and you can see them as great additions to your basic keto plan.