I was recently asked by a reader, “Is fried okra keto friendly?” Unfortunately, the answer isn’t as simple as it may seem. It turns out that there are several ingredients in the batter used to fry okra that isn’t keto-friendly, so this recipe isn’t something you should be eating regularly if you follow the ketogenic diet.
Here are some reasons why fried okra is not keto friendly, and why you should think twice before adding this tasty dish to your next recipe or meal plan.
Fried Okra isn’t keto-friendly because it contains carbs
Carbs are a big no-no on keto. Don’t forget that it’s a high-fat diet, and even healthy fats can be damaging if you eat too much of them. The whole point of getting into ketosis in the first place is to have your body run on fat as its primary fuel, rather than carbohydrates.
Fried okra also has more carbs than protein, which goes against another common rule of eating keto: focusing on eating more quality protein than carbs.
Fried okra contains inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids: You’ll want to keep your intake of inflammatory omega-6 fats low on keto because they’re pro-inflammatory. Fried okra isn’t great for weight loss either: It’s true that you can lose weight by eating fried foods-but it’s probably not what you think!
Fried Okra isn’t really good for you anyway
I’m going to say that straight out. If you are on a low-carb diet, there’s a good chance that almost anything deep-fried isn’t going to be your best choice when it comes to consuming food.
Deep frying is one of those things that can very easily throw off your overall dietary macros – especially if you aren’t careful about controlling how much oil you use in your fryer and how often you consume these types of items.
You really have to control yourself if you want to get results with a low-carb or ketogenic diet plan like Keto or Atkins.
Cooking with oil isn’t exactly a staple on the ketogenic diet
In fact, most nutritionists will tell you that it’s best to avoid oils altogether. Oils are usually made from seeds, nuts, or vegetables and have a high concentration of omega-6 fatty acids-fatty acids that can raise your risk for heart disease and other chronic health conditions. If you’re still asking is fried okra keto friendly the answer is going to be a resounding no.
And unlike whole food sources of fat, such as eggs or avocados, oils are easier to overconsume and may contribute to weight gain if you eat them in excess. Cooking with olive oil can also increase your intake of unhealthy monounsaturated fats as well as trans fats. Trans fats have been linked to higher risks for heart disease.
Okra doesn’t contain enough protein
To get into a state of ketosis, you need to limit your carb intake to 20 grams per day or less. According to the USDA, a 100-gram serving of raw green okra contains 7.45 grams of net carbs and just 1.93 grams of protein.
So, despite being high in nutrients like vitamin C, folate, and potassium, you’d have to eat eight servings (at 500 grams) for it to contain enough protein for weight loss – that’s almost four pounds!
Even when cooked, green okra has a net carb count of 5.8 grams per 100-gram serving. That means even if you cooked all of your vegetables in fat or oil instead of steaming them, they would still be off-limits on a ketogenic diet.
Healthier options are available than deep-frying
If you’re trying to stick to a healthy eating plan, there are many healthier options than deep frying. The most obvious choice would be baking it in an oven or using a non-stick skillet for sautéing.
Roasting can also be done on an open flame if you want to get really primitive about it. Fried foods are notorious for being loaded with extra fat and calories, but some foods pack more of a wallop than others.
For example, both pan-fried and deep-fried chicken can contain upwards of 500 calories per serving (and that’s without any dipping sauce). To ensure that your favorite southern comfort food doesn’t cause you to break your diet, simply switch out some of your cooking methods for better alternatives.
What about breaded okra? That isn’t healthy either!
Fried foods-even those with an additional health benefit like okra-can derail your health goals if you don’t watch how much you eat. In fact, one large portion of breaded & battered okra can contain up to 600 calories!
That means eating one small serving of crispy fried okra could easily add 300 calories to your meal. If you’re trying to lose weight, or maintain a healthy weight, that can be a huge problem!
It’s best to avoid breaded and battered foods altogether if you want to lose weight. If you absolutely must have breaded & battered foods, stick with small portions and keep track of how many calories they contain.
You won’t get fit or lose weight if you don’t want it bad enough.
It may seem harsh that you need to want to lose weight, but it’s true. If you’ve had problems with weight loss before, or if you don’t feel like you can control your cravings for certain foods, then realize that it’s time to start fresh with a different attitude toward dieting.
If your main focus isn’t on changing your lifestyle and sticking with an exercise plan because it makes you feel healthier and more comfortable in your own skin-if it’s just about getting skinny-then it won’t last.
Sticking to eating only healthy things will result in weight loss
This isn’t a secret. The science backs it up and even your grandmomma probably knew it. Unfortunately, we live in a world where many believe healthy food has to be boring and bland, so we just ignore all evidence to contrary.
To lose weight safely but quickly, learn how to enjoy eating only healthy foods without torturing yourself. You deserve better than just salad as an option for lunch!
With a little bit of practice and some tasty recipes, you’ll find it’s easy to have your cake and eat it too. The trick is finding simple ways to cook with healthy ingredients so that you don’t miss out on all those delicious comfort foods that are slowly killing you.
Your taste buds will thank you and your waistline will reward you.