Kickstarting the year by going on a keto diet? You’re a champ! I’ve curated the 5 best Asian keto ingredients to help you cut off those carbs without cutting out on flavors. If you simply want to eat smarter and develop healthier eating habits, I’ve also listed down some healthy food for working out and weight management.
5 Must-Have Asian Keto Ingredients
Asian Ingredients for your Keto Diet Food Plan
Low carb and high fat, that’s the formula for a ketogenic diet. Luckily, a lot of Asia’s best condiments offer just that. You may be bidding farewell to rice and noodles to keep up with this lifestyle but there are plenty of options to make you enjoy this kind of diet.
Let’s jump right into the list of keto-friendly Asian ingredients!
Coconut Aminos is one of the best and most popular ingredients used, not just for keto diets, but all types of diet food plans. Paleo, vegan, kosher, low-calorie–you name it!
This coconut-based seasoning is organic, soy-free, gluten-free, and low-glycemic. To give you a low down on what that means, low glycemic food helps slow down the release of glucose in your body so it doesn’t trigger a spike in your blood sugar levels.
Made with natural coconut sap and mineral-rich sea salt, each bottle is pumped with a wide range of minerals, vitamin C, broad-spectrum B vitamins, 17 amino acids, and has a nearly neutral pH.
In terms of taste, no need to worry about finding odd coconut flavors where they shouldn’t be. The coconut sap is fermented with sea salt which erases any trace of coconut flavors and replaces it with the same kick of umami from the original counterparts.
2. Sesame Oil
Avocado oil may be the choice of oil for keto food but sesame oil is a great option too! This smoky and nutty-tasting flavoring oil is a wonderful source of healthy fatty acids– 82% of unsaturated fatty acids to be exact, which makes it good for the heart. It’s also rich in Omega-6 which plays an important role in heart disease prevention. I call it the liquid gold for recipes!
Just take extra care of the smoke point while cooking it. Since sesame oil burns rather quickly, you’ll want to keep a watchful eye on your heat so you can get the most out of its nutrients.
3. Tamari Sauce
Tamari sauce is another good soy sauce alternative. Because both are byproducts of fermented soybeans, they have the same dark color and that rich savory taste. However, there’s no wheat in tamari. The absence of wheat also indicates the absence of gluten.
Tamari is a healthy alternative to soy sauce but the debate still rages on in several food communities: is tamari sauce keto or not? The best way to check is through the label! If it says 0g in carbs, then you’re in luck. If it says 1g, that’s also more than acceptable! A gram of carbohydrates per serving will not hurt nor derail your keto diet as long as you eat in moderation. You don’t want to collect those carbs by adding more and more servings.
Carbs per serving: 0g
Calories: 0 per teaspoon
Recipe Ideas: Keto Spicy Korean Chicken Wings (replace gochujang with hot sauce)
Keto dieters should be ready to embrace heat if they want to spice things up! Most hot sauces are keto-friendly because they are typically made with chili peppers, vinegar, and other powdered spices only. Watch out for tomato-based ingredients like ketchup that may raise the sugar level of the hot sauce. As with all other ingredients, always check the label when in doubt.
Before you attempt playing with fiery Korean flavors with your keto recipe, you may want to steer clear from gochujang hot pepper paste because they contain plenty of carbs from its wheat flour ingredients. But good news: gochugaru hot pepper powder is all clear, which happens to be the main ingredient of Seoul Kimchi Hot Sauce.
Carbs per serving: 1g
Calories: 35 per teaspoon
Recipe Ideas: As a topping for low-carb Kung Pao Chicken, salads, and wraps
Thankfully, you don’t have to give up the super delicious and must-have chili garlic sauce when going keto. No, I’m not talking about the white garlic sauce that uses When you look at the nutrition facts of most chili garlic oils, it’s zeros across the board except for fat– a good indication for those looking for keto ingredients.
More Diet Food and Drinks for Weight Loss
Keto diet and soy milk may not pair well but this plant-based drink is a great alternative for lactose-intolerant individuals and those looking to take a break from sugary milk teas and dairy. Vita Soy’s soy milk is a popular plant-based milk alternative that has won the hearts of many due to its nostalgic soybean taste and silky texture. They also have low-calorie fruit juices and teas that are perfect for lighter-tasting smoothies and protein shakes! With a convenient juice box packaging, you can even bring it to the gym and enjoy it as it is after your sweat sesh.
2. Hot Tea
Tea has long been associated with weight loss properties, but which tea exactly should you drink for such a cause? First one is green tea or matcha tea. Numerous studies link the antioxidant catechins found in green tea with weight loss and fat loss. Not only does it help with your weight woes, it tastes pretty good too! Oolong tea is also said to increase one's metabolism, which helps your body burn fat more efficiently. Whichever your pick is, a warm cup of tea can calm your mental state which is just as essential as taking care of your physical body.
Carbs serve as your body’s fuel for plenty of sports, like running, cycling, and other cardio-intensive activities. Instead of consuming white rice which may raise your blood sugar levels, consider going for mung bean noodles. It may contain a reasonable amount of carbs but it’s also high in fiber, iron, and protein–all of which are needed for your body to function at its best.
What’s the use of heading to the gym when you don’t have the energy to perform well. Slurp away!
We all love a good snack, especially those from Annie Chun! Their seaweed snacks are the real definition of lightness inside and out. The nori sheets are crispy yet airy and come in at 15 calories per serving. Before you hit the gym and burn those calories, try adding your nori sheets in your pre-workout energy rice balls for a guilt-free addition of briny, savory flavors.
When taking on new fitness challenges and dieting goals, the key is to eat smarter and not less. No need to say goodbye to your favorite Asian recipes. Just switch to keto alternatives to help you on your way!
Remember that food serves to fuel and nourish your body, not just for everyday activities, but for fun workouts too! I hope the Asian keto diet foods and ingredients I shared help you on your weight loss journey.
For healthy Asian food selections, shop at Karman Foods!
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