If you’re a coffee lover and you’ve just started following the keto diet, you probably find yourself wondering, “is coffee keto?” You’re not alone on this. Many other keto dieters are also curious about adding coffee to their diet.
The good news is, coffee can be part of a low carb diet, including keto. However, this will depend on the type of coffee. As you know, there are probably thousands of different coffee varieties in the world.
If you’re one of the many who asks, is coffee keto friendly, then this article is for you.
Related reading: What Is Keto Coffee and Should You Drink It?
Is Coffee Keto?
Drinking coffee on keto is definitely okay. In fact, it comes with many benefits. However, you need to be mindful of the ingredients that you add to your coffee. Some people like their coffee sweet, which may not work for the keto diet. Here are some ways on how to drink coffee without ruining your keto diet.
Have you got my Keto Coffee 101 guide? It’s full of helpful information and recipes for keto coffee. Click here to download it.
1. Always choose black coffee
Black coffee is the safest choice for those who are on the keto diet. This coffee does not have any added sugar and other ingredients that could ruin your diet. Black coffee also contains a small amount of calories and will not cause a spike in your blood sugar, so it’s ideal for those with diabetes.
Related reading: 6 Damaging Effects of Sugar
2. Consider adding heavy cream
If you don’t like the bitter taste of black coffee, consider adding heavy cream to it. Two tablespoons of heavy cream have less than two grams of carbs only, so that should be safe for keto.
If you don’t have heavy cream, consider adding almond milk or any keto-friendly creamer to give your black coffee a bit of flavor.
3. Add Butter to your Coffee
Another way to enjoy coffee on keto is to add butter to your coffee. Butter is ideal for your keto diet, as it’s carb-free and contains about 80% fat.
To get the most out of your butter coffee, use grass-fed butter. It’s healthier and a good source of vitamin A and the antioxidant beta-carotene. In addition, butter coffee can also help you to achieve your weight loss goals faster.
4. Blend with MCT oil
MCT oil is another popular ingredient that some keto dieters would add to their coffee. This oil is derived from coconuts and is known for its energy-boosting and fat-burning abilities.
It’s odorless and flavorless, so it won’t change the taste of your coffee. However, it can help you stay in ketosis while also providing several other weight loss benefits, such as increasing your metabolic rate and suppressing your appetite.
Related reading: Lumen Metabolism Tracker Review
4. Use low carb sweeteners
If you’re someone who prefers your coffee sweet, you can choose to add sweetener to your drink, but make sure it’s keto-friendly. Look for natural low-carb sweeteners such as monk fruit, erythritol, xylitol, and stevia.
While these sweeteners are usually used for baking, you can also add them to your coffee if you want to sweeten it a bit.
Effects of Caffeine on Keto
Caffeine is the main ingredient of coffee. It’s a natural stimulant that can also be found in tea, chocolate drinks, and other caffeinated beverages. This ingredient is the main reason why you feel energized after drinking a cup of your favorite coffee. But how does caffeine affect your keto diet?
Research shows that caffeine may help to increase metabolic rate and promotes fat loss. Some studies also suggest that caffeine may help to enhance ketone levels due to its fat-burning abilities.
Related reading: Can Keto Coffee Help You Lose Weight?
Although further research is needed to determine the exact effects of caffeine on keto, caffeine may benefit keto dieters in many ways. First, it helps to enhance mental focus, helping you to stay focused at work even when you’re on the keto diet.
As you may know, keto can make you suffer from the symptoms of keto flu that can affect your ability to perform.
The caffeine that you get from coffee will be sent to the brain through the bloodstream. Once in the brain, it will block the adenosine, an inhibitory neurotransmitter. As a result, the firing of neurons will be intensified. This can lead to improved memory and better energy.
Caffeine on its own is also believed to increase your body’s ketone levels, helping you to stay in ketosis even longer. A study that was published in the Canadian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology has found that those who consumed a 5.0 mg/kg dose of caffeine at breakfast have higher ketone levels in their bloodstream compared to others who did not have caffeine.
Related reading: Do Protein Coffee Shakes help with Fat Loss?
But despite the many benefits of caffeine on keto, health experts advise that caffeine should be taken in moderation. In fact, Dr. Atkins, the founder of the Atkins diet, which is a type of low-carb diet, has advised people to consume caffeine in moderation since it has the tendency to cause hypoglycemic reactions.
Also known as an insulin reaction, a hypoglycemic reaction occurs when your blood glucose level drops to a point where you find yourself feeling disoriented and confused. So, whether you’re on a keto diet or not, coffee should be taken in moderation.
Mycotoxins in Coffee
There have been reports of mycotoxins in coffee beans. Mycotoxins are toxins produced by molds which grow on coffee beans as well as other produce such as grains.
The main molds that grow on coffee beans are aflatoxin B1 and ochratoxin A which have varying adverse health effects on your body if they are not dealt with by your liver. Experts say that mycotoxins are not a big deal as levels are controlled in many countries.
Researchers have shown that mycotoxins are present in a high percentage of coffee beans which make it into your coffee drink but the levels are far below the safety limit.
This is all very well if you are not sensitive to mycotoxins. Some unfortunate people who have been living in water damaged houses that developed black mold have found that they develop health issues which are related to mycotoxin sensitivity. They end up having to avoid mycotoxins in food as much as possible while they are being treated.
If you don’t like the idea of mycotoxins floating around in your coffee, (and who would?), then there are companies who are producing mold free coffee. You can find out more about mold and mycotoxins in coffee and learn about a mycotoxin free brand of coffee in my article Is Mold in Coffee Bad for You?
So, is coffee keto? The answer will mainly depend on the type of coffee that you consume. Coffee on its own is safe for your keto diet. And as stated above, caffeine can benefit your keto diet in many ways. However, it’s important to ensure that your coffee does not contain sugar and other carbs that can kick you out of ketosis.
You can choose to drink black coffee or add butter, MCT oil, or low-carb sweeteners if you want to give it a bit of flavor. It’s also important to keep in mind that overconsumption of caffeine can have negative effects on your health.
Whether you are on the keto diet or not, make sure you drink coffee in moderation. If possible, limit your intake to two to three cups per day.