If you haven’t heard of the Keto diet, here’s a quick breakdown of what it is. The Keto diet is a popular diet for losing fat, gaining lean muscle mass, and boosting energy levels. It’s getting more and more popular and for good reason – it’s helped a lot of people lose weight, get healthier, and get more energy. It’s a diet that causes your body to burn fat (in the form of ketones) rather than sugar (in the form glucose/glycogen which we often get from carbs).
When you’re on a ketogenic diet, your body will go into a state of ketosis(1), which is the metabolic state that occurs when your body uses ketones as its primary energy. During ketosis, your body breaks down fat to use as energy instead of using carbohydrates. If you’re looking to burn fat, then ketosis can be a very good thing, since it’s forcing your body to burn fat as fuel.
While the keto diet has mainly become popular for weight loss, studies have also shown numerous other health benefits. For example, being on the keto diet helps reverse type 2 diabetes and reduce symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, depression, and autism(2)(3). In fact, the keto diet was first used in the 1920s, not as a weight loss diet, but a natural treatment to prevent seizures in epilepsy patients(4).
Now you may be wondering, is it safe for me to drink tea on a Keto diet? The short answer is: yes!
Teas are a great source of clean energy and are perfectly safe because they have virtually no carbs. Some types to explore are:
- Black teas: Great hot or iced and typically give you the most energizing caffeine. I would recommend either an English Breakfast or Earl Grey.
- Green teas: Provide caffeine, high levels of l-theanine, and a ton of antioxidants and many health benefits. I would recommend hydrating throughout the day with a Sencha or Jasmine. Bonus: Helps control hunger and unnecessary cravings!
- Herbal teas: There are a huge variety of herbal teas available in the market. While they are not considered “true teas” (true teas are from the plant Camellia Sinensis), they can have soothing effects and are warm to drink. Just be cautious of any teas containing dried fruit, as they may be higher in carbs. Having a Hibiscus Mint after a heavy meal is keto-friendly and also has digestive properties. You can also add whole leaf stevia or any natural sweetener of your choice for an extra treat.
If you want to mix up your Keto tea drinks, try creating a ‘Ketoproof’ recipe. A ‘Ketoproof’ drink is a great way to get a ton of energy while also helping with hunger pangs. ‘Ketoproof’ Tea is largely inspired by Bulletproof Coffee where it is high in fat content and helps you stay satiated for a while. Drinking a Ketoproof tea in the morning helps ramp up metabolism with the fats, amino acids, and caffeine.
Main Components for Ketoproof Tea
Coconut Oil or MCT Oil – Coconut oil technically is MCT (Medium Chain Triglyceride) oil, well about 65-80% MCT anyway. MCT oil is just more concentrated than coconut oil, but both have been shown to aid in fat loss.
Grass Fed Butter or Ghee – Cows that have a diet of fresh grass yields butter that has improved consistency and nutritional properties. Ghee is similar to clarified butter, which is produced by heating butter to remove the milk solids and water. Ghee is rich in beneficial nutrients and contains several fatty acids that are important to health. Plus, there are numerous benefits of ghee, and some of its components have been shown to do everything from boost weight loss to improve digestion and relieve inflammation.
Your Choice of Tea – With a myriad of health benefits that are covered below. I would recommend either a Green tea or Black tea not only for the energy from the caffeine, but also many proponents that help improve your overall health.
Polyphenols – These function as antioxidants in your body, reducing the formation of free radicals in the body and helps to protect your cells from damage. The most powerful antioxidant in green tea is Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which has shown to be effective against fatigue and is used medicinally for HIV and Cancer patients(5).
Improved Brain Function – Not only does tea contain caffeine, it also has an abundance of L-theanine, an amino acid. L-theanine increases your GABA activity, which improves anxiety, dopamine, and alpha waves(6). This leads to a much more stable energy than coffee. L-theanine also works in unison with caffeine generated from teas to ax out the jitters from caffeine, leaving you calm and relaxed.
Increased Metabolic Rate – Green tea has been shown to improve your metabolic rate. A randomized clinical trial included 63 patients with type 2 diabetes (30 males and 33 females). After a two-week run-in period without green tea, they were randomly assigned into one of the three groups, with a different daily intake of green tea; four cups of green tea per day, two cups of green tea per day, and another group with no green tea intake for two months. The conclusion was that drinking four cups of green tea led to a significant reduction in weight and systolic blood pressure(7).
Build Immunity – While on any diet, it’s important to build immunity and stay healthy. Green tea catechins could also act as immune modulators in immune dysfunction caused by transplanted tumors or by carcinogen treatment(8).
Good luck and happy Keto-ing!