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Nutrition » Diets » Keto » Is Half And Half Keto Approved? Carbs And Alternatives

Is Half And Half Keto Approved? Carbs And Alternatives

Is Half And Half Keto? The Truth About Its Carb Content And Its Taste Buds Rocking Substitutes

Rapid weight gain is a contributing factor to the world’s growing health crising. Diabetes, apnea, heart disease, cancer – none of these diseases are off the table if you’re suffering from obesity. This terrifying fact is what bulldozes many people into action. May are making adjustments in their lifestyle, fix their eating habits and start working out on a regular basis to burn body fat and tone their muscles faster.

However, exercising is just 50% of your results. If you want to achieve desirable effect, it is important to make smart eating choices and turn healthy diet into an integral part of your life. There are tons of dietary plans, which can help to get rid of excess weight and improve your health. You might have heard about the paleo diet, the warrior diet, the cucumber diet and more. The keto diet belongs to the most popular ones and has numerous restrictions you have to comply with in order kick your fat-burning system in overdrive.It also limits your dairy consumption. Today you will find out whether half and half can be a part of your keto diet. Let’s dive right in.

Short information about the keto diet

You probably already know that the keto diet is a high-fat dietary plan which limits your carbohydrate intake (3). The premise is that you get your daily calorie intake mostly from proteins and fats and avoid the majority of carbs, which are easy to digest (for example, sugary foods, soda, white bread and more).

On the keto diet, you can eat seafood, low-carb and non-starchy veggies, meat, eggs, healthy foods, high-fat dairy (except for milk), nuts and seeds, berries and more. You can also drink water, bone broth, tea and coffee (all the drinks should be unsweetened). Your aim is to consume only 50 grams of carbs per day (8).

As you can see, your carb intake is quite low. That’s why it is important to choose what foods to leave in you daily meal plan and what foods to exclude. Yes, you can drink coffee, but the majority of the coffee lovers have a question – is half and half appropriate for the keto dieters?

is half and half ok on keto diet

What is half and half?

Many people don’t understand the difference between cream, milk and half and half. There is no need to explain what milk is, but cream and half and half are two different milk products. To put it simply, cream is the fat, naturally found in milk. If you have ever bought milk from a local framer, you might have seen a line of cream at the top of the bottle. Half and half means half cream and half milk. It contains a number of nutrients, such as vitamins A, B2, B5, B12, selenium, phosphorus and calcium which are essential for your overall health. The difference is slight, but still significant.

Why is half and half not allowed on a keto diet?

The question is whether half and half can be a part of your keto diet, as it belongs to high-fat dairy products, but contains milk. Cutting to the chase, half and half isn’t keto and cannot be included to your daily meal plan. If you add it to your coffee, it’s obvious that you’ll also consume milk and it’s packed with carbs and sugars. Simply stated, you’ll reduce your fat intake in favor of sugar and fats. This is contrary to the basic principles of the keto diet. However, half and half have 0.6 grams of carbs per 1 tablespoon. That’s why many dieters still add 1-2 tablespoons of this product to their coffee.

How can I replace half and half?

There is a plethora of  ways how you can replace half and half and keep your carb intake within the recommended range. Here is the list of alternatives that will make your beverage creamy and delicious without derailing your keto diet progress or kicking you out of ketosis:

  • Butter

Butter belongs to healthy sources of fat. However, keep in mind that it is approximately 80% of fat, so it is high in calories (approximately 100 calories per 1 tablespoon). That’s why you should be careful and consume butter in moderate amounts. It also has numerous health benefits. For instance, butter contains beta-carotene, which is essential for the healthy vision. Calcium supports the health of your bones. Butter is also rich in vitamin A, which is crucial for the individuals with thyroid disorders. Moreover, this food supports the health of your heart, as it contains omega-3 fatty acids. (2)

why is half and half not keto

  • Ghee

Ghee is clarified butter. It is almost 100% of fat and belongs to fats which are easily converted into energy by your body. By consuming it you can reach ketosis faster. Ghee also has a number of benefits. For example, it contains heart-healthy fats, vitamins A, D, E, and K, which are essential for the proper functioning of your body. It doesn’t contain sugar, so it is a perfect half and half alternative.

You can also prepare your own homemade ghee. You need a pack of butter (or more, if you wish), a pot, a bowl, a steel mesh strainer, a spoon and a glass jar to store your ghee.

It is better to take grass-fed butter, as it is more nutrient-dense. Cut butter into pieces and place them in a pot on a medium low temperature. The preparation will take approximately 20-30 minutes.

When you see the white particles on the surface of melted butter, you should start taking them off. That’s the proteins rising to the top. You can mix it into mashed potatoes or rice later.

When you see small bubbles, lower the heat in order not to burn your ghee. Cook until you see brown bits on the bottom of the pot. Then you should strain the melted butter into a glass jar. You’ll get a golden substance, which should be stored in a fridge.

This is a perfect addition to your coffee. Moreover, you can also use it to cook your dishes and make their taste even more delicious.

  • Coconut milk

Coconut milk has gained popularity as a dairy alternative. However, is not a perfect alternative for half and half, since it still has 0.5 grams of carbs per serving, but many dieters add it to their coffee. It is a rich source of healthy fats. Coconut milk helps to get rid of excess pounds and can support the proper functioning of your immune system (1). However, it will significantly change the taste of your coffee.

is half and half creamer keto friendly

  • Almond milk

Some people use almond milk to replace half and half in their coffee. In addition to its taste, it also has numerous health benefits. Many brands enrich almond milk with protein, calcium, minerals or vitamins (4). However, this product contains carbs as well, that’s why it is not the best alternative.

  • Heavy whipping cream

Heavy whipping cream will be a nice half and half alternative for those who prefer to drink sweetened coffee. Many keto dieters replace half and half with heavy whipping cream, assuming it has zero carbs.

However, the trick is that the food manufacturers in the US can call their product zero carbs, if it contains less than 0.5 grams of carbs per serving. Heavy whipping cream has 0.4 grams of carbs per serving. Although this amount isn’t critical for most people, it can kick the keto dieters out of ketosis. That’s why the heavy whipping cream is probably the last alternative for half and half.

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Conclusion

In conclusion, when you make a decision to lose weight, every detail is important. Even such a habit as adding half and half into your morning coffee can influence your results. That’s why you should carefully choose what to add to your dishes and beverages.

However, it is important to remember that your number one priority is your health. The keto diet and it rules can help you shed excess weight, but it lacks evidence and research concerning its impact on your health in general. Remember, that there is no magic weight loss button which will help you to slim down overnight. 

Weight loss is a long term process which demands your time and effort. Regular physical activity and perfectly balanced meal plan are the major key to a strong and most importantly healthy body. It is also critical to reduce stress levels, as it is extremely harmful for your health and can cause a number of health conditions (6) as well as excess weight gain (5). Your daily water intake has a significant impact on your health and weight loss process as well. Its amount varies depending on the climate you live in, how active you are and many other factors (7).

As you can see, there is an abundance of details, which should be taken into account before starting you weight loss journey. That’s why it is critical to consult your nutritionist before following any new diet.

If you are interested in healthy meal plans, you may be curious about other methods of supporting your body health. Supplement a proper meal plan with some exercise and take up this 20 Min Full Body Workout at Home.

DISCLAIMER:

This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!

SOURCES:

  1.   Health benefits of coconut milk (2018, medicalnewstoday.com)
  2.   Is Butter Good for You? (2019, news-medical.net)
  3.   Ketogenic diet: Is the ultimate low-carb diet good for you? (2017, health.harvard.edu)
  4.   Seven benefits of almond milk (2020, medicalnewstoday.com)
  5.   Surprising Reasons You’re Gaining Weight (2018, webmd.com)
  6.   The effects of chronic stress on health: new insights into the molecular mechanisms of brain–body communication (2015, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
  7.   Water: How much should you drink every day? (2017, mayoclinic.org)
  8.   What’s a Ketogenic Diet? (2019, webmd.com)
Kristen Fleming

Kristen Fleming

I am a U.S. educated and trained Registered Dietitian (MS, RD, CNSC) with clinical and international development experience. I have experience conducting systematic reviews and evaluating the scientific literature both as a graduate student and later to inform my own evidence-based practice as an RD. I am currently based in Lusaka, Zambia after my Peace Corps service was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic and looking for some meaningful work to do as I figure out next steps. This would be my first freelance project, but I am a diligent worker and quite used to independent and self-motivated work.

Kristen Fleming, MS, RD, CNSC

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