The keto diet is a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet that is proven to be effective for weight loss. Doctors, athletes, and lifestyle enthusiasts have used keto diets for years to achieve better health.
Now is the best time to start keto because many keto friendly products are readily available everywhere. But what about your favorite cereal?
Is buckwheat keto friendly? The short answer is no but keep reading to find out alternatives to buckwheat and how to plan your keto diet to make sure you lose weight the healthy way!
Buckwheat is not actually wheat at all but a gluten-free grain that is closely related to rhubarb and sorrel. It's a variety of sorrel with a seed instead of a root and has a bitter, nutty taste.
There are two varieties of buckwheat: white and brown. White buckwheat is also known as kasha and has a milder flavor and better texture than brown buckwheat. It can be eaten as porridge or added to soup or stews.
It can also be ground into flour or used as a substitute for rice in stir-fried dishes. Brown buckwheat has a nuttier flavor and a more bitter aftertaste and is usually used to make noodles or steamed puddings.
Buckwheat is a type of grain that falls under the category of “pseudocereals.” Pseudocereals are plant-based foods with edible seeds, like quinoa, buckwheat, and amaranth.
These pseudo-cereals are technically in the grass family, although you would never know by looking at them because they have a grain-like appearance.
Because they are not actual grains, they are not included in the list of restricted carbohydrates on the ketogenic diet. But is buckwheat keto? Even though they are not grains, they are still high in carbs and not recommended on keto.
How is Buckwheat made?
Buckwheat is made from the seed of a plant called Fagopyrum esculentum, which is grown primarily in Russia, Japan, China, and Ukraine.
The first step in making buckwheat is to sow the seeds in spring or early summer after the soil has warmed up. Once the seedlings appear, they need to be transplanted into fertile soil and raised under warm, sunny conditions until they are ready for harvest.
Then they are carefully collected by hand and dried in the sun before being stored for later use. The whole production process takes a few months, after which the buckwheat is ready to cook.
Before we answer, is buckwheat keto friendly, let's understand its nutritional profile.
According to the USDA, one serving (100 grams) of raw buckwheat contains about 71.5 grams of carbs and 13.3 grams of protein.
This makes buckwheat a healthy alternative to wheat for people who are sensitive to gluten but don't want to give up bread and other baked goods entirely.
It contains decent amounts of fiber and fewer amounts of vitamins and minerals, including magnesium, copper, selenium, manganese, and iron.
Eating buckwheat on keto will not only kick you out of ketosis but will also make your body deficient in essential vitamins and minerals.
Buckwheat is not a keto friendly food. While buckwheat does have a lower glycemic index than other common carbohydrates, it still contains carbs that can spike blood sugar levels, leading to potential health risks if consumed in large amounts on a regular basis.
It's also important to note that a serving of buckwheat contains significantly more carbs than the same amount of steel-cut oats, which have a much lower GI but are still not considered keto friendly.
Buckwheat is also a very starchy vegetable and contains very little protein or healthy fats. Although buckwheat can be part of a healthy and balanced diet, it can also be harmful to those with autoimmune conditions.
These conditions can cause harmful spikes in blood sugar when excess carbs are consumed, which can result in widespread inflammation throughout the body.
In addition, the grain-like texture of buckwheat can make them difficult for some people to digest properly, which can lead to discomfort, bloating, and gas.
The calorie content of buckwheat varies widely based on the specific variety used and how it's prepared. In general, one cup of cooked buckwheat contains approximately 343 calories.
This does not include any additional toppings that may be added, so the total calorie count of a buckwheat dish can vary significantly depending on the recipe used.
Unlike whole buckwheat kernels, buckwheat flour is made from ground-up buckwheat groats and has a significantly lower amount of carbs per serving.
It is used to make some delicious and healthy recipes, such as buckwheat pancakes and muffins.
Unfortunately, most commercial brands of buckwheat flour contain added sugar and other additives, which negate most of the health benefits of this flour and make it less keto friendly.
It is important to choose a brand that is made with organic ingredients and does not contain any added sugars.
It is diabetic-friendly but high in carbs. One serving of buckwheat flour contains approximately 84.7 grams of carbs, compared to only 23 grams of net carbs for the same amount of almond flour.
While the carb content is certainly lower than other grains, such as barley and oats, it is still too high for a keto dieter.
Even the lowest-carb type of buckwheat still has more net carbs than a serving of carrots does.
It also has relatively less protein content, which makes it a poor source of the amino acids that our body needs to synthesize proteins from dietary sources.
If you're on a ketogenic diet, you may want to avoid buckwheat pasta. This type of pasta is high in carbs, which can make it difficult to stick to your daily carb limit.
It is lower in protein and does not contain any healthy fat, which is essential for keto.
However, there are some low-carb pasta varieties that have fewer carbs and are more keto friendly. These include orzo and spaghetti squash fettuccine.
Keto Friendly Buckwheat Alternatives
While buckwheat is not keto friendly, you can find many alternatives to it.
1. Oat flour: This is a great keto friendly alternative to buckwheat flour because oats are low in carbs and high in fiber. Many people prefer oat flour over wheat flour because it doesn't cause digestion issues, and they consider it healthier. You can substitute it for 50% of the buckwheat flour in any recipe.
2. Almond flour: Another common substitute for buckwheat flour is almond flour. It can be found in the health section of your local grocery store. It can also be made at home by grinding almonds in a food processor or coffee grinder. This can be used in baking and cooking recipes as well. It is low in carbs and high in fiber and protein.
3. Coconut flour: This is another great alternative to buckwheat flour because it's low in carbs and contains a good amount of fiber. It also contains little sugar and won't spike your blood sugar level. It has a very coconutty taste and can be used to make anything, including cookies and pasta.
Keto friendly alternative to buckwheat pasta
Spaghetti squash is naturally low-carb and gluten-free and is a great substitute for traditional pasta. It has a mild flavor that resembles cooked spaghetti noodles.
It's also low in calories and has a naturally satisfying, fluffy texture. You can easily cook whole spaghetti squash in the microwave and use it throughout the week for a healthy low-carb meal!
Simply cut the squash in half lengthwise and microwave on high for about 8-10 minutes until the squash is soft to the touch. Then, use a fork to scrape the cooked flesh away from the skin and remove all of the seeds before chowing down!
Spiralized zucchini is the next best alternative, but it can be a little messy and time-consuming to prep and cook, especially if you don't have a spiralizer tool.
Plus, it can be hard to find in stores and pretty expensive online. But don't worry – the good news is that there are tons of other options out there! Nut-based noodles are another popular alternative to traditional pasta that can be enjoyed by everyone!
You can make them using ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen! All you need are some nuts, spices, and a bit of cheese! (Easy peasy!).
These noodles can be used to make healthy low-carb meals such as curries and stir-fries! Or you can use them as a base for paleo pizza or soups!
Keto friendly cereals
As keto is becoming more popular, more keto friendly foods are being introduced to the market today. While you can find keto friendly flour and pasta, you can also easily find keto friendly cereals.
Cereals are grain-based foods that have been flaked or crushed up and have added sugar and flavorings. Many people do not eat cereal on a keto diet because it contains a lot of carbs and usually includes a large amount of sugar as well.
However, there are some keto friendly cereals that you can consume while still remaining in ketosis. Let's take a look at some of the best keto friendly cereals that you can find on the market today.
• Magic Spoon cereals – This cereal comes in a lot of flavors, including peanut butter, cocoa, cinnamon, fruity, and cookies & cream. It also has limited edition flavors that are a must-try. It has a sweet taste but is low in carbs and sugar. It contains about 4-5 grams of net carbs per serving.
• Perfect Keto Mallow Munch – This cereal bar has a crunchy taste and is made with delicious ingredients like milk protein, vitamin E, and almond butter. It is high in fiber and contains only 2 grams of net carbs per serving.
• Purely Elizabeth – This cereal is made from pumpkin seeds and cashews. It has a sweet and crunchy taste. These grain-free granules are high in fiber and contain only 7 grams of net carbs per serving.
• Perfect Keto Nola Bars – This cereal is made from MCT oil, dark chocolate, and nuts that give it a hearty crunch. It contains 2 grams of total carbs per serving and is a great source of fats, protein, and fiber.
Other keto friendly cereals that you can try include Kashi Go Lean Crunch and Just Right Cereal from Whole Foods.
You can also make your own keto friendly cereal by making your own granola using nuts, seeds, dried fruit, and low-carb sweeteners like stevia.
Making your own granola can be a good way to experiment with different flavors and find a recipe that you like.
Many foods are naturally low in carbs and can be consumed as part of a low-carb diet. However, it can sometimes be difficult to find keto friendly snacks when you are on the go. But is buckwheat keto friendly?
Unfortunately, no, but you can find many alternate foods to buckwheat that are equally delicious. Although buckwheat is healthy, gluten-free, full of healthy nutrients, and diabetic-friendly, it is high in carbs.
If you love buckwheat flour, you can try using almond or coconut flour instead to reduce your carb intake. You can try eating other low-carb pasta like zucchini noodles or spaghetti squash instead of buckwheat pasta.
If buckwheat was your go-to cereal, you can always find alternatives out there that are just as delicious for you to eat.