By Sarah Peterson of Perfect Keto
Nut butter is often hailed as a keto secret weapon, a superfood that helps you get protein and healthy fats in abundance. Well, not all nut butters were created equal, so in this article I want to talk about how to choose a healthy nut butter (spoiler alert: it isn’t peanut butter). This is a shorter version of a longer article about nut butters that is available here.
It’s All About The Fiber…
To begin, we need a quick fire lesson on fiber and its role in making nuts so healthy. A keto friendly nut is one that is going to give lots of protein and healthy fats without being carb heavy. Now, when you look at the stats for nuts, you may be surprised at just how high the carb content is. However, you need to look out for the ‘net carbs’ - this is the total carbs minus the amount of dietary fiber.
Essentially, the total carbs in a nut include the carbohydrates that are locked away in indigestible dietary fiber. Your body cannot break down fiber to use in the same way it does carbs, so these do not actually count towards the amount of carbs you get from a nut.
On top of this, dietary fiber has lots of important health benefits of its own, including aiding in digestion and heart health.
What does all of this mean? Well, basically dietary fiber is the key to choosing a keto friendly nut. The more fiber in a type of nut, the lower amount of net carbs. So, with this lesson in dietary fiber under our belts, we can move onto the healthiest nut butters!
Top 3 Healthy Nut Butters
#1 - Macadamia Butter
Macadamia nuts are sometimes referred to as the king of keto nuts. They have the combination of low net carbs with the highest amount of fats - perfect for the keto diet! In fact, they are over 75% fat, making them a low carb wonder. Even better, all that fat means when they are crushed up to make nut butter, what you get is a rich, creamy and delicious spread!
A word of warning though, if you go out searching for macadamia nut butter online you may find that your only options are very expensive. This means that you are much better off making your own at home by combining macadamia nuts with another, cheaper keto-friendly nut.
#2 - Pecan Butter
Pecans are another super keto friendly nut. In fact, their macronutrient content is not so different to that of macadamia nuts. This means they are high in healthy fats, high in protein and super low in net carbs. This makes them another excellent choice for making nut butters.
Also, you will find that pecans and pecan butters are available for less money than macadamia butter - so they are a good way to go if you do not want to spring for macadamias. In fact, an ideal and delicious option is a mixture of the two!
#3 - Walnut Butter
The final keto friendly nut butter? Walnut butter. Like the other nuts on this list, walnuts are really high in healthy fats and really low in net carbs. This makes them another great keto friendly nut. Also, they have a very distinctive taste, which makes cooking with walnut butter a great option if you are looking to make something a little different.
On top of the great macronutrients, walnuts also are the only nut to contain omega-3 fatty acids, which have a host of health benefits like fighting inflammation and lowering cholesterol.
A Final Note on Nut Allergies
I just wanted to finish by mentioning a possible option for those who suffer from nut allergies and therefore cannot enjoy the benefits of the nut butters I have covered here.
Another great choice of high fat, protein-rich butter is to use seed butter. This is made the same way as nut butter, but using seeds instead so is safe for those with nut allergies. Also, it tastes great so even if you aren’t allergic to nuts, seed butter is a nice way to mix things up.
So there you have it, a selection of nut butters to help you hit your low carb goals. What’s great about nut butter is that t is incredibly versatile - you can cook with it, make delicious desserts, drop it into your bulletproof coffee or just spread it. So, make sure to build nut butter into your low carb diet, it really is a keto secret weapon.
To learn more about nut butters, visit Perfect Keto!
About the Author:
Sarah is a Content Director on Perfect Keto. Perfect Keto’s mission is to make the world a better place by helping people own optimal health, using the ketogenic diet as an entry point.