This is another in our continuing series of Ketogenic FAQ’s
This is such a great question because it shows an important difference between a ketogenic diet and other diets, most notably a vegan diet. As long as you are eating a well formulated ketogenic with lots of fatty meats and perhaps the occasional piece of offal like liver, you will be golden. I know there is always recommendations for leafy greens and fats like butter and I have absolutely no issue with that but the growing zero carb community is showing us how little we need in our diet besides meat. It would appear we can thrive on just meat but by all means, don’t neglect your leafy greens if you don’t want to.
How to Test for Nutrient Deficiencies
However, there are some situations where you might need to supplement with a few things for other reasons. The first thing you should do is to test to see if you are deficient in anything. I have compiled a list of blood tests you might want to take here to see if you are low on anything.
The next thing I would HIGHLY recommend is you purchase a copy of Chris Masterjohn’s unbelievable resource that shows what each nutrient does, what happens if you are low and how to fix the issue. I cannot stress enough the level of detail that is in this thing. It is beyond a shadow of a doubt the most helpful thing I’ve ever seen when it comes to nutrition and is the first place I turn to whenever I have a question.
There are a few areas where most people are deficient because the quality of food most of us eat just isn’t up to par and if you don’t want to get anything tested, this would be where I would go first.
Magnesium – Magnesium is the most common nutrient deficiency we have. If you are switching from a Standard American Diet, the chances that you are Mg deficient are very very high. You can eat lots of grass fed liver to raise those levels or you can supplement. I recommend you supplement with Pure Vitamin Club’s Magnesium. I have used them for about a year now and they work better than any other supplement I have ever taken.
Vitamin D – This is another common deficiency because most of us spend way to much time indoors and not enough out in the sun. The best remedy for this is to go outside more and expose as much of your skin to the sun as you can for about 15-20 minutes a day. If you can’t do that, Pure Vitamin Club also makes a Vitamin D pill that is packaged with olive oil instead of the polyunsaturated safflower oil most vitamin D pills come with. (Vitamin D is fat-soluble so it must be taken with a fat)
Beyond those big 2, most nutrients should come naturally with a whole foods diet. However, it is still a good idea to get tested from time to time just to be sure nothing is getting out of whack.
There are also some other ways to monitor your progress while on keto. For example, there are strips that check your urine available which measure your body’s ketone levels.