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Milk, yes or no, in the ketogenic diet

Milk, yes or no, in the ketogenic diet

Is milk allowed on the keto diet? What about dairy products on the keto diet? What should you avoid?

Cow's milk is not keto because it is a source of carbohydrates from its natural sugars. The sugar naturally present in all milk is difficult for some people to digest, which is another reason why many dieters may want to avoid this breakfast staple.

Can I choose lactose-free milk?

Lactose-free milk has the same amount of carbohydrates as regular milk because it is regular milk, except that the enzyme lactase is added. Lactase helps break down lactose into smaller sugar molecules, and people with lactose intolerance do not secrete enough lactase enzyme to digest lactose comfortably. Therefore, the sugar is still there, it is just easier to digest.


There are different types of milk, whole milk, skim milk and different amounts of low-fat milk. Different types of milk vary in fat content with slight variation in carbohydrate and protein. If the fat in milk is reduced, the carbohydrates in milk increase.

Less fat = more carbohydrates
Carbohydrate content per 240 ml of milk (one glass):

  • whole milk = 12 g carbohydrate, 8 g fat, 8 g protein
  • Skim milk = 13 g carbohydrate, 0 g fat, 8 g protein
Some good substitutes for cow's milk
There are some milk substitutes suitable for the keto diet:
  • Almond milk.
  • Soy milk.
  • Coconut milk.


Almond milk

With its creamy texture, subtle nutty flavor, and exceptionally low carbohydrate content, almond milk is one of the most popular milk substitutes not only on the keto diet, but also on other diets.

One cup of unsweetened almond milk has only 30 calories, 1 gram of net carbohydrates and 3 grams of fat. It is also a natural source of vitamins A and E, but many brands add calcium and vitamin D to their products to bring the nutritional profile closer to milk. Advantages:

  • Improves heart health
  • Almond milk lowers bad cholesterol and raises good cholesterol. This is due to the monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids it contains.
  • Helps build strong bones
  • Almond milk contains significant amounts of vitamin D and healthy fats that improve bone health and prevent osteoporosis.
  • Fights free radicals
  • The antioxidants in almond milk (especially the vitamins) fight free radicals and oxidative stress that can be caused by chemicals in food and other things.

Soy milk
Soy milk contains 3 grams of net carbohydrates per cup (240ml) and is quite low in protein content. However, attention must be paid to a number of important aspects. Obviously the provenance. Ideally, only certified organic products should be consumed. Also remember that most products you find in the supermarket are sweetened, so always watch the label.

Coconut milk

This drink is an excellent choice in the ketogenic diet; it is low in protein, but care must be taken as some brands contain up to 5 g net carbohydrate per cup (240 ml). Coconut milk is higher in fat, but these are "good" fats. In it we find omega-3s, which are excellent and very important in Keto, and lauric acid, a medium-chain saturated fatty acid that is often sold in dietary supplement form under the name MCT oil.

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