Foods to avoid

Foods to avoid on a ketogenic diet

It's important to get into the habit of reading nutrition labels — not just the nutrition panel, but also the ingredients list. Foods that may appear healthy often contain unhealthy ingredients such as high-fructose corn syrup, MSG, artificial sweeteners, or hidden forms of sugar.

When possible, avoid foods with these ingredients:

Hidden forms of sugar and carbohydrates

  • Brown sugar
  • Dextrose
  • Maltose
  • Sucrose
  • Fructose
  • Maltodextrin
  • Rice starch
  • Corn starch
  • High-fructose corn syrup
  • Corn syrup solids
  • Cane juice
  • Cane syrup
  • Fruit juice concentrate
  • Molasses
  • Wheat gluten

Artificial sweeteners

  • Equal
  • Splenda
  • Aspartame
  • Sucralose
  • Acesulfame

Other additive and preservatives

  • Natural flavors
  • MSG (monosodium glutamate)
  • Partially hydrogenated oils (trans fats)
  • Refined oils such as canola oil, soybean oil, corn oil, grapeseed oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil
  • Autolyzed yeast
  • Autolyzed vegetable protein
  • Hydrolyzed vegetable protein
  • Butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA)
  • Butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT)
  • Propyl gallate
  • Sodium benzoate
  • Benzoic acid
  • Sodium nitrate
  • Sodium nitrite
  • Potassium bromate

If you can’t identify something or can’t pronounce it, you can’t generally assume that you shouldn’t eat it!

Ready to get started on keto?

Download my free keto start guide to learn what to buy, what to expect during your first month, and what to eat as you start your ketogenic diet!

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