I feel nostalgic when I talk about plantains. Along with my family, I used to go to my aunt’s house during summer vacation from school. I have so many memories to cherish in my aunt’s house.
Plantains are a type of banana. My aunt used to make the yummiest fried ripe plantains, and I still remember the taste. Here a question arises, Are plantains fruit or vegetable?
But do you eat plantains like fruit? I doubt you may not. Plantains, even the ripe ones, are less sweet than bananas.
Most people eat plantains as vegetables. Some also cook savory dishes with these.
People who are on a keto diet often get confused about eating plantains. Are plantains keto friendly? Read till the end to know elaborately.
Nutritional Values Of Plantains
The Keto diet helps lose weight. Also, it is beneficial to cure many health hazards.
For instance, they reduce the cholesterol level in the body, cure cardiovascular disease, improve fertility, etc. Significantly type 2 diabetes patients can benefit from the keto diet.
However, Not everyone can follow this diet. People should choose diet plans based on daily activities, weight, and health conditions.
Those who maintain a keto diet should have the exact idea of the nutritional values of what they are eating. Otherwise, it will negatively impact the body rather than help out. So, the nutritional values of plantains are:
Rich In Carb
A person on a keto or ketogenic diet has to limit carb intake. But that does not mean you have to eliminate all the carbs from your daily meal. Keto is not about having zero carbs.
People who are fitness freaks or exercise regularly can consume more carbs. But in general, you must cut down on high-carb foods while on keto.
Nutritionists advise not to intake more than 50 grams of carbs per day on a keto diet. It would be better to eat less than 50 grams.
Now let’s calculate the number of carbs in plantains. Plantains are high in carbs. 100 grams of plantains contain 31 grams of total carbs.
Low In Fat
The ketogenic diet or keto diet has a principle. It is to replace carbohydrates with fats. But why is that?
The answer is simple. Your body needs fuel to work all day long. Here power is equal to energy.
What ingredient will provide the energy? We once used to believe that carbs were the only ingredient to supply this fuel or energy to our body. But the keto diet proved us wrong.
Fat can also be an alternative to carbs for supplying energy to the body. The keto diet also helps to reduce weight. There is also the fact that the keto diet always encourages the intake of healthy and right fats.
Are plantains keto friendly? I want to answer that low-fat food usually can not be keto friendly.
Plantains contain significantly less fat. 100 grams of plantains has only 0.2 grams of fat.
Not A Good Source Of Protein
The benefits of protein are not unknown to us at all. Weight control becomes more accessible with a sufficient amount of protein. Other than that, protein helps to repair muscle and growth.
There is a misconception that the ketogenic diet is all about high protein. Instead, the keto diet limits protein intake, unlike most other diets.
How much protein should be eaten on a keto diet? It depends on the person’s weight, activities, etc. But in general, 20-30% can be enough.
Plantains can be included in a healthy diet. But not essential for weight loss as it is a poor source of protein.
If we go through the nutritional values, 100 grams of plantains contain only 0.8 grams of protein. The insufficiency of the protein shows it is not keto friendly.
Great Source Of Potassium
Potassium is excellent for reducing high blood pressure. We know high quantities of sodium are harmful to blood pressure. You will lose sodium with urine if you eat sufficient potassium.
Potassium also reduces the risk of kidney stones. Doctors often suggest intaking foods containing potassium to kidney patients.
It also helps to prevent stroke. The more you eat potassium, the fewer chances for a stroke.
Another fantastic fact is that plantains have more potassium than bananas. 100 grams of plantains contain 465 mg of potassium.
Other Vitamins And Minerals
Besides carbs, protein, and fat, plantains contain other vitamins and minerals. Per cup of plantains includes a good amount of vitamin C. 100 grams of plantains has 3 mg of calcium, 0.6 mg of iron, 56 mcg of vitamin A and 18.4 mg of vitamin C.
Are Plantains Fit For Keto?
From the above nutritional discussion, we can see that plantains are high in total carbohydrates and extremely low in fat and protein. Besides carbohydrates, 100 grams of plantains contain only 2.3 grams of dietary fiber. And the net carbs in 100 grams of plantains are 28.7 grams. So, Plantains are not keto-friendly even a small serving size kicks you out of ketosis.
Plantains In Weight Loss
Previously I have said that plantains are fruits, but we eat them like vegetables. You may have seen them cooking plantains and serving them as a side dish. Or maybe you also do that.
Are plantains healthy? Yes, plantains are healthy. But if plantains are cooked with oil, high sugar, high salt, fat, and other spices, they do not remain healthy anymore.
Plantain chips are a typical dish and taste so good. It is popular street food in many countries.
Plantains are rich in fiber. It will keep you fuller for a long time. Also, it is suitable for digestion.
It gives you the essential supplements needed for the growth of your body. But I fear it may not be digestive for everyone.
I know a question just came to your mind. Will plantains help me with weight loss? Even though plantains do not contain much fat, we should not forget that they are high in carbs.
Plantains can not be eaten like bananas. So if you eat fried plantains or cook them with other things, it will not be much helpful in your weight loss journey.
Eating Types Of Plantains
How many of you are a fan of fried plantains? Well, I am a big fan of it. Another name for fried plantains is ‘Tostones.’
It is a popular dish in some Caribbean countries, Central America, and a few countries in Africa.
One cup serving of fried plantains contains 399 total calories. Fried plantains are high in fat that may include in the keto diet.
But it is higher in carbs too. So we can not call fried plantains keto friendly.
Plantains are not as sweet as bananas. Riper ones taste more sweet and delicious than raw plantains.
Many people prefer sweet or ripe plantains over green ones. But sadly, sweet plantains also are not keto friendly.
Plantains are supposed to be the most versatile. They taste different at every stage. Yellow plantains are different from green ones because they are more ripened.
But if you want your yellow plantains to be edible, you still have to cook. Yellow plantains contain more sugar than green ones.
Are yellow plantains keto friendly? The answer will be ‘no.’
What is the most ripened version of plantains? That is Black plantains. An interesting fact is that black plantains are only edible versions of plantains.
You can eat black plantains without cooking. But I have seen people making fried black plantains.
Black plantains also contain high carbohydrates and the sweetest ones. They are not keto friendly like other versions of plantains.
Most people get confused about green plantains. If you eat raw green plantains, you will get a similar taste to raw potato.
Will you eat a raw potato? Does raw potato seem appetizing to you? At least I prefer cooked potatoes, not raw ones.
Now there is also a problem with the cooked green plantains. When you cook green plantains, no resistant starch remains anymore.
Resistant starch is something that helps you to digest well. It is also beneficial for weight loss. If you eat 15-30 grams of resistant starch regularly, you will be able to avail yourself of its benefits.
Various mouth-watering savory dishes can be cooked with green plantains. However, green plantains are not keto friendly.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What can I eat with fried plantains?
Well, fried plantains are fantastic to have as a snack. It tastes pretty similar to potato chips or french fries.
But if you want to have it as a meal, you can serve it with an omelet. Pork and fried plantains can also be a great combination together.
I also have an idea to make it more attractive for your guests. Make the classic dish ‘Puerto rican chicken or Arroz con Pollo’ and serve it with fried plantains. Trust me; you will get a lot of appreciation from your guests.
You can serve tostones or fried plantains with beans as well. I tried them with tomato soup once and loved the outcome.
2. Can my dog eat plantains?
Of course, your dog can eat plantains. There is nothing harmful or toxic in plantains for your dog. Even there are few benefits of giving them to dogs.
Plantains contain a lot of fiber and natural sugar that are good for dogs’ health. But there is a warning. If your dog has a high blood sugar problem, avoid giving plantains.
Do not give plantain peel to your dog as it may cause digestion problems. Otherwise, you can cook plantains and serve your dog in a mashed form.
3. Do plantains cause weight gain?
Plantains are healthy if you can intake the raw version. You can also make soup or add in a stew. It will not be a reason for weight gain then.
But plantains seem tasteless to have raw. So, what we do is we cook them adding a lot of oil, sugar, etc. This may cause weight gain.
4. Can plantains be eaten during pregnancy?
Yes, it can be. It will not be detrimental to the mother’s body or the baby. It is good to have plantains during pregnancy.
Pregnant women often suffer from nausea, and plantains can be an excellent remedy. Moreover, plantains are high in folate, iron, and vitamin A.
Plantains contain vital nutrients for a healthy pregnancy. But of course, pregnant women should not eat excessive amounts of it.
5. Can I have allergic issues eating plantains?
First, you need to know whether you are allergic to bananas or not. Bananas and plantains both contain a similar kind of protein. The sort of protein is Latex protein.
But it may vary from person to person. Some people have allergies to bananas but not plantains.
6. Are plantains vegan?
Yes, plantains are vegan. We know plantains are a fruit, and we eat them like vegetables. So, plantains are plant-based.
7. Can athletes eat plantains on a keto diet?
Foods on a keto diet are not the same for everyone. It depends on the person’s daily workouts, height, weight, etc.
Plantains are starchy food and contain a lot of calories. It would be best not to intake plantains on a keto diet for a person who is not in heavy workouts.
But athletes burn more calories than generals. So, athletes can have plantains on a keto diet, especially during their carb-loading phase.
8. Can I eat fried plantains on a cheat meal of keto?
Well, like other diet plans, keto also allows cheating meals sometimes. Having a cheat meal on your peaceful weekend will not harm you that much.
But you have to remember not to take carbs that exceed your limitation. Otherwise, the keto diet will kick you out, and you will need to start again from the beginning.
I mean that you can eat fried plantains on your calorie limits. One hundred grams of fried plantains contain 236 calories.
Plantains are a part of the banana family. But there are many differences between bananas and plantains.
The first difference is the size. Plantains are usually larger than bananas. Also, their skin is thicker.
Plantains taste different from bananas. However, if we talk about which one is allowed on the keto diet, then the straight answer will be that both are prohibited on keto or ketogenic diets.
The calories of plantains are even more than bananas. If we calculate, 100 grams of bananas contain 89 calories. In contrast, 100 grams of plantains contain 116 calories.
Are plantains keto friendly? No, plantains are healthy, but you can not claim them to be keto friendly.
You can make several healthy and gluten-free recipes with plantains. But it will be better to skip plantains if you are maintaining a keto diet.