As a person who lost 40 pounds following the keto diet, I regularly get numerous questions from people around me regarding the keto diet. The ketogenic diet is also widely known as the keto diet, and this basically means you need to focus more on protein and fat rather than on carbohydrates.
When you stick to a strict keto diet, your body must go through a period of ketosis to achieve your fitness goals.
While visiting Bali, Indonesia, I recently experienced a dish called ‘Ceviche’, and a question came to my mind, “is ceviche keto friendly?”
So, I took the liberty to research all about it and let you know about its facts. Now, all you must do is sit tight and read the article to find out the answer.
Table of Contents
Things To Know About Ceviche
Ceviche is a fish-based dish that originated in Peru and is popular in most countries in South and North America nowadays. The main ingredients are:
- Raw fish or shrimp
- Key lime
- Chili pepper
Ceviche is a raw fish dish with a citrus twist. In addition to imparting taste, the citric acid denatures the proteins in the seafood, giving it the impression of cooking.
You can use chili pepper to spice things up. Ceviche is a relatively simple dish to cook despite its stunning appearance that looks complex.
Basically, you can use lime juice for cooking the raw fish or the shrimp. You can further cook it or just throw it in the fridge after adding the ingredients; it is totally up to you. That is what is so special about this dish.
Now, as this is a raw fish dish, it is essential to use the freshest fish you can manage. While the acid in the lime juice marinade causes it to alter, it does not destroy the microorganisms in the same way that cooking does.
However, lime juice contains a lot of carbohydrates and is very low in fat. So, to increase the amount of fat, mixing it with avocadoes is a common practice.
What Is Keto Diet?
Is ceviche keto friendly? To answer this question, you first must understand the keto diet. The basic target of a keto diet is to gain more energy by consuming more protein and fat and fewer carbohydrates. This kind of diet is mainly used to lose weight, but it can also assist in managing certain medical disorders.
The minimum level of carbohydrate consumption in human beings is 50-60 grams. When you will eat less than the required amount, your body will run out of fuel it needs for respiration.
The burning fuel is the blood sugar, and it takes 2-3 days for the breakdown process to complete. At that moment, your body will start to break down stored fat and protein which results in weight reduction.
The above-explained process is known as ketosis. Another important fact to note down is that the keto diet not only helps in weight loss but also contributes to managing good body health.
Now, we have learned a lot about the diet, but we are still to discover a highly important fact about this diet. There are specific categories of the keto diet:
- Clean Keto
- Dirty Keto
A clean keto is a health-focused approach to the keto diet, which blends the paleo diet’s good nutritional density with keto’s fat-burning macros.
A regular routine of a standard keto diet contains 20-50 grams of carbohydrate consumption, a minimum of 20% of protein, and high fat to maintain health. The clean keto follows a similar rule and additionally some foods which contain more minerals and vitamins.
As your body receives fewer carbohydrates, it puts the body into ketosis. The body begins to burn fat for energy instead of carbohydrates, leading to several health advantages such as weight loss and low blood sugar. Grain, rice, potatoes, pastries, pasta, and most fruits are highly limited or prohibited.
Dirty keto follows almost the same rules as the clean keto, only with one alteration. This keto diet method does not care about the sources of nutrition. Let it be a Paratha dipped in butter or a Hamburger with extra cheese; the only thing to care about is the amount of fat you get into the body. The remaining process of ketosis is all the same.
Dirty keto is also known as lazy keto since it allows for highly processed and packaged meals. It’s appealing to those who desire to go into ketosis without spending much effort preparing clean keto meals.
Packaged foods are more likely to contain chemicals and fewer micronutrients that the body needs. Furthermore, they are linked to a number of unfavorable health outcomes, including weight gain, diabetes, and heart diseases.
You can reach ketosis by following the dirty keto, which will be a long process, but it does not provide all the natural benefits that a clean keto diet does.
Is Ceviche Healthy?
All the components needed to make ceviche are healthy and clean, and it is minimal in carbohydrates and has a high amount of protein. You can serve ceviche as an appetizer, side dish, or a light meal.
From eating 100 grams of ceviche, we consume 69 calories. Below, you will see a chart showing all the nutrients we intake from 100 grams of ceviche.
|Vitamin A||34 micrograms|
|Vitamin C||29 micrograms|
The dish is low in fat and carbohydrates while it has a sufficient amount of protein and has the minerals necessary for the human body. It is not a tool for increasing fat and is not specifically bad for your body.
On the contrary, ceviche is a kind of dish which you can cook without heat, and the main ingredient is raw fish. The raw fish is cooked with the citric acid of the lime juice. As we do not use any heat to prepare the dish, there’s a risk of harmful pathogens.
Especially people with weak immune systems, liver problems, and pregnant women should actively avoid raw fish. If the fish used to prepare the dish is fresh, there is no need to worry. But you should not take any risk in case of sick people. Hence, I can give a verdict that, no matter what, ceviche is a pretty healthy dish.
Can We Consider Ceviche Keto Friendly?
Now that you have a little knowledge about both the food item and the diet, you can further discuss, “is ceviche keto friendly?” The answer could be yes and no at the same time. Because although ceviche is not exactly keto-friendly, we can make it keto-friendly with some moderation.
The dish is low in net carbohydrates and free of non-keto components such as artificial sweeteners, sugar, and highly refined oil. On the other hand, it is common in fat too, which is an essential element for ketosis, as we know from the above discussion.
The amount of carbohydrate in ceviche is low, making it keto-friendly, and again the amount of fat is lower, which gives us the verdict of it not being so keto-friendly. So, which way to go?
As I have mentioned about it earlier, we can make it keto-friendly with some slight alterations in the recipe. And the answer is avocado. Yes, you heard me right, and we can make the dish keto-friendly with the use of avocado.
How Does Avocado Make Ceviche Keto Friendly?
The two main ingredients of ceviche are raw fish/shrimp and lime juice. Now, it is to our knowledge that in every 100 grams of lime juice, there are about 8 grams of carbohydrates, whereas, in the case of avocado, the amount is 9 grams. So, we see that both lime juice and avocado contain almost the same amount of carbohydrates.
Again, if we consider the amount of fat in lime juice and avocado, the numbers are 0.1 gram and 15 grams, respectively. This means avocado possesses a lot more fat than the other substance, and also keep in mind that both contain almost the same amount of carbohydrates.
We also know that both fat and carbohydrates are crucial to the keto diet. Therefore, if we mix a sufficient amount of avocado with the lime juice while making the dish, we can make ceviche keto-friendly.
But we must keep in mind that we cannot replace the lime juice with the avocado entirely. Because the acid from the lime juice is what cooks the raw fish as we do not use heat in the making. If the lime juice is replaced, it defeats the whole purpose.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can ceviche be considered dangerous?
Ceviche is made with raw, undercooked raw fish as a basis. You should remember that uncooked fish may contain bacteria that may cause human illness. It is important to note that only the freshest fish should be used while making fish ceviche.
This can be a significant reason why some people might consider ceviche is dangerous for health. But if fresh ingredients are used, there is no danger to eating ceviche, and it is a fact that I can personally vouch for.
2. Does ceviche help gain weight?
No, ceviche is not a dish you should eat if you are willing to gain some weight. The dish is pretty low in carbohydrates and fat. But as it is a fish-based item, it’s high in protein.
So, the protein might help you gain a little weight. But you will probably have to eat ceviche a huge amount to gain weight from it. To summarize, it is just not practical.
3. What is the amount of calories in ceviche?
100 grams of ceviche has about 69 calories. To illustrate, a regular serving size of ceviche (342 grams) has around 212 calories. It accounts for approximately 9% of daily calorie consumption for an adult of average weight and activity level.
4. What kind of keto category does ceviche fall in?
Ceviche is most definitely a clean keto diet. Dirty keto mainly consists of processed and packaged products.
On the contrary, the things we need to prepare for ceviche are raw fish or shrimp, lime juice, lemon, onions, avocado, chili pepper, etc. All of these are natural items. Hence, ceviche is undoubtedly a clean keto diet.
5. Can we recommend ceviche for pregnant women?
As pregnant women are carrying a life inside their bodies, I will recommend that they should avoid any kind of raw fish or shellfish as they are prone to bacterial and viral infection.
People with liver conditions and immune system disorders should also not eat these kinds of food. Although if proper substances are used, there are supposed to be no problems, people with the above conditions should avoid these foods just in case.
6. How many kinds of ceviche are there?
There are almost 10 to 12 ceviche dishes present in modern cuisine. Every type of ceviche is unique and delicious in taste.
Ceviche mixto (Mixed ceviche), Ceviche de pulpo (Octopus ceviche), Ceviche de conchas negras (Black conch ceviche), Ceviche de champignones (Mushroom ceviche), Conch ceviche, Ceviche de sierra, Ceviche tico, and Ceviche colima are some of the most popular ceviche items in the present day.
7. Where did ceviche originate?
Some archeological theorists indicated that the ceviche dish originated some 2000 years ago in Peru’s coastal Moche civilization. Still, there are debates about the origin of this seafood delicacy.
According to some, the dish might have also originated in Ecuador. However, it eventually spread and became famous in Mexico and Central America.
8. Should the dish ceviche be served cold?
Ceviche is the best dish to serve cold. As we do not use any kind of heat to prepare the dish, it is not new to us that we cannot eat the dish hot.
Like other seafood, ceviche is served cold, and you can use fresh veggies such as onion, garlic, tomatoes, and fresh herbs and spices to add a little improvisation to the recipe.
So, is ceviche keto friendly? The answer is pretty puzzling because it is low in carbohydrates and fat. So, my opinion would be, yes, ceviche is keto-friendly but only with a bit of moderation. When we use avocado to increase the amount of fat, it becomes super keto-friendly.
Moreover, all the ingredients needed to prepare the dish are natural, making it a healthy food. Still, too much consumption of anything is harmful to health.
My suggestion would be, if you want to lose weight, change your lifestyle, and if you are going to try some mouth-watering food, try Ceviche!