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Is Ginger Keto Friendly?

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If you’re new to a keto diet you may find yourself seated in a Japanese restaurant wondering, “Is ginger keto friendly?” Or if you’re staring at an ingredient list for a recipe, the presence of ginger on that list may also spark wonder. In this quick article we’ll cover if ginger is keto or not in all of its different forms.

photo of ginger with text that says is ginger keto friendly

Is Ginger Keto? The Quick Explanation:

Ginger in its raw state is keto friendly because it’s low in carbs, sugar and protein. It is also advantageous to eat on a ketogenic diet because it’s a stimulant and will aid in digestion and speed up your metabolism.

Ginger does have many forms. Raw, pickled, powdered and ginger cooked into dishes are keto friendly. Candied and preserved (dehydrated) ginger aren’t keto friendly because they are high in sugar and carbohydrates.

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Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Raw Ginger Nutrition Facts

Values Per 1 Teaspoon Serving:

Net carbs0.3 g
Fat0.0 g
Protein0.0 g
Total carbs0.4 g
Fiber0.0 g

Is Ginger High in Carbs?

No ginger is not high in carbs in its pickled, raw and powdered state. The only kind of ginger that’s high in carbs is candied ginger.

Why Is Ginger Healthy?

Ginger has so many health benefits that I could devote an entire blog post to explaining them to you! In short, you should always incorporate ginger into your diet when it’s possible. If that isn’t enough to convince you, here are some of the health benefits of ginger:

  1. Fights cancer cells
  2. Aids digestion
  3. Supports immune health
  4. Detoxifies the body
  5. Aids in digestion
  6. Fights inflammation
  7. Natural pain killer
  8. Helps migraines
  9. Reduces pain from mensural cramps
  10. Helps with diabetes by lowering blood sugar and supports insulin release

Can You Drink Lemon and Ginger Tea On Keto?

Yes, you can drink lemon and ginger tea on a keto diet as long as you don’t sweeten it or you can use a natural sweetener that won’t raise your glycemic index like monk fruit or stevia.

Is Honey Keto?

Unfortunately, honey is not keto friendly. Nothing goes better with ginger tea than a heaping teaspoon of raw honey, but if you’re on a keto diet you should use an alternative. Honey is high in sugar and carbs.

Nutrition facts for 1 tablespoon of honey:

  • Calories: 64.
  • Protein: 0 grams.
  • Fat: 0 grams.
  • Carbohydrates: 17 grams.
  • Fiber: 0 grams.
  • Sugar: 17 grams.

Sugars are a source of carbohydrates. Since honey is high in sugar it’s high in carbs. When you consume a food that is high in carbohydrates you’re giving your body its original source of fuel back.

How Eating Honey and Carbs Pulls The Body Out of Ketosis

The whole idea behind ketosis is that our bodies are primed to use carbohydrates as our main fuel source. So when you deny the body carbohydrates it has to utilize ketones (fat) for energy. By dumping a ton of carbs from eating honey back into the blood stream your body will go back to utilizing carbs for energy instead of fat and pull you out of ketosis.

Eating honey will provide an easily digestible and oh so tempting amount of carbs in the form of sugar that your body can use to refill its glycogen stores instead of burning ketones which is way more work for your body.

What Are Some Keto Friendly Alternatives to Honey For Ginger Tea?

If you like your ginger tea sweet like I do, don’t worry there are plenty of natural honey alternatives that aren’t loaded with chemicals and won’t raise your glycemic index or pull you out of ketosis.

  • Stevia
  • Monk Fruit Sugar

Not all fake sugars are good for a keto diet. Most are riddled with chemicals. Some can even raise your glycemic index more than natural sugar. To learn more about which artificial sweeteners are keto friendly and which are not read this article I wrote, “Is Sugar Free Jello Keto Friendly?” In this article I covered lots of common artificial sweeteners and why they are not keto friendly.

What Should I Drink In The Morning On Keto?

Earlier in this article we touched on keto friendly ginger tea. Fresh tea made with ginger and lemon without sugar is a great drink to have in the morning on keto. If you don’t like tea there are plenty of other alternatives.

  • Coffee with coconut milk
  • Green tea
  • Macha
  • Latte’s made with unsweetened coconut or almond milk
  • Expresso
  • Americano
  • Hot water with lemon
  • Cucumber juice
  • Celery juice
  • Cold brew

All of these drinks are stimulating to the bowel and low in carbs so they won’t pull you out of ketosis. In fact, starting your day with a keto friendly drink is a great way to incorporate the benefits of intermittent fasting into your daily routine.

Is Ginger Ale Keto Friendly?

Ginger ale is definitely not keto friendly at all. Like all soda drinks, ginger ale is full of chemicals, sugars and carbohydrates. These sugars and carbs will pull you right out of ketosis. Some keto friendly ginger ale alternatives include natural sodas made with safe zero calorie sweeteners like stevia.

Keto Friendly Ginger Ale Brands

  • Zevia Ginger Ale
  • 365 Ginger Ale
  • Reed’s Zero Real Ginger Ale

Will drinking diet coke kick me out of ketosis?

I hear this question a lot from readers. So while I’m on the soda topic I want to answer it. No, drinking diet coke won’t kick you out of ketosis because it’s sweetened with aspartame. While aspartame is not considered keto friendly because it’s highly processed, it won’t raise your blood sugar levels.

In other words, aspartame has zero effect on blood sugar levels so drinking diet coke will not artificially kick you out of ketosis by tricking your body into thinking that it has consumed carbohydrates in the form of sugar.

But just because drinking diet coke won’t ruin your keto diet doesn’t mean you should drink it. Diet coke is riddled with chemicals that have harmful effects on your body.

Alternatively, you can try naturally zero calorie sodas from brands like Zevia and Reeds.

Is Pickled Ginger Keto Friendly?

There are two types of pickled ginger and one is keto friendly and the other isn’t.

  • Natural pickled ginger be it homemade or from the grocery store is keto friendly.
  • Cheap pickled ginger found in most restaurants is not keto friendly because it contains aspartame. Aspartame has been associated with gas, bloating, headaches and a weakened immune system.

Is Pickled Ginger Healthy?

Pure pickled ginger is very healthy for you. Not only are you getting the health benefits of ginger, but you’re compounding those positive effects with the benefits of eating fermented foods. Pickled ginger is rich in probiotics making it good for gut health.

The caveat to this is that the cheap processed pickled ginger served in Japanese restaurants is not great for you because it contains aspartame. Aspartame causes gas, bloating and a weakened immune system.

You can make your own pickled ginger or buy a high quality pickled ginger like the Ginger People brand.

How Long Does It Take To Reach Ketosis

It usually takes the average person anywhere from 2-4 days to enter ketosis when they consume less then 50 grams of net carbohydrates per day.

How Do I Use Ginger On A Keto Diet

Ginger is a versatile ingredient that can be used to add a peppery and sweet flavor to many types of dishes. Ground ginger can be used in marinades, dressings and soups. While pickled ginger can be enjoyed on top of salads or with sashimi.

I’ve been using ground ginger, ginger juice and pickled ginger in my keto friendly recipes for years. Here are a few of my favorite keto friendly recipes that use ginger!

Keto Friendly Recipes with Ginger

Here are some of the best keto friendly recipes I make using ginger!

Carrot Ginger Miso Dressing

This Carrot Ginger Miso Dressing is quickly becoming one of my favorite dressings of all time. It’s rich and creamy without any dairy (it’s vegan)! Pour it over salads or use it as a dipping sauce for veggies. The recipe couldn’t be simpler, it has only 5 ingredients and 1 step!

Carrot ginger miso dressing in a clear bowl and on a spoon
Carrot Ginger Miso Dressing
This 5 ingredient ginger miso dressing is better than the restaurant! It's thick and creamy with just the right amount of saltiness and sweetness. Pour it over salads or use it as a dip for veggies!
Get the recipe!
Carrot ginger miso dressing in a clear bowl and on a spoon

Keto Miso Soup with Ginger

This comforting and delicious Keto Miso Soup is a 30 minute meal with big flavor! This gut healing soup contains miso paste and shiitake mushrooms for a fast and easy gluten free miso soup that satisfies.

bowl of miso soup
Tasty Keto Miso Soup (Gluten Free)
This authentic Miso Soup is naturally gluten free and keto. It's filled with yummy vegetables!
Check out this recipe
Homemade miso soup in a white bowl with vegetables

Common Questions and Answers

Is red ginger keto friendly?

Red ginger is different from regular ginger because it has a reddish color, is spicer and is typically used more often in medicine than in herbs. Even though it’s slightly different than regular ginger, red ginger is still low in carbohydrates and sugar making it a keto friendly food. Red ginger has only 1 gram of carbohydrates per single tablespoon serving.

How many net carbs are in ginger?

Ginger has .3 grams of net carbs.

Is ginger a vegetable?

Ginger is a vegetable. Much like a potato, onion or carrot, ginger is an edible root that grows in the ground.

Is ginger spicy?

Yes ginger is spicy, similar to black pepper. Ginger is less spicy than black pepper and has a slightly sweet, nutty and warm taste. Red ginger is spicier than regular ginger.

Is ginger edible raw?

Ginger is edible raw but I don’t recommend it. Ginger is a thick root so in its raw state it is fibrous and hard to chew. Unless it’s blended into something, pickled or powdered, it isn’t pleasant to eat. A great way to enjoy raw ginger is to juice it. Ginger juice is refreshing and delicious when taken straight. And it works well to flavor other juices, soups, stews, and marinades.

Is candied ginger good for you?

Sigh, unfortunately candied ginger isn’t good for you. Even though ginger itself has lots of health benefits, candied ginger is so high in sugar that it is bad for your bone heath and teeth. But as far as candy goes it’s healthier than other types of candy.

Candied ginger is typically made by boiling it in sugar water and then dehydrating it. So it has lots of sugar, but lacks the horrible chemicals found in most candy. If you want some candy you can enjoy candied ginger in moderation. Just make sure to brush your teeth right after!

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