Health enthusiasts and dieters are following a ketogenic diet, and for good reason. It’s an incredibly effective way to lose weight and improve overall health. But, as with any new diet, there’s much to learn before you can start. 

If this is your first time trying or hearing about keto, this guide will provide all the information you need to start on the right foot. It will cover the types of keto as well as foods to include and avoid when going on a ketogenic diet. 

Types of Keto 

1. Standard Keto Diet (SKD)

SKD is the most basic and widely-accepted form of a ketogenic diet. It involves reducing carb intake to just 20-50 grams per day while increasing fat intake to reach a ratio of 70-75% fat, 20-25% protein, and 5-10% carbohydrates. This diet is generally used by those looking to lose weight or improve their overall health, as the low-carb, high-fat macronutrient ratio helps to promote fat-burning and weight loss. It also encourages the body to burn fat for energy instead of glucose, which can help reduce blood sugar levels and improve overall health.

2. Cyclical Keto Diet (CKD)

CKD involves periods of eating high-fat, low-carbohydrate meals followed by periods of higher-carbohydrate, lower-fat meals. Bodybuilders often use this diet to help build muscle and increase strength while losing fat. CKD is usually done in 5-6 day cycles, with the high-carb days occurring after the high-fat days to replenish muscle glycogen stores. This diet benefits athletes and those looking to improve their body composition or performance.

3. Targeted Keto Diet (TKD)

TKD allows for more carbohydrates to be consumed around workout times. The goal of this particular keto diet is to provide an additional source of energy to fuel your workout and help you maximize your performance. With TKD, you consume carbohydrates before and after your workout to ensure that your muscles have the energy for optimal performance. You will still follow a strict ketogenic diet for the rest of the day.

4. High-Protein Keto Diet (HPKD)

This type of diet is ideal for those looking to lose weight while still maintaining a high level of protein intake. With HPKD, carbohydrates are typically limited to around 20-30 grams daily, while protein and fat are increased to keep hunger and cravings at bay. The goal of HPKD is to provide the body with the proper nutrition while allowing it to enter ketosis and burn its own fat for energy.

What to Include

  • Eggs: Rich in nutrients and healthy fats, eggs are a great choice on a keto diet. 
  • Avocado: Loaded with healthy fats, fiber, and vitamins, avocados are an incredibly nutritious and versatile ingredient. 
  • Salmon: High in omega-3 fatty acids, salmon is a rich source of proteins and healthy fats.
  • Olive Oil: Rich in antioxidants and monounsaturated fatty acids, olive oil is an excellent choice for cooking and salads.
  • Cold-Cuts: Cold cuts like turkey, ham, and roast beef are high in protein and can be used for various recipes.
  • Nuts and Seeds: Walnuts, almonds, and chia seeds are packed with healthy fats and protein.
  • Cheese: An excellent source of healthy fats and protein and can be eaten as a snack or to top dishes.
  • Cream: Cream is a versatile and delicious ingredient that can be added to dishes or used as a topping.
  • Coconut Oil: Coconut oil is filled with medium-chain triglycerides and can be used for cooking or in smoothies.
  • Dark Chocolate: Dark chocolate is a treat that can be consumed in moderation when following a keto diet.

What to Avoid

  • Processed Food: Anything packaged in a box, bag, or can, such as crackers, chips, and sugary snacks.
  • Dairy: High-carb dairy products like milk, yogurt, and ice cream.
  • Sweets and Desserts: Sugar, honey, agave, and other sweeteners.
  • Fruits: High-carb fruits like oranges, bananas, apples, grapes, and other tropical fruits.
  • Starchy Vegetables: Potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, and other starchy vegetables.
  • Legumes: Beans, peas, lentils, and other legumes.
  • Nuts and Seeds: Cashews, peanuts, almonds, and other high-carb nuts and seeds.
  • Grains: Wheat, rice, oats, and other grains.
  • Alcohol: Beer, wine, liquor, and other alcoholic beverages.
  • Sugary Drinks: Soda, juice, and other sugary drinks.


For those who want to shed extra pounds and maintain a healthy lifestyle, doing keto is the best way to go. It requires a commitment to eating foods rich in fat and low in carbohydrates. It also requires a lifestyle change and dedication to following the ketogenic diet plan.

Visit Smart Cooking Recipes for easy-to-follow keto recipes. We help you get the most out of your keto diet and make it easy to stay on track. You’ll also find helpful tips and advice on how to keep fit and healthy. Check out this guide to making the right keto meal plan for you!