Lemons are probably one of the first to come to mind when you think of citrus fruits, and for good reason. They’re packed with nutrients and have a lot of medicinal and practical uses as well.
But as far as its carb content goes, there’s still a lot of confusion among keto dieters. Are lemons keto approved or are you better off with another citrus fruit instead? Let’s find out more below.
What Makes Lemons Such a Popular Choice for Low Carb Diets?
The first thing that we’re going to take a look at is what exactly it is that makes lemons such a popular food choice among keto dieters in the first place. Here are 5 of the main reasons why lemons are so popular:
- Lemons are a low calorie fruit that can still help to promote satiety due to their high water content.
- They’re a rich source of several essential vitamins and minerals, most notably being an excellent source of the antioxidant vitamin C.
- Lemons provide a range of proven health benefits, including the ability to help protect against cardiovascular disease and cancer.
- Both lemons and lemon extracts provide many of the purported benefits.
- Lemons are quite easy to incorporate into a variety of keto recipes (keto lemonade, keto lemon cakes, etc).
Are Lemons Keto?
Lemons are definitely 100% keto approved. This is because lemons contain very few net carbs. A 100 gram serving of lemons contains approximately 3 grams of dietary fiber, so that helps, too. In addition, lemons also have a high water content, which means you’re getting a lot of food volume without too many calories or carbs.
Lemons are known for being a good source of Vitamin C, which, as we all know, provides you with a ton of important health benefits in its own right.
Finally, lemons are also quite versatile and can be used in many ways by keto dieters. Their low sugar content makes them a great candidate for making keto-friendly lemonades and they’re also great for making tart and tasty baked lemon breads and cakes.
Lemon Nutrition Facts
Here is the approximate nutritional breakdown for a 100 gram serving size of lemons:
- 29 calories
- 0.3 grams dietary fat
- 1.1 grams protein
- 9 grams carbs
- 2.8 grams dietary fiber
- 2.5 grams sugar
- 0 mg cholesterol
- 2 mg sodium
- 138 mg potassium
Keto-friendly Lemon Recipes
Health Benefits of Lemons
Both lemons and lemon juice can provide you with quite a few health benefits. Here are the top 3:
- Protects your heart health. Citrus flavonoids like those found in lemons, limes, and oranges have been found to help protect against heart disease and stroke. In addition to that, studies have also found that daily consumption of lemons or lemon juice combined with a moderate amount of walking can help to relieve hypertension. (1)(2)
- May help with losing weight. Lemons have a reputation as a popular weight loss food due to the high water content. This means that lemons can help to promote feelings of satiety much like regular water does, which can lead to a reduced calorie intake. (3)
- May protect against cancer. Citrus fruits like lemons and oranges are incredibly rich in the antioxidant vitamin C, which provides a wide range of health benefits, including protection against chronic inflammation and diseases such as cancer and diabetes. On top of that, compounds found in citrus juices and their extracts, have also been found to demonstrate anti-cancer activity. (4)
Keto Lemon Alternatives
Not a fan of lemons or lemon juice? No problem, you can easily use any of these keto approved lemon alternatives in their place:
- Vinegar (as a lemon juice substitute)
- Cream of tartar (as a lemon juice substitute)