Following the keto diet means cutting back on carbs so that you’re consuming less than 50 grams per day. Since sugars are carbohydrates, that means lowering your sugar intake, too.
Because of this, many people start looking for drinks to replace their favorite sodas and fruit juices when they first start trying to get into a state of ketosis.
One of the first weight-loss-friendly soft drink replacements you’ll probably come across in your research is Crystal Light. But is Crystal Light keto-friendly, and more than that, is it even good for you?
What’s Crystal Light?
If you’ve never heard of Crystal Light before, you might be wondering what on earth we’re talking about.
Crystal Light is a powdered flavoring that can be added to water to create a soft drink replacement. It comes in various flavors as well as various pack sizes. You can get ‘On The Go’ packs, for example, which are smaller servings for when you’re out and about.
In addition to the different flavors of Crystal Light, which include Kiwi & Strawberry, Lemonade, Raspberry Lemonade, Orange, and Cherry & Pomegranate, Crystal Light recently released Crystal Light Pure.
The latter is advertised as a less artificial product for those who are concerned about synthetic chemicals.
The appeal of Crystal Light is that while it doesn’t contain much (if any) sugar, it’s incredibly sweet, so it can help to curb those sugar cravings when you’re trying to stick to your keto diet.
The reason it’s able to taste so sweet is because it contains several different sweeteners, including aspartame, acesulfame potassium, and sucralose. In some cases, depending on the flavor you choose, there may also be some sugar in the recipe.
Let’s find out more about the nutritional profile of Crystal Light.
Crystal Light Nutritional Information
While nutritional statistics can vary slightly depending on the flavor of Crystal Light you choose to drink, the average sachet of Crystal Light contains:
- 0 grams of carbohydrates
- 0 grams of protein
- 0 grams of fat
There are only 10 calories in an average-sized sachet of Crystal Light.
Is Crystal Light Keto-Friendly?
Crystal Light can fit into a ketogenic diet because it doesn’t contain any carbohydrates, which is what you’ll mainly be avoiding if you’re trying to maintain a state of ketosis.
Admittedly, Crystal Light doesn’t contain any fat, either, which means that it won’t contribute to the high fat percentage you’ll be trying to achieve each day.
However, as long as you get plenty of healthy fats from other sources in your diet, the fact that there’s no fat in your glass of Crystal Light shouldn’t be an issue.
In theory, you could probably drink many sachets of Crystal Light per day without going out of ketosis. However, we definitely wouldn’t recommend doing this for reasons we’re about to explain.
What’s Wrong With Crystal Light?
Crystal Light may be keto-friendly, but that doesn’t mean it’s good for you. In fact, drinking Crystal Light on a regular basis, particularly in large quantities, could be harmful for your health.
First of all, the artificial sweeteners that give Crystal Light its sweet taste are far from healthy. Aspartame, for example, has been linked to a variety of unpleasant symptoms, including fatigue, headaches, memory loss, dizziness, and a reduction in your ability to taste properly.
Some studies have even suggested that consuming a large amount of aspartame could increase your risk of certain cancers.
Sucralose isn’t innocent, either. It’s basically sugar that has been chlorinated, and having too much of it can cause headaches and stomach issues.
Some people’s ability to process important medications is negatively affected by sucralose consumption, and a percentage of consumers have even reported an increase in allergy symptoms.
The citrus-flavored Crystal Light sachets also contain an ingredient called potassium citrate. While this chemical has its benefits, including improving bone density, it can also cause digestive upset and irritated skin.
So, the takeaway here is that just because something can fit into the ketogenic diet doesn’t mean it’s healthy and doesn’t mean you should add it to your diet. Crystal Light is a great example of this.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Can I Drink Instead Of Crystal Light For Keto?
Luckily, just because Crystal Light isn’t good for you doesn’t mean you can’t find other drinks to replace soft drinks while doing keto. If you’re looking for an energy boost, you can drink coffee, black tea, or green tea, for example.
Since you’ll also want to make sure you’re getting an adequate amount of protein to sustain your weight loss, you might also want to try keto-friendly protein shakes like those sold by the brand Perfect Keto. Check them out!
Does Crystal Light Spike Insulin?
One thing you don’t need to worry about with Crystal Light is your insulin spiking. Crystal Light doesn’t contain enough sugar to spike your insulin, even if it has other negative health effects.
Will Crystal Light Make Me Gain Weight?
Since there are only 10 calories per normal-sized sachet of Crystal Light, it’s extremely unlikely that you could drink enough of it to cause weight gain.
Even if you were to drink Crystal Light on top of your allotted calories for the day, you’d need to drink several sachets to put yourself into a significant caloric surplus for the day.
We don’t recommend doing this, though, since you should try to limit your intake of artificial sweeteners and chemicals.
Crystal light might be keto-friendly from a technical perspective since it’s very low in carbs, but it’s not something we’d recommend adding to your keto diet.
It’s full of artificial sweeteners and chemicals that can have negative side effects, especially if you drink a lot of it on a regular basis.
Instead of Crystal Light, try swapping carb-heavy soft drinks for low-carb alternatives like coffee, green tea, or keto-friendly protein shakes.
The occasional Crystal Light shouldn’t be a problem, but it’s best avoided if your goal in going keto is to achieve an optimal state of health and wellbeing.