There’s no denying that the ketogenic diet, also known as keto, has been proven to have benefits for weight loss. There’s even research to suggest that eating keto can be good for your heart and brain, and decrease the symptoms of certain illnesses.
Since the keto diet comes with strict rules regarding fat and carbohydrate percentages, though, you need to think carefully about your food choices.
Many types of meat fit within the ketogenic diet since they’re high in fat and low in carbs. However, lower-fat meats might not be the best choice for a keto diet plan.
Salami is a very popular meat, so many people starting keto want to know if they can still enjoy it when maximizing their fat intake and holding back on the carbs.
What Exactly Is Salami?
Salami is sausage meat that has been minced and then either fermented or air-dried. This is also known as curing. Due to the fermentation or air-drying process, salami is one of the few meats that can safely be eaten without needing to be cooked.
Salami was originally made from pork, which is what you might expect given that it’s known as sausage meat.
However, these days, the exact origin of the meat in salami is less clear. It can contain many different types of meat and game, either individually or combined within the same piece of salami.
Just some examples of the types of meat used to make salami in addition to pork include lamb, beef, venison, and dick. Even donkey meat has been known to make its way into salami.
Because it can be difficult to pinpoint exactly what meat is in the salami you buy from the store, some people might choose to avoid it. However, you may be surprised by how nutritionally beneficial salami can be!
Salami Nutritional Information
While salami might not be up there with, say, lean chicken breast when it comes to the healthiest meat options, it can have many benefits for your health.
For one thing, salami is an excellent source of protein, which isn’t too surprising since it’s a meat product. All the same, this is a good thing to bear in mind when deciding whether to incorporate it into your diet.
Crucially for those following the ketogenic diet, salami is high in fats. Admittedly, most of the fats in salami are saturated fats, and it’s recommended to focus more on healthy fats when doing keto because they’re better for your heart and cholesterol levels.
With that being said, people on the ketogenic diet can have up to 7% saturated fats per day.
One thing to be wary of when it comes to salami, regardless of what macro percentages you’re aiming for, is the fact that salami contains a lot of sodium.
Now, sodium has been quite demonized by diet culture, and it’s true that the human body needs a certain amount of sodium to function properly.
However, it can have a lot of negative effects if consumed excessively, from bloating to high blood pressure. Therefore, in addition to the saturated fat content, this is another good reason not to go too wild on the salami.
Salami is high in B vitamins, including vitamins B12 and B1, both of which are essential for a healthy diet. B12 will help to keep the cells in your body functioning properly and help to produce DNA.
Meanwhile, vitamin B1 will keep your nervous system healthy and is essential for carbohydrate-energy conversion.
Is Salami Ketogenic?
So, bearing in mind everything we’ve just covered about the nutritional value of salami, can salami be part of the ketogenic diet? The answer is yes!
Salami is high in fats (albeit saturated fats) and low in carbs, containing just a single gram of carbohydrates per 100 grams of the meat product.
However, as we already mentioned, salami has potential nutritional drawbacks as well as benefits. It contains a lot of sodium, and you want to make sure that your diet consists of no more than 7% saturated fat.
Therefore, while salami is fine in moderation on the keto diet, it shouldn’t be an everyday thing.
How To Eat Salami While On Keto
Salami is commonly used as a sandwich filler, or as a topping on pizza. However, since the keto diet involves limiting carbohydrate intake, neither of these popular ways of consuming salami are likely to be suitable for keto.
Luckily, there are other ways to fit salami into your keto diet. Salami is incredible as part of a charcuterie board alongside other high-fat, low-carb foods such as cheese and olives. Just remember that both olives and cheese contain nutrients you should moderate, such as sodium and fat.
Salami also pairs well with eggs, so consider chopping up some salami and sprinkling it over your scrambled eggs or cooking it into an omelet.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Pepperoni The Same As Salami?
Pepperoni and salami are different types of cured meats. Pepperoni has more spice and contains more fat as well as vitamins D, E, and A. Meanwhile, salami has more protein and contains more vitamin B. Both can be included in the keto diet.
What Deli Meats Are Keto-Friendly?
In addition to salami and pepperoni, other deli meats you could incorporate into your keto lifestyle include corned beef, bologna, ham, and pastrami. Just be sure to read the labels so you can track your macros properly.
Is Salami Good For Weight Loss?
Many people follow the keto diet to lose weight. While eating salami can be a part of this, eating too much of it will lead to overconsumption of saturated fats and sodium, which can lead to weight gain and water retention.
Salami can be consumed as part of a ketogenic lifestyle because it’s very low in carbohydrates and high in fat.
However, remember that most of the fat in salami is saturated, and it also contains a lot of sodium, so be careful not to have too much or you could compromise your macros.