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Last Updated on April 23, 2022 by Mandy Schmitz
Someone struggling to calculate macros during a keto diet will naturally wonder which foods are keto-friendly. One such question is: are grapes keto? However, before moving to the answer, let’s refresh your memory about this particular diet.
A ketogenic diet uses the minimum possible amount of net carbs for producing energy. This low-carb diet puts an emphasis on burning fats to produce energy.
The required dietary intake for this low-carb diet is:
- 5% carbs
- 25% protein
- 70% fats
Because it requires a low-carb intake, almost every food item will naturally come under scrutiny. That’s why people on keto have to always look for low-carb fruits, vegetables, foods, and whatnot.
One fruit that people on keto often wonder about is the grape. So let’s first see what grapes are, and then we will look into whether grapes are keto-friendly.
Grape is a fruit growing on woody vines in clusters. These round to oval-shaped berries have a sour to sweet taste depending on the type.
Most people eat grapes on their own or use them in fruit salads. Other uses of grapes include grape jams and jellies, juice, vinegar, or wine.
The dried form of grapes is eaten as currants or raisins.
Now that we know the fruit and its uses, here’s the answer to the question:
Grapes are not keto-friendly. A half-cup of grapes contains about 14.4 grams of carbs. The daily carb limit for the keto diet ranges from 20 to 50 grams. So if you consume even just a cup of grapes, you’ll be exhausting your total carb limit for the day.
So, when choosing to eat grapes on a keto diet, bear these points in mind:
A single, average-sized piece of grape contains 0.4 grams of carbs. That doesn’t necessarily exceed the keto carb limit, but the problem is that nobody eats only one grape.
Most of us keep gobbling them down without thinking about the number of net carbs we ingest.
Someone who consumes a cup of grapes takes 27 grams of net carbs per serving. And, of course, you cannot stick to a cup of grapes for a whole day. So you have disturbed the net carbs intake even if you take a quarter of a bread slice during the day after the grapes.
Considering that the net carbs you can take per day can be as low as 50 grams for a keto diet, eating grapes isn’t a good idea.
Grapes have 110 calories per cup. While the calorie level is not quite high for an average 1500-2000 calorie diet, it is still not suitable for ketogenesis.
However, someone with a highly active lifestyle may consume these calories and still keep themselves in keto. By highly active, we mean someone who works out hard at least six days a week. But that’s rare. So, it is better to avoid these yummy berries on a keto diet, even when they offer many health benefits.
Since grapes cannot be counted as a low-carb fruit, they limit the body’s ability to use fat and go through the process of ketosis.
The main idea behind a keto diet is to cut the body’s dependence on carbs for generating energy. A low-carb diet shifts your body’s reliance on fats and produces ketones as an alternate energy source.
When you take fruits like grapes, you’re breaking the dependence on fats for energy production in the body. As such, it will negatively impact your body’s ability to lose weight.
The problem with grapes is that you can easily underestimate the quantity of fruit eaten. In short, it’s the number of grapes, rather than the fruit itself, that knocks you out of ketosis.
Countries like China, Chile, Italy, the United States, and many others produce millions of metric tons of grapes per year. Although the fruit has a high net carb ratio, it is one of the most widely cultivated fruits.
Grapes are primarily classified into two categories—table grapes and wine grapes. These two categories have thousands of varieties within them. We will look into some of the most popular types of grapes:
- Concord – Used primarily as table grapes, wine grapes, and juicing.
- Almeria – A white grape type usually grown in the US and Spain.
- Niagara – A cultivar grown in the North American region.
- Cotton Candy – These grapes got their name because they taste like cotton candy.
- Gamay – A purple grape variant used to make red wine.
- Pinotage – These are signature South African grapes used to make red wine.
- Malbec – Also a purple grape variety used in making red wine.
- White Wine Grapes – This is a class of grapes with many variants that yield white wine.
There are two ways of picking grapes. You either pick the fresh fruits directly from the vine or buy them from the nearby superstore.
If you’re picking the fruit directly from the vine, make sure the fruit doesn’t have moisture. Use shears to cut the clusters, and store them in a container without washing them.
For store-bought grapes, pick tight fruit clusters that do not have shedding berries. Once home, keep these points in mind:
- Do not wash the grapes unless you want to eat them right away.
- Keep the clusters intact.
- Put the grapes in a cool, dry place, ideally a refrigerator.
The Grape-Nut Cereal is the opposite of a keto diet option. It has too many net carbs (about 47 grams in a 58-gram serving size). That’s equivalent to the total carbs allowed on a thorough keto meal plan.
The keto nature of stuffed grape leaves is subjective to their filling. There are keto-friendly stuffing options available for grape leaves. However, while consuming stuffed grape leaves, keep in mind that a 134-gram serving size of grape leaves carries 16 grams of carbs.
So, if you don’t need to eat them, it’s better to avoid stuffed grape leaves while you’re on a keto diet.
Grape vinegar is keto-friendly if you take it in controlled amounts. Grape vinegar or balsamic vinegar comes in many varieties. Some brands have no carbs per tablespoon, so check the particular grape vinegar’s carb content and calculate your macros.
Grape jams are not standardized products. Therefore, they can have varying levels of carbs according to the amount of sugar used in the preparation. However, you should expect carbs ranging between 13-20 gm per tablespoon of grape jam.
Grape jello is pretty high in carbs. An average serving of 22 grams of grape jello contains about 19 grams of carbs, which is a whopping 90% of the total serving size.
Like most fruit juice, grape juice is extracted by first crushing and then blending the fruit. As a result, grape juice, too, has a high carb ratio. A famous brand of grape juice, for instance, has 37 grams of carbs per 240ml serving.
Grapeseed oil is a derivative of grapeseed. It’s a by-product of winemaking and doesn’t have any carbohydrates. Therefore, you can use it as a part of your keto diet.
Grapes are delicious and have many potential benefits. However, they are not suitable for a keto diet due to their high carbohydrate content. Not only grapes, but almost all the products derived from grapes are not keto-friendly.
To maintain your fruit intake on a low-carb diet, you can consume fruits like watermelon or strawberries. Leave the grapes for wine production.
You cannot consume more than one-third cup of grapes on a strict ketogenic diet. A half-cup of grapes carries almost 14 grams of carbs which is only 5 grams less than the 20 gram allowed limit on the keto diet.
However, some keto meal plans allow up to 50 grams of carbohydrates per day. So if you’re following any such regimen, you can consume about two and a half cups of grapes in a day. Unfortunately, though, that means you cannot take in any more carbs for the day other than grapes.
No type of grape is low on carbs, including green grapes. Therefore, it is better to avoid grapes altogether while on keto.
Grapes can easily knock you out of ketosis due to their high carb content. Your body needs increased amounts of fat and the lowest carbs to stay in keto, so consuming grapes on a low-carb, keto diet is not recommended.
You can have wine while on keto, but remember to check the carbohydrate content of the wine you’re drinking. Also, not every wine is suitable for a keto diet regimen because it will slow down your weight loss progress.