Adapting the Keto Diet for Kids

I was a teenager when I first heard about the ketogenic diet. I had been diagnosed with juvenile myoclonic epilepsy in 1989. My life felt like it was ending. I was so relieved to hear that there were medications that I could take and that my doctor didn’t recommend the ketogenic diet! I could continue eating pizza and cereal whenever I wanted. It probably took me about a decade to realize that thinking was so wrong. Now that I’m in my forties, I’ve ditched the drugs and embraced keto. And guess what? My doctor was wrong about it not working for me. I actually feel better than I have in years!

So, if you have kids, Keto Mom approaches doing the keto diet with kids. She emphasizes to the kids which choices are better. She doesn’t buy foods that are unhealthy, but she allows the kids the opportunity to make those choices when they are at friends’ houses or birthday parties. Follow other ketogenic moms and get ideas from them!

Reducing the Carbohydrates At Home First

First and foremost, reduce the carbohydrates in your own home. This will help you become more successful with the ketogenic diet and it will help the child to feel that it is normal to eat this way. The great thing about the ketogenic diet is that there are tons of alternatives that are very filling and delicious. If you need any ideas for ketogenic recipes, you can check out the free keto cookbook.

There are ketogenic recipes for breakfasts, lunches, dinners, snacks and even ketogenic dessert ideas. Even though the ketogenic diet restricts the carbohydrates, and therefore reduces inflammation in their bodies, the options tha tyou have are limitless. Start incorporating regular keto meals into your life and encourage your kids to eat the way that you do. Don’t stress over going keto for a whole week at a time. Look up a recipe for ketogenic dinner and start making more and more ketogenic dinners for your family.

As your pantry that is stocked with high carbohydrate foods gets depleted, don’t replace the cereals and the oatmeal. These foods are highly inflammatory for your body. Look for ketogenic replacements that will nourish your body more.

Do It Together As A Family

I’m the author of Seizure Free, Addressing the Causes of Seizures Naturally. I was discussing the methods that I recommend for people with epilepsy with a parent and her child. She asked me about the ketogenic diet. I know that it can be difficult to adopt for people with epilepsy who have a degree of success on the medications. However, there is no reason why the whole family can’t do the ketogenic diet successfully and happily. You can go on youtube and discover that the ketogenic diet is helping people who are trying to lose weight, it is eli

minating symptoms of diabetes like it did for my neighbor, it is preventing seizures and Alzheimer’s. Embrace a lower carbohydrate way of living!

I will put this out there, my mother did an extreme diet with our family when I was eight and my sister had been diagnosed with diabetes. It was the macrobiotic diet. I was very resistant to this as a child. I will admit that my German Shepard dog got much of the rice that was put on my plate. I was not a fan of seaweed and ric

e! You shouldn’t have that problem so much with the ketogenic diet though. There are many great recipes and you can adapt them to children’s liking very easily. That was before the internet and recipe sharing. I did learn to eat weird looking food thanks to my mother’s experimentation with the Macrobiotic diet.

Discouraging Snacking

When you start the ketogenic diet, you are typically coming from a high carbohydrate diet. The standard American diet has us eating all the time because we burn through carbohydrates quickly. Fat is a much better fuel than carbohydrates. There are three simple ways to discourage snacking. This will work for kids who don’t have access to a car and can’t drive down to the local Starbucks and order a latte and a muffin.

  1. Stop keeping snack foods around
  2. Eat large and filling meals
  3. Close the kitchen when the meals are done.

When you don’t have all those nuts and Atkins bars around the house tempting you, you stop eating them. It is far more difficult to stop the snacking habit when some lovely grapes are staring you in the face.

Make sure that when you plan your meals, they are full of enough fat and protein that when you leave the table, you feel fully satiated. In the mornings, I drink a hunger crushing berry smoothie with additional fat to make sure I won’t get any hunger pains before lunch time. It works! Slipping some additional fat into a low carbohydrate smoothie keeps me satiated.

Leave the kitchen alone when it isn’t time to eat. Growing up, I would snack a lot. I was hanging out with family and friends in the kitchen and we always had apples and nuts on the counter. I could grab something crunchy and satisfy my sweet tooth, but it wasn’t leading me to better health. When you are done with a meal, leave the kitchen. You don’t need to be tempted by the foods in there.

Your kids won’t see the value in hanging out in the kitchen if you aren’t in there. Make it a goal to reduce the time that you spend cooking your meals. Make them simpler, so you aren’t hanging out around a lot of food.

Use Positive Psychology on Your Kids

My cousin had her baby in Amsterdam. The philosophy of eating over there is far different than in the United States. She continuously told her little girl that she was a good eater. I heard her 4 year old tell me that she was a good eater. At dinner time though, the little girl didn’t particularly want to eat the brussel sprouts. It took longer to get her to eat them, but she eventually did. Part of that was positive psychology on my cousin’s part and disciplining the child to eat whatever the adults were eating.

Make a Plan and Stick With It!

This goes for eating. I have discovered that when I go to the grocery store with an idea of the meals that I want to create that week, I spend less. It takes me less time at the grocery store. Most importantly, I stick with the meals for that week.

Figure out what ketogenic breakfast ideas that your kids like and put them on a menu for the week. Don’t give them options of eating cereal or toast. Eat up whatever carb heavy foods are in the house and then commit to not buying them anymore. The find the entrees that your kids will eat, taco saladsbutternut squash soup, and hamburgers without a bun are mainstays in my house.

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16 thoughts on “Adapting the Keto Diet for Kids”

  1. A very informative article on how you can have children adapt a healthier diet! I’d also never heard of Keto before, so it was really interesting to learn about it. My family and I follow the Paleo diet, which also reduces carbohydrate intake and we all have so much more energy now! Great post, keep them coming.

    1. Paleo is very similar. They both reduce the intake of carbohydrates, which cause inflammation in the body. Here’s to healthy eating! Best wishes!

  2. Excellent article. One of our most important values in our home is eating together. We make an effort to have family sit down time and enjoy a healthy well prepared meal. I was obese as a child, due to constantly snacking, and we are making sure our children stay healthy by not buying snacks or junk food.
    I love the idea of closing the kitchen between meal times, I am definitely guilty of snacking between meals. Closing the kitchen keeps your family healthy, but also enhances to importance of sit down family time.

    1. Thanks for your comment. Yes! I was addicted to snacking. Closing the kitchen for me has left me with a lot of time to accomplish other things! I am not mentally tied down to what should I eat next?!

  3. That nice to hear that keto diet can be good for kids in terms of preventing them from snacking from unhealthy sources. But I believe that there should be balanced diet plan for kids, or for anyone who want to stay fit and healthy. As ketogenic involves almost cut from almost all types of carbs but also high amount of fats, which has potential to stress the liver of the kids rather than positive effect and useful for only short term basis to achieve specific fitness goals like weight loss, or controlling blood sugar level.
    I believe good carbs or complex carbs should be fundamental eating habit for kids, rather than such restricted keto diet until or unless kid is diagnosed with disease like epilepsy or others.
    Wishes )

    1. I appreciate your comment and opinion. I don’t think that an unhealthy diet would heal people with epilepsy, but cause other people to get sick. Just my thoughts.

  4. I’m glad I found this post, my girlfriend was just talking about trying the keto diet. she was turned on to it, by this product call “this crazy wrap thing ” that mentioned using the keto diet along with their product. Your article helped us to understand the benefits along with how overlooked it is, so we just wanted to take the time to thank you

  5. this is very informative ironically we have been discussing a change in diet for our family and ditching all the snacks for healthier living this may be an option

  6. Wow what an interesting website, I had vaguely heard of a Ketogenic diet, but I’ll admit I had no idea what it was about. This has definitely opened my eyes and I will definitely be reading more into this!
    I completely agree with your cousin and her approach to her child eating. My son is 2 and I constantly tell him he is a good eater, even when he doesn’t want to eat his dinner. It means that he doesn’t think of meal times as a battle ground and dread them!
    Great post I will def be bookmarking this site for future reference!

  7. Am on a healthy eating journey due to some food allergies, especially gluten and lactose. One challenge of eating healthy is when you live in a house full of people who think life will come to a standstill if they don’t have pizza every other day! I have a question, is the keto diet only effective for epilepsy or it can be used for other conditions as well? Thanks.

    1. The keto diet is currently being used effectively with Alzheimer’s, Diabetes, ADHD, and weight loss. It is a very healthy diet that focuses on getting your body into fat burning mode. This eliminates the inflammation that carbohydrates tend to cause.

  8. The Keto diet seems like a really good one, I keep hearing good things about it. I didn’t know that carbohydrates created an inflammation. Great post anyway, very useful for kids.

  9. Doing something like changing eating habits in the home is a massive challenge but doing it as a family is the best move in my opinion.

    when my cousin was diagnosed with diabetes her mum and dad changed her diet but never told her siblings so the change was not challenged.

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