Keto vs Vegan – The Two Diets Compared and Explained

By HumanWindow
Updated on 31 May 2019

If you’re wondering about the differences and similarities of Keto and Vegan diets, then you’ve landed on the right page.

There are so many different types of diets around these days that it can quickly become confusing as to which one if the best one for you.

Experts say that the best diet is the one you can stick with – so where does that leave Keto and Vegan?

In this article, we’re going to take a close look at both of these popular diets to see how they are different and similar.

We’re going to break this article up into the following sections:

• What is the Keto Diet?
• What is the Vegan Diet?
• Keto vs Vegan
• Keto and Vegan Differences
• Keto and Vegan Similarities
• Keto vs Vegan for Weight Loss
• Anything Else to Consider?
• Wrapping Things Up – Final Thoughts

So, now that we have the introductions out of the way, it’s time to start taking a closer look at both of these popular diets in a bit more detail.

What is the Keto Diet?

Keto diet foods

Some common Keto diet-friendly foods (Photo: Adobe Stock)

The Keto Diet is a very low carb and high fat diet which has become more popular in recent years.

In case you didn’t know, ‘Keto’ stands for Ketogenic. The general thinking behind the diet is that sticking to it puts your body into a state of ‘ketosis’, which is basically when it works on burning fat instead of glucose for energy.

It places particular emphasis on rich sources of fat such as Avocado and Dairy, and it excludes many fruits, vegetables and grains. It also excludes Sugar.

The basic fundamentals of the Keto diet involve reducing Carbohydrate intake and increasing fat intake, with Protein usually making up around 20%-30% of the diet.

Here is an example macronutrient breakdown for the Keto diet:

• Fat: 60%–80%
• Protein: 20%–30%
• Carbohydrates: 5%–10%

As you can see for yourself, the Keto Diet requires you to count macronutrient intake and carefully stick to certain foods. This may not be suitable for everyone.

Additionally, it’s important to seek medical advice before embarking on the Keto Diet. It can involve some quite drastic lifestyle changes and therefore it may not be suitable for everyone.

So, to summarize, the Keto Diet is a type of low-carb, high fat diet that has been put together to help encourage your body to use fat as an energy source.

What is the Vegan Diet?


Vegan diets have become popular in recent years (Photo: Adobe Stock)

The Vegan Diet is a diet which excludes all animal derived ingredients.

Also known as a plant-based diet, because its ingredients come from plants and not from animal sources.

A Vegan Diet excludes meat, eggs, dairy products and all other animal-derived ingredients.

The Vegan diet is generally rich in whole foods such as fruits, vegetables and grains.

More broadly, the term ‘Vegan’ can also apply to lifestyle choices. For example, somebody who identifies as a ‘Vegan’ may choose not to use any type of animal derived product – not just food. This could mean excluding leather products and some household products.

There are no set macro or micronutrient intakes for the Vegan diet. That being said, the Vegan diet tends to be lower in fat and protein and higher in carbohydrates.

The only strict rule when it comes to the Vegan diet is not consuming food from animal sources, so there is quite a wide variation of how this diet could be implemented.

Keto vs Vegan

Now that we’ve taken a closer look at the basic points of both of these diets, it’s time to compare Keto to Vegan.

As we mentioned above, the Ketogenic Diet is a high fat, low carb and moderate protein diet. You’ll need to be focusing on your macronutrient intake if you want to stick to this diet strictly.

On the other hand, the Vegan Diet is a diet which excludes all animal-derived products, including meat, eggs, dairy products and more.

The Ketogenic diet is usually more commonly used by people looking to achieve weight loss. That’s not to say that it works for everyone, however.

Starting on the Keto diet is also usually more of a drastic dietary change for most people. The fact that you have to count macronutrient intake as well as excluding certain food types may be difficult for some people.

For this reason, it the Keto Diet is generally regarded as being more difficult to follow than a Vegan diet.

That being said, cutting out all dairy products, meat and fish as part of a Vegan diet can also be challenging for some people.

Broadly speaking, the Vegan diet is regarded as more of a lifestyle choice because of benefits to the planet and the environment – but that’s not to say that following it doesn’t bring health benefits too.

Keto and Vegan Differences

Let’s now take a look at some of the main differences between Keto and Vegan.

Firstly, if you’re following the Keto Diet strictly, you’ll have to monitor and restrict your macronutrient intake.

As the Keto Diet is an extremely low carb diet (carbs should be 5-10% of total consumption), you’ll have to keep a close eye on what you’re eating. The Vegan diet, on the other hand, requires no such macronutrient counting. It simply requires that you exclude all animal derived products from your diet.

Generally speaking, people choose to follow the Ketogenic diet to help with weight loss and other supposed health benefits.

This is not always the case with the Vegan diet, which is often more of a broader lifestyle decision. As we mentioned above, many people choose to follow a Vegan diet because of the environmental benefits for the planet and animals.

Keto and Vegan Similarities

These two diets are not all completely different – here are some of the similarities between Keto and Vegan.

The first thing to note is that both of these diets generally promote consuming whole foods. For example, you could eat Avocados, nuts and seeds quite comfortably on both Keto and Vegan diets.

Although not strictly, both of these diets also recommend avoiding ultra-processed foods and replacing them with healthy whole food sources.

Sticking to a diet with fresh fruits and vegetables is important to your overall health

Sticking to a diet with fresh fruits and vegetables is important to your overall health (Photo: Adobe Stock)

Avoiding highly processed foods and sticking to fruits, vegetables and nuts and seeds is likely to be beneficial to your overall health.

Keto vs Vegan for Weight Loss

As we mentioned above, people may turn to both Keto and Vegan diets as a way to achieve weight loss.

The theory behind the Ketogenic diet is that by encouraging your body to use fat as an energy source, it will more readily turn to body fat as a source of energy when there is no glucose available.

The Vegan diet could help to promote weight loss, but it’s important to remember that you could still stay Vegan but follow an unhealthy diet full of sugar and processed foods.

Despite the various claims and hype about both of these diets, there is not a huge amount of scientific evidence to suggest that they will specifically work for weight loss.

As always, the important thing to remember is that a health regime in which you burn more calories than you’re consuming is the main self-treatment for achieving fat loss.

Anything Else to Consider?

It’s really important to speak to a certified medical professional before thinking about trying a Vegan or Keto diet.

In particular, the Keto diet can be quite drastic and cause some unwanted effects if not adopted in the correct and proper way.

Generally speaking, it’s better to make across-the-board lifestyle changes with the goal of improving your health overall, rather than looking for a quick fix such as weight loss.

And it’s always better to speak to an expert before starting, so that you can make sure that you’re doing things correctly and in a way that will not risk your health.

Wrapping Things Up – Final Thoughts

The brings us to the end of our in-depth look at the Keto and Vegan diets.

We’ve taken a close look at both of these popular diets, explaining how Keto is a high-fat, moderate protein and low-carb diet.

A Vegan diet, on the other hand, excludes all animal derived ingredients and instead focused on a plant-based diet.

Generally speaking, the Keto diet is more regularly followed by people who are looking to lose weight, while the Vegan diet is often seen as more of an overall lifestyle choice.

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