Keto Chow Nutrition

Unless you have a rare specific medical condition, no. In fact, you may even find that you need to add more salt.

Interestingly enough, the recommendation that people limit their salt intake isn’t based on good science – much like the recommendation to limit saturated fats and to limit dietary cholesterol. New data and studies show that the most likely problem you’ll encounter from salt consumption is **too little salt**! There’s a lot more data about all of this on these several sites:

Above and beyond all of that, on a keto diet, you need a LOT of sodium. Failure to get sufficient salt will leave you with an electrolyte deficiency commonly referred to as “keto flu” – many people find they feel better supplementing above and beyond the sodium that Keto Chow has.

The really short version is: when your insulin is high it tells your kidneys that they need to hold on to a higher amount of salt than “normal” (sadly, high insulin is now the new “normal”), reducing your need for consuming salt. When your insulin is low, your kidneys do not go through the process of putting as much salt back into your blood (it takes it out regardless and has to put it back in which requires a lot of energy and work) – having higher levels of salt is actually a nice bit of rest for your kidneys when you are on an ultra-low carbohydrate diet.

Kids, along with pregnant/nursing mothers are a touchy subject. Legally the official word is it’s not designed for Children, Pregnant or Breastfeeding women. Is it OK for those groups to use?

The Bair kids (along with many of the kids of our employees, friends, and customers) routinely drink Keto Chow. We find it a bit silly that many people think nothing of feeding their children Mac & Cheese, Doritos, or dinosaur shaped chicken nuggets slathered in sugary ketchup – but somehow, a product that has been painstakingly engineered for nutrition is the one that’s suspect =)

I give it to my kids, if you have any reservations at all, show the nutrition and ingredients to a doctor.

You just need to find a suitable source for 1300mg of Omega 3 fatty acids. Most fish oil pills will advertise boldly how much fish oil they have and you have to look close to find the amount of EPA and DHA. With typical fish oil pills you need 5 a day to get 1300mg. If you want to use a different source of Omega 3 (algal oil, krill oil etc…), look close at the label and do some math.

No, but you can if you like. Many people will do 2 meals of Keto Chow and 1 meal of regular keto friendly food, others only do 1 keto chow a day. Ultimately it’s just another high fat-low carb food (that just happens to be 1/3 of everything you need in a day and terribly convenient). Many people will mix up Keto Chow for a lower calorie amount (1300 calories/50ml of heavy cream) so they can have snacks during the day like string cheese and pork rinds.

First things first: there is some confusion between “Splenda” (that you buy at the grocery store) and pure Sucralose. Splenda uses bulking agents so that you can “measure it like sugar” – typically this will be maltodextrin which is simply a carbohydrate and no good for a Ketogenic or low carb diet. The maltodextrin in store-bought Splenda will absolutely spike your blood sugar. Pure sucralose, on the other hand, will not. Even if it did have an effect on blood sugar, there is simply too little of it to have any effect. In Keto Chow, we use 0.08g per serving. To put that in perspective: that is 1/64 the weight of a US nickel. Even 0.08g of actual sugar will only raise your blood sugar by 0.32mg/dL – essentially no effect.

OK, back to the question of why we use sucralose for many of the sweet flavors of Keto Chow. The short answer is: because stevia doesn’t taste very good to the overwhelming majority of our taste testers. Ultimately, stevia, monkfruit, erythritol, or any other “natural sweeteners” are not magical and cause the same reactions in humans as anything else that’s sweet so why not use the best tasting option? We actually paid a 3rd party to do a blind taste test and they confirmed that Keto Chow with sucralose tastes “more natural” than products using Stevia, Erythritol, or Monk Fruit.

  • Erythritol and Allulose would seem a good choice but they DOUBLE the weight and volume of Keto Chow, instead of 21 meals you’d get 10 for the same price and shipping. That sucks.
  • We do have the “Natural Strawberry” that does use monk fruit instead of sucralose. It costs more to produce and doesn’t taste as good (in my opinion).
  • We have the “Base Powder” version which you combine with your choice of flavored/sweetened protein powder – lets you use whatever you’d like. Want to use egg white protein with Stevia? Go for it! You’ll still get all of the vitamins and minerals you’d normally get with Keto Chow.
  • We have 4 savory soup flavors (you mix them hot!) that do not use any sweetener, because that would be gross.

Allow me to quote Julie from the Sofa King Keto facebook group – she illustrates why we use sucralose really well:

Holy what the hell. Go buy Keto Chow. It is NO joke. I am not a packaged foods kinda gal but needed something to get me back on the Keto track. I was thinking, honestly, “ok, I can choke this down for a couple weeks.” Um. NOT EVEN CLOSE. This shiz is delicious!!! And easy to make! Holy wow!
I bought both the peanut butter chocolate and the raspberry cheesecake. I blended 1/2 c heavy cream and 1/2 cup coconut milk with ice with a scoop of chow. Thick like a milkshake. No weird malt “slim fast” taste.

(Chris here) I personally use Keto Chow for at least 2 meals a day, often 3. I don’t want something that I have to suffer through, I want something so delectable that I’m sad when I run out. I want it to taste so good that I swish it around in my mouth, enjoying the flavor; not plugging my nose and chugging it as fast as possible. And I won’t sell something that’s gross or barely tolerable. It’s gotta be delightful and that’s what you get with sucralose: the best flavor possible. A meal replacement that doesn’t taste AMAZING isn’t helpful in its intended use.

What about the rat studies showing changes in gut bacteria when exposed to sucralose? Humans are not rats. Those rats weren’t consuming acacia gum. Those rats weren’t on a ketogenic diet. Even more important is the DOSE that was being given to the rats. The dosage is usually expressed in mg/Kg or how many milligrams of sucralose were given per Kilogram of body weight. In the US, it was estimated (top of page 3) that most people consume 98mg of sucralose per day resulting in a dose of 1.6mg/Kg. In a recent study to determine the effects of sucralose, the rats were given an average of 80.4 mg/kg. Let’s see how that compares to what *you* would get by consuming Keto Chow:

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The Acceptable Daily Intake (ADI) level for sucralose was set at 5 mg/kg body weight per day (mg/kg/d) (page 10) in the US and 15 mg/kg/d in the EU. So you’d only even be close to that using Keto Chow if you do it 3x a day and weigh 100lbs/45kg.

 

You can view the nutrition information and ingredients for the different flavors of Keto Chow on this page.

As far as allergens go, Keto Chow contains dairy (whey protein), may contain peanuts or traces of peanuts.

Well, you could but it’s probably not a good idea unless you’re not trying to do keto. Keto is HIGH fat, moderate protein, low carb. It is NOT low fat, low carb.

You need calories. If your insulin is low enough (below 14), you can pull around 37 calories from each pound of fat you have per day. If your insulin is high, then you’ll need to use more dietary fat or your metabolism will go down. I never recommend more than a 15% calorie deficit doing Keto Chow unless you’re VERY in-tune with your body and know what you’re doing with months or years of experience doing keto. Water, almond milk, and all the other low-fat and low-calorie stuff out there is exactly that: low fat and low calorie. Keto is all about living off fat.

Embrace the fat. Use heavy cream or avocado oil in your Keto Chow and put butter on your steak.

Most of the flavors of Keto Chow provide around 81g of protein per day. If you’re working out or such, you might need more protein so you’ll want to get more. There are a couple ways to add protein:

  • You can mix additional unflavored or low-carb flavored protein powder into your shakes.
  • You can make some chicken breast and eat it.
  • Or eat some bacon, etc…

The Natural Strawberry user monk fruit as a sweetener

The Savory Chicken Soup does not use any sweetener (because that would be gross =), the base powder also does not use sweetener.

The other flavors of Keto Chow use 0.08g (80mg) of pure sucralose, most commonly known by the brand name Splenda but without any maltodextrin bulking agent like you find in grocery store Splenda. Why? You can read more about Sucralose and it’s benefits and issues here. We don’t use any other artificial sweeteners (Acesulfame Potassium, Aspartame, Saccharin), we also do not use Maltitol or any other sugar alcohol.

In May 2018, Nickel and Boron were removed from the vitamin/mineral formulation of Keto Chow, you’ll find this change on the “Keto Chow Change Log” where we publicly list what we’ve changed in each revision of Keto Chow – the short explanation of why it still shows on the ingredients is: there is a chance people could get one of the old bags somehow and we would rather lose a potential customer than accidentally making someone ill that is legitimately allergic to nickel.

Nickel and Boron both *might* be necessary for good health (see https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK222322/#ddd00690) but there are no clear results that can be looked at for absolute certainty. There are, however, people that are allergic to Nickel, and Boron presents problems as well; so the ultimate decision was to remove both. Because of the potential for allergies, Nickel was left on the Keto Chow ingredients page until ALL of the product we have on-hand has switched to 2.1.2+ we feel it’s better that people who are intellectually sensitive to the presence of Nickel avoid Keto Chow when it doesn’t actually have it, rather than risking someone that is actually sensitive to Nickel being exposed.

We take it very seriously what goes into Keto Chow and work very hard to make sure that we have the best stuff possible (see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2dVKZqYKPxk ). So seriously that the founder of Keto Chow decided to live exclusively on Keto Chow for 100 days, 3 meals a day, mostly to prove a point – when the person formulating a product decides to live on it for several months, you’ll find that any potential problems go away really quickly. Honestly, we wish more companies would try something similar.

As for other heavy metals, we’ve had Keto Chow tested for those too and even posted the results so you can see them for yourself. It’s interesting to note that the flavors containing plant-derived flavors and spices (cinnamon, cocoa, etc…) have the highest levels of heavy metals (though the levels are still insanely low). If you’re concerned about heavy metal exposure, apparently eating plant foods is what you would want to avoid, which would probably surprise those advocating that type of eating pattern.

  • There are fewer (no) carbs in Avocado Oil
  • Heavy (whipping) cream mixes up thicker
  • HWC has a more ‘creamy” mouthfeel
  • the flavor of Keto Chow comes through stronger with avocado oil
  • Avocado Oil does not require refrigeration
  • Avocado oil will not separate when mixed into Keto Chow, there’s no oily slick.
  • HWC has dairy and lactose, avocado oil does not.

So, based on all that, it’s entirely up to you!

Version 1.9 uses Dymatize Elite 100% whey, here’s the amino acid profile for that

The upcoming 2.0 uses pure whey protein isolate, the amino acid profile for that can be found here.

Only 9 of the amino acids are “essential” meaning they can’t be synthesized in the body: phenylalanine, valine, threonine, tryptophan, methionine, leucine, isoleucine, lysine, and histidine. All 9 are in both versions of Keto Chow.

More info here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Essential_amino_acid

Keto Chow does not contain rice or soy protein, both of which tend to have high levels of lead and trigger a Proposition 65 cancer warning. Some flavors of Keto Chow do have plant based spices (like cinnamon and cocoa powder) that contain enough lead to trigger a “reproductive harm” proposition 65 warning (if you consume 1000 times the amount it can cause birth defects) you can get more details about Keto Chow and heavy metal levels on this page.

The only official statement that can legally be given is the disclaimer at the bottom of every page on the Keto Chow site:

The content of this website is not intended for the treatment or prevention of disease, nor as a substitute for medical treatment, nor as an alternative to medical advice. Use of recommendations is at the choice and risk of the reader. If you are on any medication, please consult with your family doctor before starting any new eating plan. Keto Chow is not intended to treat, cure or prevent any disease. Pregnant or breast feeding women should consult their health care professional before consuming.

Take a printout of the nutrition and ingredients to your doctor and have a discussion with them. Not a “you sit there and listen to them” but a discussion and together determine if it will work for you. I know of nothing specific in Keto Chow that would be any more detrimental to mother or child than a typical Keto diet but that’s the real question and the internets are not the place to make a determination. The only issue we have heard reported is: don’t use MCT oil while nursing, not that it is bad – it just tends to make babies mad. There are some amazing resources over on https://www.reddit.com/r/KetoBabies/

Probably, but it’s decidedly not vegan. There are a few ingredients that pose a problem:

  1. Keto Chow contains Vitamin D3 which is derived from lanolin harvested from the coats of sheep which undergoes steps of chemical transformation to create Vitamin D3. Generally, that makes it not considered suitable for a “vegan” diet.
  2. The vitamin K2 contains material derived via fermentation by single-celled microorganisms.
  3. The protein powder comes from dairy.
  4. Depending on where you get your Omega 3s, that usually comes from fish oil (though you can get it from algae oil).

To the best of my knowledge, everything else is vegetarian (though decidedly NOT vegan).

Maybe. I don’t really have a clear answer on this one.

  • All of the ingredients are at least Pareve, except for the Milk Protein which is obviously dairy
    • Protein Powder – Dairy – OUD3-5C9EEBF
    • Acacia Gum – Pareve – OUV3-VF0MR80
    • Choline L-Bitartrate – Parave, Kosher except Passover – SK8XW6BMRI0
    • Cocoa Powder (for those flavors containing Cocoa) – Kosher including Passover – OUW3-2CD9F3C
    • Magnesium Malate – Parve – KFT8V290Q23
    • Potassium Chloride – Pareve – OUW3-F9D118B
    • Potassium Citrate – Pareve – OUW3-H4RSA9C
    • Flavoring – Pareve – OUV3-EAC5BAA
    • Sucralose – Pareve – OUV2-6A7E924
    • Vitamin pre-mix – Pareve – OUV3-DRXBFVB
  • Same story for Halal
So, in the end, it appears to be mostly kosher and halal (except the fish oil capsules which contain gelatin) but I can’t guarantee it is.

Generally, women have a lower Base Metabolic Rate compared to men. If you’re using the keto calculator then you should already have a pretty good idea of how many calories to target. That should be the only change you would need to make. There are some other considerations to look out for on a ketogenic diet as a woman (all those fun monthly cycles and stuff can make progress… weird?). The ladies over at https://www.reddit.com/r/xxketo/ have some really good resources and are super nice and helpful. There’s also https://www.reddit.com/r/KetoBabies/ for pregnant and new mothers doing keto.

Whipping cream can work, it just has a lower fat content. Lower fat content means more lactose (sugar) which will make ketosis more difficult. Half-and-half has an even lower fat content and REALLY a lot of sugar that will likely guarantee you won’t get into ketosis. I only ever use “whipping cream” when I’m traveling and need to use the Trader Joe’s Shelf Stable Whipping Cream.

Here are the calories and carbohydrate content for a 15ml, 1 tablespoon “serving”:

fat %caloriescarbscarbs/400 calories
Skim Milk0.0850.7658.35
2% Milk1.9880.7338.40
Whole Milk3.2590.7231.47
Half-and-half11.5200.6513.13
Light/Table cream19.1290.557.51
Whipping cream30.9440.444.05
Heavy whipping cream36.1510.433.34
Darigold “Classic 4040.0600.402.67
Butter81.11020.010.03

The ironic thing is all of the creams have less than 1g per “serving” so they will often label the package as “0g total carbs” even though the half-and-half has nearly 4x as many carbs per calorie compared to heavy cream. You have to muck around the USDA food database to get the accurate nutrition information.

There are several key differences between 1.5 (the most recent version you can make yourself by buying the ingredients) and 2+. Some are also differences from 1.5 to 1.9.

  • A custom-made vitamin and mineral pre-mix. This replaces several ingredients (the vitamin pill, Calcium Phosphate, Vitamin K, Choline L-Bitartrate, Calcium/Magnesium Citrate, Vitamin D3) there’s also more Magnesium. Other vitamins and minerals have also been adjusted up above minimum levels to optimal levels along with optimal forms for bioavailability.
  • Additional Potassium to comply with the new US dietary requirements.
  • Better Magnesium source that makes is a lot easier on digestion.
  • Protein Isolate which has significantly lower carbohydrates compared to the concentrate/isolate/hydrolyzed protein blend used in 0.7-1.9. Most flavors are only 0.56g net carbs before adding any heavy cream.
  • Custom made flavors – earlier versions used off-the-shelf protein powder with flavoring, using our own makes the flavors more stable and lowers the cost.
  • Eliminated 2 sweeteners: AceK and Stevia
  • Mixed and packaged in a different facility – all of the flavors except Chocolate Peanut Butter are now completely peanut free and safe for people with peanut allergies.

It’s a bit of an involved subject but the short version is: we don’t recommend having a caloric deficit higher than 15% off your BMR. So if you need 1875 calories a day, get at least 85% of that from food (1593 calories). If you go lower than that, you risk crashing your metabolism and going into starvation mode. Our bodies are smart and know to reduce output when faced with too large of a deficit.

If you do a deep dive into the science of it you’ll also run into issues where people will have high fasting insulin which keeps fat cells from releasing energy, even if the person has low glucose levels, thus you end up with no glucose, no fat, and no ketones to run your cells and everything slows down.

Soy is a funny thing. There’s a lot of “well I heard it from a dude at the gym that soy gives you cancer” information running around. There is very, very little scientific information based on studies to back up the concerns about phytoestrogens in soy protein causing problems in vivo with humans. Regardless: Keto Chow does not use any soy protein (which is the problem-child and what people can be allergic to). It does contain soy lecithin that is used as part of the whey protein concentration process. It’s unavoidable if you use whey protein. I’d prefer NOT to have it included just so I could avoid having to answer the inevitable questions/complaints about soy. Regardless, to quote the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Soy lecithin, extracted from soy-bean oil, is often used in numerous foods, like chocolate, to help keep ingredients emulsified. Many food labels will list a soy-based emulsifier like lecithin. The amounts are generally minute and don’t contribute a substantial level of phytoestrogens. Products with soy lecithin do not need to be avoided because they have such minor amounts.

The aim of Keto Chow is to be nutritionally complete keto food with 1/3 of ALL your nutritional requirements in each meal (electrolytes, protein, fat, vitamins, fiber, ALL of it).

Keto//OS is a mixture with exogenous ketones – you drink it and you will have ketones in your body regardless of whether you are actually in nutritional ketosis or not. For people doing ketosis to treat a disease like epilepsy, cancer, or Alzheimer’s; or for people doing elite level athletics who need quick energy but don’t want to break ketosis – exogenous ketones can be very useful. For many people, they’re of limited use. You’re not “in ketosis” unless your body is producing ketones its self. On top of that, if you do want to use exogenous ketones I would recommend checking out Perfect Keto or one of the other products that are not sold via Multi-Level Marketing.

If you’re curious, I’ve compiled a comparison of the various Keto “Meal Replacement” products available: https://www.reddit.com/r/keto/comments/6wjthf/comparison_of_keto_meal_replacement_options_costs/

Keto Chow is at the top with a cost around $11 per 2000 calories, Keto//OS is at the very bottom at $250.00 for 2000 calories.

There is a more in-depth analysis of the different option on https://www.ketochow.xyz/2018/10/comparison-of-keto-meal-replacement-nutrition-costs-net-carbs-fat-and-more/

Keto Chow does not contain Resistant Starch (which is interesting for a ketogenic diet but many of the benefits are met by the Acacia Gum that’s in Keto Chow).

Keto Chow has been certified as gluten-free.

With wheat being anathema to ketosis, nothing in the mixture has any wheat in it (or corn, or rice, or any carb source). All of the ingredients used in Keto Chow are certified gluten-free and the facility we use for packaging is gluten-free as well.

Nope. It’s all artificial flavoring – think Banana Runts.

  • Only the Mocha flavor of Keto Chow contains added caffeine (95mg), it also contains instant coffee powder and cocoa powder. In total there is approximately 110mg of caffeine per serving in the Mocha Keto Chow.
  • The Chocolate and Chocolate Peanut Butter flavors have 4g of cocoa powder in each serving. At 2.3mg of caffeine per gram of cocoa, there is approximately 9.2mg of caffeine per serving in the Chocolate and in the Chocolate Peanut Butter Keto Chow.
  • The Chocolate Mint flavor has 1.5g of cocoa powder in each serving. At 2.3mg of caffeine per gram of cocoa, there is approximately 3.45mg of caffeine per serving in the Chocolate and in the Chocolate Peanut Butter Keto Chow.

No other flavors of Keto Chow contain ingredients with caffeine. The Chocolate Toffee does not have any cocoa powder.

The calories in each meal depend on how much heavy cream you use.  79ml (or 1/3 cup) of heavy cream will give you 433 calories (1300 a day); 148ml yields  667 calories (2000 a day). Check out the “Custom Calorie Calculator” (green button) on our preparation instructions page.

Keto Chow versions before 2.0 (1.0, 1.04, 1.5, 1.9) are mixed on the same machine that we use for mixing the Chocolate Peanut Butter flavor – we thoroughly clean the machine after mixing and in particular after mixing peanuts but if you are severely allergic to peanuts then you may be at risk of residue causing complications.

Keto Chow 2.0 and on is mixed in a peanut-free facility. We actually have to mix and package the Chocolate Peanut Butter flavor in a different plant several miles away to avoid contamination. Any version above and including 2.0 should be fine for peanut allergy sufferers (except for the Chocolate Peanut Butter flavor).

The protein used in Keto Chow is milk protein isolate. If you have an issue with Lactose, you will most likely not have any issues at all. If, however, you are allergic to milk proteins (casein and whey) you would need to use the Base Powder version along with a suitable non-dairy protein. For the fat source refer to Are there alternatives to the Heavy Cream? What if I am lactose intolerant? Can Keto Chow be dairy-free?

The best available option we have for this is the Keto Chow Base Powder – it includes all of the ingredients EXCEPT for the flavor/protein/sweetener. This allows you to use a protein powder of your choosing, it also costs a lot less to ship since it’s 1/6 the size of a full week.

Keto Chow is a powdered drink mix. When combined with oil, heavy cream and water it creates a meal replacement that is nutritionally complete; meaning if you would like to, you can live off it all day, every day. The powder is made from flavored protein, fiber, electrolytes, minerals, vitamins and other nutrients. People usually liken it to a “melted milk shake” though you can go full on “frosty” by blending it in a blender with ice.

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