Keto 2.0 is here. What is it? Experts say this modified keto diet is not nearly as restrictive as the original version.

The ketogenic diet is notoriously tough to stick with and, as a result, many people who were once all-in with the low-carb eating plan have stopped following it. But not everyone who was once big into keto wants to completely cut ties with it—they just want something that’s a little more approachable. Enter keto 2.0.

So what is keto 2.0 and why are so many people into it? And is it even keto if the diet is tweaked?

Here’s what the dietitians say about this new twist on the keto diet:

What is Keto 2.0?

Scott Keatley, R.D., of Keatley Medical Nutrition Therapy explains:

  • The original version of Keto is an ultra low-carb diet that focuses on increasing your fat intake to the point where your body uses fat for energy.
  • That usually means you strive to get 60 to 75% of your calories from fat, 15 to 30% of your calories from protein, and 5 to 10% of your calories from carbohydrates.
  • The goal is to go into a state of ketosis, where your body doesn’t have enough carbs to use as energy, so it starts burning through fat instead.
  • At this point, that breakdown of fat also produces compounds called ketones.
  • This high fat intake is also highly satiating, so people who follow keto to lose weight are able to do so without feeling hungry.

Keto 2.0 takes a More Laidback Approach

  • There are no “rules” with this modified version of keto.
  • One dietitian points out that keto 2.0 followers would generally try to get 50% of their calories from fat, 30% of their calories from protein, and 20% of their calories from carbs.
  • As a result, you could double your carb intake.

There’s another huge aspect of keto 2.0 that needs mentioning: If you increase your carb intake to 20% of your calories, it would no longer be considered a ketogenic diet, because “it’s impossible to reach ketosis anymore,” says Karen Ansel, R.D.N., co-author of Healthy in a Hurry.

What Foods Can You Eat On Keto 2.0?

As with regular keto, you can technically eat anything you like within the parameters of the diet, but things like sugar, fruits, beans, legumes, and grains are typically severely limited.

A huge issue many nutrition pros have with keto is that it tends to pack in a lot of saturated fats or, at least, many people fall into the trap of eating lots of foods loaded with saturated fats, like bacon and butter. While these foods can ~technically~ help you lose weight on keto when you stay within your macros, they’re not exactly great for your heart health or overall well-being.

But keto 2.0 seems to be big on achieving a well-rounded diet, with more fruits, vegetables, and leaner proteins thrown into the mix.

This new variation gives you more wiggle room for them, along with healthier, complex carbs like beans and oats.

Another big perk is that you’ll get more fiber in your diet on keto 2.0. Fiber can help keep you satiated, lower your disease risk, and improve overall digestion.

Is Keto 2.0 Healthy?

Karen Ansel, R.D.N. evaluates this variation as “definitely healthier than traditional keto, given that it focuses on eating more heart-healthy unsaturated fats, leaner proteins, and more plant-based foods high in nutrients.

Keatley says that “It is much more similar to the traditional Mediterranean diet than a keto diet and that’s a good thing. Most experts agree that the Mediterranean way of eating can improve overall health. By incorporating more lean proteins, especially fish and shellfish, as well as more fruits and vegetables, you’re increasing nutrient diversity which is the key to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Can Keto Version #2 Help You Lose Weight?

According to the experts:

  • If you do it right, yes.
  • It’s not that carbs are bad. It’s that we as Americans are consuming too many high-calorie carbs such as potatoes, bananas, rice, pasta, and other refined grains.
  • Shifting the keto diet away from fat and towards non-starchy fruits and vegetables is a great way to improve fiber intake, which can help you feel fuller longer, improve gut health, and help prevent some cancers.
  • Add naturally lean meats like fish and shellfish to the diet and you’ve got a recipe for healthy weight loss.
  • Just keep in mind that you might not drop weight as drastically as you would on the original keto diet, given that you’re not going into ketosis with a higher carb intake
  • But, if you weren’t on the healthiest of diets before trying keto 2.0, it can definitely make a difference in the number on the scale.

Should You Try the New Keto?

It’s ultimately up to you, but experts believe this is a healthier approach. Yet there are still healthier, more sustainable diets out there. For example, Ansel says that “The Mediterranean or flexitarian diets are much better bets.”

Ultimately, the best diet for you is the one you will actually enjoy and stick with consistently—that way, you make a lifestyle change that is actually sustainable.

Click here to read about the new Keto variation.