Are Olives Keto-Friendly?

The ketogenic diet is based on foods that are high in fat and low in carbs. The proportion of protein in the diet remains moderate, while the main thing is to limit carbohydrates. It is fats that serve as the primary source of energy. After consuming glycogen stores, the body uses fat stores for energy. Ketone bodies, formed from fats, replace carbs in your energy system. What are the best keto snacks?

Are olives keto, and are they suitable for the high-fat, low-carb diet? Definitely yes. Avocados, olives, and nuts on a keto diet are excellent sources of unsaturated fat. Consuming them stimulates lipolysis and helps you lose weight.

What’s more, olives are great for your health. In this article, we will tell you all about the benefits of olives for the keto diet.

Are Olives Keto?

100 grams of olives (depending on the type) contain:

  • 115-142 calories
  • 0.8 grams of protein
  • 11 grams of fat
  • 6 grams of carbohydrates
  • 4 grams of fiber
  • 2 grams of net carbs.

So yes, olives are keto, and you can add them to your daily low-carb menu.

Benefits of Olives and Olive Oil

There are almost no carbs in olives, but they contain many valuable substances. They have nearly all the vitamins and microelements necessary for the human body. The most beneficial vitamins are A, B1, B2, B3, B4, B5, B6, B9 (folic acid), C, E, and K. Olives also contain sodium, calcium, potassium, and magnesium, iron, phosphorus, copper, zinc, and selenium.

The pulp of the fruit contains up to 80% of a non-drying oil. Olive oil contains unsaturated fatty acids unique in their properties. The most beneficial are oleic (75%), linoleic (13%), and linolenic (0.55%). Unlike animal fats, olives bring considerable benefit to the body. 

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They prevent the development of atherosclerosis, heart and vascular diseases. Olives do not contain and promote the removal of cholesterol and have a beneficial effect on the digestive organs.

In conditions of poor ecology, it is essential to eat natural olives. After all, they contain pectins, which contribute to eliminating toxic substances from the body. Olives can also remove salts of heavy metals. Pectins also improve the intestinal microflora and help to cope with chronic constipation.

What Vitamins and Minerals Do Olives Contain?

Vitamin B

Olives are rich in B vitamins, which help promote metabolic processes and improve skin and hair conditions. They promote the functioning of the brain, nervous and cardiovascular systems and normalize liver function. B vitamins increase the body’s tone and participate in many other vital processes.

Vitamins C and E

Vitamins C and E prevent various malfunctions in the body. They are antioxidants that reduce the risk of developing cancer. Besides, olives have a healing effect on the joint tissue due to these vitamins. Sore joints accumulate free radicals. The antioxidant effects of vitamins C and E help to eliminate these pathological processes.

Provitamin A

Beta-carotene (provitamin A) is a naturally powerful antioxidant found in olives. This element protects the body from the harmful effects of carcinogens. Beta-carotene prevents cancer development in the colon, esophagus, larynx, stomach, and prostate. 

It protects the lungs of smokers from the development of tumors. In addition, it is needed for good vision, growth, and tissue repair. Provitamin A supports the epithelium, smoothes wrinkles, heals the skin, and strengthens teeth and bones.

Minerals and Other Elements

The minerals in olives protect the heart and blood vessels from overload, increase hemoglobin in the blood, and help strengthen bone tissue. For example, the calcium found in olives is essential for maintaining bone tissue, which is involved in the formation of joints. 

And the presence of manganese helps regulate muscle tone and maintains the normal functioning of connective tissue. It is also necessary for the restoration of articular cartilage cells.

Lutein found in olives is a powerful antioxidant. It destroys free radicals, protects cells from early aging, strengthens the retina, and increases optical density. Olives contain polyphenols (flavonoids), which are antioxidant substances. 

They prevent the oxidation of lipoproteins, which, when oxidized, form plaques in the arteries. Thus, the polyphenols found in natural olives reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

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Eating olives every day promotes conception, having a normalizing effect on the female reproductive system. In addition, olives have a beneficial impact on gout, arthritis, osteochondrosis, and other muscular and skeletal systems diseases.

The elements found in olives strengthen cell and mucous membranes. They have a beneficial effect on the pancreas, stomach, liver, and cardiovascular system. Most importantly, olives help with better wound healing and cleanse the body of toxins. Eating olives, which contain less salt, prevent the development of stomach ulcers. 

Adding a couple of olives to your daily nutrition is an excellent prevention of tartar and calculi formation in various organs (for example, gall bladder, bile ducts, and kidneys). By the way, olives also inhibit the formation of gallstones and stimulate bile secretion.

How to Add Olives to Your Keto Diet?

As you know, people usually consume edible coconut oil for the keto diet. However, you should not ignore keto olive oil. About 75% of the fats in olives are monounsaturated, meaning they lower blood cholesterol and are good for the heart.

In addition, you can “play” with olive oil in the kitchen, changing the recipes and ingredients. 

The aroma and taste may differ depending on the method of pressing or adding various seeds or herbs. My favorite choice is olive oil with basil and garlic. It is excellent with cheese and eggs for a high-fat breakfast.

Besides, you can also add olives to salads and keto-baked foods or make a great snack with cheese, olives, and tomatoes. This snack will be completely keto. It will help satisfy hunger on the trip when there is much time left before a full meal. By the way, olives are a great source of fat if you follow a vegan keto diet.

How Many Olives Should I Eat a Day?

When you’re on a keto diet, you don’t have to worry about excess fat as you do on low-fat diets. Therefore, olives can be a healthy part of your daily menu. They are a great addition to your electrolyte supply, which you lose through exercise and fluid loss. However, despite the benefits of olives and high content of nutrients, too much can be dangerous for your health for several reasons:

  • olives contain a lot of salt, which can be dangerous for those with high blood pressure;
  • they are high in sodium, which can lead to kidney stones if consumed in excess;
  • olives are high in calories (about 130 calories per 100 grams) and can hurt your weight loss if that’s your goal on a keto diet.

For olives to benefit your health and not provoke side effects, you can eat about 2-3 ounces daily. It is about 8-12 large olives, 15-20 medium-sized olives, or 20-30 small olives per day.

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As you can see, keto olives and olive oil have many benefits for diet nutrition, as they saturate your body with healthy vitamins and elements. However, all these valuable properties are retained only by olives prepared traditionally – in brine or oil, without harmful substances.

Try to add them to your keto diet and enjoy!


Ana Rinkevich is a writer specializing in health, nutrition, fitness, and weight loss. Over the past 10 years, she has used various methods to deal with obesity, metabolic syndrome, and eating disorders. Proud keto follower for 6 years - lost 100 pounds and fought insulin resistance. Ana shares her experience, tips, and motivation to help people use eating habits for better health and harmony with the body.