Can you eat potatoes on the keto diet?

Most people are fans of potatoes in some form. Whether mashed, baked, or cut into french fries, this starchy vegetable has long been a staple of diets worldwide. But what if you're following the keto diet? Are potatoes allowed, and if so, how often?

The keto diet is a unique kind of eating plan. It calls for very high intake of fats — up to 85 percent of daily calories, according to Healthline — and fewer than 50 grams of carbohydrates per day. The goal is to shift the body into a state called ketosis, during which it burns stored fat for energy.

A medium potato packs 37 grams of carbohydrates, according to VerywellFit, so consuming just one will put you close to your daily goal on the keto diet. That being said, potatoes are rich in some nutrients that might be missing from your diet if you're eating keto. They're high in fiber, potassium, and vitamin C, and a medium-sized potato is just 168 calories.

What about sweet potatoes?

The white potato's cousin, the sweet potato, is always another choice. One medium sweet potato has 27 grams of carbs, according to Women's Health, so it will save you a few carbs. And people eating a keto diet are generally concerned with net carbs rather than total carbs. That's the number you get when you subtract fiber and sugar alcohol from the number of carbs. The idea is that your body can't absorb those anyway so they don't need to be counted. Subtracting the fiber content from a sweet potato brings it down to 24 grams of carbs, while white potatoes are still at 33 grams.

Of course, the option is always there to just eat half a potato or a few fries, so you still get to enjoy your favorite foods while staying in ketosis. Or, consider substituting something else that closely approximates a potato. According to Delish, both cauliflower and celery root can be a good way to get the feel and taste of potatoes without all the added carbs.