Are you following a keto diet and wondering if teff flour is a viable option for your baking needs?
While teff is a nutritious grain that offers many health benefits, it may not be the best choice for those on a keto diet.
Teff flour is high in carbs, which can quickly kick you out of ketosis even with a small serving size.
In this article, we’ll explore the carb content of teff flour and compare it to other keto-friendly flour substitutes.
We’ll also delve into the health benefits of teff and how it can support stable blood sugar levels.
So, let’s dive in and find out if teff flour is keto-friendly!
Is Teff Flour Keto?
Unfortunately, teff flour is not considered keto-friendly due to its high carb content. One quarter cup of teff flour contains 27 grams of carbs, which is well over the daily limit for those following a keto diet.
Consuming even a small amount of teff flour can quickly kick you out of ketosis, making it unsuitable for those looking to maintain a state of ketosis.
While teff flour does offer some nutritional benefits, such as being high in fiber and providing a daily requirement of manganese, it is not a viable option for those on a keto diet.
What Is Teff Flour?
Teff flour is a gluten-free flour made from the ancient grain, teff. Teff is a cereal grain that originated in Ethiopia and Eritrea and is the staple grain in their cuisines. The grain is about the size of a poppy seed and comes in a variety of colors, including white, red, and dark brown. Teff flour is typically dark brown in color and has a mild, earthy flavor.
Teff flour is commonly used in Ethiopian cuisine to make injera, a traditional flatbread. It can also be used to make quick breads, muffins, pancakes, and cookies. Teff flour works well in combination with other gluten-free flours like buckwheat flour and almond flour.
While teff flour does contain some nutritional benefits, such as being high in fiber, protein, iron, amino acids, vitamin C, and calcium, it is not considered keto-friendly due to its high carb content. One quarter cup of teff flour contains 27 grams of carbs, which is well over the daily limit for those following a keto diet.
Teff Flour Nutrition Facts
Teff flour is a highly nutritious option for those who are not following a keto diet. A 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving of teff flour contains 366 calories, 12.2 grams of protein, 3.7 grams of fat, 70.7 grams of carbs, and 12.2 grams of fiber. It is also an excellent source of iron, providing 37% of the daily value (DV), and calcium, providing 11% of the DV.
Teff flour is a good source of copper, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, manganese, zinc, and selenium when compared to other grains. Additionally, it contains all the essential amino acids required by the body for protein synthesis, with particularly high levels of lysine. This amino acid is essential for the production of hormones, enzymes, collagen, and elastin in the body and supports calcium absorption, energy production, and immune function.
However, teff flour may contain antinutrients like phytic acid that can reduce the absorption of some nutrients. To reduce these effects, lacto-fermentation can be used to break down sugars and some phytic acid.
It’s important to note that the nutritional composition of teff flour can vary depending on the variety used to make the flour. A 1/4 cup serving of teff flour contains 22 grams of carbs, 4 grams of protein, 1 gram of fat, and 4 grams of fiber.
While teff flour offers several nutritional benefits, it is not recommended for those following a keto diet due to its high carb content. It’s best to look for alternative grain products that are low in net carbs if you’re on a keto diet.
Teff Flour And The Keto Diet
The keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet that aims to put the body in a state of ketosis, where it burns fat for energy instead of glucose from carbohydrates. As such, it is important to limit carb intake to 20-30g per day to stay in ketosis. Unfortunately, teff flour is not a good choice for those on the keto diet due to its high carb content.
One quarter cup of teff flour contains 27 grams of carbs, which is well over the daily limit for those on a keto diet. This means that consuming even a small amount of teff flour can quickly kick you out of ketosis, making it unsuitable for those looking to maintain a state of ketosis.
While teff flour does offer some nutritional benefits, such as being high in fiber and providing a daily requirement of manganese, it is not a viable option for those on the keto diet. Instead, those on the keto diet should look for low-carb alternatives such as almond flour, coconut flour, or flaxseed meal.
It is important to note that while the keto diet can be helpful for weight loss and other health goals, it is not the only way to achieve these goals. For some individuals, teff may still be a good choice for weight loss or other health goals even if it increases carb intake too much to stay in ketosis. However, for those committed to maintaining a state of ketosis, teff flour should be avoided.
Keto-Friendly Flour Substitutes
Fortunately, there are several keto-friendly flour substitutes that can be used in place of teff flour. One of the most popular options is almond flour, which is made from crushed almonds and contains only 3 grams of total carbs and 1 gram of net carbs per 2-tablespoon serving. Almond flour can be used as a 1-to-1 substitute for wheat flour in baking, but baked goods made with almond flour may have a slightly spongy texture.
Another option is sunflower seed flour, which is made by grinding up sunflower seeds and contains just 5.7 grams of carbs and 7.7 grams of protein per 1/4 cup. Sunflower seed flour is an excellent choice for those with nut allergies and can be easily made at home using a food processor.
When substituting keto flours for teff flour, it’s important to keep in mind that not all keto flours can be substituted for each other on a 1-to-1 basis. Flours with different protein and fiber content require different amounts of liquid and eggs, and flours with higher protein content may require more eggs than those with high fiber content.
A good rule of thumb when substituting keto flours for teff flour is to use a ratio of 2:1 – two parts keto flour to one part teff flour. This ratio may vary depending on the recipe and the specific keto flour being used, so it’s important to experiment and adjust as needed.
Health Benefits Of Teff Flour
Despite not being suitable for a keto diet, teff flour does offer a range of health benefits.
Firstly, teff flour is abundant in essential amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins. In fact, it has more essential amino acids than barley and wheat. These amino acids are crucial for maintaining and repairing muscle tissue, as well as supporting the immune system.
Teff flour is also a good source of minerals, with the highest calcium and iron content compared to other cereals. Calcium is essential for strong bones and teeth, while iron is important for healthy blood and energy levels.
In addition to its mineral content, teff flour is high in dietary fiber, which is important for healthy digestion. Fiber helps to regulate bowel movements, reduce constipation and bloating, and may even lower cholesterol levels.
Furthermore, teff flour contains manganese, a mineral that has been shown to help prevent high blood sugar levels that can contribute to diabetes. Manganese also plays a role in bone development and wound healing.
Teff Flour For Stable Blood Sugar Levels
Despite not being suitable for a keto diet, teff flour can still provide some health benefits. One of the most significant benefits is its ability to promote stable blood sugar levels.
Teff flour is a low carbohydrate, high protein food that helps to slow the release of insulin into the bloodstream. This helps to prevent spikes in blood sugar levels, which can be harmful to those with diabetes or at risk of developing it.
In fact, research has shown that teff flour can help prevent high blood sugar levels that contribute to diabetes. This is due to its low glycemic index and its content of essential amino acids and fatty acids, as well as balanced minerals, vitamins, and their precursors.
Maintaining stable blood sugar levels is not only important for those with diabetes but also for overall health. It promotes balanced hormones, healthy brain chemistry, and great energy levels.
To incorporate teff flour into your diet for its blood sugar stabilizing benefits, it can be substituted for wheat flour in recipes that do not require gluten. It can also be cooked by simmering one cup of uncooked teff in three cups of water or broth until the liquid is absorbed.