Certified Keto Safe Product Standards


The purpose of Keto Safe Standards is to answer the question: What makes a product Keto Safe? A product must meet all of the following standards to qualify as Certified Keto Safe.

Standard #1: Eight Percent or Less of Total Calories from Net Carbohydrates.

Net carbohydrates are total carbohydrates minus fiber and sugar alcohols, there are some fiber and sugar alcohol exceptions that we address in Standard #4. We use percent of total calories from net carbohydrates instead of net carbohydrates per serving because serving sizes vary considerably and are more susceptible to manipulation by setting unrealistically small serving sizes.

Products that are high in fat also score better on this standard because fat is more calorie dense at 9 calories per gram compared to carbohydrate and protein at 4 calories per gram.

Standard #2: Six Percent or Less of Total Calories from Naturally Occurring Sugars.

Naturally occurring sugars come along with some of our favorite keto friendly ingredients like coconut, almonds, macadamia nuts, tomatoes, cocoa powder, and lemons. Removing all naturally occurring sugars would make the ketogenic diet significantly less tasty, but sugars are typically high on the glycemic index, meaning they cause a sharper rise in blood glucose, which we want to limit.

This standard strikes a balance by allowing room for ingredients with naturally occurring sugars while restricting them to less than the allowable 8% of total calories from net carbohydrates.

Standard #3: No Added Sugars.

While budgeting for naturally occurring sugars allows for the addition of a wide variety of keto friendly and nutritious ingredients, there is really no reason to accept added sugars. Especially with the availability of zero glycemic index sweeteners like Stevia, Monk Fruit, Chicory Root Fiber, Erythritol, and Allulose.

Added sugars come in many different forms including Maltodextrin, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Agave Nectar, and Dextrose. Scanning a products list of ingredients for added sugars can be quite the investigation, but you can rest assured any Certified Keto Safe products will not contain any.

Standard #4: No Hidden Carbohydrates.

When calculating net carbohydrates by taking total carbohydrates and subtracting fiber and sugar alcohols, you still have to watch out for certain fibers and sugar alcohols that function similarly to net carbohydrates in the body.

If an ingredient that is classified as a fiber or sugar alcohol and has a verified glycemic index above 5 and is partially digestible (at or above 1 calorie per gram), we currently consider it a hidden carbohydrate. As we identify these ingredients and their various labels, we’ll add them to our list of hidden carbohydrates.

Products that contain these ingredients will not qualify as Certified Keto Safe. We choose to exclude these ingredients because there are viable alternatives available, they add unnecessary confusion for ketogenic dieters, and in some cases can significantly increase the glycemic response of a product.

Current List of Hidden Carbohydrates:

Sugar Alcohols:


  • Isomalto-Oligosaccharides [10]

  • Soluble Corn Fiber [10][11][12] (Maltodextrin, Resistant Maltodextrin, Corn Dextrin, Corn Syrup Solids, Corn Syrup)

  • Dextrin [13][14][15][16] (Soluble Dextrin Fiber, Corn Dextrin, Wheat Dextrin, Tapioca Dextrin)


  1. These standards are not for medical purposes. If you’re being prescribed a ketogenic diet as a treatment for a medical condition, consult your doctor before making any changes. For diabetes or other medical conditions and treatments please see a doctor.

  2. Remember you still need to keep track of your total daily net carbohydrate intake and there are many other factors that are unique to you that affect your net carbohydrate limits including your activity level, lean muscle mass, metabolic health, meal composition, and individual goals.

  3. All Keto Safe Standards are subject to change and addition as new data, research, and insights become available.

  4. Certified Keto Safe Standards are Keto Safe © Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved.


  1. Livesy Study: (Glycemic Index and Energy Values of Maltitol, Xylitol, Isomalt, Sorbitol, Lactitol, Erythritol, and Mannitol)

  2. Maltitol Glycemic Index 2:

  3. Maltitol Glycemic Index 3:

  4. Maltitol Blood Sugar Spike Example:

  5. Xyllitol Glycemic Index 2:

  6. Xylitol Glycemic Index 3:

  7. Isomalt Glycemic Index 2:

  8. Lactitol Glycemic Index 2:

  9. Lactitol Glycemic Index 3:

  10. Isomalto-Oligosaccharides and Soluble Corn Fiber Glycemic Index and Digestibility:

  11. Soluble Corn Fiber Glucose and Insulin Response: (Figure 3)

  12. Relative Glycemic Response of Soluble Corn Fiber:

  13. Wheat and Corn Based Dextrin Glycemic Index: (25)

  14. Wheat Dextrin Glycemic Index and More Information: (25% of glucose)

  15. Labeling: Dextrin = Soluble Fiber:

  16. Dextrin Glycemic and Insulin Responses: