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Is Miso Soup Keto or Not?

Is Miso Soup Keto or Not?

Miso soup is a common item on Japanese menus that many people expect and look forward to when dining at their favorite Japanese restaurants. There are also Chinese equivalents to Miso, which will have more or less the same effect on your diet efforts as genuine Japanese Miso. It has also been considered a lean and healthy snack that diet conscious people can have with no guilt. So, in the age of the ketogenic diet, people are asking, is Miso soup low-carb? The good news is that Miso soup is absolutely keto friendly. 

Japanese miso soup in bowl

Miso soup contains very few carbohydrates, so few that it is hardly a threat to your diet and will not kick you out of kenogenesis all by itself. Miso soup is commonly made with Miso paste and Daishi stock. There are some westernized varieties that use chicken or fish stock, but these are equally keto-friendly. Miso has been around for thousands of years and the most common ingredients include pork, mushrooms, egg, fish, spinach, tofu, and onions.

Dashi stock is a traditional Japanese base for Miso soup and is what makes it what it is. Dashi is a category of soup stock that can come from a wide range of ingredients. These include kombu seaweed, bonito flakes, dried sardines, dried shiitake, dried scallops, mushrooms, toasted soybeans, or dried shrimp. A lot of people have expressed concern that because there is such a wide range of ingredients in Miso soup, and because it can be hard to tell which you are getting when you order it at a restaurant, you can easily lose count of your carbs if the chef uses slightly different ingredients one day.

While it is true that an excess of some kinds of protein can be converted into carbs, it is only true when you are taking in very large amounts of protein. This is very unlikely to happen with a single serving of Miso unless you are eating massive amounts of beef on the side and are cutting it very close. Therefore, you have very little to worry about if you are a fan of Miso soup.

Miso Soup Nutritional Facts

It is rather difficult to nail down the nutritional facts to a certainty because there are so many alternative ingredients. However, all of the different traditional ingredient substitutes are very similar in terms of their carb content. So we can say a few more or less definitive things about Miso soup. The following nutritional summary is based on the mean of the range of different ingredient types, and we believe you can trust quality Miso soup not to kick you out of ketosis as long as you are at least 10 grams of carbs short of your personal keto limit.

Calories: 84 per serving

Fat: 3.36 grams per serving

Carbs: 7.78 grams per serving

Protein: 6.02 grams per serving

These numbers are based on a serving size of 1 cup. Your carb limit is going to fall somewhere between 25 and 50 grams per day in order to remain in ketosis. If you find yourself getting kicked out of ketosis unexpectedly, then your limit may be closer to 25 than 50. Unfortunately, every individual has to experiment and count carbs exactly to find out where their limit is. Also, keep in mind that your carb tolerance is going to decrease with age. 

That being said, you do need to look out for cheap alternatives out there that might have added salt, sugar, a load of preservatives, and who knows what else. Fortunately, we have found some quality brands of Miso soup that you should be able to trust listed and discussed in the following sections.

miso soup

Additional Miso Soup Nutritional Facts

Saturated fat: 0.622 grams

Polyunsaturated fat: 1.394 grams

Monounsaturated fat: 1.085

Sodium: 998 milligrams

Dietary fiber: 1.9 grams

Calcium 62 milligrams

Iron: 1.82 milligrams

Potassium: 367 milligrams

Vitamin A: 233 micrograms

Vitamin C: 6 milligrams

Health Benefits of Miso Soup 

When made properly, and especially when made to traditional standards of purity and freshness, Miso soup is extremely good for your health. It is made from a long list of natural ingredients, all of which come with some pretty nice benefits for your health.

Good Source of Probiotics

Microbes that aid digestion are critical to digestive health and good health in general.

Contains Quality Amino Acids

High quality amino acids can be hard to find. But if you look for genuine, high quality Miso, especially the kinds that contain fish and seafood protein, you are going to get a fair portion of your daily amino acid requirements.

Good Source of Minerals

Minerals are an important resource that helps our cells function properly. Miso soup is loaded with them.

Good Source of Quality Sodium

Salt has gotten a bad name from the table salt we commonly get. But Miso is loaded with natural salts like sea salt, which is the most important mineral for your health.

Rich in Antioxidants

Antioxidants are to your immune system what a sword and armor are to a knight. They give your killer T cells the tools they need to kick disease and pathogens in the pants.

Promotes Weight Loss

Since miso soup is so low in carbs and contains a small amount of healthy fat, it does not promote weight gain.

Improves Blood Pressure

The lack of carbs and the presence of healthy fats are the killer combination to boost good circulation and reduce plaque buildup in blood vessels and arteries.

Good for Thyroid Health

The high quality sodium and potassium in Miso helps your thyroid function properly.

Promotes a Healthy Nervous System

The vitamin B12 contained in the best Miso brands and the good sodium give your nervous system what it needs to function well and remain healthy. Also, the good fats help regenerate and protect the myelin sheath on your neural axons.

Best Keto Brands of Miso Soup 

Generally speaking, canned or packaged Miso soup should only be served fresh. When it comes canned, it is bound to have some preservatives that will reduce its effectiveness as a health food. Still, for many people, getting fresh Miso is not practical. Our research revealed that good canned Miso is rare, but there is one company that does an acceptable job: Kettle & Fire.

Kettle & Fire makes a wide range of healthy soups and has found some clever ways to package them for relatively long term storage. They are not as long lasting as most similar products. So make sure to use your Kettle & Fire Miso before it expires.