Preparing For The Worst The Keto Flu And How To Remedy It
If you have never tried the keto diet before, you are probably a carb-burning machine. By following keto, you will be robbing your body of its primary fuel source and this abrupt dietary shift will cause many changes throughout your body.
As a result of these changes, you may experience something called the keto flu. Keto flu is basically an umbrella term for the flu-like symptoms that may occur as your body adapts to a significant decrease in carb consumption.
Fortunately, you can make it through this flu especially now that you are going to be prepared for it.
If, during the first few days of keto dieting, you experience fatigue, mental fogginess, and/or other keto flu symptoms, try using these three strategies to help remedy them right away:
- Drink more water
- increase your sodium, potassium, and magnesium intake
- Eat more fat
For more specific info on the keto flu, its symptoms, and how to remedy it, check out this article.
Your Energy Levels May Stabilize Even Increase
Once the body is keto-adaptedwhich can take anywhere from six to 12 weeksenergy levels begin to stabilize, Dr. Osborn says. Unlike other diets in which one may experience energy spikes due to carbohydrate consumption, the keto diet provides a steady level of energy.
As your body enters a state of ketosis, it becomes very resourceful at burning fat for energy, as well as turning fat into ketones in the liverwhich helps to supply energy to the brain, say The Naughty Nutritionists. Another theory suggests that as you give up highly-processed, sugary foods and eat more whole foods, which are necessary on a keto diet, your body sees more energy with an increase in nutrients. Check out why keto is on its way to becoming one of the more popular diets to try.
Monitor Your Thyroid Hormones
It makes sense that your diet affects your cholesterol and blood sugar levels but did you know can impact your thyroid hormones too?
T4 and T3 are the main hormones produced by the thyroid gland. They play an essential role in many vital body functions, including your heart rate, metabolism and fertility.
Thyroid Stimulating Hormone , which comes from your pituitary, is also crucial to how well your body functions, as it affects the amount of T4 and T3 your thyroid produces.
The keto diet doesnt usually cause any problems if your thyroid is functioning normally.
But eating too few carbs can lower your thyroid hormone levels, which may cause issues if your baseline levels are already low.
For example, if your T3 and T4 levels are low, you may experience problems like fatigue, constipation and weight gain.
And if you think this doesnt apply to you, consider this: the American Thyroid Association estimates that nearly 20 million Americans have some sort of thyroid disease, and as many as 60 per cent of those dont know they have the condition.
Thats why its a good idea to check your T3, T4 and TSH levels if youre thinking of following the keto diet, so you can make sure your diet isnt exacerbating any underlying issues.
Want to check if the keto diet is right for you? Try our Keto Lab Panel for a discounted price until the end of this month!
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Why Will Eating Fat Help You Burn Fat
Biology is smart. Historically, it allowed our bodies to adapt to times of abundance or scarcity by shifting from carbohydrate metabolism to fat metabolism.
When we found lots of wild fruit, wed store the carbs as belly fat. Later, in lean times, we would use the fat as a backup source of fuel.
The key is this: Eating fat does not make your insulin go up, as eating carbs or protein does. So the keto diet does not spike your insulin, and you dont store fat. Instead, you burn it, creating the ketones that give you an effective and efficient metabolic jolt.
Not Losing Weight On Keto
As a reminder, the goal with keto is to put your body into a state of fat-burning ketosis by mostly eliminating carbs. Schaub says some people will reach ketosis after about one week, while others may take a little longer.
Once you are in ketosis, if you are consuming fewer calories than you are expending, you will burn body fat and lose weight, she explains.
However, its totally possible to be in a state of ketosis and not lose weight. Schaub says that if you enter ketosis but continue eating enough food to cover your energy needs, your body wont start burning fat cells for energy because it simply isnt necessary. You still need a calorie deficit to lose weight, ketosis or not.
Theres also another reason why you could find yourself not losing weight on keto or, worse, gaining weight: eating too many fatty foods. Since the keto diet is high in fat and fat is very calorie-dense, Schaub says you will gain weight if you are in an overall calorie excess regardless of where those calories come from.
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Keto Diet And Diabetes
You may have noticed that people looking to improve their insulin sensitivity are often good candidates for the keto diet typically, this refers to people who have diabetes, though not everyone with diabetes should try keto.
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Patients with type 1 diabetes must be very careful with the keto diet because the ketosis process could increase their risk of diabetic ketoacidosis, a very dangerous state which can lead to hospitalization and death, says Laila Tabatabai, MD, an endocrinologist at Houston Methodist.
Patients with type 2 diabetes, though, could benefit more readily from the keto diet. Dr. Tabatabai says that the reduction in carbs and overall weight loss on keto means your body requires less insulin, which in turn helps stabilize blood glucose levels.
But that still doesnt mean you should start keto ASAP if you have type 2 diabetes. Studies have shown that short-term use of the keto diet can help patients with type 2 diabetes lose weight do not yet have long-term data on its safety and efficacy, emphasizes Dr. Tabatabai.
A 2019 review of the recent research into type 2 diabetes and low-carb diets published in Nutrients shows that most of the studies performed lasted several months . Though the results are positive in the short-term, all diabetes patientswhether type 1 or type 2should talk to their doctors before starting the keto diet.
The Atkins Diet Is A 4
The Atkins diet is split into 4 different phases:
- Phase 1 : Under 20 grams of carbs per day for 2 weeks. Eat high-fat, high-protein, with low-carb vegetables like leafy greens. This kick-starts the weight loss.
- Phase 2 : Slowly add more nuts, low-carb vegetables and small amounts of fruit back to your diet.
- Phase 3 : When youre very close to your goal weight, add more carbs to your diet until weight loss slows down.
- Phase 4 : Here you can eat as many healthy carbs as your body can tolerate without regaining weight.
However, these phases are a bit complicated and may not be necessary. You should be able to lose weight and keep it off as long as you stick to the meal plan below.
Some people choose to skip the induction phase altogether and include plenty of vegetables and fruit from the start. This approach can be very effective as well.
Others prefer to just stay in the induction phase indefinitely. This is also known as a very low-carb ketogenic diet .
You should avoid these foods on the Atkins diet:
You should base your diet around these healthy foods.
As long as you base your meals around a fatty protein source with vegetables or nuts and some healthy fats, you will lose weight. Its that simple.
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What Should You Eat On Keto Foods To Avoid Vs Keto
In general, here is what you should and shouldnt eat on the keto diet:
Avoid These Foods to Enter and Sustain Ketosis
- Grains and grain-based foods wheat, corn, rice, pasta, granola, cereal, etc.
- Sugar and sugar-sweetened products table sugar, soda, sports drinks, honey, agave, maple syrup, etc.
- Most fruits apples, bananas, oranges, etc.
- Tubers and tuber-based food products potatoes, potato chips, French fries, yams, etc.
- Sweeteners stevia, erythritol, monk fruit, and other low-carb sweeteners >
- Other healthy fats coconut oil, avocado oil, olive oil, animal fats, etc.
This simple food list may be all you need as guidance to help you enter and maintain ketosis. The key principle that separates the foods we should eat from the foods we should avoid on keto is how many carbs each food typically contains.
Most grains, for example, contain enough carbs per cup to prevent you from producing ketones or swiftly kick you out of ketosis. The same concept applies to sugars, tubers, most fruits, and most of the products that contain these foods/ingredients. Each food is so carb-rich that it can rapidly increase blood sugar and insulin levels, shifting your body from burning fat and ketones to prioritizing sugar use.
In summary, the most important factor that determines whether a food good or bad for the keto diet is its net carb content.
What Is The Ketogenic Diet
A typical ketogenic diet consists of at least 70 percent of calories derived from fat, less than 10 percent from carbs and less than 20 percent from protein. The ketogenic diet, long used to treat epilepsy in children, calls for 90 percent of daily calories to come from fat, with the amount of protein or carbs varying as long as its 4 grams of fat for every combined 1 gram of carb and protein, according to the American Epilepsy Society. That can mean chowing down on a lot of cheese, butter, eggs, nuts, salmon, bacon, olive oil and non-starchy vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, greens and spinach. For the arithmetic-challenged, apps and online programs can do the math for you.
The goal of the ketogenic diet is to enter a state of ketosis through fat metabolism. In a ketogenic state, the body uses primarily fat for energy instead of carbohydrates with low levels of carbohydrate, fats can be converted into ketones to fuel the body.
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Is The Keto Diet Bad For You
Both Condon and Kleinman said they wouldnt recommend the keto diet to their patients because it is ultimately not realistic or sustainable. The diet restricts fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and low fat dairy that can help with long term weight loss and overall health.
Theres not one diet thats good for everyone, Kleinman said. Do your research, consult a dietitian, discuss with your doctor, and make sure youre being safe.
Call the Health and Nutrition Experts atUChicago Medicine Ingalls Memorial at to discuss nutrition counseling programs offered to meet your personalized needs.
What Is Ketosis And Is It Healthy
Ketosis is a natural metabolic state.
It involves the body producing ketone bodies out of fat and using them for energy instead of carbs. You can get into ketosis by following a very low carb, high fat ketogenic diet .
A ketogenic diet can help you lose weight. In the short term, you can lose weight quickly, because it reduces the bodys stores of glycogen and water.
In the long term, it can suppress your appetite leading to a lower calorie intake.
Ketosis is quite complex, but this article explains what it is and how it can benefit you.
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Eat The Right Amount Of Keto
Your calorie consumption is the most important variable to be aware of when you are trying to lose or gain weight. If eating keto foods isnt getting you closer to the results you want, you may need to track how much you eat more precisely.
To illustrate the importance of calories, here are some principles behind dieting that have held true after a tremendous amount of scrutiny:
- When we eat fewer calories than we use throughout the day , we lose weight.
- When we eat more calories than we use throughout the day , we gain weight.
And the two previous statements hold true regardless of the fat and carb content of your diet .
If we follow the data further, we find that:
- Severely restricting calories will cause dramatic weight loss that increases the likelihood of hormonal issues and weight regain in the future.
- Being in an excessive calorie surplus will cause an increase in fat mass and health issues like heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Altogether, we can conclude that if you want to gain or lose weight in the healthiest way possible slow and steady wins the race. In fact, research indicates that losing weight at a rate of 1 to 2 pounds per week is best.
Why Is The Keto Diet Bad For You
While TODAY’s Al Roker is a big fan of the keto diet, the nutrition plan has its fair share of critics. The reality is that any diet can be made unhealthy. The benefit or harm of the keto diet will depend on the dietary pattern chosen.
Very low-carbohydrate diets that lack sufficient vegetables and other important phytonutrients may harm health in the long-term, but a keto plan that includes fiber-rich plants, healthy fats and moderate protein can be beneficial to weight management and reduce and manage chronic disease.
Constipation may occur, but can avoided through consumption of higher fiber foods. Additionally, many individuals will experience what is commonly known as the keto flu which are unpleasant symptoms that can occur when the body is transitioning from a carb- to fat-burning mode. These are short-term and subside as the body enters ketosis.
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Risk: You Could Develop Dangerous Nutrient Deficiencies
Eliminating food groups can be problematic. Ketogenic diets are often low in calcium, vitamin D, magnesium, and folic acid, which over time can lead to nutrient deficiencies if the diet is not planned carefully, adds , a sports performance nutritionist in Atlanta.
What To Eat On Keto
Eating keto means choosing foods that are low in carbs and high in fatbut thats not always as easy as it sounds. Carbs arent just lurking in refined pastas and breads many healthy foods, such as fruits and vegetables, contain carbs .
Heres an example of some popular keto-friendly foods:
- Meat and poultry
- Dairy products like cheese, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, and whipping cream
- Low-carb vegetables like spinach, cauliflower, and mushrooms
- Bacon, jerky, and sausage
- Nuts, seeds, and monounsaturated oils
Because so many people are doing keto right now, theres no shortage of recipes catering to the diets specificationsbut eating keto still requires a lot of careful planning and preparation.
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Does The Ketogenic Diet Offer Long
Its not known yet. If you tell people to go on this diet forever and for a longer term, there is no evidence, said Dr. Prado, of the University of Alberta who co-authored a narrative review on the ketogenic diet as a possible therapy for cancer.
The diet does help children with epilepsy: Nearly a third to two-thirds of patients experience 50 percent fewer seizures after six months on the regimen. There are case studies on how 10 patients with a rare condition fared on the diet for a decade, but most well-designed studies in this field have not extended beyond two years.
Should You Try A Ketogenic Diet
No single diet is suitable for everyone, especially since individual metabolism, genes, body types, lifestyles, taste buds, and personal preferences differ.
It can benefit people with obesity or who have a higher chance of developing metabolic syndrome, but its not suitable for everyone. For example, its not suitable for people with the following conditions (
- pyruvate kinase deficiency
There may also be some negative effects. When you first start the diet, you may experience flu-like symptoms, known as keto flu.
Researchers have not yet done enough long-term investigation to find out precisely what the long-term effects might be, but there may be a risk of kidney or liver problems.
Theres also a risk of dehydration, so you need to drink plenty of fluids, especially water, while following this diet .
Always speak to a doctor before starting a ketogenic diet to ensure that its safe and suitable for you.
A ketogenic diet may also not be the best option for elite athletes or those wishing to build large amounts of muscle.
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What Do You Eat On The Keto Diet
The keto diet is essentially a high-fat diet your meals are 70 or 80% fat about 20% protein and about 5% carbohydrate. It is not an Atkins high-protein diet.
The keto diet switches you from burning glucose to burning ketones for energy. When you do this, interesting things happen:
- Your metabolism speeds up.
- Your blood pressure and heart disease risk profile improve.