Here I’m going to address Keto Diet concerns of many people when they are thinking about starting the keto diet, or the keto lifestyle as I like to call it. A lot of people make a huge deal out this when in fact it really isn’t that bad. It’s nothing compared to actually getting the stomach flu or even the cold/flu. I personally did not get sick to my stomach at all, I did get a headache for maybe a day and I did have diarrhea for a couple of days but nothing that wouldn’t be worth it for the way I feel today.
About 25% of people who begin the keto diet experience what is commonly known as the “keto flu“. I personally do not like to refer to these symptoms as the Keto flu because I believe it is your body adapting to change and some withdrawal.
Think about it, you’re taking what your body is used to burning (sugarglucose) away. Let’s think about it this way how do you think your toddler might react if you told them they couldn’t have anymore treats or chocolate? Not only does this affect your physical body it affects your mental state as well, sugar is an addictive substance whether we like to admit to it or not.
I wrote an article on Keto & Kids that is quite eye opening and may help you better understand why we have side affects from adapting to this way of life. Your bound to experience some unpleasant symptoms but the good news is, it is only short term. If you are one percent out of the 25% that experience the “keto flu”, the longest you can expect for it to last is two weeks and that’s not saying your going to experience every side affect.
I can’t stress enough how important it is to hydrate yourself thoroughly during this transition and if you can add in a table spoon of Mother Braggs apple cider vinegar, this has great benefits and will help you get through the adaptation process.
Once your body adapts to these changes, the symptoms will subside. You can lessen these symptoms by drinking plenty of water and get as much rest as you can. If you start to experience body cramps like charlie horses which is quite common you can eat keto friendly foods high in potassium or take a potassium supplement. I personally always keep a salt substitute called “no salt” on hand at all times. I talk more about nutrients we need on Keto more in my article The Importance Of Electrolytes.
One other thing I need to add in here is that we do not need to go out and buy all these supplements, it is easily attainable through the foods we eat. Many people do invest in supplements as it does make living this way a bit easier to have something you can grab and go. There are many places to get these products including quick healthy snacks, even sweet tasting ones.
These symptoms may include:
- upset stomach
- bloating or cramping
- fatigue or weakness
- sleeplessness or feeling restless
- keto rash
Keto rash as you may of heard of is not very common but it can occur but usually after your entering a state of Ketosis as we produce more acetone which also shows up in our breath. It can be irritating to the skin and comes out with our sweat. This “rash” can also manifest if we are having a nutrient deficiency, I have written an article all about The Importance of Electrolytes should you be interested in starting this lifestyle. I have been on Keto for two years now and I have not experienced this “rash”, I have read of other people experiencing it but not so much that they had to revert back to an unhealthy lifestyle.
If you do get the “keto rash” it may go away on its own after you’ve gotten past the transitional phase into Ketosis. If it does not clear up with time you can try eating more than 20 grams of healthy carbs per day and see if it makes a difference. If it does you can bounce back and forth between 50-75 grams of carbs per day as well as implementing intermittent fasting, I have also written an article on Intermitent Fasting and Autophagy that I think you will benefit from reading.
Sometimes it’s not from producing ketones at all, sometimes it can be an allergic reaction to eating new keto friendly foods and vegetables you never used to eat before. If you suspect it could be an allergy you can try eliminating each food long enough to see if it changes the rash or you can consult your Doctor. We can’t always assume this change in lifestyle is the culprit it could just be bad timing.
Some people don’t experience any of these symptoms. I myself only experiences some fatigue a headache and diarrhea, it passed within a couple of days.
Your body is making a big change and it takes time to adapt. After it has adapted you will reap all the benefits the keto lifestyle has to offer.
I did fall off the keto wagon a couple times and just like most diets the majority of the time you will gain the weight back. I do think this depends on a lot of factors such as your age, metabolic rate, underlying health issues and genetics.
At my age and after three children I can’t reasonably expect to eat whatever I want and lose weight, or even maintain my weight.
So my advice is to think reasonably and act accordingly. Thank you for taking the time to read this, pass it along to your friends and please leave me some feedback in the comment section below.