Keto flu – Neutralize the Side Effects of Keto Diet

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Young woman with curly hair sitting in bed with strong headache

You want to make sure the coming summer is the best ever, you made a few research and boom- you begin a low carbs diet, you hit the gym four times a week instead of your usual twice a month and what else, you find yourself running every mornings. But what happened after the first week? You still have the will to keep up with your new resolutions but the energy isn’t there, you’re always tired and lightheaded and you’re having a hard time at work because you’re having trouble concentrating.

Well, as you may have suspected what is wrong with you is a side effect of your diet change known as the keto flu symptoms. If you haven’t heard of it before, don’t be alarmed. It’s not a flu that kills, it’s not communicable or dangerous it’s only called a flu because its symptoms presents like one.

Symptoms or the keto diet side effects usually commence after the first few days, usually the third or fourth day as your body tries to adapt to a new basal energy level.

Woman with high temperature lies in bed and cools her head with a ice pad

What causes the keto flu?

Basically, a series of changes occur within the first few days and afterwards, the symptoms disappear. Your body has a low carbohydrate supply which compels it to seek for energy from secondary sources in this case –ketones which is a byproduct of fat metabolism. Normally, this process of ketosis occurs during prolonged fasting and starvation as the body has to maintain a fairly constant glucose level in the blood, ketone bodies which are secondary energy sources are converted to glucose by body tissues.

This process is also achieved by subjecting yourself to a ketogenic diet that is starting keto, and extending it over a stretched period. During the first few days, your body has to transition from its usual carbohydrate metabolism for energy to burning of fat for most of the energy that it needs. Since carbohydrate foods stimulates the secretion of insulin, a hormone that causes carbohydrate oxidation to release energy, ketogenic diet greatly reduces insulin secretion levels which ultimately means your body has to feed on something else. Keri flu is basically a jerk diet side effect.

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When your body starts to utilize the fat stores in the body, you’re said to be in ketosis. However, because of your body’s addiction to carbohydrate, you experience some withdrawal symptoms as organs like your brain which depends solely on glucose for fast energy takes a while to adapt to the new source of fuel. This change presents a rapid loss of weight initially which is very welcoming but the carb withdrawal symptoms could be mild ore extreme and uncomfortable. The temporary keto flu symptoms or ketosis symptoms may hinder the physical activity of some people in extreme cases and usually include the following;

  • Exhaustion
  • Bad temper
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Laziness
  • Nausea
Happy woman with curly hair stretching her arms upwards

Remedy for the keto flu

As said earlier, symptoms are only temporary and regress due to acclimatization after a couple of days but you don’t have to go through the unbearable, unnecessary suffering when there are simple keto flu remedies that can help you. Keto flu shouldn’t be confused with keratosis pilaris which is a dry harmful skin presentation, it’s symptoms are not related to those of keto flu and shouldn’t be considered a cause of ketosis pilaris.

Man opens filled bottle with water

Drink more water & consume more salt

Ketosis is associated with loss of body electrolyte and a corresponding loss of body water. This usually results in the sick felling symptom. Increasing your daily intake of both salt and water can to a large extent suppress disturbing symptoms.

The symptoms of keto diarrhea, dizziness, lethargy, constipation, nausea and similar ones will present a few days into your keto diet and when this happens, a glass of water mixed with half a teaspoon size of salt is a quick remedy as this effortless procedure can ease the symptoms within minutes. Or better still, you can do this regularly before symptoms present, twice a day.

A lot of people may find salt water boring because it actually is hence a tastier alternative will be bouillon, beef or chicken stock with a little salt. After or alongside which you take a glass of water. It is really important that you consume enough water during this period a minimum of three liters daily as compared to two for a normal dieted person.

Woman sitting in bed eating out of a bowl of cornflakes and fruits

Reduce the transition load

Ketogenic foods are not only for people interested in weight loss as people who present with metabolic disorders like type II diabetes have an obligation to a ketogenic lifestyle. If symptoms persist after drinking lots of water and salt, it is advised that one reduce the transition rate by consuming a little more carbohydrate. 20 grams of may slow down the weight loss process but it’s only for a short while until you can tolerate the changes.

Increase fat consumption a little

The two main sources of energy for your body are carbohydrate and fat so if you’re low on carbs and low on fat, you’re starving and will feel miserable so, increase your fat intake a little bit until you reach the balance between satiety and hunger.

Woman lies relaxed on the sofa and reads a thick book

Too much physical activity increases symptoms

During the first few weeks, your physical performance should reduce so it’s logical to take it slow on physical activity until much later. Strenuous physical activity usually presents with keto headache. While you can walk and stretch, running will be too much when compounded with the stress your body is currently undergoing. As weeks go by, you can slowly increase the intensity of your exercise.

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