Putting your body into ketosis is a major shift in your metabolism. You are forcing your body to switch from burning carbs to burning fat for energy.
For some this is easy and their energy levels increase, clearer thinking occurs and it is the best thing that has happened to them.
For others it feels like they are sick and have no energy for at least the first few days until their body can adapt.
Here is what it feels like to go Keto and what to expect.
First few days:
At first you may feel low on energy and a little lethargic. A common side effect is a headache and sometimes even flu like symptoms. This usually only lasts 3-6 days and it is because of the depletion of muscle glycogen and the lack of sugar that you are no longer consuming.
This is the hardest part so once you get past this phase it gets a whole lot easier. Your body is used to burning sugar for energy so once you take it away it can be quite a shock to your system. The good thing is your body does adapt and will start to convert its energy requirements to fat stores and fat consumption.
You will usually see quite a bit of initial weight loss in the first 7 days. This is exciting from a psychological standpoint, but understand that it mostly water weight and water depletion.
For every gram of carbohydrate that you consume your body is going to store 4 grams of water. So, when you stop consuming 150 grams of carbs you will also stop holding 600 gms of water. Hence, the weight loss you see on the scale.
This may cause a lack of energy during your workouts also, but this energy will come back as your body adapts to burning fat for fuel.
By the end of this second week your body will be adapting fairly well to burning fat for fuel and your energy levels will start to come back up. Your glycogen levels will be depleted at this point and your body will start to produce ketones that it will be able to use for energy.
At this point you can start using ketone strips to test your levels and see if you are in ketosis and no longer relying on sugar storage for energy.
At this point if you are staying within 20-40 grams per day you should be in ketosis. If you find that you are averaging 40 grams per day and you are not in ketosis then drop it down to 30 grams of carbs per day for another week and the test to see if you are now in ketosis.
Every person is going to be different and why the test strips become valuable to provide feedback on where you level of ketosis is at.
Your energy levels should be back at this point and you may actually have increased energy and focus compared to when you were eating all the carbs on the old eating plan. You will no longer feel like you have to eat constantly throughout the day and your body will have more than enough energy from the nutrients and meals you are eating.
When you break it down into weeks like this and know what to expect you can see that it isn’t quite as challenging as you first thought
To help ensure your success on a keto diet we have developed a formula that minimizes any "keto flu" that some people report getting when they first get into ketosis.