Over the years, Keto diets have continued to enjoy increased popularity and patronage.
Several keto-related products and recipes have flooded both the internet and local stores.
A keto diet does not only help in weight loss, but it also helps in treating some health conditions like diabetes and cancer.
That said, you probably would be wondering What are the Keto diet Side effects? we are to discuss one by one keto side effects that you should know before stating it.
Once you start a ketogenic diet, your body goes through a stage of adjustment before it reaches ketosis. Ketosis is the stage where your body begins to produce ketone as an alternative source of energy to glucose
Unfortunately, unlike other diets, starting a keto diet comes with a few changes in its early stages.
one more thing,
In this article I am also discussing, what are the several changes that happen when you start a ketogenic diet.
Before we start, Let kneed to understand What is a Keto Diet and its Types?
What is a Keto Diet?
A Keto diet, which also refers to a ketogenic diet is a moderate protein, a low-carb and high-fat diet that helps in effectively burning fat in the body.
The ketogenic diet has various similarities with other low-carb and Atkins. It significantly reduces carbohydrates hence replacing it with fat. The carb reduction process thus places your body into ketosis.
Additionally, a ketogenic diet helps in weight loss, improving health, performance, and for treating type 2 diabetes.
Types of Keto Diet
Like other diets, the Keto diet is available in many variations. Although the ketogenic diets vary, they have some similarities and produces the same result.
Find below some of the types of keto diets available:
17 Keto Diet Side Effects that you Should Know.
1. Keto Bad Breath.
When you start the keto diet, your body begins to adjust to the shortage of glucose for fuel.
At that point, it then begins to burn the stored carbs previously stored as glycogen in your liver.
This process creates ketones that your brain and body then use as fuel.
During the breakdown of ketones, acetone is one of its by-products. Acetone is the substance used in producing paint thinners and nail polish remover.
The acetone gets expelled through your breath, and thus causes makes your breath have a bad, fruity-smelling, and nail polish remover smell. It is one of the most common side effects experienced by those on a keto diet experience. Aside from this, the acetone does not have any harmful effects on the body.
Although the acetone breath is not suitable for your social life, it is a great sign that your diet is producing results. To reduce the effect of the acetone breath, some dieters brush more frequently, use sugar-free drinks, gum, and other alternatives.
It is, however, advisable that you check the labels of the product to ensure they are carb-free or low on carbs. It will help in reducing the chances of increasing your sugar or ketone level.
Learn > How to get rid of Bad Breath?
2. Keto Flu
During the early days of starting the ketogenic diet, your body system begins to adjust to carbohydrate withdrawal.
The withdrawal process causes brain fog, body aches, temporary loss of energy, and the feeling of being sick.
This symptom is known as keto flu.
Although not everyone experiences this flu, it is necessary to prepare for it.
The keto flu mostly lasts for between two (2) to four (4) days and is easy to minimize by eating more salt, potassium, and increased water intake.
Read - Keto Flu: Symptoms and Remedies You Should Know[The Definitive Guide]
3. Reduction in Blood Sugar Levels
The increase in ketones and reduction in blood sugar levels is one of the key benefits of a keto diet. When you start a keto diet, you gradually begin to burn ketones and fats as your energy source.
Due to the high intake of carbohydrates and sugar, there is an increase in blood sugar levels.
A ketogenic diet helps you limit the rate of increase in your blood sugar.
Therefore, your body will not need to produce much insulin, thus helping your body to break down fats effectively.
The reduction in blood sugar is also a sign of ketosis. According to experts, if your sugar level is above 0.5 mmol/L, then you are already in ketosis.
You can make use of a blood testing meter to test for ketones in your blood.
Although the testing meter may be a bit expensive, and it will require a little pinprick to draw blood samples, measuring the ketones remains the most accurate method of testing.
Read more -- Ketosis Low Blood Sugar: Should I be worried about?
4. Appetite Suppression
Appetite suppression is yet another effect that comes with starting a keto diet. It significantly suppresses your appetite for food and hunger.
Once you begin to feel full or reduce the frequency ad quantity of food you normally eat, then you might just be in ketosis.
The hunger suppression that comes with a keto diet is a result of the increase in the intake of vegetables and protein. Also, it can be due to some alterations to the hunger hormones of your body.
The two hunger hormones are ghrelin and cholecystokinin. While green is the appetite hormone, cholecystokinin is responsible for making you feel satisfied.
Also, it helps to reduce your cravings for sugary and processed foods.
5. Digestive Issues
The keto diet is a key drift in people’s normal diet. As a result, it is likely to cause some changes in bowel movements, bloating, and increased gas in the stomach.
That said, these symptoms can lead to digestive issues such as diarrhea and constipation when you start the diet. However, these issues begin to lessen after the transition stage.
All through the transitional stage, it is advisable to take digestive enzymes as they help in faster fat digestion hence taking care of diarrhea.
In the case of constipation, consuming clean ketogenic diets will help your body adjust.
Generally, like other symptoms that come with starting a keto diet, your digestion will improve as your body adjusts to the new diet.
Also, ensure you eat healthy low-carb veggies that contain plenty of fiber but low in carbs.
6. Muscle Cramps
When there is a reduction in your body’s carbohydrate intake, the insulin your it produces reduces. Insulin is the substance responsible for processing the carbs to produce glucose.
The reduction in the amount of insulin produced causes your kidney to discharge more sodium. As a result, your essential electrolytes move out of balance, which leads to temporary muscle cramps.
When you start a ketogenic diet, you might experience leg or back cramps. It is due to the lack of potassium and sodium in the body. The keto diet also causes a loss of fluid stored in the organs and muscles.
Just like in the case of fatigue, you can remedy this effect by adding to your water a pinch of Himalayan salt.
It will help in balancing your body’s electrolytes and provide some form of relief.
Once you start a keto diet, you are likely to experience difficulty in sleeping. Research shows that you may experience dream sleep or shorter periods of REM as part of the signs that come attaining ketosis.
The difficulty in sleeping and insomnia experienced at the early stage of a keto diet is due to an imbalance in the body's electrolyte. The condition improves after a few weeks on the ketogenic diet.
To improve your sleep, you will need to eat foods rich in minerals and stay hydrated always. Additionally, once you adapt to the ketogenic diet and your body adjusts to the burning of stored fat, your sleep will become longer, deeper, and relaxing.
8. You May Observe Changes in Your Urine
When you start a ketogenic diet, you are likely to observe several changes in your urine. Some of the changes include frequent urinating, smell, changes in your urine’s color, among others.
The changes in urine are as a result of excretion of ketones, less water retention by your body, to mention a few. Since carbs and glycogen help in water retention in your muscles and liver, you should stay hydrated often.
9. Diminished Cravings
Keto diet helps to control your blood sugar level. As a result, it reduces your cravings. When you cut down on sugary and high carbohydrate foods, you can make healthier food choices.
That said, you are also able to go extended periods without feeling hungry. Also, you may experience intermittent fasting while on a keto diet.
The early days of a keto diet could be a bit nerve-wracking for new dieters. It is one of the most common side effects of a keto diet. As your body tries to adjust from burning carbohydrates to burning fat for energy, you may experience fatigue and weakness.
You will continue to experience fatigue until your body gets fully into ketosis. Like other side effects, fatigue will reduce as your body adjusts to the diet.
However, to reduce weakness and fatigue, you can take electrolyte supplements as a quick reduction in the water content of your body cause the loss of electrolytes.
11. Body Rash
Keto rash is yet another effect you may experience when you start a keto diet. Although it is not popular, it can still happen. Keto rash often occurs due to a deficiency in vitamin at the beginning of the diet.
If you get infected with keto rash, it will appear as raised red, light pink, or brown skin lesions. It might be uncomfortable and itchy but not dangerous.
You can lessen the effect of the keto rash by taking multivitamins and broadening your food variety.
12. Reduction in Inflammation
Inflammation often increases the risk of having a couple of negative health conditions such as bowel diseases, cancer, and heart disease. A keto diet helps in lowering inflammation in your entire body hence improves your overall health condition.
When you start a keto diet, you will notice a gradual reduction in inflammation in your body.
13. Keto Constipitation.
If Keto diet is not planned correctly, it may cause constipation.
This is common to the keto dieters and thus should not worry you. Some factors need to be addressed on the nutritional plan to deal with constipation.
The keto diet should include all the necessary components and done the right way to eliminate the oval and uncomfortable feeling in the stomach.
14. Rapid Loss of Weight
Rapid weight loss is yet another thing that occurs when you drastically cut down on carbohydrates or start a keto diet. You are likely to experience both short term and long-term weight loss at the beginning of a keto diet before it eventually becomes stable.
The rapid loss of weight is due to the diuretic effect of ketosis on your body, which leads to a rapid loss of water weight. While a lot of persons believe the rapid weight loss is due to the loss of fat, it is not true. Rather, it is as a result of the usage of water and stored carbs in the body.
But as the body gradually becomes used to keto, it begins to convert fat to ketones, which it uses for fuel. At this point, you begin to consistently lose body fat provided you continue with the ketogenic diet and remain calorie deficit.
Ensure you feed your body with as many calories as needed to keep your muscles while you are on the keto diet.
15. Increased Energy
When you start the keto diet, your body begins to make adjustments from using glucose for energy to using fat. This switching process is called ketosis and often makes your body feel exhausted. But as you begin to reach ketosis, you will realize that you begin to get increased energy and better endurance.
At this stage, you burn fat as fuel, which in turn means you will not fall short of energy and no longer depend on your dietary foods as your major source of energy.
Ketones are also a great source of fuel for your brain. Even more, they are capable of treating some brain conditions and diseases such as memory loss and concussion.
Furthermore, when you eliminate carbs, you can control your body's sugar levels, which helps to improve brain function.
16. Some people Face - Lazyness
While on Ketosis, I have seen some of the people start feeling laziness. As they are taking very less number of carbs they feel they have no energy,hence lazyness.
17. Sweating and chills
This is one if the things even I have seen while doing the Ketosis, I felt sweating and chills while eating only Fat.
There may be a case where this is not happening to you as of now, I believe it depends on the body type.
Reasons why people fail on the Ketogenic Diet
Lack of Preparation
Unlike other diets that are easy to start and stop, the keto diet requires plans, ideas, and strategies to make easier daily food decisions.
A keto diet requires planning and monitoring the number of carbohydrates you are eating. Such activities can be challenging and require time and effort. If you are not ready for this, you might fail on the keto diet.
Consumption of Excess Protein
While a keto diet tends to reduce your intake of carbs, the excess consumption of keto-approved meals can interfere with ketosis. In your quest to achieve ketosis quickly, ensure you limit your intake of foods such as steaks, bacon, burgers, sausage, and pork tenderloin.
Additionally, excess protein intake may affect your chances of attaining ketosis. Your food should contain mostly fat, no carbs, and moderate protein.
Intake of Excess Keto Junk Foods
With the rising popularity in the keto diet, there has been a rise in the number of several keto-approved products such as sweets substitutes and snacks.
Although these snacks contain other non-carb sweetening ingredients like bacon and erythritol, you can easily exceed your energy needs when consuming them.
Overall, although a ketogenic diet may have several short-term side effects, it has many long-term health benefits.
When you start a keto diet, you may experience or more of the effects highlighted above. The reason is that your body is adjusting to getting into ketosis. Once you get into ketosis, these effects will become less or eliminated.
While there are some remedies you can make use of to lessen the effects associated with starting a keto diet, such effects will go on their own.
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