If you are just taking the first steps towards achieving a state of ketosis, you should not rush. Ketosis diet is better to start gradually to give the body to get used to a new state.
If you have previously practiced ketosis but left it because of a vacation, a cheat meal, or drinking alcohol, several proven, effective, and simple ways can help you return to ketosis. Stay with us, and you will learn what is ketosis diet, how to get into ketosis, and what to do for starting a ketosis diet.
No matter how trite it may sound, but the first and most important step to achieving ketosis is to limit the intake of pure carbohydrates daily to 20-25 g. It will allow the body to process the glucose supply quickly, and then begin active burning of fats for energy. People who follow a low-carbohydrate diet are often in ketosis because it is the first step to start the ketogenic process with the best exogenous ketones.
Ketosis can only be achieved by burning glycogen, which is stored in the liver and muscles. Glycogen is the energy reserve of our body, the body burns it first, and after that fat is consumed. One of the easiest ways to burn glycogen is to do more cardio workouts. Brisk walking, dancing, running, cycling – all it will have an active impact on glycogen consumption.
Exercise on an empty stomach
Exercising on an empty stomach will enable your body to use the accumulated glycogen, and then fat, as the body will not spend energy on digesting of recently taken food. Strength training on large muscle groups (legs, back, shoulders) will be especially useful on an empty stomach, it will increase glycogen consumption even more, which will significantly increase the level of ketones. There is one point – fasting exercises should not be practiced in the first weeks of a low-carb diet.
Fasting will help your body use up glycogen stores faster because during training, you will spend it actively, and there’s no more restocking. Be attentive to the general condition of the body. It is worth starving if you are confident in your own abilities.
Consume enough fat
Eating enough foods that contain saturated fats (olive and coconut oils, avocados, fish, nuts, etc.), as well as limiting carbohydrate mass in your ketosis diet, will help your body quickly adapt to the process of burning fat. Fat will be transformed into ketone bodies to provide energy to the body.
During a ketosis diet plan, the body goes through many biological adaptations, including decreased insulin and increased production of ketone bodies. Here are ten signs, which will almost with a 100% chance to help you to understand that you are in ketosis.
Many people complain of bad breath when they switch to low-carb nutrition. It is, in fact, a side effect caused by the increased production of acetone ketones. When the liver increases the production of ketones and reduces the production of acetone, breathing will return to normal.
TIP: ketone respiration is a sign that the body is rebuilding to ketogenesis.
Many people use low-carb diets, including the ketosis diet for weight loss. In the first week, the weight goes away very quickly. It removes the water with glycogen stores. Well, and partly, the fat goes away. Further, the weight will decrease steadily, depending on a calorie shortage. The plus is that calorie deficiency may not be as strict as on common diets. Therefore, on a keto diet, it is essential to come to two meals a day.
TIP: rapid weight loss on a ketosis diet occurs when you are just starting ketosis.
INCREASED KETONES IN RESPIRATION AND/OR URINE
Another way you can use to measure your ketone level is the breathing tube. The amount of acetone in exhaled air rises when the body is in ketosis. The problem is that there are 1-2 manufacturers of breathing tubes, and they are often difficult to get. In addition, there is no universally accepted measuring scale. In addition to this tube, you can use test strips to measure the level of ketones in the urine. However, this is a very unreliable way. You may have many ketones in your urine, but your body will not be in ketosis. Conversely, you may be in deep ketosis, and there will not be enough ketones in your urine.
TIP: of course, you can measure the level of ketones by respiration or urine, but these methods are not accurate.
REDUCTION OF HUNGER
Many people report a decrease in hunger on a ketosis diet. There are suggestions that it is due to an increase in fat. Fats keep satiety well, better than carbohydrates and proteins. Ketones themselves can also affect the hungry centers in the brain, which in turn affects appetite. In general, the appetizing background is linear, without sharp jumps, as happens with everyone who eats the usual carbohydrate food. Insulin jumps, brutal hunger sets in.
TIP: a ketosis diet reduces appetite, and if you do not have sharp feelings of hunger, then you may be in ketosis.
ENHANCING ENERGY AND CONCENTRATION
Very often, people are haunted by fog in the head, a feeling of tiredness, “flu-like” sensations of aches in the body when they just start any low-carb diet. It scares people, and they “jump-off,” returning to their usual diet. However, you should not be afraid. This is a natural adaptation of the body, and everything will pass in 10-14 days. It is the so-called “keto flu.” When it passes, the body goes to a new level. Attentiveness rises, the energy level is usually stable. When you reach ketosis, the brain starts using ketones instead of glucose. It is a cleaner source of energy, as it is 60% fat.
The effects of ketones on the brain helping people with brain diseases, concussion, and memory loss have been tested under medical conditions:
- Ketones for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease;
- Therapeutic effects of ketones in brain injuries;
- The effect of beta-hydroxybutyrate on people with impaired memory.
TIP: if you went through keto flue, you got increased concentration. Your energy level is consistently high, which means that you are most likely in ketosis.
Switching to a natural ketosis diet can be accompanied by a number of side effects. Among them are weakness and fatigue. Because of this, people often stop a high-fat ketosis diet, without having received everything that full-fledged ketosis could give them. It usually takes 7-30 days to achieve complete ketosis, sometimes longer, depending on your age and body characteristics. To reduce fatigue, take extra electrolytes, which are lost due to the rapid drainage of water held by carbohydrates in the body. Use 2000-4000 mg of sodium per day, 1000 mg of potassium, and 300 mg of magnesium. Any ketosis diet doctor will tell you it is a good choice.
TIP: you may initially suffer from fatigue and energy loss, but it will pass when you adapt to ketones. At this time, you should not engage in sports activities.
SHORT-TERM DECREASE INEFFICIENCY
Muscle glycogen is depleted in the first couple of days. Namely, it was the source of fuel for all exercises with high intensity. After a few weeks, performance will return to normal. In sports where stamina is required, a ketosis diet can be especially beneficial. In ketosis, when there is no glycogen, fat is burned immediately during exercise. The “first 30 minutes” rule can be forgotten! Moreover, it is great news! Studies show that people who chose keto and sports burn 230% (!) more fat compared to athletes who are on a normal diet.
TIP: you may lose your performance in the gym for a short time, but after the initial phase of adaptation, you will return to normal and be able to improve.
Switching to a ketosis diet implies a significant change in food. A common side effect at the beginning of a keto diet is constipation and diarrhea. These problems should disappear after the adaptation phase, but it is important to remember which foods can cause digestive problems. For example, an excess of nuts can cause diarrhea, and an excess of proteins can cause constipation. Do not forget to eat many green, leafy vegetables; they have a lot of cellulose.
TIP: these side effects of ketosis diet occur frequently, but not always.
At the very beginning of the ketosis diet, you may have insomnia and frequent rises in the middle of the night. However, with adaptation, these symptoms usually disappear. Only if it is not caused by other reasons, for example, chronic congestion syndrome. A keto-adapted organism sleeps better than before.
TIP: exclude food 3-4 hours before bedtime, do not drink coffee, alcohol in the afternoon, take a relaxing bath, turn off the phone and computer at least an hour before bedtime, and you can avoid insomnia.
Conclusion: The body gets used to the new state in the first week of the ketosis diet. As soon as it accepts such a diet as normal, the average ketosis diet results per week will be approximately 5 lbs. Moreover, you will get a good mood and long-term effect, which lasts even after the end of the diet.
Please share your keto experience with us in the comments below. We would like to know your results. Do you use a ketosis diet calculator? What is your list of foods for a ketosis diet?