When you start the keto diet to activate ketosis, you’re likely to experience benefits. But because of keto flu, you can feel worse before achieving the benefits of a ketogenic diet. It’s helpful to know the duration of symptoms that are associated with keto flu and when they can appear.
The Keto Flu Timeline
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Genetics, age, health, habits, and other individual factors affect the intensity of symptoms at different amounts of time. Take a look at this average timeline for the keto flu.
The Beginning: 1-3 Days
Keto flu usually kicks in by day three of the diet. You begin to feel more sluggish, tired, and cranky. Nausea, light-headedness, and headaches are common symptoms. You may also have cravings for those carbs you’re missing and you’ll feel “off.”
About Half-Way Through: 4-5 Days
You’ll likely start experiencing more flu-like symptoms by day five. Because your body is working hard towards ketosis, dehydration and mineral loss causes headaches and muscle fatigue. Some people also experience constipation and stomach cramps, with or without diarrhea. You also have the same symptoms from the beginning as well.
Almost Over Keto Flu: 6-7 Days
By day seven, the symptoms will start disappearing but you’ll probably continue to feel sluggish. As your body approaches the state of ketosis, you’ll start to feel normal and the worst symptoms will be gone.
The End: 8-12 Days
At the end of the keto flu, you’ll feel like a new person. Your body will continue adjusting but without the experiences of flu-like symptoms. Your energy will return, sleep becomes better, and carb cravings are non-existent.
Ways to Shorten the Keto Flu
- Make sure you’re getting enough sleep.
- Help your body activate ketosis faster by trying intermittent fasting. You also might need to eat more fat.
- Adjust your carb intake based on your needs. Cutting carbohydrates too fast can make symptoms worse, so it’s okay to ease into the keto diet.
- Drink plenty of water. You’re more likely to experience dehydration during the first few weeks of the diet.
- Combat cramping by increasing your fiber intake. If you experience diarrhea and stomach cramps, fiber can help bulk up your stool and decrease the frequency of diarrhea.
- Because your body excretes minerals more quickly during the beginning of the keto diet, you’ll need to replenish them with electrolyte supplements or keto-friendly electrolyte drinks.
- Change your exercise routine a bit. It’s okay to exercise, but avoid strenuous activity and let your body rest when you’re experiencing the worst symptoms.
Once you’ve survived keto flu, you’ll feel proud of your perseverance. Many people think something is wrong and don’t understand the process your body undergoes to adapt to the keto diet. Hang in there and use these tips to experience keto flu relief faster.
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