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If you are familiar with the process of ketosis and you are already practicing a keto diet, you probably wonder if there are any signs you are doing this right.
Every diet or a major change you are about to introduce to your body affects it in certain ways. Switching to keto will also impact your body in many ways. Although some of them are referred to as side effects, they are some of the stages you’ll need to pass through. You can avoid the complete shock by gradually including and excluding foods in your daily diet and by that you’ll avoid some of the negative effects. However, when you start witnessing the positive ones you’ll forget all about it.
The ketogenic diet aims to influence the body to produce ketones as an energy source rather than using glucose. Given the fact that carbohydrates are the primary source of glucose, for this process to happen, the keto diet restricts them from the everyday diet. This restriction induces the body to start using other sources of energy i.e. the ketones.
The process of ketosis has its own signs and symptoms that will help you determine whether you are doing the ketogenic diet right and if it is working well for you. Some of them may be unpleasant but some of them may be the reason you’ve started the diet in the first place.
As mentioned before ketosis is a metabolic process that occurs when the body lacks glucose. In these cases, the body starts using the stored fat as fuel. Moreover, stored fat cells are converted into fatty acids and after that into ketones. Most of the body’s and brain’s cells can use ketones as an energy supplier. Therefore, this process leads to burning stored fats, causing the body to lose weight.
Dietary changes almost always result in stomach upset and digestive complaints. Therefore, abruptly switching to keto may also cause digestive issues that will result in either constipation or diarrhea.
It is recommended to drink plenty of water and eat fresh vegetables to alleviate the constipation symptoms. However, it is advisable to use a probiotic supplement to encourage gut flora health, which is essential for a healthy organism.
Bad breath is often a sign that you have reached full ketosis. However, bad breath may sometimes be associated with some illnesses and other conditions inside the body. Excluding these possibilities, the unpleasant smell in your mouth is caused by elevated ketone levels in your body.
There is no way to prevent the bad breath but it also may improve with time. Brush your teeth several times a day to reduce the odor.
When switching to a ketogenic diet by instantly cutting on the carbs, rather than gradually restricting them, a person will surely get some bad headaches.
The cut on carbs results as a lack of sugar and glucose for some of the brain cells. The brain needs some time to adapt to the keto diet and start using ketones as fuel. Therefore, headaches may be experienced in a day or two or they may persist up to 10 days. Consult a doctor if you experience bad headaches for a longer period of time.
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Weakness and Fatigue
The biggest challenges when switching to ketosis come in the first and the second week of the diet. That is how much time our body needs to adjust to the change.
Weakness and fatigue can be one of the biggest issues for new dieters, however, there is no way to avoid them since the new body fuel is not as quick and powerful as the glucose.
After several weeks of the diet, tiredness will be gone and you’ll be rewarded with increased energy levels as never experienced before.
Fatigue may also be a result of nutrient deficiencies. Therefore, it is advisable to use keto-friendly supplements and quality keto shakes.
Many keto dieters often report difficulties falling asleep or disrupted sleeping in the first days and weeks. Some of them find it hard to fall asleep and experience all the symptoms of insomnia. Some may experience changes in sleep patterns, hence a need for a nap, several times throughout the day.
After this stage is gone, your sleep will improve and you’ll feel well-rested and energized. In fact, this is due to the reduction of sugar in your diet.
When you get in the later stages of the ketogenic diet, you’ll notice how, your constant need for food, the hunger, and the cravings are nowhere to be found.
Carbs are quickly digested and instantly sent as a fuel for the body. Some of this energy is used in the next several hours and the one that is not, it gets stored into the body. On the other hand, our body does not store proteins. Moreover, the high in fat foods, included in the keto diet, are digested slowly and the energy produced is evenly spread throughout the day. This also results in a prolonged feeling of fullness and satisfaction.
The ketones themselves may also affect the brain in reducing the hungry feeling.