Keto, sometimes called ketogenic or low-carb diets, is gaining in popularity. However, is it safe? Many people try diets before understanding the consequences. Like any significant diet change, when you begin a ketogenic diet, you will likely experience some side effects. This is because your body is quickly trying to adapt to the process. It can be a bit of a traumatic experience for the body.
The tactic of the ketogenic diet is to trick the body into switching fuel sources. It causes the body to use its own fat stores as opposed to the glucose derived from carbohydrates. As this occurs, many side effects can be experience:
• Depleted Salts
• Change In Bowel Movements
• Leg Cramping
• Loss of Energy
• Bad Breath
These are the common side effects experienced. Some can experience one or more. The side effects are often temporary and remedied.
Everyone is different and when starting the keto diet, some adjust quickly and others take a bit longer. As your body is used to relying on glucose energy, switching to ketones for fuel can require quite the adjustment process. On average, the process can take approximately 4 weeks.
• Slower thought process/brain fog
• Spells of dizziness
• Chronic fatigue
• Accelerated heart rate while laying down
• Intensified cravings
Salt Level Depletion
Hydration levels can begin falling as glucose levels are depleted. This causes water to enter the blood stream and then be filtered through to the bladder. While this occurs, you will also start to deplete the salt levels in your body as well.
Bowel Movement Changes
As you change your diet drastically, your gut must learn to adapt to the new food intake. This can lead to constipation during the adjustment process. Increasing fiber can help with this. Also, ensuring you drink plenty of water.
Although the leg cramps caused by the ketogenic diet can be subdued, they can sometimes be more painful. This is due to the depletion of salt levels in your body. Low sodium levels in the bloat can cause a condition called hyponatremia. Staying hydrated and getting enough salt can help alleviate this issue.
There can be a lack of energy when on the ketogenic diet. This is caused by a fluctuation in glucose levels. As it isn’t being harvested from the diet, it changes blood sugar levels. However, as ketosis kicks in, the body will start harvesting its own body fat for energy. Once this occurs, the liver will be able to produce as much glucose as is necessary to maintain proper blood sugar levels and energy should normalize.
Upon entering the fat burning zone of ketosis, sometimes people will experience bad breath. It is sometimes referred to as keto-breath. This is because ketones can be released in the breath in a sort of perspiration. This also escapes through sweat and urine. Acetone is a form of ketone. When released, it can lead to metallic taste in the mouth.