The keto flu
Rawpixel.com/Shutterstock The keto diet is an ultra-low-carb and high-fat diet that restricts total carbohydrate numbers to just 20 or 30 net grams of carbohydrate per day. That’s the equivalent of a single piece of fruit or half a bagel. When you cut carbs, your body’s preferred source of energy, you require your body to suddenly shift to fat for fuel. This raises blood levels of ketones and puts you in a state of ketosis—hence the name “keto diet.” Once this shift, happens, you will lose weight, but you may also have experience so negative side effects. This is commonly referred to as the keto “flu.”
“The keto flu is a very real side effect as the body transitions to a ketogenic diet,” says Suzanne Fisher, RD, LN, in South Florida. “Brain fog, fatigue, dizziness, and insomnia are common with the keto flu. Here’s what it’s really like to follow the ketogenic diet.
Low blood sugar
Syda Productions/Shutterstock Once ketosis is established, most people experience more stable and lower blood sugar levels. Low-carb diets can be an effective way for people with type 2 diabetes to get a handle on glycemic control—and carb monitoring has long been thought to be an effective way to control blood sugar—though one study concluded low-carb diets are not necessarily a better long-term strategy than other diets. Anecdotal evidence abounds from people with type 2 diabetes who have used the keto diet to stabilize their blood sugar and were able to quit taking their diabetes medication. But it’s not recommended that people with diabetes begin the keto diet without first talking to their doctor.
During the first few days of the keto diet, your body will struggle to adapt. You may want to ease into the diet by gradually cutting carbs in the first few days, in order to help your body adjust to fewer carbohydrates.