Before getting into greater detail on the signs that you are in ketosis, you should understand what ketosis is in the first place!
Ketosis is a state our bodies enter once we cut out sugar and carbs out of our diet so that our metabolism begins producing ketones instead. These newly-produced ketones then become the main fuel source, which at the same time supply us with needed energy and burn fat.
There are lots of signs that show you that you are in ketosis, and you may have already unknowingly experienced some of them. They usually start occurring in the first week of your keto diet, though this can vary from one person to another.
Not all of the signs that show you're in ketosis are pleasant, but at least you know you're doing something right!
The most common sign that you have reached ketosis is bad breath. It is notably unpleasant but is a signal that you’re on the right track, nonetheless. You may have bad breath due to the elevated ketone levels your organism starts to produce, which then results in the forming of acetone in both your urine and your mouth.
Most dieters’ breath gets a fruity smell, but don’t worry - just like most of the other signs you’ll hear about, this passes in a week’s time. If you look up ketogenic diets, you will almost certainly come across the term “keto flu.”
Though it is listed just as one sign that you’re in ketosis, it actually has several side effects. Some of them can be drowsiness, fatigue, migraines, dizziness, irritability or brain fog.
The flu usually passes in a week, and the reason it happens is that your body is getting used to producing ketones to use as an energy source, but is yet to produce enough to sustain you. This results in a feeling of weakness and tiredness before the next sign kicks in. And the next sign is going to be your favorite by far!
Once keto flu passes and your metabolism gets used to using ketones as a fuel, you will have more energy than ever. Your focus and your energy levels will boost up like never before!
Another sign that you have reached ketosis is a loss of appetite. This is closely connected to a hormone called ghrelin, also known as the hormone of hunger.
Once you cut or minimize your carb intake, production of ghrelin greatly reduces, making you feel full for a longer period of time. This definitely doesn’t sound like something that would happen when you are on most other diets, right?
But hold on, not so fast! Not all of the signs you’re in ketosis are going to be as great as increased energy and appetite suppression. Due to the dramatic change in your body’s main fuel, you may become one of the dieters who experience digestive issues when they just start off their diet, so you will have to endure either diarrhea or constipation.
Of course, you can try to avoid any of the two by gradually taking up a keto diet, rather than aggressively changing your body’s primary source of energy. Our bodies may be powerful, but they still need a transition period in which they’ll get used to the sudden change!
Just like our metabolisms need a little heads up before changing the energy source they function on, so do our brains!
Due to our bodies becoming ketone-fueled machines instead of carb-fueled ones, lots of people experience a shorter period of insomnia once they reach ketosis. This happens because the sudden lack of carbs causes our stress hormones’ level to rise up, resulting in a lack of sleep. But there’s no need to worry, as this sign usually passes faster than the other ones, so you’ll be sleeping like a baby in no time!
Once your body starts to release the water that was, up until you started the diet, held in fat cells, you will also experience a great increase in urination. Your body will, at the same time, begin releasing more water and sodium due to a decrease in your insulin levels. There is really not much to complain about since this is the most reliable sign you are in ketosis.
Releasing a lot of water in one way means that it has to enter your organism in another way, right? Well, once your urination increase kicks in, so will the thirst increase. And, since you are not only releasing water but electrolytes as well due to a low intake of magnesium, potassium and sodium, you may experience having dry mouth from time to time. Overall, it’s nothing a glass of water can’t fix. Or maybe a bottle will do the trick?
Most of the keto dieters choose to get specialized meters that are designed to calculate the levels of beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) in their blood, in order to be sure that their metabolisms are producing an optimal amount of ketones.
Using a ketone meter is by far the most accurate way of knowing whether you are in ketosis or not, so if you are really serious about your diet, make sure to get yours as soon as possible!
We have saved the best for last because you are guaranteed to enjoy every second of this final sign you’re in ketosis. You guessed it - it’s weight loss! This sign happens in the first week of your diet, but it may signify something you weren’t expecting.
No, you are not actually losing fat yet, you are losing water! The said water is then released into your blood and, from then on, acts as a fuel. The second this new fuel burns out, you will start burning fat rapidly.
These are the top 10 signs your body is in ketosis, but keep in mind that we are all different, and probably won’t reach these sings at the same pace.
Though some of them are inconvenient and borderline embarrassing, you can eliminate the symptoms by adding more ketones - either naturally or by using exogenous ketones. Happy ketosis, everyone!
Guest post by Sam Hoffman
About the Author
Sam is the medical consultant with Konscious Keto who helps healthcare and fitness businesses reach their full online potential. Sam is passionate about ketosis diet. His current focus is helping healthcare businesses create better online consulting service. He frequently writes about the latest advancements in the healthcare and fitness industry.
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