A new you, a new flu.
Usually right after the exhaustion of the holidays, most of us get the flu. It’s the chills, the aches and usually just feeling like absolute poo-poo.
And when we start that beautiful brand new calendar over in 2018, the hopes and promises of a healthier happier you also come with it.
Much like working out and dieting, usually the whole “has anyone ever tried Keto” comes up within FB posts, groups and what not. Which I love. I love being able to say that I have been doing it two years and more than happy to point people to the correct information and supporting them (aka why I started the lazy ketotarian).
So while most this wintery season will get the flu, what is this “keto flu” you may or may not have heard about.
Well, it sucks. Just like the regular flu.
Above is a picture of my husband and I doing a Warrior Dash 5K up in beautiful Wisconsin. We had been doing keto for a week or so and I was like yah man, I feel good. To be honest, I hadn’t been training at ALL for this race (it was a bit rough for a runner like me as it was a lot of obstacles that required upper body strength of which I did not have). But I figured I was now eating really well and all that so, of COURSE I’m going to just KILL this 5k like I do all other 5ks. Hell, I run 5K’s at lunch. #crushingit
So the reality of this picture is that its at the end and I have no gas. I was sick the entire race. My husband at one point was literally pushing my ass up the gigantic ski hill (no joke it was huge and a deep incline for METERS). I was like…what? But….I’m eating well and like..I’m keto now. Like aren’t I supposed to just like be a prime athlete?
No Susan. You won’t be.
(PSA I don’t know a Susan, it’s the name I use for like……anyone who thinks contrarily)
So let’s backtrack to how do you even know you are in ketosis?
You can measure if you’re in ketosis via urine or blood strips, though it’s not really worth it (I mean c’mon I can barely remember to bring tampons to work monthly, what makes you think I am going to remember to bring urine or blood strips AND test it for ketosis). C’mon Susan. Plus from sources that I have talked to, the urine strips are considered pretty inaccurate (they more answer the question “Am I in ketosis?”), and the blood strips are expensive (up to $5 per strip).
Instead, I tend to use this short list of physical “symptoms” that usually let you know if you’re on the right track:
- You Pee a Ton. Keto is a natural diuretic, so you have to go to the bathroom more. Acetoacetate, a ketone body, is also excreted in urination and can lead to increased bathroom visits for beginners.
- Desert Mouth. The increased urination leads to dry mouth and increased thirst. Make sure that you’re drinking plenty of water and replenishing your electrolytes (salt, potassium, magnesium-do yourself a solid and get SmartWater).
- Ass Breath. Acetone is a ketone body that partially excretes in our breath. It can smell sharp like over ripe fruit, similar to nail polish remover. It’s usually temporary and goes away long term. If you drink your bullet coffee and do not brush afterwards you will have NASTY ASS breath which is a totally different level of hell to your significant other.
- Eat less & Wanna do more. Usually, after you get past the “keto flu,” you’ll experience a much lower hunger level and a “clear” or energized mental state.
So let’s talk keto flu friends…
Well it sucks. It’s not called the keto cold or the keto conversion or something really nice like that. It’s a flu and it feels like crap.
Basics of Keto Flu (no she doesn’t like Carmelmachiatos)
- Generally it will last ONE WEEK.
- It doesn’t affect everyone
- When it does affect you, it might be different from your SO or your BFF
- Some keto flu has been known to last longer; some shorter. This ain’t no OSFA situation, keto flu is NOT spandex.
- Zero energy
- Sugar cravings
- Brain fog
- Feeling like you are gonna toss all the cookies
- Difficulty getting to sleep
- The hot ass poops
- No poops
- ALL the poops
How to help get over the Keto flu:
- Eat more fat. For real. Stock up on things like avocados and fat bombs with little to no sugar.
- Eat more calories. Yup. You’re welcome.
- Eat a few more clean carbs. Yah a few means like three….not 8 Susan. Also what’s a clean carb you ask? Here’s my list of a few I would add carefully: blueberries, carrots, peas, and maybe a few legumes. You have to be REALLY careful when you add clean carbs that you don’t get yourself even more sick.
- Stay SALTY friends! Add more salt. Add it to your water if you can tolerate it. But if you can’t (like me) grab an 8 pack of SmartWater and just chug that stuff. Stay away from drinks that have electrolytes in them because if you turn that label around you will see just how much sugar is in them, and then you’ll have the other problem…you know what one I’m talking about. If you still don’t get there add it to your food.
- Drink the sea empty. Drink more water. You know on average you should drink half your body weight in ounces of water a day?? If you have a hard time drinking that much water, try putting it into a container with a straw and measured out amounts. That way you are like WOOOO!!!! Get it Susan!! And I don’t know if you know this but when you drink from a straw you usually drink faster. #funfactIprobablymadeupbutIthinkitslegit
- Exercise. I get it. You already feel like poo. But here’s the thing. Sometimes it can help shake you out of a funk. Don’t go balls out like do a 5k or anything, but maybe a nice brisk walk around your favorite mall or grab a friend and go up and down the aisles of Costco.
In the end friends, know that it’s not the end of the world when you get the Keto flu. It just blows.
As always I hope this was helpful and a least a bit entertaining.
Eat well friends.
The Lazy Ketotarian