The Keto Flu: Symptoms, Causes, and How to Avoid It

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flu , electrolytes , hydration , keto , symptoms , weightloss

The ketogenic diet is well-known to increase energy, improve concentration levels, and stabilize mood. Unfortunately, many people experience the opposite effects when first switching to a ketogenic diet. They feel exhausted, suffer from headaches, and are irritable. They go through the so-called keto flu.

The keto flu signifies that the body is still adjusting to burning fat stores in the body. It is most common on a “dirty” keto diet, and it can be largely avoided when following a well-formulated keto diet.

What Is the Keto Flu?

The keto flu occurs when people switch from a high-carb diet rich in processed foods, grains, and sugars to a ketogenic diet that is moderate in protein and contains complex carbs from vegetables and nuts. Because this switch can cause flu-like symptoms, it is called the keto flu. 

Despite the similarities to the virus influenza, the keto flu is not caused by a virus and is not dangerous. The keto flu is a consequence of carb withdrawal that people experience when starting a ketogenic diet.

Fortunately, the symptoms are only temporary and last for a few days or a maximum of a couple of weeks.