Yow! Let’s talk about the low carb flu. Yes, it is real. Some people go through it, some people don’t. But it isn’t a good reason to give up.
For me I just need to avoid starches and sugars, eat more meat and veggies…
Now, I’m not necessarily on any specific diet, but I am getting some of the low carb symptoms. My energy levels are much higher since I started this, but body is having a hard time adjusting.
I’ve felt foggy and disconnected, like my brain is lagging, and I have had some flu like symptoms like achiness. Not the end of the world. I will admit it is horrible.
But before I started this I felt bloated quit often, tired, rundown, and lethargic. Higher energy is a plus. I no longer feel bloated and I’ve lost 4 pounds in a little over a week. The low carb flu is slowly fading away and hopefully my brain will click back in soon.
Some articles I’ve read say that this could last 2-3 weeks. Here’s some info to help move past the low carb flu.
Many people (not everyone!) who start a low carb diet experience what’s called the “keto flu” or the “induction flu” in the first few days while the body is adapting to burning ketones instead of glucose. The basic symptoms are:
- upset stomach
- Lack of mental clarity (brain fog)
It’s called the “keto flu” for a reason: you feel sick. I’ve gone through it and it wasn’t a pleasant experience. Fortunately it only lasted 4 days (2 of them were pretty bad) but then suddenly I woke up feeling much better, less hungry and my energy level was really high and consistent throughout the day! While at one point (or three or four) I thought to myself: “what the serious F am I doing? I’m going to die!” but I plowed through it and when it was over I didn’t regret a thing because what I gained mentally and physically was 100% worth it.
How long will the keto flu last?…
What is “Low carb flu”?
If you’ve ever dramatically reduced your carbohydrate intake, you might have felt it already: it’s that first few days of headaches, brain fog, crankiness, and constant, dragging exhaustion. At some point, you know the magic is going to happen and you’ll start feeling like a human being again, but the transition period is really rough. It feels like having the flu (hence the name), only you’re not sick; you’re just cutting carbs. Low-carb flu can include any of the following:
- You feel fuzzy and foggy, like your brain just isn’t working right. You might have a pounding or throbbing headache.
- You’re exhausted, cranky, and irritable for no reason.
- Going to the gym feels like an insurmountable challenge. If you do make it, your performance is completely down the drain.
- You’re ravenously hungry, tearing into everything in sight.
- You’re craving anything with carbs – bagels, pasta, pizza, sandwiches, mashed potatoes, candy…