On average, the keto flu will last about a week for most people, but you’ll usually start to see symptoms in the first day or two when you start to restrict carbs in your diet.
There have been reports from a few people where symptoms can last up to a month, but that’s pretty rare, and if you follow the guidelines within this article, you should see symptoms go away quickly.
Are you experiencing any of these symptoms?
- Craving sugar
- Fogginess or having trouble thinking, focusing on tasks, or concentrating. Take notice if you find yourself getting confused a lot.
- Vomiting or nausea
- Pain in areas like the stomach. Cramps fall under here as well.
- Any kind of muscle soreness
- Trouble sleeping
You may experience just a few of these symptoms, more, or none at all.
Everyone will be a little different in responding to this diet and how careful they are about following all the rules with it.
For one person, eliminating or restricting carbs for one day can cause flu-like symptoms for weeks.
Someone else starting the exact same diet may not feel anything at all, and that’s completely normal.
In fact, some people report feeling happier on the keto diet, so that’s a possibility as well.
Keto Flu Or Covid?
Symptoms of the keto flu can vary from person to person.
The most common symptoms seen are head or body aches, vomiting and nausea, and even getting constipated due to the dietary changes of the diet.
Normally happening within the first week, your symptoms may go away soon thereafter as long as you remain on the keto diet. If you stop suddenly, they may last longer due to switching the foods you’re eating once again.
Yes, that week can be miserable, just like with any flu, but following these remedies will help you move past this stage quicker.
Read more about the steps you can take to get rid of the keto flu.
Keto Flu Remedy Drink
I would not go to the store to buy a sports drink to load up on electrolytes.
Most of them have sugar in them to make them taste better, but even if they are sugar-free, they will not have the electrolytes you need to get past the keto flu.
You’ll need to make your own with things that you likely already have in your house.
Below is a homemade drink that’s helped a lot of people get back electrolytes by drinking it each day they feel symptoms of the keto flu.
- 12 ounces of warm water
- 1 tablespoon of your favorite brand of Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon, or you can use lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon of Pink Himalayan Sea Salt
- 1 package of a non-calorie sweetener like Stevia
What you want to do is combine everything together first and then stir in the Stevia as the last step.
You can either drink it right away as some people like the warm taste, or you can let the drink cool and consume it later in the day.
Don’t wait too long, though, because it will help make you feel better and hopefully reduce your symptoms.
How To Replace Electrolytes On Keto
One of the main reasons why people don’t feel well when starting the keto diet is because their body is shedding all of their electrolytes.
Since water weight is the first to go in the first week, you need to replace those vitamins and minerals within your body.
Let’s take a look at electrolytes your body needs and what roles they play in your body to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
It doesn’t matter what diet you’re on. Your body, to function properly, will need a mix of different minerals to perform optimally.
Magnesium is a major electrolyte that’s lacking when someone starts a ketogenic diet, and it’s responsible for over 300 enzymatic reactions in your body. (1)
Magnesium plays a role in:
- Nerve function
- Production of energy
- Protein synthesis
- Regulation of blood sugar
- Control of blood sugar
As you can see, if you have an imbalance here, it can affect a lot of your day-to-day activities and how your body performs.
One of the most plentiful minerals in our bodies, it’s critical to the health of our bones.
Calcium can also affect our blood flow, vascular muscle contractions, and vasodilation. (2)
A deficiency in this mineral can lead to many problems dealing with your teeth, eyes and can lead to osteoporosis.
Both a mineral and an electrolyte, sodium is very important in our bodies. It helps how our muscles and nerves work as well as keep our bodies fluid in balance both inside and outside of our cells.
The third most plentiful mineral in our bodies, potassium, can help regulate the fluid in our bodies and control signals our nerves send to contract muscles.
Mostly found in cells in our muscles, bones, liver, and blood, potassium is needed for our bodies to function well.
There’s a link between sodium and potassium, too. They have a relationship with one another that acts inversely.
So if you have higher levels of sodium, your potassium levels tend to drop. Vice versa is also true.
So, where can you get keto-friendly sources of electrolytes?
If you’re looking to consume more sodium, either add more salt or bouillon to your meals or consume tomato juice and pickles. Not necessarily together, though. 😉
Does your body need more potassium? Avocados, almonds, salmon, and other leafy greens are great to add to your meals.
Magnesium can also be found in salmon and other leafy greens. You’ll also find them in other fatty fish like Halibut, pumpkin seeds, and even cocoa powder.
When Does The Keto Flu Hit You?
In most cases, the keto flu will come on in your first few days of starting the keto diet.
On days 3 to 5, if you haven’t experienced any symptoms because you’ve followed the advice above, the likelihood you’ll get the keto flu drops down to almost nothing.
Fortunately, the keto flu is only temporary, and you’ll be feeling like yourself in no time.
Just follow the advice laid out above, and it’ll happen quicker. You’ll have more energy too.
Below are some common questions relating to the keto flu:
Can The Keto Flu Make You Throw Up?
Yes, nausea and vomiting are symptoms of the keto flu. However, if vomiting or nausea persists, you should seek out advice from your doctor about what to do.
Consult a doctor if you’re unsure about anything you’re experiencing while on the keto diet or any other diet for that matter.
Is Diarrhea A Symptom Of The Keto Flu?
It can be, yes. In order for your liver to break down the fat you’re giving your body, it needs to produce bile.
Since the ketogenic diet is a high-fat diet, extra bile is needed to be produced by the liver.
Bile is our body’s natural laxative, so when it produces too much, it will push out waste in our digestive tract much faster than normal. This leads to diarrhea.
Does The Keto Flu Cause A Runny Nose?
It’s important to note that you will not experience coughs, runny noses, or sneezing due to adapting to the keto diet.
These are symptoms of viral infections and can be the actual flu or the common cold.
As always, ask your doctor if you are unsure.