What is Ketosis?

Pamela Zink

You might have heard of the term Ketosis”. The Keto diet is named after it.


Eating a strict Keto diet will induce Ketosis in your body. But what does that mean, exactly?


What is Ketosis, and how does it feel?


Medical Definition


Technically speaking, Ketosis is what happens when your body doesnt have enough carbs to burn to make energy.


Instead, your body makes ketone bodies”, which are produced from fatty acids. 


Think of it like this: instead of eating that jelly donut you ate for lunch yesterday, once you reach Ketosis, your body will start eating the fat around your belly, or the fat from the juicy steak you ate for lunch.


There are many ways to get to Ketosis.


Eating a strict Keto diet is not the only way to induce Ketosis.


Ketosis is a natural phenomenon that occurs whenever the body is very low on carbs. 


You can enter Ketosis by fasting for a long time, or by actually starving (although this might not be the most fun option). Also, pregnant women sometimes enter Ketosis due to an increased demand for calories from their growing babies.


In any case, the amount of carbs eaten per day has to be very low. The maximum amount varies from person to person, but is usually between 20 and 50 grams (about one to three slices of bread). For comparison, you could eat 20 servings of KBosh’s Cauliflower Keto Crusts and stay within that limit.


Many Keto dieters choose to eat exactly zero carbs, so they can be sure they dont go over their daily limit.


Ketosis may feel uncomfortable at first, but it gets better.


The experience of Ketosis varies from person to person. It would feel very different to one person who eats a ton of sugary junk food, than it would to someone who already has a fairly healthy and low carb diet.


Typically, when you first enter Ketosis, it is a bit of a shock, and you might feel some very unpleasant symptoms:

  • Low appetite
  • Bad breath
  • Fatigue
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Insomnia

Together, these are sometimes called the Keto Flu.


But heres the good news: if you stick with it, the negative symptoms usually go away within days to weeks.


Once the body adjusts to its new state, it is common to feel much more focused and alert, and also to rapidly lose weight.


Of course, this is typical for people who deliberately induce Ketosis. If you are starving to death on a desert island somewhere, your body will never adjust to Ketosis!


Those who are prone to epilepsy will often find that they have fewer strokes, or none at all, under Ketosis. Thats why the Keto diet was first invented: to treat epilepsy patients.


Also, some people who have Type 2 diabetes may find that Ketosis helps them manage blood sugar.


Summary


Ketosis is what your body does when you stop eating carbs. 


It makes your body switch from burning carbs, to burning ketones, which are made from fatty acids. 


Ketosis is experienced by anyone who is fasting or eating a Keto diet. It may feel uncomfortable for a few days to weeks, but eventually the body adjusts to Ketosis.

If you or any other person has a medical concern, you should consult with your health care provider or seek other professional medical treatment immediately. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something that you have read on this blog, website or in any linked materials.