Transitioning In and Out of Ketosis
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There’s a lot of info out there about what happens when you achieve ketosis.
The problem is that there’s some of this info that’s confused, and some that is just flat wrong.
In this post I hope to clear up some of the confusion.
Transitioning to Ketosis
If you have been in ketosis for a while you probably don’t have fond memories of the first couple weeks.
And in the vastness of the internet you have probably seen some scary stories of transitioning from sugar burning to fat burning.
Some of it’s True
It’s true that converting from a lifetime sugar burner to being a fat burner can cause horrible stuff like the dreaded Keto flu.
The reason this first transition is so hard is that your body is in a sort of metabolic rut.
When your body has been burning only sugar for a very long time, your liver is not ready to make ketones out of fat.
Hormones Back in Balance
When you first stop eating carbs, it will take your body a little time to rebalance your hormones – especially insulin.
For a time, you might remain insulin resistant which can cause insulin production even without eating carbs.
Your initial transition from a high carb diet to eating more fat, less carbs and less often, may decrease your energy for a few days, it might even be a little painful.
And if you’re insulin resistant or type II diabetic, this transition can be longer and more severe.
But if this is where you are now, power through, it’s worth it.
In & Out of Ketosis is our Natural State
Our bodies are evolved to survive through feast and famine, good times bad times…all that stuff.
The one thing that we are not evolved for is abundant carbs and processed sugar all the time.
When you get onto a low carb diet and eat less frequently your fasting insulin levels will eventually reset to where they should be according to millions of years of evolution.
Remember, that up until a hundred years ago – our ancestors ate whatever was available, and because not that much was available, they didn’t have problems with insulin resistance, diabetes and obesity.
Our great grandparents were in and out of ketosis all the time because they didn’t eat six times a day.
When they had bread and pasta for dinner it probably kicked them out of ketosis – it spiked their insulin and that cleared out the blood sugar, and they were back to ketosis sometime during the night.
And normally they would stay in ketosis during the night until they ate again – they were in and out of ketosis everyday.
The idea of the Keto Diet – at least my version – is that you consciously get your insulin levels to their natural state, and that will allow you to be in a healthy ketosis most of the time.
You will also be able to transition in and out ketosis just like your great grandparents.
Even without eating any carbs, you will have some glucose in your blood because your brain needs it.
That’s why your body makes glucose out of protein and fat.
Regardless of how many carbs you eat, if your regular routine is to eat during a time span of less than 8 hours in any given day you will probably be in and out of ketosis at least once a day.
How to Cheat on Keto
When I’m on vacation I don’t go crazy on the sweets, but I eat what I want.
You aren’t going to blow up like a balloon if you have a slice of birthday cake.
You probably will get kicked out of ketosis for a while, and be back in ketosis in a couple hours.
There is nothing unhealthy about that. We are made to celebrate and enjoy some cake from time to time.
The first time you get into ketosis after being a lifelong sugar burner is probably gong to be a little rough, but you can power through. And it is worth it.
Once your hormones are re-balanced/reset to where they should be, in-and-out of ketosis is neither painful nor unhealthy.
You may need to stick to a strict low carb high fat diet for a while to get there, but once you get insulin levels where they should be, you can have some carbs.
If you feel like you’re backsliding too much, it’s not a big problem, just do a fast or switch back to strict keto for a week or so.
Until Next Week
Keto on Stay Safe and Enjoy,