Keto Flu is Kicking You
So you’re starting keto and have heard a ton about the Keto Flu. You’re drinking a ton of water, even adding pinches of salt to your big ass canteen or nalgene bottle full of the good ole’ H-deuce-oh.
At this point, you’re in a dark place. I feel ya, and I’ve been there. You’re desperate and ready to cave in and start eating before it’s noon and throw all your grand plans away. Well, the good news is, there are a few things I have personally found beneficial during this transition period.
Ranging from exogenous ketones and electrolyte or key mineral supplements to the topic of today’s post: supplements for suppressing or controlling appetite.
I thought Keto Eliminated Cravings + Hunger
But…but…wait…I thought…why am I hungry?
Yep, hold your hoses petey. Low-carb diets and especially those with a high fat component like keto absolutely elminate cravings for sugary, high carb snacks or meals and do suppress hunger. But this doesn’t happen until after the hard part.
The keto flu is your body’s transition period into fat adaptation, or switching the engine over to buring fat instead of carbohyrate as it’s primary fuel source. So naturally, as with anything else, we’re going to be resistant to change.
What’s literally happening is your body is like a hot furnace ripping through glycogen (stored form of glucose or carbohydrate) stores in the liver and muscles. This usually happens within 48 hours of carbohydrate restriction and at that point, the transition sets in, and your body starts working to recalibrate it’s metabolic energy production processes.
True fat adaptation can be as quick as a week or two, or take up to 6 months. Now, this doesn’t mean that flu symptoms last that long. Usually those are gone within 5 to 7 days. The lengthy process of fat adaptation is likely occuring for you and you don’t even realize it. But the longer you’re in ketosis (nutritional ketosis is defined as blood ketone levels of 0.5 mMol/L) the better your body gets at burning fat for fuel, meaning the next time you try ketosis, the transition will be easier.
Now getting back to the point. Once you make the shift to burning fat the keto flu symptoms ease and you’re suddenly satiated (not hungry), can look at most sweets and treats and turn the other way, are starting to feel mentally clear.
For those of us who want to engage in Intermittent Fasting, though, even once you’re in ketosis for an extended period of time there are days where you just want to consume calories before noon right?
Take me, for example…I woke up today and checked my blood – ketones were 0.8 mMol/L and glucose was 91 – that’s pretty good. I’d like ketones to be higher, but considering the high protein chicken wings I ate last night for the superbowl, I’m ok with this. But I have to say, I was hungrier than normal and I really wasn’t looking forward to waiting until noon to eat (i’m currently doing 16/8 intermittent fasting, with an 8 hour feeding window from noon to 8pm).
But I’m feeling good, and feeling fantastic cognitively as I write this post at around 10:50am EST. For the first week or two of my intermittent fasting, this would have not been the case. My hunger was making it tough to focus, so I started looking for something to help.
Garcinia Gambogia for Appetite Suppressant
Back in my senior year of college I was coming off of a foot surgery where I sat on my ass and had rehab all summer. So I put on a few L-B-z from riding the couch for the summer and was really focused on getting back to form. I played collegiate lacrosse and was the captain of my team, so setting the tone during fall ball was important. Coming back out of shape wasn’t an option.
I had done some research on natural appetite suppressants and fat burners and came across Garcinia Cambogia. Back then I knew much less about general nutrition and was purely feeding the machine for twice daily workouts and intense practices. So it’s hard to say whether this natural substance actually helped at all.
In 2017, while struggling to get fat adapted and make it through days of intermittent fasting, I remembered Garcinia Cambogia and said you know what, let’s give this shot. I ordered some off of Amazon by Garcinia Labs called Garcinia Cambogia 95% HCA 100% Pure Garcinia Extract 1540 MG.
Now, I know very little about this company. Typically that’s a no go for me on my checklist for buying a supplement. But because I had tried it and had no issues back in the day, I had no problem using a small, 30 day supply to get me through the hard days of intermittent fasting.
So feel free to try this out as your easing into Intermittent Fasting, Ketosis or any other Low-Carb nutritional protocol this year. As always, best of luck, and feel free to comment on this post or reach out to me directly with feedback or thoughts.