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The Keto Flu and How to Avoid it

Starting the ketogenic diet is a dramatic change for your body. Not everyone gets it, but it is common for people who remove carbohydrates from their bodies to get something called the keto flu. You can experience things like headaches, muscle aches, and cramping. You pretty much feel like you have a bad hangover for a few days. This happens due to an imbalance of sodium, magnesium, and potassium in your body.

Good news! You can prevent the keto flu and save yourself a few miserable days. I can promise you that you will not continue to feel crappy forever and paying careful attention to managing proper levels of sodium, magnesium, and potassium in your body will go a long way towards preventing the keto flu.

You can drink a cup of high sodium broth or a bouillon cube dissolved in hot water twice a day when you’re just starting out to ensure you’re getting enough sodium. Taking magnesium supplements and drinking a lot of water will also help ease your transition into keto.

Also, adding 1/4 teaspoon of “No Salt” potassium supplement to a large bottle of water helps. “No Salt” can be found in the salt aisle at the grocery store or online. You can also find slow-release potassium supplements but only take at the advice of your doctor. My doctor did advise this for me and I was able to take a 600 mg potassium supplement daily.

To be honest, I did none of these things to prevent the keto flu when I first started, so I ended up with headaches around day 3 to 4. Once I got through it through my first week I began to feel fantastic!

If you cheat and kick yourself out of ketosis, you can expect to go through the “keto flu” each time. I would strongly encourage you to go through this process once and stick to the diet until you achieve your desired weight loss results. I have put in my time with this and 95 weeks in, I can promise you that cheat meals are not necessary when you have such a large variety of options.

For more information on the ketogenic diet, connect with me on Instagram: @ketoincanada, Youtube: ketoincanada, Facebook: IAmKetoinCanada or my website where I offer a beginner’s guide and group support: Iamketoincanada.com.


Joanna Wilcox is Canadian Health and Fitness Influencer from Woodstock, Ontario.


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