One of the questions people who are new to the LCHF (keto/ketogenic/low carb) diet frequently ask me is: how do I know if I’m in ketosis? What are the main signs of ketosis?
Everyone’s different and while some may experience all of the symptoms of ketosis, some might only feel a couple of them. Some feel none at all. There are basic signs and symptoms that indicate that you’re in ketosis. But please note that I’m differentiating between the signs of keto flu (covered in the post I’m linking to) that many experience in the first days of a ketogenic diet, and the feeling of being in ketosis when the flu has subsided:
The main signs of ketosis
- Dry mouth (eat more salt and drink more water to alleviate this). See my keto breath article here.
- Weight loss. Yay!
- Metallic taste in your mouth or a strange taste in the back of your throat. Some describe it as fruity or a little sweet.
- A kind of “buzzing” feeling that’s hard to describe. Almost euphoric at times.
- Different kind of urine smell, stronger too!
- “Ketosis breath” – It can range from being a little sweet to being almost like you’ve had a drink of alcohol.
- Less appetite. You can go for hours without eating and don’t feel very hungry.
- Increased energy. If you don’t experience it try to eat more fat. Also, drink more water and watch your electrolytes.
- A ketone strip you pee on shows a positive result. There are also blood ketone meters, or the popular ketone breath test, that give a more specific result. (Pro-tip: If you get the pee strips, cut them in half 😉 ) But do note that even with a positive pee strip it’s not 100% certain that you’re in ketosis. A very dark positive result may only indicate that you’re dehydrated.
For me personally, the main signs of ketosis are hard to miss. I just feel different! It’s hard to describe. Fortunately I don’t get ketosis breath, but I do have a different taste in my mouth. I also get that buzzing feeling, dry mouth (when I forget to drink enough), less appetite and increased energy. That is, unless I forget to eat. However, my husband had a different experience and I’ve heard many versions and stories of people’s experiences with ketosis. So keep in mind that everyone’s different and even if you don’t have the signs of ketosis I describe in this post it doesn’t mean that you’re not 😉
If you’re eating low carb, lost some water weight already or went through the dreaded keto flu I’ll bet at least a few $$ that you’re in ketosis.