The Cyclical Ketogenic Diet (CKD)

The cyclical ketogenic diet (CKD)

Be careful of what you eat, even on the CKD.

I wanted to write about the cyclical ketogenic diet, it’s a sort of variations of the keto/lchf diet I’m doing. I haven’t really thought about doing CKD myself but I might consider it when/if i start working out (I have ankylosing spondylitis so it’s really hard) or if I ever get to maintenance level. Ok, WHEN I get to maintenance level. I better not be so pessimistic ๐Ÿ™‚ I might also look into Paleo, I think it’s keto + allows some fruit and stuff so it’s higher carb.

The cyclical ketogenic diet (ckd) is a low carbohydrate diet that allows short periods of high carbohydrate intake. Typically, the dieter would cycle through very short periods (1-2 days) of low fat, high carbohydrate, and high protein intake, and longer periods (5-6 days) of high fat, low carbohydrate, and high protein intake. The diet is very popular among bodybuilder and fitness professionals who use it to maximize lipolysis and minimize lipogenesis but who also want to preserve muscle mass. This means that the body is getting the majority of its “fuel” from fat instead of glucose.

Science suggests that including a few high carbohydrate days will help to increase anabolic hormones such as testosterone, growth hormone, and the insulin-like growth factor 1. These specific hormones are key in muscular developement.

Additionally, noncyclical low carbohydrate diets have a high “dropout” rate. During the first few days of ketosis, the period where your body has depleted its stores of sugars and is running on fats, people can feel foggy, irritable, and tired. Some people have headache, feel thirsty, and have muscle pain and soreness. The body has a strong craving for carbohydrates. Therefore, adding a day of high carbohydrate intake offers a way to beat those feelings. Though, because the stores of glucose have already been depleted, the carbohydrates that are being eaten go directly to refilling the depleted stores and are not made into fat.

I think the risk here is that eating high carb foods for a couple of days after being low carb all week will perhaps result in another episode of keto flu every time you switch back to low carb, and I can only imagine how badly my body will react to eating carbs again. If any of my readers have experience with the cyclical ketogenic diet, please tell me how you feel on it and if I’m right about this ๐Ÿ™‚

Also, do you think you can do it? Some of us (me included) are hardcore carb junkies. I’m not sure I could take my evil monster out for a walk 2 days a week. I think I might prefer to keep it in its cage (I wrote cake first, freudian slip?) like I’m doing now because it’s working really well. No cravings.

Another thing. Like the little kitten on the picture is asking – can you have cake (or whatever high sugar unhealthy thing) on the cyclical ketogenic diet? I’m sure you CAN, there’s nobody banning anything here. But consider that it´ll still be high in calories and a complete shock to your body. I’d rather go for some fruit, whole grains etc. There’s plenty of carbs in them and they’re by far a healthier option.

After about a month of starting the cyclical ketogenic diet, most dieters will find that aerobic exercise is no longer necessary. The body has been primed to burn fat automatically. Therefore, more attention can payed to building muscle and toning exercises. I’m sure that’s a matter of preference though.

I´ll give this some more thought when I’m down to my goal weight. 23 kilos (50 pounds) left.



  1. Rachel January 30, 2013
    • Lilja January 31, 2013
  2. Cas February 3, 2013
  3. Tena Lengacher June 20, 2013

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