It is common knowledge that the ketogenic diet is an effective way to lose weight.
However, that is not everything there is to it. The keto diet improves mental cognition, longevity, it balances hormones and even helps with diabetes and epilepsy.
Due to its numerous benefits, many people want to start it off quickly and reach the state of ketosis swiftly. Well, that is not something that can be sped up artificially. But there are things that can be done to help yourself enter that state faster.
- Let’s take a look at all the important information about the keto diet and how long it takes a human body to reach the state of ketosis!
The process in a nutshell
Reaching the state of ketosis is the focal point of a keto diet. Human body switches to the metabolic state, in this case, to ketosis and it starts using up ketones instead of glucose for energy. Of course, the obvious benefit is weight loss. That’s the main reason why the vast majority of people decide to follow the ketogenic diet. Instead of using glucose, this state makes our bodies use fat stores for energy.
When it comes to the needed time to enter ketosis, it depends from person to person. There is no exact number or something like that, it varies. People enter ketosis quicker or later on the basis of the body composition, activity levels and diet, of course.
But, even though there are no exact numbers, there are averages and limits that you should learn about.
How long does it take to get into ketosis?
Well, learn below and you’ll get an idea of how long it will take you.
- How long does it take to get into ketosis?
That’s a common question on the Internet and here you’ll see some approximate figures. Do know that time needed to get into ketosis varies from person to person due to physique, diet and level of physical activity. An average Joe needs at least one day to get into ketosis but just to be safe let’s say that it takes from 1 to 3 day to reach that state. This mode (fat burning mode) is not something easy to switch to.
So, what you need to do is deplete your body of its glycogen first. Stopping to take in carbs, you make the glucose levels drop and thus make your body turn to liver glycogen (glucose stores) in order to raise your blood sugar. From then on it’s like a chain reaction.
The insulin levels decrease as a response to low carbohydrate levels. This decrease instigates the breakdown of fatty acids along with their uptake in liver mitochondria.
In the next few days your liver will start making ketones so as to fuel your body.
Do know that your brain is dependent on a constant supply of energy (ketones in this case). The brain will mostly use those ketones in order to function properly.
Speeding it up
Seeing that we live in the age of tight schedules and deadlines and that we are all always busy, we got used to doing/getting things quickly. Many folks wonder if it’s possible to get into ketosis in 24 hours.
- How to get into ketosis in 24 hours?
- Is it possible?
It doesn’t matter if you have good reasons for this or not, do know that there is no exact science that will guarantee your body to reach this state in one day. There is no formula for that. But there are tips.
Take a look below!
- Intermittent fasting – you need to start fasting as soon as possible. Intermittent fasting goes with keto perfectly. When you prolong the time in which you eat your first meal, your body begins to enter a fat-burning stage (state of ketosis). If you decide to fast, do that while on a keto diet. It will significantly speed up the process. Try the following. Do not eat for 16 hours and then allow yourself to have an 8 hour eating window. This is called 16:8 hour fast.
- Exercising – if you’re not big on exercising, this may not come as a pleasant tip. However, exercising really helps with getting your body into a state of ketosis quickly. It is recommended that you do low intensity exercises at the beginning since intense exercise increases cortisol which makes it difficult to get into a state of ketosis. Once your body gets used to using fat for energy, then you can move on to tougher exercising.
- Coffee – caffeine helps with appetite reduction. Many people haven’t done intermittent fasting before learning about keto diets. If you’re new to this you should know that coffee can help. Drink a cup of coffee in the morning and you’ll help yourself deal with hunger cravings. If you don’t like coffee, you can take tea but it doesn’t do too good of a job. This tip only applies to the starting stages of your new dietary strategy. Once you get used to fasting every day, cut the amount of caffeine you drink.
- Sleep – when we sleep our body gets to repair itself. That’s why getting at least 7 hours of sleep a day at the beginning of the keto diet should be a priority.
- Limit carbs to 20g a day – before everything else, it is worth noting again that in order to reach the ketosis state, you need to restrict your carb intake. Therefore, you need to cut it to 50 grams per day or lower. If you want to reach this state faster, go as low as 20g. The 50 grams per day measurement is the standard recommendation since it is safe and comfortable.
Hopefully you have answer to these questions so far.
- How long does it take to enter ketosis?
- How to get into ketosis in 24 hours?
If you’re still not sure, revise the article before you proceed to the next paragraph.
Signs you’ve reached ketosis
You will notice these signs and symptoms once you reach the state of ketosis.
- Weight loss – this is probably why the majority of people want to learn about the keto diet. Losing weight is the most prominent symptom of the keto diet. It is possible to lose up to 10 pounds in the first week of ketosis. However, you shouldn’t get too excited about that since that’s only water weight. It will take more time for your body to cut excess weight (start burning fat).
- The so-called keto breath – once you start smelling nail polish remover, you’re in the state of ketosis. This is due to acetone, a ketone that gets expelled by the lungs. Do not worry, that is normal.
- Urine – this is a clear sign that you’re in ketosis. Take a ketone urine test strip and see for yourself. It will no doubt tell you whether you’re in the state of ketosis.
- Appetite is reduced – when we reach the state of ketosis, our nutrient levels get altered but so do hormones that control appetite. Ketones are the ones behind the appetite lowering effect.
- Insomnia – carb intake impacts sleep. Some people experience increase in time spent in deep sleep while some also claim that they face insomnia in the early days of their keto state.
- Fatigue – due to the electrolyte imbalances caused by the loss of water, fatigue can happen.
Carb intake limit
You’ve read about the time needed to reach ketosis and other requirements.
However, many wonder how many carbs they can eat and still stay in the state of ketosis. Most people enter the state of ketosis by lowering their carb intake to 20 to 30 grams per day. Once you get into that state, you can increase it to 50 grams a day.
If you’re an athlete, you can increase it even more. It all depends on your activity levels and physique. People who participate in sports should eat more carbs than the ones who aren’t keen on sports.
We’ve gone over the explanation of the state of ketosis, time needed to reach it, ways to reach it and carb intake limits. This can be used as a mini-guide if you were to start this kind of dietary strategy. No matter the reason, remember to inform yourself as much as possible about every effect of the keto diet.
If you have diabetes, epilepsy or similar conditions, consult a professional before making any changes to your current diet.
Also, it is worth repeating that exercising should be a practice that goes along with the keto diet. It will help you get into the state of ketosis faster and it will help with the effects. Especially if you want to lose weight.
So, be careful and follow the guidelines, stay on the track and be persistent. Only then will you succeed. The keto diet can be a powerful tool to change your body for the better.