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Old 07-06-2013, 07:18 PM   #1
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Ketosis...Necessary for weightloss?

Hi.
I am in my 8th straight day of ketosis. I began low carbing about 5 weeks ago, didn't do it right and restarted Father's Day.
The week it took me to get back into ketosis was *miserable*, but I toughed it out and like I said, I am now in my 8th or 9th straight day of it.

I feel *terrible*. Joints hurt, muscles ache. No energy. I am on a diuretic blood pressure combo med, so I try to eat as much extra sodium as I can without causing excess fluid build up.

I do not know how much longer I can stand this. Is it possible to lose weight on a lower-carb diet and not enter ketosis?

Also, where is my "ketosis high"? I feel the exact opposite of great.

I know I have an emotional attachment to food, but the past couple days all I can do is obsess over having a sweet drink or a plate of rice or bucket of popcorn...I even dream about it!

SO combined with how physically awful I feel and my cravings, I am about one grocery store visit away from throwing in the towel.

Any thoughts are appreciated!
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:29 PM   #2
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you said you are on a diuretic blood pressure med. did you speak to your doctor before going on this diet? I know in the Atkins books he always suggests taking to your doctor about low carb if your are on diuretics.... low carb is a diuretic... this is prob why you feel like crap..
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:35 PM   #3
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No Dr. I have ever spoken to pushes anything other than high/carb, low fat, period. Last time they suggested pills.

The thing is, the diuretic med is designed to do what a low carb diet does naturally...which is flush excess fluid....so this point has always confused me. I don't understand how the two would be mutually exclusive or even counter productive.

Thanks so much for responding.
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:37 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krave79 View Post
No Dr. I have ever spoken to pushes anything other than high/carb, low fat, period. Last time they suggested pills.

The thing is, the diuretic med is designed to do what a low carb diet does naturally...which is flush excess fluid....so this point has always confused me. I don't understand how the two would be mutually exclusive or even counter productive.

Thanks so much for responding.
I should clarify they suggested diet pills since my bp is well controlled. I am really afraid of phentermine after using it before.
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:39 PM   #5
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I suggest you increase your sodium intake. Some people don't get enough, and because of the effects of ketosis, they have an electrolyte imbalance. Increasing sodium, magnesium, and potassium will probably help you a great deal.

One way some people find effective is to drink broth, either homemade or store bought. Not the low sodium kind, though! Electrolyte water might help too.

What you're feeling isn't abnormal, a healthy subset of people experienced it, but there are ways to address it, you don't have to white knuckle your way through.
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:43 PM   #6
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To answer your original question- no, it's NOT necessary to be in ketosis to lose weight. Plenty of people lose weight on other diets without being in ketosis.

The reason that diuretics and Atkins are counterproductive is because you lose water/minerals from the pills and also from the diet and that can leave you feeling wiped out. If you decide to continue atkins you should take a mineral supplement, and drink more water and broth.
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:45 PM   #7
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This is one of many videos and book quotes addressing why adequate sodium is crucial in a low carb plan.

Go to youtube and search: Role of Salt Intake in Nutritional Ketosis
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Old 07-06-2013, 07:58 PM   #8
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It's not at all necessary to "be in ketosis" to lose weight.

Plenty of people are "in ketosis" and are not losing weight, and plenty of people are not "in ketosis" and are losing or have lost weight.

Dr. Atkins was pretty clear about how it's really lipolysis--the burning of our own fat stores--that we want to happen. The goal is not to "be in ketosis" but to lose weight.

I'm not saying you should throw in the towel, but I don't know why you are having these extreme physical symptoms. I'm sorry you're feeling this way and I hope it gets better.
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Old 07-06-2013, 08:07 PM   #9
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I do use table salt now, whereas I never have before. I noticed when I first tried LC I may have went over board with the salt, I had some swelling. So now I try to keep an even keel.

I notice people say , they fell out of ketosis. To me that is terrifying because of how truly awful I feel when I *enter* ketosis. I definitely would never cheat out of that fear alone.

I would like to find a happy medium of being able to indulge occasionally without having the terrible "crashing" feeling I felt before.

I am beginning to realize this may be a pipe dream

Thank you for your responses, and the video.

I have been taking ALIVE! for Women multi's...hopefully they will kick in sooner rather than later
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Old 07-06-2013, 08:19 PM   #10
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I've been in ketosis for a few days (started atkins 6-29) and I feel better than I have in months. I have no idea what the "induction flu" feels like, and If I got it, I'm not sure I'd do low-carb....I occasionally use the ketostix, just to see if I'm not having too many carbs....I will bet it's your meds.
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Old 07-06-2013, 08:20 PM   #11
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could you be low on potassium?
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Old 07-06-2013, 08:25 PM   #12
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I wondered about potassium, I checked out supplements but all I could find only supplied like, less than 5%, of RDI.

I was thinking even if it was Induction Flu, this is an awful long time to feel like hell...from Father's Day til now with only slight improvement.

My first time in ketosis was nothing like this... and it was only a few weeks back so nothing in my routine has changed.
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Old 07-06-2013, 08:39 PM   #13
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your electrolytes could be out of whack from the diuretic effect of the diet alone--Dr. A. suggested that low carbers not take diuretics while on the diet. That may be something to consult your doctor about--in the meantime, you may feel better by taking some potassium, calcium, and magnesium.

also--be sure you are drinking enough water

sometimes, when I feel particularly drained, I find some extra B vitamins help

and for that feeling that you are one grocery store trip away from trouble--you can take chromium picolinate and l-glutamine

the l-glutamine is really essential to me-because I am truly addicted to carbs-- (I've read that they even give this supplement to alcoholics to help break the addiction) and it's truly one of those supplements where I can feel the difference (the direction says to take it before each meal, but I take it whenever...)

flu-like symptoms during induction are not uncommon and can last longer for some people than others, but they do go away

long-story short (or relatively short) your body is switching its metabolic pathways from burning glucose for energy to burning fat for energy--it's quite a major switch, but the outcome of the process is worth it---decreased hunger, increased feelings of well-being and energy, and, finally, some control over those food addictions--combined with some meaningful weight loss--so it's worth the process, you jut may need to do some minor problem solving along the way.

that makes this forum an invaluable tool--read, read, read read
and good luck!!
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Old 07-06-2013, 08:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krave79 View Post
I would like to find a happy medium of being able to indulge occasionally without having the terrible "crashing" feeling I felt before.

if you are getting a "crashing feeling" after eating carbs--that could be symptomatic of hypoglycemia---all the more reason to go low-carb

you could try upping your protein intake a little


and sometimes, a big stalk of celery, a little hunk of cheese, and a few olives can revive you--there's some fat, some electrolytes from the celery, and fat from the olives
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Old 07-06-2013, 08:51 PM   #15
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Susie- I cannot thank you enough for those suggestions, as well. It makes sense.

I am Native American, relatively young (34) and need to lose at least 65 lbs (I have lost 11lbs since restarting on Father Day). Anyway, my boss swears up and down I am at least pre-diabetic, whatever that means. I definitely feel terrible when I eat sugars. Wheat in particular affects me, even down to digestion. I am not sure what hypoglycemia is, but your comment reminded me of something my boss said to me. I even shake and cold sweat.

My last cursory blood sugar check showed me within normal ranges, however.
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Old 07-06-2013, 09:07 PM   #16
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hypoglycemia is a pre-diabetic condition
when my mom had symptoms, she would start shaking and almost black out when she was hungry...but there are a number of symptoms, some more severe than other
you may want to google it
but again,
(many doctors will categorize ALL people who are significantly overweight as pre-diabetic)
and the best way to correct that problem--is the low carb diet--so it will serve you well to read as much as you can about that...

my friend developed gestational diabetes--and her doctor prescribed a really strict low carb diet-like Stillman's diet

when I need to get into ketosis fast, I do Stillman's, which is about as low carb as you can get--
or the 1972 version of Atkins---you may get through that induction flu quicker...
anyway....
please, please, please give it a chance because the induction flu is a step in the right direction---
shakes from eating carbs is a step in the direction of a diabetic hell you don't need
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Old 07-06-2013, 09:16 PM   #17
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Read up on Hypoglycemia. I had it super bad before Atkins. I had it even as a thin child. It is now completely under control with this way of eating. I used to shake, get cold sweats and have difficulty speaking. I would also get black spots in my vision like the world was closing in on me. Hypoglycemia is the primary reason I got fat. I would eat every hour just to avoid getting low blood sugar. It worked but it made me fat and had me pre diabetic.

Like others have said, what supplements are you taking? You need to take those recommended in the book and drink lots of water and keep your salt intake up, especially in the beginning. Thing will settle down in a week or so. Good luck on your journey.
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Old 07-06-2013, 09:17 PM   #18
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I really need to read up on the different types of LC diets. I purchased Atkins New Revolution a few weeks ago, but someone in my office picked it up and never returned it, LOL I got so far into the book as Induction, so I have stuck with that. I am currently reading Sugar Shock, but it is very pro whole grain. I stay well under 20 net carbs most days...never over 25.

Thanks again!
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Old 07-06-2013, 09:21 PM   #19
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Stevie- that describes me and carbs exactly!

I tried Slim Fast...and stayed so hungry and "weird"...I thought it was lack of will power. One day I had Japanese for lunch...shrimp sauce, rice...and hardly made it back to work. Something in my head clicked that day...and the very next day I gave up all sugars.

Thank you for the advice. The influx of info, combined with how truly terrible I have felt...it can just be incredibly overwhelming.
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Old 07-06-2013, 09:39 PM   #20
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The cravings WILL get better if you can push through it. Mine were horrible and led to binging. I have used various amino acid supplements to help me through the bad cravings. Now, I experience hunger, but its not on the level of my former cravings. I learned that forward was the only way to go as even just a little giving in would set me back and make the cravings worse. Good luck!
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Old 07-07-2013, 01:48 AM   #21
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1) I really think a doctor's advice would be good, to keep you safe since you're on diuretics.

2) Aching muscles is a classic sign of potassium deficiency. Your system isn't getting enough potassium, so it is robbing the muscle tissue to get it for digestion/metabolism. PLEASE take potassium in foods or in pill form. I have seen 595 mg potassium supplements, but 2 to 4 of the 99 mg ones will work, a couple times a day.

Pork, beef, salmon, broccoli, yogurt, avocado, spinach, mushrooms, and cocoa are great sources of potassium.

3) if you're short on magnesium, the body will take more of its potassium to help do the stuff magnesium is supposed to be doing.

Good food sources of magnesium are nuts, artichokes, spinach, fish, cocoa, and a lot of herbs like dill, basil, and spearmint.

4) the body works differently on low carb/ketosis. We run through a lot of sodium even without taking diuretics. A lot of LC gurus suggest supplementing with a full-salt broth.
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Old 07-07-2013, 02:03 AM   #22
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I am definitely going to have to look into it.

It is 4 am here and tired as I am, I am too uncomfortable to sleep.

I also took out my calendar. I am so foggy headed that I lost a week. I have been in *actual ketosis* (not just LC) since June 21st... so that's like 16 days of feeling this badly with no perceivable end in sight if I continue at this rate.

Thanks for the positive thoughts and ideas
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Old 07-07-2013, 04:02 AM   #23
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krave, I just ran across this in "The Art and Science of Low Carb Living" by Phinney and Volkek:

If you are eating less than 60 grams of carbohydrate per day, you need to purposefully add 2-3 grams of sodium to your daily intake (unless you are still taking diuretic medication under a doctor’s direction for high blood pressure or fluid retention). And if you do hard or prolonged exercise (enough to make you sweat), one of those ‘grams’ needs to be consumed within the hour before you start. At or above 60 grams per day of carbs, this prescription becomes optional. However if you go out planning to exercise for 30 minutes, but find you have to stop after 15 because you feel lousy or light-headed, try it the next time with a cup of broth within an hour before exercising and see how things go.
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Old 07-07-2013, 05:17 AM   #24
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krave79-
In response to your original question, ketosis is NOT necessary for weight loss. Many plans (Weight Watchers, for example) do not involve ketosis, and many people lose weight well on such plans.

Since you are not feeling well and believe ketosis may be a problem for you, why not increase carbs to get out of ketosis and see if you feel better?

Personally, I need to eat very low carb because I am extremely carb sensitive, and one key that this is right for me is that I feel great and have great labs, too. If you are not feeling well, it's worth checking to see if ketosis is the issue.

I should add that despite the fact that I thrive eating very low carb, way back during the low fat 'craze' of the 1980s, I lost 40 lbs easily eating a very high carb, low fat diet (Ornish), so even for someone like me, ketosis is not necessary for weight loss.

Last edited by Leo41; 07-07-2013 at 05:18 AM..
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Old 07-07-2013, 06:58 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krave79 View Post
Hi.

I feel *terrible*. Joints hurt, muscles ache. No energy. I am on a diuretic blood pressure combo med, so I try to eat as much extra sodium as I can without causing excess fluid build up.

I do not know how much longer I can stand this. Is it possible to lose weight on a lower-carb diet and not enter ketosis?

Any thoughts are appreciated!
What are your blood pressures? It sounds to me, like the case on page 314 of Protein Power by Dr. Eades, in which a patient of his was on 3 different blood pressure medications and then went on low carb. The rapid reduction of serum insulin levels triggers rapid and substantial diuresis which also drops your blood pressure.

IMO, you should consult with a doctor that is familiar with and approves of low carb and ketogenic diets who can manage/adjust your blood pressure medications to take into account the effect of low carb eating. Also, it is worth noting that some medications may interfere with potassium elimination, so you should check with a pharmacist or a Pro-LC doctor before taking any potassium supplements.
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Old 07-07-2013, 07:11 AM   #26
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Krave , look for the lo salts in the supermarket. They use potassium in a higher dose than supplements give you and cost less. Also if you do not use sodium normally you might be underdosing and locarb diets deprive your body of salt so what you see as sufficient under normal circumstances might now not be.
If you can afford it supplement with magnesium too. It made the detox a lot easier for me.Careful though not all magnesiumis created equal.You do not want magnesim oxide or magnesium sulfate. One is not well absorbed and the other gives you the runs.
Good luck and hope you feel better soon.
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Old 07-07-2013, 07:53 AM   #27
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While waiting to speak to your doctor, try just adding full sodium chicken broth (2 cups) and see how you feel.
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Old 07-07-2013, 08:59 AM   #28
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You might talk to your doc about getting off the diuretic...or at least making it so you can take it as needed rather than with your blood pressure med.

My doc put me on hydrochlorothiazide a few years back when my blood pressure was high (talking over 150/90). Since I dropped right back down to my normal of 110/70 within days, it was apparent it was due to excess fluid.

I had to stop taking it when i started low carbing because the diet itself acted like a diuretic. Before I stopped taking it, I had the same symptoms as you. Definitely talk to your doc. If he/she won't work with you, sounds like a good time to find a new one.
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Old 07-07-2013, 10:15 AM   #29
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I agree with folks that the combination diuretic plus the low carb is like giving you misery.
If you diuretic is prescribed, you likely need to consult you dr. I never had low carb flu, but I have had to greatly increase my sodium intake and potassium (I take multiples of the 90mg tabs), but I've come around to considering sodium most important for me. Seems like you've got the diuretic compouding you body's cry for more salt. A double whammy.
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Old 07-07-2013, 10:16 AM   #30
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I personally have hereditary high blood pressure that of course totally went out of wack after I started eating all the junk...
I take a HBP medication everyday that has some diuretic and I felt like crap in the first days of switching to LC. Now, I am feeling better and I am losing weight. Still, I have some weird mild headaches at night.
Doctors around here are all against LC...They push and push High Carb/low fat and try to scare you.
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