Why do I feel so tired or twitchy after being in ketosis?

A couple of things may be going on here that are relatively easy to address.

Here’s a list of common causes of fatigue and twitchiness after being in ketosis for a while:

  • Mild dehydration. Ketones act as a diuretic causing you to excrete more water and minerals than you would normally. To counteract this, make sure you are drinking plenty of water (more than 2.7 liters per day for women and more than 3.7 liters per day for men).
  • Mineral depletion. You may be low in sodium, magnesium, and potassium. Consider adding extra salt to your food and taking a magnesium and potassium supplement. Aim to get more than 5 grams of unrefined salt per day, 3,500 mg of potassium per day, and ~400 mg of magnesium per day for men and ~310 mg of magnesium per day for women.
  • Not Sleeping Enough. If you are not getting an average of 7.5 hours of sleep per day on any given week, then you will feel more tired and experience more twitching than usual. To ensure that you will get quality sleep, turn off all blue light emitting electronics at least an hour before the time you want to fall asleep and make your room cool and dark like a cave.
  • Too Much Stress. Chronic stress can cause mineral and hormonal imbalances that increase your tiredness and frequency of muscle twitching. To reduce your stress levels, you can try exercising daily, going for a walk, meditating, and/or napping.
  • Not Eating Enough. By restricting your calories to the point where you don’t have enough protein and energy for your cells, you will increase your stress levels, deplete your body of minerals, and feel tired/twitchy as a result. You can find out how much you need to eat on the ketogenic diet by using our keto calculator.
  • Hormone Dysregulation. For some people, carb restriction can be too stressful and cause increased cortisol levels and decreased thyroid hormone levels, which lead to fatigue and muscle twitching. If this sounds like you, consider increasing your daily carb limit until you feel healthier and more energized.

If the symptoms still persist after implementing the relevant suggestions, please see your doctor to discuss the necessary testing and treatments.

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