2 months keto but still don't have much energy

(Anna ) #1

I’ve been patiently waiting for this boost of energy that everyone is talking about after they get fat adapted, but it hasn’t come yet, although I am fat adapted and am producing ketones. I haven’t hiked in the mountains since before going keto and to tell the truth, since going keto just walking my dogs for an hour 2 times a day is making me tired. I seem to have very little energy now.

Is it because I’m not overweight and have no fat reserves? Maybe I’m not eating enough fat? I am on keto mainly for migraines and I am already at my ideal weight. I am counting carbs, but I have not been counting my fat intake, because foods that have no nutritional labels, how do you even count that. Like those pork chops I had the other day that I didn’t trim the fat off. I have no idea how much fat those had. Butter and olive oil is easy to figure out, bacon and other processed meats aren’t too hard if they have a nutritional label, but meat?

I’ve heard that if the fat is not on your body it has to be on your plate. I just can’t imagine how I’d add more fat to my plate. The only thing I can think of is eat more bacon with every meal or take shots of olive oil with each meal. I already eat 1-1.5 sticks of salted butter daily.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #2

Carb withdrawal affects different folks differently. The range is nothing to near prostrate; from none to days to weeks to months. Fat adaptation is not an on/off switch. It’s a process that takes time, although most people reach what I guess you could call an ‘inflection’ point within a few weeks or a few months where it has progressed enough for one to function normally again. Ketone synthesis does not indicate the degree and efficiency of fat burn, only that it is occurring sufficiently to synthesize ketones. And that occurs very quickly. Efficient fat burn takes longer. When you cut carbs, if fat burn is not yet sufficiently efficient to do the job you will feel weak and lethargic.

Without knowing what and how much you’re eating, yes, you might not be eating enough. When you eat to an energy deficit one of the mechanisms you have to slow you down to use less energy is getting consistently tired and/or weak. I think we all go through an early stage where we wonder how on earth can I possibly eat enough fat. Like those of us who have passed that stage, you too will figure it out. The world of fat awaits your discovery.

On the other hand, you may be eating enough, just not utilizing it efficiently enough yet. Two months in is really not very long.


I don’t know what could help you but I never experienced much difference in energy or brain clarity on keto at all, whatever I did (I didn’t do everything though, we will see if carnivore will be any different). But I didn’t expect those, it’s surely individual. Not everyone experiences every common changes. Energy is too complicated anyway, I have super low energy if I am not active at all or if I don’t get enough sunshine. I have lower energy on lots of carbs but that’s just tragic, I still have not very much energy if I do my best. Nothing extreme but nope, I am not among the very energetic people.

I easily eat very much fat if I don’t keep myself from it (I usually do, I love fat too much and it doesn’t satiate me well). It doesn’t seem to make me more energetic. My metabolism surely quickens as I have the genetics which makes it very hard and super slow to gain weight even if I massively overeat but it doesn’t help.
But if I ate very little food, I surely had super low energy so maybe you really eat too little, who knows? Maybe not too little fat (so much butter… no, I don’t think so) but too little protein…? If I eat adequate protein (generously so it’s probably more than enough for the processes in my body), I can easily feel I ate too little and it’s bad for my energy. So I often eat high protein and I am fine then (compared to myself).

I don’t know the fat content of my meat either. But we both eat plenty of other food and anyway, what if we don’t track? Our body should tell us if we still need something, to some extent, at least.
And you don’t know what numbers your body likes and it’s subject to change anyway. I eat until I get satiated and satisfied and if I still don’t have enough energy, it’s probably not because I ate too little.
But some people get satiated too easily on keto. They don’t notice if the food is enough. Or they get full with not the right food… Don’t you have any other ideas apart of fat? It really seems you do eat plenty of fat, not like I have any idea about your energy need of course…


I couldn’t resist, I have a special relationship with fat.

[quote=“amwassil, post:2, topic:96990, full:true”]
I think we all go through an early stage where we wonder how on earth can I possibly eat enough fat. [/quote]
I actually wondered how on earth I can keep my fat intake low enough (I still focus on it a bit, using as little added fat as possible - 5g per day now -, not thinking about heavy cream too much and so on). It was my second biggest problem on keto (first was stopping eating vegetable dishes and keeping my veggies under my comfortable minimum). My years on low-carb made going below 200g fat way easier (it’s way too much for me) and keto helped even more as it’s correlated with my carb intake but I am still careful. And I still eat a bit too much, usually.
I am sure I ate significantly more fat on high-carb and I still miss fat a bit, after 9 years. I eat well, I enjoy my woe, I don’t even resist temptations only these hard-wired ones. I even have fattier days, they help a lot. But bulking will be way better, I guess.

It doesn’t seem to me Anna has problems with eating a pretty nice amount of fat. Butter, fatty meat… It’s great, it should be enough under normal circumstances.


This might be off topic, but I used to have migraines and they went away during my psychoanalysis. It seems it had something to do with perfectionism, and trying to please my father, who was quite pedantic.

(Anna ) #6

Since fat is used for energy and I have very little energy, fat is the first thing that comes to mind. I think I’m eating enough food/calories. Since going keto I’m actually eating more food now. I’m not a big person, I’ve never required lots of food. I’m eating lots of protein as well. For breakfast today (which I eat at lunch) I had 2 eggs, a pork chop, 2 breakfast sausage links, avocado, 1/4 c macadamias and 3 tsp MCT oil. Back when I used to be carb-burner, my breakfasts were a banana and some bread with butter, and on that I could hike no problem.

(Anna ) #7

I did read about those cases. I am not a people pleaser. As a matter of a fact, I’m opposite, I really don’t care what people think of me or my ways. I’m pretty far from perfection and not looking to reach it in any way or form.

(Anna ) #8

My regular sources of fat are 85% ground beef, bacon, eggs, lots of butter, salmon, salami, sausage, MCT oil, macadamia nuts, avocado. I unfortunately do not eat daily, if I could eat cheese, I’d be eating way more saturated fat because I love dairy, love cheese. I also do not eat meat that has huge amounts of fat attached to it, other than bacon. I like bacon, but I don’t eat it everyday. I think some days I eat way more fat and some other days not as much.

When I started the keto diet two months ago I was getting really full quick and was never hungry for dinner, and would force myself to eat that second meal. Now, I can eat that same meal and I still have space for some nuts. It’s almost as if my body adjusted to the high fat, and where before the same meal made me so full, now it’s just right or sometimes not even enough. And 6-7 hours later I’m hungry for dinner.


Oh I definitely did not know I was a perfectionist either. But I was very hard on myself. How should I have known I was being hard on myself if that was all I ever knew? I thought it was normal and did not realise that there was a lot of self-punishment and self-reproach involved.

(Anna ) #10

That’s what I though. I just didn’t expect it to take this long. Although I was such a carboholic, eating every 2-3 hours from morning to night, little meals and snacks. I do IF now, since I’ve never been a big breakfast eater and I’m not hungry in the morning. So I eat at 11am and then 6 hours later. I bet this is a complete shock to my system. I will stay patient.

(Susan) #11

Dr. Phinney has studied endurance athletes (the type that run for 24 hours just to see how far they can get.) They can perform adequately after a month of keto, but anecdotally, they have told him that they aren’t back up to their peak performance until about 3 months on keto. This is in his you tube talk Dr Stephen Phinney - 30 years studying low carbohydrate diets for athletes. The URL is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cST99piL71E
If it’s helping with your migranes, I’d just keep going and see what happens. I’ve been on for 7 months and haven’t noticed a boost in energy, but I have major depression as well, so it’s complicated.

I get (more than enough) fat from my fat bombs - 1/3 coconut oil, 1/3 cream cheese, 1/3 unsalted butter with lemon juice, lemon extract and sweetener to taste.

(Vita) #12

It took me about 3 months to reach the point of endless energy. I kept wondering why. People kept saying I wasn’t fat adapted though there was no way I wasn’t. Finally it just started out of nowhere. I almost wonder if it might have to do with insulin resistance and the time it took my insulin levels to go down and my cells to become more sensitive. It’s just a thought I had. Do you have insulin resistance?

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #13

@truecrimeandketo There’s no mystery. Fat adaptation is not an on/off switch. It’s a process that takes time, although most people reach what I guess you could call an ‘inflection’ point within a few weeks or a few months where it has progressed enough for one to function normally again. Of course, if one has metabolic disfunction that complicates things. None the less, you will be more fat adapted at 12 months than you were at 3 months.


Eat more and wait

(Little Miss Scare-All) #15

Dude. Lemmie just say that I was thinking this same thing and I just kept feeling like either people were drinking the keto kool aid, or tricking themselves into this whole fat adapted energy boost, because I just felt meh and tired or the same as before.

But literally, one day, it just changed. I woke up one random day and just had boundless energy and its been pretty consistant now. It actually does come! It does. And it will come to you, too. One day youll wake up and feel energy, and it just happens out of the blue sometimes. Just keep it keto and it will happen. Really. Believe the hype.

(Davy) #16

I"m in my 7th week, and same thing here. I’ll have random spurts of energy but nothing real steady. Guess like everyone said, we have to be patient.

(Katie) #17

Not having a lot of body fat and adequate intake of fat could be a reason why you are experiencing low energy. I ran into a situation like that at one point. Also, are your electrolytes in check?

If I may ask, how tall are you, how much do you weigh, and how much protein do you think you eat?

Just recently I have switched to buying fattier cuts of meat and I all around feel better. Look for cuts that are visually fattier, such as ribeye, New York strips, chuck steak, skirt steak…I think that it is a good idea for you to try to prioritize fatty meat and eggs. Some people find that they get a ‘buzz’ from organ meats such as liver. If someone is vitamin deficient, I could see why that might happen.

You are right, it is difficult to estimate meats. Sometimes you can get a good ballpark estimate by Googling it. For example, when I Googled “chuck steak nutrition”, the information below appeared.

Additionally, food is not everything. How is your sleep? Stress? Mental health? Those are also major factors that play into daily health and energy.

(Scott) #18

I am a runner and it took me about three month to feel like my energy came back. The good news is it keeps getting better as I have been keto for 18 months. Fat you can adjust as needed to get enough calories without weight gain. I eat eggs, bacon, sausage, cheese and use MCT oil in my coffee. For an extra kick I leave the bacon grease in the pan and add butter before pouring the eggs in and mix it all up. Hang in there because your energy will return but not in a single moment. I will be more like “hey, running doesn’t suck anymore, when did that happen?”

(Anna ) #19

When I meant a “boost in energy” I didn’t mean more energy than before. I was meaning the same energy I had before I went keto. Since my keto flu ended, I’ve had very low energy. My legs will hurt if I’m doing laundry and have to go into the basement several times in a row. My legs feel as if I had hiked in the mountains for 5 miles, but all I did was two loads of laundry :frowning:

(Anna ) #20

Not that I know of. I was never tested for diabetes and only started to check my blood glucose after I went keto. My blood glucose is normal.