Can keto cause shortness of breath?


(ketogenicforums) #64

Hi Karen. I had never dieted in my life & started a very strict keto diet 3 years ago to lose 20 pounds. My boyfriend & I ate almost solely meat, fish, cheese, eggs, nuts, & fats. Within the 1st few weeks, I was so out of breath upon physical exertion (not at rest), that when we were planting trees on his 2 acre yard on a hot day, I literally couldn’t walk more than 30 feet without stopping for a rest to get my breath. I had to plop down on the lawn to catch my breath. He had zero side-effects, btw. My breathlessness was extremely odd, to say the least, because I’ve always been “athletic” & had been hiking a lot before starting the diet & while I’ve never had excellent lung capacity (even while playing several varsity sports in high school) I’ve never had trouble catching my breath after walking 30 feet !!? I knew it was ketosis because it coincided shortly after the start of my diet & that was the only thing that I had changed in my lifestyle (& it was an extremely strict diet keeping carbs under 20g). After a few weeks, my breath normalized. After 2 years of the diet, I quit keto, but recently resumed a relaxed low-carb diet. This time, I’m not using keto strips & am eating lots of low-starch veggies, so it’s not as strict, however, once again, I’m having shortness of breath every time I go hiking (again- it does not happen at rest). Fortunately, this time the breath shortness isn’t as severe, but then again, neither is my more “relaxed” diet. I think @AtomicSpaceBunny ‘s reply (i.e., “acidic blood”) is the answer: blood carries oxygen, & low pH blood doesn’t carry as much to your lungs & other organs. Good luck with your IBS & in your endeavors!! EDITED TO ADD: when i 1st experienced shortness of breath, I googled “keto acidosis”. The major symptom is rapid breathing & shortness of breath. I went so ketotic, that I think I was in keto acidosis (which isn’t healthy long term & it’s what people with type 1 diabetes sometimes experience).


(Saran Shivarajan) #65

I exactly have the same experience as OP. I am also underweight.
Thanks for all the comments, I will try the histamine thing and share my response.


(Edith) #66

Yes, please do!


(Karen) #67

Hi! Yeah that sounds rather similar to my experience. For me, the VCD is so far my best explanation. I tried the low histamine and acidic blood options and they didn’t make any difference in my case. So, just in my case, I think the VCD makes the most sense. However, I really don’t know why ketosis would cause the onset of that and make it worse. I can only guess. Good luck!! :slight_smile: