HELP! crashing /sleepy after meals. Trouble adapting 8 weeks in

(Sungl1025) #21

Thanks so much for the reply. I actually stayed away from the gym after week 1 because it was obvious how bad my strength was. Nowadays I just walk for 1 to 1.5 hrs which is not taxing at all. However I feel the lack of strength in my legs especially when exerting even small but if strength going down stairs.

I will lay off potassium, get some ACV and eat slower.

Strangely enough, there was one day a few weeks back where my hunger was surprisingly low! However this lack of appetite went away completely the following day. I assume it was my body adapting then getting kicked out of Ketosis. Personally this is my least favorite side effect as i can’t afford to lose weight :frowning:

As far as blood glucose monitoring, I thought about buying it but didn’t want to possibly “waste” money on a diet that wasn’t “working” for me. If 20 g of carbs doesn’t work for me, I will reconsider

(Joey) #22

@Sungl1025 To ping pong off of what @amwassil said above, this is so true for so many, but it can take time. The idea of not eating my “go to” sandwich breads, chips, potatoes, rice… would have been impossible for me to fathom pre-keto. Now, I simply have no interest nor appetite for these food items.

They’ve been likened to the shipping plastic and cardboard fillers on which real tasty delicious foods are delivered. When you think about it, they’re not the actual flavorful stuff itself. Ever crave a piece of dry bread? Or a plain dry baked potato?

Instead, I now savor all the toppings and fillings (meat, egg, cheese, fats) - not the tasteless packaging they used to arrive in (the bread, potato, etc.).

But this took some time before it finally struck me. And it doesn’t hit everyone the same way. Staying away from artificial sweeteners and not trying to fabricate “keo-friendly” breads and mimick foods as such will probably facilitate this switchover in taste buds, menu habits, and potential cravings.

But especially because you’re so lean (and losing weight is the last thing you are trying to accomplish), I’d simply encourage you to confirm carefully that you’re REALLY not eating too many stealth carbs to keep yourself out of ketosis - ideally measuring, in case you need to begin identifying which are the offending menu items. And of course eating as much healthy saturated animal fats as you can muster to stay well nourished. It’s likely - given your lean physique - you’ve had a fear of fats thus far. Many of us have been raised this way. Sounds like you can certainly afford the calories :wink:

Yeah, and give yourself an exercise vacation for a spell - won’t hurt one bit to let your muscles recharge while you focus on switching your metabolism from gas over to diesel.

(Michael - Don't expect miracles and you won't be disappointed.) #23

@Sungl1025 In case you missed this (warning graphic images):

(Sungl1025) #24

Thanks for sharing. To be completely honest, the more research I do on this diet the more restrictive it feels. Based on what you shared and videos of other YouTube experts, it seems like the keto diet only works if you can stick to it 100%. One cheat meal or day is like pouring gasoline on a fire. Steph Keto Person on YT says one cheat can throw you out of Ketosis for 5 days and make you miserable. This does concern me as I’m a musician who travels a lot and completely avoiding carbs 100% of the time on the road may be difficult for me. Luckily at the moment I have some time off and could afford to do keto for 8 weeks.

What do you guys think about a low carb high fat diet (100g of carbs) as an alternative for those who can’t commit fully to a ketogenic lifestyle? Is it going to lower insulin enough and be enough to fuel workouts and performance?

I’m not saying I’m going to throw in the towel yet, but if I don’t start to improve within the next 2-3 weeks at 15 g, I may start eating some carbs.

(Michael - Don't expect miracles and you won't be disappointed.) #25

Lower carb is better than higher carb.


If you’re metabolically healthy then I think that’s entirely doable & possibly even best in your particular situation. It might be worth going full keto for a few months to ensure you’re fully fat adapted & then slowly adding in some healthy carbs to find your sweet spot.

EDIT TO ADD: As luck would have it, Amy Berger has a new post about keto/low carb & skin issues - there might be something in it for you

(Michael - Don't expect miracles and you won't be disappointed.) #27

I think it boils down to how attached you are to what you’ve been eating on SAD. I’m not portraying myself or my personal experience as necessarily typical or exemplary. Then again, I’m sure I’m not a singleton. Briefly here’s my experience.

I started keto in Jan 2017 with a 4-day water fast. I then commenced eating per keto guidelines which included sub-20 grams of net carbs per day. Prior to that I had been eating standard SAD which included fave carb-loaded foods such as: ice cream, frozen yoghurt, potatoes, rice, bread of all sorts, pasta of all sorts, fruits and juices, pizza, corn, potato and veggie chips, beer (I have been a home-brewer my entire adult life!), macadamia cookies. I was never a fan of chocolate, so I never much ate sweets and candies per se. But from day 4 I dropped all of it cold turkey. I never ate any of my fave carb foods for a full year. By then I didn’t miss any of it. Now I have an occasional beer, but none of the other stuff. Don’t even think about it.

I never really had any issues with food. I was never ‘attached’ to food emotionally or psychologically. It was and remains simply ‘fuel’. I eat what I need to function, not to ‘feel good about myself’ or anything like that. The foods I eat on keto are just as likeable and satisfying as all the carb stuff I ate on SAD.

Thus, to me, it’s primarily an attitude adjustment. Unless you’re dealing with real and serious metabolic issues. Fortunately, I never had to do that.

(squirrel-kissing paper tamer) #28

You’ll get out what you put in. If you’re in ketosis or eating low carb almost all of the time but eat carbs sometimes because you’re on the road you’ll still be eating better and after a while you’ll have metabolic flexibility (not so hard to get back to fat burning after having a carb meal). Now if you eat mostly carb meals and then do a keto day here and there, that probably won’t work although I’m sure your body will do well to have a break from sugar/grains on those days.

If you constantly switch back and forth you may feel crumby more often, depending on how easily your body makes the switch. It isn’t true that if you don’t follow it 100% of the time then you shouldn’t even try. Do your best, makes the lowest carb choices when you’re unable to eat keto and listen to your body. Best wishes.

(Sungl1025) #29

Thanks for the responses guy. I’m so glad I made an account here! Makes me feel like I’m not all alone on this journey. :slight_smile:

I just finished dinner and failed to drop carbs under 20g, but managed to keep it at 23.5g. No crazy blood sugar crash but I did feel a slight lull/ light brain fog after lunch. I think this is good progress. I will try cutting carbs further tomorrow.

On the upside, my acne has improved noticeable since going keto, and improves even more when I eat in a tight 19/5 window. And even further with my 48 hr fast. The clearer skin is the primary reason I have remained on this diet despite the struggles. At times, I have felt temporary moments of mental clarity where it felt almost like a mild euphoria? If I could feel like that consistently and get my energy levels up, this diet will be 100% worth it.

The drawbacks are post meal sleepiness, heart palpitations and feeling weakness, all symptoms which I hope will subside when I get fat adapted. Cheers, will continue to push through!

(kicking cancer's butt with keto) #30

I do want to say that I had a Green Tea (with MCT Oil and Butter) before noon. My glucose is currently around 79 (I’m not checking ketones until supper), which is at the upper end of my average for last week. But, its still a good number, and I seem to have recovered from last night’s accidental sugar consumption. And as of around noon my ketones were around 2.6 mmol. Down from what they were before breaking my fast, and only down a little bit from before the “sugar incident”.

Really, I think the length of time it takes to recover is highly individual. You would need to do experiments to find out where the line is for you. Also, remember, it could vary depending on how pure of a sugar (carb) you are eating. Eating more veggies (or milk) could be totally different from eating the same amount of carbs in donut form, for how you react to it.

(squirrel-kissing paper tamer) #31

I had a lot of the tired, headache and sluggishness at work after lunch in the beginning. It helped to eat my carbs at lunch and what’s left, at dinner. The boost I get from a bit of veg at lunch seems to help. Breakfast is usually zero carb because I pair it with coffee and always feel pretty alert in the mornings anyway.

I keep chicken granules at work to make broth for headaches or if I’m feeling weirdly peckish or sluggish. I’m terrible about getting enough water but since I’ve quit diet Mt. Dew and all other drinks with artificial sweeteners (due to an elimination diet, not because I’m against them) it’s what I am working on. I am definitely more tired and have brain fog and achy joints when I am dehydrated. I’m two seconds away from putting chips in my pocket and switching them to another pocket every time I finish a tumbler of water.

Glad you’re here too. The folks on this forum are really supportive and understand that everyone has their own needs.

(Hyperbole- it’s the best thing in the universe! ) #32

Just in case it hasn’t been mentioned, and even if it has for reiteration… SALT!

Your kidneys are more efficient without the carbs, so you will need more salt. Some of the tiredness and heart palpitations may be signs of low sodium.

(Sungl1025) #33

Hello all,
I thought I’d update on my status after removing lo salt and lowering my carbs to under 20g a day. The sleepiness/ crashing after eating a meal is definitely improved, but not totally gone. It seems like it happens after lunch meal, and less often after dinner (even when eating the same exact meal). Strange

My appettite has gone down dramatically. I’m actually not very happy about it as weight is coming off my already thin frame. Yesterday I ate one meal and I’m not hungry for the rest of the day…pretty crazy. I can see why this would be appealing to those who have weight to lose.

-I’m still working thru a number of issues.

My problems are the following:

  • My legs feel weak going up/down stairs still. Physical strength still low
  • heart palpitations are still there(much improved since the beginning bug not going away totally even after taking in tons of electrolytes. I’ve gone as high as 8,000 mg of sodium as an experiment)
  • I’m waking up in the middle of the night wide awake. Then trouble falling back asleep. Might be screwing up my circadian rhythm

-clearer skin (acne)
-sharper mind at times
-easier to wake up

Will continue to keep carbs low. I take the appetite drop as a big sign that my body is starting to adapt. So far it’s been mixed feelings about the diet but I don’t want to make any premature conclusions until I actually get fat adapted. Trying to be patient… cheers

(squirrel-kissing paper tamer) #34

Thanks for the update. How’s your hydration, are you experimenting with that? I’m glad you’re feeling more energy than before and hope the muscle fatigue improves.

(Edith) #35

8000 mg of sodium or 8000 mg of salt? I ask this because they are not the same. Salt also has chloride in it, so 8000 mg of salt only contains about 3100 mg of Sodium. I’m 5’3”. I have to supplement with 2 teaspoons of salt a day in addition to the salt in my food.

You probably need to take magnesium, too, if you are not taking that already. It is also an electrolyte.

Also, the fat adaption can take some time. The feeling of lead in your legs doesn’t just suddenly go away, it just slowly gets better as the weeks progress.

The waking up at night may improve over time. It can be an adjustment as your body gets used to low carbs. Your body thinks it’s starving, so it releases cortisol to release some glucose during the night . The cortisol release wakes you up. The other related reason for waking up could be you are not eating enough food. That can also stress your body and cause cortisol to release.

Keto can be easy for some. For me it’s been a big electrolyte balancing act. I’m always having to tweak them. I have to look at taking them like a medication, because otherwise I get muscle aches, cramps, and heart palpitations. Fortunately , I like all other benefits I’ve received from it, and that is what keeps me going.

(Sungl1025) #36

Yes I’ve experimented with all levels of hydration. I found that too much water worsened my palpitations (flushing out electeokyets) so I drink about 2 liters a day now or so.

(Sungl1025) #37

It’s a struggle balancing electrolytes as well. I’ve been experimenting with different ratios of sodium potassium and magnesium for the past 2 months. I’ve gone as high as 8,000 mg of Sodium not salt, still not feeling perfect. I usually take 4-5000 mg. I take 200-400 mg of magnesium glycinate, and eat plenty of greens for potassium.

(Edith) #38

You may need to up your magnesium. I was taking 400 mg a day of magnesium citrate for years. My need for magnesium must have gone up on keto because I developed heart palpitations that only resolved after I doubled my dosage.

(Michael - Don't expect miracles and you won't be disappointed.) #39

It is my opinion that it is virtually impossible to eat even the minimum suggest daily intake, let alone the high end of that range without adding potassium salt. Most people unless you eat half a dozen or more large avocados every day, on SAD or keto, don’t come close. Until I started eating keto I had hardly ever thought about potassium, even though I knew somewhat that deficiency was associated with night cramps. Instead, I was focused on magnesium. Finally, once I started experimenting with my current mix of sodium, potassium and magnesium salts, I started to alleviate my night cramps.

(Sungl1025) #40

I was taking magnesium citrate capsules 400 mg pills 1-2x a day in the beginning but it gave me diarhhea. I then switched recently to magnesium glycinate capsules and dropped my dosage to 200-400mg. What type of magnesium do you recommend? I don’t notice any difference whether I supplement or not but perhaps I need to take more as you say