How to get enough electrolytes


(9495ab7d13c7254f16de) #1

Okay so here’s some background first and then I’ll ask my question to all you ketores out there. I’ve been eating keto for 7 wks now. I have type 2 diabetes or am prediabetic depending on who you ask. My bs was around 130 fasting when I started and my a1c is at 6.1. Since starting keto it’s been going good. my numbers are steadily coming down and I’ve lost a little weight. My bp is looking awesome (except for one episode that I think was an anxiety attack) I eat 2 meals a day within a 6 hr window and am doing pretty good with my macros. I’ve been in nutritional ketosis for a week (woohoo!) now without getting kicked out. I’ve been in and out for most of the time but this is the longest I’ve stayed in ketosis. So my problem is my electrolytes. I take a multivitamin plus a mag/cal supplement and I’m using ultima powder in my water all day. I’m measuring out my salt and trying to get 2 tsp in plus whatever I get in my food but I haven’t been fully successful in that yet. It’s a lot of salt :sweat_smile: I checked my potassium yesterday and I got about 2500mg and I think that’s pretty normal for me. My heart has been pounding since yesterday and my legs are wanting to cramp. I was more active this weekend than normal so I know that’s playing Into it but when I say more active I mean like I went for a long walk on a rocky beach and cleaned my house excessively. I’m pretty low exercise still so it was a lot for my body this weekend. I don’t think I’m getting enough potassium maybe but I’m not sure how to incorporate more at this point. More veggies means going over my carbs and when I look up using something like no salt it warns against using it if you’re in blood pressure meds. Idk if I should up my carb limit for more veggies or disregard the warning about no salt. I’m just so exhausted trying to figure out what my body needs for balance :expressionless:. Everything else about keto is working great for me but I don’t want to be worried about my heart or kidneys or cramping every night etc all the time. How do you guys get everything in? And do you have to be this diligent forever?


(Give me bacon, or give me death.) #2

Eat salt to taste. If things taste too salty, you can cut back; if you crave salt, use more. The dietary recommendations of most governments for salt intake are woefully unhealthy, so ignore them.

But also drink to thirst. You need to be properly hydrated in order to keep electrolytes regulated. Too much liquid will disrupt your electrolytes, but so will too little.

Once you get your salt intake into the right range, you will find it easier to keep your magnesium and potassium properly regulated as well. The mechanisms that regulate sodium, calcium, magnesium, and potassium are all interlinked.


(Ron) #3

I am 2td as well and when I started I had the same problem. I also upped my potassium (too much and had some problems) and through trial and error I actually determined that it was low magnesium that was causing my symptoms. I now rotate between mag Citrate and Malate that I get from NOW products. Now 3 years later it has actually become a benefit as the body now tells me when I need a little boost (understanding what my body is telling me). It is a whole new concept to understand you body signals that I don’t think sugar eating allows. Enjoy the ride. :wink:


(charlie3) #4

For me low carb is a tool, not a religion. 20 grams total carbs might be exactly right for some people in some situations but it’s not magic. When I stay that low I get diet fatique. I’m usually at 30-40 net carbs. Then I do enough activity/exercise to burn the extra carbs faster. That’s my theory. I wish I had gotten blood work at the beginning of low carb to have a reference, recommended. Dramatically changing diet after a life time could have unpredictable effects or may be you already have a condition that gets wrongly blamed on diet changes. One thing recent blood work seems to verify is my electrolites are well within normal ranges.


(Give me bacon, or give me death.) #5

If you can stay in ketosis at that level, that’s great. The 20 g/day limit is arbitrary. The word is that Richard and Carl picked it because it’s practically guaranteed to get everyone into ketosis, except for the most metabolically deranged. When I joined these forums, the rumour was that they really wanted to advise eating no carbohydrate at all, but realised it would put most people off.

Everyone’s carb tolerance is different, and it appears that people’s carb tolerance also varies over time. The point is to eat a small enough amount that your serum glucose and serum insulin are not at damagingly high levels. If you can eat a bit more carbohydrate than others can, mazel tov.

As for diet fatigue, that seems to be another area with high individual variability. I could live quite comfortably for a long time on a diet of bacon, eggs, and hamburger, before I would ever want a change, but other people seem to get frantic unless they eat something different every meal.