Keto diet and menstrual cycle



I am 3 months in and bleeding almost daily for the past three weeks.:frowning:


Update: Got the IUD and the spotting stopped…:thinking:

(Madeena Albrey Porath) #23

About 3 weeks into this WOE I started spotting a few days after my initial period was over. This continued for a few weeks and eventually stopped after the end of my next cycle. It was extremely frustrating at the time, but all is well now. KCKO!


I am 23 days late for my period…experienced spotting for a month…now my period is gone…
What can I do to get my period back? I am actually doing lazy keto, I don’t track macros… Should I carb up or go back to normal diet for a couple days? HELP…

(Jessika Nilsson) #25

You could try eating more food, I had to up my calories for a while, and still am, for my period to return when it went missing after a period of too many extended fasts with not enough food in between.
I’m still making sure I eat more until my period has completely stabilized (some more protein since I strength train a lot, but mostly fat).
I think I might have unintentionally been undereating as I usually never got hungry, but I could usually always eat more… So maybe you’re body just needs more food (/calories) ?


Hi Jessika,

Thank you for your suggestion!

I think I’ve been eating a lot, taking excessive amount of calories…I’m 5’7 and 133lb, didn’t really lose weight since I went keto. I do weight lifting and HIIT regularly. Did you try to reduce your workout while eating more?

(Jessika Nilsson) #27

First I stopped with the extended fasting, then the intermittent fasting and started eating breakfast, lunch and dinner and upping my calories. I did stop my cardio, but that was at most once a week and usuallly hillsprints for max 30 minutes.
I kept up my strengthtraining sessions as usual, (60 minutes,4 times a week, pretty heavy)
So I only reduced the training I thought could be increasing the cortisol, and therefore I skipped the cardio. But lots of walking instead :wink:

But I did gain weight too though, but not sure how much was from needing to eat more and how much was from how my body later reacted to the stressfull event of a close relatives sudden death. My period was already really late by then, but it sure didn’t help to stress the body out with mourning…
Since then I’ve picked up yin yoga on my rest days (3 times a week) to try to lower my stress levels. I’m also back to doing intermittent fasting (16:8) but still eating more than before.

And I thought I was eating about 2200-2500 kcal everyday, but when I checked I was about 500 kcal off. So I wasn’t eating as much as I thought prior to loosing my period. So sometimes it’s not enough to think, sometimes it might be a good idea to check :wink:

Edit: For reference: I’m 5’6 and weighted 134lbs when I lost my period, but I had lost about 5-6 lbs during a month using extended fasting.


Thank you for sharing your experience! Really appreciated that!

(Courtney ) #29

I’ve had my Mirena for nearly 5 years, it’s my second and both times I never had a period. I was on keto for 3 months and experienced spotting then I had some bumps in the road and stopped eating keto and all spotting and symptoms left. I went back on keto 4 days ago and today got a full on period. Questions: is it just keto and my body is adjusting hormone levels? If so, is my IUD still functioning during this adjustment?

(Harjit Singh) #30

Hiya, has everything gone back to normal for you? I just finished my first month on Keto and experiencing the same thing as you pretty much. Go my period 2 weeks early and have had a full period for like 5 days now and i’m on the pill. I feel like giving up Keto - did your period end up normalizing eventually?

(Harjit Singh) #31

Hi ! did everything eventually normalize with your period?

(Catya) #32

Hello there,
Looks like the best suggestions for this thread seem to have a “wait it out” mentality. Much relieved. Spotting is incredibly inconvenient, especially when it goes on for quite a while. I’ve been keto for about 1 month now, which I know is very short term, but have always had VERY regular periods - spotting is a totally new experience. Glad to know there seems to be a light at the end of the tunnel!

(Alyssa Jiron) #33

Hello All… I’m just about a week into Keto and feeling alright. I’ve been ok continuous birth control for the past year and usually don’t have a period unles I take a break. But after the week of Keto I have gotten my period and I have had horrible cramps the last three days. It isn’t abnormally heavy, just very painful (which is the reason I was on BC to begin with). I’m just wondering if anyone else has had a similar experience or when this might subside?


I know this post is a bit old, but just in case anyone stumbles upon this like I did…I started a Keto diet for the second time January 1st of this year. I had done the diet previously, but had slowly eased into and didn’t experience any issues as far as Keto flu or with my period. The second time around I was more prepared to start and jumped right in. Due to quickly cutting my carb intake I did experience about a week of Keto flu. That first month my period started in the third week of my packet of BC pills instead of my fourth(sugar pills). I found this strange because I had been on the same pill for over 10 years and the dosage I had been taking at the time for over a year without experiencing this. My period ended up lasting for over a week and a half that month which brought me just about to when I was meant to start taking my next pack of pills. I started the next pack at the time I was scheduled to and didn’t think much else of it since I had been taking them at the same time daily without missing a pill. I continued on a strict Keto diet and during the third week of my next cycle I experienced some spotting. I figured it was just some break through bleeding and that my period would start on schedule the following week, but it didn’t. I didn’t think I could possibly be pregnant since I had been on the pill so long without so much as a scare and I hadn’t missed a pill or changed the way I took them at all. In order to ease my mind I took pregnancy test and sure enough it was positive. Turns out that the spotting I experienced that month was implantation bleeding and I am now 6 months pregnant. Obviously this is completely anecdotal and there is no way to know for sure if the diet had any impact on my pregnancy(it’s possible I’m just part of the 1%), BUT if your period is impacted AT ALL by ketosis I would definitely recommend an alternative method of contraceptive.

TL/DR- use alternative contraceptive if you have any change in your period after starting Keto.

(Ana Barbara Alzua) #35

Don’t use tampons at night! yoy may get TSS! it’s really dangerous!!! Women have lost legs over it!

(Jessika Nilsson) #36

I’d suggest not using tampons at all, and instead opt for a menstrual cup :wink: So much more ‘cleaner’, both for your body and the environment. I feel much more comfortable with the cup and you can use it 24-7, and you barely notice you’re having menstruation except for when you empty (&clean) it :blush:

(Jehan Mohanna Ferguson) #37

I’m 2.5 months in, my first cycle after starting keto was normal hardly no cramps, now my second period, I had spotting for 3 days or should I say a spot for 3 days and after that it finally turned red/pink and it’s non stop, it’s very very slow flow, it just won’t go away! I’m so frustrated and annoyed, has yours stopped if so how long did it take?

(Vanessa) #38

I have been taking birth control pills for 20 years, minus the time I was pregnant and nursing my two daughters. My periods were always normal and routine, and I was always able to rely on a continuous, predictable cycle. Beginning June 2017, I started a strict Keto diet for 17 months, and spotting began immediately. I would either spot, or have a period, for about 3 weeks out of 4. In addition, I started breaking out with acne as if I was a teenager again. It was insane! It felt like a punishment. It also was completely unnverving since the only time I had ever had issues with my period is when I had gotten pregnant. I researched and Google’d and have not really found a solution to the spotting, irregular cycles, and keto. Everything I read says to just wait it out and that my period should stabilize. They never did. 17 months of NEVER stabilizing, going through a ton of feminine products, and sex abstinence (poor boyfriend). So 17 months later, the holidays were upon us, and I decided to cheat with carbs and sugar. Surprise, surprise. My period completely went back to normal and all acne completely disappeared. I spent over a year and a half dealing with this and it immediately resolved itself. 2 cycles in while cheating, and my period is completely normal and predictable like it used to be. Unfortunately, I have gained a lot of weight, body pain, bloating, and lethargic energy back, so I am ready to go back to Keto. My cheat time has clearly showed me that I am missing SOMETHING while on Keto. Not sure what it is. I definitely get in my fat, keep carbs below 30-40g a day. I watch my macros. I take collagen peptides, MCT oil, Vitamin B, and a women’s multi-vitamin everyday. I don’t know what my body is missing… maybe I have built up an insulin resistance? Who knows! Keto is the best diet I have ever tried, still allowing me to eat yummy foods (hello bacon and cheese!), but clearly I need something. Perhaps adding a moderate amount of healthier sugar/carbs (like fruits or sweet potatoes??) IDK! If anyone has had this same issue and has a solution, I’d love to hear it!

(Amy) #39

Keto also messes with my hormones. I find I do better by upping my carbs to around 50 grams/day (more veggies, nuts, and berries), and a couple days/week of 100grams/day (sweet potatoes, yogurt/banana smoothie, some rice or beans, occasional treat). I don’t remember where I read it, but I heard that it helps to have higher carbs during the 2nd half of your cycle, and eat the carbs at night to help you sleep and use them up before your next meal.
I haven’t gained any weight doing this, and I feel tons better in many respects. You’ll have to find your own limits with experimentation.


Two questions:

  1. Did you start adding those carbs after you got to your goal weight or while you were still losing?

  2. By 2nd half of menstrual cycle, is that after ovulation?