Too successful, too fast? Can I trust my results?

(Joey) #1

Greetings! Am a total newbie here (and to Keto). I’ve got a question that perhaps those more experienced here can shed light on.

BACKGROUND: I’m a male in my early 60’s in pretty good health despite years of high carb/low fat eating (yeah, I carefully followed that classic USDA/AHA silliness).

Anyhow, after researching a lot, I decided to take the keto leap.

HERE’S WHAT I DID: Exactly 4 days I sharply switched from my lifelong high carb/low fat eating to a faithful high fat/low carb diet (eggs, beef, bacon, cheese, nice clean salads, etc) with limited net carbs of only 25-35g daily. Kept my fat intake up (avg just over 100g) and reasonable protein levels (avg 75-100g). I’ve been tracking all this very carefully with Carb Manager to derive such figures. Also, I’ve stayed well hydrated with plenty of H2O and trying to keep my sodium levels up.

RESULTS: Frankly, I feel GREAT. No keto-flu, despite being braced for the misery I’d read about. This diet is nothing like what I’ve been eating for decades … no digestive issues and everything tastes great. Energy level is high and I’m loving it.

MY CONCERN: Ok, so today my Keto-Mojo meter just arrives and so around noon (before eating my 1st meal of the day, which is typical for my schedule) but having recently worked out for about 30 minutes of solid daily cardio, I tested my glucose and ketones with the keto-mojo unit. Now I’m baffled…

KETONES: 1.6 mmol/L … but not sure I got quite enough blood up the strip. So I immediately took a second reading with what I hoped was sufficient blood, and the second reading was 2.2 mmol/L … I mean, REALLY?

Seriously, don’t get me wrong - I’m NOT disappointed - on the contrary. I’m skeptical. I’ve only been at this 4 days and have had no “flu” symptoms and feel fantastic - even beginning to sense I’m eating more than my hunger even requires.

But frankly, if I’m really in ketosis, perhaps this was TOO easy. I braced myself for a week or two of challenging transition symptoms. I fully appreciate that making the switch is typically difficult and so I just assumed my experience would be similar.

As a result, I’m doubting these keto test results. I’m wondering if perhaps I didn’t get enough blood on the meter stick and THAT’S why I’m getting artificially high ketone readings?

FWIW, my glucose - which I tested first - came in at 71 mg/dl. This produces a GKI of between 1.8 to 2.5 (depending on which of those two BHB Ketone readings I use). If I understand correctly, this would also suggest a high level of ketosis is underway.

Am I REALLY off to such a successful start down this Keto path? If so, it was a lot easier than I expected - and so I’m a bit skeptical I can trust these test results.

Anyone have a similar transition experience? …or hear of others on a life-long high carb/low fat diet with such a seamless transition to ketosis?

Any fact-based perspectives you might share would be much appreciated! Thanks in advance.

(It's all about the bacon, baby!) #2

We go into ketosis pretty much as soon as the dietary glucose runs out. I believe that what has you confused is the distinction between ketosis and fat- (or keto-) adaptation, which takes more like six to eight weeks, and sometimes longer. Ketosis is the state in which the liver is producing ketone bodies, and it occurs as soon as the serum insulin drops low enough. Fat-adaptation is a series of biochemical changes at the cellular level, and takes a sufficient time in ketosis to occur. Does that help?

ETA: The reason you haven’t experience the keto “flu” is that you are getting enough salt in your diet to prevent the symptoms.

(Joey) #3

Ah, thank you for that helpful clarification … ketosis vs. keto-adaptation.

So it sounds like I’ve got a long way to go - and will still likely feel “not-so-great” before too long. Ironically, I’m feeling a tad better about things, i.e., now that I’m expecting to feel crummy soon. :wink:

(hottie turned hag) #4

Nah dude, I never felt crummy and I’ve had fantastic and swift results.
I agree with Paul, it has much to do with electrolyte balance being maintained (not feeling lousy).
Welcome btw!

(Marianne) #5

That was my experience as well - no keto flu, absence of cravings right from the get-go, great energy, loved the food, etc.

I never measured pee ketones, bg etc. (although a lot of people enjoy knowing these values). I don’t have any issue staying usually under 10g carbs/day, and at that, I knew I would be in ketosis. That was enough for me. I don’t want to be a slave to any values, scale included.

So glad you are having a good experience. So many people say this is “too restrictive” and crazy; it’s nice to hear from someone recently starting who loves it!

(Not a cow) #6

Not enough blood on Mojo, gives “Lo” or "Error"as the reading. Sounds like you are in ketosis.

(Carl Keller) #7

We are designed to have a back up plan to generate energy. If we couldn’t metabolize fat for fuel in the absence of carbs, every time we ran out of food (or fasted) for a few days, we’d wither away from lack of energy. Ketones are the result of breaking down fat, whether it’s off our body or from the food we eat.

(Joey) #8

@Moo: Well, that’s great to know.

@All: And so, trusting today’s BHB metrics, it appears I just happen to be one of those very lucky ones who is off to an easy start and/or I’m enjoying a dividend from my generally healthy life habits (i.e., ignoring those decades of carbs).

If nothing else, bracing oneself for such a miserable experience helps one exceed expectations :wink:

Anyhow, I’m blown away by the number and clarity of encouraging responses - all within about an hour or so. This is a rather remarkable community you’ve got up and running here. I hope someday I can make a meaningful contribution to others down the line.

Thanks again!

(Marianne) #9

This forum is the bomb - and a lot of fun!

You already are!


(Ilana Rose) #10

I had no keto flu at all while my husband was so horribly ill we considered taking him to the hospital and had to give him Gatorade to sort him out before trying again with more care to electrolytes. People have hugely different adaptation phases.

Also, I got a huge mood and energy bump and the only difference of that sort that my husband noted was no longer wanting a nap in the afternoons.

(Susan) #11

Welcome to the forum, Joey =).

It sounds like you are doing great for a new person on Keto, just keep it up!

(Joey) #12

Thank you for the encouraging words!

(Full Metal KETO AF) #13

Hi Joey and welcome, I don’t test but I have heard others say that if your finger isn’t really clean you can get a messed up reading. I would get some alcohol pads to clean your fingertip if you aren’t already doing that. :cowboy_hat_face:

(Joey) #14

Thanks for the welcome and note about clean-finger testing. I appreciate the reminder.

I’ll confess that as a stickler for following directions (I’m an odd-ball who actually reads device manuals and IKEA instructions beforehand), I both wash and swab with alcohol. :wink:

I hope your keto journey is going well.

(Full Metal KETO AF) #15

I just dropped ten stubborn pounds and broke a two month stall eating Fat only for 4 days. Check out my thread. Stick with it!
Keto will get you where you want to be.


(Joey) #16

Shortly after going full keto in early July, I posted about my initial experiences, including my surprisingly elevated BHB levels beyond what I had expected.

I received some uplifting encouragement here, plus along with some expectations management thoughts about how my BHB levels would likely taper off (after the “beginner’s luck” wore off) :slight_smile:

Well, now at 9 weeks in, it looks like that easing trend is finally happening (see graph below). [BTW, once I got the hang of this thing, I didn’t feel the need (expense!) to test BHB every single day, so the right side of this trend doesn’t look quite as “spikey” with daily data - but the overall arc of the trend is clear nonetheless.]

My morning BHB had been hovering between 4-6 mmol/L for most of the past two months. I even feared that I had a defective Keto-Mojo. But in more recent days - with no change in diet or IF (TMAD) - the BHB reading has begun descending to around 2+ mmol/L. Important to note that I continue to feel wonderful; my systemic inflammation is still gone in its many manifestations, weight/waist are also now fairly stable (at markedly lower points than when I started).

Hypothesis: I am assuming that my body is now largely “fat-adapted” by now and that the apparent “excess” ketones measured earlier are either (1) no longer being produced in the same volume and/or (2) being more fully absorbed by my muscles, brain, and organs. I share this n=1 in hopes it is of help to someone coming along this particular path in the future.

The human body is a remarkable construct :wink:

(It's all about the bacon, baby!) #17

Uh, why is your x-axis slanted? I’m pretty sure I’m not tipsy . . . :grin:

(Joey) #18

Nah, just silly Excel stuff. Everything made by Bill Gates has a mind of its own.

But if you hold your head at just the right angle beside the screen…

(It's all about the bacon, baby!) #19

:rofl: LOL :rofl:

(Kimbrie Sauvageau) #20

Hope for best and expect the worst they say…glad to hear you didnt get sick and are seeing evidence of ketosis…these are both GREAT things my friend, best of luck to you in your efforts!