Jump-starting your keto journey can be as simple as 1-2-3! ...3 days, that is. Generally, it will take three to five days to enter ketosis. If you start the keto diet after consuming a carb-heavy diet, entering ketosis may take more time. You can speed up the process by using the quick start method described below. Aside from water fasting, this is the fastest way to enter ketosis.
Why should I jump-start ketosis?
There are a number of reasons why you would want to enter ketosis faster. Being in a state of ketosis will increase your metabolism, giving your weight loss a boost. Your hunger level will decrease and ketosis will inhibit junk food cravings. You will also experience an increase in energy and an elevated mood. Sounds great, right?! So, let’s get going!
Prepare to succeed
It is important to have all your tools to succeed before day one on your keto journey because when your hunger pains hit, opening your cupboards to boxes of prepackaged cupcakes and crackers are a sure way to sabotage your best intentions. You need a plan! Make a list of several keto-approved meals and snacks ready to go at the first sign of hunger, then stock the fridge and cupboards with those foods on your list
Some great grab-and-go snacks include:
Find tons of great keto-approved snack ideas here!
Let's talk beverages. Drink addictions are a real thing. For a lot of people sugary sodas have replaced water and that can be a real hurdle when beginning your keto journey. Luckily, there are some great replacements that can keep your keto game going strong. We recommend keeping a few different flavors of sugar-free drink mixes, such as Crystal Light or Mio, and a cold seltzer water in your fridge to mix up and enjoy when those soda cravings hit.
Now that you have a fridge full of delicious food to ensure your success, you're ready to hit the road running!
Eat foods from the approved list, being sure to stay under 20 net carbs.
Grab one of those pre-made meals you made on prep day or whip yourself up a high-fat, low carb meal. The high fat will keep you full longer and you'll end up consuming less food and calories throughout the day. But what if 4 p.m. rolls around and you're just about hitting your 20 carb cap? No worries! Grab a cheese stick, make an egg and cheese omelet, or snack on jerky for a near zero carb meal. Just a word of caution: check the label closely on the jerky as some have added sugar.
Drink plenty of water.
We've all heard the admonition to drink 100 oz of water a day and now is the time to take heed! Water helps jump start your metabolism getting your body into ketosis faster. It also helps your kidneys process the increased amount of fats and keep your bowel movements regular. Here's a rule of thumb: if you feel hungry drink a tall glass of water and wait ten minutes, if you're still hungry grab a low carb snack. We often confuse thirst with hunger.
Having a hard time getting your water in or just aren't a huge water fan? Try adding some fruit, mint leaves, lemon, or cucumber slices for a refreshing twist on plain ol' water.
Take a high quality multi-vitamin.
Have you heard of keto flu?? Its no joke. Basically its when your body goes through a metabolic shift and replaces carbs with your stored fat reserves to produce energy. During this shift you might feel many flu-like symptoms but a good multi-vitamin can help alleviate those symptoms or avoid them altogether.
Enjoy a high fat breakfast rich with protein.
The perfect keto breakfast includes some form of eggs with a side protein, preferably bacon which provides a high fat to protein ratio. The combination of a high fat and protein breakfast will keep you feeling full and ward off a disastrous case of the munchies for hours.
Up your salt intake.
Salt will be your best friend that gives you a nudge when you start feeling tired and groggy on your keto journey. Add an extra pinch on your morning eggs or a heavy dose in your chicken salad at dinner to make flavorful meals while also helping your body keep its electrolytes up while transitioning into ketosis. An easy and delicious way to get a good dose of salt into your diet is a pickle and cheese stick wrapped in a slice of turkey or drinking a bowl of broth. We recommend using himalayan pink salt for it's pure qualities.
Its recommended to avoid all fruit for the first two weeks and then slowly introducing certain berries only to ensure you get and stay in ketosis. Although fruit is generally healthy in moderate quantities, it is high in glucose and not recommended on the keto diet. Remember, you can do anything for 2 weeks! And then reward your self-control and slimmer physique with a low-carb strawberry cheesecake!
Add extra butter, coconut oil, or MCT oil to your diet.
By now you might be feeling a little sluggish and tired depending on how well you've stuck to your water, vitamins, and sodium intake. Something to consider now as your body enters ketosis is the type of fats you're consuming. Stick with natural, minimally processed oils such as butter, olive oil, coconut oil, and MCT oil. MCT oil is a fatty acid derived from coconut oil that boasts a long list of health benefits and is recommended for weight loss and weight management. Throw out low fat cooking sprays and start frying up your eggs in a wholesome oil or add a dollop of butter and coconut oil to your morning coffee, blend, and drink...no joke, its a thing! Thousands of keto dieters swear by their "bulletproof" coffee, give it a try!
Take a good fiber supplement.
I'm going to step into your personal space for a moment...has it been awhile since you've had a BM? A common complaint with the keto diet is...well...constipation. That's because most people don't eat a sufficient amount of leafy green vegetables and it comes back to bite them...in the butt. All jokes aside, adding a quality fiber supplement to your daily intake will negate the need to overnight a 5 lb bag of sugar-free gummy bears from Amazon and keep things running smoothly without the infamous tummy rumble induced pain of sugar-free candy.
Up your veggie intake.
A majority of your 20 grams daily carbs should come from vegetables. Yes, you can lose pounds and slim down by strictly eating meat and cheese. However, our goal is a thin and HEALTHY body and veggies provide necessary vitamins and minerals that help our bodies function optimally. Not all veggies are keto-friendly though. Rule of thumb: if they are starchy or have a sweet taste to them they are likely high in carbs. Some off limits veggies include carrots, corn, sweet squashes, potatoes, and only occasionally consume small portions of tomatoes, onions, and bell peppers. A great go-to dinner is a big leafy salad topped with shredded cheese, sliced steak, a few cherry tomato halves, blue cheese crumbles, and blue cheese dressing. What's not to love about that?!
Is it working?
If you feel an increase in energy and a general uplift in your mood, you are probably in ketosis. Some people have noticed a change in their breath (a mild, sweet odor) and a temporary, off-taste in their mouth.
If you are still unsure whether you are in a state of ketosis, you can purchase ketone test strips online or your local pharmacy.
Once you have completed the first three day jump-start, check our site for more tips, recipes, and to use the keto calculator.