There is just no getting around saying this so here it is… keto will change the way you poop and quite possibly more than once, here’s what that means.
There are a bunch of really great benefits you’re going to see when on the keto diet. Weight loss, boost in energy, more mental focus & clarity and the list goes on. It doesn’t stop there however, you’re also going to find that your trips to the restroom may become shorter and less frequent, but usually not right away.
The Keto Poop
Yeah, funny phrase but it’s actually a pretty common one among some circles. When you’re just starting out you’re probably not going to have all that great of a time. Your digestion might be clogged up and you could experience constipation or the inverse, diarrhea! Since everybody is different and every-body is different we’re going to have to let you figure out for yourself which of these will affect you, you might even experience both.
Let’s first get this out of the way. Not using the restroom every day for a good ol’ number-two is not a sign that something’s wrong with you. Some people go three times per day while others might only go once every few days and that’s perfectly fine provided you are not feeling any signs of bloating or discomfort from it.
Low Fiber Consumption
Keto tends to cut out a lot of the usual fiber intake when just starting out. It’s for this reason you’re going to probably wind up a bit deficient in fiber… not a big deal, that just means you need to make some adjustments. Fiber tends to add bulk to your stool which helps your body’s tract actually process it and then push it out. When you can’t push the waste from your body you’re going to wind up constipated and nobody likes that, it’s uncomfortable to say the very least.
In order to fix this you simply need to fit more fiber into your daily diet while eating the keto way. This is often in the form of low-carb, leafy greens. You can even indulge in broccoli or cauliflower when prepared right. This means butter is fine but stay away from cheese sauces which may have too many carbs in them. You can also eat bok choy, kale, collards and cabbage, even fennel and a few types of berries come in handy if consumed in the proper proportions according to your daily macronutrient needs. Just be sure you stay within your carbohydrate limit each day so you are still in ketosis.
You’re Possibly Dehydrated
Dehydration can do some very nasty things to your body amongst them being constipation. When you’re starting out on the keto diet you can expect to lose quite a bit of water weight, maybe even upwards of 7 pounds just within the first week or two depending on your starting body composition. It’s going to be important to keep yourself hydrated so you don’t deplete yourself of that much needed H2o.
On the other end of the scale we have this unpleasant bathroom experience. This can strike during those first few crucial weeks as your body adapts to burning fat for fuel.
Not Enough Digestive Enzymes
Thanks to your liver which produces bile and the enzymes necessary to digest and emulsify fat you’re body is able to process it as fuel. When you begin to eat more fat than your body is used to it has to adapt and that can take a bit of time. Your liver needs an adaptation period to recalculate what it needs to produce in order to regulate everything so you’re put back into balance. Lucky for us our bodies are smart and know how to handle this all on their own, we just have to stick it out and give that much needed time for this to happen.
Too Much MCT
Plenty of keto dieters use medium chain triglycerides in order to get an extra kick of energy. Not only does it also help boost your ketone levels but it can have an adverse effect which is of course diarrhea. If you’re using MCT Oil to give you a boost of energy and find yourself dealing with this side effect then try limiting your quantity until you no longer have to deal with this annoying detail. As you keep taking MCT you’ll discover your body will likely adapt to it and you’ll then be able to increase your daily quantity to a reasonable amount. You don’t typically need more than just 1 to 2 teaspoons per day and lots of people use it strictly in their bulletproof coffee which we discuss ( right here).
What To Make of All This
In short, unless you notice extreme discomfort while going through the keto adaption phase you’re going to make it out the other end just fine. Both constipation and/or diarrhea are normal for the body to go through until fully adapted. If you know you’re body is producing it’s sustainable levels of ketones and you’re still experiencing any of these two things then you will need to possibly consult with a doctor in order to workout what might possibly be done to fix it. It’s typically just a matter of making a few tweaks to your diet but consulting with a professional if you’re able to is always a good idea. It of course does help if your doctor knows a thing or two about the keto diet and its effects on the body.