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How Long Does It Take to Get Into Ketosis?

Published December 13, 2018 (Revised: November 05, 2019)
Ben Kissam

Written By: Ben Kissam, BS

Ben has a B.S. in Movement and Sports Science and over 7 years Certified Personal Training Experience.

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<script type="application/ld+json"> { "@context":"http://schema.org", "@type":"BlogPosting", "author": { "@type": "Person", "name": "Ben Kissam, BS" }, "publisher": { "@type": "Organization", "name": "Warrior Made", "logo": { "@type": "ImageObject", "url": "https://www.warriormade.com", "image": "https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/media/public/2018/12/clock-on-plate-black-background.jpg" } }, "headline":"How Long Does It Take to Get Into Ketosis?", "datePublished":"2018-12-13", "dateModified": "2019-11-05", "description":"In this article we’ll tell you how long it takes to get into ketosis and what may be keeping you from getting there.", "image": "https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/media/public/2018/12/clock-on-plate-black-background.jpg" } </script> <script type="application/ld+json"> { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What is Ketosis?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Ketosis is a normal metabolic process where your body switches to fat as its primary fuel source. When there aren’t enough stored carbohydrates, the body burns fat instead. To do this, it uses something called ketones. <br>Ketones are chemicals made in your liver that are produced when your body notices there isn’t enough insulin in your blood to turn sugar into energy.<br>If that’s confusing, just think of ketones as a natural response of your body to use fat as fuel because you don’t have enough stored glycogen (sugar energy). Instead, in ketosis, your liver turns fat into ketones and sends those to your muscles and other tissues for fuel.<br>Your body is running off ketones as a fuel source is where we get the term ketosis. Ketosis is a highly desirable state for anyone looking to lose weight as your body becomes, quite literally, a fat-burning machine.<br>It takes time for the body to switch from burning glycogen (sugars) to burning fat depending on some variables. Also keeping in mind, everyone’s body is different.<br>Ketosis is where the keto diet gets its name, because the two go hand in hand. If you’re unfamiliar with the ketogenic diet, we’ve broken it down for you." } }, { "@type": "Question", "name": "What is the Ketogenic Diet?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Perhaps the most effective way to get into ketosis is by using the ketogenic diet. The ketogenic diet (keto diet) is a high-fat, moderate-protein, low-carb eating approach.<br>Low carb on keto means 5 percent or less of your daily calories come from carbs--less than fifty grams.<br>When it comes to what you’ll eat on the ketogenic diet, there is a lot of variety. While you can’t eat anything too high in carbohydrates or sugar, there’s tons of tasty options.<br>On keto you liberally consume fats like full-fat dairy like butter or dairy, healthy oils (coconut, olive oil), nuts and seeds like almonds or walnuts, and keto superfoods like avocado. Quality proteins like seafood, meat, and poultry are also staples of the diet.<br>Your 50 grams of carbs come from low-carb vegetables and occasional fruits. Staples include dark leafy greens like broccoli and kale, other veggies like cauliflower, zucchini, and cabbage, and, in moderation, low-glycemic fruit like blueberries." } }, { "@type": "Question", "name": "How Long Does It Take to Get into Ketosis?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "For someone just starting out with the ketogenic diet, it can take between three to seven days before you start achieving ketosis. It might even take up to ten days. It depends on a few variables, which we’ll look at in the keys below.<br>People’s experience switching their bodies into fat burning mode will differ because our bodies are so different. Getting into ketosis can be challenging for some, so we have a “How To Get Into Ketosis” guide if you want more information on that.<br>To accelerate the process of getting into ketosis, you may consider upping your fat intake, fasting, or exercising to deplete your body’s stores of glycogen quicker." } }, { "@type": "Question", "name": "How do you know when your body is in ketosis?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "In this section, we’ll talk about two ways you’ll know if you’re in ketosis. The truth is, you won’t ever actually know without testing your blood. But there are some signals your body gives off when the state is achieved.<br>Testing Ketones<br>Here’s the short version of testing for ketosis. Ketones are found in both blood and urine. There are plenty of home solutions available that allow you to actually test if the body is running off ketones. This ketone measuring guide explains more.<br>You can find ketone test strips, blood measuring kits, and more with a simple Google search. It can be a complicated topic depending on your current health and if you are dealing with something like Type 2 diabetes.<br>Testing ketones in and of itself requires its own guide, so for now, we’ll keep it to that.<br>Signs You’re in Ketosis<br>Short of actual testing strips or a measurement tool, it can be tough to know you’re in ketosis. Nevertheless, there are some telltale signs and symptoms of being in ketosis.<br>Some of the signs you are in ketosis include increased focus or energy (because you’re no longer in a sugar crash), not feeling hungry, and weight loss.<br>Unfortunately, not all of the signs are as rosy or amazing-sounding as “body fat is melting off of you.” There are some less exciting side effects, too.<br>For example, bad breath is a very common symptom of being in a state of ketosis. So too are fatigue and decreased performance, though in the long-term, that tends to go away.<br>Finally, if you experience digestive issues or can’t sleep, that’s also fairly common when your body is adjusting." } }] } </script> <article> <div> <ul> <li><a href="#section1">What is Ketosis?</a></li> <li><a href="#section2">What is the Ketogenic Diet?</a></li> <li><a href="#section3">How Long Does It Take to Get into Ketosis?</a></li> <li><a href="#section4">4 Tips to Get You Into Ketosis Faster</a></li> <li><a href="#section5">How Do You Know When Your Body is in Ketosis?</a></li> <li><a href="#section6">The Bottom Line</a></li> </ul> </div> <section> <p>Ketosis is the body’s “sweet spot” for burning fat as the primary fuel source, feeling energized, and losing weight quickly.</p> <p>It’s a process that takes place when your body switches from burning sugar to burning fat for your energy. </p> <p>With health benefits from weight loss to heightened focus to improved cholesterol, people often want to get into ketosis as quickly as possible.<sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK499830/" rel="nofollow noreferrer">1</a></sup> <sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5506682/" rel="nofollow noreferrer">2</a></sup></p> <p>There are steps to know and consider when it comes to how long it takes to get into ketosis. We’ll share them with you below.</p> <p>Switching your body into fat-burning mode comes down to several different things. For example, how long you’ve been following a low-carb approach like the ketogenic diet, how many carbs you’re eating per day, and if you’re exercising.</p> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section id="section1"> <h2>What is Ketosis?</h2> <p>Ketosis is a normal metabolic process where your body switches to fat as its primary fuel source. When there aren’t enough stored carbohydrates, the body burns fat instead. To do this, it uses something called ketones<sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK499830/" rel="nofollow noreferrer">3</a></sup>.</p> <p>Ketones are chemicals made in your liver that are produced when your body notices there isn’t enough insulin in your blood to turn sugar into energy.</p> <p>If that’s confusing, just think of ketones as a natural response of your body to use fat as fuel because you don’t have enough stored glycogen (sugar energy). Instead, in ketosis, your liver turns fat into ketones and sends those to your muscles and other tissues for fuel.</p> <p>Your body is running off ketones as a fuel source is where we get the term <i>ketosis</i>. Ketosis is a highly desirable state for anyone looking to lose weight as your body becomes, quite literally, a fat-burning machine. <sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK499830/" rel="nofollow noreferrer">3</a></sup></p> <p>It takes time for the body to switch from burning glycogen (sugars) to burning fat depending on some variables. Also keeping in mind, everyone’s body is different.</p> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/sand-timer-0033.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/sand-timer-0033.jpf" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/sand-timer-0033.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/sand-timer-LR-0033.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="sand-timer"> </picture> <p>Ketosis is where the keto diet gets its name, because the two go hand in hand. If you’re unfamiliar with the ketogenic diet, we’ve broken it down for you.</p> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section id="section2"> <h2>What is the Ketogenic Diet?</h2> <p>Perhaps the most effective way to get into ketosis is by using the ketogenic diet.<sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK499830/" rel="nofollow noreferrer">3</a></sup> The ketogenic diet (keto diet) is a high-fat, moderate-protein, low-carb eating approach.</p> <p>Low carb on keto means 5 percent or less of your daily calories come from carbs--less than fifty grams.</p> <p>When it comes to <i>what</i> you’ll eat on the ketogenic diet, there is a lot of variety. While you can’t eat anything too high in carbohydrates or sugar, there’s tons of tasty options.</p> <p>On keto you liberally consume fats like full-fat dairy like butter or dairy, healthy oils (coconut, olive oil), nuts and seeds like almonds or walnuts, and <a target="_blank" href="https://www.warriormade.com/content/diet/what-are-superfoods-top-7-for-your-keto-diet/" rel="noreferrer">keto superfoods</a> like avocado. Quality proteins like seafood, meat, and poultry are also staples of the diet. </p> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/vegetables-in-square-bowls-0033.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/vegetables-in-square-bowls-0033.jpf" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/vegetables-in-square-bowls-0033.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/vegetables-in-square-bowls-LR-0033.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="vegetables-in-square"> </picture> <p>Your 50 grams of carbs come from <a target="_blank" href="https://www.warriormade.com/content/diet/the-best-low-carb-vegetables-to-eat-on-keto/" rel="noreferrer">low-carb vegetables</a> and occasional fruits. Staples include dark leafy greens like broccoli and kale, other veggies like cauliflower, zucchini, and cabbage, and, in moderation, low-glycemic fruit like blueberries.</p> <p>For a keto food pyramid breakdown, you can view a full breakdown <a target="_blank" href="https://www.warriormade.com/content/diet/what-is-the-keto-food-pyramid/" rel="noreferrer">here</a>.</p> <p>Combined with exercise or even a short fast, the easiest way to get into ketosis is to follow the keto diet.</p> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section id="section3"> <h2>How Long Does It Take to Get into Ketosis?</h2> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/timer-on-table-0033.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/timer-on-table-0033.jpf" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/timer-on-table-0033.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/timer-on-table-LR-0033.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="timer-on-table"> </picture> <p>For someone just starting out with the ketogenic diet, it can take between three to seven days before you start achieving ketosis. It might even take up to ten days. It depends on a few variables, which we’ll look at in the keys below.<sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/ketogenic-diet-is-the-ultimate-low-carb-diet-good-for-you-2017072712089#comment-176613" rel="nofollow noreferrer">4</a></sup> <sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK499830/" rel="nofollow noreferrer">5</a></sup></p> <p>People’s experience switching their bodies into fat burning mode will differ because our bodies are so different. Getting into ketosis can be challenging for some, so we have a “<a target="_blank" href="https://www.warriormade.com/content/diet/87-things-to-avoid-on-the-keto-diet/" rel="noreferrer">How To Get Into Ketosis</a>” guide if you want more information on that.</p> <p>To accelerate the process of getting into ketosis, you may consider upping your fat intake, fasting, or exercising to deplete your body’s stores of glycogen quicker<sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK499830/" rel="nofollow noreferrer">5</a></sup>.</p> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section id="section4"> <h2>4 Tips to Get You Into Ketosis Faster</h2> <h3># 1. Eat 20–50 grams of carbs per day </h3> <p>If you’ve never used the keto diet before, this is the obvious first step. For at least your first few days on the diet, limit your carbohydrate intake to between twenty to fifty grams of carbs. This range seems to be especially efficient at helping people achieve ketosis faster<sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK499830/" rel="nofollow noreferrer">5</a></sup>.</p> <h3># 2. Try Intermittent Fasting</h3> <p>To get the blood ketones to start appearing faster, consider, well...<i>fasting</i>. </p> <p>Fasting means a predetermined or scheduled allotment of time where you simply don’t eat. If you’re aiming to achieve ketosis as fast as you can, this would obviously help deplete the body of stored glycogen.</p> <p>For a total beginner, a simple sixteen-hour fast is plenty. You don’t want to go a whole day without eating right away. And if sixteen hours seems like a long time, do it overnight. Stop eating at 8 p.m., then plan to have your next meal at noon the next day.</p> <picture class="lazy-load"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/legs-running-stairs-0033.webp" type="image/webp"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/legs-running-stairs-0033.jpf" type="image/jpf"> <source data-srcset="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/legs-running-stairs-0033.jpg"> <img src="https://d1ghrtdbdq2gkr.cloudfront.net/blog-content/legs-running-stairs-LR-0033.jpg" class="img-fluid" alt="running-stairs"> </picture> <h3># 3. Exercise</h3> <p>It stands to reason that some extra physical activity will help deplete the body of its stored energy quicker. A long walk, brisk run, or some other type of endurance activity is sure to offer a “boost” alongside your keto diet. </p> <p>If you’ve never been in ketosis before, you may want to stick with a few long walks instead of hitting the gym or running the hills. At first, it may feel strange to exercise as your body moves towards burning fat for energy, and you may notice a decrease in performance.</p> <h3># 4. Exogenous Ketones</h3> <p>Taking exogenous ketones as a supplement is a proven way to achieve ketosis.<sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5670148/" rel="nofollow noreferrer">6</a></sup> Exogenous ketones are a supplement that gives your body a dose of ketones that your body produces when you’re in ketosis. </p> <p>They can help keep you in ketosis and even help correct the mistake of eating too many carbs. You can read more about how these supplements work <a target="_blank" href="https://www.warriormade.com/content/diet/the-truth-about-exogenous-ketones-an-inside-look/#section2" rel="noreferrer">here</a>.</p> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section id="section5"> <h2>How do you know when your body is in ketosis?</h2> <p>In this section, we’ll talk about two ways you’ll know if you’re in ketosis. The truth is, you won’t ever actually <i>know</i> without testing your blood. But there are some signals your body gives off when the state is achieved.<sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5670148/" rel="nofollow noreferrer">6</a></sup></p> <h3>Testing Ketones</h3> <p>Here’s the short version of testing for ketosis. Ketones are found in both blood and urine. There are plenty of home solutions available that allow you to actually test if the body is running off ketones. This <a target="_blank" href="https://www.warriormade.com/content/diet/how-to-measure-ketosis-with-a-home-ketone-meter/" rel="noreferrer">ketone measuring guide</a> explains more.</p> <p>You can find ketone test strips, blood measuring kits, and more with a simple Google search. It can be a complicated topic depending on your current health and if you are dealing with something like Type 2 diabetes. </p> <p>Testing ketones in and of itself requires its own guide, so for now, we’ll keep it to that.</p> <h3>Signs You’re in Ketosis</h3> <p>Short of actual testing strips or a measurement tool, it can be tough to <i>know</i> you’re in ketosis. Nevertheless, there are some telltale signs and symptoms of being in ketosis. </p> <p>Some of the signs you are in ketosis include increased focus or energy (because you’re no longer in a sugar crash), not feeling hungry, and weight loss.<sup><a target="_blank" href="https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323544.php" rel="nofollow noreferrer">7</a></sup></p> <p>Unfortunately, not all of the signs are as rosy or amazing-sounding as “body fat is melting off of you.” There are some less exciting side effects, too.</p> <p>For example, <a target="_blank" href="https://www.warriormade.com/content/diet/keto-breath-an-inside-look-at-the-science/" rel="noreferrer">bad breath</a> is a very common symptom of being in a state of ketosis. So too are fatigue and decreased performance, though in the long-term, that tends to go away. </p> <p>Finally, if you experience digestive issues or can’t sleep, that’s also fairly common when your body is adjusting.</p> </section> <hr class="divider-50 divider-medium mx-auto"> <section id="section6"> <h2>The Bottom Line</h2> <p>Just know that while everyone’s body is a little different, the keto diet combined with a little exercise can help you get into ketosis faster.</p> <p>For most people, it takes between three to seven days to achieve ketosis but could take up to ten days. To accelerate the process, you might consider fasting, limiting carbs to as low as twenty grams per day, and going for a few long walks.</p> <p>Remember that the ketogenic diet and ketosis is meant to be a lifestyle, not something you jump in and out of. Even if it takes the full ten days before you feel like a fat-burning machine, it’s better than getting there quickly and bouncing out of it within a day or two.</p> </section> </article>

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