Keto dieters cut carbs to only about 10 percent of their diet.
A ketogenic diet can help with weight loss and the prevention of diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. It may also protect brain function, reduce acne, and boost your confidence and energy.
The keto diet works by depleting your body of its store of sugar so it will start to break down protein and fat for energy. This causes ketosis and weight loss.
Your brain and body’s primary source of energy is sugar. It is critical, therefore, to drink electrolytes in order to keep your body systems functioning normally.
Why should you drink electrolytes when you are on keto? Let’s take a look.
1. PREVENTING THE “KETO FLU”
Electrolytes help with muscle contractions, heartbeat regulations, temperature control, energy production, and neurological function.
Electrolytes are minerals in the body that are critical for heart health, bladder regulation, and brain functioning.
When your body loses electrolytes during a keto diet, you are at risk of contracting the “keto flu.” While you are adjusting to a lack of carbs and switching to running on fats, you may experience symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, irritability, brain fog, and sugar cravings. You should also look out for migraines, heart palpitations, dizziness, constipation, or bloating.
When you are on keto, your body will produce less insulin because you are removing carbs almost completely from your diet. Your body will produce less insulin, and your glycogen stores are empty.
Your body will begin to secrete water through your urine, sweat, and breath. You will lose a lot of water weight and feel less bloated.
While this may be a good thing for losing weight, you will also be excreting vitamins and minerals known as electrolytes along with the water. Electrolyte deficiency is the main cause of the “keto flu.”
It is critical, therefore, to eat lots of food rich in electrolytes. These may include vegetables, nuts, and dark chocolate on the keto diet.
2. SALTY MATTERS
When extra water is passed out of your body, electrolytes and sodium go with it. Sodium is important for nerve function, muscle contraction, and preventing dehydration. It can also help your nervous system and prevent low blood pressure.
Symptoms of a sodium deficiency include fatigue, headaches, difficulty concentrating, and stress.
Keto-friendy foods rich in sodium include almonds, cashews, and seeds. You may also want to include fatty fish like salmon, as well as dark green leafy vegetables.
3. CALCIUM CARE
A calcium deficiency can cause numbness and tingle in the hands, arms, feet, and legs. You may also notice pain in your thighs and arms while you are walking.
Calcium is critical for building bones, regulating nerve function, and proper muscle contraction. Keto-friendly sources include almond milk, coconut milk, and supplements. Make sure any supplements include Vitamin D for proper absorption.
Dark leafy greens, broccoli, and fatty fish like salmon are also low-carb sources of calcium. Be sure to add some to each meal to avoid feeling depleted.
4. POTASSIUM PLANNING
A potassium deficiency will leave you with muscle cramps, twitching, and heart palpitations. It is important for maintaining healthy blood pressure levels, regulating heart health, and ensuring the right balance of fluids in the body.
Long term, potassium deficiencies can cause high blood pressure, constipation, and weakness.
Whole food, keto-friendly sources of potassium include leafy greens, nuts, salmon, and avocado. Veggies like cauliflower and zucchini are also great sources.
5. MAGNESIUM MATTERS
Signs of a magnesium deficiency include cramping, food cravings, and constipation. Magnesium is essential for muscle function, hormone regulation, and keeping bones strong.
Magnesium helps you maintain a healthy immune system, a normal heart rate, and proper nerve and muscle function. It is important for building strong, healthy bones.
Good sources of magnesium include pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, leafy greens, and nuts.
Electrolytes are important during bouts of high intensity and prolonged activity. The amount of fluid in your body compartments is regulated by the electrolytes there. Water will flow into a specific system when the electrolyte concentration is high.
Maintaining appropriate concentrations of electrolytes is important to maintaining fluid balances within compartments.
Electrolytes help maintain fluid balances through osmosis. This is the process by which water moves through the wall of a cell membrane. It goes from a more dilute solution, which has more water and fewer electrolytes, to a more concentrated solution with less water.
The process prevents cells from bursting or shriveling up due to dehydration.
You will need to increase your water intake on a keto diet. It is the best way to prevent dehydration and constipation, which leads to “keto flu” symptoms. It can also help prevent issues with imbalances.
Whole vegetables are also a great source of water.
7. MUSCLE FUNCTION
The proper balances of sodium and potassium are critical for muscle function. These minerals are essential for muscle contraction. They move in and out of the cell membrane to create positive and negative charges that lead to action.
Calcium floods cells, resulting in interactions that cause muscle contractions. Magnesium and chlorine help to maintain the relaxed state of muscles.
DRINK ELECTROLYTES ON A KETO DIET
It is critical to drink electrolytes on a keto diet. Essential minerals such as sodium, potassium, magnesium, and calcium will help your body and mind to remain at their best while you are losing weight. You will also prevent the dreaded “keto flu” and keep yourself from becoming dehydrated.
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