When starting the Keto Diet you will typically go through three Detoxing Phases;
Within this series, I will share with you what each phase looks like, why they are important, and how to get the most out of each phase.
In this blog, we will be discussing detoxing substances on a keto diet.
What does it mean to Detox Substances on a Keto Diet?
The fundamentals of detoxification are “the removal of a toxin from your body”, however, we also classify detoxing as “the removal of something unhealthy from your life”.
When we use the term “detoxing substances” in this blog, we are referring to the substance “sugar”, and we do this because sugar is the core detox focus point.
Naturally, your body will purge out all other toxins from your body while starting a keto diet, and there are ways you can advance this through basic detoxing techniques, which we provide some details on below; however, the key to being successful at keto dieting is to be successful at detoxing your body and brain’s reliance on sugar.
The fundamentals of keto dieting that set it apart from all other diets are that it uses ketones for energy instead of glucose. So, in order for your body to start using ketones for energy, it is essential for you to restrict/detox your body’s reliance on sugar.
Why is it important to Detox Sugars on a Keto Diet?
It’s important to detox your body’s reliance on sugar because it makes keto dieting mentally and physically easier.
Before starting a keto diet, your body naturally looks for sugar as a source of energy. So, when transitioning to keto, your body and brain are still programmed to draw you to sugary foods.
This is where the importance of detoxing comes in. As you reprogram your body and brain to associate food sources such as proteins and fats as your main source of energy, you will need to be consistent and reaffirm to your body and brain that sugar is no longer the primary source of energy.
Often, people start following a keto diet for a couple of days, then because the first few days are hard, they add in old sugar or carb based foods. They eat out, attend a party, or have a “day off”, and what this does is trigger your body and brain to search for sugars as a primary source of energy again before your body and brain have had the time they need to be reprogrammed into relying on ketones instead.
This will confuse your body and your brain, and in doing so, your transition to being fat adapted will stall, meaning you will remain low in energy and your brain will drive you crazy with sugar cravings, thinking it needs it for energy.
How can I Detox Sugars on a Keto Diet?
There are basic 101’s regarding detoxification of toxins from your body such as;
Drinking loads of water
Having hot baths
Eating detoxifying foods (keto based of course)
All of the above are great to focus on for the first week to remove all the toxins you have absorbed overtime and will omit due to starting keto, however, in keeping with our focus point of detoxing sugars the key is to;
Train your body to not use sugar as an energy source
Train your body to start using ketones as an energy source
The way this is done is by restricting your sugar and carbohydrate intake and at the same time making ketones readily available by increasing your fat intake.
It’s not good enough to just cut carbs, as Keto is not just a low carb diet; it’s a low carb, moderate protein, and high fat diet. You need to give your body and brain the confidence that they have another energy source available, and you do this by providing it with ample amounts of healthy fats.
Based on our Keto Dieting style for beginners, we recommend your diet consists of;
In our 4-Week Keto Kickstarter Program, we do all the macro calculations and meal plan creation for you.
Common mistakes when Detox Carbohydrates on a Keto Diet
The two most common mistake I see when people try to detox carbohydrates from their diet while aiming to get into ketosis is that they either;
1. Consume carbohydrates outside of their allowance
This happens most of the time due to not tracking the carbs they consume accurately For example, not calculating their macros correctly, having foods that contain hidden sugars or sugar alcohols, or just straight out caving and giving into into carbs and sugars.
2. Treat the Keto Dieting as a low carb diet and don’t consume the fat needed
How long do I need to Detox Substances for on a Keto Diet?
You don’t need an extensively long time to detox your body and brain’s reliance on sugar. If you stick to your carbohydrate limits and have the required amounts of fat, you can expect to achieve this detox in 7 days. Any cravings after this timeframe are not substance based cravings anymore, but instead are habits and thoughts that need to be addressed, which we will cover in this blog series.
However, each time you relapse, it can trigger the detoxing process again, and if you don’t have the required amounts of fats it will prolong or even completely hinder your ability to transition into being fat adapted.
What are the symptoms/side effects of detoxing from sugar on a Keto Diet?
The most common symptoms you may experience while detoxing (even if done correctly) are:
Increased need to urinate
The intensity and duration of these symptoms vary depending on your diet before starting keto. It’s important to know that sugar is the hardest substance to detox from, the effect can be equal to or even greater than when detoxing from most drugs.
The symptoms you will experience if you DON’T detox correctly (i.e not having enough fats, and exceeding your carbohydrate limit);
Increased duration of symptoms (as stated above)
Inability to become keto adapted
Frustration and confusion
Ultimately giving up keto dieting due to it not working