Can The Ketogenic Diet Cause Constipation?

Are you having problems going to the toilet? Are you also following a Ketogenic Diet? You may be thinking at this stage “Can the Ketogenic Diet cause constipation?”. The Keto Diet is very strict and can also have several side effects. You are going to see here if and how it can cause constipation.

Can The Ketogenic Diet Cause Constipation?

You might have always been regular going to the toilet but now you are struggling. Since you started the Keto Diet something has changed. You don’t go daily anymore and also the consistency of your feces is tougher than usual. Constipation is not a healthy and can also lead or aggravate other problems like hemorrhoids. It is important to keep a regular bowel. The question you have is “can the Ketogenic Diet cause constipation?”.

The Keto Diet promotes Ketosis, which is just a metabolic state where the body uses the fat to generate energy rather than using glucose. Ketosis is triggered by the lack of glucose, that mainly comes from carbs.

What can really cause constipation is the change of nutrition due to the Keto Diet. The Ketogenic Diet in fact is a strict diet. You need to follow specific macro ratios if you want to start and maintain Ketosis. The ratios are:

  • 70% Fat
  • 25% Proteins
  • 5% Carbs

While these ratio are ideal for your body to efficiently and constantly burn fat, these are ratio are very different from most normal habits. A generic diet involves consuming more carbs than fat and our body can react to the change in different ways.

The differences in the nutrition habit trigger Ketosis days or weeks after the diet starts. It is also important to remember that your body takes days to fully adapt to the new metabolism. During the period of adaptation you can suffer several side effects and one of these can be constipation.

There are a few reasons that can cause constipation on a Keto Diet, individually or combined between them.

Water Retention Change

Decreasing the carbs intake causes a decrease in the water retention. Your body will not be able to keep as much water as on a regular diet during the period of adaptation. Less water in circulation can make your feces dry and also slow down your bowel movements.

Change In Dietary Fibers

The Keto Diet is very restrictive. You need to cut carbs and avoid some types of vegetables and fruits. Unfortunately, carbs, vegetables and fruits are also rich in fibers. Cutting these foods results in less fibers and we all know that fibers help regulating bowel movements and regularity. Less fibers equals irregular bowel.

How Can I Deal With Constipation On A Keto Diet

Some episodes of diarrhea or, on the opposite side, constipation, can be normal on a Ketogenic Diet, especially in the first days of “adaptation”. Once the body adjusts to the new metabolism then you shouldn’t be suffering anymore.

You can help your body before and during adaptation with some simple tricks.

Eat More Fibers

A great help to maintain “regularity” is to eat enough fibers. Since you need to cut carbs and some vegetables and fruits, try to compensate with other food. Consume foods rich of fibers and low in carbs. You can also take some dietary fiber supplements, available in any pharmacy and most grocery stores.

Drink Enough Water

Water helps your overall health and it is important to drink enough water during the day. Adding water will help your bowel movements and will keep your feces wet and of a good consistency.

Conclusion

Can the Ketogenic Diet cause constipation? Yes it can, in a way. Constipation can be caused by the changes in the digestive system, decreased dietary fibers intake and less water retention. All of these can contribute to difficulties in defecating and constipation in general. Drink enough water and consume enough fibers so that your bowel can restore its regularity quickly.

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