By switching to a ketogenic low-carb diet, you are essentially transitioning yourself from a water-retaining diet, to a water-flushing diet. There are a variety of reasons for this, including reduction of inflammation (water tends to be bound up in inflammation) and the depletion of glycogen stores (glycogen retains water) in your liver and muscles.
Because you are not eating a diet that causes you to retain water, you’re going to find yourself urinating quite frequently (maybe even once per hour or more when you start!). As a consequence of this, you’re going to lose electrolytes. You’ll want to replenish them.
Often time people know when they are low on electrolytes because of various accompanying symptoms that may include a range of things including muscle cramps, low energy, headaches, difficulty concentrating, and more.
When I find myself feeling off, I usually try to rectify it by eating or drinking something that helps replenish my Sodium, Magnesium and Potassium levels. To help with this, I keep the following three products stocked in the pantry and ready to use. You may wish to consider keeping something like this on hand.
|Emergen-C Electro Mix
Electro Mix is a convenient way to get a host of electrolytes while avoiding the sugar that’s so often mixed with electrolyte drinks. Emergen-C Electro Mix is sweetened with stevia and contains a host of electrolytes in the following quantities:
Bouillon cubes come from a variety of vendors and with ~1000mg of sodium, they can meet up to 50% of your daily sodium intake. When I’m feeling sluggish and logy and suspect electrolytes, I’ll usually try mixing one of these cubes in a mug full of hot water.As for brands, I usually alternate between this brand and Wylers. Whichever is cheaper works for me.
Note that as with any processed food, there are some ingredients in these that I otherwise try to avoid. This may include small amounts of sugars and food preservatives… just remember that at 1-cube per cup of hot water, you’re ingesting a relatively small dose. If you check the label on a different brand and see a carb count over 1g, try a different brand.
|Mortons Lite Salt
Lite salt is essentially normal salt cut with 50% like normal salt, except it’s only half sodium chloride (NaCl). The other half of this salt is comprised of Potassium. A 1/4tsp-sized serving gives you roughly 10% of your RDA for each.
- Tips and Tricks for Starting or Restarting Low Carb (Part II) – June 25, 2011 – Dr. Michael Eades. This is the defacto guide from on electrolyte supplementation by one of the visionaries of low-carbohydrate diets.