Are you experiencing "keto poop"? Keto poop is constipation or diarrhea on a keto diet? These issues can be common but there are some fixes for these. Let's take a look at some of the digestive issues with the keto diet.
If you're new to the keto diet read our post on the beginner's guide to the keto diet.
Keto Poop: About the Keto Diet and Digestion
The Keto Diet can do wonders but be prepared for some hiccups Let’s be clear: the Keto diet is not a piece of cake. It’s not as quick, easy, and convenient as many people make it out to be. It sure has great benefits, but it does have its baggage. The keto diet can upset your digestive system. The good news is that this lasts only a short time.
Still, suffering through loose stools or diarrhea can be a hassle. Both could be temporary effects of switching to a Keto diet. It’s a good idea to focus on the rewards keto brings to the table as your stomach and digestive tract get used to your new meal plans.
A quick recap of keto diet benefits. The Keto diet can be a game-changer for anyone wanting to lose weight, get rid of inflammation, or improve overall heart health. It’s also a great idea for those looking for healthier and younger-looking skin. What’s more, keto can also make you mentally alert and fresh.
But there is a trade-off. Keto’s drawbacks mostly involve issues with the digestive system. These can take the form of either constipation or diarrhea-or even both at different times.
Keto poop is real. Don’t be all that shocked if you have to visit the bathroom or sit on the toilet more often or far longer than you’d like after you switch to this diet. Dietitians and weight loss experts call this keto poop. Fortunately, there’s a lot you could do about it.
What causes keto constipation?
Keto foods are usually low in fiber. Fiber is what adds bulk to one’s food. Cutting down on bulk can lead to constipation because the stuff in the belly feels like being in a crowded room. Furthermore, the keto diet can cause you to reduce water intake and it flushed water out of the body. Another reason is that a keto diet reduces water intake. Less water in the system means tighter poop that finds it a struggle to get out.
Finally, another reason is that a low-carb diet expels a lot of electrolytes like magnesium, sodium, and potassium. These minerals, particularly magnesium, pull water into the intestines, making the feces soft and easy to expel. With reduced water, the bowels become dry and the excrement becomes harder.
Here’s How You Should Tackle Keto Constipation Problems
Since constipation results from cutting down on fiber, drinking less water, and getting fewer minerals into the system, just focus on replenishing what you’ve cut out. Drink more water and eat more low carb vegetables. Since veggies tend to be packed with water, loading up on dark green or colored vegetables can keep you properly hydrated.
You should also increase the fiber and mineral content of your meals. Try eating more vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, collard, kale, and fennel. Including berries such as strawberries, blackberries, and strawberries can help. Not only are these tasty low-carb alternatives, but they are also packed with nutrients.
Another solution to constipated keto poop is to take mineral supplements. If the problem persists, you should look into taking mineral supplements like magnesium citrate or glycinate, but make sure you don’t overdo it. Taking excessive supplements can lead to purging.
Why does the Keto diet lead to diarrhea?
There are three ways a keto diet can cause diarrhea. The first is due to lower fiber intake. Not only does this cause of constipation, strangely enough, it can also cause diarrhea. The second cause is the sudden change in your diet’s composition.
After you switch over to keto, you will be consuming more fat than your system’s used to. Your body needs time to get used to the change, and this is when the diarrhea hits. It lasts for just a couple of weeks. The third reason is the increased intake of medium-chain triglycerides, which is usually a part of a high-fat low carb diet.
What’s the Solution to Keto Diarrhea?
First off, eat more green vegetables. To digest the extra fat in the food, you need to take lipase. This is an enzyme that breaks down fat. Remember that the problem is temporary, so this enzyme should be taken for just a week. Of course, if the problem involves your intake of medium-chain triglycerides, you might want to cut down on foods that contain this type of fat.
How does keto help improve digestion?
Keto does more than give a good complexion and a healthy heart or help in losing weight. It improves overall digestion. Many of the other benefits keto can deliver happen due to improved digestion. It does this in three ways: by feeding good bacteria, starving bad bacteria, and maintaining gut integrity.
Your bowels are home to trillions of bacteria that come in thousands of varieties. There are the good bugs and the bad bugs among your ‘microflora.’ They influence not only your digestion but also your general health and mood. What’s more, the types of bacteria that depend on several factors including your diet and environment. The good ones produce better health. That’s how keto diet improves digestion by promoting good bacteria and suppressing or controlling bad bacteria.
How does Keto get this done?
Keto is a friend of good bacteria. It consists of vegetables and other foods that are low on carbs and high on fat and fiber. That kind of diet promotes good bacteria. Diets that are low on carbs and high on fats also help prevent intestinal inflammation, which can damage the intestines.
How about the bad bacteria?
Bad bacteria thrive on sugar. Ketogenic diets are low on carbs and sugar. Switching to a low carb high-fat diet ends up starving bad gut microorganisms.
Keto also protects the gut lining.
For the same – well, similar – reason, a keto diet also protects the gut lining. A diet that is low on sugar – read keto diet - prevents damage to the inner linings of the stomach. This also prevents leakage of food or unhealthy compounds into the bloodstream.
Here’s the final rundown on Keto
We've discussed keto poop and the issues of conspiration and diarrhea that the keto diet can cause. Unless your keto poop symptoms persist for a long time or seem to be abnormally bad, it’s okay to stick to keto diet because these side effects are temporary and can be easily be treated. For both forms of stomach ailments, it's important to increase your fiber intake. This can be easily done by eating more low carb keto veggies but you could also take a fiber supplement. It's also important for overall health that you increase the intake of water and electrolytes.
John Ward has been experimenting with low carbohydrate diets since the early 2000s. He successfully used a low carb diet to lose 50lbs in the past and currently follows a keto diet for a variety of reasons including general health and managing mood levels.