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The ups and downs of dieting can be stressful – especially if you don’t understand what’s going on with your body. If you’re feeling discouraged while on the keto diet, don’t worry. You may be on the path toward triggering a commonly known side effect of dieting – the whoosh effect. Learn everything you need to know about this weight loss phenomenon, including how to trigger the whoosh effect on keto.
What is a Keto Whoosh?
In plain and simple terms, the whoosh occurs when you have a sudden weight loss – seemingly overnight.
To really explain what the whoosh effect is while on keto, we need to get a little bit scientific. The fat cells in our body are usually filled with triglycerides. These triglycerides are what fuels your body by giving your energy. But those triglycerides also make your fat cells larger, which can lead to weight gain.
When you’re on a diet, like keto, you’ll eventually start burning more calories than you’re consuming, which causes your fat cells to start losing triglycerides. This makes your fat cells begin to shrink.
While some people think that your fat cells start to absorb water in place of triglycerides and then collapse to cause the whoosh effect, that’s actually a myth.
Instead, water retention is typically the cause of the whoosh effect.
A change in diet, exercise, and overall water intake usually trigger water retention – especially when starting a new diet program, like keto. When you start increasing your water intact, your fat cells start to absorb that extra water to maintain homeostasis within your body and replace the source of energy that those triglycerides previously provided.
The whoosh effect is simply your body releasing that extra water weight as it begins to adjust to your new diet and exercise routine.
With that being said, it’s important to keep in mind that the whoosh effect is not your body losing fat cells. Instead, it’s your body losing excess water, causing those fat cells to shrink when that excess water has been removed.
Is the Keto Whoosh Different that Other Diet Programs?
While you will probably experience the whoosh effect on other diet programs, the effect of the whoosh may be more dramatic on keto. Since you’re restricting carbohydrates while on keto, you’re more likely to retain water in your fat cells when you first start the program. This water retention can often cause you to reach a weight-loss plateau or even make you gain weight.
That means that when your body finally releases that excess water, you’ll likely see a bigger weight loss as a result of the whoosh than on other diets.
You can learn more about keto and get our favorite recipes with our Keto Quick Start Guide for Beginners!
How to Trigger the Whoosh Effect
Now that you know what the whoosh effect is, you’re probably wondering how to trigger it – especially if you feel like you’re stuck or gaining weight. Luckily, there are a few simple steps you can take to help trigger the effect.
The key to triggering the whoosh effect while on keto is to make sure you’re:
- In ketosis. To trigger the effect, you need to make sure your body is in ketosis, or starvation mode. Limiting carbs and calories will cause your body to produce ketones to naturally maintain your energy throughout the day, which means your body will also start retaining water, which is the first step toward causing the whoosh effect.
- In a caloric deficit. It’s also essential that you have a calorie deficit each day. That means you’ll need to be burning more calories than you’re consuming. So, it’s essential to stick to your keto diet and stick to an exercise program.
After you have those two factors established, you can take these simple steps to trigger the whoosh effect to help you lose that water weight:
- Eat a high calorie meal. While it’s not a good idea to make high-calorie meals a common occurrence, a single meal high in calories could trigger your body to flush out that extra water.
- Restrict water intake during your cheat meal. In addition to upping your calories during your cheat meal, it’s also important to restrict your water intake. This will keep your body from retaining additional water while it’s working to flush out the extra fluids.
- Go back to your keto diet after the cheat meal. In order for the cheat meal to trigger the whoosh effect, you need to go right back to your keto diet after you consume your high calorie meal.
Signs of the Whoosh Effect
Are you wondering whether your sudden weight loss was triggered by the whoosh effect? There are a few simple signs you can look for to help you determine if you recently experienced the weight loss phenomenon.
These common signs are indicators of the whoosh effect:
- Noticeable weight gain in the days or weeks before the significant weight loss occurred, especially if you have been sticking to your diet and exercise routine
- Bloating or squishiness in your body, especially in your tummy and thighs
- The frequent urge to urinate throughout the day and through the night
- Night sweats, which is a way for your body to get rid of excess water
- Diarrhea, another method your body uses to lose excess water weight
Some or all of these symptoms are a good indicator that you have experience the whoosh effect as a result of your keto diet.
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