Learn about the effects of the Keto diet and the menstrual cycle

Learn about the effects of the Keto diet and the menstrual cycle

"We are what we eat." This is a phrase that you have surely heard countless times, and it is true. For that reason, it is not unreasonable to think that every time we make crucial changes in our diet, certain functions of our body may be altered.

There are diets or food plans that have emerged, always seeking to maintain a healthy diet. Among these many diets that have come out, one that has become very popular is the Keto diet.

However, many women trying this diet have experienced crucial changes in their menstrual cycle. 

Here, we want to explain more about these changes so that if you want to apply this eating plan, you are prepared.

What is the Keto or ketogenic diet?

The ketogenic diet is an eating plan that consists of consuming mostly fatty foods. Between 60% and 80% of calories come from fat, and considerably decreases carbohydrates. 

Originally, this diet began to be implemented to improve certain health conditions, especially those related to the central nervous system, such as epilepsy, Parkinson's, or Alzheimer's disease. Other conditions that can be controlled thanks to this diet are diabetes and polycystic ovary syndrome.


Effects of the Keto diet on the menstrual cycle

This diet, in women, can generate certain changes both positive and negative, especially in the menstrual cycle. 

Therefore, it is recommended that before considering it as a lifestyle, it is important to consult with your doctor.

The following are some of the most common effects:

  • Amenorrhea or absence of period.
  • It is common to hear that some women who have managed to lose weight quickly thanks to the Keto diet have noticed the absence of their menstrual cycle in two or even three months. If this happens, it is best to visit a specialist to rule out a concerning problem or pregnancy.

    This situation is normal when eating habits are suddenly altered, especially considering that the keto diet decreases carbohydrates almost completely. 

    Experts recommend that to avoid this, in the first weeks of the diet, do not overexert yourself and restrict carbohydrates little by little, always with the help of a nutritionist.

  • Ovulation variations
  • Although there is not enough evidence, some studies proved that due to the sudden decrease of carbohydrates, the brain begins to decrease or vary the release of luteinizing hormone, which contributes to ovulation in women occurring regularly.

  • Regulation of the menstrual cycle in cases of polycystic ovaries 
  • In the case of women who have ovarian cysts or suffer from polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), the keto diet can be of great help. That is because usually, these problems are closely related to obesity.

    In addition, with PCOS, there is an excess of insulin and increased levels of androgens and testosterone, decreasing the production of estrogen, which in turn decreases ovulation. 

    So, the keto diet can help with this, improving estrogen production, regulating ovulation, and contributing to the improvement of fertility in women. 

    Undoubtedly, the Keto diet can bring many benefits to women but being an unconventional diet, it is essential to have a nutritionist to guide them throughout the process and avoid negative effects.

    We want to know your experience with the Keto diet and whether has it affected your menstrual cycle in any way, write us and be part of the Ecowoman community.

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