Keto Diet Effects on Libido
Keto Diet Effects on Libido
Keto diet is a very low-carbohydrate diet that emphasizes a greater intake of healthy fats and quality protein sources, along with small amounts of “indirect” carbs from vegetables and certain fruits. Naturally, this means you’ll be eating much more fat and protein to meet your daily calorie needs. Most people on keto aim for anywhere between 60-80% of their total daily calories to come from healthy fat sources, such as coconut, grass-fed butter, avocado, nuts/seeds, and others; the rest comes from quality protein sources, like eggs, chicken, beef, fish, etc.
What do carbs have to do with sex? In a nutshell, eating too much, or eating the wrong types, can have a negative impact on your sex life. It can affect your weight, your mood, and your energy level. Whether or not you realize it, your diet impacts your sex drive in a major way. That’s right. If you don’t eat properly, it’s going to take a lot more than sexy lingerie and a cinnamon-scented candle to light your fire. But the opposite is also true. Eating the right balance of nutrients can help set the mood. That’s where low-carb diets come in.
What Are the 3 Types of Keto Diet?
Standard Ketogenic Dieting (SKD)
- If you’re trying to lose weight and/or you live a fairly sedentary lifestyle, then the standard keto diet is a good place to start. This is essentially the “true” keto diet in that you won’t be eating many carbs at all, usually 30 grams or less per day.
Targeted Ketogenic Dieting (TKD)
- The targeted keto diet allows for small carb-containing meals either before or after you work out. This is a good keto diet variation to follow if you find that your physical performance is hindered on the standard keto diet. For most people, adding 30-40 grams of carbs to their pre-workout or post-workout meal should suffice. It’s also important to cut back on fat intake just a tad when to compensate for the added carbs.
Cyclical Ketogenic Dieting (CKD)
- a more progressive keto diet variation that incorporates cyclical carbohydrate refeeds. For example, you might follow the traditional/standard keto diet Monday-Friday and then eat a higher-carb diet on the weekends. However, it’s best to try the targeted keto diet before advancing to the cyclical keto diet.
In what way Ketogenic diet increases your sex drive?
When you eat carbs, your digestive system breaks down the digestible carbs which enter your bloodstream. As your blood sugar rises, your pancreas produces insulin, a hormone that allows your cells to absorb the sugar. In response, your body produces the hormone glucagon, which helps keep your blood sugar and energy levels in check. Simple carbohydrates, such as cane sugar and high-fructose corn syrup, cause your blood sugar to spike up more rapidly than slower-moving complex carbohydrates, prevalent in starchy vegetables and whole grains.
The spike from eating simple carbs can cause your blood sugar to fall back down just as rapidly, which leads to a “groggy, crashing feeling” and a loss of energy. To maximize energy and thus fuel your sex drive. a diet low in carbs but high in other macronutrients, such as proteins and fat, steady blood sugar levels, providing slow, sustained all-day energy so you're focused, energized, and fulfilled. Your sex drive is very much determined by your energy levels. When your body doesn’t have the proper fuel, it can’t get itself ready for sexual activity.
Since sex drive is one aspect of your health, then, naturally, your diet will influence it too. For example, studies show that unhealthy diets that lead to metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes also lead to low testosterone, a hormone that regulates sex drive in both men and women. Nutrients in your food can also have a profound effect on your sexual health. Higher intake of docosapentaenoic acid (DPA), a type of omega-3 fatty acid found in fish, for example, was found to reduce a woman’s risk of anovulation. In women, the health of their menstrual cycle also plays a huge part in libido.
The effect of keto diet on sex hormones
For women, low levels of estrogen can have a big impact on sex drive. Insufficient estrogen levels can lead to vaginal dryness, bloating, and mood swings. A testosterone imbalance, on the other hand, can result in fatigue, loss of confidence, and infertility. The good news is the aid of that ketogenic food in the healthy balance of these sex hormones.
The “good fats” that makeup 75 percent of the ketogenic diet can help increase libido. They can also aid in the amelioration of vaginal issues such as dryness and painful intercourse. These healthy fats are found in keto-friendly foods such as salmon, trout, herring, olive oil, avocados, and walnuts.
In addition, keto-friendly foods such as soybeans, peanuts, chickpeas, alfalfa, and broad beans contain isoflavones, which can increase vaginal lubrication. Increased intake of these foods can help manage estrogen levels, having sex more pleasurable.
Healthy Fats and Sexual Function
Erectile dysfunction, blood circulation, and sex drive can all be improved with the ketogenic diet. Omega-3 fatty acids are excellent for heart health and improved blood circulation. These healthy fats are abundant in fish, nuts, eggs, olive oil, and avocados, which are staples of the ketogenic diet. Omega-3s are also a building block for those helpful sex hormones and even help raise dopamine levels in the brain that trigger sexual arousal.
Written by Dude Arnel Flores Lopez, BSN, RN 18 April 2021
Medically reviewed and updated by Dr.Deyn Natthakhet Yaemim, 20 April 2021