Ketosis and Bad Breath – Why Put Yourself Through That?

One of the things the paleo movement pushes hard is going low carb to achieve ketosis. Ketosis is caused by following a low carb diet.

What happens is your body at some point begins to burn fat for fuel, when you don’t include many carbs in your diet.

So by eating low carb, you become a “fat burner” instead of a “sugar burner”.

This is what paleo followers like to call becoming fat adapted.

It’s a state that takes 3-4 days of eating close to zero carbs.

…meals like this bacon covered meatloaf, pictured below.

paleo and ketosis

[A lot of paleo followers have a serious fascination with bacon. I like bacon, but don’t plan on eating it daily.]

So…you are eating low carb, burning fat for fuel instead of carbs. It sounds like an awesome way to get lean.

There are a couple problems with the ketogenic diet.

  1. It causes bad breath (in some cases really bad breath).
  2. It really isn’t necessary.

Let’s talk about the bad breath thing first.

bad breath from ketosis

When you follow a low-carb diet, the fat gets broken into ketones. The ketones get into the urine and saliva which can cause nasty breath.

Since the bad breath isn’t oral hygiene based, you can’t cure this bad breath by brushing your teeth more or flossing.

Drinking plenty of water can help, but won’t eliminate the problem completely.

…but there may be a good reason to NOT follow a ketogenic diet in the first place!

Is a ketogenic diet even necessary?


Just because you burn lots of fat instead of carbs, doesn’t mean you are going to LOSE more body fat.

Here is a study from 2014 that addresses this:

Low carbohydrate versus isoenergetic balanced diets for reducing weight and cardiovascular risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

It came to this conclusion.

There is probably little or no difference in weight loss and changes in cardiovascular risk factors up to two years of follow-up when overweight and obese adults, with or without type 2 diabetes, are randomised to low CHO diets and isoenergetic balanced weight loss diets.

This paper was a comprehensive review of many different studies comparing low car diets with balanced diets.

They were unable to detect any difference in fat loss or health benefits following a low carb diet…vs a more balanced diet.

In other words, if the calories are the same, low carb and high carb diets have the same effect on fat loss!

So you really have to question whether the bad breath ketosis thing is worth it?

Click Here for a review of the Half Day Diet.