How Long Does it Take to Enter Ketosis?

It can take anywhere from a few hours up to three days for your body to enter ketosis. It is important to note, though, that the exact time that it takes to enter ketosis is highly dependent on the individual.

Most people who are looking to enter ketosis want to do so as quickly and efficiently as possible, but getting there is dependent on each individuals fitness levels and body metabolism rates. What determines how long it takes to get into ketosis is your starting point and what your end goal is. If you are trying to lose weight or lose body fat, then it will take some time for your body to enter ketosis. If you’re trying to gain weight, then a shorter period will be necessary.

Before looking at how long it takes in general, a little background information is needed. As mentioned previously, there are two types of fat storage: white and brown adipose tissue (BAT). White fat is the portion of fat cells found in areas relatively protected. Brown fat is the metabolically active portion of fat cells, and it can produce heat.

Measuring Ketone Levels

White fat is where you keep most of the stored body fat.  Brown fat, on the other hand, has little blood flow and can therefore produce heat more easily. Brown fat has been shown to increase in size when there’s no caloric intake and decrease when calories are being consumed. This can be seen as an indicator that one is entering ketosis.

The method that most people use to see whether they’re in ketosis is by measuring their ketone levels using a blood testing device, such as a Precision Xtra or a Keto Mojo. This method is considered to be highly accurate since you can easily and quickly measure the levels of beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) and acetoacetate (ACA) in your blood. These two compounds are the primary ketones found in the human body. A high BHB level indicates that your liver is making ketones to use as energy, while an increased ACA level indicates that your body is breaking down fat for energy.

One of the main ways that people test their ketone levels is to use a blood-testing device. These devices measure the ketones in your bloodstream, which will result in a value that is usually expressed as nanograms per microliter (ng/mL). The unit of measurement for these devices is in comparison to a reference range, and the higher or lower than that range it falls means that you’re breaking into ketosis. Depending on where you are in the country, your local city or county public health department or public health agency may offer a free glucose tolerance test for assessing general diabetes.

Ketone Meter

One of the most popular devices that people use to measure ketone levels is a ketone meter. These meters can purchased online or at a local nutrition store. This handheld device is similar to a pH indicator or litmus paper in that it changes color depending on your acidity. It measures your concentration levels and will indicate whether you are in the range for entering ketosis. These devices are effective for some people, but for others, their method of use can lead to inaccurate measurements.

Factors That Affect Entering Ketosis


Knowing how long it takes to enter ketosis can be beneficial if you’re looking to follow a ketogenic diet. However, this information is also relevant if you’re trying to learn more about the effects of dieting and nutrition in general. There are several reasons that your body may not enter ketosis as quickly as you’d like, including:

Too Much Fat Consumption

To enter ketosis, it is recommended that your intake of dietary fat should be around 60-70%. If your fat consumption is any higher than this, then it will take longer for your body to enter ketosis.

Excess Alcohol Use

It has been shown through research that if you consume a lot of alcohol while on the ketogenic diet, it can take longer to enter ketosis. Consuming excess alcohol may stop you from entering ketosis entirely.

4 Ways To Get Into Ketosis Faster

If you find that your body is not entering ketosis as quickly as you’d like, then there are a few things that you can do to speed up the process. These things include:

Reduce Caloric Intake

To enter ketosis, it is recommended that your daily caloric intake should be around 1,200-1,600 calories.  For many people, this is accomplished by simply reducing your daily caloric intake by 5-10%

Increasing your intake of MCTs

MCTs, or medium-chain triglycerides, is the type of fat found in coconut oil. A study conducted on athletes showed that taking a dose of MCTs before exercise can increase your ketone levels within an hour.  Also, they help you to enter ketosis faster after you’ve finished exercising.

Increasing your exercise intensity

If you’re not exercising very intensely regularly, it can be hard to enter ketosis. Increasing the intensity of your workouts will help you to enter ketosis even faster.

Eating more fiber

Fiber is an important part of the ketogenic diet and should be included in your daily intake of food. Additionally, fiber helps keep your digestive system in good working order.  Supplements, raw vegetables and fruit encourages proper digestion.  Finally, consistently following a health diet will keep your body in optimal working order.


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