The keto diet is on the rise right now. Originally developed to treat epilepsy patients who don’t respond to traditional medications, this trending low-carb diet is designed to put the body into a state of ketosis, a state that burns fat rather than carbohydrates. However, the keto diet is not without side effects. The keto diet may put followers at risk for kidney problems, dehydration, “keto flu” and more. That’s not all, though. Some keto dieters are talking about a strange side effect known as keto crotch.
Is Keto Crotch Real?
Some people have noticed an increase in their vaginal odor and discharge on a keto diet. Keto crotch has not been the subject of scientific investigation. However, it is possible that keto crotch may be bacterial vaginosis (BV).
Bacteria called lactobacilli are important for ensuring an acidic vaginal environment, which helps maintain the natural vaginal microbiota. BV occurs when the environment in the vagina changes and other bacteria take over from lactobacilli.
The potential hydrogen (pH) scale measures how acidic or alkaline things are. The typical vaginal pH during childbearing is about 4.5 pH. According to an earlier study from 2007, a diet high in fat may contribute to high vaginal pH. The study found that participants with a diet high in fat had an average vaginal pH of 5.1. A vaginal pH above 4.5 may be an indicator of BV.
The study suggests that a high-fat diet may increase the risk of bacterial infections associated with BV by increasing the risk of other bacterial growth.
A 2020 review reinforced the link between high-fat diets and the occurrence of BV. However, it also noted that saturated fat may be an important link.
Since a keto diet involves consuming a lot of fat and little carbohydrate, there may be a link between the diet and BV.
A diet high in fat may alter the pH of the vagina, leading to an environment in which BV occurs.
Causes of Vaginal Odor
Some experts theorize that the keto diet changes the pH of the vagina (the balance of bacteria in the vagina), which can change the way your vagina smells. dr. If your vaginal pH is disrupted, you’re really at a higher risk for bacterial vaginosis (an overgrowth of bacteria in the vagina), which can have a funky smell. But unfortunately, no studies have shown that diet alone can change vaginal pH.
Vaginal odor may also be caused by these other factors:
- Antibiotic use
- Yeast infections
- New sexual partners
- Frequency of sex
- Sexually transmitted infections
- Changes in hormone levels due to pregnancy
If changes in vaginal odor are accompanied by itching, burning, redness, or swelling, you will want to see your health care provider to determine the exact cause.
What should I Do if I Think I Have Keto Crotch?
If you notice a strange odor down there, you may want to give it a few days to see if it goes away. Also, never douche. Flushing can expose you to a whole host of other problems and increase your risk of infection. Some women report that the smell goes away after a while, while others say it persists. If the smell doesn’t return to normal after a few days off the keto diet, that’s a good sign that something else may be causing it, as vaginal pH should return to normal after going back on your typical diet.
However, if the smell persists or you start to notice other symptoms such as itching, burning and abnormal discharge, it’s time to see your doctor. It’s entirely possible that you’re just unlucky enough to develop an infection or other gynecological problem while you’re on keto, and it’s not related to your diet. In either case, you need to see one. A change in vaginal odor can be a sign of bacterial vaginosis or an STD.
Four More Things to Treat a Keto Crotch
1. Eat a balanced diet
Not only keto, but many fad diets can also change the pH balance of the vagina. Therefore, it is best for you to adopt a balanced diet to restore the pH of your vagina. Including healthy carbohydrates in your diet won’t do any harm.
2. Watch your portion size
We need to be alert to the amount of portions we eat. Make sure you eat small portions so you don’t gain weight. Include all the nutrients to keep your vagina happy and healthy.
3. Use lactacyd or a vaginal wash
This is a short-term measure you can take to bring immediate relief. You can use Lactacyd or any medicated vaginal wash to bring the pH back to normal. But this is not a permanent solution.
4. Exercise daily
Regular exercise is important because it helps keep your metabolism healthy and then you won’t need these fad diets like ketones etc. to maintain your weight.