Is the Whoosh for Real?

The Whoosh … sounds funny, doesn’t it? It could be the name of a splashy, water park ride. 

But it’s actually a phrase that comes up often in the Fasting and Keto/Low Carb circles. If you haven’t heard it yet, trust us, you will. 

But what exactly is this magical whoosh? Is there any truth to it – or is it just wishful thinking? Let’s dive in. 

So what exactly is this thing called the whoosh?

The whoosh is a term for a sudden release of weight, normally after a few days of the scale staying the same or moving up some. 

You may go days with no positive changes in your weight and then you step on the scale and, boom, just like that you’re down one or two, or even three pounds. 

You’re probably thrilled but at the same time mystified as to how that just happened. 

So you go to your favorite Fasting or Keto group and ask, and the same answer pops up over and over again: “You had a whoosh!” 

How does the whoosh work? How does it happen?

So the theory (and keep in mind it’s just a theory) is as follows.

Fasting and Keto/Low-Carb can cause initial water retention. Fat cells, in an attempt to maintain themselves, will store water, sort of like a placeholder. Those nasty fat cells are waiting for you to fill them back up with fat. How rude of them!

But that doesn’t happen because you’re doing great on your weight loss journey. Then the fat cell reaches a point where it can no longer maintain itself and the water rushes out. 

And that’s when we get this sudden big weight loss that looks like it just came out of nowhere. Makes sense, right? 

This is one of the reasons why it’s not a good idea to trust the scale when you know that you’re doing everything right and yet the numbers are not reflecting your hard work. 

Is there scientific evidence to back up a whoosh?

Not really. It’s not been studied that we know of, and in fact there are many who argue against it.

Most of the “evidence” comes from tons of people in the Fasting and Keto/Low Carb communities who have experienced this phenomena for themselves. 

Proof is in the proverbial pudding, right?

How much weight can I lose with the whoosh?

People usually lose a couple of pounds, but some have lost three or four pounds seemingly overnight. 

It’s not really that you’re experiencing some bonus weight loss that wasn’t coming anyway, it’s just that it comes very suddenly. 

Is there something wrong with me if I don’t experience a whoosh?

No, definitely not. Not everyone will experience a whoosh. Maybe your fat cells are just happy to let go.

But seriously, we’re all different. Our bodies are different. We’re all in different places with our metabolic health. What happens to one, might not happen to another. And that’s perfectly okay. 

How will I know if I have a whoosh coming?

Here are some tell-tale signs that you could be about to experience a whoosh:

  • The scale goes up and/or doesn’t budge for days, even though you’ve been sticking to your fasting consistently
  • You feel or look bloated
  • Urinating more frequently even though you’ve not increased your liquids
  • Some report that their body fat feels different, more “jiggly” or “spongelike” and might feel warmer than usual
  • A sudden increase in hunger or cravings, especially if accompanied by any of the other signs

A word of precaution

If you’re experiencing bloating or sudden weight gain and it continues or gets worse, there could be something else going on. Especially if you have done a long extended fast and you are refeeding. 

Any sudden weight gain that cannot be otherwise explained should not be ignored. As always, check in with your doctor if you are concerned. 

The takeaway 

Whether it’s real or can be backed up scientifically or not, this effect that people are calling “the whoosh” does happen. Lots of people experience it. 

The bottom line is, don’t trust the scale—if it’s up for a few days, and you’re doing everything right, you really could be in for a lovely whoosh of your very own.

Author: Roo Black

Roo Black

Roo is a fasting coach with over 5 years of experience. She leads the admin team of the Official Fasting for Weight Loss Facebook group – one of the largest fasting communities on social media with over 125,000 members. We highly recommend this group for anyone who is looking for fasting advice or coaching.

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