Theoretically, supplying ketones during this period of compromised glucose metabolism could prevent the energy deficit and reduce the likelihood of long-term brain damage. This could be because ketones can act as an alternative, highly energy efficient substrate7. Additionally, the antioxidant, antiinflammatory33 and anti-apoptosis properties of ketones (i.e ketones prevent the opening of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore, which causes cell death66) could protect against neuronal loss and damage.
I started my journey on April’s Fools this year and it’s been a hell of a six months! Was a mix of lazy and strict Keto - tailored my meals to strictly fish, chicken, eggs, and cauliflowers/broccoli. On the days I could not prepare my meals, I went with rotisserie chicken. One whole chicken and my food intake was done for the day. Yes it’s does not meet my daily requirements but I try my best on such days. I cut beer out completely and rarely ate out. I was a sugar addict and I would drink a couple of iced coffee with sugar and milk before - it was the hardest change to make. I still buy it weekly - one sip and I throw the rest away. Just to sort out my urges haha!
Keep in mind, however, that consuming too much protein at any given meal can decrease your levels of ketosis. To mitigate this effect, you can divide your protein intake into equal amounts throughout your meals. If you workout, then consider consuming more protein after and/or before your workouts because this protein is less likely to spike insulin levels and reduce ketone levels.
But the real problem isn’t going over your carb limit—it’s the protein. A therapeutic keto diet limits your protein intake “If you’re eating a lot of protein, you’re breaking that down into carbs,” Giancoli explains. Your body is in desperation mode on keto, she says, and without a reasonable supply of carbohydrates coming from grains and fruits, you’ll start breaking down the amino acids in proteins to make glucose. Glucose, though it sounds like a scary sugar, is your body’s primary source of fuel. Too much isn’t good for you, but you need some just to allow your cells to function normally.
Con: Results can vary depending on how much fluid you drink. By drinking more water, you dilute the concentration of ketones in the urine and thus a lower level of ketones will be detected on the strips. The strips don’t show a precise ketone level. Finally, and most importantly, as you become increasingly keto-adapted and your body reabsorbs ketones from the urine, urine strips may become unreliable, even if you’re in ketosis.
Pro Tip: Kick-start ketosis with a teaspoon or two of MCT oil or Brain Octane Oil. MCT oils are medium-chain triglyceride fats that bypass the lymphatic system entirely and are uniquely absorbed by the liver in much the same way as carbs. In the liver, they are quickly converted into ketone bodies rather than glucose (carbs), so they’ll expedite the keto process.
Thank you for this article as it cleared up a bunch of stuff for me. I started trying to get into ketosis back in August and lost 20lbs in about 6 weeks. Then it all stopped but had another 20lbs I wanted to loose. I had a hard time staying in ketosis and gave up about a week ago with the holidays approaching. Anyways I glazed over all the technical and science facts as it makes my head spin and might of missed it but my only question is what is the food portion of the diet like? The drinks are the easy part, do you have a diet plan that is good for someone that hits the gym hard 4-5 days a week for and hour and half. 45 min weights and 30-45 min cardio? It’s what I struggle with most the food and what attracted me to a ketogenic diet in the first place is eating 1 or 2 meals a day and being satisfied.
It is possible to lose weight in the state of ketosis, especially in the beginning. This state can reduce your feelings of hunger so you eat less, which is the result touted by low-carbohydrate diets. Ketosis might even make you nauseous, making you not want to eat. A May 2008 study in “The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition” points out, however, that not enough evidence backs up the idea that ketones suppress appetite.
When you want to add some carbs to a workout, you can follow the targeted ketogenic diet. You’re allowed a few extra carbs, but they are only on the days and around the timings of your workouts. The focus is on still getting the exercise without struggling with energy. You wouldn’t need to do this if you get enough fat into your diet and once your body gets into the ketone producing zone.
Other research further supports the benefits of this diet. For example, the ketogenic diet has been linked to reduced symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. (4) It may also help manage Parkinson’s disease, control seizures in children with epilepsy, and, according to the results of a small pilot study, may even improve symptoms of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). (5, 6, 7)
Ben – curious about your thoughts on this. I went into ketosis (using LOTS of coconut oil) but it raised my cholesterol and doc was worried about my lp(a) level (17mg/dL on VAP) even though crp was 0.5, trigs 51 and a1c was 5.2. Advised a low fat diet. Have you seen this before with folks on a lchf/ketosis diet and is there anything to be concerned about? Off to read your coconut oil article. Thank you!
Starting off with it, but with the ~ 50g carbs/day. I’ve been using MyFitnessPal to track, using some advice from ketovale and others to set the targets in the service to help. Only been doing it for ~ 10 days, but down about 8 pounds so far. My biggest problem – need more veggies in my diet and that’s a bit tougher. Working on that with salads and such. I also need to purge out the older salad dressings made w/ vegetable oils and such, but getting there. So – not fully into Keto, but working towards that. I’ve definitely found that I can eat quite a few foods I actually like so that’s not a huge downside. Do I miss pizza/pasta/tortillas? Sometimes. But there are keto pizza crusts (of a sort) and spaghetti squash works really well for me to replace pasta. I have yet to try a “zucchini” wrapped enchilada, but I think that might work as well.
I had the same experience as you with Keto. I lost over 40 lbs. but did not have any energy and I did not have the carefree enjoyment of my life with family, friends, or myself. Was not for me either. I still eat healthy as I am a critical care nurse and I workout 5-6 days a week. There is much less stress without Keto in my life and most definitely much more healthy foods and higher spirits! 🙂
MCT oil powder is a unique form of dietary fat rapidly absorbed by the body and has a wide range of health benefits. Supplementation with MCT powder can help combat fatigue, suppress appetite[*], enhance thermogenesis (aka ‘fat burning’)[*] and help your body adapt to using ketones for fuel. A recent scientific review showed that MCTs can effectively decrease body weight, total body fat, hip circumference, waist circumference, total subcutaneous fat and visceral fat[*]. Check out this articlefor more information on how to supplement with MCTs.