WHAT IS THE KETO DIET

The keto diet is being adopted by health conscious people all over the world, including celebrities looking for their optimal body composition. It is often referred to as the low carb diet. The basic aim of the diet is to produce ketones in the liver that will be used as energy, as opposed to your body running on glucose derived from carbs. The added benefit in addition to fat loss, is enhanced brain function – since your brain can run on ketones as well! Thank god. In terms of a macro make up – the keto diet should reflect 70% of your calories coming from healthy fat sources, 25% from protein, and 5% from carbs. The protein component is low because your body can synthesize protein into glucose – which in turn will kick you out of ketosis. Ketosis supports muscle retention, so you don’t have to worry about cannibalizing your muscle! The carb intake is calculated on “net carbs” so carbs from fibrous sources are negligible – which makes this diet a bit easier to stomach.

Understanding Ketones

Also known as ketone bodies, ketones are produced as the result of the body breaking down fat for energy, which occurs when carbohydrate levels are kept low. The body usually uses glucose as a source of energy so when carbs are decreased, the glycogen and blood sugar levels are lowered as well. The body will then look for another method to produce energy, so it turns to fat as a fuel source.

The breaking down of fat is also known as beta-oxidation and the result is the formation of ketones. The ketones are then used by the body and brain as fuel. Being in this state is known as ketosis.

Types of Ketones

There are 3 types of ketone bodies:

Acetoacetate (AcAc)
• Result of breaking down the fatty acids
• Will become either BHB or Acetone

Beta-hydroxybutyric (BHB)
• A formation of the AcAc,  ( BHB is not technically a ketone due to its chemical structure, but in the context of the ketogenic diet it’s considered to be one of the three ketones )
• Can be used as an exogenous ketone supplement like KETO//OS to assist the body entering a state of ketosis.

Acetone
• A by-product of AcAc, simplest ketone body and least used.
• Quickly removed from the body if not needed for energy.
• Is expelled from the body through breath or waste

Ketones are an alternative fuel source to glucose. They are produced when the body burns fat for energy. It’s also produced when you have low body fat or there isn’t enough insulin to help your body use sugar for energy.

Ketones are the preferred source of energy for our body. It is used much more efficiently and has been known to produce a wide range of health benefits.

There are two types of ketones that can be produced.

Endogenous ketones = ketones produced from INSIDE your body. This is the natural process by which your body produces ketones by restricting carbohydrates and instead burning fat as fuel.

You can naturally get yourself in a state of ketosis by managing what you eat. See below graph for a visual on what you should be consuming

Exogenous Ketones = external ketone bodies that are consumed as a supplement.

So instead of ketones being produced in the liver (endogenous ketones), ketones that are simply taken as a supplement are considered exogenous ketones.

You’re basically providing your body with an automatic supply of ketones to utilise EVEN IF you are NOT in ketosis prior to ingesting it.

 


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