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Can Too Much Protein Stop Ketosis?

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Finding Your Optimal Protein Intake For A Ketogenic Diet

When embarking on a ketogenic diet for health or fat loss, finding the optimum protein intake can be very confusing for many beginners. For smooth adaptation in the transition to a ketogenic metabolism I typically guide people using a caloric spread of around 70-80% fat, 15-25% protein, and 5% carbohydrate from green fibrous vegetables – but this ratio varies for every individual and using percentages is confusing and misleading in many cases. The best way to look at macronutrients is not in percentage ratios, but in grams. The slew of bloggers and gurus spouting so much conflicting information leads many into a mental stalemate about how much protein they should be eating. This article lays out the metrics I most commonly use to quantify how much protein an individual should intake – there is no magic ratio and the needs, preferences, and goals of the individual determine the amount of protein they will likely require on their ketogenic diet which usually lies within a relatively broad range of 1-2.2g/kg (and in some cases even higher *cringe say the protein-phobic) of bodyweight or .5-1g/lb of lean body mass (Lean Body Mass equals Body Weight minus Body Fat). Myth: “Too muc Continue reading >>

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  1. rumSmuggler

    I recently (couple weeks ago) started weights and also taking some protein powder (low carb - 1,8g per serving).
    As suggested I raised my protein intake and I'm somewhere around 1 to 1.2 protein ratio. Last couple days I used ketostix to test my ketones and it was negative. I'm sure I didn't exceed 20g carbs per day because I track all my food.
    Could that higher protein intake kick me out of ketosis?

  2. gupe

    As far as I've been able to discover, there are no absolutely definitive answers to the excess protein => additional glucose => inhibition of ketosis? causal chain question.
    This is a good article: "If You Eat Excess Protein, Does It Turn Into Excess Glucose?" on ketotic.org.
    And here is a recent discussion on "After workout protein needs" on /r/ketogains.
    An important unresolved question is: is gluconeogenesis (the manufacture of new glucose by the liver using proteins and fat) a supply-driven process or a demand-driven process?
    If it is a supply-driven process, then it seems more plausible that excess consumption of protein will lead to higher blood sugar levels.
    But if it's demand-driven, then excess glucose might just be due to the slower removal of glucose from the blood-stream after protein has been eaten, causing a bit of a build-up.
    I think that it might vary a lot from person to person. The best is to measure your own blood ketone concentration before and after eating protein. (The ketostix method is not as reliable, particularly if you've just finished a work-out.)
    Edit: fixed link.

  3. darthluiggi

    It can, but it depends on various factors such as weight, activity level, etc.
    I asked the science behind it to to /u/gogge and he gave a very good explanation in another post.
    Fact is, if you are doing strength training you will need to increase your protein intake, otherwise you will not grow muscle. Also protein comes into play if you are eating at a deficit.
    If you are completely sure that protein is taking you out of ketosis, then drop your intake to 1.0 and see if you get back.
    How much do you weight, what % BF do you have, what kind of excercises are you doing and for how long?
    As a side note: don't rely on ketostsix to see if you are in or out of keto.
    *Edited for grammar.

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