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What Do Ketosis Strips Measure

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How To Know If You Are In Ketosis Without Strips.

To know whether or not you’ve entered ketosis you can measure your blood ketone levels. But how to know if you are in ketosis without strips? Well, we’re already mildly ketogenic after an overnight fast. Once our liver glycogen stores have been depleted we begin to produce ketone bodies at an exponential rate. Despite that, it doesn’t mean that we’ll be utilizing them efficiently. If we’re not adapted, then our brain and muscles won’t be able to put those ketones into use. Nutritional ketosis begins if our blood ketone levels are over 0.5mMol. To indicate that, you can use either urine strips like Ketostix. There are also breath takers. The most optimal range for ketosis is between 0.5 and 3 mMol. Ketoacidosis occurs over 10mMol, which is quite hard to reach. It usually happens with people who are diabetic or after excessive alcohol consumption. But there are a few problems with measuring ketones. Having elevated levels of ketones doesn’t mean you’re in ketosis. These urine strips are expensive and taking several measurements a day is very costly. That’s why there’s another way how to know you’re in ketosis without strips. Like said, elevated ketone levels doe Continue reading >>

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Popular Questions

  1. loislane

    Measuring ketones?

    I have been eating low carb (prob less than 40-50/day ... TC - not net carbs) for about 2 months now. Haven't made a conscious decision to go keto but am curious how close/far I am given this level of eating.
    Seems like the strips are the cheapest way to go - are there particular brands that are better than others, and do results differ significantly the way they do with meters?
    How frequently do you measures (daily, weekly, etc.)

    I've read you need to maintain between 1 and 3 to be in keto - is there any benefit to having some ketones but not at that level? How long does it take you get back once you slip out with a meal or day?
    TIA!

  2. SuperMario

    Originally Posted by loislane
    I have been eating low carb (prob less than 40-50/day ... TC - not net carbs) for about 2 months now. Haven't made a conscious decision to go keto but am curious how close/far I am given this level of eating. That is pretty good. Congrats on being so consistent and on the track!

    Originally Posted by loislane
    Seems like the strips are the cheapest way to go - are there particular brands that are better than others, and do results differ significantly the way they do with meters? Yes, sticks are dirt cheap but ridden with problems. I don't think that there is much significant difference between brands including generic one. Here are few issues:
    - It may get a little tricky to compare colors to get the accurate reading.
    - Even if you have luck with matching colors, the ranges shown are pretty "approximate".
    - If you are in ketosis for a while (seems like you maybe that case), urine keto strips stop showing the full extent of your ketosis, i.e. readings are low despite the fact that your ketones are up. The issue is that urine strips test only for acetoacetate ketones, and not for more important beta hydroxybutyrate.
    - So, keto urine sticks may not be very useful for what you are trying to do at the moment, but certainly better something than nothing.
    I would recommend using Blood Ketone Meter. For example, Xtra Precision which costs around $25 plus $3-$4/ketone strip. You can find good prices on Amazon.

    Originally Posted by loislane
    How frequently do you measures (daily, weekly, etc.) It is enough in the morning (to save $ esp. on blood ketone strips). If you want to experiment and have more fun, you can do it after longer period of not eating food during the day.

    Originally Posted by loislane
    I've read you need to maintain between 1 and 3 to be in keto - is there any benefit to having some ketones but not at that level? How long does it take you get back once you slip out with a meal or day?
    Ideal range is 1.5-3.0 mmol. Light nutritional ketosis is 0.5-1.5 mmol. See below.
    Yes, there is some benefit to being in "light" ketosis as opposed into the "full".
    If you slip, on average, it may take 2-4 days to get back to the track.

  3. CalgaryDiabetic

    The best strips are freestyle blood strips that measure Betahydroxybutyrate. Urine strips measure god only knows what.

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