Understanding A High-fat Ketogenic Diet—and Is It Right For You?
While food trends come and go, high-fat diets—lauded for their weight-loss potential and brain-function benefits—have proven to have some staying power. Functional medicine M.D. Sara Gottfried contributes frequently to goop on the topic of weight-loss resistance. She’s spent the past two years rigorously studying the ketogenic diet—high-fat, low-carb, moderate-protein. Named for ketones, which Gottfried explains are “the energy source made by the body when there’s not enough carbohydrates to be burned for energy demand,” the goal of the diet is to get the body to burn fat instead of sugar. Gottfried recommends the keto diet (as it’s commonly called) to help with a range of brain and focus issues—she finds ketones to be “very efficient fuel for the brain”; she also says it works well for some patients (not all) who want to lose weight but have trouble kicking sugar cravings. We talked to her about who the keto diet is right for (and whom, or when, it isn’t); the nutritional ins and outs of mastering it; and which keto-friendly meals are healthy for practically everyone, regardless of what diet we do (or don’t) practice. A Q&A with Sara Gottfried, M.D. Q What is ketosis? A In most circles, ketosis refers to nutritional ketosis, an optimized state in which you burn fat instead of sugar. Nutritional ketosis has been used to treat epilepsy since the 1920’s and its popularity for mental acuity and weight loss has surged recently. More technically, ketosis refers to a metabolic state in which most of your body’s energy comes from ketones in the blood, as opposed to glycolysis, in which energy supply comes from blood glucose. Ketones are the energy source made by the body (in the liver) when there’s not enough carbohydrates to be burned for energ Continue reading >>
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Ketogenic Diet For Dogs
Common Sense Prevention A ' Ketogenic Diet ' for dogs is kind of a trendy phrase these days. There is sound reasoning behind this keto diet idea. I have to tell you honestly though, it makes me laugh that people and vets are only just figuring this out now. Hasn't anyone been paying attention for the last millions of years. Hello? Anybody there? I laugh, not because it's funny, but because it's obvious. Mother Nature has been providing such a diet for wild dogs since the beginning of time. She provides meat/bones/organs in the form of the prey animal. Since you most likely won't be throwing a carcass off the front porch, it would be a good idea to observe the food in the picture above. Look at it closely. What do you see? Meat, bones, organ meat, some green tripe ( the greyish looking stuff ) and a raw egg. You will also notice that there are no vegetables or fruit in the bowl. Dogs are carnivores not omnivores, and so have no dietary need for carbohydrates in the form of plant food, at all. What they do need, is the predigested stomach contents ( green tripe ) of the herbivore prey animal. Herbivores eat plants and grasses. This is the plant food that the deer would eat, for example. The deer's stomach has already broken down and predigested the plants into a form of food that the carnivore ( wolves, coyotes, dogs ) can efficiently digest and use. This is how Mother Nature authentically serves up plant food to carnivorous canids. There are no grains, carrots, sweet potatoes, peas, green beans, pumpkin, apples, banana, blueberries or any other silly thing commonly found in dog food, commercial or raw. A Low Inflamation Keto Diet As Cancer Treatment Nutrition For Dogs The last century has produced a ton of research showing that people, as well as dogs and cats, will bene Continue reading >>
All About The Keto Diet: A Beginners Guide
What you’re getting into: 9000+ words if you read them all. How long it will take? Forever if you get distracted by… OH LOOK, CAT PHOTOS. I’ve been writing fervently so strap in and FOCUS damn you, FOCUS! This is a follow up to my article: When is a calorie not a calorie? In there I say how for a couple years I mostly counted calories to deal with fat loss (or muscle gain) and now I’ve been refining that approach. I’ve been feeling how different macronutrient ratios (ratio of carbs, protein and fat) affect my body both mentally and physically. A diet high in carbohydrates (the standard american diet) seems to make appetite ravenous while a very low carb, high fat diet (ketogenic diet) seems to be very satiating and provides consistently greater mental focus throughout the day. As a result, it’s a more sustainable way of experiencing fat loss and muscle gain, without having to deal with much hunger or the psychological addiction to food. I absolutely love geeking out on this subject matter so get ready for a fat treat. What is the ketogenic (keto) diet? Why is it called ketogenic? How is ketosis achieved? What are the benefits of being in ketosis? Before I continue: The ketogenic diet is NOT a panacea Why do you have to restrict the carbs so sharply? How does the body transition to burning fats for energy? So… What are carbohydrates? Don’t we need them for energy? What is fiber? What’s wrong with carbohydrates? Which foods are high in carb’s and therefore prohibited from the keto diet? Now, at this point, a lot of people will say “I like food too much.” How do I know how many NET carbs a food has? So what do you eat if you don’t eat carbs?” But isn’t fat… bad? Okay, so you eat mostly fat, some protein and very little carbs… But what does Continue reading >>
Ketosis Vs Keto-adapted
As you might know already, I started a Facebook group called Ketogenic Success as a positive, success-oriented community of like-minded folks who are on their own keto journey. Well, the group is growing every day (almost 15k members as of right now), which is awesome. Because the group is growing so fast, new folks will frequently ask the same questions. There’s nothing wrong with that. Asking questions is how we all learn and grow. So I wanted to take some time to address one of the most common questions we see in the group: What’s the difference between being in ketosis and being keto-adapted? It’s easy to see why this is such a confusing topic, and it’s not made easier by the common misconceptions (and just plain errors) that seem to abound. First, let’s address the subject of ketosis. Ketosis is a situation where your body is producing ketones. There are three ketone bodies: acetone, acetoacetate, and beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB). Ketones are produced hepatically (which is a fancy way of saying “by the liver”) as a product of breaking down fatty acids. But there’s a bit of a problem with this simple definition of ketosis. You see, your liver is constantly breaking down fatty acids, and therefore creating ketones, but it would be difficult to say that you’re in ketosis. That’s because the level of ketones isn’t high enough to be considered ketosis. So, having ketones in your body doesn’t necessarily mean you’re in ketosis. Okay. Cool. Cool, cool, cool. But, hey…so…wait a sec. Is there, like, a level of ketones that DOES mean you’re in ketosis? Well…yes. Yes, there is. Dr. Stephen Phinney is the grandmaster of ketogenic research (along with Dr. Jeff Volek), and he’s the person who coined the term “nutritional ketosis.” Before Phi Continue reading >>
The Ketogenic Diet Vs The Atkins Diet: Is Ketosis Better Than Atkins?
It’s not uncommon for the ketogenic diet and the famous Atkin’s Diet of the 1990’s to get lumped into the same conversation as one and the same. But are they actually different, and is one healthier than the other? Which is more impactful over the long term? There are definitely differences between the two diets, and the real comparison might surprise you! But first, let’s step back and look at them individually. The Ketogenic Diet The ketogenic diet was founded all the way back in 1924 by Dr. Russell Wilder at the famous Mayo Clinic. The diet was initially used because it was discovered to be highly effective in treating epilepsy. The principles of the ketogenic diet are based on eating a specific percentage of macronutrients: high fats (60%), adequate protein (35%), and low carbohydrates (5%), to force the body to use what are called “ketone bodies” for energy. In the absence of carbohydrates for an extended period of time, our liver converts fats into fatty acids and ketone bodies, also just simply called “ketones.” Ketones can then be processed into ATP, which is the energy currency of the cells. Now, an elevated level of ketone bodies in the blood leads to a state known as nutritional ketosis. Benefits of the Ketogenic Diet There are several ways the ketogenic diet can help the health and lifestyles of those who follow it. Here are some of the biggest advantages: Blood Sugar Stabilization The ketogenic diet actively helps to lower glucose levels and improve insulin resistance. Without having frequent carbohydrate intake, blood sugar levels can stabilize more rapidly. Trigger Fat Burning Ketogenic diets can also be very effective for fat loss because they ultimately reset your body’s “enzymatic machinery” to burn fat as its primary fuel source Continue reading >>
Metabolism And Ketosis
Dr. Eades, If the body tends to resort to gluconeogenesis for glucose during a short-term carbohydrate deficit, are those who inconsistently reduce carb intake only messing things up by not effecting full blown ketosis? If the body will still prefer glucose as main energy source unless forced otherwise for at least a few days, is it absolutely necessary to completely transform metabolism for minimal muscle loss? Also, if alcohol is broken down into ketones and acetaldehyde, technically couldn’t you continue to drink during your diet or would the resulting gluconeogenesis inhibition from alcohol lead to blood glucose problems on top of the ketotic metabolism? Would your liver ever just be overwhelmed by all that action? I’m still in high school so hypothetical, of course haha… Sorry, lots of questions but I’m always so curious. Thank you so much for taking the time to inform the public. You’re my hero! P.S. Random question…what’s the difference between beta and gamma hydroxybutyric acids? It’s crazy how simple orientation can be the difference between a ketone and date rape drug…biochem is so cool! P.P.S. You should definitely post the details of that inner mitochondrial membrane transport. I’m curious how much energy expenditure we’re talkin there.. Keep doin your thing! Your Fan, Trey No, I don’t think people are messing up if they don’t get into full-blown ketosis. For short term low-carb dieting, the body turns to glycogen. Gluconeogenesis kicks in fairly quickly, though, and uses dietary protein – assuming there is plenty – before turning to muscle tissue for glucose substrate. And you have the Cori cycle kicking in and all sorts of things to spare muscle, so I wouldn’t worry about it. And you can continue to drink while low-carbing. Continue reading >>
Hunters Of Wild Game Can’t Remain In Ketosis
Below, I have another Duck Dodgers post for you, derived from a comment on a previous post. But first, you’ll recall a recent post; wherein, I made mention of Part 1 of a Catalyst episode on the gut microbiome: Australian Catalyst: Gut Reaction; It Signals The End of VLC and Ketogenic Diets For Everyone. Part 2 is now up and running. See what happens to the athlete’s insulin response after just a month on a high fiber diet. In other news, Tom Naughton, who has always been the kind of guy who can change his mind (evident even in how his views changed during his making of Fat Head), has now solidly come over to the The Dark Side. See: Reactions To Arguments About Ketosis. Alright, here’s Duck. ~~~ More nails in the coffin for those who think that it’s possible to stay ketogenic while consuming wild game. From: ￼Energy Source, Protein Metabolism, and Hunter-Gatherer Subsistence Strategies Our concern is with periods of high lean meat (i.e., high protein) consumption, when carbohydrates and animal fat would have been scarce or unavailable to hunters and gatherers as sources of calories… …It should be pointed out, however, that the few minimum values that do exist for wild ungulate meat may nevertheless tend to underestimate somewhat the actual amount of fat available to hunter-gatherers in a carcass, because the values do not include subcutaneous and visceral fat deposits, fat in the bone marrow, and so forth. On the other hand, as will be discussed more fully below, many of these fat reserves may become largely or totally depleted during the winter and spring, bringing the available fat levels more in line with the values for meat alone… ……Second, hunter-gatherers may augment their supplies of storable fat through labor-intensive activities such as rend Continue reading >>
Any Other Animals In A State Of Ketosis
It's a good question - I think that we decided, from the little information available, that carnivorous cats have an upregulated gluconeogenesis pathway that would possibly meet their glucose needs without ketosis. I quite like Paul Jaminet's analysis (in his Perfect Health Diet Book) in which he shows that, at the intestine wall, all mammals digest very similar macro ratios (independent of what they actually put in their mouths): "It turns out that what differs among the animals is the composition of the digestive tract. Animals have evolved digestive tracts and livers to transform diverse food inputs into the uniform set of nutrients that all need. Herbivores have foregut organs such as rumens or hindgut chambers for fermenting carbohydrates, turning them into fats and volatile acids that can be used to manufacture fats. Carnivores have livers capable of turning protein into glucose and fat." "When we look past the digestive tract at what nutrients are actually delivered to the body, all mammals obtain a remarkably similar set of nutrients. By calories, mammalian diets are always composed of a majority, typically 50-75%, of saturated and monounsaturated fats (including the short-chain fatty acids produced by fermentation of fiber); a mix of carbohydrates and protein, usually totaling around 25-40%; and a modest amount of polyunsaturated fat, typically less than 10%. " Continue reading >>
Is The Full Ketogenic Diet Bulletproof?
The word is getting out about ketogenic diets. Eating keto – getting about 75% of calories from fat, 20% from protein, and <5% from carbs – is a powerful way to shed body fat and sharpen your brain. Without access to glucose from carbs, your body turns to fat as its main fuel source. You begin to break fat down into ketones, little molecules that fuel your brain and curb hunger, and keep you lean while they do it. There’s been a lot of research on keto in the last few years. The science is starting to reveal just how powerful ketosis can be: It’s anti-inflammatory. Burning fat for fuel creates far less inflammation than burning sugar does , and ketones themselves turn off inflammatory pathways . It builds a stronger, denser brain. Ketosis causes your brain to create more mitochondria, the powerhouses of your cells . You can literally generate more energy when you strengthen your mitochondria, leaving you with excess willpower and a sharper mental state (shameless plug: for a full guide to building stronger mitochondria, check out Head Strong). It burns body fat. Ketones influence ghrelin and cholecystokinin (CCK), the hormones that control your hunger [4,5,6]. Hunger feels different when you’re in full ketosis – it fades from a pressing need to a background thought. In full keto it’s very easy to fast, and during that fast, your body is burning up your fat stores for energy. You can eat like a king (or queen). Bacon, grass-fed steak and butter, pastured eggs, olive oil, raw dairy (if you tolerate it and in moderation)…you can eat real, satisfying food on a ketogenic diet. Sounds pretty good, but don’t cut out all your carbs just yet. There are a couple possible downsides to keto, too. You may do better with a variation of keto, depending on yo Continue reading >>
Ketosis In An Evolutionary Context
Humans are unique in their remarkable ability to enter ketosis. They’re also situated near the top of the food chain. Coincidence? During starvation, humans rapidly enter ketosis; they do this better than king penguins, and bears don’t do it at all. Starvation ketosis Humans maintain a high level of functionality during starvation. We can still hunt & plan; some would even argue it’s a more finely tuned state, cognitively. And that’s important, because if we became progressively weaker and slower, chances of acquiring food would rapidly decline. Perhaps this is why fasting bears just sleep most of the time: no ketones = no bueno..? Animals with a low brain/carcass weight ratio (ie, small brain) don’t need it. Babies and children have a higher brain/carcass weight ratio, so they develop ketosis more rapidly than adults. Is this a harmful process? No, more likely an evolutionary adaptation which supports the brain. The brain of newborn babies consumes a huge amount of total daily energy, and nearly half comes from ketones. A week or so later, even after the carbohydrate content of breast milk increases, they still don’t get “kicked out of ketosis” (Bourneres et al., 1986). If this were a harmful state, why would Nature have done this? …and all those anecdotes, like babies learn at incredibly rapid rates… coincidence? Maybe they’re myths. Maybe not. Ketosis in the animal kingdom Imagine a hibernating bear: huge adipose tissue but small brain fuel requirement relative to body size and total energy expenditure. No ketosis, because brain accounts for less than 5% of total metabolism. In adult humans, this is around 19-23%, and babies are much higher (eg, Cahill and Veech, 2003 & Hayes et al., 2012). For the rest of this article and more, head over to Pat Continue reading >>
Episode 112 – Amber O’hearn Makes The Case For Carnivore Keto
Amber O’Hearn earned an M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Toronto where she studied computational linguistics. After moving to the U.S., she began experimenting with different forms of diet, in order to retain her health and balance her mental state. When she stumbled upon the idea of a carnivore diet, she was hesitant, but she gave it a shot. And it benefitted her, almost immediately. She has been a carnivore for 8 years now, and she’s thriving. So when I heard her discuss the potential dangers of plants in the human diet, I absolutely wanted to talk to her on the show. And boy was that a good idea. Amber is smart, concise, insightful, thoughtful, and just a very fun person to talk to. And I know you’re going to love listening to her. If you want to find out more about Amber, you can find her insights on her websites and Continue reading >>
Why Ketogenic Diet?
GET THE BEST VERSION OF YOUR DOG AND SAVE MONEY. IF YOU WANT TO KNOW HOW THAT'S POSSIBLE, REGISTER BELOW. WILD INSTINCTS For the past year we’ve been working together with nutrition specialists, scientists and animal experts developing a food formula that dogs might eat in the wild. Being carnivores, dogs have no dietary need for carbohydrates in the form of plant food, at all. What they do need, is the predigested stomach contents (green tripe) of the herbivore prey animal. Keto dog food consists with 35% of FATS, 17% PROTEINS and only 1% of CARBS. TOXINS FREE INGREDIENTS FROM SUSTAINABLE FARMS AND WILD FIELDS IN NORTH OF EUROPE Did you know that the food and water your dog ingests can cause damage to their organs or tissue? That’s why it's important to cleanse or remove these toxins from their bodies regularly. Our mission at Keto dog food is to create a convenient and delicious detoxification product that provides key nutrients and herbs to remove toxins from your dog’s body on a daily basis. That’s why we only use clean and toxin free ingredients that Mother Nature has been providing mammals since the beginning of time. EXERCISE. SOCIALISE. SHARE. We are big believers of holistic living. That’s why toxin free nutrition always has to be complimented with a decent amount of exercise. We encourage you to move as much as you can. A dog is the best companion for an active life. Moreover, when you step outside with your dog, you start socializing and sharing your energy with the environment. Mammals are able to generate and accumulate energy. Remember, cells stop moving only when they die. Mother Nature has been providing such diet for wild dogs since the beginning of time. She provides meat, bones, and organs in the form of the prey animal. Dogs are carnivores Continue reading >>
64 minutes Carl Franklin and Richard Morris talk to Amber O'Hearn about being a carnivore, evolution, sleep, ketogenic metabolism, and a few other tasty nuggets you won't want to miss! Errata Richard forgot to mention when working with Transglutaminase .. wear food prep gloves. Amber sent us a piece of errata. She writes: In our podcast, Carl asks me if babies *have* to be in ketosis to build brains, and I say yes, but that's not true. That is, the primary way that babies build fat and cholesterol in the brain in normal conditions *is* out of ketone bodies, though a small proportion is also made from glucose. I have a few references on this point in the talk transcript on my blog. The critical question is: What happens if there are no ketones to be had and only glucose? The answer seems to be that glucose will suffice. There is a rare inborn error of metabolism called HMG-CoA lyase deficiency, which prevents the body from making ketones. A paper by another brilliant Morris ( Cerebral ketone body metabolism ) reports that people afflicted with this have white matter abnormalities, but no noticeable loss of function, except of course, they can't go without food for long. This suggests that in cases where there are no circulating ketones, the glucose alternative pathway will take over, and get at least an adequate brain constructed. It occurs to me that children with this condition may be perfect candidates for the therapeutic use of ketones esters, provided the condition doesn't somehow prevent their use. "Given the importance of KBs [ketone bodies] as substrates for myelination, one might expect disorders of ketogenesis to be associated with cerebral white-matter abnormalities. Magnetic resonance imaging has, indeed, shown diffuse mildly increased signal in the white mat Continue reading >>
Animal Models Of The Ketogenic Diet: What Have We Learned, What Can We Learn?
Abstract Despite its clinical use as a therapy for refractory epilepsy for more than 75 years, the ketogenic diet (KD) remains a therapy in search of an explanation. The mechanism of action of the KD is unclear and the optimal indications for its clinical use are incompletely defined. Animal models could help to elucidate these questions. Surprisingly, there have been very few animal studies of the KD, and those that have been performed are difficult to compare because of wide discrepancies in experimental methods. Earlier models concentrated on the effect of the KD on acute seizure threshold in normal (i.e. nonepileptic) animals. Recent studies are beginning to examine the longer term effects of the KD and its role in epileptogenesis. Some features of clinical experience have been replicated in animal models, including the role of ketosis, elevation of seizure threshold by both classic ketogenic and medium chain triglyceride diets, better effectiveness at younger ages, and rapid reversal of the seizure protective effect when the diet is discontinued. These parallels raise hope that pertinent clinical questions can be addressed in the more controlled setting of the research laboratory. As in the clinical arena, there has been a recent resurgence of interest in pursuing basic questions related to the ketogenic diet, using techniques of modern neuroscience. Experimental approaches such as brain slice neurophysiology, genetic models, dissection of metabolic pathways, and neurohistological techniques hold much promise in the effort to understand this intriguing alternative to standard anticonvulsants. Continue reading >>
Ketones And Ketosis
According to Owsley “The Bear” Stanley This is not a dedicated nor complete article, this page is an extract from Owsley’s correspondence with others. See this page for more info. A zero carb diet does NOT cause ketosis. The body rapidly adapts within a few weeks and begins consuming the ketones from fat metabolism. A fully keto-adapted body excretes no ketones in the urine. A metabolic by product, ‘ketone bodies’ are actually a special kind of carb, and they substitute for glucose at the structures which use it. They have the added advantage of making you feel good- and well fed. Ketone metabolism is not a ‘rapid response mechanism’. Full keto-adaptation takes several weeks, and until that has been done, a slowly reducing level of ketones will spill into the urine. Once adapted, the ketones are barely present in the urine, having been used by the body (in place of glucose). You will not show ketones in your urine if there are carbs in your diet, the ketones are reprocessed- into bodyfat. Your body ONLY burns FAT for muscular work, and it burns fat all the time, 24/7. Ketones do not appear in the urine until all carbs are stopped and then the ketones will disappear again in a few weeks as your body begins using them as glucose-replacement rather than converting them, as it does all carbohydrates, into bodyfat (from which they came). BOTH a keto-adapted and carb-eating person will show no ketones in the urine. SOME people have a problem with fat metabolism while insulin is present, and glucose being converted into bodyfat, but not everyone, which is why some (a few) people do not become fat or obese no matter what they eat. Those who have a problem find any effort very hard and may fall asleep until the fat storing process is over. Ketones are a valuable nu Continue reading >>