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Are Ketosis Strips Accurate

Metabolism And Ketosis

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 >>

How To Measure Ketones And Optimize Ketogenic Diets

How To Measure Ketones And Optimize Ketogenic Diets

The problem with diets is that we think that one diet should be good for everyone. But research and N=1 experiments show that’s not the case. Learn about measuring ketones and ketosis to understand how your low carb or high fat diet is really affecting you. If there is one area of our bodies that is debated to extremes, with literally hundreds of differing strong opinions on it, it’s nutrition. For many, beliefs about nutrition and diet are tribal. We put ourselves in different camps and we war agains the other camps. Whether it be paleo, low fat, low carb, Atkins, high fat, low protein, vegan, raw vegan and so on. It’s exactly this sort of area where I see data as essential. Without data we have no hope of cutting through the maze of opinions to get to what really works. Part of the problem with nutrition and diets is that we tend to think that one diet should be good for everyone. But increasingly, research and N=1 experiments, are showing that that isn’t the case. And this is exactly why you should pay attention to today’s show. Today, we’re looking at what has relatively recently become the fastest growing nutrition or diet trend. The high fat diet. Also known in different guises as the ketogenic diet, or the low carb diet. And specifically how this can affect our different individual biochemistries, how we can measure “Ketosis” and other biomarkers to understand how our specific biology is reacting to it… and allowing us to troubleshoot and course correct when it isn’t getting the desired results we’re looking for from it. Today’s guest is Jimmy Moore. In 2004, Jimmy, at 32 years, weighed 410 pounds. Since then he has transformed his own biology, shedding all that additional weight with low carb and ketogenic diets. He has also interviewed n Continue reading >>

How To Detect Ketosis

How To Detect Ketosis

How can you tell if your low-carbing efforts have been effective enough to induce ketosis? Learn how to check your ketones! The state of ketosis The state of ketosis means that the body has switched from depending on carbohydrates for energy to burning fats for fuel. This means not only dietary fats (olive oil, guacamole, deep-fried pig ears), but also all the jiggly bits around your waist — clearly a desirable state for anyone looking to shed extra weight. When the body metabolizes fat, it generates molecules called ketones (also known as ketone bodies). As you restrict carbohydrate intake and amp up the dietary fat, more fat is metabolized and a greater quantity of ketones are created. Most of the cells in your body — including those in your brain — are able to use ketones for energy, although many people experience a few days’ adjustment period, often called the low carb flu. One of the varieties of ketones generated — acetone — cannot be used by the body and is excreted as waste, mostly in the urine and the breath. Conveniently, this makes it very simple to measure whether or not you are in ketosis. Upon entering ketosis, some people report a distinct change in the smell of their breath as a result of the extra released acetone. It could be “fruity” — it’s been likened to overripe apples — or even “metallic.” If you notice this happening during your first few days of changing your diet, it could be a good sign you’re in ketosis. The unusual smell isn’t anything dangerous, but it could be annoying. Drinking plenty of water should help, or get yourself some sugar-free gum. Most people report “keto-breath” diminishing after the first few weeks. Detecting ketones in urine The more accurate way — and the one we recommend — to check f Continue reading >>

3 Best Ways To Measure Ketones For Your Ketogenic Diet (review & Buyers Guide)

3 Best Ways To Measure Ketones For Your Ketogenic Diet (review & Buyers Guide)

How do you get accurate readings of ketones? Which methods actually work? These are common questions I going to help you with in this article. Anyone interested in using the latest nutritional research to improve their health has likely heard of a ketogenic diet. Ketogenic diets are a simple way to get your metabolism to prioritize the consumption of fatty acids, also known as ketones, when at rest or exercising. While there is a wide body of research that confirms the benefits of this type of nutritional plan, for the average user at home – one big question remains. How can you measure ketone levels to ensure your body is reaching a perfect state of ketosis? Without an accurate method of ketosis measurement, you will never achieve an optimized LCHF or ketogenic diet. However, it has not always been easy to measure your level of ketosis at home. At least this concern is now a thing of the past, because there are many ways to measure ketone levels easily and accurately in the comfort of your own home. Find out the very best method to test your level of nutritional ketosis that strikes the perfect balance of ease, price and quality. Before getting too deep into the different methods for measuring ketosis, it is important to first look at exactly why measuring them is so important and to clarify some of the more complex scientific terms. Ketone Testing Terminology If you have decided to try a ketogenic diet to achieve nutritional ketosis, then finding an accurate way to measure your ketone levels is important. You need to be able to maintain yourself in the optimal zone where fat is used as energy rather than glucose. Too little ketone and you will not see any positive effects. But higher levels give no real benefit and could indicate a serious problem with your diet. Li Continue reading >>

The Best Ketone Meter For Monitoring Ketosis

The Best Ketone Meter For Monitoring Ketosis

If you're on the ketogenic diet, measuring your ketone levels is crucial to make sure your body is actually in ketosis - otherwise, you're basically just leaving things up to chance. We spent roughly five days researching ketosis meters in order to find the most accurate monitor for measuring ketone levels, and after reviewing 20+ options, we've found the Precision Xtra to be the best ketone meter available. Using a light prick of the finger, it measures ketone levels using your blood, collecting nearly-exact numbers to help you manage your diet better than any other testing method. You will also need a set of ketone test strips to get started, which can be a little expensive, but we consider this a small price to pay when you're investing in your health. If you’re following the ketogenic diet, you probably already know how it works – low carb, high fat. By eliminating carbohydrates (our body’s main energy source), you’re manipulating your body to move into a state of ketosis, where it burns fat for energy instead of carbs. Maintaining ketosis is relatively easy if you stick to the core principles of the diet (60-70% fat, 20-30% protein, 5-10% carbs), but at the end of the day, you still don’t know for sure if your body has successfully made the transition. Instead, regularly using a ketone meter (also called a ketosis meter) is the preferred way to ensure your blood-ketone level consistently stays within the optimal range for ketosis. There are three main types of ketone meters: blood ketone meters, urine strips, and breath analyzers. Urine strips and breath analyzers work exactly as their names imply – one measures ketone levels using your urine, the other measures them using your breath. Blood ketone meters, on the other hand, work like a blood-glucose me Continue reading >>

How To Know If You Are In Ketosis Without Strips.

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 doesn’t necessarily mean ketosis. It might even be the opposite. If we’re not putting ketones into use, then we’re probably urinating it out. That’s why urine strips are not ideal. What we want to know as well is our blood sugar levels. Glucose and ketones are contradicting fuel sources. If one is elevated, then the other has to be decreased. If we have high blood sugar levels, then we won’t be able to use fat for fuel. We definitely won’t be in ketosis. Quantifying is great because it gives us an accurate interpretation of our condition. However, we shouldn’t get stuck with the dat Continue reading >>

Measuring Ketosis: What Are Keto Sticks And Keto Strips?

Measuring Ketosis: What Are Keto Sticks And Keto Strips?

Ketosis is a metabolic state where the liver breaks down fat to produce ketones. Ketones, on a ketogenic diet, are the primary fuel source for the body. If you’re new to the ketogenic diet and you still have questions, consider reading our Comprehensive Beginner’s Guide to Keto > There are three main ways to measure the ketones in your body, all of which have their advantages and disadvantages. The most common ways to measure are: Blood Ketone Meter. Very accurate but the strips are extremely expensive. Breath Ketone Meters. More accurate than the urine strips, but can sometimes vary in accuracy. Cheaper than blood strips in the long-run. Urine Stricks. This will answer the question “Am I in ketosis?” but will not provide an accurate measure of blood ketones. Scroll down to read a more in-depth analysis of each, and what we recommend for you. Measuring Ketones with Urine Sticks Urine sticks will always be the cheapest and easiest way to measure ketosis. For beginners, this should cover everything you need – there is no point in getting more complex blood strips so early on when you are still trying to understand the nuances of a ketogenic diet. Ultimately, keto sticks are very easy to use – you hold the sticks in your urine stream for a few seconds, and within 10-15 seconds you should notice a color change in the strip (if you are in ketosis). The color of the stick typically is measured in red: light pink being low in ketone production and dark purple being high in ketone production. While keto sticks can be ideal for a general answer to the question “Am I in ketosis?”, they aren’t precise with their accuracy. They measure the acetoacetate in your urine, which is an unused ketone by the body. As you get deeper into ketosis and your body adapts, your b Continue reading >>

Why You Need To Stop Worrying About The Color Of Your Ketostix

Why You Need To Stop Worrying About The Color Of Your Ketostix

Yeah, I know you like to use them, but there are so many misconceptions about what they are telling you, that I need to intervene and make sure you get it. But before I go there, let me urge you to just buy The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living, and read pages 164-165. Phinney and Volek have the best description of this that has probably ever been written, and you should really just read it from them. If I could copy these pages verbatim and paste it here, I would. Seriously, it’s only a few bucks and it’s quite literally the book you want to own if you’re interested in low carb ketogenic diets. OK, while you wait for your book to arrive, let’s dig in… What ketostix measure First off, we need to understand what ketostix actually measure, and more importantly, what they don’t. Generally speaking, ketostix measure excess ketones in your urine. They are considered excess, because they are removed from your serum and shunted to your urine by your kidneys. Their caloric content is thereby wasted. Of the three types of ketones (acetate, acetoacetate, and beta-hydroxybutyrate) produced by your body, ketostix only measure acetoacetate. This is extremely important to understand, because it turns out that your body produces different quantities of these different types of ketones depending on how long you’ve been in ketosis. If you’ve been in ketosis for a while, you’re going to see a reduction in the “intensity” of what you register on your ketostix for two reasons: A change in the relative volume of the ketones produced/present in your body A reduction in the volume of ketones in your urine as your kidneys reduce the amount they secrete Both of these are covered below. Changes in the types of ketones you produce When you first start your ketogenic Continue reading >>

How To Test Your Blood With A Home Ketone Meter

How To Test Your Blood With A Home Ketone Meter

testing is used by people with diabetes and by people on a ketogenic diet. You can test your urine or your blood for ketones. But because urine testing is not as accurate, the American Diabetes Association recommends blood ketone testing with a ketone meter as the preferable method. If you have diabetes, you should discuss home blood ketone testing with your doctor to learn whether it is recommended in your case and when you should perform the testing. Ketone testing is particularly important during periods of illness. Blood Ketone Meters for Testing at Home You will need a blood ketone meter and a kit that include the lancet pen and ketone test strips. These meters also will read blood glucose test strips, and both will download their results to your computer. Other brands and models may be available, including: Precision Xtra: This meter from Abbott Diabetes Care can store up to 450 measurements and will display your blood glucose averages over different time periods. You need to enter a code to switch from glucose testing to ketone testing. Users seem happier with the Precision brand, and researchers find it to be the more accurate. The strips require 1.5 microliters of blood. It also features a backlit display. Nova Max Plus: This meter from Nova Biomedical is often provided free with the purchase of two boxes of test strips. You don't have to enter a code to switch it from blood glucose to ketone testing; it does that automatically when you insert a ketone test strip. If you are using it primarily for blood glucose, it will remind you to test for ketones if your blood sugar level is 250 mg/dL or higher. The test strips for the Nova Max are less expensive but also flimsier and give more error messages, requiring retesting. The strips require less blood than the Prec Continue reading >>

Whether Your Ketostix Show Light Pink, Purple Or Beige, It Has No Bearing On Your Low-carb Diet

Whether Your Ketostix Show Light Pink, Purple Or Beige, It Has No Bearing On Your Low-carb Diet

One of the most interesting tools we have at our disposal when we start livin’ la vida low-carb to let us know whether we are doing it right or not is a testing strip that measures ketone levels called Ketostix (there are other brand names for ketone sticks, but this one from Bayer is the most common). Basically, here’s how it works: you can check your urine on this testing strip to see how many ketone bodies you are excreting out of your body. Ketones are present when you are in ketosis which is instigated when you keep your carbohydrates at a ketogenic level (usually under 50g carbs daily). I recently asked a group of low-carb experts the following question–“Is Ketosis Necessary On A Low-Carb Diet?” That seems to be a “well duh” kind of question which is why we use things like Ketostix to see whether we are in ketosis or not. But where people seem to get most confused is with the color of the testing strip. If it’s light pink, then I must be doing something wrong. My Ketostix need to be dark purple if I am experiencing “deep” ketosis, right? I get these kind of questions every single week and they miss the point of the testing strips. In Episode 47 of “Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb On YouTube,” Christine and I seek to better explain the purpose of Ketostix by telling you what they are for, what the various colors actually mean, why showing no ketones on these strips may not be a bad thing, and how you can virtually guarantee your body is in ketosis. I’m astonished by how many people are still so concerned about the results of their Ketostix, but hopefully this video will clear up some of the miscommunication. Find out all you need to know about Ketostix in today’s video: Noted biochemistry professor Dr. Richard Feinman from SUNY Downstate in Br Continue reading >>

How To Use Ketone Strips To Stay In Ketosis

How To Use Ketone Strips To Stay In Ketosis

If you are new to the world of low carb, you may have come across people talking about ketone strips or “ketostix” to see if they are in ketosis. These are small strips to test your urine to see if you have ketones in it. It is a roundabout way to see if you are in ketosis. Here is a guide to your most common questions about how to use ketone strips and if they are right for you! Ketone Strips FAQ Testing Laboratory Microbiology - Air Quality - Mold Asbestos - Environmental - Lead emsl.com What Are Ketone Strips Used For? Ketostix are used to help track when someone is in ketosis. Sometimes people use them to see how many carbs they can consume and stay in ketosis. For most people this range is from 40-55 net carbs a day. For other, it can be as low as 20 carbs per day. Also, it can be used to help determine what foods may interfering with ketosis. For some people, dairy products, artificial sweeteners, or high fiber foods (giving a high carb content, but low net carb result) will take them out of ketosis. Using these strips can help one figure out what the problem is if they are not staying in ketosis or losing weight. How To Use Ketone Strips: You take a strip and dip it into your urine. Generally it is better to dip it into a cup with urine in it, rather than passing through your urine stream. This is because if your stream is too strong, you could potentially wash all the reagent off of the strip and get a false negative result. Either way, dip it, and remove immediately. Usually the bottle will tell you how long to wait, but as a general rule, you will see your results in seconds. After a minute, the results are no longer valid. How Accurate Are They? They are very accurate at showing if you are passing ketones in your urine, so the rate of a FALSE positive is Continue reading >>

The Best Way To Monitor Ketone Levels

The Best Way To Monitor Ketone Levels

Awareness and appreciation of the “low-carb high-fat” ketogenic diet has been steadily growing over the last few years. Along with that, you hear the words ketosis and ketones used more commonly. That’s excellent, but many people don’t really know what it all actually means. ..What are ketones? And what does your body do with them? What are the proper levels of ketones you should have to be in ketosis? With so many people talking about the diet/lifestyle, it’s understandable that there is more misinformation as a result. So, let’s clear it all up in this post. First we’ll review the details of ketones – what they are, how they’re formed, etc. – and then we’ll talk about how to monitor them. Let’s dive in! Contents: First Off, What Exactly Are Ketones? Ketones, or ketone bodies, are byproducts created by the body in the process of breaking down (metabolizing) fat for energy, when carbohydrate levels in the body are low. It works like this… The body prefers to use glucose (from carbs) as its source of fuel. But when there isn’t a sufficient level of glucose, and glycogen levels are depleted, blood sugar and insulin levels are reduced, as the body looks for an alternative source of fuel: fat. This process can occur during fasting, starvation, extended periods of exercise, or in the case we’re referring to in this post and on this site: while adhering to a low-carb, high-fat, ketogenic diet. …When the body switches to metabolizing fats for energy – a process called beta-oxidation – instead of glucose, ketones are created as a fuel source for the body and the brain. It is this process which is referred to as ketosis or ketogenesis…Or, as some people like to say, switching from being a “sugar burner” to a “fat burner”. If you’re Continue reading >>

Testing For Ketones

Testing For Ketones

Testing for Ketones 3 Types of Ketones How to go about testing for Ketones? There are 3 types of ketone bodies. Acetone, Acetoacetate and Beta-Hydroxybutryate (BHB, though technically not really a ketone body) The body (the liver) converts long and medium chain fatty acids into BHB and Acetoacetate. BHB and Acetoacetate live in reversible equilibrium (they can transform back and forth). Acetoacetate can also be turned into acetone. After converted to acetone, it can not be converted back. Acetone is typically excreted through the urine or breath. If your body has been in ketosis for a while, you will see a reduction in acetoacetate. Muscles begin to use acetoacetate and turn it into Beta-Hydroxybutryate for fuel, so less is present in urine as you get more keto-adapted. This is the flaw of the urine test. It only tests for acetoacetate so it will go down as your body gets more efficient at using ketones for fuel. 3 Methods for Testing Ketones Urine strips only test acetoacetate. Ketonix only tests acetone in breath. Blood Strips test for Beta-Hydroxybutryate (BHB), what your body uses for fuel. 1. Urine Test Strips Pros: Cheap. Cons: Very inaccurate in testing level of ketosis. Our bodies excrete excess ketones in two ways. Through the urine or through the breath. When you are testing for ketones in urine you will typically see higher levels in early stages of a ketogenic diet because your body isn’t using ketones for fuel yet. After you are fully Keto-Adapted (2-4 weeks or so), you will see less and less ketones in your urine because your body in now using more ketones for fuel instead of excreting them through the urine or breath. The urine test strip is also very susceptible to changes based on your state of hydration. The more hydrated you are (and we should all b Continue reading >>

Why Test For Ketones: Is Blood Or Urine More Accurate?

Why Test For Ketones: Is Blood Or Urine More Accurate?

There are certain situations when ketone testing is needed to reduce the risk of critical complications of diabetes. Options are using plasma blood with a meter to check for ketones or using urine testing kits. We will review which is more beneficial. Let’s first look at the basics of ketones and when they can cause a possible life threatening situation. What are ketones? Ketones are formed when fat is used as an energy source instead of carbohydrates. There are dietary ketones which are formed on a low- or no-carbohydrate diet with a high fat/protein intake; when blood sugars are controlled these ketones are not dangerous. When blood sugars are uncontrolled the carbohydrate source may be available, but with no (Type 1 Diabetes) or little (Type 2 Diabetes) insulin present, the body relies on fat breakdown for energy source; ketones are a toxic by product of the fat breakdown. Ketones circulate in the system as acids and change the PH of the blood, resulting in DKA or Diabetic Keto-acidosis. This is a serious medical situation and must be treated. What is DKA and what are the symptoms? Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) is a condition that can occur when people have diabetes type 1 and are suffering from illness, excessive stress, or lack of insulin delivery. It can be because of a displaced insulin pump or using expired insulin. Although less common, it can occur in those who have diabetes type 2 when they are ill, have an infection, are severely stressed or prone to ketone production. The ketones accumulate in the blood, eventually go to the kidneys and are released from the body through urine. Ketone production can also occur in pregnant women with diabetes or women who develop gestational diabetes when pregnant. Ketones can form in patients who are switched from exogenous Continue reading >>

Why I Stopped Testing My Ketones On A Ketogenic Diet

Why I Stopped Testing My Ketones On A Ketogenic Diet

On measuring Ketones. Like many people, when I first started a Ketogenic diet in early 2014 I bought the Ketostix and just couldn’t wait to see the color change. And change it did! It was neat, and it provided motivation for me to continue. Eventually, I got a blood meter, a breath meter and spent lots of time (and money) testing ketones. Between a Ketonix Breath Ketone Analyzer, as well as dozens of blood ketone test strips, I’ve probably spent well over $500 testing ketones. The main thing I learned from my extensive ketone testing regimen is that the results vary widely and there’s little application to my goals. Eventually, I stopped testing and here are several reasons why: 1. Burning fatty acids from fat is the main benefit of a ketogenic diet On a ketogenic diet, some of the brain’s energetic demand is fueled by ketones, but the heart, muscles, etc. are fueled by fatty acids. Most of the energy we utilize both at rest and at sub-maximal exertion on a ketogenic diet is fatty acid, not ketones. Quoting Dr. Ron Rosedale on chasing ketones at the Keto Summit: “I don’t want people to have the mindset that it’s the ketones that are the benefit of the diet. They are a beneficial side effect, but the main benefit is that you are burning fatty acids from fat. The more fatty acids from fat you are burning, the less glucose you need to burn. And that’s really where you are getting the benefit…So ketones are great but the term ketogenic diet indicating that the diet is so good because you are generating all these ketones is a misinterpretation of the benefit. The main benefit is that you are burning fatty acids, and as a side effect of burning fatty acids you are producing ketones that your body can burn too!” 2. Urine Ketones aka “peetones” are ridic Continue reading >>

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