What Is A Ketogenic Diet?
These low-carb, high-fat diets put your body into a metabolic state of ketosis, which can help you lose weight. You've heard of low-carbohydrate, high-protein diets like the Atkins diet and Paleo diet. These and other so-called ketogenic diets are gaining in popularity due to their effectiveness, but do you know what, exactly, they do in your body to trigger weight loss? In a standard carb-loaded American diet, the body burns glucose from carbohydrates as an energy source in a process called glycosis. But when you limit your carbs and increase your fat intake, your body moves into a metabolic state of “ketosis,” meaning that it’s burning fat stored in your body instead of glucose, according to Web MD. Ketosis also drastically reduces blood sugar and insulin resistance. As Dr. Eric Westman, director of the Lifestyle Medicine Clinic at Duke University, told Time Magazine, "You determine what your body burns for fuel based on what you feed it.” A medical marvel? A ketogenic diet has been used for almost 100 years to treat pediatric epilepsy, Scientific American reports, because a ketogenic diet mimics fasting, which has long been known to have a therapeutic effect on seizures. Similar to a state of ketosis, the body also burns fat for energy during fasts. Usually, a pediatric ketogenic diet starts with 24 hours of fasting in a hospital setting, where doctors can monitor frequency of seizures, medication, and help educate the parents on the ins and outs of the diet. Ketogenic diets may very well be able to delay symptoms of neurodegenerative diseases and even reverse them completely. Dr. Terry Wahls, whose lecture "Minding your Mitochondria" went viral a few years ago, summarily reversed the progression of her secondary progressive multiple sclerosis, following a Pa Continue reading >>
7-day Ketogenic Meal Plan
This amazing article was written by Nicole, a holistic nutritionist with a strong belief that it is possible for everyone to discover how good their body is designed to feel. Nicole works in partnership with her clients to achieve a lifestyle that is both balanced, fulfilling and nourishing. Go check out her fantastic blog with healthy recipes, or follow her on Facebook! If you’ve been active in the realm of natural health and wellness for more than 5-minutes, you’ve probably heard of the ketogenic diet. This low-carb, high-fat diet is one where grass-fed butter and pasture-raised bacon have a potential in being health foods. Yes, that’s right. Now – I’ve always been on #TeamButter. But maybe you’re thinking this is too good to be true… A Brief History of The Ketogenic Diet While keto may appear like it’s the latest trend for weight loss, mental focus, blood sugar management, increased energy, improved athletic performance and longevity – this low-carb, high-fat (LCHF) way of eating has actually been practiced and studied since the 1920’s , and the benefits also exceed our own aesthetic pleasure. Initially studied for its effects on reducing the frequency of epileptic seizures , this style of eating has also been shown beneficial for other neurodegenerative disorders such as multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. In addition, for those with traumatic brain injury – when a bump, blow or jolt to the head causes damage to the brain . How Ketosis Works Ketosis is a natural state that the body activates to help us survive when food intake is low. The end goal of a proper keto diet is to encourage the body to enter this metabolic state – where circulating ketones can now be used as your main energy source. However, when following Continue reading >>
Do Ketogenic Diets Have A Place In Human Evolution?
Part 1: How to think about ketogenic diets within human evolutionary history In the past decade ketogenic diets in humans have started to attract the attention of a few forward thinking researchers as well as a small number of online health enthusiasts. In any diet there are three main elements called macronutrients – fat, protein and carbohydrate. On a ketogenic diet most calories come from fat (65-90%), a moderate amount from protein (<10-25%) and a small amount from carbohydrate (0-15%). A ketogenic diet is often mistaken for a high-protein diet. This is not accurate. A ketogenic diet means eating food that produces ketones, a kind of molecule in the blood that provides energy, like glucose does. Producing a high enough level of ketones is called being in ketosis and it is a metabolic state in which the body relies much less on glucose. The who’s who of low-carbohydrate ketogenic research, headed by Accuros et al. in 2008 (1), defined ketogenic diets as containing <10% of calories from carbohydrates. There are two reasons that I prefer to give a range of 0-15%. First, scientists have not fed large populations in a controlled manner to see how much of each macronutrient is needed to shift more than half of them into nutritional ketosis (we lack empirical data on this). This is complicated by that fact that different people get into nutritional ketosis more or less easily because of various factors, like their level of insulin resistance for example. Second, scientists have not yet defined what the nutritional ketosis threshold is exactly, despite their being good approximations. Before exploring the appropriateness of ketogenic diets for humans, I’d like to justify why I approach questions of human health and nutrition the way I do by introducing 2 concepts; evo Continue reading >>
The Ultimate Guide To Ketones And Ketosis
Ketones and Ketosis are one of the hottest health trends right now and are rising in popularity - so what’s all the fuss about? Many people still don’t know what ketones are or why ketosis would be a desirable lifestyle, but as more and more people experience the benefits a ketogenic lifestyle can offer, the clearer it becomes. We’re here to help you sift through the facts and fallacies so you can understand what ketones and ketosis are and whether or not a ketogenic diet is right for you. We’ll start with the basics of what it means to be ketogenic or live in ketosis. Then you’ll get a break down of the best diet tips and recipes. BONUS: Access the FREE Ketosis Cheat sheet What are Ketones? Humans naturally get energy from glucose which is the result of broken down carbohydrates. Ketones are an alternative fuel source to glucose made by breaking down fats for energy as opposed to glucose. People who suffer from epilepsy, Parkinson’s, Alzheimers or even those who just have an aging brain tend to have dysfunctional glucose uptake in the brain. In fact, more and more research is providing evidence that these are diseases of lifestyle - brought on by insulin resistance and too many carbohydrates consumed over a lifetime. When the liver is in ketosis and is able to construct ketones from fatty acids for energy for the brain to function, our bodies are able to function for longer periods of time without needing to constantly be fed. Cognitive Benefits of Ketosis The benefits of following a ketogenic diet and using ketones for brain function aren’t restricted to those with an aging, epileptic, Parkinson’s or Alzheimer's brain. Even healthy people can drastically improve their brain function and overall health with ketones. The trend of high fat, low-carb diets Continue reading >>
When Not To Be On A Ketogenic Diet
When Not To Be on a Ketogenic Diet A ketogenic diet is a very low carbohydrate, moderate protein and high fat based nutrition plan. A ketogenic diet trains the individual’s metabolism to run off of fatty acids or ketone bodies. This is called fat adapted or keto adapted, when the body has adapted to run off of fatty acids/ketones at rest. This nutrition plan has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce inflammation. It also improves cellular healing and mitochondrial biogenesis which supports stronger and healthier cells. All of this leads to reduced risk of chronic disease as well as improved muscle development and fat metabolism (1, 2). Where Ketosis Can Be Extremely Beneficial There are certain cases, where I typically recommend a ketogenic diet as the research appears to support that ketosis significantly improves the functionality of these individuals. Overweight or Obese Neurodegenerative Conditions such as dementia, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Most Cancers but especially those of the brain, nervous system and blood (leukemia) Chronic Pain Seizure Disorders Non-Elite athletes or individuals looking for higher mental & physical performance The final one is the area that I and many others who have pursued a state of ketosis fall into. At this point in my life, I have no chronic diseases, I feel great 99% of the time, but I am always looking to improve my productivity and performance. I have found being in mild-ketosis to be one of the best ways to improve my energy, mental acuity, creativity, physical strength and overall life performance. There is no one diet that works perfectly for everyone. Ketosis has the potential to benefit everyone, but under unique circumstances it would not be warranted. Here are a list of special cases where long-term st Continue reading >>
Tpns 58-61: Ketosis Is Natural. Natural Is Good.
Primitive Nutrition 58: Ketosis Is Natural. Natural Is Good. Part I So far in my examination of low-carb diets I've shown you that they are nutritionally deficient, metabolically damaging, and unlikely to produce weight loss, if only because fats are so calorically dense. For the low-carbers, the solution to this last problem is ketosis. For them, this special metabolic state is the ultimate goal of their diets. They imagine it will effortlessly melt away all the fat they've accumulated from their prior unhealthy eating behavior. Low carbers' zeal for ketosis has lead some to make a questionable claim which I'd like to ponder in this section. Michael Eades presents it here in his blog explaining ketosis. Of course, like many other primitive fad diet promoters, he wants you to start from the assumption that the activity pictured to the left somehow represents man's true nature and the way he has historically obtained food. I don't see any women in that photo, which should give you a clue that this isn't the whole story. According to The Economist, among the hunter gatherers who provide the Paleo model, "men usually bring fewer calories than women, and have a tiresome tendency to prefer catching big and infrequent prey so they can show off." Eades is tapping into the same old macho vanity that has worked so well in marketing Paleo. If you'd like to see what a group spear hunt really looks like in live action, watch this video. Somehow the artist who created Dr Eades picture forgot to include all the blood. Having read a bit about how intelligent and social elephants are, I find this unappealing to say the least. If you watch it, see if you can imagine Michael Eades participating in such a hunt. But back to ketosis, despite his acknowledgement that ketogenic diets create a Continue reading >>
What Is Ketosis, And Is It Healthy?
Ketosis is a natural metabolic state. It involves the body producing ketone bodies out of fat, and using them for energy instead of carbs. You can get into ketosis by following a very low-carb, high-fat ketogenic diet (1). In addition to fast weight loss, ketosis may have several health benefits, such as reduced seizures in epileptic children (2). Ketosis is quite complex, but this article explains what it is and how it can benefit you. Ketosis is a metabolic state in which fat provides most of the fuel for the body. It occurs when there is limited access to glucose (blood sugar), which is the preferred fuel source for many cells in the body. Ketosis is most often associated with ketogenic and very low-carb diets. It also happens during pregnancy, infancy, fasting and starvation (3, 4, 5, 6). To go into ketosis, people generally need to eat fewer than 50 grams of carbs per day and sometimes as little as 20 grams per day. This requires removing certain food items from your diet, such as grains, candy and sugary soft drinks. You also have to cut back on legumes, potatoes and fruit. When eating a very low-carb diet, levels of the hormone insulin go down and fatty acids are released from body fat stores in large amounts. Many of these fatty acids are transferred to the liver, where they are oxidized and turned into ketones (or ketone bodies). These molecules can provide energy for the body. Unlike fatty acids, ketones can cross the blood-brain barrier and provide energy for the brain in the absence of glucose. Ketosis is a metabolic state where ketones become the main sources of energy for the body and brain. This happens when carb intake and insulin levels are very low. It's a common misunderstanding that the brain doesn't function without dietary carbs. It's true that glu Continue reading >>
Are Carbohydrates Holding Us Back From Our True Potential? Exploring The Possibilities Of A Ketogenic Diet.
It is hard to avoid carbohydrates in the world we live in today. Since the industrial age 100-200 years ago, factories have been able to produce large quantities of sugar and white flour to feed the masses. Really though, foods high in carbohydrates (such as pasta, bread, rice, and potatoes) have only been available to us since the rise of agriculture, approximately 5-10,000 years ago. Prior to that, humans assumed a hunter-gatherer lifestyle where our diets consisted primarily of animal products and low starch vegetables; this was basically whatever we could find in nature without growing ourselves. According to Stephen D Phinney, simply due to circumstance, it is likely that the hunter-gatherer era of humans followed a high fat, moderate-high protein, and very low carbohydrate diet . This has become known as a ketogenic diet, named after ketosis, a natural metabolic state the body undergoes when carbohydrates are nearly eliminated from one’s diet. A typical ketogenic diet might be proportioned into 70% fat, 25% protein, and 5% carbohydrates. While in ketosis, the body utilizes fatty acids as an alternative source of energy due to the glucose deficit. To accomplish this, acetyl CoA, which is normally oxidized into H2O and CO2 as part of the citric acid cycle, is converted by the liver into acetoacetate and 3-hydroxybutyrate, also known as ketone bodies. These ketone bodies are now free to flow where needed and be used as fuel for metabolic processes. It is worthwhile to note that ketone bodies are very effective respiratory fuels; whereas 100 g of glucose generates 8.7 kg of ATP, 100 g of 3-hydroxybutyrate can yield 10.5 kg of ATP, and 100 g of acetoacetate 9.4 kg of ATP. Most areas of the body, such as the brain, will use ketones whenever provided to them (in fac Continue reading >>
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My Thoughts On Low Carb And Paleo Episode 3: A New Hope
Really clear, concise and informative post! If people still insist on not “getting” it, know that you have been as pedagogical as is humanly possible and that people, at the end of the day, will have to be responsible for their own reactions. Some reflections based on my own “tinkering”: My first foray into paleo was in 2005. I jumped on board to lose a few vanity lbs (I’ve never been in horrible shape) and for overall health. Unlike many paleo adherents, I’m neither a reformed vegan nor someone who’s had a lot of health issues. My introduction to paleo came as a result of being the co-translator for the Swedish version of Loren Cordain’s The Paleo Diet. The whole thing just made sense to me, and coming from a science background I found the whole premise intriguing. However, when I first discovered paleo, it had yet (at least as far as I was aware) to start overlapping with the whole LC philosophy. As a result, I focused entirely on nutrient density and eliminating the bad stuff. So, I ended up eating starchy tubers more or less freely (no potatoes though) and quite a bit of fruit on top of that. I lost 25 lbs over a four-month period with little effort (I was tiny by the end of it). When I actually bothered to add up the calories I was eating it was never over 1600-1800 kcal (I’m 5’7” and naturally muscular). I almost started worrying that I wasn’t eating enough. The things was, though, that I was hardly ever hungry. The increased satiety, weight loss and stable blood sugar came despite not specifically aiming to reduce carbohydrates. However, I think it’s important to note is that even a so-called high carb paleo diet will usually be lower in carbs than the standard Western diet. Just eliminating refined sugars and grains might be enough to c Continue reading >>
The Ketogenic Diet: A Beginner’s Guide To Living Well
In today’s world, there is a diet or meal plan to fit your needs or your desired results. We’ve seen everything from the Atkins program to a gluten-free lifestyle and everything in between. Then came the Whole30 that took the world by storm with its strict Paleo nature, showing people how to fall in love with whole foods and what their bodies would do if fed well. How can one choose which diet plan or food lifestyle is the one for them? It’s simple: education. If you’ve been through the runaround with the fad diets, maybe it’s time for a complete lifestyle overhaul with a ketogenic diet. This is a low-carb, high-fat diet that is similar to the Paleo diet and Atkins. One of the misconceptions of keto living is that the classic ketogenic diet isn’t based on physiology. A ketogenic diet is based on the science of ketosis, the natural state of the body when it’s running off fuel from body fat rather than being in a state of glycolysis, where the body runs off blood glucose levels for most of its energy. This is how the body begins burning fat. Where the Paleo and Atkins diets are both low-carb diets like the ketogenic diet, ketosis is strictly based on the scientific response of your body to a low-carbohydrate diet. It offers a healthier long-term solution to dieting that works as an alternative, modified Atkins diet, with a healthier body response. Benefits of the Ketogenic Diet The advantages of a low-carb ketogenic diet, also known as keto or LCHF (low-carb, high fat), range far and wide. It’s primarily known to reduce the risk of diabetes by normalizing blood sugar levels and insulin levels, heart diseases, and stroke. It was created in the 1920s to aid those with epilepsy. Today, it’s used by many in the health and fitness industry to get back on trac Continue reading >>
Ketosis – Advantaged Or Misunderstood State? (part I)
As The Eating Academy approaches its first birthday in about a month, I figured it was as good a time as any to put together some thoughts on a subject I get asked about with great frequency. (For those wondering when I’ll get to Part X of The Straight Dope on Cholesterol, the answer is, “hopefully before the end of the year.”) A few months ago I was planning a post along the lines of “the 10 things you need to know about ketosis,” but I’m now thinking that might be putting the proverbial cart before the horse. So, let’s start with a more fundamental set of questions. In part I of this post I will see to it (assuming you read it) that you’ll know more about ketosis than just about anyone, including your doctor or the majority of “experts” out there writing about this topic. Before we begin, a disclaimer in order: If you want to actually understand this topic, you must invest the time and mental energy to do so. You really have to get into the details. Obviously, I love the details and probably read 5 or 6 scientific papers every week on this topic (and others). I don’t expect the casual reader to want to do this, and I view it as my role to synthesize this information and present it to you. But this is not a bumper-sticker issue. I know it’s trendy to make blanket statements – ketosis is “unnatural,” for example, or ketosis is “superior” – but such statements mean nothing if you don’t understand the biochemistry and evolution of our species. So, let’s agree to let the unsubstantiated statements and bumper stickers reside in the world of political debates and opinion-based discussions. For this reason, I’ve deliberately broken this post down and only included this content (i.e., background) for Part I. What is ketosis? Ketosis is Continue reading >>
This article is about a dietary therapy for epilepsy. For information on ketogenic diets as a lifestyle choice or for weight loss, see Low-carbohydrate diet and No-carbohydrate diet. The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, adequate-protein, low-carbohydrate diet that in medicine is used primarily to treat difficult-to-control (refractory) epilepsy in children. The diet forces the body to burn fats rather than carbohydrates. Normally, the carbohydrates contained in food are converted into glucose, which is then transported around the body and is particularly important in fueling brain-function. However, if there is very little carbohydrate in the diet, the liver converts fat into fatty acids and ketone bodies. The ketone bodies pass into the brain and replace glucose as an energy source. An elevated level of ketone bodies in the blood, a state known as ketosis, leads to a reduction in the frequency of epileptic seizures. Almost half of children, and young people, with epilepsy who have tried some form of this diet saw the number of seizures drop by at least half, and the effect persists even after discontinuing the diet. There is some evidence that adults with epilepsy may benefit from the diet, and that a less strict regimen, such as a modified Atkins diet, is similarly effective. The most common adverse effect is constipation, affecting about 30% of patients—this was due to fluid restriction, which was once a feature of the diet, but this led to increased risk of kidney stones, and is no longer considered beneficial. The original therapeutic diet for paediatric epilepsy provides just enough protein for body growth and repair, and sufficient calories[Note 1] to maintain the correct weight for age and height. The classic therapeutic ketogenic diet was develope Continue reading >>
Ketosis – Nature’s Great Gift For Life-long Health January 23, 2016 Detox, Energy, Healing Foods, Heath And Beauty, Inflammation, The Body, Weight Loss0 Comments
It’s important for you to learn about the power of ketones. They bring vitality, mental clarity, and top sports performance. Becoming keto-adapted may offer protection from early aging as well as treatments for many illnesses, from cancer and Alzheimers to heart conditions, insulin resistance and othere. There is even evidence from animal studies that ketones may lengthen lives. The high carbohydrate way of eating which more than 90% of people follow locks the body into a dependance on carbohydrates and sugars for energy and in the process can seriously undermine health. It is possible in a few weeks to retrain your body so you are living at a much higher level of strength, energy, and mental clarity by simply changing your diet. AMAZING KETONES What is ketosis? And why might you want it? Ketones are natural by-products of your body’s ability to burn fats for energy. Tiny ketone bodies derived from fatty acids provide fuel for all your body’s cells and tissues—including brain function. Although as yet little recognized by mainstream medicine, a low level of ketosis is likely to be the optimal state of metabolism for human beings. This is because our genome has evolved to express itself most effectively when we eat a very low carbohydrate diet just as our ancestors did going back many thousands of years. When a body produces ketones efficiently, these minute ketone bodies accumulate in the bloodstream producing a perfectly safe state known as nutritional ketosis. Mainstream medicine remains ignorant about the profound benefits which can come to a human body as it becomes keto-adapted because most doctors confuse nutritional ketosis with a potentially dangerous complication that occurs to some Type 1 Diabetics known as ketoacidosis. KETONES OR SUGAR There are two Continue reading >>
A Neurologist On Ketone Drinks & What The Ketogenic Diet Can (really) Do For Your Brain
Ilene Ruhoy, M.D., Ph.D. Deciding what to eat for optimal health can be confusing. There are so many different dietary approaches, and each is touted as the most beneficial to our health and waistlines, yet the actual nutrition advice often differs greatly or conflicts. It can be difficult to keep up with all the trends and fads, and sometimes it's hard to know who to trust. I'm often asked for nutritional guidance in my clinic, and recently I've been hearing a lot of questions about the ketogenic diet from my patients. Here's exactly what I tell them. Despite its current surge in popularity, the ketogenic diet has been around for a long time and is commonly used for refractory seizure disorders (epilepsy). In fact, evidence of its efficacy for epilepsy dates back as far as 1921. There are many different types of the ketogenic diet,including the classic version, the medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) diet, the modified Atkins diet, and the low-glycemic diet. Because fasting is a rapid method of achieving ketosis, intermittent fasting diets can also be ketogenic depending on how it's accomplished. But what is ketosis? Here are five simple scientific facts that I often give to my patients: 1. In ketosis, human metabolism switches its main energy source from carbohydrates to fatty acids and ketones once the storage form of glucose (glucagon) is used up. 2. In ketosis, the fat cells break down triglycerides into fatty acids, and those fatty acids are used as the energy source by the liver and muscles. 3. The liver cells take the fatty acids and oxidize them into ketones, which are used as the energy source by the brain, muscles, and other tissues. 4. Ketones are in the specific forms acetoacetate, acetone, and beta-hydroxybutyrate. Therefore, checking beta-hydroxybutyrate seru Continue reading >>
Ketogenic Supplements Reviews Fast & Safe Keto Products For Weight Loss
Ketogenic supplements are taking the world by storm and the right product can steady the balance of fats that your body needs to get your body into that state of ketosis. Those of you who have tried this form of weight loss before are probably more than aware of how hard it can be to first get your body to adapt to such a dramatic change in your daily intake of food, let alone without the help of a single exogenous ketone supplement. And the situation isn’t made any easier if you use a poor quality ketosis supplement because the wrong product may actually do you more harm than good. Bad quality ketosis supplements, have proven to lead to side-effects such as constipation and increased levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in men and women may also experience amenorrhea or other disruptions to the menstrual cycle. This is why it is really important to know what combination of compounds you are consuming, particularly while you are on this very strict diet, because the wrong balance can really mess with you in the long term. DO YOUR RESEARCH. I can't stress this point enough. This lifestyle change isn't for the faint hearted and you can't just wing it. It's a calculated exercise, which can lead to so many benefits. Check out the rest of this article so you can get up to speed, on how everything works and what powder or pill are actually out there and when you're finished go deeper and read our articles on the science behind this fascinating and our reviews on the best mix of exogenous ketone supplements out there in the market. Because without the knowledge and the right information, you'll never reach your goals and you may as well just keep eating that mash potato for dinner and club sandwich for lunch. Believe me, I stumbled onto this trend before it even blew up a Continue reading >>
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