The Performance Benefits Of Being Keto-adapted
You may have heard that glucose is essential for energy. Furthermore, there’s a common message that we need hundreds of grams of carbohydrate per day if we are physically active. However, this isn’t strictly true, and the idea of carbs being essential for energy is incorrect. In fact, some research asserts that being keto-adapted can have substantial performance benefits in sports and for athletes. This article provides a guide to keto-adaptation, the performance benefits ketosis can have, and the limitations. What is Keto-Adaptation? Keto-adaptation simply refers to the period during which we “adapt” to a ketogenic diet. After years—or perhaps even decades—of following a high carbohydrate diet, our body optimizes itself to burn glucose for energy. In short, the primary energy source has been glucose for a long time; we can’t just flip a switch and instantly start burning fat. Take the abundant stores of glucose away, and there’s bound to be an adjustment period. During this adaptation time, a low carbohydrate intake depletes the body’s glycogen stores. Glycogen is a storage form of energy in the muscles and liver, and it is the first place your body will look for fuel. However, once the glycogen stores are empty, the body will begin to produce ketones for energy. The liver will also upregulate the number of fat-burning enzymes to better utilize all the dietary fat coming in. Ketosis and Keto-Adaptation Once the body starts using ketones for fuel, we enter a state known as “ketosis.” On the downside, many people feel kind of “off” or even sick until they can efficiently burn fat. As a result, symptoms such as headaches, nausea, tiredness, and fatigue are not uncommon. Many people refer to these common side effects as “low carb flu” or “ke 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 >>
What Is Fat Adapted?
Being “in ketosis” and being “fat adapted” are two different things. Being in ketosis simply refers to a state in which your body is producing ketones. Most people can get into ketosis fairly quickly but it takes longer to become fat adapted. Fat adapted, also referred to as keto adapted, is the state in which your body is accustomed to using fat as its primary source of fuel. Our bodies are always using a combination of glucose and fat for energy, but in someone who is a “sugar burner” (using carbs as the primary source of energy), the body will turn to glucose first. Once you’re fat adapted, the body no longer looks for energy from glucose because it now knows it can burn fat. When you first start a keto diet, your body will burn through its glycogen stores (glucose stored in the body). This is what causes the rapid weight loss experienced in the beginning stages of a keto diet: each gram of glycogen is stored with 3 to 4 grams of water, so all of this water gets flushed out of the body as the glycogen stores are used up. But don’t be discouraged if people tell you you’re “just” losing water weight! All of this is necessary for your body to become fat adapted and to start experiencing the benefits that come along with it. It typically takes about 2 to 3 weeks to become fully fat adapted. If you’ve just started a ketogenic diet and you feel like it isn’t working, give it some time. You may notice some signs of fat adaptation fairly quickly, but it may take a while to really experience all of the benefits of your new diet. In the beginning, urine ketone strips can tell you if your body is producing ketones, but these are less effective over time, as your body begins to use ketones more efficiently and excretes less of them. Testing your blood f Continue reading >>
Are You Keto-adapted?
Keto-adaptation (also sometimes called "fat-adaptation") is the process the body goes through on a ketogenic diet as it changes from using primarily glucose for energy to using primarily fat for energy. The "keto" part refers to ketones, which are water-soluble molecules that the liver makes when metabolizing fats, particularly when carbohydrate intake is low. Ketones can be used for energy by most tissues in our bodies, including the brain (which cannot use fatty acids directly). Our bodies are always using a mix of fat and glucose for energy, but in a non-keto-adapted state, the body reaches for glucose first, since only low amounts of ketones are normally generated during fat metabolism and these are preferred by other tissues such as the heart. Since the brain cannot use fat, it is dependent on glucose when we are in a non-keto-adapted state. Because of this, when we go on a low-carb diet we can sometimes experience what I call "carb crash" or is sometimes referred to as "the Atkins flu" when our bodies run out of glycogen stores (this is the main way our bodies store glucose). It is when the glycogen stores get low that the body begins the process of keto-adaptation. A Brief History Some of the first rigorous research looking at keto-adaptation was in the 1980s when researcher Dr. Stephen Phinney studied various groups of people on ketogenic diets. One of the studies was of highly trained bicycle racers. At first, the performance of the cyclists declined on the diet, but soon the decline began to reverse, until by the end (4 weeks) they were able to accomplish the same amount of cycling that they had at the beginning, but with noticeably less fatigue. This decline and recovery were dubbed "keto-adaptation". In the years since we have learned that many athletes on k Continue reading >>
What Is Keto-adaptation?
The ketogenic diet, also known as a low-carb diet or the low carb, high fat (LCHF) diet aids in weight loss by changing the way the body uses energy. Reducing net carb intake and increasing consumption of healthy fats induces the body into a state of ketosis, during which ketones are produced from the breakdown of fat in the liver. The ketogenic diet is also beneficial at maintaining blood sugar levels without wild swings, leaving you feeling even and stable with more energy, improved mood and alertness. The goal of the ketogenic diet is keto-adaptation. What is keto-adaptation? When you essentially starve your body of carbohydrates, your body will begin to use fat-based sources (ideally body fat) for energy rather than glucose. This process is called keto-adaptation. The body will burn glucose (carbohydrates are converted to glucose in the body) before it burns fat. The more carbs you eat, the more you delay adaptation to fat burning. For some, the adaptation process can be as short as four weeks, but for others, it can take several months for the body to shift from glucose-based fueling to fat-based fueling. To reach keto-adaptation, you must keep carb intake consistently low. What happens during keto-adaptation? There are two stages of keto-adaptation. In the first few days of a ketogenic diet, your body is still running on glycogen stores. These first few days are the most difficult part of the process because in order to break vicious cycle of glucose burning metabolism, you must avoid eating carbohydrates, no mater how much you crave them. During this stage, fat metabolism is not optimized, and ketone production has not increased significantly. During the first days of a keto-adaptation, you will also experience water loss. Glycogen storage requires water — it t Continue reading >>
Q. What Is Keto-adaptation?
A. Keto-adaptation is a metabolic process where you train your body to easily burn fat as fuel. You gain metabolic flexibility once you have keto-adapted. That means you can then easily burn fat as fuel. Q. How long does it take to keto-adapt? A. Most people keto-adapt in 2-3 months. Q. What do I need to do to keto-adapt? A. Eat a very low carbohydrate diet everyday for 8-12 weeks. I recommend you stick to above ground vegetables, organic animal products, and healthful organic oils such as coconut oil, olive oil and avocados. Q. Can I keto-adapt if I am a vegetarian or vegan? A. Yes, many of my clients have successfully adapted without the need for animal products. Dairy, eggs, and meat are convenient foods to eat on a ketogenic diet, but are not necessary. Vegans and vegetarians will replace animal products with seeds and nuts. Q. Can I use the Ketonix Breath Analyzer to measure my ketones? A. No. The problem with breath and urine analysis for ketones is that they do not detect beta-hydroxy-butyrate (BHB). That is okay for the first few weeks as there is not much BHB initially. But because BHB is the only ketone to cross the blood-brain-barrier, once you get adapted, you will be mainly producing BHB. If you use the breath test, it will look like you no longer make enough ketones. Q. Do I have to eat a ketogenic diet for the rest of my life to maintain the benefits? A. No, after you adapt you will eat a healthful diet for you. You may continue to eat a low-carb diet, just not as low. Alternately you may transition to a low-fat diet, rich in complex carbohydrates. Q. How do I maintain the ability to easily burn fat as fuel if I go back to my old way of eating? A. You will fast for 24-42 hours one day a week to force your body to make and burn ketones. Q. I don’t do wel Continue reading >>
Conclusion: Transitioning From Keto-adaptation To A Fat Burning State
Something additional to consider about the Weight Loss phase because it takes two weeks to go through the majority of ones keto-adaptive transformation to burning fat instead of carbs (sugars) for fuel, those who stick consistently to a low-carb (< 60 gram per day), ketogenic diet will feel consistently well. On the other hand, those who bounce back and forth between carb restriction and carb consumption will struggle more as their bodies repeatedly go through the cycle of fatigue associated with the early stage of keto-adaptation to a low-carb state. One final point on the Maintenance phase maintenance will present a different picture as each individual needs to determine a safe personal level of carbohydrate tolerance; that threshold below which they can sustain their losses and stay lean. For most patients at JumpstartMD, that will still require carbohydrate restriction but typically at a level closer to 100-150 grams per day rather than the 50-60 grams per day they followed in the Weight Loss phase. That said, for those who are more carb sensitive and either gain weight more readily in response to carbohydrates or have health risks (low HDL, high triglycerides, pre-diabetes or diabetes) associated with carbohydrate intake, we would consider greater carbohydrate restriction in the Maintenance phase closer to that 50-60 grams per day. Continue reading >>
Fasting Ketosis Symptoms: Common Side Effects
Ketosis is one of the natural, physiological effects of the body when fasting. When we’re eating a ketogenic diet or have gone on an extended period of time without food, our bodies will enter ketosis. This is because the body no longer has glucose available and begins breaking down the body’s fatty tissues for energy. With the ketogenic diet, we’re inducing ketosis by “starving” the body of carbohydrates so that it must turn to fat burning, which has many benefits. Simply fasting by not eating any food can have the same effect. Many people on the ketogenic diet will incorporate fasting to speed up ketosis and also reap the benefits of fasting on keto. Whether you’re eating a ketogenic diet, simply fasting, or combining the two, your body is entering ketosis. Since the symptoms can be similar, this article covers the common fasting ketosis symptoms, as well as how to deal with them. Fasting Ketosis Symptoms It’s important to note that most of these symptoms are temporary as your body is getting adapted to being in ketosis and can be remedied by the tips we cover below. Ketosis Flu If you’re using fasting as a way to get into (or get back into) ketosis, you might experience what’s commonly known as the “keto flu” as the body adapts to fat burning. The keto flu typically includes symptoms like: Water Flushing As your body burns through its glucose and stored glycogen during a fast, a lot of water is released. Your kidneys will also excrete more sodium as insulin drops. This is why people who start low-carb often experience a big initial loss of water weight and reduced bloating. Fatigue With the loss of excess water, the body also flushes out electrolytes like sodium, potassium, and magnesium. This can cause you to feel lightheaded and fatigued more Continue reading >>
How I Started My Keto Adaptation
“Adopting a ketogenic lifestyle can be an extremely difficult process, but also well worth it for those with autoimmune disease, neurological disorders, seizures, cancer, or even if you are looking to lose weight!” As I mentioned in my previous dietary post, the reasons I even considered a ketogenic lifestyle was solely for medical reasons. Whatever was going on in my body and within my cells was becoming more and more dysfunctional and prevalent as each week passed. I had reduced pain naturally over the last 7-8 months, but knew I could DO better. I knew I could BE better. I knew I could FEEL better. I knew I could reduce the other symptoms and issues being caused by my disease(s). So instead of turning to further treatments and therapies done on my outsides, I opted to go against everything that was comfortable to me and change what was going on INSIDE my body. I decided to attempt a ketogenic adaptation where the switch within my body and brain would go from fueling and running on glucose/carbs to running and burning fat. This process is not easy though friends. It’s not a quick flip of switches that can be done with the snap of your fingers. Most people run into LOTS of bumps in their keto adaptation journey, they have many days of feeling like absolutely crap, never knowing if they are actually even fully keto adapted/efficiently creating & using ketones for energy and to burn fat, popping in and out of ketosis, still have unstable blood glucose levels, continue to have cravings and episodes of binging, feeling like crap (yeah, I’m aware I mentioned that but it needs to be mentioned a few times because that struggle is REAL… more on that in a bit), and in the end usually end up throwing in the towel the first week of attempting the adaption because its TO Continue reading >>
How Long Does It Take To Become Fat Adapted?
How long does it take for your body to get through the fat-adaptation phase, so that you can start running on ketones and reap all its benefits? Here’s an excellent and concise explanation by Dr. David Ludwig – the answer seems to be at least a couple of weeks: Medium: Adapting to Fat on a Low-Carb Diet More A Ketogenic Diet for Beginners Earlier Continue reading >>
Ketogenic Diet Faq: All You Need To Know
Below is an list of the most commonly asked questions about the ketogenic diet. Simply click on the question you're interested in and it will take you right to the answer. If you have any more questions, please let me know by leaving a comment and I'll add it to the list! KetoDiet Basic Facts Foods & Diet Plans Health Concerns Troubleshooting 3 free diet plans to help you kickstart your diet, lose weight and get healthy Recipes, giveaways and exclusive deals delivered directly to your inbox A chance to win the KetoDiet app every week KetoDiet Basic Facts Why is it that conventional diets don't work? Most of us would say we get fat simply because we get lazy and eat more. But what if it's the other way round? What if we just get fat and as a result we eat more and become lazy? For the last decades we have been given wrong advice about nutrition and effects of fatty foods on putting on weight. What if the main problem is that due to our modern diets we cannot satisfy our appetite? A study on this subject concluded with a surprising result: the fatter people get, the more inactive they become, not the other way round. And what if the interests of the authorities offering advice are influenced by economic reasons? To learn more about this, I recommend you watch The Food Revolution on Youtube Ketogenic diets are, in fact, closely related to the Paleolithic diet. Both exclude carbohydrates and aim at eating real food. Today carbohydrates make the majority of our diet and have significant implications for our health including hormone balance. For example, insulin, which is responsible for storing fat in our body, is greatly affected by excessive carbohydrate consumption. Carbohydrates are without doubt the most fattening element in our diets. Based on studies performed over th Continue reading >>
Difference Between Keto And Fat Adaptation
What is the difference between Ketosis and Ketoacidosis, Keto adaption and Fat adaption and something I refer to as metabolic flexibility? So let’s start with the difference between Ketosis and Ketoacidosis. Wikipedia says Ketosis is a metabolic state in which most of the body’s energy supply comes from ketone bodies in the blood, in contrast to a state of glycolysis in which blood glucose provides most of the energy. Dr Peter Attia of Eating Acedemy says – Ketosis is a state, achieved through significant reduction of carbohydrate intake (typically to less than 50 grams per day), at which point the body makes a fundamental change from relying on glycogen as its main source of energy to relying on fat as the primary source of energy. In particular, the brain shifts from being entirely dependent on glucose, to being primarily dependent on beta-hydroxybutyrate – a so-called “ketone body.” Ketone bodies are chemical structures made by the liver (also somewhat in the kidney) out of fatty acids, primarily. Ketosis is simply the mechanism in which the body begins to burn fat for fuel by producing ketones in the liver rather than glucose. This happens when carbohydrate/glucose is removed from the diet and the body begins to produce ketones, this is ketosis. Ketoacidosis is typically a state that occurs in T1 diabetics and is a combination of high ketones and high BG, although it can happen in other situations including alcoholics. The cause is extremely elevated ketone levels of say 15 mmol or higher and high levels of Blood Glucose. That said there is need for concern should your ketones get above say 10 mmol. Basically what happenes, the body fails to manage or regulate ketone production causing uncontrolled ketosis. It happens when the individuals BG levels are e Continue reading >>
10 Signs And Symptoms That You're In Ketosis
The ketogenic diet is a popular, effective way to lose weight and improve health. When followed correctly, this low-carb, high-fat diet will raise blood ketone levels. These provide a new fuel source for your cells, and cause most of the unique health benefits of this diet (1, 2, 3). On a ketogenic diet, your body undergoes many biological adaptions, including a reduction in insulin and increased fat breakdown. When this happens, your liver starts producing large amounts of ketones to supply energy for your brain. However, it can often be hard to know whether you're "in ketosis" or not. Here are 10 common signs and symptoms of ketosis, both positive and negative. People often report bad breath once they reach full ketosis. It's actually a common side effect. Many people on ketogenic diets and similar diets, such as the Atkins diet, report that their breath takes on a fruity smell. This is caused by elevated ketone levels. The specific culprit is acetone, a ketone that exits the body in your urine and breath (4). While this breath may be less than ideal for your social life, it can be a positive sign for your diet. Many ketogenic dieters brush their teeth several times per day, or use sugar-free gum to solve the issue. If you're using gum or other alternatives like sugar-free drinks, check the label for carbs. These may raise your blood sugar levels and reduce ketone levels. The bad breath usually goes away after some time on the diet. It is not a permanent thing. The ketone acetone is partly expelled via your breath, which can cause bad or fruity-smelling breath on a ketogenic diet. Ketogenic diets, along with normal low-carb diets, are highly effective for losing weight (5, 6). As dozens of weight loss studies have shown, you will likely experience both short- and long Continue reading >>
Keto-adaptation For Good!
One of the goals of the keto diet is being “keto-adapted”. Being keto-adapted means that your body is primed for functioning with very little glucose. And this happens in several stages. STAGE 1 – The beginning The beginning stage is the most difficult part of keto-adaptation as you for sure will experience a transitional “flu”. Your body needs different enzymes in breaking down fat than breaking down glucose. Without as many fat-converting enzymes, fat and ketone metabolism simply cannot actually take over. These fat-converting enzymes get built up over time. The best strategy for coping with this is to eat a lot of fat. It sounds crazy at first, but it actually makes perfect sense. The more fat (within reason) you consume at this stage helps your body build up these new enzymes. Also, fat is an important source of essential fatty acids and nutrients. Moreover, ingesting fat with protein helps moderate the insulin response. Even if you eventually wish to get most of your fat from your fat stores, you do not usually need to restrict it in the diet, and especially not now. The second common experience during early Keto is sodium excretion and transient rapid water loss. If care is not taken to replenish sodium and water, both sodium and potassium are sometimes lost too rapidly. This can cause tiredness, weakness, and headaches. Be sure to get enough sodium: about 5 grammes per day, or 2 teaspoons of table salt, will help prevent these symptoms. Adequate potassium may be necessary to preserve lean mass, and magnesium deficiency can lead to muscle cramps, as well as fatigue and dizziness. So this is a good time to look at your mineral profile and ensure that you have sufficient potassium and magnesium intake. Finally, commit to a very low level of carbohydrate in Continue reading >>
What Supplements Should I Take On A Ketogenic Diet?
Adjusting to a keto diet can be tough, even when it’s delicious. Consuming high carb foods for a lifetime then suddenly switching to high fat can cause problems. When you choose to follow a ketogenic diet you need fats and many grams of it every day. Calories have to come from somewhere. People will have to choose everyday staple foods such as green leafy vegetables, high-fat fruit, and meats such as avocados and chicken thighs. The stress of the keto-adaptation can be overwhelming and be challenging for many people. You may feel the need to quit before actually entering ketosis, which is when the real fat-burning and benefits start! Supplements on a ketogenic diet can be useful to aid your transition and for those needing an extra hand. Do You Have To Take Supplements on Keto? Ketogenic diet supplements are by far not essential. If you think about it, all supplements are just meant to “supplement” your diet. 99% of the time you can get all the nutrition you need from your diet but they can help you make it through the keto flu that many people encounter in the initial stages of high-fat dieting. Also assist you with exercise and training by keeping you sharp, healthy and strong on the inside for maximum performance. Here are some essential supplements to help maximize your keto-adaptation and your development in low-carb sustenance! Electrolyte Intake Changing your body’s preferred fuel sources from carbs to fat can be tough. Not only does it take the time to do so, but along the way, you may expect to have a few migraines, nausea, and general fatigue. This is what’s called keto flu. As carbs reduce, so are stored essential electrolytes such as sodium, magnesium, and potassium. For this reason, ketogenic dieters need to think about taking electrolyte suppleme Continue reading >>