Ketosis: Symptoms, Signs & More
Every cell in your body needs energy to survive. Most of the time, you create energy from the sugar (glucose) in your bloodstream. Insulin helps regulate glucose levels in the blood and stimulate the absorption of glucose by the cells in your body. If you don’t have enough glucose or insufficient insulin to get the job done, your body will break down fat instead for energy. This supply of fat is an alternative energy source that keeps you from starvation. When you break down fat, you produce a compound called a ketone body. This process is called ketosis. Insulin is required by your cells in order to use the glucose in your blood, but ketones do not require insulin. The ketones that don’t get used for energy pass through your kidneys and out through your urine. Ketosis is most likely to occur in people who have diabetes, a condition in which the body produces little or no insulin. Ketosis and Ketoacidosis: What You Need To Know Ketosis simply means that your body is producing ketone bodies. You’re burning fat instead of glucose. Ketosis isn’t necessarily harmful to your health. If you don’t have diabetes and you maintain a healthy diet, it’s unlikely to be a problem. While ketosis itself isn’t particularly dangerous, it’s definitely something to keep an eye on, especially if you have diabetes. Ketosis can be a precursor to ketoacidosis, also known as diabetic ketoacidosis. Ketoacidosis is a condition in which you have both high glucose and high ketone levels. Having ketoacidosis results in your blood becoming too acidic. It’s more common for those with type 1 diabetes rather than type 2. Once symptoms of ketoacidosis begin, they can escalate very quickly. Symptoms include: breath that smells fruity or like nail polish or nail polish remover rapid breat Continue reading >>
The Paleo Guide To Ketosis
Ketosis is a word that gets tossed around a lot within the Paleo community – to some, it’s a magical weight-loss formula, to others, it’s a way of life, and to others it’s just asking for adrenal fatigue. But understanding what ketosis really is (not just what it does), and the physical causes and consequences of a fat-fueled metabolism can help you make an informed decision about the best diet for your particular lifestyle, ketogenic or not. Ketosis is essentially a metabolic state in which the body primarily relies on fat for energy. Biologically, the human body is a very adaptable machine that can run on a variety of different fuels, but on a carb-heavy Western diet, the primary source of energy is glucose. If glucose is available, the body will use it first, since it’s the quickest to metabolize. So on the standard American diet, your metabolism will be primarily geared towards burning carbohydrates (glucose) for fuel. In ketosis, it’s just the opposite: the body primarily relies on ketones, rather than glucose. To understand how this works, it’s important to understand that some organs in the body (especially the brain) require a base amount of glucose to keep functioning. If your brain doesn’t get any glucose, you’ll die. But this doesn’t necessarily mean that you need glucose in the diet – your body is perfectly capable of meeting its glucose needs during an extended fast, a period of famine, or a long stretch of very minimal carbohydrate intake. There are two different ways to make this happen. First, you could break down the protein in your muscles and use that as fuel for your brain and liver. This isn’t ideal from an evolutionary standpoint though – when you’re experiencing a period of food shortage, you need to be strong and fast, Continue reading >>
Symptoms Of Ketosis And Diabetic Ketoacidosis Warning Signs
Ketosis or nutritional ketosis is a perfectly healthy metabolic process in which the body burns stored fats for energy when it doesn’t have adequate glucose. Mild ketosis may help you lose weight and even be therapeutic. Unfortunately, there’s another less desirable condition that’s easily confused with ketosis – and that’s diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). This is a high blood sugar-related emergency that accounts for over 100,000 hospital admissions every single year in the United States alone.1 DKA strikes those with diabetes and, if left unchecked, could even put you in a coma. Understanding ketosis and DKA and knowing how they’re different could save your life if you’re diabetic. Mild Ketosis Has Therapeutic Benefits People on diets like the ketogenic diet or Atkins diet cut down carb intake and switch to a diet that’s high in protein and fat instead. This sets your body up for ketosis, which is intended to help with weight loss. Some studies have even found that ketosis can help lower levels of blood glucose, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and triglycerides, besides bringing down body weight and body mass index.2 Mild ketosis has also been explored for its therapeutic applications in diseases associated with free radical damage, hypoxia (oxygen deficiency in tissues), and insulin resistance.3 But There Are Still Some Side Effects Of Ketosis When you are on a low-carb diet or haven’t eaten for a long time, the body undergoes ketosis and you may experience some side effects.4 These are usually temporary and occur initially when your body is adjusting to burning fat and ketones instead of carbs. Some compare these ketosis symptoms to those you’d experience when you are coming down with flu, giving rise to the term “ketosis flu” or just “ket 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 >>
Ketosis Vs. Ketoacidosis (dka): What Is The Difference?
Let’s break it down so that you can understand exactly what ketosis is and how it differs from ketoacidosis. But the states they refer to are nothing alike. In this case, maybe mistakes are understandable. Many people who believe that ketosis is dangerous are mixing it up with another state called "ketoacidosis." The two words do sound very similar. And some people simply make mistakes. Profit motives tend to muddy up the works when it comes to getting clear, factual information about your health. Well, there are a lot of individuals and companies which all have their own goals and motivations. Where do these misperceptions come from? Here’s the thing though … that is all misinformation. You then Googled something like, "low carb dangerous" and found a list of link-bait articles informing you that low-carb is a ketogenic diet, and ketosis is a dangerous metabolic state which can be fatal. And then maybe someone said something to you like, "What are you thinking? Low-carb is a dangerous diet." If you are thinking about starting a low-carb diet, maybe you have mentioned it to some of your family or friends. By the time you finish reading this article, you will understand why low-carb is a safe diet. Continue reading >>
What Is Keto Flu & How To Help!
Symptoms of Keto Flu: Keto flu is the name given to a set of symptoms some people experience when first starting keto. It’s not actually a flu and definitely not contagious, but it can become quite tiring. Keto flu symptoms are very similar to that of your regular flu and can last anywhere from a day to a few weeks! You may experience fatigue headaches cough sniffles irritability nausea Many people who experience these symptoms in the beginning of their ketogenic diet will believe the diet is to blame and carbs are good after all. Ironically, seeing these symptoms is a sign that you were very dependent on carbohydrates! Your body is going through withdrawal from sugar and carby foods. Subscribe for a FREE copy of our 14-Day Keto Meal Plan Withdrawal from Carbs There are studies that have shown sugar has the same effect on our bodies and brains as cocaine and heroine!1 The same areas of the brain are activated when one eats sugar as when one ingests cocaine. In addition, when we eat sugar, our brain sends messages for the release of dopamine, the “feel good” hormone. After some time, the release of dopamine is more or less regulated and less is sent out each time we eat sugar. The absence of large amounts of dopamine triggers our need to want more sugar, to get that same “feel good” feeling back. Coincidentally, drug addiction is exactly that. The brain remembers what made it feel good, even if you don’t- cravings aren’t random. When we stop eating sugar (or carbs altogether) our bodies can go through withdrawal. Many people report irritability and mood swings from the hormone surges, or lack thereof. Our bodies are recalibrating themselves without the influence of heavy factors such as carbs. Readjusting to Fat Headaches and fatigue can come from the sudde Continue reading >>
Ketosis: What Is Ketosis?
Ketosis is a normal metabolic process. When the body does not have enough glucose for energy, it burns stored fats instead; this results in a build-up of acids called ketones within the body. Some people encourage ketosis by following a diet called the ketogenic or low-carb diet. The aim of the diet is to try and burn unwanted fat by forcing the body to rely on fat for energy, rather than carbohydrates. Ketosis is also commonly observed in patients with diabetes, as the process can occur if the body does not have enough insulin or is not using insulin correctly. Problems associated with extreme levels of ketosis are more likely to develop in patients with type 1 diabetes compared with type 2 diabetes patients. Ketosis occurs when the body does not have sufficient access to its primary fuel source, glucose. Ketosis describes a condition where fat stores are broken down to produce energy, which also produces ketones, a type of acid. As ketone levels rise, the acidity of the blood also increases, leading to ketoacidosis, a serious condition that can prove fatal. People with type 1 diabetes are more likely to develop ketoacidosis, for which emergency medical treatment is required to avoid or treat diabetic coma. Some people follow a ketogenic (low-carb) diet to try to lose weight by forcing the body to burn fat stores. What is ketosis? In normal circumstances, the body's cells use glucose as their primary form of energy. Glucose is typically derived from dietary carbohydrates, including: sugar - such as fruits and milk or yogurt starchy foods - such as bread and pasta The body breaks these down into simple sugars. Glucose can either be used to fuel the body or be stored in the liver and muscles as glycogen. If there is not enough glucose available to meet energy demands, th Continue reading >>
7 Signs You Might Be In Ketosis When Doing The Ketogenic Diet
One of the main goals of starting the ketogenic diet is to get your body into a metabolic state known as ketosis. Ketosis occurs when your body has depleted its glycogen stores so blood sugar and insulin levels drop causing the body to look for an alternative fuel source. The fuel source that it begins to use is known as ketones which are produced by enzyme breaking down fat in the liver. 7 Signs You Might Be in Ketosis Testing for ketosis is not the most accurate science. A blood glucose monitor or ketone test strips can show you your ketone levels but these are not always an accurate portrayal of ketosis. Instead, your body does a great job of letting you know when you’re in ketosis and shows you the signs through a number of different ways. Here are things to look out for to see if your body is in ketosis. 1. Weight Loss Weight loss is one of the more obvious signs that your body is entering ketosis. However, the weight loss can be a little deceptive initially due to what is actually being lost. In our Keto Dash program, we find that most of our member lose between 4-6 lbs in the first week of applying the keto diet. This isn’t your body burning fat but finally being able to release the water that was being held by the fat cells due to the drop in insulin. Insulin is one of the main causes of weight gain and when your insulin levels drop, they allow the fat cells to release the water they are holding. When this occurs it then allows the fat cells to enter your bloodstream where they can then enter the liver and be converted by enzymes into ketones. After the initial rapid drop in water weight, you should continue to lose body fat consistently if you are able to stick with the low-carb aspects of the diet and keep your body in a caloric deficit. 2. Loss of Appetit Continue reading >>
What Is The Keto Flu Or Low Carb Flu And What To Do About It?
Keto flu symptoms, mitigation and getting over excess carbohydrates Any major dietary or lifestyle change has the potential to cause discomfort or lets face it, even mess you up for a bit. This is sometimes referred to as a ‘flu’. It’s the most common time during which people will quit their dietary or lifestyle shift as many simply feel they are unable to function without significant carbohydrates and snacking throughout day. Here we’ll discuss the major downside to starting a ketogenic diet or a low carb one, and how to minimize the discomfort often accompanying this adaptation period. Like most people you’ve probably spent 20 – 60 years feeding your body a significant amount of carbohydrates and much of them from poorly chosen overly processed sources. Your cells, organs, central nervous system and brain have all adapted to it through hormonal and metabolic responses normally running in the background. Switching fuel sources, like eating less carbs and more fat, is likely to throw your body and brain for a loop. To be clear, the “keto flu” label is a bit of a misnomer. It’s more akin to carbohydrate withdrawal symptoms resulting from a shifting hormonal states and imbalanced electrolyte adjustments that are along for the ride. Regardless, this buzz term is in the general consciousness now so we might as well keep using it for now. Before diving into the details, keep in mind that the following four books should teach you nearly everything you need to know about low carb and ketogenic diets, including how to handle the keto flu. The rest of the relevant science is dispersed amongst hundreds if not thousands of papers only a search away on PubMed. If you want to ask questions about it or be part of our community please visit Ask BreakNutrition. Sympto Continue reading >>
What Is Ketosis And What Are The Symptoms?
What you should know about ketosis Ketosis is a state of metabolism whereby your body uses fat rather than carbohydrates as its main fuel source. In other words, ketosis occurs when insufficient amounts of glucose are consumed to meet the body’s needs and it turns to burning fat to make up for any deficit. This energy source is known as ketones. What are ketones? Ketone bodies are a by-product of the body burning fat stores for energy rather than glucose, think of them as exhaust fumes from when fuel is burned. To encourage ketones, the amount of insulin in your bloodstream must be low. The lower your insulin, the higher your ketone production. How do I know if ketones are present? You can test for ketones using strips you dip in your urine or you can buy a blood ketone testing meter. These are available from pharmacies or online chemists. If you’re diabetic you should have a ketone testing meter which you can get from your GP or diabetic nurse. Ketosis and Diabetes A ketogenic diet can help you lose excess fat, which is closely linked to type 2 diabetes, prediabetes and metabolic syndrome. So, what’s ketoacidosis? Less common in type 2 diabetes, but dangerous for type 1 diabetics with consistently high blood glucose levels, ketones can develop into a condition called diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). This happens when there is a severe lack of insulin and the body cannot use glucose for energy. The body then starts to break-down fat and body tissue as an alternative energy source. Ketones are the by-product of this process. While a certain level of ketones can be safe in non-diabetics – they can build up to a high level they cause the body to become acidic – hence the name, ‘acidosis’. To make it even easier and give you an informative breakdown of what you ne Continue reading >>
There is a lot of confusion about the term ketosis among medical professionals as well as laypeople. It is important to understand when and why nutritional ketosis occurs, and why it should not be confused with the metabolic disorder we call ketoacidosis. Ketosis is a metabolic state where the liver produces small organic molecules called ketone bodies. Most cells in the body can use ketone bodies as a source of energy. When there is a limited supply of external energy sources, such as during prolonged fasting or carbohydrate restriction, ketone bodies can provide energy for most organs. In this situation, ketosis can be regarded as a reasonable, adaptive physiologic response that is essential for life, enabling us to survive periods of famine. Nutritional ketosis should not be confused with ketoacidosis, a metabolic condition where the blood becomes acidic as a result of the accumulation of ketone bodies. Ketoacidosis can have serious consequences and may need urgent medical treatment. The most common forms are diabetic ketoacidosis and alcoholic ketoacidosis. What Is Ketosis? The human body can be regarded as a biologic machine. Machines need energy to operate. Some use gasoline, others use electricity, and some use other power resources. Glucose is the primary fuel for most cells and organs in the body. To obtain energy, cells must take up glucose from the blood. Once glucose enters the cells, a series of metabolic reactions break it down into carbon dioxide and water, releasing energy in the process. The body has an ability to store excess glucose in the form of glycogen. In this way, energy can be stored for later use. Glycogen consists of long chains of glucose molecules and is primarily found in the liver and skeletal muscle. Liver glycogen stores are used to mai Continue reading >>
Keto Flu Symptoms, Low Carb Headache And Fatigue In Ketosis
I would have it as a guess that more than half of the people I have seen on the Ketogenic Diet have experienced to some degree what is known as Keto Flu or Low Carb Flu. Mostly a feeling of fatigue, slight headaches or nausea overcomes them. The symptoms of Keto Flu / Low Carb Flu usually occurs in the first two weeks of a person beginning a ketogenic diet and entering into ketosis. They can come and go if you’re not getting the right nutrition. Share the Infographic above on your site! The other half follow what is recommended and replenish themselves with essential minerals and electrolytes that are being depleted. These electrolytes are flushed from their bodies as they rid themselves of the water retention and sodium their old high carb diets made them hang on to. What are the symptoms of Keto Flu or Low Carb Flu? The symptoms of Keto Flu as you begin to restrict your carbs and enter into a state of ketosis varies from individual to individual. They differ in duration and severity, dependant on what high fat, low carb foods you include in your ketogenic diet and their mineral content. The Most Common Keto Flu Symptoms Experienced are: What is known as a Low Carb Headache, Diarrhea Fatigue Weakness Nausea Dizziness Low Blood Pressure Brain Fog What Causes Keto Flu / Low Carb Flu, Fatigue, Headache and other Symptoms of Ketosis? Firstly I’d like to bring this away from the technicalities of minerals and nutrients for a second and get people thinking laterally about what they are embarking upon. Essentially when going into a Ketogenic Diet, Ketosis or most Low Carb Diets, we are breaking an addiction. Most western populations are drawn to carbohydrates, or put even more simply sugar! Sugar gives us an instant rush and satisfaction as it flows through our bodies, co Continue reading >>
Ketosis Explained – For Weight Loss, Health Or Performance
Get Started Ketosis is a natural state for the body, when it is almost completely fueled by fat. This is normal during fasting, or when on a strict low-carb diet. Ketosis has many potential benefits, but there are also side effects. In type 1 diabetes and certain other rare situations excessive ketosis can even become dangerous. On this page you can learn all about how to harness the benefits of ketosis, while avoiding any problems. It all starts with understanding what ketosis is. Choose a section, or keep reading below for all of them. Ketosis ExplainedKetosis Explained BenefitsBenefits How to Get Into KetosisHow to Get Into Ketosis Ketosis ExplainedSymptoms & How to Know You’re In Ketosis Side Effects, Fears & Potential DangersSide Effects, Fears & Potential Dangers How to Reach Optimal KetosisHow to Reach Optimal Ketosis ketones Ketosis Explained The “keto” in the word ketosis comes from the fact that it makes the body produce small fuel molecules called “ketones”.1 This is an alternative fuel for the body, used when blood sugar (glucose) is in short supply. Ketones are produced if you eat very few carbs (that are broken down into blood sugar) and only moderate amounts of protein (excess protein can be converted to blood sugar). Ketones are produced in the liver, from fat. They are then consumed as fuel in the body, including by the brain. This is important as the brain is a hungry organ that consumes lots of energy every day,2 and it can’t run on fat directly. It can only run on glucose… or ketones. Maximizing fat burning On a ketogenic diet your entire body switches its fuel supply to run almost entirely on fat. Insulin levels become very low and fat burning increases dramatically. It becomes easy to access your fat stores to burn them off. This is o Continue reading >>
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How To Know If You Are In Ketosis Without Strips.
To know whether or not you’ve entered ketosis you can measure your blood ketone levels. But how to know if you are in ketosis without strips? Well, we’re already mildly ketogenic after an overnight fast. Once our liver glycogen stores have been depleted we begin to produce ketone bodies at an exponential rate. Despite that, it doesn’t mean that we’ll be utilizing them efficiently. If we’re not adapted, then our brain and muscles won’t be able to put those ketones into use. Nutritional ketosis begins if our blood ketone levels are over 0.5mMol. To indicate that, you can use either urine strips like Ketostix. There are also breath takers. The most optimal range for ketosis is between 0.5 and 3 mMol. Ketoacidosis occurs over 10mMol, which is quite hard to reach. It usually happens with people who are diabetic or after excessive alcohol consumption. But there are a few problems with measuring ketones. Having elevated levels of ketones doesn’t mean you’re in ketosis. These urine strips are expensive and taking several measurements a day is very costly. That’s why there’s another way how to know you’re in ketosis without strips. Like said, elevated ketone levels 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 >>
What Is Ketosis? - Definition & Symptoms
What is ketosis? It's actually a normal part of your body's metabolic processes, but sometimes things get out of balance, and too many ketones begin building up. Learn how this happens, what the symptoms are, and how it's treated. What is Ketosis? Ketosis is actually a normal part of your body's metabolic processes. Your body derives energy from breaking down the food you eat, and a lot of your initial energy comes from carbohydrates. However, when the body no longer has any carbohydrate stores to draw upon, it will begin burning fat for energy. This results in a buildup of ketones. So if, for example, you are on an extremely low-carb diet, your body will switch to make energy through the process of ketosis. Ketosis can also be triggered on purpose to help burn fat levels. However, high levels of ketones in the blood can sometimes hurt your body, because it leads to dehydration and alters the chemical composition of your blood. Symptoms of Ketosis You can test your body's ketosis levels by buying strips that test your urine for four types of ketones that can be present. High ketone levels can be dangerous because they actually alter your blood, making it more acidic (known as ketoacidosis). If the blood becomes too acidic, it is no longer compatible with the body, and it can cause coma or even death. Inducing ketoacidosis is possible when there is an over-consumption of alcohol, extreme fasting or starvation, or over-active thyroid functioning. If a diet is well-balanced, low carbohydrate consumption should not induce ketosis; however, avoiding carbohydrates all together can lead to problems. Proper hydration is important all the time, though it is particularly important during dieting of any kind. Diabetics are at risk of extreme ketosis when their insulin levels are t Continue reading >>