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Why Is Ketosis Not Working

Why You’re Not In Ketosis

Why You’re Not In Ketosis

As the COO of Diet Doctor and low-carb enthusiast for years, you would have thought I’d nailed ketosis years ago. I haven’t, and here’s why. Am I still in ketosis? To get into ketosis, the most important thing is to eat maximum 20 grams of digestible carbs per day. When I went low carb in 2012, I followed that advice to the letter – replacing all high-carb foods like potatoes, bread, rice, pasta, legumes, fruit, juice, soda, and candy, with eggs, dairy, meat, vegetables, fats and berries – counting every carb I consumed. I felt great – effortless weight loss, no stomach issues, tons of energy and inspiration. But over time, something changed – I no longer felt as great as I used to. Until recently, I had no idea why. The journey to find out started with a simple question: Am I still in ketosis? The moment of truth At a Diet Doctor dinner a while ago, our CTO, Johan, gently challenged me. “Bjarte, you’re eating quite a lot of protein. Have you measured your ketones lately?”. “No”, I said, feeling slightly defensive, “I’ve never measured my ketones. Should I?”. It was wake-up time. Johan and I grabbed two blood-ketone meters from a dusty drawer, pricked a finger each, and touched the ketone strips. His results came out first – 3.0 mmol/L – optimal ketosis. He looked happy. It was my turn. The ketone meter made a weird beeping sound and the screen started blinking – 0.0 mmol/L – no ketosis whatsoever. What?! I’d been eating strict low carb for years, how could I not be in ketosis? I felt slightly embarrassed, but mainly relieved. Was this the reason I no longer felt great? Experiment 1: Eating less than 60 grams of protein a day Several of my colleagues agreed with Johan – I was eating too much protein. To test that hypothesis, I s Continue reading >>

How Ketosis Helps You Lose Weight Through Suppressed Appetite

How Ketosis Helps You Lose Weight Through Suppressed Appetite

One of the reasons The Bulletproof Diet with Bulletproof Coffee works so well for people looking to lose weight is that Bulletproof Intermittent Fasting helps your body to more easily enter a state called cyclical ketosis, which is great for a whole bunch of reasons. Ketosis is a cornerstone of becoming Bulletproof; listen to these recent Bulletproof Radio episodes with ketosis experts Jimmy Moore and Dominic D’Agostino to get the scoop on how and why it works. It’s what happens when your body switches to burning fat instead of sugar for energy, and it only happens when you eat almost no carbohydrates, or when you hack it using certain kinds of oils. Many people first stumble upon the idea of ketosis while looking for a weight loss strategy. That can be a major part of it for so many people out there who have tried just about every other diet out there but haven’t seen the results they’d hoped for. But when people experience the mental clarity and focus that ketosis brings, the game changes! This post walks you through one of the most important yet underrated mechanisms that makes ketosis so effective for people who have tried everything else to lose weight and failed to keep it off: appetite suppression. Ketosis works for weight loss in the short term, but that’s not why it’s so amazing. Short term weight loss is easy (I’ve lost at least 200 pounds of short term weight…because it always roared back on with a vengeance so I could lose it again!) When you look at keeping your weight off forever, ketosis provides a level of appetite suppression that is actually liberating. Ketosis helps you literally stop thinking about food all the time. Why Calorie Counting Is So Ineffective One of the reasons old-fashioned, calorie-restricted diets tend to fail is becau Continue reading >>

Does The Ketogenic Diet Work For Women?

Does The Ketogenic Diet Work For Women?

There are three things you should never ask a woman: How old are you? Are you pregnant? Do you eat carbs? If you’re a woman, what emotions come up for you when you read that last question? For some women, carbs are associated with their sense of morals, feeling proud if they restrict carbs and guilty if they indulge. Others can’t imagine giving up their daily bread, morning oats, fresh fruit, quinoa salad, or baked sweet potato. The Carbohydrate Conundrum Ever since the Atkins’ Diet first launched in 1972 and re-vamped in 1992, the “low-carb” kick has been part of headline news stories and put low-fat, whole-grain, granola-heads to the test. In recent years, the ketogenic diet of the 1920s has become popular, claiming humans were designed to consume fat as their primary fuel, shunning the mere thought of a sushi roll with rice or pre-workout banana. A typical ketogenic prescription includes a daily plate comprised of 60-70% fat, 20-30% protein, and 10-20% carbohydrate. While the low-carb diet has its critics, research shows convincing claims that ketogenic diets are beneficial, not only for weight loss, but also: With all these benefits, “going ketogenic” seems to be the answer to the diet our society has been looking for: health, brain power, and lean body mass. So what’s the downside? The goal of this article is not to argue whether ketogenic diets are good or bad, but rather is a full-scope look at the benefits and downsides to a ketogenic diet—namely for women. So, if you’re a woman, read on. Low-Carb for Life? A low-carb ketogenic approach can work for fat loss. If you cut out excess sugar and starch, which retain water and stores as fat when overconsumed, your body will naturally make positive body composition adjustments, and as an added bonus Continue reading >>

Breaking A Weight Loss Plateau

Breaking A Weight Loss Plateau

I know all about how annoying a low carb diet weight loss plateau can be. In 2008, I began to change my eating habits in order to address some serious health problems. I also wanted to lose the excess weight I had accumulated over the years while eating a poor diet full of processed junk food. It took several years and I still struggle with my weight, but then I'm a work in progress. The Most Common Causes of a Weight Loss Plateau Here is my opinion, born of my individual experience, on the most common causes of a weight loss plateau. If you are following a ketogenic diet, and not losing weight, or the weight loss is inconsistent (going down one week and up the next), here are some of the most common causes: Eating more carbohydrate than you think (fruit, nuts, and yogurt are the particular culprits here). I call this carb creep. Eating more calories than your body can handle without storing (this is usually the result of a very high fat intake - for me, too much dairy). You want to be burning your stored fat, not excess fat from your diet. Eating large amounts of low carb foods that elevate insulin. Dairy protein (hard cheeses, yogurt and whey protein in particular), sugar alcohols, and other artificial sweeteners are culprits here. Eating lots of coconut, coconut oil or MCT oil. Coconut oil has a lot of medium chain triglycerides in it. This type of fat can't be stored, so your body has to burn it first. Again, the goal is to burn your stored fat, not fat from your diet. Not exercising in a way that increases insulin sensitivity to the muscles. (The problem is that for people with a broken metabolism, long, slow exercise doesn't work well - it has to be high intensity exercise, which uses all the glycogen stored in the muscles, and makes them more insulin sensitive. T Continue reading >>

Adverse Reactions To Ketogenic Diets: Caution Advised

Adverse Reactions To Ketogenic Diets: Caution Advised

As the ketogenic diet gains popularity, it’s important to have a balanced discussion regarding the merits of this diet. Let me emphasize right out of the gate that this is not a diet without merits (excuse the double negative); in fact, it has significant therapeutic potential for some clinical pathologies. However, it is also a diet with inherent risk, as evidenced by the extensive list of adverse reactions reported in the scientific literature—and this has not yet been a thorough enough part of the public discussion on ketogenic diets. The AIP Lecture Series is a 6-week video-based, self-directed online course that will teach you the scientific foundation for the diet and lifestyle tenets of the Autoimmune Protocol. This is the first of a series of articles discussing various facets of a ketogenic diet with an inclination toward balancing the discussion of the pros and cons of this high-fat, low-carb, low/moderate-protein diet. My interest in this topic stems from concerns I have over its general applicability and safety, simultaneous with its growing popularity. I feel a moral and social obligation to share what I understand of these diets, from my perspective as a medical researcher. The dangers of a ketogenic diet was, in fact, the topic of my keynote presentation at Paleo F(x) this year (links to video will be provided once available). This series of articles will share the extensive research that I did in preparation for this presentation, including all of the topics covered during my talk as well as several topics that I didn’t have time to discuss (also see the free PDF Literature Review at the bottom of this post). For every anecdotal story of someone who has regained their health with a ketogenic diet, there’s a counterpoint story of someone who derai Continue reading >>

Can You Be In Ketosis And Not Lose Weight?

Can You Be In Ketosis And Not Lose Weight?

Are you in ketosis, but not losing weight? This phenomenon is far more common than you think. What you might not know is that insulin is not necessary to store body fat. That's a myth. The body has a back up system to store excess energy even when carbs are very low. However, the situation isn't hopeless. It just requires you to embrace your individuality. If you're stuck, and your weight won't budge, here's what you can do to get the scale moving again. In 1972, Dr. Atkins introduced the world to the concept of carbohydrate sensitivity. He talked about the damage that excessive carbohydrates can do to your metabolism, suggested that overweight and obesity was caused from a metabolic defect, and played up the necessity of being in the state of ketosis to achieve effective weight loss. Since then, many low-carb dieters have mistakenly thought that the number of ketones that have backed up in the bloodstream is what makes the diet work. It doesn't. This strong misconception -- that ketones are vital to the fat loss process -- has caused a lot of confusion. While being in ketosis is essential to initially trigger the metabolic changes needed to switch from predominantly burning glucose to predominantly burning fats for fuel, you can certainly be in ketosis but not lose weight. And here's why: [Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. If you decide to buy something by using one of those links, I might receive a small financial compensation, at no cost to you.] What to Do if Low Carb Doesn't Work If your metabolism is average, you lost a decent amount of weight during the first two or three weeks, but then suddenly, weight loss slowed down. For some people, weight loss completely stopped. For others, you might have gained some of that initial water loss back. The Continue reading >>

3 Reasons You Might Want To Ditch That Ketogenic Eating Plan

3 Reasons You Might Want To Ditch That Ketogenic Eating Plan

Ketogenic eating might just be the most popular idea in the unconventional health and fitness movement right now. I get dozens of emails a week from people asking for Keto tips and tricks. I’m not convinced that most of these people should be Keto though. It’s been billed as a great way to lose weight, which has attracted a lot of attention, but it’s not all roses, unicorns, and fairy dust. Here’s three reasons why you might want to reconsider your plan to go Keto… 1. Ketogenic eating is obsessive. When I interviewed Jimmy Moore, author of Keto Clarity, this is one of the issues I brought up. Ketosis is notoriously difficult to get into, verify, and sustain without bringing back some of the old, obsessive Dieting strategies that we’ve been working hard to get away from. Tracking macros, monitoring blood glucose, and testing ketone levels are all required steps in the process for most people. This kind of protocol attracts people with disordered eating habits. It’s the perfect blend of effective, obsessive, and new. If you’re trying to get into ketosis for medical reasons, then you’ve gotta do what you’ve gotta do. If you want to get into ketosis because you heard it’s great for weight loss or for some other non-medical reason, it’s too obsessive for my taste. 2. Ketogenic eating probably doesn’t fit your lifestyle. You know me—I’m not a huge fan of cardio or long workouts. I’m bearish on exercise as a modern concept, but I’m bullish on functional fitness and DWYLT. In other words, I want people to do active things they love with a little sprinting and short functional strength workouts thrown in. In order to actually enjoy those things and feel strong and healthy when doing them, you’ll need adequate glycogen. That’s something that Continue reading >>

How Long Does It Take For The Ketosis Diet To Work?

How Long Does It Take For The Ketosis Diet To Work?

When it comes to weight loss, everyone wants rapid results. A ketosis diet, better known as a ketogenic diet or low-carb diet, helps you lose weight by forcing your body to burn fat for energy instead of carbs, causing you to go into a state of ketosis. The rate of weight loss on a ketosis diet varies, and how long it takes to work depends on how much weight you need to lose, but you may be able to lose more than 12 pounds in a month. Video of the Day Your body's preferred source of fuel is glucose, which is derived from carbohydrates. When fasting, your body undergoes hormonal changes that stimulate the release of fat from your fat cells, where it is transported to the liver and made into ketones, which are then used for energy. The ketogenic diet is high in fat and protein and low in carbohydrates, which mimics fasting to produce ketones and the state of ketosis. How quickly you get into ketosis varies, but can happen in one to two days. When followed as advised, people on a ketogenic diet for weight loss lose weight and lose it quickly, according to dietitian Juliette Kellow. According to a 2008 study published in the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition," men who followed a ketogenic diet for four weeks lost an average of 12 pounds. The men in the study were able to eat fewer calories without feeling hungry or dissatisfied. It's important to note that this was a small, short-term study, and weight loss results may vary. The concern with losing weight too quickly is that you lose muscle and water rather than fat. Most health care professionals recommend a slow rate of weight loss of about 1 to 2 pounds a week. Losing water and muscle on a weight-loss diet may zap your energy levels and your motivation, and you may be more likely to regain the weight. While ketogen Continue reading >>

The Ketogenic Diet And Weight Loss Plateaus

The Ketogenic Diet And Weight Loss Plateaus

I keep hearing people talk about their weight loss plateaus, and how they can get around them. Some go the extreme route of doing liquid fasting, others will ignore it and keep on keeping on. I wanted to put together a short list of common things that may be wreaking havok on the average ketogenic dieter, and go over some solutions that might help out. Keep in mind, this does not cover everything and it also covers a wide range of topics. As you read this, please read to the end. Don’t form ideas about your own body and apply the things that I am saying with no thought behind it. This is strictly for people that are hitting weight loss plateau’s and need some help. If you have only lost 1 or 2 pounds in a week, that is still weight loss and does not require action against it. Hidden Carbohydrates People on ketogenic diets eat more carbohydrates than they think. They’re hidden in vegetables, nuts, and certain meat products. Yes, that peanut butter you’re chomping on could be causing a problem! Especially if it’s store bought – that stuff is loaded with extra sugar. Some vegetables like Brussels sprouts, broccoli, and squash are common culprits that find their way into our lives on a frequent basis. You might think that they’re low carb, but in large consumption, those carbs really do add up. You can look at the list of the best low carb vegetables we’ve put together, so that you can be more aware of the vegetables you eat. Meat is the center of most of our lives, and there’s sugar everywhere you look. Some bacon is honey smoked, adding unnecessary carbs to an already delicious product. Why the madness? Look for bacon with no sugar added. When you start to look into Italian sausages, chorizo, and canned meats, there’s more carbs than most think. Some b Continue reading >>

How To Know If The Ketogenic Diet Is Right For You

How To Know If The Ketogenic Diet Is Right For You

It’s almost a universally accepted fact that diets leave you hungry. After all, that rumbling tummy two hours after mealtime (not to mention, strict and time-consuming calorie counting) is the reason most New Year’s resolutions fail by February, right? But Dr. Jacob Wilson and Ryan Lowery, the authors of The Ketogenic Bible, say you don’t need to go hungry or count calories to lose weight. The ketogenic diet, also referred to as “keto,” is a dieting method gaining popularity from people with diabetes to CrossFitters. “The ketogenic diet induces ketosis, which is a state where your body is running primarily off of fat and ketones,” explains Wilson, instead of sugar from carbs. “That can occur through lowering your carbohydrates and having very high fat intake.” Specifically, the ketogenic diet targets about 80 percent of calories from fat, 15 percent from protein and 5 percent from carbohydrates. RELATED: Why You Should Eat More Fat and Less Sugar The Upside of Ketosis While this method may have gained popularity among athletes and other hard-core fitness buffs, they’re far from the only ones who will see benefits from this method. “When you implement a well-formulated proper ketogenic diet, you can see improvement in performance and body composition at the same time,” says Lowery. You’ll look leaner and shed fat, but you won’t feel sapped of energy like when you decrease calories. The bonus is you won’t experience the post-meal crash associated with a higher-carb diet, he says. Lowery also says that for most ketogenic diet newbies, there won’t be a need to count overall calories either. As long as you’re paying attention to your diet and inducing ketosis through high-fat and low-carb consumption, most dieters automatically hit a calorie Continue reading >>

The Keto Diet Is Gaining Popularity, But Is It Safe?

The Keto Diet Is Gaining Popularity, But Is It Safe?

A new twist on extreme weight loss is catching on in some parts of the United States. It’s called the "keto diet." People promoting the diet say it uses the body’s own fat burning system to help people lose significant weight in as little as 10 days. It has also been known to help moderate the symptoms of children with epilepsy, although experts are not quite sure why it works. Proponents say the diet can produce quick weight loss and provide a person with more energy. However, critics say the diet is an unhealthy way to lose weight and in some instances it can be downright dangerous. Read More: What is the “Caveman Diet?” » What Is Ketosis? The “keto” diet is any extremely low- or no-carbohydrate diet that forces the body into a state of ketosis. Ketosis occurs when people eat a low- or no-carb diet and molecules called ketones build up in their bloodstream. Low carbohydrate levels cause blood sugar levels to drop and the body begins breaking down fat to use as energy. Ketosis is actually a mild form of ketoacidosis. Ketoacidosis mostly affects people with type 1 diabetes. In fact, it is the leading cause of death of people with diabetes who are under 24 years of age. However, many experts say ketosis itself is not necessarily harmful. Some studies, in fact, suggest that a ketogenic diet is safe for significantly overweight or obese people. However, other clinical reviews point out that patients on low-carbohydrate diets regain some of their lost weight within a year. Where It’s Helpful The keto diet was created by Dr. Gianfranco Cappello, an associate professor of surgery at the Sapienza University in Rome, Italy. He claims great success among thousands of users. In his study, more than 19,000 dieters experienced significant, rapid weight loss, few side Continue reading >>

When Low Carb Isn't Working

When Low Carb Isn't Working

The diet books make it sound easy. Cut the carbs, lose the weight, normalize your blood sugar, feel great. For many people, it works that way. But for many more it doesn't. When I reviewed the research that went into my book, Diet 101: The Truth About Low Carb Diets I was surprised to learn just how poorly low carb dieters fared in the research studies that I had always seen cited in the low carb community as proving the diet superior to others. Partly this is because few diets of any kind work well for more than a few months, and looked at in that time frame, the low carb diet often surpasses others in it's effectiveness. But once most people get past the first six months of of their low carb diets, peer reviewed research and the posts of hundreds of people who visit online low carb discussion boards make it very clear that many if not most people see their weight loss stall out completely. This doesn't have to be the case. There are a few, very interesting studies, that show that weight loss can continue on low carb diets, though at a much slower pace than dieters grew accustomed to during the first heady months of their diets. Here are some common problems low carb dieters encounter, along with some suggestions as to how to deal with them. You'll find more in Diet 101. Not losing weight is the most common form of "not working" that low carb dieters encounter. There are plenty of lists of "What to Do When you Stall" posted elsewhere on the web, in diet books, and even on this site, so I won't repeat them. Check them out. If you haven't worked your way through the usual solutions, which include cutting back on calories, cutting out bogus "low carb" foods full of hidden carbohydrate, and eliminating certain other foods that tend to stall people, you can't really say tha Continue reading >>

Is The Ketogenic Diet Right For You? Nutritionists Weigh In

Is The Ketogenic Diet Right For You? Nutritionists Weigh In

You may be hearing a lot about the ketogenic diet as a way to slim down while noshing on butter and heavy cream. This way of eating is suddenly hot among venture capitalists in Silicon Valley, who believe it will help them live longer and healthier, CNBC reports. Some praise the high-fat/ultra low-carb plan for helping them to lose weight and have energy all day long. Other advocates say it finally helped them to get control of their body. How does it work and could it help you? We asked Bonnie Taub-Dix, a registered dietitian nutritionist and author of “Read It Before You Eat It”; and Keri Glassman, nutritionist, registered dietitian and TODAY Tastemaker. To start with, both said they would never advise the ketogenic diet for weight loss. “Cutting out carbs is usually an invitation to overeat them at another point,” Taub-Dix said. “For a diet where you’re looking to lose weight, look good and feel good… I would not recommend a diet like this.” “For safe and effective weight loss, the carb reduction is too extreme,” Glassman added. RELATED: Read inspiring stories of ordinary people slimming down in TODAY's My Weight-Loss Journey Here’s what you need to know: What is the ketogenic diet? It’s a diet fine-tuned in the 1920s to help treat epilepsy. It does help to control seizures in some children, but it’s not recommended for adults “mostly because the restricted food choices make it hard to follow,” the Epilepsy Foundation says. The diet has just recently begun to be touted as a weight loss plan, Glassman noted. She described it as eating “mostly fat with a teeny bit of protein and carbs.” How does it work? Your body normally relies on carbohydrates for energy. It breaks them down into glucose, which is your main source of fuel. If that Continue reading >>

Top 15 Reasons You Are Not Losing Weight On A Low-carb Diet

Top 15 Reasons You Are Not Losing Weight On A Low-carb Diet

Low-carb diets are very effective. That is a scientific fact. However, as with any diet, people sometimes stop losing before they reach their desired weight. Here are the top 15 reasons why you're not losing weight on a low-carb diet. Weight loss isn't a linear process. If you weigh yourself every day, then there will be days where the scale goes down, other days where it goes up. It doesn't mean that the diet isn't working, as long as the general trend is going downwards. Many people lose a lot of weight in the first week of low-carbing, but it is mostly water weight. Weight loss will slow down significantly after that initial phase. Of course, losing weight is not the same as losing fat. It is possible, especially if you're new to weight lifting, that you are gaining muscle at the same time that you're losing fat. To make sure that you're losing, use something other than just the scale (which is a big, fat liar). Use a measuring tape to measure your waist circumference and have your body fat percentage measured every month or so. Also, take pictures. Take note of how your clothes fit. If you're looking thinner and your clothes are looser, then you ARE losing fat no matter what the scale says. Weight loss isn’t linear and there’s a lot more to weight than just body fat. Be patient and use other ways of measuring than just the scale. Some people are more carb sensitive than others. If you're eating low-carb and your weight starts to plateau, then you may want to cut back on carbs even further. In that case, go under 50 grams of carbs per day. When you go under 50 grams per day then you're going to have to eliminate most fruits from your diet, although you can have berries in small amounts. If that doesn't work either, going under 20 grams temporarily can work... eat Continue reading >>

How To Lose Stubborn Belly Fat Through Ketosis

How To Lose Stubborn Belly Fat Through Ketosis

Losing stubborn belly fat is one of the biggest challenges when getting in shape. Belly fat is not only aesthetically unappealing, it has health consequences. It can make you vulnerable to many conditions such as diabetes and heart problems. In this blog, we will share with you why belly fat is so ‘stubborn’ to burn, explain what exactly is Ketosis and how you can lose stubborn belly fat through Ketosis. We will also share a specific exercise and a diet plan to help burn this belly fat. What is Stubborn Belly fat and why it is bad for our health? While you may have fat all over different parts of your body, it isn’t the same. Stubborn belly fat is the soft layers of fat around the waistline that covers your abs. To be more precise, there are three types of fat: Triglycerides– A fat circulates in your blood Subcutaneous Fat– The layer of fat directly below the skin’s surface. This is the fat you can grab with your hands Visceral Fat– The dangerous fat. This is located beneath the muscles in your stomach Belly fat unfortunately does not just sit still. Some visceral fat is necessary, but too much can lead to health problems. You can estimate whether you are carrying too much belly fat by measuring your waist with tape. Anything over 80 cm (31.5 inches) in women and 94 cm (37 inches) can provoke health issues. Carrying excess visceral fat is associated with an increased risk for: Coronary heart disease Cancer Stroke Dementia Diabetes Depression Arthritis Obesity Sexual dysfunction Sleep disorders Why is Stubborn belly fat so “Stubborn”? To understand what makes belly fat so difficult to burn,let’s dive into the biology. Burning fat is a two-part process: Lipolysis is the process whereby fat cells release molecules of stored fat into the blood. Oxidation Continue reading >>

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