The ketogenic diet has garnered the attention of the nutrition space due to its profound ability to shift your metabolism into a fat-burning mode.
When you follow a properly formulated keto diet, your body begins burning ketones for energy instead of glucose from carbohydrates.
This fat-burning mode is also known as ketosis.
If you’re a beginner, this article we’ll teach you everything you need to know about ketosis.
What is Ketosis?
Ketosis is a metabolic state where your body burns fat - both dietary and stored body fat - for energy.
This occurs when there is little to no glucose left in your body. Glucose is the main fuel source that comes from carbohydrates. When you restrict carbs from your diet and increase healthy fats, your body seeks out other sources of energy.
Eventually it will turn to fat stores and break them down to produce ketones.
Once ketones are formed in your body, you can finally use it for energy.
To get into ketosis, you need to consume less than 50g of carbohydrates per day. This means you must remove grains, potatoes, fruits, and other high-carbohydrate food sources.
How Do You Know When You’re In Ketosis?
The most effective way to find out if you’re in ketosis is by using a blood glucose meter. While this may be the most accurate method, it’s also the most expensive.
Testing with urine strips cost must less but it’s nowhere near as effective as a blood glucose meter. This is because when your body gets used to using ketones for energy, it excretes less ketones through urine, which often gives inaccurate results from the strips.
You can also determine whether or not you’re in ketosis by how you feel. Once you’re in ketosis, you’ll notice that you get hungry less often, you have more energy, and experience mental clarity.
You may also notice that you’re frequenting the bathroom more often and your breath may have a metallic taste to it. These are two tell-tale signs that you’re in ketosis.
Benefits of Ketosis
The ketogenic diet was initially used back in the early 1900’s to help treat seizures that epileptic children experienced. Many studies have proven keto to be a remarkable treatment for this disorder[*][*][*].
Science and anecdotal reports are now proving that there are several other health benefits that come with being in ketosis.
Ketosis is a Fantastic Weight Loss Tool
The ketogenic diet is highly supported by science. Many studies have found that the ketogenic diet leads to much greater weight loss compared to low-fat diets[*][*].
People who are in ketosis benefit from satiety effects and feel less hungry throughout the day, which both contribute to faster weight loss.
Additionally, ketosis primes your metabolism to burn fat. This means your body will burn more stored body fat compared to any other diet even if calorie intake is the same.
Ketosis Improves Brain Function
When you burn ketones for energy, you’ll soon realize that brain fog diminishes and your mood is lifted. Research has proven that the brain actually prefers ketones as an energy source compared to glucose[*][*].
Being in ketosis will help you gain mental clarity, improve your mood, and even help you focus for longer periods of time.
Ketosis Improves Athletic Performance
Many elite marathon runners are now using the ketogenic diet as a tool to improve exercise performance. During long runs, many athletes would crash mid-run because their glucose stores were fully depleted.
But when you’re in ketosis, your body can harness its own stored body fat for energy.
Picture it like this: Carbohydrates can only store up to ~2,000 calories in the body for energy. But when you run on ketones, you’re tapping into an energy source of up to ~40,000 that can be used for fuel without stopping.
Ketosis is the Preferred Energy Source For Your Body
Science is finally catching up to the benefits of the being in a state of ketosis. From the profound weight loss benefits, to the mental clarity, it’s no wonder that the ketogenic diet has become the most popular eating protocol.
As long as you follow a properly formulated ketogenic diet, being in a state of ketosis will help you reach your health and fitness goals in no time!
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