Many phrases are thrown around the health food and fitness world which may puzzle and confuse the average individual. One particular word which has been popular over the last decade is ‘ketosis,' a term first made popular by the Atkins diet of the early noughties. The popularity of ketosis has grown immensely with the recent trend in low-carb lifestyles.
When an individual fasts or follows a strict low-carb diet, the body enters the natural state of ketosis. Ketosis occurs when the body has no carbohydrates to use as energy and so begins to use the fat stores in the body.
When you eat a small number of carbohydrates along with a moderate amount of protein, fat is converted in the liver to small fuel molecules which are called ketones. Ketones then enter the bloodstream and are used as an alternative fuel by the body's cells in a way that glucose is used.
There are two main ways that your body can enter a state of ketosis; firstly through fasting and secondly by following a ketogenic diet. While fasting involves eating nothing, or very little, for a period of time, a ketogenic diet is a very low-carb diet which aims to become a sustainable lifestyle.
When eating very few or no carbohydrates, the limited reserves of glucose within your body begin to run-out. Subsequently, your body changes its fuel supply so that it runs on the fat store, therefore burning the fat in your body more effectively. Of course, fasting and eating nothing at all is the quickest way for your body to enter a state of ketosis, but fasting should only be done for a limited period and so is not sustainable. Beginning a keto diet which is full of nutrients is the best way to gradually allow the body to enter a state of ketosis.
The body is said to be in a state of ketosis once it produces sufficient ketones, measuring above 0.5mM in the blood.
Science has evidenced numerous benefits of ketosis:
The brain needs fuel just as much as the rest of the body and is able to burn carbs or ketones as an alternative. The brain is a smart organ which is able to exploit the fat stores in the body, as it would not be able to function or survive if it solely ran on carbohydrates. So, if no carbohydrates were eaten at all, the brain would perfectly function by using fat.
To enter a state of ketosis, the body must experience low levels of insulin, which is a hormone which stores fat. You can enter ketosis through eliminating carbohydrates from your daily diet, or by fasting. There's also many supplements out there to help you push through to enter Ketosis easier. One of them is Kegenix Prime: Weight loss Supplement.
In order to find out whether your body has achieved entering a state of ketosis, you could complete the following processes:
It is possible to read the signs of ketosis from listening to your own body. The following symptoms may mean that your body has entered a state of ketosis:
As well as aiming to enter your body into a state of ketosis, you should also be aware of the different degrees of ketosis. Exact degrees of ketosis can be determined through testing the levels of blood.
It is clear that on a Keto Diet you have to reduce and possibly minimize your carbohydrate intake. Therefore, typical carbohydrates such as bread, pasta, and rice are prohibited along with the usual poor food choices of cakes, donuts, and chocolate. But what food can you eat that will help you to enter a state of ketosis yet be nutritional and delicious? We also put an in-depth list of the type of food to have on Keto Diet.
While it is not possible to eat regular bread while on a keto diet, it is possible to make your own variation which suits the keto lifestyle. Take one and a quarter cups of almond flour, 5 tablespoons of ground psyllium husk powder, 2 tablespoons of baking powder, 1 tablespoon of sea salt, 2 tablespoons of vinegar, 1 cup of boiling water, 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds and 3 eggs whites.
To make the keto bread, mix all dry ingredients into a bowl while pre-heating the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Bring water to the boil and pour into the bowl along with the egg whites and the vinegar, beating for 30 seconds. Knead the dough and make 6 balls, placing each ball on a greased baking sheet. Bake for up to 60 minutes.
It is still possible to eat amazing snacks while maintaining a keto diet, such as delicious garlic bread made from the keto bread recipe and then coated in garlic butter.
Or, you could make cheese chips through pre-heating the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and placing cheese slices on a baking sheet, sprinkled with paprika. Bake for around 8 minutes and let them cool.
Alternatively, try something sweeter by making keto pancakes, mixing a batter together with 4 eggs, 7 ounces of cottage cheese, 1 tablespoon of ground psyllium husk powder and 2 ounces of either butter or coconut oil. Once the pancakes are cooked, add heavy whipping in a different bowl, whipping well until soft peaks form. Add the whipped cream to your pancakes along with a serving of berries.
EHI Primary Care is run by Cathy, a 20-something fitness guru and yoga enthusiast. This is my blog, where I cover all sorts of topics around my healthy lifestyle.