The vast majority of us know someone who’s in the throes of learning what is ketosis, trying a ketogenic diet, or at the very least thinking about trying it. But separating fact from fiction is a real chore with this complex naturalistic approach to health, so today Blender Babes is delving into an in-depth analysis of ketosis, as well as explaining in thorough, yet simple detail exactly what a ketogenic diet really looks, feels, smells and tastes like!
And more importantly, we’ll touch on the key aspects of why you might want to give serious consideration into incorporating as many facets of the ketogenic lifestyle into your daily routine as possible; the overall health and wellness benefits truly are remarkable!
In this quick video, Dr. Axe explains how Ketogenic diets can actually help weight loss, cancer, and even Alzheimer’s disease.
We’ll also be introducing you to one of the most super passionate registered health nutritionists (RHN) in the ketogenic arena, who can teach you the most effective and fun, as well as economical methods for succeeding in this excitingly atavistic way of living—which we’re gonna go ahead and do right now!
Leanne Vogel RHN resides in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She’s a holistic nutritionist, food blogger, and Blender Babes contributor, who’s committed to happiness, health, and becoming the best individual she can possibly be.
Ultimately striving to help those she coaches fall in love with themselves, Leanne utilizes a wondrous array of delicious allergen-free recipes, comprehensive meal plans, and thoughtful personal development strategies to liberate health conscious people from the overwhelmingly controlling power that unhealthy food can have over one’s life.
Ssssooooo if you’re someone who hasn’t heard anything about this mysterious health regime, with all of its dramatic weight loss, explosive energy gains, beautiful levels of mental clarity and tremendous healthcare savings, get ready for an incredibly informative ride.
What is Ketosis? – All the Basic Facts
Ketosis is the metabolic state in which the vast majority of the body’s energy comes from ketone bodies in the blood. This is in sharp contrast to deriving energy from carbohydrates, the body’s breakdown of which is called glycolysis, and results in glucose and glycogen—better known as SUGAR—flooding the bloodstream.
And since most people (even the healthiest among us 😉 know just how hard those pangs of hunger hit when blood sugar levels fall, it’s quite simple to understand how continuing to eat carbohydrates—even for those who can restrict their intake somewhat—provides all the lightning fast energy that modern mankind runs on.
Buuuuttttt without the ability to make ketones, the human race wouldn’t have survived for very long.
IMPORTANT DIETARY NOTE: “Carbohydrates” are not just breads, pastas, rice, corn and potatoes—they’re also fruit, berries, starchy vegetables, beans, legumes, nuts and seeds (as well as a whole host of other foods that you wouldn’t even guess)… Some of which score high on the Glycemic Index, which means they flood the bloodstream with sugar quickly, while others have a low Glycemic Index score, meaning that their sugar is released more slowly.
Ketosis represents the metabolic change in the way that the body derives its energy. It is the normal, adaptive, and physiologic response that is essential for survival. In its most fundamental sense, ketosis is the way Mother Nature enables the human race to survive for long periods of time without food…
And when viewed in the context of evolution, it’s easy to see how this energy mechanism allowed our hunter-gatherer ancestors to endure famine, yet still have the strength, stamina, and mental acuity to aggressively pursue and slay their prey—yielding them their next feast.
But we don’t eat ketones, our liver makes them! (And we promise, that’ll make sense by the end of the article)
The easiest way to begin to understand ketosis is to view it terms of fasting, which all of us do to some extent. While normal healthy people sleep, the body’s metabolism burns up all the remaining sugar in the bloodstream, then naturally transitions into ketosis to power its rejuvenative functions throughout the rest of the night…
Buuuuttttt this metabolic process reverts back to glycolysis right after eating a carbohydrate-rich meal (take a moment and picture what you, as well as the vast majority of people, have for breakfast each morning—high Glycemic Index scoring carbs galore we’re betting ;).
So while the body is being powered by glycolysis—carbohydrates, and thus SUGAR—this causes the pancreas to produce higher levels of insulin, whose job is to make sure glucose enters the cells to be burned (oxidized) for energy… Giving us all the power we need, but also storing the excesses as body fat, while at the same time blocking the release of previously stored fat from existing fat tissues.
THIS is the very reason some people struggle to lose weight—this constant intake of seemingly ever-increasing amounts of sugar, which as the years pass, the body just gets less and less efficient at burning up!
This downward metabolic spiral can even be problematic for those eating too much sweet fruit and other natural, high Glycemic Index scoring carbohydrates, making it virtually impossible to ever achieve that lean, toned body most people profess to want…
Whereas in ketosis, fat reserves are readily released and burned for fuel—which is exactly why ketosis is called the body’s FAT BURNING MODE. Transitioning your body’s energy source to ketosis is also the single most powerful way of avoiding ALL of modern mankind’s most disastrous of chronic degenerative disease—the primary cause of ALL of which can be traced back to, anyone like to take a guess…? SUGAR!
Metabolic Syndrome Defined
Metabolic Syndrome is the disastrous energy utilization and storage problem that is plaguing the known modern world. It is caused primarily by obesity and inactivity, and is directly related to insulin resistance. Conservative estimates put 33 % of the American adult population into this category, with its prevalence increasing with age. If you have three (3) of these five (5) medical conditions you are suffering from Metabolic Syndrome:
- Abdominal fat
- High blood pressure
- Elevated fasting blood sugar levels
- High triglyceride levels
- Low levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol levels
Having Metabolic Syndrome puts you at enormously increased risk for developing the most catastrophic diseases of our time, which include:
A Ketogenic Diet Plan to the Rescue
A Ketogenic Diet Plan is the one surefire way to avoid having to suffer from the most soul crushing diseases of our time… the only problem is that it requires you to drastically reduce your consumption of carbohydrates, which most people regard as being just way too extreme.
But what those who have yet to experience the benefits of ketosis firsthand fail to understand, is that all that incredibly powerful FAT-BURNING ENGERY ketosis produces is created from some of the most deliciously nourishing foods mankind has ever tasted!
In addition to which, you’ll still be able to eat carbohydrates—just as long as you don’t overdo it, while at the same time learning to restrict your binges more and more by satisfying those inevitable cravings for sugar with carbs that have a low Glycemic Index score… which as time passes and your body naturally adapts to ketosis, gets easier and easier.
This is of course difficult for most people to accept, but it does and will happen—just not before putting in the work. These gains are real, and once you’ve truly experienced how incredible your body feels and how focused your mind becomes while being powered by the most efficient energy source human beings have ever known, you’ll rarely if ever want to ruin these wonderful feelings by eating too many carbohydrates.
Getting Into Nutritional Ketosis
Nutritional Ketosis is the normal physiological response to varying degrees of carbohydrate restriction and/or fasting. It requires that you get 80 percent of your calories from fat, which although sounds as counterintuitive as it does daunting, gives you the opportunity to create mouth-watering meals that’ll keep you totally and completely satisfied!
Delicious Sources of Good Healthy Fats Include:
- Grass-fed meat, bacon, cheese, eggs and butter
- Salmon, scallops, sardines and tuna
- Duck and goose
- Oysters and mussels
- Raw nuts and seeds
- Olives and Olive oil
- Coconut oil
And these are just a few of the heavenly delectable foods that’ll change the course of your life.
Ketosis typically kicks in after three (3) or four (4) days of eating less than 50 grams of carbohydrates a day—which is about three (3) slices of bread, a cup of low-fat fruit yogurt, OR two (2) small bananas. For those wanting benefits as fast as possible, this is the level of low Glycemic Index scoring carbohydrate intake you’ll wanna strive for because it’s the quickest way to make your liver produce ketones (which we promise, you’re now halfway to understanding. 😉
IMPORTANT DIETARY NOTE: Getting into Nutritional Ketosis should only be attempted by healthy people; if you are diabetic, pregnant, or have kidney problems you should always consult a physician before making any radical dietary changes.
Now in order to succeed with this complex naturalistic way of living there’s of course a tremendous amount more to learn and do, all of which can be shared with you by today’s totally inspiring Registered Health Nutritionist of a guest…
Leanne Vogel RHN & The Keto Beginning
Leanne Vogel created The Keto Beginning right after personally experiencing just how incredibly powerful a high-fat diet could really be. Her 30 Day Meal Plan features an array of awesome strategies for adapting to the Ketogenic Lifestyle, all of which unite to transform your health and make you fall in love with yourself all over again! Her 30 day meal plan includes shopping lists and over 70 low-carb, high-fat, moderate-protein, dairy-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, grain-free, legume-free recipes – such as chicken pot pie and beef kebabs with dairy-free tzaziki, curried chicken wings and even chili cheese fries! We’re IN LOVE with all the tasty sauces too! This is the lifestyle change that empowers your body + mind to achieve the state of health you’ve been searching for.
The Keto Beginning Teaches:
- Whether or not Nutritional Ketosis is right for you
- How to follow Nutritional Ketosis for life
- Various ways to get nutrients while on a Ketogenic Diet Plan
- How to maintain your desired weight
- How to achieve and monitor proper ketone production levels
- How digestion affects acne production and skin imperfections
- How to balance hormone levels
- How to manage Nutritional Ketosis with multiple food allergies
- The difference between “being in ketosis” and “being keto-adapted”
- How alcohol reacts in the body while in ketosis
Having personally experienced almost all of a Ketogenic Diet Plan’s ups and downs, Leanne has also created a comprehensive list of ketosis tips and ketogenic tricks that’ll allow you to transition into this remarkable way of living with amazing ease.
The Keto Beginning’s Strategies for Success Include:
- The best ways to adapt Nutritional Ketosis to suit your needs and lifestyle
- What to do when you crave carbs
- Best low-carb winter vegetables for staying in Nutritional Ketosis
- The best ways to incorporate Superfoods into a Ketogenic Lifestyle
- The healthiest dairy choices
- Techniques for vegan and vegetarian-based Nutritional Ketosis
- Tips for enjoying the holidays while in ketosis
- How to avoid keto-flu
Getting to Know the Ketogenic Lifestyle
For those wanting to get to know the Ketogenic Lifestyle immediately, the following is a short list of foods, supplements, fitness products and media that’ll help you throughout your introduction to Leanne’s delicious Keto Beginning meal plans, as well as for the rest of your new powerful Ketogenic Lifestyle.
Ketogenic Foods & Supplements Include:
- Almond Flour
- Beef Tallow
- Cacao Powder
- Chia Seeds
- Coconut Butter (here’s how you can make it in your blender!)
- Coconut Milk
- Coconut Oil
- Collagen Powder (we use NeoCell)
- Duck Fat
- Egg White Protein Powder
- Fish Oil
- Grape Seed Oil
- Hemp Pro 70
- Hemp Pro Fiber
- Hemp Seeds
- Himalayan Salt
- Macadamia Nuts
- Nutritional Yeast
- Pork Rinds
- Red Palm Oil
- Vegan Greens+O
Ketone Production & Blood Glucose Monitoring Equipment:
Media on How to Use Ketosis to Lose, Gain and/or Maintain Weight:
- The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance
- The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living: An Expert Guide to Making the Life-Saving Benefits of Carbohydrate Restriction Sustainable and Enjoyable
- The Calorie Myth: How to Eat More, Exercise Less, Lose Weight, and Live Better
- Carb-Loaded – a Culture Dying to Eat
How Ketosis Works
By now you’re probably wondering how ketosis produces such miraculous results. The metabolic process by which ketosis creates such dramatically powerful and sustained energy is of course incredibly complex, but the broad strokes are fairly easy to understand. It really all comes down to how much Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP) your body produces.
Known as our “Energy Currency,” ATP is the molecule that powers muscle contraction, the beating of your heart, your lungs’ ability to breathe in oxygen, the fluttering of your eyelids—EVERYTHING your body does runs on ATP, and is collectively known as your METABOLISM. Without ATP we wouldn’t be alive, so ultimately the body’s primary goal is to maximize, optimize, and insure a steady flow of ATP.
ATP contains three phosphates (Adenosine Tri-phosphate 😉 and when it gives up a phosphate to power your cells, a spectacular amount of energy is released, which your body then runs on!
Now under normal metabolic functioning running on glycolysis, even though a maximum of only four (4) units of ATP are utilized, this is more than enough to power the entire body… buuuuttttt only until all that sugar is burned up, which happens rather quickly. This makes sugar the perfect fuel for immediate energy needs such as intense physical exercise.
Nevertheless, Mother Nature didn’t design us to constantly utilize energy like this, and when blood sugar levels fall (here’s the key to it all right here!), YOUR BRAIN TELLS YOUR LIVER TO PRODUCE KETONES—the most powerful of which is called Beta-Hydroxybutyrate. And guess what all of today’s cutting-edge research clearly shows that the brain and heart run much more efficiently on than sugar… Beta-Hydroxybutyrate!
Which makes total sense when put in the context of just how much energy the body produces while in ketosis. Burning fat for fuel creates a staggering 34 UNITS of ATP—which is a tremendous amount of energy that the body can run on for dramatically longer periods of time.
This incredible amount of power also accounts for all of the increased energy, rapid weight loss and intense mental clarity that those living on a Ketogenic Diet typically report—all of which makes what many mistakenly view as harsh dietary changes completely worth the effort!
So ultimately, the more efficient your body is at burning fats, the more easily it’ll be able to maintain a stable blood sugar level—which is the key to preventing and even reversing Metabolic Syndrome!
Share Your Ketogenic Journey
Blender Babes couldn’t be more excited about bringing this incredible information to the members of our community who want to find out if the Ketogenic Lifestyle is the dietary regime they should be following. Please let us know about any and all successes and/or setbacks in the Comments Section you experience while giving this powerful naturalistic way of living a try.
Good Luck! … And as always,