Want to know how to get into Ketosis? Before we answer that question let's look into what is ketosis.
What Is Ketosis
Our body generally gets its fuel from our dietary carbohydrates intake. This includes foods like pasta, bread, rice, and other grains, as well as fruit, sugars, and vegetables.
When carbohydrates, particularly starches and sugars get into our body they are broken down into glucose. Our body then uses it for energy. The hormone insulin then steps in to eliminate glucose from the bloodstream, and our body either uses it for energy or stores any unused glucose.
If there is any glucose that is not used up immediately by our body it be sent to the liver and muscles to be stored as glycogen which is a fuel reserve.
If we don't use the unused glycogen through exercise or another form of energy expenditure, then the glycogen will be turned into stored body fat.
It's a grim outlook for people who are carb sensitive or insulin-resistant which can lead to obesity and type 2 diabetes.
High carb diet => high glucose in the blood => high insulin => high amounts of body fat
What Is Ketosis?
How To Get Into Ketosis?
Lipolysis And Ketosis
So what's an alternative source of fuel besides carb? It is our own body fat. When carb intake is limited our body will be triggered to use its own body fat as fuel.
So what does that mean? That means we will burn our stored body fat. When this happens our body enters a state called lipolysis.
It is the most efficient biochemical pathway to weight loss and a scientifically proven alternative to the body using or needing glucose for energy.
When lipolysis happens, the body burns its own fat stores for energy instead of dietary carbs, by-products are created and they are called ketones. So ketosis is the secondary process of lipolysis.
The Science Of Fat Loss: Lipolysis
6 Tips To Help You Get Into Ketosis
Minimize Carb Intake
One of the easiest ways to get into ketosis is by eating a low carb diet. This is because we will force our body to use fat for fuel.
In a normal situation, our cells use glucose as its main source of fuel. However, most of our cells can also utilize other fuel sources.
This other fuel source includes fatty acids and ketones, which are also known as ketone bodies.
The glucose that we take in is stored in our liver and muscles as glycogen. When we reduced carb intake to a very low amount our glycogen store is reduced. Our insulin level will also decline.
Consequently, fatty acids are released from our fat stores in our bodies.
Your liver converts some of these fatty acids into ketone bodies. These ketones can be used as fuel by some parts of the brain.
It has been said that we need to limit carbs intake to no more than 20 grams per day.
But it is somewhat dependent on each individual. Some people can get into ketosis by limiting their carb intake to 20 grams or less, some people can have more than 20 grams.
That is why the Atkins diet suggestion is to limit carb intake to 20 grams or less per day for 2 weeks so that ketosis can be achieved.
After that, you can add a small amount of carbs back to your diet slowly as long as you can maintain ketosis.
Increase Your Physical Activity
The more energy you use through exercise or other forms of physical activity the more food you will need to eat for fuel.
Physical activities help to deplete glycogen stores in our bodies. And normally our bodies replenish the glycogen store by us consuming carbs.
But if you are on a low-carb diet then you won't be replenishing your glycogen stores. However, it will take some time for your body to learn to use fat stores as fuel instead of glycogen.
How To Get Into Ketosis Fast!
Fast For A Short Period Of Time
When we fast we can get into the state of ketosis, actually people can go into ketosis between meals.
Some people practice fasting once a week and some can go for 2 consecutive days of fasting. But do consult your doctor before you start fasting.
Another form of fasting is fat fasting which involves reducing your calorie intake significantly. It also involves eating a diet consisting of almost entirely of fats but only for no more than 2 or 3 days.
There is evidence to indicate that this form of fasting might affect your weight loss effort in a positive way. But fat fasting may be difficult to maintain, and may not be the best method for most people.
Coconut Oil Is A Great Help To Get Into Ketosis
Coconut oil can be a great help to get you into ketosis. It contains medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) and it can be quickly absorbed by our body. It is then transported to our liver to be used immediately for energy or converted into ketones.
Over 50% of the fats in coconut oil are medium-chain fatty acids (MCTs), most of which is lauric acid.
When treating epileptic children, MCTs have been used to induce ketosis without restricting carbs as drastically as in the ketogenic diet.
Increase Healthy Fat Consumption
Consume a lot of healthy fat if you want to boost your ketone levels which in turn will help you get into ketosis.
A low-carb ketogenic diet is not only extremely low in carb but it is also high in fat.
Ketogenic diets designed for weight loss and exercise performance usually provide between 60–80% of calories from fat.
The ketogenic diet used to treat epilepsy is even higher in fat, which is typically 85–90% of calories from fat.
However, extremely high fat intake doesn't mean you will achieve higher ketone levels.
Furthermore, due to the fact that a ketogenic diet is largely made up of fats, it's important that you choose high-quality sources.
Good source of fats include avocado oil, coconut oil, butter, sesame oil, sunflower oil and olive oil. In addition to that, there are many sources of healthy, high-fat foods that are also low in carbs.
However, if you are in a weight loss plan it's important to make sure you're not over-consuming too many calories in total.
Eat An Adequate Amount Of Protein
To achieve ketosis you have to consume adequate protein but not an excessive amount.
When you are on a keto diet you will need to consume an adequate amount of protein, not less than what you need. This is because protein is the building block of life and much needed for a healthy diet.
However, eating too much protein is one of the concerns for those who are keto diet's beginners.
So you might be thinking that since our bodies produce ketones from fat so we should cut down carbs and protein to the minimum. That is not necessarily true.
That is because by eating protein it won't affect your ketone levels. You can be eating a high-fat and high-protein diet but still stay in ketosis.
A good video about how much protein you need on a keto diet:
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