Keto for Brain Health

We are starting to hear more and more about the benefits of staying Ketosis, and it is for a good reason. It is the process in which your body burns ketones as a source of energy rather than glucose which is obtained primarily through carbohydrates. Ketones are obtained from fatty acids that blow into the blood and are metabolized by cells and this process is referred to as beta-oxidation.

What Happens in Beta Oxidation?

A new molecule is produced called acetyl-coA and it starts to increase in cells in your body. The liver then triggers the process of ketogenesis which prohibits this excess acetl-coA. The liver dumps ketone bodies in the blood and it starts to be taken up the skeletal and heart muscles when they can and the brain takes whatever access amount is left and that has crossed the blood brain barrier.

What Exactly are ketone Bodies?
The alternative energy source is beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) plus acetoacetate; these two compounds are called “ketone bodies”. When the body is consuming much less carbohydate and insulin levels in the blood is low, your body may start consuming keytone bodies for up to 50% of it’s energy requirements and for the brain the number is much higher. This generally occurs naturally when your body is in short supply of carbohydrates, in-fact your body prefers to burn this ‘fat’ rather than glucose for energy as it can be seen as a cleaner ‘fuel’.

Are there any ways to get into Ketosis Quicker?
Sure, you can firstly buy purified coconut oil which is high in MCT (High in Octanic Acid Preferably) which provides your body with ketones. Additionally you may also buy BHB powder which is a salt directly which will provide your body with the ingredient that your body turns into ketones. Some popular brands are Ketoforce, KetoCaNa and KetoOS.

How Do You know You are in Ketosis?
Your blood BHB levels go above 1mM. You can aditionally buy test strips that measure the level of ketones in your blood. Additionally the longer you are in ketosis the strips will start informing you that the level of ketones in your blood is lowering, however this just means that your body is getting better at absorbing ketones to power it!

Watch this additional video to learn more about Ketogensis and if a Keto Diet is right for you:

 

http://www.pnas.org/content/97/10/5440.abstract