Keto Diet: 4 Possible Benefits and Risks of Ketone Production

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A feature that differentiates a ketogenic diet from other weight reduction techniques is a detectable modification in your metabolism – transitioning from carbohydrates to fat as your main energy source, operating with ketones.

Although it’s exciting to be able to modify your metabolic rate, ketone bodies have been around much longer than most think. You’ve probably been producing them for years already. What are the pros and cons of increasing one’s ketone production in terms of practical implications?

First, What is Glucose?

When you consume carbohydrates, they are transformed into glucose, which is a form of energy that can be used.

Glucose, a type of sugar, can be used right away as a source of energy, can stay in the bloodstream to keep the equilibrium of sugar levels, or can be stocked in the muscles, livers, or fatty tissue to be used at some other time.

However, glucose is not only significant for providing rapid energy. The only type of fuel that can pass through the blood-brain barrier is glucose. In other words, your brain loves carbs. This serves as another rationale for why your body favors this macro nutritionally. It is obvious that glucose plays a critical role in maintaining a stable blood sugar level as it is present in the blood. It is almost inconceivable to endure without it.

Without taking in carbohydrates, your body has to seek alternative methods to acquire glucose or an alternative efficient energy source that is able to provide your brain with energy – introducing ketones.

What Are Ketones?

Most cells draw their energy from glucose, primarily from carbohydrates.

When fasting for long periods of time, the glucose levels lower, causing the liver to produce ketones as a substitute for energy. These ketones are created from stored fats.

Science has found that ketones offer advantages over glucose. They use less energy and are beneficial sources of energy for bodily fabrics that have a quick metabolic rate, such as the brain and the muscles.

It has been demonstrated that these elements are essential for long life in creatures under observation and better metabolism in both humans and animals in the research.

There are two key ketones known as acetoacetate and beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB). Cells can split up these compounds to gain energy.

Fatty acids that form in the liver result in the manufacture of BHB, which in addition to managing energy expenditure, also controls metabolism.

Ketones are superior to other fuel sources for two main reasons:

  1. Unlike carbohydrates, ketones do not raise blood glucose levels and do not stimulate insulin secretion.
  2. Ketones require less processing than glucose to harness their energy. That means they consume less NAD + in their metabolism, leaving more of it circulating in the body. NAD + helps repair damaged DNA, and slow certain aging processes.

Ketones aren’t just an alternative fuel source. They impact the way our body processes food, creating the same advantages as diets that limit calories or ones that are based on periodic fasting. Decreasing the chances of developing metabolic disorder, diabetes, and cardiovascular illness.

Moreover, research has unveiled that ketones are noteworthy communicative compounds, stimulating pathways of long life that shield cells from deterioration linked to age.

How Your Body Makes Ketones

Ketogenesis is the process by which ketones are created when the demand for fatty acid fuel becomes higher or when more immediate forms of glucose are not readily available.

It is believed that when the production of ketones increases to the point that they become the main source of energy for the muscles and other organs, a condition called “nutritional ketosis” is reached.

Most people on a low-carb, ketogenic diet wish to achieve ketosis, which is a metabolic state at which their bodies are better able to utilize fat to generate energy.

Reaching ketosis can be difficult for some people, and depending on exercise routines, the glycogen in the body, and how well the body can use fat, it could take quite a few weeks to get there.

Fat vs. Ketones for Fuel

Fat can be utilized as an energy source, which is often referred to as using ketones, however this is not totally equivalent. Even when you have a high carb diet, you don’t have to enter ketosis to turn to fat as an energy source – it is a viable option to use fat quite often!

This primarily consists of fatty acids that are retrieved from stored fat. The body favors the use of stored fat to provide energy between meals, during sleep, and after lengthy periods of physical activity.

Your body is capable of holding onto and utilizing fat far more than it can manage with carbs, which is evident in the current prevalence of obesity. Fat provides twice as much energy as other sources for the same amount of effort, which makes it an attractive fuel source.

In contrast, ketones are produced when there is a scarcity of carbs or glucose. Ketones can provide energy to your body as fats do, yet vary from fatty acids since they can substitute carbs as an instant fuel and a means of giving energy to your brain and other organs that usually need glucose. This means that ketones shift your body’s reliance on glucose to focus on fatty acids as an energy source.

4 Possible Benefits of Ketone Production

The first thought of a ketogenic diet was developed in the beginning of the 20th century in order to manage convulsions in children who had epilepsy. Supporters of low carb diets have been vocal in their praise of a ketogenic diet, citing numerous potential health benefits.

Although there are lots of intriguing benefits to consider, there is not much scientific proof to back them up. Further investigation is necessary to determine if fueling the body with ketones can improve well-being or help with weight loss.

Here are 4 possible benefits to know:

1. Producing Ketones Might Help You Burn More Fat

Going into ketosis moves the body to improved fat burning aptitudes, potentially causing greater fat burning. As well, the process of utilizing fat or protein as fuel causes the body to expend more effort than if it were consuming carbohydrates, potentially leading to a slight rise in metabolism.

Although burning fat is not necessarily the same as reducing body fat, it is necessary to be in a calorie deficit in order to accomplish the latter. If you consume more calories than you burn through exercise, you will keep adding fat to your body, no matter how much of that fat is being utilized for energy. This can actually cause you to gain weight.

No matter what, a satisfactory ketogenic diet still seems to be a likely way to achieve weight loss and manage obesity.

2. Ketones Can Support Endurance Training

If you enjoy running, biking, or going on long strolls, entering into ketosis can be extremely advantageous for your vigor and exercise endurance.

A ketogenic diet combined with endurance training could be an ideal combination. This is due to the fact that by relying on fat or ketones, you can conserve more energy, meaning you don’t need to expend as much effort to obtain it, allowing you to maintain sustained physical activity. Fat is a very calorie-dense source of energy (providing twofold the amount of calories per gram than carbs) and is more easily stored by your body than other kinds of fuel, such as carbohydrates.

It is not unexpected that cyclists, runners, and other long-distance sportspeople have seen big advantages in using a ketogenic diet to enhance their sports performance. A study found that the body obtains 31% more energy from ketone bodies than from pyruvate created from glucose.

Nevertheless, when engaging in prolonged exercise, a ketogenic diet cannot serve as a substitute for necessary nutritional supplementation. Getting enough electrolytes, drinking adequate amounts of fluids, and having a proper calorie intake are all essential elements of endurance training, although the stored fuel will only take you a certain distance. If you are engaging in physical activity for longer than an hour and a half, then it is important to provide yourself with sustenance and nourishment.

Apart from that, for athletes who are in a competitive scene, diminished glycogen levels could obstruct the possibility of giving an extreme burst to the end line or struggle for that last effort.

3. Ketones May Support Brain Health

Ketones have the qualifications needed to pass through the blood-brain barrier, as well as its proven record of success in treating epilepsy in kids. Therefore, many view it as a potential aid to the health and function of the brain. Illnesses of the nervous system, such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, damage to the brain from an accident, and stroke, may all be helped by following the keto diet.

It is extremely important to remember not to assume that these early interpretations and connections imply causes or remedies. Research into the possible use of a ketogenic diet in treating various neurological disorders is limited and mainly comes from animal studies and trials which weren’t controlled in humans.

4. Increased Longevity

Ketones have been identified to bring about longevity-enhancing results much like those brought on by caloric limitation and not consuming food, which include keeping shielding amounts of NAD+ in cells.

NAD + is critical for vital cellular processes. Sirtuins are proteins in cells that have lifespan-extending properties. Sirtuins require NAD + to function properly.

In animal experiments, augmenting the body’s ketone levels has been proven to commence increased concentrations of NAD+ and to promote sirtuin performance. This minimizes harm to DNA, which has been connected with conditions and difficulties that come with aging.

In one study utilizing the roundworm C. elegans, which is frequently employed in research exploring longevity, adding beta-hydroxybutyrate to its diet raised the average lifespan by around 20%.

This effect has also been shown in mammals. In mice that are getting older, consuming food that increases ketone levels in the blood has been shown to extend life expectancy by around 14%. Even more importantly, ketones prolong healthy life, or healthspan.

Boost Ketones Without a Risky Diet

  • Ketones are compounds produced by the liver during times of fasting or extremely low carbohydrate intake.
  • Ketones are used as an alternative fuel by the brain and muscles. They also activate pathways linked to lifespan and health-span extension.
  • The ketogenic diet stimulates ketone production but requires extremely high fat intake that has harmful health consequences.
  • Safer alternatives directly supply ketones that can be absorbed and used by the body. Beta-hydroxybutyrate regulates energy expenditure and helps modulate metabolism. Mangiferin and a resistant starch also boost the body’s ability to make its own ketones.
  • It is now possible to obtain the benefits of ketones without the difficulties and downsides associated with prolonged fasting or the ketogenic diet.

Issues with the Ketogenic Diet

One way to increase ketones in the body is to encourage the body to manufacture more of them. That’s the goal of the popular ketogenic diet . Cutting down on carbohydrates drastically and replacing those calories with a large amount of fat causes the liver to produce ketones.

But there are several downsides to this strategy:

  • Eliminating carbs means dramatically reducing intake of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. These foods are a source of dietary fiber, which is critical for digestive health. Insufficient fiber has been linked to gastrointestinal disorders and colorectal cancer.
  • Very low carbohydrate intake has been linked to premature mortality.
  • A high-fat diet can cause elevated triglycerides, other lipid abnormalities, and detrimental metabolic changes, all risk factors for cardiovascular disease.
  • In people on a ketogenic diet, the risk of atherosclerotic plaque development in arteries, which often leads to cardiovascular disease, may be increased.
  • High-fat, low-carb diets can negate or even reverse the brain benefits of ketones, leading to deterioration in attention, processing speed, and mood.

The negatives of the ketogenic diet could be more important than the advantages. This is not advised for people unless they have been prescribed this specific treatment due to their medical condition.

Raise Ketones the Healthy Way

Researchers have recently attempted to devise a way to enhance ketone levels without the dangers linked to the ketogenic diet or abstaining from food for an extended period of time.

They achieved this result by blending the ketone beta-hydroxybutyrate with two different vitamins that help the body generate ketones.

When consumed as a drink, beta-hydroxybutyrate is readily absorbed into the bloodstream, providing similar benefits as the ketones generated by the liver. Blood levels of beta-hydroxybutyrate can be raised to the same level experienced from a ketogenic diet.

Mangiferin is a molecule that can be detected in plants, particularly mangos, which is why it has been named after this fruit. It has been demonstrated that it can stimulate the body to create more ketones.

Researchers proved through a random experiment that taking 150 mg of mangiferin each day considerably increased the number of ketones in the blood, most likely due to the liver accelerating the creation of them.

Beta-hydroxybutyrate levels were raised by almost 18% after taking mangiferin, and acetoacetate quantities rose by around 10%.

A complex carbohydrate such as cassava is a resistant starch which cannot be broken down by the digestive enzymes in our bodies easily.

Benefits of “Resistant Starch”

After having a meal, other types of starch are decomposed into more straightforward sugars, resulting in an increase in blood sugar leading to the emission of insulin.

Humans are not able to digest resistant starches quickly, meaning they cannot increase blood sugar levels or cause an insulin response.

Apart from supplying fiber, resistant starches also have a number of other positive effects. The consumption of these items aids in assisting beneficial bacteria in the gut to spread, gives a sense of satiety, raises the amount of insulin the body is able to process, and maintains the amount of lean muscle in the body.

Resistant starches increase the amount of butyrate the body generates, which assists with the generation of ketones, and further activates many of the same pathways that help extend lifespan like ketones do.


Ketones are an alternate energy source for our cells, and offer several benefits compared to glucose.

During fasting, the liver typically creates ketones, which are simpler and faster to transform than glucose and are a powerful source of energy for the brain and muscles.

They also trigger processes related to a longer, healthier life.

The two dominant methods of raising ketone levels are via extended abstention from food or a ketogenic eating regimen. Despite the potential benefits that a high fat ketogenic diet may offer, they can be risky, which would counter any advantages gained by having increased ketones in the body.

A safer substitute has been created by experts that delivers beneficial ketones directly and heightens the body’s capacity to form ketones. It achieves this without the negative implications associated with ketogenic diets.


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