The Science Behind Keto Diet Weight Loss: CAUTION: For Nerds ONLY!
Thank you to Amanda Fletcher, one of our fitness trainers here at ProCore Fitness in Southlake, TX for breaking down the science behind keto diet weight loss. Find out more than you may have ever wanted to know in this complete explanation of ketosis and the ketogenesis process. Read to the end to see how you can sign up for our Keto-Kickstart to put the science in motion.
What is Ketosis?
Ketosis is the metabolic state when blood ketone levels reach a certain level (around 0.5 mmol/L). People will typically enter ketosis when they restrict carbohydrates or eat little to no calories. The body will not enter ketosis as long as there are enough carbs available from the diet or stored glycogen (the storage form of sugar) to provide the cells with fuel. However, if the body is deprived of carbohydrates, the process of ketogenesis will be initiated by the liver to maintain energy levels.
How does the ketogenesis process work?
During the process of ketogenesis, fatty acids and ketogenic amino acids like lysine and leucine are converted into the ketone body acetoacetate. Acetoacetate is then converted into either beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) or acetone. As your cells adapt to carbohydrate restriction, BHB becomes the most prevalent ketone body and your brain and muscle cells start using it as their primary source of energy. In fact, when you are keto-adapted (after weeks of being in ketosis), you will reach such deep levels of ketosis that ketones will supply up to 50% of your basal energy requirements and 70% of your brain’s energy needs. This allows your body to preserve muscle mass and fuel the brain while you get the benefits of burning ketones for fuel. As a result of keto-adaptation, more mitochondria are formed in ketone burning cells, and the existing mitochondria in those cells become more efficient by up-regulating enzymes that help with ketone metabolism. These changes also make it easier for the body to get back into ketosis after carbohydrate re-feeding.
How does a keto diet help us lose weight?
From a health perspective, ketones have been found to have many unique properties that sugar can not emulate.
- Ketones burn much more efficiently than sugar, providing us with a more efficient source of energy while forming less reactive oxygen substrates.
- Ketones also increase mitochondrial efficiency and production, which improves the ability of ketone burning cells to produce energy and resist aging.
- Studies have also found ketones to be a neuroprotective antioxidant that can help reverse and prevent brain damage while triggering the proliferation of new brain cells and new connections between existing brain cells.
- As a result of burning ketones, ketones help prevent excessive neuronal activity that can cause uncontrollable behaviors that are common in neurological disorders like epilepsy, autism, and Parkinson’s disease.
Keto Diet Weight Loss Superior to Low-Fat Diets
From a health perspective, there is strong evidence that ketogenic diets are very effective for weight loss. They can help you lose fat, preserve muscle mass and improve many markers of disease. In fact, many studies have compared the recommended low-fat diet to a ketogenic diet for weight loss. Findings often show the ketogenic diet to be superior, even when total calorie intake is matched. In one study, people on a ketogenic diet lost 2.2 times more weight than those on a low-calorie, low-fat diet. Triglyceride and HDL cholesterol levels also improved.
If you’re interested in learning more about a Ketogenic diet or participating in our upcoming Keto-Kickstart submit your information and we’ll reach out to you shortly or call us now at the number below.
Amanda Fletcher | ProCore Fitness | Keto Diet Weight Loss Southlake TX | 817-809-2100