One of the most trending diets these days is the ketogenic diet, are you aware of how this diet works and why it became very famous today? Actually, the ketogenic diet is very different from typical diets that we are used to, where most of the time the consumption of fats is restricted. It is the other way around for the ketogenic diet since it solely depends on the fat intake of the individual to use them for the weight loss procedure that is about to happen. From the fats, a new substance is produced and they are called ketones. These ketones are really useful as they are the main contributor to the ketogenic diet, which so far has been claimed as a very effective diet that is done by a lot of people all around the world.
However, there has been a lot of inaccurate information when it comes to how ketones work in the body. But always remember that if ketones are really dangerous, the ketogenic diet should have been banned a long time ago already. Although too much of the ketones may also be unhealthy at times, the main purpose of the production of ketones will be found as you continue reading this article.
What Are Ketones
Called originally as ketone bodies but shortened as ketones, these byproducts are manufactured in the body and is the result of the breaking down of fats when the carbohydrate content is low. The reason this happens is because normally, the body uses the carbohydrates (such as sugar) that we consume to convert them into energy; but since the keto diet limits the intake of carbs, the body must find another way of getting energy sources and that is where the fats consumed during the diet work their magic. As the fats are processed in exchange for the carbs, the ketone bodies are produced and are then serving as a fuel source that gives the body the energy it needs for other functions. When noticing how ketones are celebrated by the body when it is made into energy, it can be said that ketones are indeed important and they have their own unique purpose as they are produced.
Here are different ways of how the body is able to produce the ketones:
The human body is made of different components and they all have their own specific purposes. However, it is also wonderfully made and intelligent in such a way that when something lacks, high chances are there is a possible alternative to make way for the shortage. This exact scenario is applicable to ketones. First of all, there are cases when the glucose level in the body is insufficient; but this glucose is important since it is the main source of energy for the body. When this happens, the body will be able to detect the shortage and will look for another way to supply energy by using the stored fats instead; and that is when the ketones are produced afterward.
There are more instances and situations depending on the individual’s lifestyle that can aid in the production of ketones in the body. For one, this happens when the person is currently in the process of fasting; and the others are after undergoing heavy physical exercise and training, those who are starving are commonly producing ketones in their bodies, and when lacking carbohydrates in the diet.
Specifically, the ketogenic diet is designed for this purpose. The food intake in the diet is composed of low carbohydrates and high fats, which are the main players in the production of ketones. The fats are even added to the body so there will be more ketones produced which will be able to give back the energy lost from the low level of carbohydrates. Therefore, the energy is the same but there is an additional benefit of losing weight in the process.
Did you know that there is actually a term for the production and substitution of ketones? Once the fats are broken down and converted to ketones for energy, it is called beta-oxidation. And when beta-oxidation is occurring inside the body and the converted fatty acids are officially the fuel source for the whole body (that includes the brain), the individual is finally in the state of ketosis.
Did you know that there are three exact types of ketones?
Yes, there are different types of ketones and they are categorized into three names which are: acetoacetate (AcAc), beta-hydroxybutyric acid (BHB), and acetone. Have you heard any of these names before? If you did, it may be the beta-hydroxybutyric acid because it is a known ingredient for most keto-assisting supplements.
The three types of ketones are actually derivable of each other, in which the acetoacetate is the very first byproduct of the ketogenesis process (almost similar to beta-oxidation but more specific). After the acetoacetate is made, another ketone is produced and this is called the beta-hydroxybutyric acid. Acetone, on the other hand, when compared to the first two ketones it is actually less used. The acetone is also derived from acetoacetate, wherein it is produced as the latter’s side product.
When it comes to energy transportation that takes place from the liver to tissues, it is both the beta-hydroxybutyric acid and acetoacetate that are responsible for this. For the acetone, since it is not used usually in the process (or in any other) except when it is needed to be transformed into energy, it turns into a waste product that the body can excrete in different forms like urine or breathing out carbon dioxide wherein the acetone is mixed with the breath.
The Use Of Ketones For The Body
What makes ketones good is that they become the fuel source of the body even without the help of carbohydrates. This is really helpful to people who do not get to eat frequently, which means they can still have adequate amounts of energy thanks to the storage of fats in their bodies which in turn were converted to ketones. Also, since fatty acids are able to be stored in the body in case they will be needed, they act as the last resort when all the other sources are gone. For example, a person who loves working out would probably have exhausted all their energy sources from the recent meal they ate; so where will the body get more energy if those are already unavailable? That’s right, fatty acids and ketones.