Will Outsourcing Ketones Blunt Your Fat Loss Progress?
by Matt Cooper and Chris Albert of Warrior Soul Agoge.
Fat and ketones are the performance enhancing substances of the keto world. We’re learning more and more everyday about the effects that high blood ketone levels can have on athletic performance in oxidative-dominant sports (fat-fueled) like in this landmark study by Jeff Volek and his team studying ultra endurance runners.
This, in turn, has led to the creation of some amazing products like ketone salts and high quality MCT oils. These are both products that rapidly convert to ketones in the blood stream. They can make you more mentally clear and they can boost your energy levels.
While leaner keto practitioners and athletes can definitely benefit from using MCT oil and ketone salts regularly, those seeking to rid themselves of excess fat should only use these products sparingly.
To understand why takes some understanding of fat loss and ketosis.
Natural ketosis occurs when fat gets mobilized out of its cell and into the blood stream. In order for this to happen, there can’t be any other readily available sources of energy in the bloodstream. That’s why most of us require a 5-10 day adaptation phase to get into ketosis, so that our bodies can switch from using glucose as fuel to ketones.
Adrian is someone whom a variation of keto worked incredibly well for. As he got leaner and his insulin signalling restored, we were able to dose carbs and ketone-producing/containing products more liberally.
But just as eating enough glucose can kick you out of ketosis, introducing a bunch of ketones from an outside source only induces an artificial ketosis. Essentially, you’re bringing in excess energy for the body to burn off rather than encouraging it to mobilize the stored energy in your fat cells.
Hence, over consuming MCT oil and using exogenous ketones when you’re trying to burn fat can throw a huge wrench into your fat loss efforts even if it does make you feel good.
I am a fan of quality ketone salts (there are only a couple, like Ketosports and Kegenix) for athletes and even bodybuilders who are looking for a fantastic pre workout, but if you’re overweight and seeking to lose fat your should not be using these until you’ve seen some fat loss success. It should be noted that real exogenous ketones do have a phenomenal effect on mitochondrial health-the cellular energy function that fuels all of your body's processes. Because our model is that health drives performance, your regimen should support cell function to performance whether you're an athlete or individual.
Mario is an endurance athlete I train and do nutrition programming for whom has done quite well dosing exogenous ketones for performance.
MCT oil can be used sparingly at the beginning to help ease the energy deficit of keto-adaptation, but should not be used throughout the day if you are excessively overweight. The same goes for exogenous ketones on truly intense training days.
If you are looking for some accessory supplements you can add to the fundamentals that can enhance your own fat mobilization look for the following:
acetyl l-carnitine - this amino acid helps with mobilizing stored fat. You can take this pre-workout to help generate ketones from your fat stores.
n-acetyle cysteine - NAC helps to replenish glutathione levels in the body, reduces inflammation, and can help to enhance liver function. Your liver has a huge role in converting fatty acids into ketones.
Click the image to order Kegenix Prime.
It should be noted that dialing in your foundational supplements-things like a high-grade omega-3-dominant fish oil, vitamin D, probiotics, electrolyte/mineral blends, etc. will actually net you MORE results than so-called fat loss supplements. Furthermore, exogenous ketones are a phenomenal tool for cellular health, energy, focus, performance in endurance sports, and in medical applications as a metabolic therapy.
If you would like to review your supplements and get something tailored to your unique needs, be it wellness, fitness, or athletic performance, book a health & nutrition consultation below.