Today on the Ask Prof Noakes Podcast we discuss ketosis and the role it plays on the LCHF diet. Is it vital to be in a state of ketosis in order to get the full benefits of the Low Carb High Fat/Banting diet?
The simple answer is no you do not. To be in complete ketosis is hard to achieve, and you also don’t need to be in this state to benefit from the LCHF diet.
Ketosis is a metabolic state where most of the body’s energy supply comes from ketone bodies in the blood. This is in contrast to a state of glycolysis where blood glucose provides most of the energy.
What is Ketosis and what role does it play
During the usual overnight fast the body’s metabolism naturally switches into ketosis, and will switch back to glycolysis after a carbohydrate-rich meal. Part of the benefit of Low Carb High Fat diets is that you reduce the amount of carbohydrate from your system, thus forcing the body to use fat and not glucose for energy. For this reason ketosis is sometimes referred to as the body’s “fat burning” mode.
The ketogenic diet is a high-fat, adequate-protein, low-carbohydrate diet that in medicine is used primarily to treat difficult-to-control (refractory) epilepsy in children. It is very extreme, even by the LCHF diets standards.
Ketosis is not required
For this reason, unless you are looking to use it to treat epilepsy, it really isn’t required and shouldn’t be a diet you should look at. You don’t need to be in a permanent state of ketosis.