Is it ketosis or just very low carbs which helps?

(David Cooke) #21

I think the “avoid fried foods” thing that turns up in food surveys has a lot to do with the use of seed oils.

(David Cooke) #22

I’m not sure that being in ketosis for years and years is necessary for most people. For me, it’s something I do periodically when I see my blood glucose rising, or my weight (otherwise low carb, <60 gm). I can imagine that some people DO need to be in ketosis for the rest of their life.

(Chuck) #23

I have to admit I don’t try to stay in ketosis, it is just seems to be my body’s response to the way I prefer to eat. I don’t have a blood sugar issue, but I do at times in my past had issues with being hyperglycemic. My grandmother was a type one diabetic, my mother was pre diabetic as is my sister. Two of my sister’s sons are hyperglycemic too. And my dad in his final year became diabetic because of radiation and chemotherapy treatments. Every time I have my lab results my blood sugar is at the very lowest end of the normal range. And that is normal after about 18 hours of fasting. I honestly don’t worry about my calorie intake or my carb intake anymore I have been doing this long enough to have a good mental understanding of what I am eating. My goals now is to stay off the prescription drugs, and to keep my blood pressure as close to normal as possible by way of my diet, mental health, and being physically active. My weight is finally starting to take care of itself. I am still considering overweight by the stupid charts. But I am 10 pounds below my military fighting weight. And if you research BMI recommendations that they now have I am right on for my age. My BMI is bouncing from 25.7-26, the latest recommended BMI for individuals over 65 is 26-28.9 which is the overweight range of the BMI chart for those under 65. I have to stay focused on my diet, my weight and my activities to keep my freedom from precipitation chemicals being forced upon my body.


You have a point but when “low enough” carbs for the one in question isn’t close to the personal ketosis carb limit, it can be separated (not like we know our ketosis carb limit in the beginning or maybe ever, it can change too).
Some people are thriving on mere low-carb and never even feel the need to go keto (I still think we can’t possibly know what benefits we get if we try :wink: I am glad I went very low to test things even if I had to wait many years to be able to do so for more than 1-2 days).
While others don’t get much benefits on keto but they get it when they go lower, avoid certain popular keto food items or food groups.

I noticed great changes around 80g net carbs (total never seemed to matter a thing) and at extreme low non-animal net carbs. Being in or out of ketosis between the two felt the same. So for me, it’s not ketosis, it’s other things. Carbs play a very important role, they should be kept pretty low but animal and total carbs don’t seem to matter. And if I go out of keto, I still should stay below 80g if comfortably possible… Nothing good awaits me higher.

(Brian) #25

I’m kinda trying to wrap my mind around the idea of isolating ketosis from very low carbs. If you’re eating very low carbs, you should be in ketosis most of the time.

One thing about the carnivore diet, most of that discussion goes away. You eat very simply, pretty much zero carb and are pretty much always in ketosis. It does away with a lot of diet micromanagement.

I am coming to the personal conclusion that not nearly as much veg is as good for me as has been promoted over the years. I still eat some but have gone from quite strict vegan about 10 years ago to heavy meat based (not quite carnivore but often keto and very low carb) having mostly left behind stuff like almond flour treats. Yeah, I do like a slab of tomato and/or some slices of dill pickles on my 1/2 pound hamburgers and I’m not sorry. But we have zero bread in the house, not even “keto friendly” so no bun. Heck, I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t even want the bun. Just give me the meat!


Many of us, that’s pretty much the difference between Keto and Atkins, with Atkins you’re doing exactly what Keto does either for 2wks or until the bulk of your fat loss goal is achieved, then you start adding in carbs one by one in a specific order to both find where the threshold is for you, and to identify what foods added back in don’t agree with you.


Nope. Most low carb eaters aren’t in ketosis often. Most will consider low carb up to around 100-150g, if you’re really active you could pull that off and still spend (some) time in ketosis, but it would be minimal. What’s very low carb is pretty subjective. With (very) in there, I’d say no more than 100g as for a normal eating that would be enough to make a noticeable dip in energy and how they feel vs eating SAD. Really depends on the individual. I do a TKD/CKD hybrid and usually around 100g, a huge chunk of that is fueling my workout, the rest goes towards glycogen replenishment post workout, so not a lot of net carbs left in the end, but if somebody was sedentary and did that, they’d still be low carb, but have very little chance of Ketosis either.

(Brian) #28

I guess this is where I have failed to understand because my high end of “low-carb” is about 50g. My high end of “very low carb” is more like 20g. To be honest, I don’t know where I got those numbers anymore as they’ve been floating around my head for so long.

I see your point. Thank you for clarifying numbers.

(Bacon enough and time) #29

It all has to do with how insulin-resistant or -sensitive someone is. The more insulin-sensitive, the more carbohydrate it is possible to eat and still keep insulin low enough to remain in ketosis. Whatever amount of glucose/carbohydrate someone eats, if it’s low enough to keep that person in ketosis, it’s a ketogenic diet–for that person.

(Chuck) #30

I do my best to keep my total carbs below 90 for the day, the carbs I consume are high fiber carbs so my net carbs are even lower. But from everything I have read and my experience, following total carbs is best for me to stay out of trouble.


I am trying to find my maintenance point, the point where I won’t continue to lose. Currently at 60 carbs, I still lose a few pounds a month. I’ll be moving that limit up to 80 now.

It’s kind of tricky because I sometimes eat twice and sometimes once, and some days I just graze. It all makes a difference. I don’t want to force a pattern though.

(Bob M) #32

I’m not so sure about that. I tried testing 100g of carbs after body weight training, and was still in ketosis. I then tried 100g the next day (not exercising) and was still in ketosis. (If “ketosis” = any blood ketones.) The main difference was the 100g after exercising was like I didn’t eat any carbs. I think my muscles sucked up the carbs. The day after, when I had 100g without exercise, I got tired, I got hungry, a lot of the bad effects of carbs came back.

It might be that I could eat 100g every day, but that test proved to me that carbs on the days I exercise are okay, but carbs on the days I don’t can be problematic. I also dropped my carb content after exercise to 50g, thinking I didn’t need 100g. I’m doing 50g only on the days I do body weight training, so 3 days a week. The two days I go jogging, I don’t up my carbs. So, 3 days with carbs and 4 days off.

It would be interesting to see if I could take the time and slowly ramp up carbs to see when I finally got “kicked out”. The problem might be, though, that I’m not a normal person. It’ll be 10 years of keto on 1/1/24. I wonder if that means my body “likes” ketosis now, and doesn’t want to get out?

(Bacon enough and time) #33

I find something similar. There is a level of carb intake at which I may still remain in ketosis, but the symptoms that keto relieved start to return: skin problems, arthritis, muscle aches, and so forth.


I heard about cases where people could eat 100g carbs and stay in ketosis, it makes sense if they are the ones who can afford more to begin with, they have more than average muscles and they do exercise… :smiley:

I don’t feel different in ketosis so it is impossible for me to tell now but there were signs in the beginning (especially my water weight changes but I lost them too) and I never seemed to be in ketosis at 50g. But 40g worked. My activity was lowish/moderate (IDK what is considered what, I would think 1 hour walk a day is minimal, I consider it below minimal, actually as it’s basically nothing, we just move a bit around as we should), never could test active times vs inactive ones as I don’t tend to have several such days in row…
And now I just can’t tell and it’s not even important for me. I am just curious about many things and wonder sometimes.

An interesting thought :smiley: How flexible is our ketosis carb limit and could long term keto shift it…? At least a bit, I wouldn’t think it can be altered very much but I don’t know, actually… It just would seem odd…

(Brian) #35

I feel like I’m having a sort of “DUH” moment on this one. I’m fascinated at how much the idea of “low carb” varies from person to person when quantifying it. I never really gave much thought to 100g to 150g of carbs being considered “low carb” but apparently, that’s considered low carb to some. When someone tells me they’re “low carb”, I generally think of them about about 10% to 15% of that which could be way off.

I definitely understand that different people will find the limits of carb intake to remain in ketosis at different places. I’m just fascinated at the use of the same word meaning significantly different things to different people.


In my country, low-=carb means up to 150-160g net carbs, it’s the advised diet for people with diabetes. So it’s my very general or common low-carb definition too. MY low-carb is how I did my low-carb diet, <80g net carbs. And if I just hear “low-carb” without enough context, I have no idea what it is for the person…
On keto forums I suppose they probably mean keto but it’s not always the case (I am an example. if I say “low-carb” when talking about my past woe, it’s my low-carb. if I eat 150g carbs, I say higher-carb or maybe high-carb as it may be considered low-carb by many, it’s a ton of carbs for me…).

It’s always grams for me. It just makes more sense to me, I understand very well if it’s percentages for someone. Not for me but that makes sense too as the diabetes limit is about grams, the keto one too, my old low-fat as well… The same with fat, if I eat <80g fat, that’s almost impossibly low, it’s my “low-fat” definition :smiley: Maybe not on a fat-fast, it’s weird to call 90% fat low-fat :smiley: But if it’s low… :smiley:
Same with protein, actually. But our protein need is in grams so it makes sense to me.

But when people consider 150-160g low-carb, they typically don’t have a moderate-carb definition. If it’s beyond 150-160g, it’s high-carb. We here probably have some more or less vague definition for moderate-carb. 100-150g is moderate for me, not low but I only heard about low and high for decades, never “moderate”.

(Eve) #37

My original question, splitting ketosis from veg intake was due to me personally not being sure if the benefits l was getting are due to the actual ketones themselves doing all those positive things in my body, or due to basically just eliminating an awful lot of the plant matter l had been eating. Equally, not eating any grains or legumes may have also been the reason for my symptom improvement. By cutting it all out, it put me into ketosis, but again, what was giving me the benefits? It has been like a very uncontrolled experiment where lots of variables have been removed and now l am trying to figure out which one or ones were responsible for the result! Either way, l am certain that l was eating loads too many carbs, and of that carb consumption, way too much fruit and veg. Through starting this WOE and subsequently joining this forum, l have learnt a tremendous amount and have had many deep seated beliefs overturned!!!


It is something one may test separately. I quit these on low-carb but I wasn’t in ketosis… I definitely felt better. But I cut off so many other things like sugar and overprocessed treats…

I had a gluten-free year, a lactose-free one too… But one can’t test everything separately for long…

And now I can test if a vegless higher-carb is OK as I almost never add back veg (beyond a really tiny amount I have anyway and don’t seem to matter). But I imagine it’s not what people normally do when I have some off keto days. And I come back so soon that I only can test for immediate changes.

And you can’t use other people’s experiences as we are too different. I know that simpler sugars aren’t good for me, starches either but I can handle them loads better and in bigger amounts. And animal sugars act like they wouldn’t be carbs while they are sugars… Meanwhile some people can eat veg sugars galore but a little lactose is a problem.

Yeah, you can’t know what was the important part if you just cut out a bunch of stuff. Cutting out a lot of sugar probably was one of them though :wink: Even my high-carber SO with a huge sweet tooth did that. He avoids added sugar and probably eats less fruit now but I don’t remember how much fruit he consumed 15 years ago, honestly… It’s a lot now but only from my viewpoint, not from a “normal” one :wink: And the horrible dietary guides probably consider him not eating enough fruit (like, 5 times a day, not like it’s an amount. he would resemble a ball if he ate 5 times a day especially fruits every time…)

(Brian) #39

I said that poorly and should not have mentioned percentages. I’ll try to clarify.

When I hear someone say “low-carb”, I’m NOT thinking 100g to 150g. I’m thinking more like 10g or maybe even pushin’ 25g (which is roughly 10% to 15% of 100g to 150g). I’ve never been smart enough to have macro percentages at my fingertips as in percentage of fat, percentage of protein, percentage of carbs.

My apologies.

I’m definitely getting a new perspective from the comments and I appreciate those who are filling me in on what “low-carb” means to them. I may have to be a little more careful about how I throw that term around myself.

(Chuck) #40

I call what I am doing is eating a moderately low carb diet, my definition of it is under 100 total carbs per day. And that would be my high carb days. My carbs are real food carbs no processed carbs. Vegetable, fruit carbs, I need the fiber, and if you dig deep enough and follow the net carbs theory then I do eat low carb. The research I find most helpful is the total carb camp. It is simply less confusing. And I eat heavier protein than fat normally. So definitely not keto most days.