Ketone Oblivious

(Robin) #1

Just curious… how many folks on here do not check their ketones? I never have. I’m of the mind set that as long as I am staying strict and in the zone and seeing the results, I’m good. Your thoughts?

(Bacon enough and time) #2

I never have.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #3

I have tested, BrAce (acetone) and urine (acetoacetate primarily). I have never tested blood (β-hydroxybutyrate) because I’m seriously averse to blood letting. I understand the limitations of both BrAce and urine testing. With that in mind, however, when I started testing I measured fairly high numbers, but those have decreased over time. Now (after 4 1/2 + years eating keto) I measure consistently very low numbers. What relationship that has to my fat adaptation I don’t know but am aware of the discussion about it.

I do have a concern about my overall level of ketones because β-hydroxybutyrate is an energy source, hormone and signalling molecule which in and of itself has many beneficial and healthful effects. Especially as one ages. Especially in the brain. At some point in time I will likely succumb to my concern and get a blood meter to check it out. Until then I continue to wonder what the numbers really are.

During my 4 1/2 years of keto I have remained consistently in ‘ketosis’. I don’t consider ‘strict’ ‘lazy’ ‘lax’ ‘dirty’ meaningful terms. You’re either in ketosis or not. I do get tired of my Ketonix telling me I’m in a ‘very low level of ketosis’. So I wonder whether ‘ketosis’ is the best terminology. Maybe something like ‘fat burning’ or ‘fat burner’ or something similar would be more accurate. Does ‘ketosis’ necessitate some minimum amount of ketones? I don’t know.

When I did my CGM experiment my glucose was consistently within the ‘normal/healthy’ range. I also wondered about that - why? Should I not expect ketones/fatty acids to replace most of the glucose? Is gluconeogenesis interfering with ketosis? I don’t know.

What is my RER? Based on what I eat I’d expect it to be .7 or only a little more (.71-.75 max). But getting it tested is difficult because few places do it, although I may have found one here in Vancouver. What if RER turns out to be .8 or higher? What happens to ‘ketosis’?

Personally, I think RER is more important than ketones. If I’m in a metabolic state where 75-90% plus energy is generated by fat - and ketones are what they are… That does not address my questions and concerns about β-hydroxybutyrate and the brain.

Anyway, in the interest of increasing general knowledge about keto, ketosis, fat adaptation, etc, I think testing ketones is valuable. “I feel good!” doesn’t really do it for me.

The only thing that doesn't make sense to me

I have no idea about my ketones, BS, blood pressure (at least I checked it a few times… but I usually got “error” :smiley: I just know it’s always low-ish but not horribly so) or anything about my blood. I don’t even have a doctor so haven’t the vaguest idea about my lipid stuff either. But they are good, I suppose, I was always a healthy one. Even though I wouldn’t mind any LDL, I am not the type who follows doctors, I usually run away from them (they are obsessed with putting my poor limbs into casts and I am against that barbaric method when there are way better ones if it’s just an arm. they are arrogant too and it doesn’t work with me. it’s my life so they don’t really have power there and if they don’t respect me, I don’t respect them).

But I carried away.

So, I don’t care about ketones. Or even being in ketosis (but that is easy for me and never was enough for anything beyond fat adaptation. I felt very close to zero noticeable benefits tied to ketosis itself until trying carnivore. fat adaptation benefits exist without ketosis too). I just want to feel good! But I need quite low-carb for that most of the time and I probably rarely go out of ketosis for long. But being in ketosis isn’t my actual goal. Just like I want a better body composition, smaller weight isn’t my goal, just inevitable for that. So I don’t care about ketones themselves. My body should know what it wants and need at this point, I am so experienced after more than a decade on low-carb (keto didn’t happen in the first years) and it nudges me if I do it wrong.

(Laurie) #5

I did, about 20 years ago while on Atkins. The pee strips were fun. But you had to find them, buy them, cut them in half to save money, etc. Now that I’m older I can’t be bothered. You also won’t find me taking any tests, scores, scans, and the like.

I’m oblivious but still alive, apparently.

(Carnivore for the win) #6

I didn’t for the first couple of years. I eventually bought a breath meter, just for fun, and use it every month or two. I enjoy seeing the number, but I don’t do anything with it, other than equate the ketone breath levels to how I feel at the moment.


Oh I couldn’t buy pee strips in a pharmacy in a city… So I gave up.

I play much enough with numbers anyway. I am curious so I try to track. Not like it’s reliable when one eat more than minimal amount of fatty meat with an unknown fat content…

(Butter Withaspoon) #8

I’ve never measured. One time last year I had a test for something else and my ketones came up as a red number (high) at 2pm after about 200g carbs the previous day. I had fasted overnight and skipped breakfast. From that point on I assumed that I get into ketosis easily, and remembered the sensation on my tongue. I use a tongue meter I guess :laughing:

(Doug) #9

Never have, but it would be interesting to see what happens over time, as during fasting or longer-term when eating very low or zero carbs.


Nope --not checking ever —I almost went there til I read an article about ‘why waste your money’ on it all but I also didn’t have that personality truly that cared about it, or put stock in it to be the end all to it all for me.

I did buy ketone strips about 1.5 yrs into carnivore and got barely pink and thought WTH? and then I read more about how ketones are produced and burned and there are more ketone factors than a strip ever would register during my changeover so I said…done deal…never looked back.

(Bacon enough and time) #11

Twenty years? But . . . but . . . keto is unsustainable and will kill you!



(Joey) #12

Initially, I checked daily, then every few days, then weekly, then once in a blue moon for experimental purposes, now I never check. Same with glucose levels.

I found it to be extremely interesting and I learned a lot about my body’s reaction to keto as a significant change in diet. All the while, I tracked everything eaten so I could understand macro-nutrients, calories, etc.

But then after a while there’s little left to learn.

So unless you’re deeply OCD, you tend to move on and stop gathering data that doesn’t inform action. I should apply that lesson to other data I tend to gather :wink:

(Robin) #13

What you’re describing is exactly the way I progressed away from the scales and tracking micros.

(Ohio ) #14

I’ve used 100’s of urine strips, until I got used to signs of fat adaption. I’ve been doing 100s of pull-ups a day since around then and noticed my arms get stiff when I inject too much carbs? Not painful or cramped. Just stiff, like I need to move. Get blood pumping.

Lots of urine strip hate on here, but I highly recommend them for someone starting on the ketogenic lifestyle. I’ll never buy anymore however.

(Jane) #15

I didn’t check ketones until I was about 6 months in and had lost 30 lbs.

I got a Keto Mojo and checked for a while out of curiosity. Now I only check when doing an EF. Again just curious. I don’t do anything different with the data so not necessary at all.

(Bacon enough and time) #16

We don’t really hate them. They’re fine for people starting out; it’s just that the body usually stops excreting very many ketones after a while. At that point some people freak out, because they think they’re doing something wrong. It’s the reason some of us never bother to check our ketones (hence the point of this thread, lol!).


In other words. Ketones excreted via urine is an indication that the cells aren’t using ketones as fuel.

I never have but I may be an outlier in the following. I seem to only produce ketones if I’m fasting. The Metallic taste started after not eating for 24 hours. I can eat fat all day and burn it as fuel and function normally but not experience the metallic taste.

(Robin) #18

Interesting. So many diverse experiences and approaches on this forum.

(Robin) #19

Such a wonderful explanation of what should become a natural way of responding to the messages we receive from our own bodies. Keto has taught me to listen and has helped me understand that food is like a conversation with my body. I am a much better listener now.

(KCKO, KCFO) #20

I do check via breath analyzer a few times a month. The pee strips I tried at first but they never registered more than slight trace and at the time I was dropping lbs. like crazy, so I don’t use them now.

I just depend on keeping my carbs mostly green and very low, meat as desired, and enjoy my fats. I am in my fourth year of maintenance so I must be doing something right.