Okay so I’m a newbie, (obviously) & I use urine strips to test my levels. Basically since I started testing my levels they’ve been consistently high. Like between 8 & 16+. It seems like I’ve read the whole internet by now but I have so many questions.
1.) Why are my levels so high?
2.) Am I at risk for ketoacidosis because of this?
3.) What can I do to lower my levels without dropping out of ketosis?
4.) Should I be testing my blood sugar? (I’m not diabetic)

I’ve felt perfectly fine but minor paranoia is happening cause I don’t want to drop dead or something. #Halp

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #2

Urine test strips are measuring wasted ketones (primarily acetoacetate). As a newbie you can expect to excrete and exhale lots of ketones simply because the cells and organs of your body don’t know what to do with it yet and your liver overproduces it. Don’t worry. Lots of folks think urine strips are totally useless. I don’t, but their usefulness is limited. Unless you have diabetes you are at no risk of ketoacidosis.


Thank you! :slightly_smiling_face::raised_hands:

(Give me bacon, or give me death.) #4
  1. You don’t actually know how high your ketones really are, because of inherent inaccuracy of the strips, for one thing.

  2. If you are a Type I diabetic, then yes, but you already knew that. If you are not a Type I diabetic, then as long as your pancreas continues to make insulin, you will be fine.

  3. Don’t worry about it. If you are seriously concerned, buy another batch of strips and see if you get the same results. It wouldn’t be the first time someone has encountered a batch of faulty strips. It’s not time to worry unless a separate batch of strips gives the same high reading. Or you could cross-check by getting a blood ketone meter. Unless you are a Type I diabetic, you can raise your insulin by eating some glucose, in the form of carbohydrates. And raising your insulin high enough will shut down ketogenesis in your liver.

  4. The same meter can usually measure both serum glucose and serum β-hydroxybutyrate; it just needs separate strips. I believe the glucose strips are cheaper than the ketone strips. But the same caveat about inaccuracies of measurement still applies.

I do have to note that it is possible to develop Type I diabetes at any age, so if you notice a sweet taste to your perspiration or your urine, get to your doctor right away and get tested for Type I diabetes. If your pancreas is no longer making insulin, diabetic ketoacidosis is indeed a possibility. The good news in such a situation, however, would be that a ketogenic diet helps regulate serum glucose pretty tightly, making errors in insulin dosing much less likely to have serious consequences.


Thanks for that! :smile: @PaulL
What do you recommend I do/use to accurately test my levels? (I have no idea how the pros do it) I’m just starting up. & I know the strips aren’t faulty because every one is consistent for me but when I have others use them they show up negative.

& About turning diabetic… I’m relatively young still & I’ve felt fine throughout this process of nixxing sugar/carbs. If for some reason I did develop diabetes, wouldn’t I notice it?


In order

  1. Because you’re not fat adapted and pissing out more ketones than you’re burning for fuel
  2. No
  3. Nothing
  4. No need to, you know you’re not eating in a way that raises blood sugar

Don’t overthink it! It’s easy to, but don’t.


Thanks! (:

(Bob M) #8

I stopped testing using strips years ago. That was because I was also testing using blood and breath, and the strips often said zero ketones while the other two said high(er) ketones.

So, if you keep using the strips and know you’ve been eating few carbs, but start getting low or no ketones on the strips, don’t get too concerned.


Thanks! @ctviggen :smiley:

(Give me bacon, or give me death.) #10

A meter that measures the level of β-hydroxybutyrate in your blood serum is considered the most accurate indicator of ketosis. But I have to warn you the strips are not cheap. Most meters are capable of measuring serum glucose, as well, by using a different strip.

Not necessarily. Metabolic damage accumulates over a period of years, and a lot of people learn that they are Type II diabetics only when their serum glucose gets out of control. But almost all of them were noticeably insulin-resistant for years or even decades prior to diagnosis.

Type I diabetes is hard to miss, though, since you will be continually thirsty and craving sugar, as well as wasting away. Go to YouTube and search on the name Troy Stapleton, for the experience of someone who suddenly became Type I diabetic at age 40. He is an Australian radiologist and, being a doctor, recognised the symptoms right away, but he talks about what to look for.

Type I diabetes is an autoimmune disease, in which the body kills off the insulin-secreting cells of the pancreas. Type II diabetes is the result of metabolic damage. Type III diabetes is metabolic damage to the brain, and is better-known as Alzheimer’s disease.


Thanks so much for that information! I will definitely follow up on that! :raised_hands: