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  • ketone bodies

    i ve been researching the brain and its fuel. My understanding is that if you starve yourself, thats when your body uses ketone bodies. However; you have to starve yourself for 3 days? I've also discovered that your body needs to break down some muscle tissue in order to produce enough ketone bodies to fuel your brain. Any thoughts on this?

  • #2
    Originally posted by Kingofturtles View Post
    i ve been researching the brain and its fuel. My understanding is that if you starve yourself, thats when your body uses ketone bodies.
    It would. But ketogenic diets were used traditionally for epileptics, and have some other applications. The people are obviously fed -- just not quite what the rest of us tend to eat.

    However; you have to starve yourself for 3 days? I've also discovered that your body needs to break down some muscle tissue in order to produce enough ketone bodies to fuel your brain. Any thoughts on this?
    Well, the brain would initially use glucose: that would be made from protein by a process of gluconeogensis. That could come from your muscles, specially if you were starving yourself. Obviously, that's not recommended.

    The usual route would rather be a high-fat and very low-carb diet with adequate protein to maintain muscle-mass. But it takes some time. Whether it's needful for anyone who doesn't have some special medical problem, such as epilepsy is another matter ...

    I tried to find something online on keto-adaptation. This looks like it would relevant, but I haven't heard it yet:

    Steve Phinney and Richard Johnson: Ketones, Uric Acid, High Fat and Health | Me and My Diabetes

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    • #3
      You need to do more research....starving yourself isn't the only reason the brain uses ketones. Just type ketosis in google and start reading.

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      • #4
        24 hours to ketosis in 2 easy steps:
        1. Water fast for 24 hours to draw down glycogen stores.
        2. Eat about 75% of your calories in the form of medium chain triglycerides (MCT oil), the rest from proteins, keep carbs below 50g


        Expect rampant nausea and probably vomiting because a lot of people do not tolerate MCT oil well, but bask in the violet glow from your ketostix... You could try coconut oil as an alternative, it's mostly medium chain fatty acids, but the odds that you would tolerate that any better are quite low.

        Ketosis as an end unto itself is probably a bad idea, but, whatever floats your boat.

        Lastly, your body will never undergo proteolysis to produce ketone bodies. Ketones are a byproduct of fat metabolism, which is why you are cramming yourself full of MCTs in step 2 above. You can achieve the same effect by simply not eating, of course, at which point the fat that you are metabolizing is from your adipose tissue, but you seem concerned about that. Your body will undergo proteolysis to feed amino acids to the hepatic gluconeogenesis pathway to produce glucose. In terms of starvation, this occurs roughly on day two, and by day three, you are a full bore protein preserving, fat burning, ketone producing machine.

        -PK

        P.S. This book will pretty much tell you everything you ever wanted to know about ketosis.
        My blog : cogitoergoedo.com

        Interested in Intermittent Fasting? This might help: part 1, part 2, part 3.

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        • #5
          I am obviously missing something here because it seems the ketosis is bad. People tell me that I am starving my brain by not eating carbs because carbs are glucos and glucos feeds your brain. My reply is always that glucos is also made from fats and proteins, and ketone bodies also fuel the brain, but you need to be in ketosis before you create ketone bodies dont you?

          I also dont buy "you brain only uses 120mg and ur body produces 150mg" cause your brain isnt the only thing in your body that uses glucos...

          thx

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Kingofturtles View Post
            I am obviously missing something here because it seems the ketosis is bad. People tell me that I am starving my brain by not eating carbs because carbs are glucos and glucos feeds your brain. My reply is always that glucos is also made from fats and proteins, and ketone bodies also fuel the brain, but you need to be in ketosis before you create ketone bodies dont you?

            I also dont buy "you brain only uses 120mg and ur body produces 150mg" cause your brain isnt the only thing in your body that uses glucos...

            thx
            Yeah, your missing some things. That book pklopp linked would be a good read for you if you are really interested. Or you could also read some of this blog Peter Attia | War on Insulin

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            • #7
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              • #8
                Originally posted by Kingofturtles View Post
                I am obviously missing something here because it seems the ketosis is bad. People tell me that I am starving my brain by not eating carbs because carbs are glucos and glucos feeds your brain. My reply is always that glucos is also made from fats and proteins, and ketone bodies also fuel the brain, but you need to be in ketosis before you create ketone bodies dont you?

                I also dont buy "you brain only uses 120mg and ur body produces 150mg" cause your brain isnt the only thing in your body that uses glucos...

                thx
                Your Brain On Ketones | Psychology Today

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                • #9
                  As a person who has epilepsy, I found that article to be very interesting and helpful. Thank you, js290.

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