What are ketones? According to the Diabetes Teaching Center at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), ketones are defined as: “are alternative fuels for the body that are made when glucose is in short supply. They are made in the liver from the breakdown of fats.” They also serve as an energy source to the brain, muscles and some organs.
Why Are Ketones Important?
So what are ketones and why are they important? Maybe you have heard of the keto diet, which has been circulating the internet for years now promoting weight loss. Once you have elevated ketones, it becomes ketosis—which is when you’re burning off fat. Even though it became popular from people losing weight, the keto diet became popular due to preventing seizures for those who have epilepsy.
Types of Ketones
Not to make things more complicated but there are three types of ketones. What are the three types of ketones? There’s the body β-hydroxybutyrate (BHB)(measured by blood), acetoacetate (measured by urine), and acetone (measured by breath) ketones. It is suggested that if you don’t have to be measured for a health condition—you should not worry about your levels. Also, you do not need to take pills or any sort of drink that promotes elevating ketones. As long as you’re getting the right macros, you should be getting enough ketones. If you’re concerned, you can always talk to a certified nutritionist.
Unless you have one of the specified reasons to go on a keto diet, it’s most likely not necessary. Unless you want to eat a low carb, high fat/protein diet. You should always consult with your physician first!