Exogenous Ketones vs Nutritional Ketosis

Transformation Trainer_Exogenousis vs Nutritional2

I’ve had several clients ask me about the difference between nutritional ketones vs exogenous recently, so I decided I’d do a blog post about them and try to clear things up for everyone.

Exogenous simply refers to something that is not produced by the body, but is brought into the body from outside sources. For instance, your multi-vitamin, your protein shakes and any prescriptions you take are all exogenous. On the other hand, something created in the body is referred to as endogenous. If we apply that to ketosis it means that when you’re following a ketogenic diet (low carb, moderate protein, high fat) and your body transitions from burning glucose to burning fat for fuel, ketones are then endogenously produced in your liver.

So why take exogenus ketones? Well, some people are mislead to believe that they can have the benefits of being in ketosis without having to follow the carbohydrate restrictions that come with a ketogenic diet (as usual, when I use the word diet I am simply referring to nutritional intake, not any type of fad diet). Some people, again mislead, use them as a buffer in addition to eating a ketogenic diet, to ensure they stay in ketosis if they go over their net carbs here and there. There is all kinds of hype and vague weight loss promises surrounding them online.

In my humble opinion, there are really only two reasons to use exogenous ketones. The first is for those people who are athletes, who are already keto adapted (been following a ketogenic lifestyle for 2-3 months) and want to increase energy for peak performance. The second, is after reading some promising research, shows that they are helpful to those suffering from Alzheimer’s, as well as those who have epilepsy. However, more research needed.

Okay, so back to the first group of people I mentioned who take exogenous ketones; those who think they can eat as they always have, drink the magic ketones and all will be well…yeah no, that’s not how it works. See, exogenous ketones only stay in your system for 3-6 hours, and even then…you’ve still got all the glucose running around in your system because you haven’t changed how you eat. Wanna know what happens to glucose that isn’t immediately used for energy? Once a sufficient amount (about 1,500-2,000 calories worth) has been stored in your muscles and liver (which changes the name from glucose to glycogen), any excess is stored AS FAT! So drinking these ketones will NOT put you into a state of ketosis, period. You have to enter ketosis via your nutritional intake. That’s why it’s called nutritional ketosis. This same explanation applies to those who use exogenous ketones to “stay in ketosis” when they go over their carbs, too. Nope. It’s like any other nutritional plan. Either you eat the right way, hit your workouts, drink your water, get all your sleep, etc., etc., etc. or you don’t. Our bodies are SO SMART! You can’t trick them. Honestly, as always, it all starts with the food you put into your mouth.

Listen closely to what I’m about to say:  THERE IS NO MAGIC PILL, DRINK OR CONCOCTION. That includes exogenous ketones. There is only hard work, dedication and consistency. You want results? Great! Go hire a trainer for guidance (I’ve got some great session times open), get out there and go get the results you want so badly! But be prepared to work for it, because like my Dad always used to say…..Anything worth having is worth working your ass off for!

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