5 big keto lies you need to know
By Thomas DeLauer
While ketosis is gaining popularity very quickly, it‚Äôs easy to get caught up with some of the biggest keto lies. HYLETE Community Captain, Thomas DeLauer, provides some solid evidence and science to clear up some of the biggest lies out there.
Not sure if ketosis is for you? Head over to watch Thomas' video on Ketosis and Fasting.
About Thomas DeLauer
From 280 lbs. to the magazine covers... All by living a lifestyle that is honest and real. Thomas DeLauer brings nutrition expertise along with a unique perspective on health and wellness that is everything HYLETE.
The following is a transcription of the above video:
The more that keto gains popularity, the more that the keto liars, the keto shammers, and everyone just comes out of the woodwork. So what I want to do in this video is I want to break down four really big keto lies, okay?
I'm not talking like keto myths or keto misconceptions. There's like hundreds of those videos on YouTube, and honestly, they're not that exciting. This video is talking about lies, things that are starting to come out for people that are already on the ketogenic diet. So we're talking about maybe some products or supplements that people are honestly people are capitalizing or taking advantage of people that are on the ketogenic craze right now. But also talking about just advice, poor advice that people are giving to people that are on the keto diet. So I'm not trying to justify the keto diet or anything or that. All I'm trying to do is give solid, solid evidence and science to clear up some of these common lies.
All right, let's get into the science. First one that I want to talk about is a supplement, okay? Now I don't usually talk about supplements a whole lot on my channel, but this particular one has been crowding my Facebook newsfeed a lot lately, so I figure it's a good one to talk about. You see, it's called 7-keto. Now 7-keto isn't the name of the brand, 7-keto is literally the type of product that it is. What 7-keto is, is it's one of three oxidized metabolites of DHEA.
Now let me just break this down really simple. 7-keto, even though it has the word keto in it, is not keto at all, has nothing to do with ketosis. What's going on is marketers and supplement companies are capitalizing on the fact that they already have keto in the name, and they're marketing it to people that are doing ketosis. So if you see it floating around on Facebook, you see it on your newsfeed, don't think that it's legitimately a keto product. It's not.
Let me explain what it does. You see, DHEA is produced by the adrenal glands, and it helps with testosterone production and all these other cool hormonal things within the body. What 7-keto is, is it's a specific derivative of DHEA that doesn't have the sex hormone effect. So basically, it doesn't affect estrogen, it doesn't affect testosterone. It works on three specific enzymes that have to do with thermogenesis. So in this case, we're talking about acetyl coenzyme A, we're talking about the malic enzyme, and we're talking about glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase enzymes. Okay, these three enzymes together do actually increase thermogenesis, which is a great thing, but again, it doesn't really have anything to do with keto.
So there was a study that was published in Current Therapeutic Research, and it took a look at subjects that consumed 7-keto with a calorie-restricted diet or those that didn't consume 7-keto. Actually, those that took 7-keto did lose more weight than those than didn't. But again, it went through a different enzymatic pathway that has nothing to do with ketosis.
So let's move into the next one. Carbs pre-workout. All right, people that are on the ketogenic diet are consistently told that they should have some carbs pre-workout if they work out a lot, that it's going to give them an extra boost of energy, and it's going to heighten their ketogenic lifestyle, and it's going to heighten their performance and their fat loss. Guys, that's not true at all. Okay, if anything, you could have a few grams of carbs after your workout. But if you're having carbs pre-workout, all that that's doing is going to the front of the line in front of ketones, which means that you're going to actually stop the fat-burning effect and temporarily burn glucose.
But let me reference a really awesome study that puts things into complete perspective here. So the journal Metabolism published a study that took a look at two different groups of people, those that were on a low-carb diet for 20 months, and those that were on a high-carb diet for 20 months. So these were tested for a very long time, at that point being very keto adaptive for those that were on the low-carb diet. Then what they did is they measured their overall carb utilization and glycogen stores after a workout.
Okay, here's what interesting. So they found that both groups ended up using the same amount of glycogen, the stored carbohydrates in your muscles, whether they were on a low-carb diet or not. They both used the same amount of carbs. How is that even possible? They also found they both restored the same amount of glycogen after the workout. What? How is that even possible? Okay, but get this. They also found that the low-carb group burned 2.3 times more fat during their exercise than the high-carb group. So the low-carb group burned fat and burned carbs. That's crazy. How does this actually work?
Well, believe it or not, what ends up happening is when you're on a ketogenic diet, your body acquires the ability to really rev up and utilize lactate as an energy source. So basically, lactate is a byproduct of exercise, and it goes through a process known as lactate glyconeogenesis or the Cori cycle. Okay, this particular cycle is very complex, but basically what's happening is it's taking the exhaust from your workout and it's re-feeding it back into a cycle to create energy. It literally is like taking exhaust from your car and shoving it back into your intake manifold and magically creating energy and running off your own exhaust.
When you're on a ketogenic diet, your body and your liver has the ability to do that, meaning it literally takes the exhaust and turns it into glucose, sugar, for fuel. So you use both ketones and sugar for fuel when you're on a ketogenic diet, meaning you don't need carbs ingested before a workout. They're already magically there created from your exhaust. How freaking cool is that? So the short answer is, you don't need carbs pre-workout. If anything, you could have a few grams of carbs post-workout, and that might help you out a little bit. But honestly, it's not even that necessary.
So now, let's move into the next one. Okay, when you're on a keto diet, people are going to lie to you and they're going to tell you that you should be eating all kinds of fatty cuts of meat. Honestly, that's people's just insecurity tapping in right there. Okay, they're just like, they want to eat these fatty cuts of meats, so they justify them constantly, right? So they're just like, ""Oh, I want to eat this. I want to consume this.""
The reality is, no, you still need to exercise restraint and some control. If you eat the fatty cuts of meat, you have no idea where the fats are coming from, okay? You weren't there with that cow, you weren't there with that pig. You don't know what it was eating and what it is actually made up of. And all those toxins, everything is stored up in the fat. You want to go with the leaner cuts of meat whenever possible. You don't want to just binge out on all these high fat cuts of meat, because you can get the fats in. That's how you're going to end up feeling like garbage 60 or 90 days from now and want to end up quitting keto. Honestly, it's not because you're abstaining from carbs and you're tired of carbs. It's because you're hitting that wall, and you're hitting that omega-6, omega-3 imbalance that's making you feel really, really cruddy.
So studies have shown that not only are grass-fed, grass-finished cuts of meat significantly leaner, but they're very, very high in omega-3s. A study that was published in Nutrition Journal found that grass-fed, grass-finished cuts of meat on average had two to five times more omega-3s than the counterparts that were not grass-fed, grass-finished. Okay, of course, in conjunction with already being leaner. So grass-fed, grass-finished, you get leaner, and then you also get higher quality. Leaner cuts of meat mean that you can add the fats additionally how you want to add them and not have to rely on the ambiguous sort of mystery of what that animal ate.
All right, now getting into the next one, urine test strips. Guys, these urine keto test strips were cool like a decade ago before keto was even popular, because not that many people used them and it was just kind of just a thing. Well, the reality is, now as keto's getting popular, more and more people are white labeling little keto test strips that are urine strips. Costs them like $2 to make, and they turn around, they sell them for $20. Everyone's just making a quick buck on Amazon. The reality is, these urine test strips are garbage, okay? All they do is test levels of acetoacetate. And that's only going to help you out when you're first starting in keto.
Let me explain what happens. When you first start keto, you have an excess of ketones. Your body doesn't know how to regulate it or modulate it yet. So it's producing a bunch of them, so you excrete a bunch of them, 'cause you're not using all of them. Well, guess what? Acetoacetate is what we're measuring with the urine test strips. You're going to show a lot of ketones in the beginning, because your body hasn't gotten the process down. So you're like super excited. Day five, day six, you're like, ""I have so many ketones.""
Then two weeks go by, three weeks go by of being strict with keto, and all of a sudden, you're not registering on the keto strip anymore. And you're so upset, you're so frustrated. You think you're doing something wrong. Well, the reality is, no, your body's just gotten efficient. Your body has developed the process to utilize ketones properly so you don't have excess ketones anymore. So you don't want to fall victim to buying those keto test strips for that very reason.
Additionally, what you need to know is that once you get into keto, you might find that your ketone levels overall drop the longer that you're on ketosis, because your body stops using ketones and actually develops the ability to burn fat directly. Literally develops the ability to burn fat directly without having to go through the ketone step. So the ketones are only created for the cells that actually want the ketones, like the brain cells. So even if you're testing your blood, you might find that your ketone levels come down after a few months of being on keto.
Now, here's an interesting study that puts things into perspective for those data nerds that are out there. This study was published in the Journal of Metabolism: Clinical and Experimental, okay? It took a look at the renal reabsorption rate of acetoacetate. Now, renal reabsorption simply means how much is reabsorbed from the kidneys back into the blood. So they found that test subjects that were in ketosis had, on average, 47 mmol of acetoacetate reabsorbed from their kidneys, okay? So after three days, they had 47 mmol reabsorbing from the kidneys back into the bloodstream. After 10 days, the average reabsorption was 106 mmol, showing that the body wasn't excreting it, it was reabsorbing them and using them, literally just after 10 days. Honestly, that's just a little bit of proof there.
And here's a quick bonus one for you that I want to make sure that I leave in here. Raspberry ketones. Guys, raspberry ketones have nothing to do with ketosis whatsoever. There was like one study with rats that showed that raspberry ketone extract ends up increasing adiponectin levels in rats, and therefore they made the link that it could help with fat loss. That has nothing to do with ketosis. So again, if you see that on your newsfeed, you see that on Instagram, just ignore it. It doesn't really matter.
So just a recap, 7-keto is not keto, but it's not necessarily bad. Carbs post-workout, if at all. You don't really need them. Lean cuts of meat, get them from ButcherBox. Urine test strips, don't even bother. Just test your blood if you're going to test at all. Lastly, raspberry ketones.