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Introduction Of Ketones

There are two basic forms of fuel the body uses to keep the body running at its most basic cellular level. The primary form of energy used is glucose. Glucose is obtained from digested foods (carbohydrates). Protein can also be converted to glucose in a process called gluconeogensis. Fat when digested is broken down into fatty acids and glycerol. Glycerol can also be converted to glucose. Fatty acids can used by the body or be converted to ketones. In addition to digested food, the body has reserves of fuel in the liver called glycogen, which can be converted to glucose when needed. There are also small stores of glycogen in muscle tissue. When necessary protein can be stripped from muscle mass to convert to glucose in times of extreme need. Likewise fatty acids can be converted to ketones by breaking down fat stored in adipose tissue and converting it into ketones in the cells of the liver.
It may seem like ketones have a bad reputation since we've seen so many problems occur with DKA but ketones are actually used by the body everyday to provide energy to some primary body organs like the heart and can be used as an alternate energy source when glucose is lacking. They also help reserve the glucose supply for those organs that prefer it like the brain. They can be found at normal basal levels in blood and urine. When we talk about losing weight and burning fat, we are actually talking about using ketones. Dieters and people stranded in the wilderness rely on ketones to survive.
Ketones only become problematic when they replace glucose as the primary energy source. It's the excessive use of ketones which can cause the body's PH to lower and turn the blood acidic creating metabolic disorders such as diabetic ketoacidosis. When ketones have reached the level where they can be detected using urine test strips – that is the danger sign.