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via amazon.com Medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) are fatty acids usually derived from coconut or palm oil. They are one of several popular keto supplements commonly used by keto dieters. a 2018 review suggests that people who use MCT oil reach ketosis more quickly than people who do not. Plus, people who use MCT oil may have higher levels of circulating ketones in the blood, the review said.

Vojdani says. Taking it in the morning will help you get the biggest benefits from that brain boost, he adds. “It really helps curb appetite, pushing your first true meal into later in the day and potentially amplifying the effect of intermittent fasting if you are doing this alongside keto,” he says.

Buy now via amazon.com This is a type of ketone metabolite—an energy molecule. Your body forms beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) when it’s breaking down and burning fat; people in ketosis tend to have higher levels of BHB. As one of many keto supplements, BHB salts “trick the body and force the brain to lower glucose production and switch to burning fat instead,” says Sarah Peterson, content manager at 10 ways the keto diet can backfire.

As the popularity of the ketogenic diet continues to grow so does interest in how to optimize health while following this high-fat, low-carb eating plan.Because the keto diet cuts out a number of food options, it’s a good idea to supplement with specific nutrients.Not to mention, some supplements can help dieters reduce adverse effects of the keto flu and even enhance athletic performance when training on a low-carb diet.Here are the best supplements to take on a keto diet..

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Flavor Keto powders often come with flavoring while at the same time being sugar-free and low net carb. You can find basic flavors like vanilla or chocolate, but some manufacturers offer more inventive flavors. If you have a sweet tooth, select a powder sweetened with stevia, a natural nonsugar substitute, over artificial sweeteners to keep with your macros.

FAQ Q. Why are electrolytes an important supplement for a keto diet? A. Especially when you start a keto diet, your kidneys will dump excess water, which puts you at risk for losing key minerals, like potassium, calcium, sodium, and magnesium. This can result in "keto flu" symptoms like fatigue, brain fog, and other unpleasant symptoms that can be mitigated by an intake of these key electrolytes.

Is caffeine allowed on a keto diet? A. Yes, in fact many keto supplements contain caffeine, usually in the form of green tea, to combat fatigue associated with starting a keto diet. They are also included in keto supplements formulated for workouts and athletes, as caffeine is a performance enhancer.

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The keto diet is a powerful tool for weight loss, hormone balance, brain function, and more. When you’re on a ketogenic diet, your body runs a little differently, and you have a few specific needs. Electrolytes, ketone supplements, specific vitamins, and mitochondrial enhancers can all help you feel even better when you’re in ketosis.

Read on to learn why you’re better off skipping these supplements, and what to use instead. The ketogenic diet is a powerful tool for upgrading your body and brain. Eating keto has all kinds of benefits, including: More fat burning and weight loss Better brain function Balanced hormones Stronger mitochondria for more energy Decreased cravings You get all these benefits because your body runs differently on a ketogenic diet.

Here, four of the best keto supplements to take when you’re on a ketogenic diet, plus two common supplements you can skip. Download: 7-Day Keto Meal Plan and Recipes for Beginners These four supplements are particularly valuable when you’re on any type of keto diet, whether it’s standard, targeted keto.

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It can give you extra mental focus when you sit down to start your day, and it’s also great for a physical boost before an intense workout. Not all MCT oils deliver the same results. Look for an MCT oil that is pure caprylic acid (C8), like Brain Octane, which your body can convert into ketones (bundles of fuel) almost instantly.

Other, standard medium chain triglyceride (MCT) oils contain weaker ingredients like capric acid and lauric acid, which provide only a fraction of the ketones that C8 MCTs do. You can read more about the different types of MCT oil here. The graph below shows how much more Brain Octane Oil increases ketone levels, compared to generic MCT oil and coconut oil: Learn all about MCT oil and keto here, including how it spurs weight loss.

Your glycogen stores are energy reserves; when you do something particularly taxing or go a few hours without eating, you’ll start to burn your glycogen stores for fuel. Things are different when you’re on a keto diet. You aren’t eating carbs or sugar, which means your glycogen stores stay pretty empty.

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Your body needs a lot of water to store glycogen, which is why you lose several pounds of water weight in your first few days on keto — you’re emptying your glycogen stores and getting rid of the water that goes with them. As you lose water, your kidneys excrete electrolytes — sodium, magnesium, and potassium — to keep your system in balance.

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To prevent these keto side effects, make sure you get plenty of electrolytes when you’re in ketosis. Magnesium: 400 mg/day, taken in the morning or before bed Best form: magnesium citrate or magnesium glycinate Potassium: 4000 mg/day, dissolved in water and taken throughout the day. Don’t drink it all at once; it’ll cause digestive distress Best form: potassium chloride powder Sodium: 2000-4000 mg/day, dissolved in water or on food Best form: Sea salt or pink Himalayan salt Folate is an essential building block for your brain and for DNA synthesis.

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Vitamin B6 works alongside folate as a cofactor. The two deplete each other, so you want to make sure you have plenty of both. Fortunately, pork, beef, and eggs are all high in vitamin B6, so as long as you’re eating meat on keto, you probably have enough B6. When you’re looking for a folate supplement, always choose methyl folate and not folic acid; if you have an MTHFR gene mutation (many people do), you won’t use folic acid properly and it can build up in your system and cause problems.

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Giorgos tests his blood ketones Mental performance: Tested using an attention test, where the participants had to pay attention to small changes in the length of two lines and indicate when there were subtle changes, and focus test, where participants had to press the relevant key when different circles on the screen changed color.

Giorgos takes the mental performance test Physical performance: Performing reps to exhaustion of the following exercises on different testing days: pushups, jump squats, tricep dips, burps and flutter kicks (a big thank you to Dr. Benjamin Bikman, Ph.D. for his input on how to design this part of the experiment!) Jonatan performs pushups to exhaustion We also designed a questionnaire to test some other, more subjective markers.

The questionnaire looked at the following things: Mood Hunger Mental claity/ “brain fog” Energy Taste Erik fills in the questionnaire Why didn’t we test the effects of the supplements on weight loss? Well, first of all, we would probably have had to continue the testing over much longer periods of time to see any change in weight.

The weight loss claim is just not true. Ketones are fuel molecules that can be used for energy by cells in the body. If you drink ketones, you will burn those ketones. You will not be burning fat. For anyone who wants to get a bit more technical, research by Stubbs and colleagues shows that BHB shuts off lipolysis (fat breakdown).

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But with exogenous ketosis those factors stimulating ketosis are not present, so the overall effect of the ingested BHB is to decrease lipolysis. If the supplements cause enough of a reduction in hunger, this could cause people to eat less and therefore, indirectly, cause weight loss. We will find out just how much of an effect the supplements have on hunger in the experiment.

In fact, a number of people in my consumer survey reported that they stopped using the supplements due to weight gain. This could make sense, as drinking ketones basically means you’re adding empty calories on top of whatever else you’re consuming. We chose 4 major brands of ketone supplement to test.

It’s worth noting that some companies are a little bit more transparent than others. Here is a quick overview of the brands of supplement included in the experiment and the product we tested: Amount of BHB per serving: Unknown: proprietary blend Price per serving: $6.50 Multi-level marketing? Yes Other ingredients: Erythritol, L-taurine, fermented L-leucine, malic acid, natural flavor, stevia, xantham gum, citric acid Amount of BHB per serving: 11.7 g goBHB™ Price per serving: $2.67 Multi-level marketing? No Other ingredients: Citric acid, natural and artificial flavors, beetroot extract, stevia, malic acid, riboflavin (color) Amount of BHB per serving: 11.38 g goBHB™ Price per serving: $3.93 Multi-level marketing? No Other ingredients: MCT oil powder, acacia fiber, cocoa powder, natural flavor, stevia leaf extract, monk fruit extract Amount of BHB per serving: Unknown: proprietary blend* Price per serving: $2.00 Multi-level marketing? Yes Other ingredients: MCT powder, citric acid, natural flavors, silica, guar gum, rebaudioside A and beta carotene (color) *In the case of Kegenix Prime, we are told there are 10 g of Kegenix’s “PRIME ketone blend”, but we are not told how much of those 10 g are BHB and how much are MCT (medium-chain triglyceride) powder.

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The reason we needed five days was that we included a placebo (an artificially flavored drink with no caffeine content) alongside the four brands we tested. Our teammates didn’t know that one of the supplements was a placebo. We also gave everyone a different supplement each time, to rule out any improvement in the tests being a result of people simply getting better at those tests over time.

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This would allow us to compare the results of the tests before and after taking the supplement, and also compare this against the results of the placebo. The reason for testing after one hour was based on Prüvit’s “59-minute test”, which recommends testing ketones 45-60 minutes after taking the supplement (by the way, saying “59 minutes” instead of 60 minutes or 1 hour just sounds like another marketing gimmick to me).

We carried out the testing at more or less the same time each day. As I mentioned before, this was by no means a scientific experiment carried out under lab conditions, and this means we can only draw tentative conclusions from any of the data. Nonetheless, carrying out the testing in the way described above should give most people a good idea of how well the ketone supplements show the noticeable benefits they are marketed to have and provide a clear enough basis for a decision on whether or not to buy them.

The first table shows the average results of all the brands of ketone supplements grouped together and compared to the placebo in this graph. The second table shows how the different brands performed against each other, and against the placebo, too. Table 1 compares exogenous ketones collectively with the placebo.It shows the total average change in markers tested before and after the supplements as a group, versus the placebo.

When the results for the supplement and the placebo were within 0.2 (either % or mmol/L) of each other, we classed the supplement as neither “better” nor “worse” than the placebo. We gave a “winning brand” sticker to the brand that scored highest against the placebo for each marker, but not for physical performance, since none of the supplements performed better than the placebo for that marker.

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We were at the very least expecting that drinking a ketone supplement would cause blood ketones to rise, but an average increase of 0.33 mmol/L is very small. The supplement associated with the highest average increase in blood ketones was Prüvit’s Keto-OS Max, but it was only an increase of 0.6 mmol/L.

I had the chance to interview Dr. Ryan Lowery, Ph.D. about this in person. He performs some (not peer-reviewed) research on different brands of ketone salts and is listed as one of the “specialists” on Prüvit’s website. He suggested that we had perhaps ran the tests too long after the supplements were taken, stating that blood ketones tend to peak at 30 minutes.

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Plus, do you really want to spend up to $390/month on a product that gives you the benefits of ketosis for half an hour? I also chatted to some Prüvit reps, who told me that it might be necessary to keep taking the supplements for a couple of months to start to see more elevated ketones.

But I would hesitate before spending money on a two-month supply just to find out if that’s true. Real Ketones’ Kegenix Prime was associated with a decrease blood ketones. Not a good start, and we’ll get back to this point later. For many of the other markers, the ketone supplements performed pretty poorly, especially for physical performance! The ketone supplements were associated with a 5.4% decrease in physical performance while the artificially-sweetened, non-caffeinated beverage I used as a placebo was associated with a 20.3% increase: a big difference in favour of the placebo.

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