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Measuring ketones on a ketogenic diet

Ketosis is the process of burning body fat for energy and can be measured when following a low-carb ketogenic diet.

To optimize your results towards more effective weight loss, it is important to track and tailor your diet as needed. Equally important is to know the safety implications of being on a ketogenic diet which will apply to people on certain diabetes and blood pressure medications.

How to measure ketones

Measuring your ketones using a blood ketone monitoring system (e.g. KetoTrak) is the most accurate method of measuring ketone levels.

When to measure ketones

When and how often to test ketones depends on what you want to accomplish.
If you are looking to compare whether you’re keeping in ketosis from day to day or week to week, then it makes sense to test at the same time (or times) of day. This will ensure you get consistent results.
As ketones vary through the day, and are affected by different types of meal and exercise, you may want to test at different times through the day to see how your level of ketosis varies.

Guideline targets

If you are starting (or re-starting) a ketogenic diet, it can take up to a few weeks for your body to switch to using ketones as its main fuel source so don’t give up too early.

Ketone levels of 0.5 to 1.5 mmol/l, light nutritional ketosis, is also beneficial although not to the degree of full nutritional ketosis.
The sweet spot for weight loss is 1.5 to 3.0 mmol/l. The longer you stay within these levels, the more fat you will burn and the more effective your weight loss efforts will be.