Why I bought Ketostix
Recommend this product?
I have been using Ketostix on and off for 15 yrs since I started low carb dieting. They are used to test for Ketones in the urine which are produced when you are not eating carbs and your body is burning fat for energy rather than sugar. They are a really accurate indicator of dietary carb intake and can be used along with your bathroom scale as a tool to help you with your weight loss. I have used them on and off over the years because sometimes when I am not careful I gain back a few pounds and then when I am getting back on track they help me to figure out how low I need to go on my carbs to get my body back to burning fat.
What are Ketones
Ketones are a result of the process that your body goes through to burn fat. When they body is not using Carbohydrates for energy it will have to turn to fat. If you are not burning Glucose from Carbs then your body will turn to the fat stores and start burning that. When Fat is broken down for energy the body burns Ketones. When Carbohydrates from your diet are broken down for energy your body burns Glucose. This is a very simplified description, you should ask your doctor for a more detailed one and also ask if it safe for you to be on a ketogenic diet before starting.
Why Measure Ketones
When you are going on a low carb diet like Atkins especially, it works because when you do not eat any carbohydrates then the body is forced to turn to the fat stores and burn them. I think certain diets work well for certain people and for me Atkins / Low Carb diets work best.
When you start a low carb diet like Atkins you want to have your carbs down to about 20 a day. You may think that is really low but most if not all of the carbs should be from things salad. Trust me 20 carbs of lettuce, broccoli, and other green veggies is a lot to eat.
So when you start your diet you want to know if you have reached Ketosis because that is the true measurement of whether your body is burning fat or not. While the scale is a good indicator, often it can fluctuate from day to day depending on water retention and other factors but as long as we are in Ketosis then we know for a fact that we are burning fat.
How to use the Ketostix
Ketostix are really easy to use. You can test at any time of the day and in the beginning it is best to do that to make sure that you are in ketosis all the time. The level does not seem to matter as much as that you are getting a positive result. The test is done by dipping the strip briefly into a urine sample or you can just hold them in the urine stream and then after 15 seconds the color is compared to the chart on the bottle. The test will show you negative which is no color change if you are not in ketosis and five levels of ketones representing Trace(5), Small(15), Moderate(40) and two levels of what is considered Large(80 & 160)
Each Person is going to have a different level that seems about right for them. For me between small and moderate is a good level to start with and then as long as I am getting at least a trace result I know I am still in a good range.
A helpful tip to make your Ketostix last longer
If you are concerned about the cost of the Ketostix I have heard that some people will use a sharp scissors to cut the strips into two by cutting down the middle of the strip to form two thinner strips. This should work well and the strips are just as accurate. This will turn your 100 strips into 200.
Using Ketostix as your diet progresses
As you progress on a low carb diet such as Atkins, you can continue to test for Ketones. Especially when you move out of induction after the first two weeks and start to gradually increase your carbs, you want to make sure that your body is still burning fat so you can use the ketostix to measure that you are still in ketosis. If you add carbs very gradually you can usually keep your body in the fat burning mode. I only add about 5 extra daily carbs after each two weeks and the more gradually you add them the better the diet works for you.
Other uses for Ketostix
Ketostix are also used for Type 1 and Insulin Dependent Type 2 Diabetics to measure for Ketoacidosis which is a dangerous condition. Like I stated earlier, it is always good to check with your doctor before starting any diet to make sure it is safe for you. Interestingly the Atkins Diet and other low carb diets are usually very good for diabetics because that way they need less insulin to control their disease. You just want to make sure that you check with your doctor to see if there is anything special that you should be aware of given your specific medical conditions.
Thanks for reading my Review
If you have any comments or questions on Ketostix or Atkins type, low carb diets, feel free to post them in the comment section.
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