Saturday, January 07, 2017

Hacking Ketones - N=1 experiments with Keto//OS, MCTs and more!

So, most of my readers know that I'm into hacking and self-experimentation AND that I've been involved in low-carb and keto in clinical practice, and as a researcher, for twenty years. 

Despite having used keto-diets for two decades and experimenting heavily with medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) and other things to either hasten entry into ketosis or help increase ketone levels for cognition and fueling, I had never tried exogenous (from outside the body, i.e. a supplement) ketones. 

Many of my students and colleagues were asking questions about exogenous ketones and so, although I could answer the questions from a scientific basis, I always think that you need to temper that with an experiential approach too. 


I decided to do an initial little self-experiment using Keto//OS. A supplemental betahydroxybutyrate (BOHB) product. 

Over several days I compared my blood BOHB response to either:
One sachet of Keto//OS (approximately 7 g of total lipid)
Or/ the equivalent amount of MCT oil or Extra Virgin Coconut Oil. 

I took the product on rising, on an empty stomach and tested blood BOHB 30 min after ingestion and then again at 2 hours post-ingestion using an Abbot Freestyle Optium ketometer. 
After doing these first three days of testing I reversed the order of tests and did another one to check. The measures below are the average of the two days. 

You can see in the table below that the Keto//OS (unsurprisingly) resulted in a much greater initial rise in BOHB that quickly declined. 

To see if there was any advantage in combining Keto + MCT I upped the dose of MCT to 1 x Tbsp. and combined with a 1/2 sachet of Keto//OS (second from right) resulting in a similar rise in BOHB but a more sustained response. I also tried this with a (high) dose of protein (Nuzest Clean Lean Protein). The increase in BOHB was similar, with good residual results. 

So how did I feel?
A full dose of Keto//OS worked really well. I felt clear, improved cognition, and increased satiety and much more so than either of the equivalent doses of MCT or EVCO.
The full-dose Keto//OS did make my stomach just a little 'gripey', similar to the feeling from taking a dose of MCT oil that is fractionally too high. (Remember that this is very individual dependent).
There was little difference in effect (for me) from taking a 1/2 serve of Keto//OS with 1 x Tbsp. of MCT.

BUT - the best result for my mental clarity, cognition, satiety and overall feeling of wellbeing was from having a 1/2 dose of Keto//OS with 1 x Tbsp. MCT AND 40 g protein. 

I typically respond best to combining good fats with protein and I noticed that I was fuller for longer, even clearer mentally and had energy to burn.

The other advantage of this strategy is that I can mix a batch up in the morning, with 1 x sachet Keto//OS, 80 g protein, and 2 x Tbsp. of MCT oil, drink one serve in the morning, and then another early afternoon, and that pretty much gets me through the day.

I'm going to experiment with other dosing strategies.
What have you found works best for you?

Interested in trying Keto//OS [CLICK HERE]
Or contact me to find out more about Keto, ketones and low-carb: 

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