There’s a saying that goes, “What gets measured, gets managed.”
This definitely applies when you’re going on a ketogenic diet. The whole goal of the diet is to reach a state of ketosis where the body is burning ketones for fuel instead of glucose.
In this stage the miracles occur. You’ll lose weight fast, feel more energetic, and derive all the other benefits of the keto diet.
It’s helpful to monitor if you’re in a state of ketosis. Some people track their progress daily, while those who are experienced may check once a week or so.
When you’re starting out, it’s ideal to check daily. Even consuming slightly more carbohydrates can throw you off ketosis and you’ll need to remedy the problem. By tracking your ketones, you’ll be able to fix any issues much faster.
Ketone urine test strips
This is probably the most inexpensive method of the lot. The downside is that it can be inaccurate and can give false readings depending on the hydration levels in your body and if you’re using ketone supplements, etc.
You can purchase these urine strips from most chemists/pharmacies. All you need to do is either pee in a container and dip the strip in the pee or just pee on the strip directly.
You’ll then wait for about 20 to 30 seconds to see the color of the strip. Match it against the color table provided on the label and see if you’re in ketosis.
Ketone blood test
Blood ketone meters are similar to the test kits that are used by diabetes patients to test their blood glucose levels. To use it, you’ll need to prick your finger using the lancet and let the machine detect if you’re in ketosis. Measuring your blood ketone levels is, by far, the most accurate way of detecting whether you’re in ketosis or not. You’ll be aiming for a reading that’s in the range of 0.5 to 3.
The downside to using a blood test is that you’ll need to keep pricking yourself once a day. People who are afraid of blood or pain will not be too keen on this method. Over and above that, you’ll need to buy the equipment for testing.
Ketonix (https://www.ketonix.com/) is a brand name for breath ketone analyzers and it’s a very popular brand. Thousands of people own these breathalyzers to test if they’re in ketosis.
These are simple enough to use. All you need to do is blow into the device. This is similar to the device used by the police to test if drivers have been drunk driving.
The device will measure the acetone in your breath and determine if you’re in ketosis. While this is more reliable than the urine strips, it is less reliable than the blood ketone meters.
If you do not wish to use any strips/devices to check for ketosis, you can look out for the usual signs that your body gives off when it’s in ketosis. While not highly accurate, you’ll have a rough idea that you’re in ketosis.
If you suddenly feel like you have increased energy, mental clarity, less hunger, a strong sweat smell, bad breath and weight loss, you’re probably in ketosis.
Keep doing what you’re doing and stick to the principles of the keto diet. That’s all there is to it.