You’ve probably heard all the buzz about exogenous ketones by now (especially if you’re ever in the company of advanced keto lifestylers). And if you haven’t had the time to read a bunch of articles with overly scientific jargon, then it’s likely you’ve avoided implementing them altogether.
Personally, I’m not all that concerned with the hundreds of studies, how chemical compounds interact, yada yada whatever. When I hear about a new supplement I want to know what it’s supposed to do and the basics of how it works.
That being said, if you want to get a Ph.D in the molecular makeup of exogenous ketones, check out a different article. If you want some digestible information though, keep reading.
Exogenous Ketones: Fuel For Your Body, Mind, and Goals
As far as our bodies (and brain) go, our cells need a fuel source. Our body breaks protein breaks down as aminos, and we can use those as energy. Carbs break down as glucose, and we can use that as a fuel source. With fats, our body breaks those down into ketones.
Our primary focus today is on ketones, but I’ll get into the other fuel sources it another blog. Or someone else will, because I haven’t had carbs since 2004…if you caught that reference, here’s a high five.
There are two types of ketones
- Endogenous: ketones that come from within our body and will eventually build up enough to kick you into ketosis.
- Exogenous: ketones that you can dump into your body to throw your body into ketosis and use for fuel immediately
(Endogenous) Ketones and Ketosis
I’m not going to go really in depth about ketosis in this blog because, let’s be honest, if you’re reading this, you already know the basics. I will, however, mention some of the benefits of being in ketosis.
- Improved cognitive function
- Better metabolic efficiency
- Fat burning state
- Abs (see right>)
- To quote my wife, “nice shelf glutes (or a bum that’s UP).”
- Provided you’re doing your squats, deadlifts, hip thrusts, lunges, etc.
- Be a better human
- No more sugar crashes
- Your significant other loves you more because hanger decreases
- LeBron James and Halle Berry do keto.
- I know, that’s more of a statement than a benefit.
Ketones are organic compounds produced by your body when your system has entered a starvation state. Alternatively, when you’ve cut carbs and replaced them with fats (primarily), or undergone an exhaustive period of exercise, it induces a starvation-like state that produces endogenous ketone bodies.
The problem for a lot of us is that producing endogenous ketones through nutrition and exercise can be, well, kind of a pain in the ass.
Some things you might experience doing it organically:
- (potentially) 2-3 week transition
- Brain Fog
- Keto flu
- Muscle depletion
- Energy decline
Yes, once you get over the transition phase, it’s absolutely worth it. But what if there was a faster, more efficient way to kick your body into ketosis?
Oh wait, there totally is!
Enter Exogenous Ketones
Let me ask you a couple incredibly profound questions. Don’t worry, I provide all the answers as well.
- Do you want to be leaner? Ketones.
- Do you seek repentance for that sinful cheat day (that was supposed to just be one taco)? Ketones.
- Do you want to improve athletic performance? Ketones.
- Feeling sluggish throughout the day? Yup, Ketones.
- Do you want to be the smartest person in the room? You guessed it. Ketones help there too. Well, maybe.
When you take exogenous ketones you provide your body with an instant supply of ketones to run off of, spiking your ketone body level and putting you into a state of ketosis.
Before I get into the several benefits of exogenous ketones, I wouldn’t be able to sleep at night if I didn’t provide some potential pitfalls of taking them, as well as how to avoid these.
The biggest one is that exogenous ketones take precedence over your endogenous ketone production. The reason this can be a negative is that our endogenous ketones are what’s responsible for burning fat. When you take exogenous ketones you’re putting them before the endogenous ketone production, which means you might be slowing the process of fat burning down.
This is what I’ve found works really well for me. Since I fast between 16-20 hours almost every day, I treat exogenous ketones like a pre-breakfast. So, let’s say I’m doing a 20 hour fast, I’ll rely on my endogenous ketone production up until about hour 14-16 or when I really start feeling groggy. This way, I’m getting the best of both worlds.
As we know, if you have a lunch with carbs, you automatically tell your body to use glucose for energy. But then let’s say you’re about to go get a workout in. You still want to burn fat and get leaner, so you try tricking your body back into using fat stores for energy by taking some exogenous ketones.
Sadly, it doesn’t work that way. Because exogenous ketones are such an easily accessible form of energy, your body is going to burn through those instead of the glucose. What happens to the glucose then? It gets stored as fat.
Don’t mix carbs and exogenous ketones. Ummm, duh.
Note: if you have a cheat meal at dinner, taking exogenous ketones for breakfast the next day CAN still help you trick your body back into ketosis. I’ll explain why in a second.
Benefits of Exogenous Ketones
Some of the benefits of ketones and how they affect your body:
- Circulation and blood flow. It’s going to increase blood flow to the brain to improve focus and reduce mental fog.
- Ready to use fuel source for instant energy
- Stimulant free, so the energy is clean
- Instant blood ketone level spike. In other words, trick your body into burning fat even while you’re just sitting around…not that you should always be sitting.
- Exogenous ketones work like a feedback loop, and make your body kind of like an addict. While giving your body exogenous ketones, it gets stoked because of how awesome the energy is. So, when you take the exogenous ketones away, your body starts scavenging for the form of energy closest in relation. Meaning, it jumps to utilizing your endogenous ketones.
- This is why I suggest adding in some exogenous ketones (half serving works best for me) the morning or afternoon after a cheat meal.
So, while exogenous ketones can potentially stall your fat loss, the benefits far outweigh the negatives. Especially if you use them intelligently.
What makes Bucked Up Exogenous Ketones Different?
Well, for starters, we don’t buck around with any of our products (bucked is just too convenient a substitution to pass up on). We only use the highest quality ingredients.
- Full disclosure. Non-proprietary blend.
- All natural. Sweetened with stevia.
- They beat all our competitors’ prices for a 30 serving tub.