Ketosis – What is it & How do I know If I am in Ketosis?

  • Author: Katie
  • Date: October 9, 2022
  • Time to Read: 4 min.

Ketosis is the holy grail for anybody living a keto lifestyle. In this article, I will take you through what ketosis is, how to know whether you are in ketosis and how long it takes to get into ketosis. Here we go….!  

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What is Ketosis?

The keto diet/way of living is an amazing way of living that will improve your health and allow you to lose weight whilst eating full flavor foods.

Keto is a low carb, high fat (LCHF) way of living which sees a person significantly reduce the number of carbs that they consume.

If you want to know more about what a keto way of living check out this article here.

how-do-i-know-if-i-am-in-ketosis

When eating keto (low-carb, high-fat), ketones are produced in the liver, these are then flushed around the body as your body starts converting fat into energy as opposed to sugars.

When the body had started burning fat instead of sugars, this status is called ketosis.

Confused by all of these keto terms – check out this article here for a quick reference guide.

For people living a keto lifestyle, ketosis is the holy grail!

How can you tell if you are in ketosis?

Check out of is article which takes you through the main side effects of keto and how to overcome these. To make life easier for you, I have summarised the key symptoms below;  

  • Keto Flu
  • Keto Breath / Halitosis
  • Keto Pee / Ketones in Urine
  • Keto Sweat
  • Keto Crotch
  • Lack of Energy / Lethargy
  • Bowel Movements
  • Exceptional Thirst
  • Cramping Leg Muscles
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Alcohol tolerances reduced

These symptoms are normally a good indication that you are moving into ketosis. However, if you need to know definitively whether you are in ketosis, there are a few simple tests that you can do.

Tests to know whether you are in ketosis

Testing Ketones

Testing your ketones is the quickest and easiest way to know if you are in ketosis. When your body stops processing sugar for energy and starts processing fat for energy, ketones are produced in your liver and carried around your body.

How To Know When Your Body Is In Ketosis

You can know whether you are in ketosis by testing the ketones in your breath, urine, or blood. I’ll talk you through these below. Each method of testing is checking for different types of ketones.  

Testing Ketones in your breath to know whether you are in ketosis

Testing for ketones in your breath to learn whether you are in ketosis. This test measures the level of acetone (acetone is a ketone) levels in your breath.

There are several different devices on the market that test for breath ketone, acetone.

Testing Ketones in your urine to know whether you are in ketosis

Your ketones in your urine can also be measured. This test measures the acetoacetate (ketone) levels in your urine.

The low-tech way to test for ketosis is with urine test strips designed to check for the ketone acetoacetate. There are many commercial brands available on Amazon.

Although some people are put off by this method of testing (for obvious reasons). It is the cheapest way to test whether you are in ketosis and is perfect if you are new to keto and you’re not sure whether you’re going to stick with it.  

Testing Ketones in your blood to know whether you are in ketosis

Using blood tests to check whether you’re in ketosis is the third main method for establishing whether you’re in ketosis. Keto blood tests measure your β-hydroxybutyrate levels.

This is the most accurate way of checking whether you are in ketosis and how deep you are in ketosis. A blood monitor for ketosis is the most expensive of the three options.

Which method of testing whether I am in ketosis is for me?

Each method of ketone testing measures something different and β-hydroxybutyrate, acetoacetate and acetone are all ketones produced during fat metabolism.

If you are burning fat, you are making ketones, so all three can be a gauge of ketosis. The blood monitor is the most accurate test for ketones. The breath and urine strips are both accurate but are not as specific as to how deep you are in ketosis.

Which method of testing for ketosis would I recommend?

This is a question I get asked all of the time, but it is a really difficult question to answer. If you are doing keto for a medical reason, or you need to know the detail for a diet to work for you – I would recommend the blood monitor. This is due to the level of detail that it will provide to you.

However, if you’re embracing a keto lifestyle as a method of weight loss or to improve your health, the urine strips are a good option as they are the cheapest!

How long does it take to get into ketosis?

How long does it take to get into ketosis, is another question that I get asked regularly? There is no simple answer to this as it depends on each individual.

It depends on what you have eaten for the days prior to trying this and also how active you are. For me, if I do not do any exercise, it takes me 2-4 days to get back into ketosis.

I hope that this answers all of your questions about testing for ketosis if there is anything else you need to know, just pop it in the questions below, or send me a message and we will try and answer it for you!

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