How To Tell You're Fat Adapted
By this point you’ve probably had ketosis explained to you so many times that you can explain it as well as a nutritionist. When you drop your carb intake to 5% of your, your body starts producing ketones after it burns through all its glucose. The benefits of this metabolic state include accelerated weight loss (because your own body fat is the primary fuel source); improved mood, focus, and energy; and reduced appetite.
Ketosis is only half the story. After about a month, your body becomes fat adapted. That's when fat becomes adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is then used to provide energy to every facet of the human organism. This is in juxtaposition to high-carb diets that lead to consistently elevated blood sugar levels. High blood sugar triggers an increase in insulin levels that then causes fat storage. And since these high-carb diets are also high in calories, weight loss seldom occurs.
Refined sugars and processed foods are the culprits behind most high carb diets are also responsible for a lot of illness. So, doing keto isn’t only a way to get health benefits now. Keto is also a way to have improved health later in life, in part thanks to fat adaption. One of the perks of fat adaption is that you can eat carbs, get knocked out of ketosis, but then go right back into ketosis once your body burns through all the carbs. Here’s how to tell you’re fat adapted.
Being in the fat adapted state means having more stable energy.
When you regularly consume a high carb diet, your body turns those carbs into glucose for energy. Because that source of energy is contingent upon an external source it's less stable than ketones. This is why glucose can cause sugar crashes, irritability, lethargy, headaches, etc. These symptoms are also similar to what you experience if you get the keto flu, which is what some people go through when they transition from a high carb diet to a ketogenic diet.
Symptoms of keto flu include fatigue, headache, irritability, brain fog, dizziness, sugar cravings, and nausea (look familiar? It’s just what it’s like when you regularly depend on carbs for fuel and go too long without eating). You can skip the keto flu by having exogenous ketones, which will allow your body to use ketones for fuel right away while burning off glucose stores.
Fat adaption entails less cravings.
Being hungry less often is how to tell you’re fat adapted. Fat is the most filling of macronutrients for several reasons. It lowers ghrelin, the hormone that triggers hunger; it lowers neuropeptide Y, which also triggers hunger; it ups your levels of CCK, a neuropeptide that makes you feel full; and, over all, fat is nine calories per gram while carbs and protein are four. You’ll have less carb cravings too.
Fat adaption makes it easier to follow tips for eating smaller portions. And you may also find yourself practicing intermittent fasting without realizing it! Of course, you still want to have a diet rich in macronutrients so that you don't experience adverse side effects like hair loss, diarrhea or constipation, or illnesses associated with vitamin deficiencies.
A clear mind is a symptom of fat adaption.
One of the most frequently touted reasons to do the keto diet is on the effect ketones have on one's subjective experience. People literally feel clear headed. Meanwhile, a study published in Physiology & Behavior called “‘The “sweet’ effect: Comparative Assessments of Dietary Sugars on Cognitive Performance” found that consuming a glucose rich drink adversely affected how participants did on cognitive tests relative to a group that consumed a placebo.
Fat adaption gives you better endurance.
How long you can do cardio is one way how to tell you're fat adapted. That's because when you're running on fat you're not burning up your glycogen stores ( the glucose your body holds onto for the purpose of having emergency fuel). That stored glycogen ends up being used when you need that extra boost at the end of your work out.
That’s good news because one of the reasons why you should do cardio while on keto is that long runs release human growth hormone (HGH)! HGH helps in muscle maintenance and increase, gives you more energy, and has anti-aging properties. Reducing sugar alone increases HGH, but two or more 45 minute cardio sessions per week also raise HGH! And thanks to fat adaptation it gets easier. A true virtuous cycle!
Fat adaption means accelerated weight loss!
How to tell you're fat adapted? You're losing fat! During the initial phase of keto you lose water weight, and that feels great. But then four weeks into strict keto is when the weight really starts to come off. So long as you have a caloric deficit, you're going to burn fat. This is also one of the reasons you can do keto on a 9 to 5 and still lose weight.
Add it all up, and it becomes clear that fat adaption is key to all the keto success stories. It makes it easier for you to avoid stress eating by making life less stressful and by making you less hungry! You may not notice a visible change right away. Slowly clothes will become looser and you’ll be able to fit into outfits you couldn’t fit into before. You’re more likely to even have people ask you if you’ve lost weight than recognize the change yourself. But it will happen!Once the fat is off, expect some surprising reactions! If you know what to do after you’ve lost weight than you know that some people will ask you for tips, you might find yourself getting more attention, and that some people will even be jealous. Luckily, the elevated mood that comes from fat adaption will make all these reactions easier to absorb!