Ketosis, or hyperketonemia, is caused when the body is forced to use its fat as a source of energy. Although ketosis is the fastest way to lose fat, there are some strong disadvantages to forcing this process on oneself. Since the human body is designed to use glycogen (sugar) first, the typical American does not experience ketosis unless a drastic change of diet occurs.
The typical American consumes sugar every single day. This sugar, no matter what shape or form it is in, is the body’s first fuel source. When the average American Joe grabs coffee and a bagel for breakfast, the body releases insulin (along with a slew of other hormones) into the bloodstream to convert the sugars into glycogen. Glycogen is used throughout the day to do simple tasks such as think, talk, walk, type, press elevator buttons, climb stairs, etc. Only when glucose stores run out, which usually is impossible on an American type diet, the body starts dipping into its reserves. The body then turns its fatty acids into fuel. This process is as inefficient as it is complicated and I will not bore you with details; however, in the end, the body burns fats like a microwave melts butter.
Going into ketosis intentionally can be both difficult and dangerous. A typical ketogenic diet involves consuming only meat, eggs, lentils, and a limited amount of vegetables. For those with metabolic syndrome (a person who consumes an abundance of sugar) withdrawals are common and can be problematic. In fact, withdrawals from sugar are just as bad as withdrawals from cigarettes. Moreover, removing sugar from the diet is extremely hard to do in the Western world. Sugar is found in just about everything from salad dressing and other dairy products to salsa and most other processed goods. It is hidden by many different names and does not always have to be listed in the ingredients (companies use loopholes to their advantage when it comes to product labels). Not to mention, two weeks on a ketogenic diet makes even the most laid back person in the world go psychotic; there is no flavor, no variety, and no excitement in any of the prepared food. A ketogenic diet turns food into just sustenance and no more; not to mention the metabolism skyrockets so satiety is hard to tame.
Ketogenic diets also damage the liver and kidneys over time. Prolonged ketosis lowers the body’s pH levels which can lead to acidosis. Acidosis can be as minor as inflammation, heart arrhythmias, migraines, and lowered immunity against disease. In extreme cases, acidosis can lead to severe complications including nerve damage, cancer, coma, and even death. Ketogenic diets also may cause premature osteoporosis and inhibit the body’s ability to repair or restore bone deficiency.
An alternative to a full ketogenic diet is to utilize the body’s natural metabolic cycle in order to burn fat more efficiently. We know that simply reducing calories will not enable the body to burn stored fat (weight loss in a low-calorie diet is more muscle mass and water weight than fat loss); furthermore, low calorie diets slow the metabolism and send the body into panic mode increasing the amount of energy the body stores as fat. Lipolysis diet allows the body to be nourished enough to maintain a healthy metabolism but decreases the blood sugar enough for the body to consume its own fat. The most important component about the Lipolysis diet is that it keeps cravings to a minimum. This diet works great on people with metabolic syndrome and diabetes. It also works well with those who have become dependent on sweets or diet sweets.
What exactly is the Lipolysis diet?
For starters, it is important to understand a person’s metabolism is slowest after they first wake up. It doesn’t matter if they wake up at 4am or 6pm, the metabolism naturally drops during sleep. Both the hormones and the metabolism activate about 15 minutes after awakening. The height of the metabolism should be around mid-day, increasing in the summer months and waning in the winter months. The metabolism starts to slow down again during the evening time; this is why eating large, late-night dinners can help pack on the pounds. Metabolism also slows down with age, noticing a rapid decline in the early 30’s and again in the mid-50’s. Purposely reducing calories can make this process worse, mucking up hormone levels and wrecking havoc on the metabolic process.
Hormones are the most important component to fat loss. Hormones tell the body what to do, how to do it, and when to do it. There are over two and a half dozen hormones involved in the accepting and processing of energy. Each hormone has a specific function and works most efficiently when the body is properly nourished and rested. This is why it is paramount that the body rests for a solid 7 – 9 hours during sleep (or 3 – 4 uninterrupted REM cycles) per twenty-four hour period. It is also very important to take a good multivitamin, one which absorbs completely and does not oxidize during its breakdown; and a similarly dependable calcium supplement should be taken as well. Another important supplement to always take is Omega-3 fatty acids with a minimum of 70% from DHA. Omega-3 fatty acids aid in heart and brain health, among other important functions.
The Lipolysis diet is simple and based in heavy science. Consuming the right foods at the right times according to individual rhythms can lead to rapid fat loss. Since there is a huge difference between fat loss and weight loss, it is important to base success on measurements instead of the scale. Either measurements by caliper skin-fold test, electronic body fat analyzer, or good ol’ fashioned tape measure will indicate fat loss. The best way to measure success is to wait until the moment you need a belt, and then need new pants.
Upon rising out of bed, drink a glass of slightly cooler-than-room-temperature water, however, it should not be cold. Bowel movements should follow shortly. Eat or drink more fiber throughout the day if this is not the case. Before breakfast, drink a cup of straight black coffee or warm tea to increase your metabolism; add cinnamon to stabilize your blood sugar and add flavor. Try hibiscus tea, green tea, oolong tea, white tea, black tea, fruit tea, and other herbal teas. Make tea a habit.
For breakfast, have your fill of complex carbohydrates, fruit, and a 1:1 mix of animal protein and plant protein (lentils or legumes). Oatmeal, eggs, beans with cheese, whole-grain toast, apple and peanut butter, would be a perfect breakfast. But whole grain pancakes or waffles, bacon, ham, sausage, omelets, and other substitutes can be made. Limit biscuits and other simple-carbohydrate bombs, these items prohibit your body from using its fat stores.
Eat a piece of fruit, some nuts, and a little bit of something “bad” for snack. You should still be full from breakfast so don’t stuff yourself. Something “bad” should be more gourmet-status and less junk but have whatever you are craving.
Lunch should follow just an hour and a half or so after snack. Adjust your schedule to fit lunch in. Skipping lunch can devastate your metabolism again. Lunch should be 20% animal protein, 30% plant protein, 45% vegetables and 5% everything else. Open-faced sandwiches stacked high with vegetables is a great choice. Cobb salad with vinaigrette is another option. Fajitas, wraps, and pizza can also fit the bill if vegetables are the main ingredient. It is very hard to follow this regimen when eating at fast food joints because their food is about 70% carbohydrates, 20% animal parts, and 10% preservatives. But if you are stuck in a fast food joint and have to order something, be sure to get a salad or a bun-less burger with extra vegetables. Be creative.
Eating a snack in-between lunch and dinner is optional but it should be almost entirely protein. Protein shake, piece of chicken, or hard-boiled eggs are some good examples.
Dinner should come early. In fact, it should be completely eaten before dusk. The body naturally slows down its metabolism in the evening so eating early reduces fat storage. This meal should be the lightest meal of the day, consisting of 30% animal protein, 40% plant protein, 25% green vegetables, and 5% of everything else. Light spices make for a pleasant taste and can mix things up. Meals such as homemade soup or meatloaf with a light salad on the side can be a perfect ending to the day.
You may experience an increase in your metabolism. This is good but with it comes increased hunger. If you find yourself in need of a snack late at night, do not succumb to junk food. Save the craving for morning snack. Instead, drink a glass of water and eat a hard-boiled egg, tuna, or organic hotdog. The protein will satisfy you until morning.
The last thing I want to address is exercise. It is very important to find time each day to both stretch and exercise. Altogether, strength training and cardio are essential to increasing your metabolism. Exercising could be done all at once, in intervals, or intermittently throughout the day. Little movements add up in the long run. Keep moving throughout the day and stretch in the evenings before bed. Simply by doing this, you should see results in less than a week.