What Are Ketones

As you may know, Ketosis is that process where your body burns fat in order to retrieve energy, but what are Ketones? Ketones are a by-product of the Ketosis process and in this article you are going to learn a little more about these little guys.

What is Ketosis?

By now you may already know what is Ketosis and how it works but in case you don’t let’s go through it again.

When your body doesn’t have enough glucose to satisfy the energy demand it will switch to a metabolic state of Ketosis.

Ketosis is basically your body starting to break down your body fat in order to produce energy.

Depending on your nutrition and physical activity it can take hours or days to get into a state of Ketosis.

So once again, we can see Ketosis as

  1. Energy demand by the body
  2. Not enough glucose to satisfy the demand
  3. Ketosis, body using fat as alternative fuel

What Are Ketones?

Ok, now that you know the basic steps of the Ketosis process we can add one more

  1. Energy demand by the body
  2. Not enough glucose to satisfy the demand
  3. Ketosis, body using fat as alternative fuel
  4. Production of Ketones

As you can already guess,

Ketones are a by-product of the Ketosis process.

They are substances that are created by the body when it enters in a Ketosis metabolic state.

Ketones are produced to help in the delivery of the energy or as a waste and you will soon see this in more details.

Ketones, also called Ketone Bodies, can be seen as an alternative energy for the body.

To use an example, imagine a hybrid electric car, the car runs on battery until they are charged and falls back to petrol when battery is low.

If our body is the car, the battery is the glucose and when this is low the car starts using the petrol.

Types of Ketones

If we want to see the Ketones in more details, we can separate them in three

  • Acetoacetate (AcAc
  • Beta-hydroxybutric acid (BHB)
  • Acetone

AcAc is the first ketone body produced and from it the process results in BHB.

AcAc and BHB are the ones involved in the transportation of energy from the liver to other parts of the body.

Acetone is created as a side product of the whole body and it is an interesting one.

If not used in the short term it is expelled from the body through breath and/or urine.

This can result in some people in a smelly breath.

Ketones are important during a Ketogenic Diet because their level can be tested and can confirm if the body is in a Ketosis state.

Is It So Natural For The Body To Use Ketones?

It actually is and it is also easy to understand why.

You must know that the human body was designed to run on Ketones.

If you think to the type of nutrition human had in the past you can notice it was very different.

Years ago, actually centuries ago, food wasn’t available in the way it is now.

Cooking was simple if even existing. There were no processed food.

There wasn’t this variety of sugars, pasta, bread and carbs.

Last but not least, there weren’t 3-5 meals a day.

Back then the body was mostly relying on Ketones to work, and it still has this ability.

Research has actually discovered that, when using Ketones, there are some advantages, but also disadvantages.


In this article we revised what is the Ketosis metabolic state and explained what are Ketones.

Ketones are produced when the body is burning fat in order to get energy.

They are the original fuel the body used when there was, and there is, a shortage carbs. Are either used for energy or removed from the body. Their level can be tested and there are advantages and disadvantages to run on that fuel.

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