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ketosis has a very very powerful effect when it comes down to stress and stress has a very powerful effect when it comes down to ketosis so understanding the relationship between the two is very very important but I do want to say that the focus of this video is to talk about how ketosis can truly help you modulate your cortisol levels and also modulate your stress levels so let’s get straight down into the scientific facts but before I dive into that make sure that you hit that little bell to turn on notifications so that you know whenever I go live or whenever I post a new video and if you haven’t already please subscribe to my channel so you can see all the videos that I do surrounding ketosis fasting and anti inflammatory living alright let’s get to it so the first thing that I want to talk about is blood sugar and the response with core salt and stress when it comes down to our blood sugar now this is gonna make a lot of sense so hear me out and every single time we consume carbohydrates it’s broken down into glucose this glucose triggers a response in the pancreas to secrete insulin this insulin then takes that glucose and puts it into the cell that’s where it’s burned for energy okay so once insulin is released our blood sugar drops so then the next thing that the body does is it creates a hormone known as glucagon and this glucagon releases carbohydrates that are stored in the muscles back into the bloodstream to keep the blood glucose supply level so what I’m ultimately getting at is then we have this constant up and down swing of blood glucose it causes stress within the body you see every single time we have a rapid increase in decrease our body’s end up secreting cortisol and we know that cortisol is the stress response within the body so yeah believe it or not eating carbohydrates and having these big fluctuations in blood glucose does actually stimulate your body to be in a stress state and produce more cortisol which we all know is not necessarily a good thing now when you’re in ketosis you’re not having these big swings and insulin you’re not having these blood sugar swings because you’re not consuming the carbohydrates and your insulin levels are nice and flatlined or at least very very subtle bumps you’re not having the big swings so that right then and there has a major effect on cortisol now having a positive effect on cortisol is one thing but it goes a lot further than that let’s start talking about the next thing that ketosis does when it comes down to stress not just within your body but also within your mind and that leads me into gamma-aminobutyric acid also known as a gaba you’ve probably heard of gavel before at least heard of it spoken as a supplement that you can buy but a lot of people don’t realize that the body already creates it it’s a very delicate process within the body see when it comes down to mental focus when it comes down to clarity when it comes down to sharpness and when it comes down to just feeling nice and calm and relaxed and efficient it’s a delicate balance between what is called glutamate and GABA Shi glutamate can actually turn into gaba so let me make sure that all this makes sense ketone bodies that are released when you are in ketosis encourage the conversion of glutamate to gaba amino butyric acid why does this matter and why is this important because it’s that delicate balance between those two that allow us to be focused for example glutamate is very exit or e glutamate is a stimulant glutamate encourages more stimulus and it causes our brain to be really crazy and wired it’s needed sometimes and it’s needed under times of stress but we don’t want it all the time because it can ultimately make us feel anxious and have a lot of brain fog now gamma-aminobutyric acid is the opposite it promotes relaxation okay it turns off the stimulation now glutamate turns in to gaba but we don’t want it all to turn into gaba we just want to be balanced so if we have glutamate levels here and GABA levels here we’re anxious we have brain fog and we’re stressed out but if we can take some of that glutamate and convert it to gaba and get us nice and balanced then we’re right where we should be we’re even-keeled we’re homeostasis we’re where we want to be ketones like when you’re in ketosis promote the synthesis of glutamate to gaba they bring you to that balance state and that’s extremely extremely extremely important because if you are not in that state you are even more stressed out and it turns into this vicious circle where it causes more of a cortisol response and can cause a serious problem within the body the two things that I mentioned on how ketosis affects stress are great we also have to understand how stress can inversely have an effect on ketosis you see when you’re stressed out you produce cortisol we know this by now cortisol is not all bad it has some good properties in fact it actually does quite literally burn fat but the problem is that it’s stores of visceral fat which is going to be the belly fat that we don’t want so that’s never a good thing but when we’re in ketosis we want to make sure that we’re keeping our insulin levels nice and low so what ends up happening when we get stressed out when we get stressed out this increase in cortisol encourages the body to break down proteins through a process known as gluconeogenesis when we break down proteins through gluconeogenesis we create sugar from protein so that means when you’re in ketosis and you’re doing your best to stay nice and stress-free and you’re trying to feel good and you’re keeping carbs out of the equation but then you do get stressed out it’s gonna cause the course all levels to elevate which are thereby going to recruit protein to turn into sugar which can kick you out of ketosis so it’s very important that you stick very strict to your ketogenic regimen so that your GABA levels are nice and set your insulin levels are low so you don’t have any instance of stress beyond what you already have with your daily life because stress will cause the body to break down protein into sugars we have to be careful of that so make sure you’re paying attention make sure you’re meditating make sure you’re doing what you can to modulate stress as much as possible in your life on top of what keto already does for you lastly I want to reference a study that helps you understand why ketosis might also help stress from oxidative level at the cellular level the Journal of Neuroscience published a study that took a look at the effect of ketones on the mitochondria when it comes down to reactive oxygen species you see whenever we go through any kind of metabolism or creating energy in the mitochondria there’s a fair amount of what is called the reactive oxygen species also known as oxidative stress more commonly this reactive oxygen species is very stressful in the body it causes glutathione to have to secrete it causes all kinds of things that have to be released just to neutralize those free radicals well what we found is that ketosis enhances cellular respiration within the mitochondria so this mitochondrial respiration means that it is more efficiently utilizing oxygen therefore you’re not having so much excess oxygen that is going around and oxidizing other things causing oxidative stress you see the common denominator here being oxygen oxidative stress so when we’re reducing that we reduce the stress again oxidative stress on the body which reduces the overall stress on the body which reduces the cortisol response which therefore reduces gluconeogenesis which reduces the sugars in the bloodstream that way kick you out of ketosis I know those a mouthful I know that was a lot to comprehend but if you have to rewind the last 1 minute and watch it again because it’s gonna make a lot of sense once you really really listen to it in short ketosis is gonna help you manage your stress it’s proven to do so beta-hydroxybutyrate is a powerful ketone body that can cross through the blood-brain barrier and give you a lot of mental clarity and a lot of focus but you have to make sure you’re strict in order to get the benefits that I dished out in this video as always make sure you keep it locked in on my channel if you have any ideas for future videos hit me in the comment section below and I’ll be sure to give them a good look to determine what’s next for you to see keep it locked in see you in the next video
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Do Keto Diets Increase Cortisol: Low Carb Diets & Stress- Thomas DeLauer…
Carbs and Blood Sugar:
As cells absorb blood sugar, levels in the bloodstream begin to fall – when this happens, the pancreas begins making glucagon, a hormone that signals the liver to start releasing stored sugar.
This interplay of insulin and glucagon ensure that cells throughout the body, and especially in the brain, have a steady supply of blood sugar. Simply, the carbs you consume turn into blood sugar and the more carbs you eat, the higher the levels of sugar you will have released as you digest and absorb your food.
Blood Sugar and Cortisol:
When your blood sugar rises too quickly and then drops rapidly, it causes a stress response to occur in your body and leads to the release of cortisol. The lack of carbs on a keto diet lessens the stress response from carb digestion, which reduces the amount of cortisol that is released.
Ketones and GABA:
Ketosis increases the availability of oxaloacetate, which means more glutamate is available for production into GABA – helps to synthesis glutamate into GABA. Increase in GABA production helps to reduce the excess firing of neurons in the brain, leading to better mental focus and reduces stress and anxiety (1)
High Stress on Keto/How Stress Affects Keto:
Continued/high stress means cortisol levels never have a chance to decrease, and this leads to a bunch of negative effects. But the main way it affects ketosis is by its main function, which is to elevate sugar levels in the blood through gluconeogenesis (2)
In Terms of ROS and Oxidative Stress:
*Ketones inhibit mitochondrial production of reactive oxygen species production following glutamate excitotoxicity by increasing NADH oxidation*
Ketones may mediate neuroprotection through antioxidant activity. Study/Review from the journal Neuroscience: A combination of bHB and acetoacetate decreased neuronal death and prevented changes in neuronal membrane properties induced by glutamate. Ketones also significantly decreased mitochondrial production of reactive oxygen species and the associated excitotoxic changes by increasing NADH oxidation in the mitochondrial respiratory chain, but did not affect levels of the endogenous antioxidant glutathione. Concluded that ketones reduce glutamate-induced free radical formation by increasing the NAD+/NADH ratio and enhancing mitochondrial respiration in neocortical neurons (3)
1) Yudkoff M , et al. (n.d.). The ketogenic diet and brain metabolism of amino acids: relationship to the anticonvulsant effect. – PubMed – NCBI. Retrieved from
2) Stress and Ketosis – The Nourished Caveman. (2014, November 25). Retrieved from
3) KETONES INHIBIT MITOCHONDRIAL PRODUCTION OF REACTIVE OXYGEN SPECIES PRODUCTION FOLLOWING GLUTAMATE EXCITOTOXICITY BY INCREASING NADH OXIDATION. (n.d.). Retrieved from /