Today Christa welcomes expert practitioner Dr. Jerome Craig to discuss nutritional Ketosis. Before jumping into the topic Dr. Craig discusses his profession and what it means to be a functional medicine practitioner. He explains functional medicine as getting to the root cause of something. Instead of treating a condition, he looks for the root cause which can range from nutrition, lifestyle, genetics, and more.
Dr. Jerome Craig defines Nutritional Ketosis as switching yourself from being a sugar burner (which most of us are) to a fat burner. He says many people misunderstand this as being low-carb or high-fat, (and while those are true to some extent) he says nutritional ketosis is more about switching to a state where you’re burning fat as your primary fuel and creating ketones that will fuel the brain and the body.
Many of us lean on carbs as a primary fuel because they’re accessible and fast, but nutritional ketosis is about switching our body over (which obviously doesn’t happen overnight). It’s about going from burning carbs to burning our fat stores. Dr. Jerome Craig cites Dr. Stephen Phinney and Dom D’Agostino as two major champions of Ketosis who have been bringing the concept more mainstream. Additionally, Jimmy Moore has been a long-time advocate of ketosis and its positive health benefits for people with type 2 diabetes. Meanwhile, other scientists are using Ketosis to combat dementia, cognitive degeneration, and even certain types of cancer.
For the average person, Ketosis has many benefits including easier digestion, sleeping better, increased energy, and resetting our microbiomes which reduce (or eliminates) many of our cravings. Those positive results don’t come immediately and require some build-up to get to, but Dr. Craig goes on to say that “there’s no such thing as failure if you learn.” One thing he cautions about ketosis (as with all fitness) is to avoid comparing yourself to others. Results vary, and everyone’s body reacts differently, so there is no set path.
When discussing the downsides of ketosis, Dr. Jerome Craig explains that often people think to get into ketosis that they have to eat fatty foods which mean that they lose out on a lot of other foods that are healthy for us like veggies and fruit. He also says that the transition from carb-burning to ketosis results in losing water weight and minerals, which if not properly paired with vegetables, can result in muscle cramps and digestive problems.
In the end, it all depends on the person and their goals, but Ketosis is a viable nutritional plan for someone starting their weight loss journey. If you want to learn more about the details of ketosis check out the full podcast below.