For gaining the most out of keto diet, it is imperative to cut down on the carb consumption while maintaining the protein supply in your body at the same time. But people often make the mistake of consuming excess protein while on a low carb diet which brings them face to face with the question about the optimum amount of protein which is required by their body while it undergoes the process of ketosis.
Role of Protein In Ketosis
Protein serves as an essential building block of our lives providing us with the essential amino acids which are required for our proper functioning. Protein also aids in the function and regulation of tissues and organs making it imperative to direct a substantial amount of these complex molecules into our system. But when you are eliminating carbohydrate – an essential macronutrient group from your diet, you tend to opt for more protein-rich foods. However, excess consumption of protein can actually stall your ketosis process.
The Result of Excess Protein Consumption
Under the process of ketosis, our body is starved of its carbohydrate stores for breaking down fat and using ketones as a fuel. However, in the absence of carbs, your body breaks down proteins for retrieving necessary energy. Excess consumption of protein can lead to the conversion of amino acids into glucose by undergoing the process of gluconeogenesis, which is infamous for spiking the level of insulin and reducing the ketone level in your blood. Hence your body will switch out of ketosis to the usage of glucose in such a scenario even if you are following an extremely low carb diet. This can make you vulnerable to chances of keto flu which is a common side effect of toggling between the two energy systems.
Best Sources Protein While On A Low Carb Diet
- Fatty wild fish such as salmon, tuna, and sardines.
- Fatty cuts of organic and grass-fed meat such as bison, beef, and lamb as they are rich in macronutrients and favorable fat which can usher in great health benefits.
- Liver meat which is a highly nutrient-dense option.
You need to ensure that you are keeping your protein intake limited to whole and natural foods and not processed meats which contain high quantum of sugar and other carbs. You can refer to this review at https://www.ketovale.com/best-low-carb-protein-powders/ to know more about the optimum intake of protein and the best brands you can choose during your low carb diet journey.
Monitoring Your Protein Intake
You can take help of various websites which assist in calculating macros based on your height, weight, calorie requirements and physical activity for revealing the amount of protein which is required by your body. The amount of protein which comes out is the amount you need to start with although it might require some tweaking initially. Although excess consumption of protein does not affect some people, for others it becomes mandatory to keep the protein consumption at 15% or less for staying in ketosis by preventing the occurrence of gluconeogenesis. This will usually fall around 1.5 to 2.0 grams of protein per kilogram of lean bodyweight or 0.7 to 0.9 grams of protein per pound of lean bodyweight.
You need to find out your body percentage and multiply it by your weight to reduce the amount of fat in your body. Your lean body mass is the difference between your weight and the amount of body fat. Thus, the amount of protein which should be consumed is 0.8 times your lean body mass (in pounds). Tackling of ketone levels is another method of keeping your protein intake within limits apart from tracking your protein macros.