Will too much PROTEIN kick you out of KETOSIS?September 8, 2021
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There is a fear that too much protein will kick you out of ketosis. Today, let’s talk about how much protein will actually kick you out of ketosis, and whether you should be scared of this myth in the first place.
Firstly, I want to preface this: Everybody is different and can have varying levels of insulin resistance. If you’re not sure what insulin is and whether you’re resistant to it, then listen on.
Over the past however many years of your life, carbs have probably been a pretty big part of your life. Fat was demonised for a long time, so we looked to carbs for energy, and protein to build muscle. Then, when keto came around, we found it pretty hard to cut out all the fat-free, sugar-laden replacements we’d become so used to.
So while keto became popular, we still have a high protein mindset. So, does high protein kick you out of ketosis? Well, that comes down to what’s called insulin.
So what is insulin? And why is it a problem?
Insulin isn’t a problem. In fact, we need insulin in our body to control many different biological factors. The problem is when we’re exposed to excess carbohydrates, our body has to release increasingly larger quantities of insulin to control our blood sugar levels.
The main role of insulin is to keep your bodies blood sugar levels in a safe range. It’s also the hormone that will tell your body to either store energy, or not.
So, when insulin levels are high, or we’ve become desensitised to the hormone insulin, it becomes harder and harder to lose weight or tap into our energy storage system, otherwise known as fat.
The main food group that will cause you to release insulin is carbs. The second food group that can cause you to release insulin is protein. Specifically, when both of the macronutrients are consumed by themselves, or other words without fat, the uptake of energy from carbohydrates and some types of protein can cause a rise in blood sugar levels, which tells your pancreas to release insulin, and the cycle begins.
But what happens if we pair protein with fat? Well, protein has a very small insulinogenic response, meaning that while pure protein can spike blood sugar levels, it’s never spiked very high. When you pair protein with fat, that insulinogenic factor becomes next to nothing.
So, in short, when protein is paired with fats, protein won’t kick you out of ketosis. So if you’re worried that you’ve eaten too much steak, and it might kick you out of ketosis, it’s not something you should be worried about.
Will too much protein that isn’t paired with fat kick you out of ketosis? Sure! The only protein that I can think of that’s almost void of fats is whey protein powder. But here is the caveat. When do you usually drink whey protein powder? Post-workout right? Well, post-workout is when you’re actually the most sensitive to insulin, and is probably the best time to be kicked out of ketosis.
Why? Well post-workout, your muscles are primed for energy. When insulin is elevated, it tells your body to store energy, and post-workout is where you’ll be storing most of that energy into your muscles.
So unless you’re doing a really strict version of keto for medical reasons, eating too much protein isn’t going to hurt you. Just don’t go drinking protein shakes every waking hour, and you’ll be totally fine.
If you want to learn more about the ketogenic diet and learn how to keep things simple, We’re running the 5 Day Carb Cleanse in January. The 5-day carb cleanse is just saying no to carbs for 5 days in a row, putting you back into ketosis after the holiday season.
There are plenty of other drawn out 28 day, or 30-day challenges, but the 5-day carb cleanse is designed to get you back into ketosis quickly, without all the nonsense.
If you’re a no-nonsense kinda person like me, I think you’ll love the 5-day carb cleanse. Click on the link in the description to sign up today. You can even give it a trial run before January to see what you think. In the meantime, stay healthy and I’ll see you next week.