Getting to the Bottom of the Substrate Hierarchy

Keto Keto Keto! Everyone’s got an opinion. “Isn’t that for epilepsy?” 

“Yeah, I lost 30 lbs, but it’s too hard.”

“It’s not highly rated.”

And on and on. Here’s the thing; Keto isn’t a diet. Ketosis happens when you’ve used up all your other energy substrates. 

Here’s how it works. Our bodies have only four options for fuel. Alcohol, endogenous ketones like MCT oil (popular but overrated), carbs, and fat. These fuels are always and only burned in that order. 

Metabolizing alcohol is first priority because when we ingest it, our brain recognizes it as poison. Understandably we don’t want to store that. (Don’t worry. You don’t have to be a teetotaler for the rest of your life. I’m not.) Our body takes it straight to the liver where it’s converted to ethanol and pushed into the blood to be used immediately. 

Next comes ketone supplements. These pure substances require no digestion and will not be stored. That’s part of the reason you only want to use them in small doses. use only a couple of teaspoons, or you’ll be running to the bathroom faster than…. BTW you really don’t need them to get into ketosis. In fact they often give a false positive on a urine test strip. 

Ahh protein. We almost smile when we hear the word. We can always count on protein to be ok right? Not so fast. Major health experts like Dr Steven Gundry, Dr Joseph Mercola, and Dr David Perlmutter say we need to find the amount our bodies require for repair and lean mass, and stay right around that amount. More about that later. Protein can be stored but needs to be converted to carbohydrate first. 

Third and by far the most widely used are carbohydrates. They’re not evil, just very misunderstood. Our bodies can store them almost without limit and they’re always used before fat. Dr Nora Gedgaudas says carbs are like kindling. They burn quickly so we need to keep adding more to the fire. Most of us use primarily carbs for fuel so we need to eat every three to five hours during the day. The other thing about carbs is they notoriously trigger insulin. Too much insulin signaling over time is now causing worldwide health problems. Pretty much the reason I’m writing this book.

Then there’s my favorite, fat. Once your body gets used to using fat as it’s primary fuel, all kinds of fantastic thing start happening. The trick is, we have to use up all the above before we can reap all the benefits of a keto lifestyle. I’m here to tell you it’s absolutely worth it. 

Let me know what you think. I value your input!


The Journey Begins

I’m Judy Farmer and this is my Keto and Pilates blog.

If you don’t like reading, just download @Voice or use Control S on your Mac. Let it read my story to you for free. I use it all the time.

Our little farm meets it’s match.

I was food addicted as a twelve year old. How could that possibly have been my fault? As a sixth grader starting her period, my body needed nutrition. It needed good fat. It was precisely during that time in our country’s history that big farming had begun, and colossal food experiments were being performed on millions of people who trusted what they said on TV, what they read in magazines, and what they picked up off supermarket shelves. 

I remember after I went to college my family started using store bought milk instead of the beautiful fresh cow’s milk I was raised on. I grew up with pastured eggs and meat, raw milk, and fruit from trees that grew in the cow pasture. We used to eat so many mulberries our poop turned purple. We’d sit in our treehouse eating apples and sharing them with our horses and cows. 

Many things were very good for myself and my eight siblings. Milking cows didn’t create nearly enough income for our huge family. One of my Father’s extra jobs was selling seed corn. This was the beginning of one of the many powerfully negative yet money making effects of 20th century farming. At the time we had no idea how negative.

My Dad would haul large bags of chemically treated seed corn into the barn and stack them neatly in piles up to 6 feet high. Kids love to climb. We disobeyed Dad and climbed on the bags; walking on them with our dirty boots. I remember one of the bags ripping open. As the pink, yes I said pink hard kernels spilled out, a foreign chemical smell followed. I remember thinking, “That stuff isn’t corn.”

Turns out I was right. We were playing on genetically modified corn laced with toxins and carcinogens. Our happy little farm was about to change forever. 

It took some time but eventually our well was contaminated. All the surrounding farms went from using mineral rich well water to bottled water for cooking and drinking. We still use the well for all the animals. No-one talks about that. 

My precious Father was always the picture of health. Fit and trim. Strong and viral, with energy to work hard all day on the farm, then play hide and seek with us on summer nights. He was my superhero. He came down with cancer at age 70. Now he lives life close to home, chained to a colostomy bag. He weighs 120 lbs.

I could go on. We were the experiment. We are just now discovering the high price we’ve paid for flavor and convenience; for what us kids on the farm thought was better yummier food. I remember salivating watching TV commercials for Hawaiian Punch. I remember being so hungry as a skinny preadolescent ten year old. I’d open the frig to Wonder Bread and margarine. I could eat as much of that as I liked. The entire  time there were huge pitchers of cold raw whole milk right there, with an inch and a half of raw cream on the top. Right next to the margarine. 

In case you didn’t know margarine is one of a fake food products that have caused incalculable amounts of silent inflammation in our bodies over time. Now we know so called vegetable oils, fats from corn, soy, canola, and the like are actually seed fats. Then there’s those old favorites, Wesson and Crisco. All these aforementioned fats cause something called an inflammatory cascade. Yes it’s as bad as it sounds. This cascade silently kills off healthy cells. Then our bodies use the bed oils to build inferior cell walls in place of strong flexible ones made from healthy fats.

I’ve developed a habit of looking for good in bad situations. The good here is that the horrendous amount of illness our culture has begun to experience is now turning our health care system on it’s ear. Drugs aren’t working well. Nutritionists, biochemists, physicians, and health coaches like me are diving into research; reading any quality books we can get our hands on. We are finding solutions. 

The greater the contrast, the more amazing the solutions, the answer to prayer, the outcry to the universe, will be. The microcosms here are individuals like myself. 

I will share the most efficient advice compiled from hundreds of books; some of the authors disagreeing on minor points, but all agreeing on these tenents:

  • Healthy fat is meant to be our main source of nutrition.
  • All processed foods are to be avoided.
  • Grains, especially wheat are not the healthy staple we thought.
  • Fasting is good.
  • Exercise does not make you lose weight.
  • It is possible for vegetarians to use nutritional ketosis.

I am so grateful to have discovered this way of life. Living in ketosis has been the holy grail for me.

I had been food addicted most of my life. I had Eczema and Rosacea. I suffered from debilitating arthritis at 53. The range of motion in my right hip was gone. After i initiated  nutritional ketosis at 55, the arthritis literally went away. After getting a new hip joint, I feel and look like I’m in my thirties.

It’s absolutely worth it people.

Join me at the Great Pilates Now Studio every Monday night at 7:30 for free LCHF/Keto Support in Southeastern Michigan.