0

votes

what is the difference between free fatty acids and ketones?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created September 11, 2012 at 8:00 PM

i am trying to get into ketosis for therapeutic reasons. i am eating about 75% fat, 15% protein, 10% veggie carbs and just started taking some high MCT coconut oil each day. i do not believe i am in ketosis but i must be burning free fatty acids for most of my energy at this point, since i have been VLC for about 3 weeks and recently am keeping my protein intake limited.

what is the difference between FFAs and ketones and how each is metabolized? to be a fat burning beast, are you burning FFAs or ketones or both?

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on September 12, 2012
at 11:36 PM

cont..."After the diet has been changed to lower blood glucose for 3 days, the brain gets 25% of its energy from ketone bodies.[4] After about 40 days, this goes up to 70% (during the initial stages the brain does not burn ketones, since they are an important substrate for lipid synthesis in the brain)." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ketone_bodies

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on September 12, 2012
at 11:35 PM

cont..."After the diet has been changed to lower blood glucose for 3 days, the brain gets 25% of its energy from ketone bodies.[4] After about 40 days, this goes up to 70% (during the initial stages the brain does not burn ketones, since they are an important substrate for lipid synthesis in the brain)."

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on September 12, 2012
at 11:35 PM

you are correct about the brain Amy (at least according to wiki); "The brain gets a portion of its energy from ketone bodies when glucose is less available (e.g., during fasting, strenuous exercise, low carbohydrate, ketogenic diet and in neonates). In the event of low blood glucose, most other tissues have additional energy sources besides ketone bodies (such as fatty acids), but the brain does not."

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on September 12, 2012
at 01:26 PM

@miked - HA! Thanks...feel free to add anything important. I've learned a lot from you!

510bdda8988ed0d4b0ec0b738b4edb73

(20898)

on September 12, 2012
at 03:19 AM

Came here to be the chem nerd but you beat me to it. I won't even get snarky about the difference between a COOH group and the CO group.

1296732e87fbf070566afe641ca0c089

on September 11, 2012
at 11:19 PM

The Mark Sisson episode is #5 in that series. Thanks for the tip!

  • 76211ec5301087de2588cfe3d6bccba9

    asked by

    (1178)
  • Views
    6.5K
  • Last Activity
    1285D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

1 Answers

4
Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on September 11, 2012
at 08:37 PM

To be "a fat burning beast," yes, you are running on fatty acids and ketones. Ketones are produced as a byproduct of fatty acid metabolism. I'll get a little geeky with the biochem here for a sec: when you burn fatty acids, you produce so much acetyl CoA that it overwhelms the system and gets made into ketones, which are a different form of fuel than fatty acids. Whether or not you can measure your ketone levels via the urine test strips depends on how effective you are at using them, and even how hydrated you are. (If you see very dark purple on the strips, you're probably a little dehydrated.) As time goes on and your body gets very fat/keto-adapted, you'll "spill" fewer ketones out via your urine, sweat, and breath, and will actually burn them more effectively as fuel instead.

Mark Sisson did a fantastic job of explaining all things ketone/fatty acid burning on an episode of Jimmy Moore's Ask the Low Carb Experts podcast. I think the ep was called Ketosis: Devil or Angel. (OR something like that. Very well worth a listen!)

Certain tissues can use fatty acids, and some can't. The brain doesn't do well with fatty acids but loves ketones. (Someone correct me if I'm wrong...I might be. The brain needs fats for structure...loaded with fats...but as a fuel, I think it runs mainly on ketones and glucose.)

510bdda8988ed0d4b0ec0b738b4edb73

(20898)

on September 12, 2012
at 03:19 AM

Came here to be the chem nerd but you beat me to it. I won't even get snarky about the difference between a COOH group and the CO group.

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on September 12, 2012
at 11:35 PM

cont..."After the diet has been changed to lower blood glucose for 3 days, the brain gets 25% of its energy from ketone bodies.[4] After about 40 days, this goes up to 70% (during the initial stages the brain does not burn ketones, since they are an important substrate for lipid synthesis in the brain)."

1296732e87fbf070566afe641ca0c089

on September 11, 2012
at 11:19 PM

The Mark Sisson episode is #5 in that series. Thanks for the tip!

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on September 12, 2012
at 11:36 PM

cont..."After the diet has been changed to lower blood glucose for 3 days, the brain gets 25% of its energy from ketone bodies.[4] After about 40 days, this goes up to 70% (during the initial stages the brain does not burn ketones, since they are an important substrate for lipid synthesis in the brain)." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ketone_bodies

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on September 12, 2012
at 01:26 PM

@miked - HA! Thanks...feel free to add anything important. I've learned a lot from you!

543a65b3004bf5a51974fbdd60d666bb

(4493)

on September 12, 2012
at 11:35 PM

you are correct about the brain Amy (at least according to wiki); "The brain gets a portion of its energy from ketone bodies when glucose is less available (e.g., during fasting, strenuous exercise, low carbohydrate, ketogenic diet and in neonates). In the event of low blood glucose, most other tissues have additional energy sources besides ketone bodies (such as fatty acids), but the brain does not."

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!