People use Keto Strips to check whether they are on Ketosis or not. There are two varieties of keto strips: blood and urine. This article discusses how good keto strips are, how to use them, and which of the two varieties are more accurate.
Ketones are produced by the body as a source of energy while on Ketosis. The ketones are produced when the body breaks down fats. While ketone development in the body is considered an indicator of weight loss, it can also develop when insulin levels are low.
For people with diabetes, it is crucial to measure the level of ketones in their bodies. If the body produces a high level of ketones, this could cause acidity in the blood and serious organ illnesses.
What Is The Process Of Ketosis?
When you are following the Ketogenic, it is extremely important to maintain Ketosis. Ketosis is a state in which your body uses fat instead of carbs as an energy source. Therefore, Ketosis will only occur once the consumption of carbohydrates decreases, limiting the supply of glucose in the body, which is the main energy source for the cells.
Once the glucose levels in the body drop, it has no choice but to search for a different energy source. The ketogenic diet is the most effective way of entering Ketosis, and you will need to limit your daily carb intake to twenty to fifty grams and will need to take in fats from healthy sources such as :
- Healthy oils (Olive oil, Coconut oil)
It is also important for the user to moderate the consumption of proteins, as protein can be converted into glucose if consumed in high quantities, hindering your transition to keto strips.
Another way of entering Ketosis faster is through intermittent fasting. Intermittent fasting involves limiting the intake of food for eight hours per day and fasting for sixteen hours. The urine, blood, and breath tests will show whether you’ve entered Ketosis through intermittent fasting or not by showing the number of ketones produced by the body.
Some symptoms will indicate that your body has entered the state of Ketosis:
- Frequent Urination
- Decrease in appetite and hunger
- Dry Mouth
Urine Keto Test Strips
The urine keto strips are the cheapest and easiest to find if you are on Ketosis or not. These strips were initially developed for type-1 diabetes patients to determine the risk of diabetic ketoacidosis, a life-threatening disease.
You can easily purchase Keto strips online or from a pharmacy. However, the strips usually last three to six months before they expire, so you need to use them efficiently. To check the level of ketones in your urine, test every day.
You can also pick a particular time for testing, after a meal or early in the morning. This is how you can use these strips:
- Wash your hands.
- Take a sample of urine in a small bottle or container.
- Stick the immersive end of the Keto strip in the urine for few seconds, and then take it out.
- Wait for the strip to change color; the amount of time this will take is usually mentioned on the pack.
- There is also a color chart on the package.
- Compare the color of your strip with the chart.
- Dispose the strip appropriately and thoroughly wash your hands.
The darker the color of the strip, the higher is the level of ketones in your body.
Blood Keto Test Strips
Keto blood strips were also originally designed for type-1 diabetes patients. These blood strips are a reliable and accurate way of knowing your ketosis level. While keto blood strips are easily available as urine strips, you need a meter to measure the strips.
Although glucose and Keto strips differ, people still use Keto strips to measure their level of glucose. Blood strips last longer than urine strips, on average twelve to eighteen months. This is how you can use blood Keto strips:
- First, wash your hands.
- Put a needle in the lancet, and follow the instructions.
- Put a blood Keto strip in the meter.
- With the help of the lancet, draw a drop of blood.
- Let the blood and strip come in contact.
- Then, check the results.
- Appropriately dispose of the lancet and the needle.
The level of ketones that is acceptable is 0.5 to 3 millimeters.
Accuracy Of The Keto Strips
Urine Keto strips are generally accepted as a good measuring tool, especially when you are just in the first few weeks of Ketosis. During the first few weeks, your body cannot efficiently use ketones as a source of energy, which is why you will urinate often.
However, the longer you stay in Ketosis, the more your body adapts and soon starts using ketones as an energy source. If your body has been in a state of Ketosis for months, the strips might indicate just a few traces of ketones in the urine.
This information often misleads people, and they think that they are no longer in Ketosis. For even more accurate results, blood strips are recommended. However, blood strips are more expensive than urine ones.
Ketone Test Results
- Under 0.66 mm – Normal ketone level.
- 0.6 to 1.5 mmol/L – This level indicates that the production of ketones is higher than normal. You will need to test again later on, to see whether the level has dropped or not.
- 1.6 to 3 mmol/L – A high ketone level can significantly increase the risk of Ketoacidosis. It is recommended you visit a doctor in such a situation.
- Higher than 3 mmol/L – This is when the ketones are at an extremely high level. This is an emergency, and you will require urgent medical care.
How To Choose Keto Test Strips?
There are many manufacturers in the market that produce blood and urine Keto strips. These strips are available online, in drugstores, supermarkets, and pharmacies. A popular brand of Keto strip is Ketostix.
Doctors also prescribe keto urine strips to patients. However, the best way to select Keto strips is to ask a doctor or a healthcare provider. The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2019 issued a warning not to purchase Keto strips from online stores and other marketplaces.
The FDA also warned against using or purchasing Keto strips that do not have the authority of being sold in the United States. Below the standard Keto strips provide inaccurate results. People can interpret these results as a sign of an illness.
Tips For Accurate Test Results
Urine keto strips are not as accurate as blood Keto strips. The result of urine testing depends on how diluted the urine is. However, if you choose the urine Keto strip, then follow these steps to get a reliable test result:
- Before testing, check the expiration date on the packet.
- A kit that is expired gives incorrect results.
- Store the Keto strips in an air-tight container.
- Moisture or long exposure to air can harm the strips.
- Either do the test after dinner or early in the morning. Studies indicate these two times are the best for testing your ketone level.
- If you cannot distinguish the color, ask for help from someone.
Signs That Your Body Is On Ketosis
Below we have listed down some signs and symptoms that will help you determine whether you are on Ketosis or not.
A Rise In Ketones
Having a high level of ketones in the blood is a sign that your body has entered the process of Ketosis. Doctors may also take breath and urine samples to test the ketone level in the blood. However, these tests are slightly less reliable than blood tests.
Loss In Weight
Some experts have suggested that the low-carb diet is more effective in cutting body weight. They believe that low-carb diets are better than low-fat diets when it comes to cutting excess weight. So, when people are in the ketosis stage, they will lose weight in the long term.
A meta-analysis that was conducted in 2013 examined the findings of numerous controlled trials. The analysis concluded that the keto diet would help people lose more weight than low-fat diets in the long term.
However, if you are experiencing weight loss just a few days into Ketosis, that is probably because of a lack of water. True weight loss through Ketosis takes weeks to occur with keto strips.
The process of Ketosis may cause some people to be thirstier than usual. This happens due to water loss that occurs in the body during Ketosis. However, dehydration in the body can also occur due to a rise in the level of ketones.
Thirstiness can cause a few complications, and many studies point towards dehydration being a major side effect of Ketosis. Sometimes dehydration can also increase the risk of kidney stones in your body.
The solution for thirstiness and dehydration is simple, drink as much water as possible. If the dehydration and other symptoms get too serious, visit a doctor.
Keto strips are an important tool and help you find out whether you are on Ketosis or not. The keto diet is all about maintaining the state of Ketosis. In this article, we have discussed the usefulness of the keto strips, their variety, and how you are supposed to use them.
However, we would like to caution our readers and advise them to seek medical help before they test their ketone level independently.