We have all heard about the silent killer known as inflammation. What we are not clear on is how to eliminate it. What if I told you it was actually pretty simple? You see many people have jumped onto the ketogenic life-style train hoping to lose weight, burning fat for fuel is appealing I must say. But the real benefit is lowered inflammation.
Here is how it works; higher ketones = lowered inflammation = less tension and less pain. Sign me up!
I was listening to a podcast the other day from a colleague of mine who happens to be an MD. He was speaking on the topic of RA (rheumatoid arthritis) and how he has seen a reduction of symptoms in his practice from the use of exogenous ketones and a ketogenic diet. Of course this is not to say it will cure RA, but a reduction of symptoms is nothing to turn your nose up at. It may not alleviate symptoms completely but there is a significant reduction and when you dramatically reduce inflammation you are holding the key to pain relief.
You can take a peek at the study done in 2015, published in Nature Medicine. The study showed BHB (beta hydroxy butyrate) blocks NLRP-3 (an inflammasome), an inflammatory signalling molecule, which signals the release of 2 interleukins. Interleukin 1 beta & interleukin 18, (they drive part of the immune system).
NLRP-3 turns on the inflammatory cascade, much like a domino affect. Ketones, or BHB specifically, damper down this effect. Other short chain butyrate does not, nor do the medium and long chain versions. You specifically get this effect with BHB. It is this specific molecule that acts as a signalling molecule to turn down inflammation.
Whats better is that this plays a role in ALL inflammatory diseases of the joints, not just RA.
Here is where it piqued my interest…It applies to irritable bowel and inflammatory bowel diseases as well. Many have found 50%-60% improvement as per studies over the past 10 years.
When BHB levels are high, the inflammation in the gut is lowered. Let that sink in for a second. can you feel the relief already?
With regards to cardiovascular health it plays a role as well. Interleukin 1 beta is a second signalling molecule that stimulates serum amyloid-a (SAA). This causes amyloidosis, which plays a very serious role in cardiovascular disease. More specifically the formation of blockages of the blood vessels resulting in cardiovascular disease.
When we turn this off, or at the very least turn it down, we have the ability to prevent those issues. Essentially turning down inflammation at a vascular level. Brilliant little bugger this BHB is eh? (How Canadian was that!)
Now I’m not a doctor but I do have enough knowledge to know that it was originally thought that this production was predominantly in the liver. News flash…It isn’t, it’s in the FAT cell.
There is a BMI dependency, SAA depends on the amount of fat cells we have. The more fat we carry the more SAA we produce. The bigger your fat cells the more SAA you have. When you go for your physical you can see this in your lab results. Take a look at your numbers next time your GP has you do annual labs. Look at your CRP (c-reactive -protein). SAA and interleukin 1 beta and 18 play a role in elevating CRP hormones, this shows your risk of heart disease. BHB dampers this.
You can also check your ESR (E-sedimentation rate), this is a hormone/ blood measure of inflammation.
Inflammation is the silent killer, I think we can all agree on that, but it doesn’t have to be. Since BHB is such a big deal in reducing and eliminating inflammation in the body, then why aren’t we getting more of it into our diets? Up until recently we have to rely on our body to produce it. Now we can put it directly into our bloodstream. I don’t know about you but I certainly jumped at the chance to check this out, and I assure you it did not disappoint.
Want to know what I did? Exogenous ketones with BHB –I like this brand. The best supplement I have come across for health in a long, long time. That’s a big statement considering I’m known for being pro-food and anti-supplement. I’m not a fan of anti-inflammatory drugs so when this fell into my lap I jumped at the opportunity to bring it into my clinical practice.
To grab yours check out this link (it’s not my link, I am not affiliated I just really like this product)
Did you know I am currently offering a carnivore mini session? For those trying to convert from ketogenic to carnivore or something in between. Looking to go over your blood work now that you are carnivore? We can do that too.
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