What Does Keto Mean?

what does keto mean

Keto is short for ketogenic.  Ketogenic diets are something that we recently have talked quite a bit about.  Make sure you take a good look at this detailed keto diet guide.  In it, we’ve discussed the types of keto diets, the benefits, the side effects, and what you need to eat for a successful diet plan. So, what does keto mean?

What we didn’t spend quite enough time on is what ketosis is and what happens to your body when you reach a state of ketosis.  This blog post is an attempt to right that wrong and help our readers leave feeling confident that they fully understand keto dieting.  Perhaps some of you are even ready to give it a shot!


At this point, you should know that ketosis a word describing the metabolic state in which our body draws its energy and power from ketone bodies in the bloodstream.  The main ketone bodies are acetoacetate and beta-hydroxybutyrate.  These bad boys are produced in our livers from fatty acids after fasting or extremely fierce dieting.  Some unintentional states of ketosis can be reached through prolonged alcoholism, starvation, and extended periods of intense exercise [1].

After fasting levels of starvation are reached, fats stored in our meaty tissues are released in to the bloodstream to provide the body with emergency energy sources.  This is how keto dieting became a thing.  The science behind ketosis has shown us that we’re able to burn off extremely resilient fat deposits without starving ourselves.  The fats released into the blood stream are the ketone bodies and our body can incinerate them for “emergency” fuel!

Controlled Ketosis: Keto Dieting

Controlled ketosis is what we do when we’re keto dieting.  This is the kind of ketosis that’s self induced and intentionally inflicted on our systems.  We continue to eat and provide our system with other nutrients needed to remain healthy.  We fight our way through keto flu and suffer through the 10 days of discomfort to maximize fat burn but don’t sacrifice our health while doing so.

Controlled ketosis is something that only those who are trying to lose weight practice.  For anybody who isn’t trying to burn off super stubborn fat deposits, keto dieting is 100% ignorable and you can move on to a different blog post entirely!  Those of you who have tried seemingly everything to lose the stubborn visceral fat deposits should practice controlled ketosis and memorize our guide [2].

Unintentional or Uncontrolled Ketosis

This is where things get super hairy.  Uncontrolled or unintentional ketosis is wildly unsafe.  If you have started to enter ketosis state without intentionally getting there, you need to drastically change your lifestyle.  Chances are you are drinking too much alcohol or starving yourself.  Uncontrolled ketosis is dangerous because you’re probably not monitoring your levels and aren’t providing your body with the other sustenance needed to live healthily.  Seek help if you feel you’ve unintentionally hit ketosis.

If you purposely have reached ketosis but you’re not able to break free of the keto flu clutches, there could be something wrong.  Similarly, if you can’t bring yourself to exit ketosis when it’s time, there could be something wrong.  In either scenario, you may have a medical condition and need to exit ketosis immediately.  Return to usual dieting and speak with a physician about what you experienced.


  1. Wajeed Masood; Kalyan R. Uppaluri.
    Ketogenic Diet
    Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2018 Jan-.
  2. Antonio Paoli,1,* Gerardo Bosco,1 Enrico M. Camporesi,2,3 and Devanand Mangar3,4
    Ketosis, ketogenic diet and food intake control: a complex relationship
    Front Psychol. 2015; 6: 27.
    Published online 2015 Feb 2. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2015.00027
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