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Ketone Strips 101

Article by: Karoline of Skinny Keto

Ketone test strips are a common tool to find out whether you are in ketosis or not. Learn how they are used to support your keto lifestyle!

Ketosis is the basis of a ketogenic diet. One of your goals should be to achieve the state of ketosis and begin burning fat for fuel.


A common tool to find out whether you are in ketosis or not are ketone test strips. They measure the amount of ketones that is found in your urine. They are an easy non-invasive way to know if your body is producing ketones. Especially when starting out on a keto diet they can show you that you are on the right track. They can be purchased online or at any local pharmacy. Sometimes they are even covered by your health insurance - just ask your pharmacist!


Many keto beginners try to achieve high ketone numbers by adding copious amounts of fats. In some cases, this deep ketosis is needed when using a ketogenic diet for medical purposes such as epilepsy treatment or to improve cognitive function. For weight loss however, higher numbers are not necessarily better.


In the context of weight loss, it is most important to realize WHERE the fat for ketosis needs to come from! We want as much BODY FAT as possible to be used to create ketones! Only if we burn our fat stores, will we lose weight.


Here are 7 tips on how to read ketone test strips and what it really means when it comes to the ketogenic diet and optimal weight loss:

Ketone test strips are a common tool to find out whether you are in ketosis or not. Learn how they are used to support your keto lifestyle!

Any reading is good!

Any positive reading for ketones is good for weight loss! You should be burning as much body fat as possible to lose weight. You will lose the same amount of weight no matter if you have a “small” or a “large” reading on your test strip


Less is more...

More ketones do not equal more weight loss! You can be in deep ketosis and gain weight. You can also be in a lower range for ketones and lose weight and inches like crazy!


Ketone test strips are a common tool to find out whether you are in ketosis or not. Learn how they are used to support your keto lifestyle!

Water & Colour (Part 1)

Darker colors do not indicate dehydration unless you are a diabetic and are approaching ketoacidosis. Drinking more water will fill your bladder. A full bladder will give you lower reading as the ketone concentration is lower.




Water & Colour (Part 2)

Instead, darker colors may mean your body is not very efficient at using all the ketones it is making, or you just consumed a higher-fat meal, or you may have taken ketone supplements such as exogenous ketones or MCT oil. Once your body gets better at utilizing ketones for energy, your readings will be lower as the ketone strips only registers the excess ketones that are NOT used for energy.


Ketone test strips are a common tool to find out whether you are in ketosis or not. Learn how they are used to support your keto lifestyle!



Awareness of foods and ketone level

Higher fat meals and MCT oil/ketone supplements will give you higher ketone numbers. If you eat more carbohydrates (more veggies and fruit), your ketones will be lower.



Ketone test strips are a common tool to find out whether you are in ketosis or not. Learn how they are used to support your keto lifestyle!


Ketone Fluctuation

Ketone numbers fluctuate throughout the day. These fluctuations depend on your body’s demand for ketones as well as on your current ketone production. Using your ketone strips in the morning, will generally give you lower readings and will change after your first meal.



Fitness Fuel

Exercise often provides lower readings on your test strips as your body has a higher demand for ketones during exercise.

Ketone test strips are a common tool to find out whether you are in ketosis or not. Learn how they are used to support your keto lifestyle!

Instead of concentrating on high ketone numbers, concentrate on the results you can see on the scale and in the way your clothes fit! Also concentrate on eating a balanced ketogenic diet that fits your goals with lots of veggies to get as much nutrition in though food, healthy fats to fuel your body, and an adequate amount protein to prevent muscle and hair loss!

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