The popularity of low-carb Keto diets – which deplete sugar reserves to burn more fat – is soaring. But if you struggle to pinpoint where you’re adding calories, could this breathalyser help you find peak fat-burning?
Whether you want to eat more healthily, optimise a diet plan or super-boost your exercise programme, tracking your metabolism and ketones can help.
When glucose is not available, the liver starts to produce ketone bodies as an energy source and the body begins to dissolve fat.
That is called ketosis. Higher levels of acetone in the breath indicate more ketone bodies and a higher pace of fat burning.
There are three ways to detect and measure ketones in the body – breath acetone, urine test strips or blood testing.
We put the pocket-sized gadget – Ketoscan Lite – and its mobile phone app, to the test.
What is Ketoscan Lite?
It is a device that monitors the rate of fat-burning in your body via your breath.
Ketoscan Lite measures ketones (acetone) in your breath to provide an accurate real-time reading which shows the ketosis state of your body and the speed it is burning fat.
Readings appear on an LED display on the breathalyser. You then key that number into a mobile phone app which shows the speed at which your body is burning fat.
How does it work?
You click a plastic mouthpiece onto the front of the handheld gadget and blow into the mouthpiece for just two seconds.
Within a minute a result is recorded on the digital display. When you’ve added that number to the Ketoscan Lite app, it tells you what your metabolism is doing.
It allows you to see the instant effect of what you’ve just eaten or the impact exercise is having on your body. You can then tailor your diet or exercise plan accordingly.
Here’s an example of a reading taken before I’d had breakfast, having fasted since 10pm the night before.
Then after drinking a cup of tea with two sugars and milk (well nobody is perfect!) and eating a piece of bread, butter and jam, I used the breathalyser again.
Inputting the number into the app, it instantly showed the effect of breakfast on my body – with the reading moving to below the level of optimum fat-burning.
Of course, this is just a simple example and the numbers will fluctuate across the day as you eat and exercise as normal.
High readings are not always good – the optimum level for weight loss is 10-40 PPM.
If the reading is higher, unnecessary ketones are accumulating excessively, which is not beneficial.
But AlcoDigital, who make the device, say it can help inform diet and exercise choices.
Via the app, users can monitor their own personalised goals and check progress.
For athletes on a strict keto diet, for example, burning fat too fast can become a problem.
Cutting back on carbs and replacing them with fats can be quite a drastic change for many, so it’s a good way to monitor your body’s reaction and the way your metabolism adapts.
Pros of the device
- I was amazed at how the real-time information showed how my metabolism reacted across the week to both diet and exercise. The immediacy and accuracy of results really impressed me.
- Anyone can use this device – and the app – they’re very easy to set up.
- And I see how it could really motivate those who are committed to particular fitness or health goals.
- It’s a piece of tech with very sensitive settings. So you have to do a test ‘blow’ each time you start which I found a bit annoying after a week of using it.
- The cost – it’s £99.95 so is a health investment rather than a fad piece of kit.
- Also it’s vital to be aware keto is not recommended for people with renal disease, or those who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
And, above all else, it is important to listen to your body and find a consistent level that sits comfortably with you.
For more information on keto diets and fasting weight loss click here.