All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Eric P Plaisance

Advisory Committee Members

Gordon Fisher

Drew Sayer

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Master of Science (MS) School of Education


Increased concentrations of circulating ketones via ketogenic diet (KD) have been associated with beneficial effects on a number of chronic conditions, including obesity, fatty liver disease, refractory epilepsy, and neurodegenerative diseases. KD has been associated with low sustainability and compliance, which has led to the creation and commercialization of exogenous ketones. However, past studies examining the effects of exogenous ketones in humans are very limited. In this study, we compared two different commercially available exogenous ketones, a ketone monoester (KME) and a ketone monoester-salt mix (KME+S), at two different doses (5 g and 10 g ketones). Fourteen healthy young adults completed five study conditions (CON, KME_10g, KME_5g, KME+S_10g, and KME+S_5g) in randomized order. Circulating concentrations of plasma glucose and R-beta-hydroxybutyrate (R-βHB) were measured using a handheld ketone meter at baseline before drink consumption, then again at 15, 30, 60, and 120 minutes after ingestion. At 120 minutes, acceptability and tolerability was assessed using a symptom questionnaire. KME_10g achieved R-βHB concentrations of ~2.4 mM and KME+S_10g reached ~2.1 mM βHB. The 5-gram doses for both KME and KME+S achieved R-βHB concentrations of ~1.2 mM. There were negative correlations between R-ßHB and glucose at the 30-minute time point for all ketone study conditions except KME_10g. Both exogenous ketones used in the current investigation drinks had similar iii tolerability, although decreases in appetite were more frequently reported for KME+S. The KME+S drink appears to be slightly more acceptable, due to the more frequently reported aftertaste for KME. Due to the expensive cost of KME products, consumers may find the KME+S drink to be more cost-effective than the KME drink. Additionally, lower doses may help to maintain cost-effectiveness without compromising desired outcomes when consuming exogenous ketones for general health purposes. Future studies should examine the magnitude and duration of repeated doses of exogenous ketones, as well as the effects of exogenous ketones in the fed state and in the context of different meal types to determine how consumers may utilize exogenous ketones on a daily basis.

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