How a Dream Metabolism Is Similar to an Electric Vehicle
Written by Stephen Anton PhD on July 23rd, 2020
Our bodies are amazing machines and can run off of two different fuel sources depending on need: glucose and fat (aka, ketones).
However, due to our usual eating patterns, most of us only run off one of these fuels (glucose).
Our Bodies Are Similar to Hybrid Cars
In reality, our bodies are most similar to a hybrid car, which can run off of both gasoline and electricity.
Similarly, we have two primary sources of energy: glucose and ketones (our super fuel).
Glucose is indeed a fuel we can use to move our bodies quickly for brief periods, but the energy doesn’t last, and we may start to feel hunger, fatigue, and trouble focusing.
This creates a vicious cycle where frequent stops at the pantry are required throughout the day unless our brain and body can switch to using ketones for energy.
A Dream Metabolism Is Similar to an Electric Car
In contrast to traditional gasoline-fueled vehicles, electric cars run very efficiently, have lots of power, and emit few waste products.
Driving the vehicle puts little stress on the engine and other critical parts, so the car experiences minor damage.
Additionally, the car can function at a high level all day long and only needs to charge (re-fuel) now and then.
Finally, electric cars get their energy from the rechargeable batteries inside of them, and thus their energy supply comes from within – it just needs to be activated.
This is why an electric car would be the closest analogy to what a dream metabolism looks like, being able to run off your body’s super fuel (ketones) all day long.
Most of Us Are Not Electric Vehicles
Unfortunately, most of us are not like electric cars, but more like a 10-year old vehicle that inefficiently uses fuel while emitting lots of metabolic waste products.
And those of us who are at a true metabolic disadvantage are more like diesel trucks emitting tons of exhausts and using large amounts of energy to function.
Therefore frequent stops at gas stations (or food pantries) are required.
Over time, these metabolic wastes can start to harm the function of our body’s organs and compromise our health.
Why We Can’t Run Exclusively on Glucose
You may wonder why the goal is not to be more like a Ferrari or your favorite sports car.
It is well known that the larger the engine, the faster the car will go.
The problem with most sports cars, however, is that they burn through fuel too quickly, and put a lot of stress on the car and its machinery.
To maintain performance, frequent stops at gas stations are required, but over time this rapid fuel use and frequent refueling can cause parts to rust and ultimately need to be replaced.
This is similar to what happens when your body runs exclusively off glucose as an energy source.
Ketones: Our Body’s Super Fuel
Although some types of gasoline are of higher quality than others, cars can run more efficiently and produce less waste off of electricity.
Similarly, our bodies have a super fuel source, ketones, which are more efficient at producing energy compared to glucose, and produce less metabolic waste than glucose.
Also, ketones are powerful signaling molecules that regulate the expression of genes and even reduce the inflammatory process.
“Do you want your body to run more efficiently with less waste?”
It is a choice you make every single day.