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Move Over Keto Diet, Meet Ketone-IQ


Photo Credit: HVMN

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Fitness and health enthusiasts are constantly trying to find ways to improve their lives, feel their best, and achieve longevity in life. Many have turned to the keto diet, which turns fat into ketones and uses them for fuel instead of carbohydrates. This lifestyle is perfect for some but unrealistic for others. HVMN (Health Via Modern Nutrition Inc) aims to fill the gap with Ketone-IQ™️.

One big thing: There are two types of ketones – endogenous and exogenous. The endogenous ketones are produced inside the body. Exogenous ketones are introduced to the body via supplements. Prominent examples are ketone esters and ketone salts. 

  • There can be multiple benefits for those who choose to take exogenous ketones. For example, many have used them to help control their hunger while practicing intermittent fasting or working out in a fasted state. 
  • One of the biggest, which could attract those that use CrossFit for training, is the effect on overall performance. According to a study in the National Library of Medicine, ketones are 28% more effective as fuel than glucose. Additionally, there are no issues with sugar crashes or insulin spikes since there is no caffeine or sugar on the ingredients list. 
  • Finally, exogenous ketones stack with carbohydrates while delivering performance benefits. An analogy used by HVMN is that they are running on parallel highways in the body while working together to support mental clarity and provide clean energy. 

Without exogenous ketones, to achieve ketosis one has to eat a restrictive diet that limits carbohydrates and forces the body to make ketones for fuel. Another option is to practice intermittent, prolonged fasting.

  • Adopting a keto diet is not a simple process. Some people are sluggish, irritable, and have brain fog in the early days. These symptoms – and others – are called the Keto Flu. 
  • The Keto Flu ultimately subsides as the person adjusts to the keto diet, and many people have found benefits in following this lifestyle even while doing CrossFit training.  
  • Taking exogenous ketones can help with the transition to the keto diet. They provide instant energy and simultaneously serve as a cue for the body to begin using ketones as fuel.  

One important note: Ketones help put the body in a state of ketosis. They don’t replace other important factors, such as consistent exercise and avoiding processed, sugary foods or drinks. 

Some background: HVMN has a different role to play in helping athletes and everyday people alike achieve a state of ketosis with increased energy and mental clarity. After all, following a strict keto diet is not a solution for some athletes. This was the case with Michael Brandt and Geoffrey Woo, the co-founders of the company. 

  • Brandt and Woo, who both led large fasting groups in San Francisco, wanted the benefits of endogenous ketones. However, they specifically needed carbohydrates too while running marathons. Exogenous ketones were a way to get the added energy for their bodies without turning to caffeine or sugar-filled drinks. 
  • Brandt and Woo discovered that exogenous ketones were not readily at stores such as Whole Foods, but they learned that the Department of Defense had been working on making exogenous ketones more consumable so that members of the military would have access to the cognitive benefits without having to take something that tastes like jet fuel.

HVMN saw the needs of the biohacking community in Silicon Valley, and it had the original research from the projects created by Joe Belitski, a DARPA Program Manager. This created a big opportunity. 

  • A top biochemist, Dr. Latt Mansor, came on board as the research lead, and HVMN ultimately released Ketone 1.0 in 2017. The original product was a ketone ester, which had two different molecules.
  • HVMN began working with the endurance community, but it also kept its focus on supporting members of the military. The company recruited General Peter Pace (retired), former Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who took on the role of a senior advisor. 

Following the release of the first product, US Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) awarded HVMN with a Phase I STTR (Small Business Technology Transfer) so that the company could examine the effects of ketones on operators in hypoxic or low-oxygen environments. 

  • These studies included examining the effects of operators at altitude, in the mountains, or jets. Space was also a focus of the research, which was fitting with the creation of the Space Force. 
  • HVMN set out to determine if the exogenous ketones could provide the boost the military members needed and keep them performing at a high level, regardless of their area of operation. 
  • In 2019, the Department of Defense awarded HVMN with a $6 million contract so that the company could take the research to the next level. The company entered Phase 2 and expanded its research.
  • The benefits of exogenous ketones under stressors such as hypoxia remained a key focus, but HVMN also began working on “strategies to improve the taste, affordability, stability, and scalability of ketones.”

The here and now: All of the research and work has led to the release of Ketone-IQ, which became available in 2021. This new formula is WADA approved, so it can be used in competitive sports, and it includes 10g of ketones per serving. 

  • Ketone-IQ™️ differs from Ketone 1.0 in that it only has one molecule, R-1,3-Butanediol (BDO). This molecule is found in nature in avocado, coconut, honey, and mint among other natural sources. 
  • There were three important goals for the release of Ketone-IQ™️ – improving cost, palatability, and duration. Exogenous ketones have a reputation for being hard to ingest due to their flavor. HVMN believes that Ketone-IQ™️ solves this problem. 
  • In terms of cost, Ketone 1.0 had a price of $13.20 per 10g serving. With Ketone-IQ™️, the price is now $4 per 10g serving, which is a marked improvement. 
  • The latest product also keeps consumers in the optimal blood ketone range for a longer period. This is key when focusing on performance and recovery. 

The training plan: HVMN is new to the CrossFit space. The company, which features several athletes on its staff, has strong ties to the endurance world. There are champion cyclists and triathletes that have taken Ketone-IQ™️ before and during long training sessions. HVMN also fuels roughly 60% of the Tour de France. 

Training in CrossFit is not the same as preparing for an Ironman. The workouts have a higher level of intensity in a shorter amount of time. However, there are similarities on the nutrition side with more carbohydrates before and during training. 

  • HVMN wants to provide energy options for these athletes and fitness enthusiasts through Ketone-IQ™️ and other products. 
  • It doesn’t matter if they are doing a marathon row at the CrossFit Games, a quick WOD after the workday, or the Gauntlet at TYR Wodapalooza; the goal is to help people fuel their workouts cleanly and recover better after they are done. 
  • HVMN believes that Ketone-IQ™️ fits the CrossFit community. Members can take a serving before or during their workout in pursuit of improved performance. They can also combine a serving with their standard post-workout nutrition to gain improved recovery and sleep. 

Dr. Latt Mansor: “The current data suggests that exogenous ketones taken after exercise in conjunction with carbohydrate and/or protein exerts an ergogenic effect in post-exercise recovery. Ketone-IQ™️ is the most efficient way to increase blood ketone levels and it also eliminates the disadvantage of ketogenic diet by allowing stacking of multiple substrates and supplements to enhance the speed and quality of recovery period.”

The bottom line: There isn’t a one size fits all approach to finding the perfect way to fuel your body and achieve lifelong health. Some people respond better to certain lifestyles. 

HVMN is here to support those that want to achieve a state of ketosis while still using carbohydrates as part of their balanced diet. With Ketone-IQ™️, the company can make “nature’s super fuel” more accessible and palatable than ever before.

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