by Josh Perry
Being a pro BMX athlete and multiple brain tumor survivor, currently living with four tumors in my skull today and dealing with multiple concussions over the years, has led me to become passionate about a Ketogenic Dietand lifestyle. My journey with brain tumors started over 8 years ago, but it wasn’t until the third diagnosis in February 2017 that I got serious about adopting the Ketogenic lifestyle whole-heartedly.
That said, there were a lot of challenges with adopting a high-fat and low-carb diet before even transitioning to a full-on Ketogenic Diet. Beyond the typical obstacles of adjusting to this new way of eating/thinking/living for most of us, getting rid of the sugar addiction/cravings was a huge challenge that took me many years to overcome. Had I found snacks like KNOW Better Cookies in the beginning, I may have been able to stay on track without the sugar/carb binges every so often as I progressed with cutting carbs.
In retrospect, I was blindly cutting out carbs with the ignorance of not knowing I had to replace those carbs with even more fat than I was consuming already or not understanding there were sources of sweetness that didn’t have an effect on glucose levels in order to help me transition.
Now that I have learned how to adopt a proper Ketogenic Diet, and coach clients through their lifestyle journey, finding snacks that are accessible to everyone, especially those that travel as much and even more than I do, is a game changer for staying on track!
Testing can play an important role in the beginning stages of a Ketogenic Diet to learn how your body responds to specific foods and eating windows, but it is also very important to have this data for those with diabetes and seizures, as spikes in glucose could be very detrimental to the quality of life. For me, after following a high-fat and low-carb diet for over five years and a Ketogenic Diet for about a year or more now, I use my numbers as data for experimenting time to time and to see where I am at any given time.
KNOW Better Cookies are delicious, soft, chewy, gluten and grain free, and are Paleo- and Keto-friendly. The texture is unlike your typical cookie but it’s a combination of a cookie and brownie. As Lele from Ketofy.me put it, “It’s like if a cookie and a brownie had a baby -- this would be it.” So true, and they’re amazing!
One problem I had was my friends and I ate all the new KNOW Better Peanut Butter cookies before I decided to test my levels, so I had to use the double chocolate chip cookie for testing. That’s a good sign of how good the new Peanut Butter KNOW cookies are! ;)
The first thing I noticed when I looked at the nutritional facts was 26g total carbs and 19g “sugar.” Then I saw the note: “19g sugar? It’s not what you think ... 18g of those sugars are allulose, the sugar-free sugar.” I was still skeptical but pleasantly surprised to learn more about allulose. Allulose is not a sugar alcohol, it’s a rare sugar that has 1/10th the calories or other forms of sugar. Allulose doesn’t get digested or processed like regular sugar and it doesn’t have any impact on glucose or insulin levels.
My first bite into one of the double chocolate chip cookies was incredible. I couldn’t believe that such a sweet cookie, full of fat, could have no real effect on blood sugar levels.
Without further ado, here are my testing results!
1 pm: 2.9mmo/l (before consumption)
3 pm: 2.7 mm/dl (2 hours later)
1 pm: 95mg/dl (before consumption)
3 pm: 80mg/dl (2 hours later)
As you can see, my ketone levels dropped 0.2 mmol/l, as expected with even a keto-aligned meal, and my glucose actually dropped 15mg/dl! The glucose drop was a surprise, but knowing that ketones may help insulin’s sensitivity, and the fact that KNOW cookies are stacked with fat, it makes sense as to why that may have happened.
I started the first test in a fasted state (17 hours from my previous dinner) at 1 pm as well as after a 9 am fasted workout. I meant to test 30 minutes after consuming the cookie for both glucose and ketones but I didn’t realize I only had two glucose strips left. I did test ketones after 30 minutes and that’s the first sign of dropping 0.2 mmol/l, which isn’t much of a concern.
From my understanding, ketone readings may be lower in the mornings with glucose levels being higher due to some gluconeogenesis and the brain soaking up ketones while sleeping. It’s also my understanding the same scenario may go for well fat-adapted individuals, especially athletes if they test after a workout (probably even more so if done fasted) due to the muscles and brain soaking up the ketones for use during exercise and not having as many spill over into the bloodstream. This is most certainly my experience every time I test after a fast and a fueled or fasted workout, and is why I wanted to wait until the afternoon to test. I find my testing in the later part of the day gives me a good reading on what’s going on from what I have done leading up to that point and figured I would give it some time for my levels to normalize after my fasted workout.
So, there you have it! KNOW Better Cookies are delicious and as the testing results show, they are keto-approved.