Ketone body supplement label claims: what supplement has been supplemented?

  • D Da Costa University of KwaZulu-Natal
  • V Bangalee
  • K Subban
  • R Naidoo University of KwaZulu-NatalDiscipline of Biokinetics, Exercise and Leisure Sciences


Background: There is a keen interest in performance-enhancing supplementation and the associated benefits, despite reports of incorrect label claims made by manufacturers and the questionable efficacy of the supplements. The use of ketone body supplements as a source of fuel during exercise and sporting performance, in particular, is of interest to sportspeople. By increasing blood ketone body levels, with an accompanying decrease in blood glucose, may indicate a state of nutritional ketosis, whereby the body no longer relies on glucose metabolism but rather the metabolism of ketone bodies. This could be beneficial for long, slow steady-state endurance exercise.

Discussion: There are numerous ketone body supplements on the market manufactured in South Africa and internationally. However, unlike medicines, the sports supplementation industry is poorly regulated. Furthermore, ketone body supplementation with regard to its effects on improving exercise and athletic performance is still unconvincing.

Conclusion: Within the ever-changing sports supplementation industry, ketone body supplements are being used despite controversies regarding the accuracy and scientific merit of label claims. The ingredients and their quantities, as well as the performance benefits, need to be objectively validated.

Author Biography

R Naidoo, University of KwaZulu-NatalDiscipline of Biokinetics, Exercise and Leisure Sciences

Discipline of Biokinetics, Exercise and Leisure Sciences


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