Follow up on Fasting Concepts
1. Fasting Mimicking Diet or Fasting
When we fast we go into what is known as a ketogenic state. This means that while we burn fat for fuel, we use ketones for high output tissues like the brain and the heart. In this state, the body functions VERY well and will mimic the response of a no-food fast as far as health benefits go. In this state, your carb intake will be very low and your body will move from operating as a chronic sugar burner to a fat burner.
2. Intermittent Fasting (IF)
With intermittent fasting, we pick a window of the day to eat. Start with an 8-hour eating window, e.g. 12 hours of not eating followed by 8 hours of eating (12-8) or 11-7 and only eat in that window. If you do this, you will automatically extend your nighttime sleep fast to 16 hours. You can then in time move your eating to a 6 hour or even 4-hour window and get 18-20 hours in for your fast. This can be done daily and will result in the fasting mechanisms kicking in and strengthening over time.
3. Broth Fasting
With broth fasting, we consume no food but only drink or sip broth for 24 hours or more. We should of course include lots of water during this time. I find this type of fasting VERY easy to do and have done it many times for up to 5 days without experiencing any issues.
Organic, non-GMO sourced broths are preferable, while homemade broths are the best. We use potassium (vegetarian) broth, bean broth, chicken, seafood, and bone (beef) broth – all very powerful! Not only will fasting benefits kick in when you do this, but it will also help with rebuilding your gut.
4. Full Fasting
Full fasting is the most powerful form of fasting we have seen. It consists of not consuming any solid foods or caloric drinks. Only consume lots of water, teas, some coffee if you really have to, and herb or citrus infusions.
The longest documented medically assisted full fast lasted a massive 382 days – that’s more than a year! The man in this study did not experience any medical issues, no hypoglycemia, and no nutrient or vitamin deficiency. Yes, it can be done. The man lost 275 lbs. As long as you have the extra fat available and use the appropriate professional support, you will not starve or DIE!
5. Alternate Day Fasting (eating)
I like this type of fasting a lot. There are 2 ways to do this:
a. Eat (feast) one day and fast the second using the Intermittent Fasting or Broth Fasting as described in options 2 and 3 above.
b. Feast one day and the next day, eat a 400 calorie meal for lunch and a 100 calorie snack whenever it suits you best.
You will benefit from this fast, and if you eat WELL, you will see some great healing and of course weight loss. It is interesting to note that weight loss with variable energy programs like this one reduces weight without setting the hormonal and brain chemistry stage for rebound weight gain or the YO-YO effect. It also has the best maintenance stats that I have ever seen or studied for keeping the weight off.
Once you are familiar with these options, you can mix and combine them as you see fit. I like to combine alternate day fasting and intermittent fasting to get two 42 hour fasts per week like this:
- Monday: 6 hour eating window = 12 noon to 6pm (12-6)
- Tuesday: Full fasting (maybe coffee but definitely lots of water)
- Wednesday: Back to 12-6 intermittent fasting
- Thursday: Full fasting
- Friday: 12-6 intermittent fasting
We have recently seen various studies that classify eating 500 to 800 calories per day as fasting. This is typically done in Gastric bypass diets. Studies show that the benefit from the surgery or only doing the diet are THE SAME regarding health, diabetes, and weight loss. Why risk the surgery? I would classify this as Pseudo Fasting.
Give Pseudo Fasting a try and let me know how it works for you.
Remember that there is always a flutter of weirdness that comes during the transitioning from burning sugar to burning fat. If you stick to it, it will get easier and easier throughout your fast and the next time you do it.
We can do better!