The Fasting 'Advantage' – Part 14

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What is the advantage of using a strategy based on intermittent fasting versus simple dietary changes alone – such as the LowCarb HighFat diets that we prefer? There are several good ones.Effectiveness_vs_Simplicity

Reason #1 – Simplicity

Simplicity.

When I started out my clinic, I tried to persuade people to adopt the LCHF diet. I was doing this for people of all ages, of all nationalities. It is difficult enough for a well educated English speaking, computer literate person to adopt a strict LCHF diet. This is hard given all the conflicting advice flying around the internet and the airwaves.

We would tell people to go Low Carb and find food diaries full of whole wheat bread and plates of pasta. Many people honestly did not understand the diet at all. I spent lots of time and grey hair trying to change their diets, but many people simply did not understand. Furthermore, their diets had not significantly changed in 40 years, and they were having a lot of trouble changing it.

Since the Low Fat approach had been indoctrinated into them for the last 20 years, it was hard for people to understand how to eat a diet high in natural fats, rather than the low fat fare they were used to. Using a completely different approach such as fasting was much easier for people to understand.

Fasting itself, is so simple that it can be explained in two sentences. Eat nothing including sugars or sweeteners. Drink water, tea, coffee or bone broth. That’s it. Even with this simple method, we (Megan, not actually me anymore) spend hours explaining ‘how to’ fast.

The most obvious benefit to simplicity, though is demonstrated by the startlingly simple graph above. The simpler, the more effective. Amen.

Reason #2 – Cheapwe-love-cheap-sheep

While I may prefer patients to eat organic, local grass fed beef and avoid the white bread and processed foods, the truth is that these foods are often 10 times the cost. Some people, simply put, cannot afford to eat that well.

This is due to the distorting effect of government subsidies on cost of food. Since grains enjoy substantial government subsidies, it is far cheaper to make something out of flour than whole foods. This means that fresh cherries cost $6.99/ pound and an entire loaf of bread will cost $1.99. Feeding a family on a budget is a lot easier when you buy pasta and white bread.

But that does not mean they should be doomed to a lifetime of type 2 diabetes and disability. Fasting is free. Actually, it is not simply free, but it actually saves people money because you do not need to buy any food.

MealsAwayFromHome

From The Atlantic “Cheap Eats” March 8, 2013

Reason #3 – Convenience

While I may advise people to always eat a home cooked, prepared-from-scratch meal, there are many people who simply do not have the time or inclination to do so. The number of meals eaten away from home has been increasing over the past few decades. While there are many who try to support the ‘slow food’ movement, it is clear that they are fighting a losing battle.

Don’t get me wrong, I love cooking as much as the next guy. But it just takes a lot of time. Between work, writing, and taking my kids to school stuff and hockey, it just doesn’t leave a lot of time.

So asking people to devote themselves to home cooking, as noble as it may be, is not going to be a winning strategy. Fasting, on the other hand is the opposite. You save time because there is no time spent buying food, preparing, cooking and cleaning up. It is a way to simplify your life. I often skip breakfast in the mornings. Man, the time saved! I often skip lunch, too. Man, the time saved! If time is money….

Reason #4 – Cheat days

While I might advise people to never, ever again eat ice cream, I don’t think that is actually very practical advice. Sure, you might be able to swear off of it for 6 months, or 1 year, but for life? And would you really want to? Think about it. Think about the joy that some people get from savouring an especially delicious dessert at a wedding feast. Do we need to deny ourselves that little bit of pleasure forever? Let us all enjoy our birthday salad feast! Thanksgiving kale festival! All you can eat brussel sprouts! Yes, life just got a little less sparkly. Forever is a long time.

Now, I am not saying that you can eat dessert every single day, but fasting gives you the ability to occasionally enjoy that dessert because if you feast, you can balance the scale by fasting. It is, after all, the cycle of life. The reason these ‘cheat’ days are important is because it builds compliance. Simply put, it makes the diet easier to follow and changes it into a lifestyle instead. We often counsel that the most important aspect of fasting is to fit it into your life.

Reason #5 – PowerClenched-fist-300x300

I often treat type 2 diabetic patients. Most of them have had it for 10 years or more. So, of the obese patients I treat, they are often the worst of the worst in terms of obesity and insulin resistance. Sometimes, even a strict LCHF diet is not strong enough. The fastest and most efficient way to lower insulin is intermittent fasting.

In the end, you must ask yourself this question. If you do not eat anything for 1 week, do you think you will lose weight? Even a child understands that you must lose weight. It is almost inevitable. So its efficacy is unquestioned.

There are only two remaining questions. First – is it unhealthy? On the contrary, there are extraordinary health benefits. Two – can you do it? Well, if you never try it, you will never know. I think almost everybody can do it.

Reason #6 – Flexibility

Fasting can be done at any time and in any place. Furthermore, if you do not feel well for any reason, you simply stop. It is entirely reversible within minutes.

Consider bariatric surgery (stomach stapling). These surgeries are done so that people can fast for prolonged periods of time. And they tend to work, at least in the short term. But these surgeries have tons of complications, almost all of which are irreversible.

Furthermore, why would we assume that somebody cannot fast for 1 week or 1 month without ever having tried it?

Reason #7 – Add to any diet

Here is the biggest advantage of all. Fasting can be added to any diet. That is because fasting is not something you do, but something you do not do. It is subtraction rather than addition.

You don’t eat meat? You can still fast.

You don’t eat wheat? You can still fast.

You have a nut allergy? You can still fast.

You don’t have time? You can still fast.

You don’t have money? You can still fast.

You are travelling all the time? You can still fast.

You don’t cook? You can still fast.

You are 80 years old? You can still fast.

You have problems with chewing or swallowing? You can still fast.

What could possibly be simpler?

Start here for Fasting Part 1 – Historical Perspective

Continue to Fasting Part 15 – Muscle Mass

2017-09-02T11:54:13+00:00 75 Comments

About the Author:

Dr. Fung is a Toronto based kidney specialist, having graduated from the University of Toronto and finishing his medical specialty at the University of California, Los Angeles in 2001. He is the author of the bestsellers ‘The Obesity Code’ and ‘The Complete Guide to Fasting’. He has pioneered the use of therapeutic fasting for weight loss and type 2 diabetes reversal in his IDM clinic.

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Annie
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Dr. Fung,

Have any of your patients experienced hair loss as a result of fasting? If so, why do you think this happens? Since fasting (and low carb diets) lowers insulin and insulin impacts rapidly dividing cells (such as in cancer) — wouldn’t such regimes possibly cause hair loss as hair follicles are rapidly dividing cells?

Sarah
Guest
Wonderful post, Dr Fung. So you mean I can eat my traditional high carb diet daily as long as I make it a point to fast daily? That would really simplify my life and not be so hard on my pockets. Dr. Jason Fung: In the 1950’s, Americans ate white bread and pasta, but made sure to cut all snacks (you’ll ruin your dinner!), and fasted 12-14 hours nightly. It worked well for them. Now, the food production methods have changed, and they also ate much less sugar, but it is certainly a possibility that you could eat a reasonable… Read more »
Sarah
Guest

Thanks for the reply, Dr Fung. I have to admit that I feel less hungry if I ate a low carb meal before the fast. A high carb meal before the fast does make it harder to fast as the hunger pangs and stomach growls are stronger.

Margaret Cihocki
Guest

That’s just it, Sarah. intermittent fasting is just so much easier on a low carb high fat adequate protein diet. Because of the satiating effects of the protein and fat. Carbs raise blood glucose and insulin and when the glucose is used up, you’re going to feel some hunger until the insulin comes down and fat burning takes over. IF may be as effective no matter what diet you are following, but it is much much easier with LCHF. But, as Dr. Fung pointed out, it does allow for the occasional higher carb “cheat” meal.

Simon Thompson
Guest

Love the Art Deco Fist- keep up the good articles Jason!

Suzanne
Guest

Spot on! As always:-)
I do wonder though, between 8-10 hours into a fasting day, I get very cold fingers and toes. Also, my pulse goes down a bit. It does generally go away if I drink something hot. Will it eventually go away for good? I’ve only been doing this for about a month.

Dr. Jason Fung: See response to Sarah below

Sarah
Guest
It hasn’t for me… I have been doing a 22 hr fast 5 days a week since the last 2 months or so. My last meal was at 6pm yesterday evening. Even at this moment, I’m feeling freezing cold. And my hands and feet are like ice. The only time the cold feeling goes away is if I go for a walk in the sun. Dr. Jason Fung: You may need to change strategies slightly, as your metabolism may be slowing significantly. This used to happen to me too. I added back some days of eating lots of high fat… Read more »
Sarah
Guest

If its because of the metabolism slowing, how about if I do some exercise when I feel cold, like climb stairs, sit ups, etc? Will that prevent the slowing of the metabolism?

George
Guest

Yes 🙂

Walt
Guest
Dr Fung said “your metabolism may be slowing significantly”. I thought that was to be expected in the CRAP diet as insulin levels remained high due to a constant influx of food and insulin resistance. I’ve been doing the 24 hr fast continuously for over a week now with an avg daily caloric budget of 650 cal/day +/-. Where my metabolism should be, factoring in weight, gender, height, and Benedict-Harris, is 2000/day. Based upon everything I’ve read, largely Dr Fung’s book and posts, the only way one’s (my) metabolism should drop is if my body can not transition past the… Read more »
Walt
Guest

I should add, according to my scale, I am not losing weight either. How can this be? If my REE dropped to 650, wouldn’t I be hospitalized or…worse? Would subcutaneous adipose tissue blood flow be at all involved with the cold extremities?

zaki
Guest

I am very glad that I was able to lower the blood 300 to 165 in nearly two months of low carb & fasting.. with out any medication.. I been taking more than 100 of insulin a day..as a medicine.. i would like to thank you a god bless you.

Cassandra
Guest
Dear Dr. Fung, In fact there’s another question to add to the two in your point #5–what happens after the fast? Your rather cavalier advice is to act like it never happened, which is very sensible…but my body missed that memo. It’s hungry–for a week or so it’s been way hungrier than it was before I did the 5 and 7 day fasts. My plan to go ahead and do another week quickly fell by the wayside and it’s all I can do to stick to 2-3 LCHF meals per day. Besides that, I’m told by a researcher that energy… Read more »
donny
Guest
Another thing to take into consideration is how much weight a person has to lose. I’ve done several fasts of three days or longer. One fast, I started at a bodyweight of 154. I got hungrier every day of that fast. Years later I did a three day fast, starting from a bodyweight of 170. That fast was easy. Breaking the earlier fast, I had a tendency to binge. With the later fast, where I had greater body fat stores to begin with–no binge. I’ve also found what Dr. Fung says about more fat to be true. I eat low… Read more »
JW
Guest
Cassandra I’m also a fasting failure but have found a strategy that works for me..the good old Atkins Fat Fast. 1000 calories of fat broken down in 200 calories every few hours (macadamia nuts/cream cheese/CO/triple cheese brie/cream) etc. Now i thought I wouldn’t last half a day on this and that I would be starving, but it seems to regulate my appetite, cleans the slate, sets me in the right frame of mind. I end up eating less on other days naturally and the weight is finally starting to budge. Also it keeps my BS flatlined all day. You can… Read more »
Cassandra
Guest

Thanks, JW and Donny. Will try it.

Walter Bushell
Guest

Dr. Fung: I do appreciate you pragmatic attitude.

Dom
Guest
This is something i was thinking about recently, some thought in probably not coherent manner. LCHF: eat when hungry, until satisfied. But after 3 days – week, etc, of fasting, you maybe do not feel hungry, or have shown you do not need to eat, so why eat? Perhaps I am asking what reason is there to break a fast? Also, since you get an increase in metabolic rate, is it difficult to overeat when breaking a fast, say you eat something small to break and plan a normal meal a few hours later. Or even would it be possible… Read more »
matt20
Guest
I agree that fasting was the missing link for me. Your information is the best I’ve found on the topic and gave me the courage to start; I routinely fast 3 days and 4 nights. You had also mentioned the Insulin Index in one of your blogs: http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/66/5/1264.full.pdf One of the lowest foods on the insulin index, around 13 out of 100, is peanuts. Cheap and easy to roast, if you like. You can even soak them in vinegar for more effect. If you stay with foods with a low insulin index, it is much easier to start and maintain… Read more »
Marty Kendall
Guest

Thanks for the shoutout on the blog Matt. It was actually Jason’s vidoes that got me thinking about the insulin index earlier in the year. He has been really supportive of the blog – see https://intensivedietarymanagement.com/lchf-for-type-1-diabetes/

I really like this post, while a low insulin load nutrient dense paleoesque diet is great fasting is simple and cheap!

I am really excited about the idea of nutrient dense low insulin foods. I hope this list helps people on their journey – https://optimisingnutrition.wordpress.com/2015/04/06/optimal-foods-for-blood-sugar-regulation-and-nutritoinal-ketosis/

JW
Guest

Peanuts soaked in vinegar, now I haven’t heard that one before.
I must admit I have been scared off peanuts by Paleos, Rosedale etc, but you are right they are very cheap and if you buy them shelled it would keep the hands busy and eating slow.

BobM
Guest
My wife and I have been performing intermittent fasting for a while now. I started first and then she joined me. We just completed a three day fast together. She made it longer than I did into the fourth day before eating. I find that once my mind tells me it’s time to eat, it’s very difficult to not eat. I did not physically feel as if I had to eat, but mentally I was looking forward to lunch. I’ve been eating a low carb, high fat diet mainly, and I’ve been trying to increase my fat content too, as… Read more »
Greg
Guest

Dr. Fung

Did I understand you correctly as saying that LCHF is your preferred method of treating insulin resistance, diabetes and obesity based on your opening sentence, ” such as the LowCarb HighFat diets that we prefer”,
that fasting is a secondary option based on the difficulties some people have following or understanding LCHF except in the extreme cases you mention in #5 where both may be the best solution?

Thank you

Christoph Dollis
Guest

I believe he means that fasting is the best possible intervention, but since we have to eat, he believes LCHF diets are the best possible diet for most people, or at least type-2 diabetics.

Desmond
Guest
Thanks Dr Fung. Just wanted you to know that I am into my third week of intermittent fasting (24hr) that is every second day and some times I do a 36hr fast if I can. I have been able to reduce my insulin dosage (NovoMix 30) from 50 units to 25 units per day. Coupled with a reduced dose of insulin I have adopted a low carb diet – no bread, rice, flour products… This is really working for me and my family are impressed. I am determined to turn my diabetes around. Just one question: I notice that my… Read more »
Joanne
Guest
24 months (since May 2013) on very LCHF (<20 g. per day). Lost only 20 pounds the first 3 months and stalled. Two months ago (June 2015) began Intermittent fasting along with the LCHF. Lost 7 pounds in June, another 7 pounds in July, and now at halfway through August 2015 a total of 20 pounds with IF. I was very fat adapted so I've had no problems with sensations of coldness; I have plenty of body fat to feed on. I feel warm and cozy while fasting. Next Sunday, I will be starting my 3rd 5-day fast (every other… Read more »
BobM
Guest

Joanne, what do you eat when you come off a longer fast? I’ve done multiple 3 day fasts, and always have problems after the fast. Basically, there’s nothing in me other than water. My system starts up again, and I have to go to the bathroom 5+ times the first day off the fast (I usually restart at lunch, since I’ve mainly given up on breakfasts). Do you eat a very small meal for the first meal? Do you try to eat lightly the first day?

Becky
Guest
I haven’t had the courage to try a 3 to 5 day fast or longer, though I would really like to give it a try because I do travel quite a bit and restaurants are very problematic. However for the last month I have done the every-other-day fast, drinking home-made bone broth, and actually beginning my fast at about 7pm one night and going until about 5 or 6pm the next night. That works for me. I still get one meal on the day I’m “fasting.” Just mentally it’s “doable” for someone like me who is totally addicted to eating,… Read more »
BobM
Guest
I find traveling to be a good time to fast. I usually fast traveling to and from my destination, although I still drink water to prevent dehydration. Once I get somewhere, I’m usually with family, so I don’t fast. I haven’t traveled yet for work but plan to do so and likely will include some fasting. Though, I plan to go to Germany, which is great for low carb (lunch meat and cheese for breakfast; sausages and sauerkraut for lunch and/or dinner). If I go to England, I might fast more than I’ll fast while in Germany. 😉
JohnnyQ
Guest

Great article Dr. Fung! No more excuses. I have a question: Would it be effective if I did a five days or more fast where I eat 500 or less calories per day?

Thanks!

Bernard P.
Guest
As explained by Dr. Fung in the above blog entry, fasting means “Eat nothing including sugars or sweeteners. Drink water, tea, coffee or bone broth. That’s it.” If I am eating, even 500 calories or less, I am not fasting. I am restricting calories. Dr. Fung has explained in a previous post that even eating just a little bit can be enough to prevent the body from entering gluconeogenesis (fat-burning mode). I was apprehensive before trying a 24 hour fast for the first time, but it turned out to be surprisingly easy. After that, it became a routine. I have… Read more »
gavrilo
Guest

USC’s Dr. Valter Longo has created the Fast Mimicking Diet, a five day partial eating diet that in research decreased risk factors/biomarkers for aging, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer without major adverse effects, providing support for the use of FMDs to promote healthspan.

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1550413115002247

http://www.imjournal.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/Content.Main/id/78/longo

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/lifestyle/wellbeing/diet/11686002/Why-weve-all-been-doing-the-Fast-Diet-wrong.html

Walt
Guest

But Bernard, what you’ll notice if you read Dr Fung’s book, what he calls a 24 hr fast is really 23.5 hrs or 21+3 hrs. In other words one meal a day is considered a 24hr fast, assuming that meal doesn’t extend for say 6 hrs. Rather than an alternating day 24 hr fast I do a continuous 24 hr fast and have a supper void of sugars or simple carbs. Calories don’t cause obesity, insulin does. Personally, I’d call what I am doing a continuous 23hr fast but Dr Fung coined it, I didn’t.

Walt

Doris
Guest
Hi Dr Jason Fung, Another great article from you again! However, I have a question. I have been on both Intermittent Fasting and LCHF for 37 days now. I have since loss 18lb. I realise whenever I’m on 16:8 regimen, my weight sort of maintained or reduced just a little. But, when I go on a 24 hour fast, the next day I will drop 1.5lb. Now, I prefer 3 days of 24 hour fast in a week and the rest of the day on 16:8 regimen. During the break fast window, I will restrictly consume only LCHF diet as… Read more »
John C
Guest

Thanks for another excellent post. I have found it hard to fast longer than 48 hours at a time, but will keep trying because I agree that the difficulty may be more psychological than real physical hunger. Howeve, even shorter fasts (16 hours every night and 24 hours three or four times each week) have worked well for me and this encourages me to keep trying longer fasts to find out how much more I can improve my health. WE ARE WHAT WE DO NOT EAT!

Jenny mc
Guest

thank you so much for making your knowledge so accessible via youtube and the internet. I am obese and not losing very much weight doing 16:8 and lchf. Last year I lost weight doing 5>2 and now it is so easy to understand why. Brillant!

Norma Laming
Guest

Give them Dr Eric Westman’s Ketogenic Diet Manual and tell them “only eat the food listed on page 4. If it’s not on page 4 you don’t eat it”.

Cassandra
Guest

So break the suspense for us–what’s on page 4?

Gigi
Guest
Quick question. I have been doing the 36 hour fast every other day for just over two weeks now. I notice that my morning fasting glucose is always up at 100 on the morning of my water fast day and stays there pretty much until the next morning when it nudges down to the 90s. Whereas if I eat everyday, it tends to be in the 80s. My post prandials soar into the 200s easily. If I ate one triscuit in the morning and then nothing but water the rest of the 36 hours, would the fast still be as… Read more »
Toni Bissell Legates
Guest
Dr, Fung, I’ve taken your advice to heart and started a 13 day water fast on July 12,2015. I’m a type 2 with poor control on a LCHF diet and after a lot of frustration I ditched the diet and ate what I wanted to for months. When I began I didn’t think I would make it a /ay much less 13. It took 8 days for my sugars to drop from 450-500 to 286 but they edged down from there and by the day I broke my fast. I was getting readings as low as 120. I have now… Read more »
John Caruso
Guest

Dr Fung, Just wondering if you have had any kidney transplant recipients fast to address T2DM / weight loss post transplant? Are there any contraindications for prolonged fasts in transplant recipients? Thanks for your wonderful blog, videos and other fasting related resources. These are truly invaluable.

Jane
Guest
Hi Dr Fung, Firstly, thanks for all the info on your blog posts! I sat enthralled for 2 days reading everything and nearly jumping up and down with excitement as you have confirmed so much I learnt from my ‘alternate’ nutritional studies 20 years ago and taught me so much more! I have 2 questions….the first is how do you know when/if your BSW has reset??? That is my prime reason for starting fasting as I have lost 28lbs and DO NOT want to put it on again!! The second is that although I have never had a problem with… Read more »
Walter Bushell
Guest

Best way to measure if your insulin level is low is the ketostick. If you are in ketosis, your insulin is low. AFAIK there is no home method for direct testing.

Gunnar Isaksson
Guest
Thanks Dr Fung for another great article about fasting. I have learned alot and all my fears for fasting has wanished. I try to fast spontaneously once or twice a week. I do 24-36 hours and once a month 3-4 days of fasting. When I have done a 36 hour fast and feel just great, I then just extend the fast a few more days. Normally I will feel warm and in good spirit but sometimes after a few days I might feel frozen and cold. When that happens I wll terminate the fast immeditately since I guess my methabolism… Read more »
Jane
Guest

Thanks Walter. I have been LCHF for 6 months so, unless there is something very wrong, I should be in ketosis but I never use the ketostix and have also heard that unless you are just starting out they are not reliable as a measure after a while. The breath tester is said to be more accurate.
Do you happen to know why the insulin would be low if you are in ketosis…….especially as things eaten on LCHF can stimulate insulin but not increase your BS?

Annette
Guest

Hi Jane, I am not sure that this is a definite answer but by my thinking, being in a state of ketosis means that you are burning your own stores of fat. If your insulin is elevated then fat storage not burning will occur, hence, no ketones. Just FYI, as I learned the hard way, Drink lots and lots of water…stay hydrated. Hope this helps.

Cristi Vlad
Guest

have you ever considered a slow metabolism beneficial from the perspective of aging:?

I guess 99% of folks dont. If your body runs cooler and at a slower pace, it may run in maintenance mode for much longer that it would if you provide it with plenty of food and focus on “speeding up” your metabolism. folks, challenge the dogma!

Joe P
Guest
I am on my fourth fast (7 day, three day, and four day). So far I am at day three. Usually I am always hot when not fasting but I have been feeling cool if not downright cold during this fast. Extra blanket on the bed and all. I finally reached the same actual weight as what it says on my drivers license, with a loss of 35 pounds since May. BG readings have been (depending upon the meter) between 85 and 113, down from 275, while my A1C dropped from 9.5 to 6.5 (Xtra home test). Happy but worried… Read more »
Margaret Cihocki
Guest
Intermittent fasting was half the key to losing nearly 30 stubborn pounds that I couldn’t lose even on a strict Low carb high fat diet. The other half was raising my protein intake a bit and ditching the extra fat (mostly from bullet proof coffees). I’m now at goal weight with normal BMI and more energy and stamina than people a lot younger than I. It was reading your posts, Dr. Fung, that convinced me to go ahead and try IF. I was also able to convince my husband to try it and he has lost 42 lb. and is… Read more »
caju
Guest

Very inspiring. What was your IF routine and how long did it take to shed the pounds?

Ethan Aquilina
Guest

I’m trying to fast 2 days per week. I have breakfast and then don’t eat again until the next morning’s breakfast (twice per week). Am I doing it right?!

JW
Guest

You sure are! You’re doing a 24 hour fast twice a week. Whether dinner to dinner or breakfast to breakfast – whatever works for you.

erdoke
Guest
Great article, as usual. I would only disagree a bit with the long term health effects of a junk diet combined with IF. That would definitely cause similar deficiencies to what people experience on a SAD, e.g. low magnesium, DHA, K2, etc. I would stick to eating a whole foods, nutrient dense regimen between fasting days, regardless of carb content. That’s not especially inexpensive, but together with the “not eating days” also does not cost significantly more than the SAD. All in all, I suggest that the money saved on fasting days is used for improving quality of food on… Read more »
DebbieC
Guest
I’ve been doing IF for over a month now, starting with 20:4 days, and then moving to a 24-hour fast several days a week. I’m down 22 pounds since I started, and that’s after my weight had been creeping up and up for a couple years on a LCHF diet. On LCHF my blood sugar was pretty out of control also. I’m really hoping IF will help there too though I have not really seen much improvement in a month however – but will keep plugging away. I do love the simplicity of IF. I’ve done one 36-hour fast but… Read more »
caju
Guest

DebbieC, well done! was your 24-hour fast days in addition to the other days being 20:4?

DebbieC.
Guest
Hi, my 24-hour fasts are generally alternated (so far) with days that vary from 16:8 – 18:6 – or 20:4. It was initially 20:4 every day, but when I started incorporating the 24-hour fasts every other day the alternate days became more like 16:8 or 18:6 rather than 20:4, but I’ll still occasionally have a 20:4 day if, for some reason, I can’t seem to make it the full 24 hours with my fast. I’d love to try to fast for longer than 24 hours but have been unable to easily push there yet. I really have to watch my… Read more »
Toni Bissell Legates
Guest
Hi DebbieC. I’ve been fasting now since 7/12/15 about 43 days. I began fasting on July, 12th and fasted for 13 days strait. My blood sugars were out of control when I began. When I started my fast ,my diet was beyond poor. I had thrown in the towel on the LCHF diet and not only began eating what ever I wanted to. I also stopped taking my fast acting sliding scale insulin and took only the long acting lantus at nite. So, my readings were very very high at the beginning of the 13 day water/ bone broth fast,… Read more »
Christoph Dollis
Guest

Great post.

Eric
Guest

Dr.Fung what would you suggest for folks such as myself that experience a mental fogginess/drowsiness. It sort of a hard feeling to describe, I drink water but still tend to not feel right (mentally) when fasting (20-24 hrs).

Thanks, Eric

mike
Guest

I have been on LCHF for about two years. After reading Dr Fung’s blog, I have done 4 X 16/8 and 2 X 36 fasts. I am surprised in the lessening of my appetite. Some days I almost dont want dinner. However, I am also sleepier in the 2 weeks I have been on this protocol – could be coincidence. Just turned 60. Weight loss seems to have picked up again after stalling since late spring.

Mike

Tamarah
Guest
Dr Fung,, I enjoy IF but I read that you must still try to get in your 1200-1500 cal during your eating window ? Is this true,, because there is no way I can do that. I have usually 2 meals a day with IF,, and I practice LCHF as well . I feel satisfied but am I doing any harm to my metabolism . I hate counting cal I don’t do it I don’t want to do it,, I eat until I am full,, and don’t eat again until I am hungry . Can my eating windows vary from… Read more »
Brian G.
Guest
Dr. Fung, Just learned of you while watching the LCHF Convention videos. Your lecture was outstanding. I have a question about fasting. Setting aside the issue of palatability, do you think a person who fasts for a period of time would cause the identical benefit of avoiding all carbs and proteins (but eating fat) during that period of time? I ask because my understanding is that fat causes essentially no change in insulin levels. Some might prefer to fast, but others might prefer to have an occasional bite of butter, coconut oil, or that MCT/butter/coffee emulsion that is all the… Read more »
Grant
Guest

Blood sugar after 36 hour fast was 4.2. (T2D) 2 hours after very low carb breakfast it’s 6.5. Discouraging. Or does that number mean anything?

Grant
Guest

I see this was touched on earlier in this thread, so disregard unless you can add more specific info.

Colin
Guest

@Grant: What does your “very low carb breakfast” look like? There are people who think they eat “very low carb” but they still eat bread and other crap T2’s shouldn’t be eating.

Dave
Guest

Wondering anyone with T2 how long one can stay without eating. If I don’t eat after five hours my sugar goes down fast..may be up to 3.5 or so which makes me worried.How I can start fasting ?

Al P
Guest
Dr Fung, Hi I’m new here I have t2D and am overweight, well more like obese 295 lbs, I was 370 at my highest last year I lost over 40 lbs. I also spill protein into my urine so I assume I do have some kidney damage. My sugar is usually between 130. The highest is in the morning or early afternoon before I start eating its as high as 180. (From not eating overnight) my first concern is I was told by the Drs especially the kidney Dr that I should never ever have my body in ketosis, and… Read more »
Caro
Guest

Hi Dr. Fung, please could you say a few words about what effect fasting can have on gallstones?
The only research I could find seemed to say that fasting longer than about 14 hours started to make the gall in the gallbladder more viscose so more likely to worsen stones. As a tool against T2D would 14 hours fasting be long enough – or would taking possibly linseed oil every 10 hours or so be adequate to keep the fast going and keep the gall more fluid. Thank you.

Joe Dawes
Guest

After reading a spiritual devotional in the morning and getting my dose of the noumenal,
your posts are next to set my day just right. Your humour as you teach is really inspiring, and there is not a misplaced impartation anywhere. Thanks again.

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Dave Bastin
Guest

Any thoughts on taking BCAA’s (Branched Chain Amino Acids in pill form) on a fast day?

John C
Guest

Hi Dr. Fung. I am a newly diagnosed diabetic as of 9/26. (FBG 333, A1c 11.3) I was put on Janumet 50/500 2x. At the same time I started intermittent fasting by eating in a 6 hr window (low carb lunch and dinner) 7 days a week. I have lost 10 lbs in 30 days and my FBG is now a consistent 100. Will this fasting protocol eventually reverse my diabetes, or do I need to be on a more aggressive fast.

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Jônatas Silveira de Andrade
Guest
Jônatas Silveira de Andrade
Hello there, Dr. Fung . Well, first things first: I’d like to thank you for all these amazing advice you so kindly provided for free – which I have been recommending to friends and family. I’d like to ask about Low Carb, Adequate Fat, High protein diets – can it be used effectively with intermitent fasting, instead of a LCHF diet? I mean, can a high protein meal break ketosis process and refuel glycogen stores? Also, I’d love to have your posts translated to Brazilian Portuguese (I can do it for free, should you consent), for there is an absolute… Read more »
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