Why do a long Fat Fast or Long Water Fast?
Ah, Dr. Longo, why must you sell your soul? First of all, you should replace every time he mentions ‘Fasting Mimicking Diet,’ or ‘FMD,’ with just plain fasting. All of the benefits, pathways, and evidence can be completely gained by doing a long water fast. Dr. Longo is doing brilliant work in the area of fasting and longevity, and I have deep respect of his science and experiments. However, I diverge a bit, since he’s a vegan, and his studies are all geared toward the paywall that is the FMD.
To be clear, the FMD is optional, and water-fasting gets you there. The FMD exists because many people don’t want to do extremely long fasts. He developed it to get doctors, and patients to do long fasts. It has been used to treat, or reverse cancer, and many other chronic diseases. That's right, some of his experiences yielded a complete cure of cancer in mice. Yet, we may never see it in hospitals, unless they adopt the monetized FMD, or a drug that has similar effects. Fact is, we have the power to do this, and while I do believe a doctor should be in the loop on a long fast, we need to get away from this pay-to-play paradigm, which puts money and profit first, for the sake of our health.
That being said, the interview in this video is brilliant. It covers most of the bases of long fasts, starvation responses, and pathways. It covers multiple studies, and evidence, and translates some of the jargon into more digestible bits for us assholes :-) I’ve watched this more than once.
This is where my current seven-day fat fast comes into play. Looking at his FMD, it shows 10-percent protein, 40-percent carbs, and 50-percent fat, all under 800 calories per day, after induction. My experiment attempts to prove that you can get the same result with 90-percent fat, 5-percent protein and 5-percent carbs. We know that more than 50 calories from carbs, or 50 calories from protein will reset a fast – briefly, but does interrupt the process.
Fat seems to have no effect on it at all. Fat also is very satiating. It stands to reason that instead of ordering the 200-buck green box of happiness filled with processed vegan foods, with the right macros and supplements, we can do it on our own with what we have available in the grocery store. My hypothesis is that you can get the same benefits as the FMD with a five- to seventh-day fat fast, cycled as often as FMD. Pure water-fasting would be optimal, but I believe a fat fast, and yes, the vegan FMD, can get you most of the way there, and the difference would be minimal, from a health standpoint.
This video also seemingly illustrates the importance of the refeed. Fasting is about destroying, and signaling our body that we need to rebuild. This allows intermittent fasting to have a cumulative effect of building new tissue on the death of old tissue. Imagine rebuilding the engine of an old car. How many extra miles would you get out of that car? Same principle with long fasts. The pathways that get activated happen on day four to six of a longer fast. During the first 72 hours of a fast, we’re in the process of switching to a fat-burning metabolism. Being keto shortens that process. Keto, alone, does not get the benefits, or signal the teardown, and rebuilding, like fasting does. If longevity, and anti-aging is your goal, long fasts need to be a part of that.
That being said, you need enough fat on board to do a long fast. If you’re at a normal body weight, you can, generally, go up to 21 days (risky). If you’re obese, you could go a lot longer. The longest fast ever recorded was a 382-day water fast. I have done five-day water fasts. They are a bitch, especially the first four days.
So far, the fat fast has been a lot easier. This means fat-fasting will likely be in my arsenal for better health; not to mention it provides certain financial benefits, from both a food standpoint, and a medical-cost standpoint. That's right, I just helped save you thousands of dollars. :-) Do your research. There’s a fuck ton of videos out there like this one. There are studies, both ongoing, and archived. If you search long and hard, you will uncover all of the proof you need to make fasting a part of your life.
I have been fasting intermittently, pretty much daily, for the past three years. My fasting window never drops below 16 hours. As I write this, I’m 92 hours into my fat fast, with, so far, compelling results. I’m between 600 and 800 calories per day in heavy cream. I might have some dark chocolate, next time I have a hunger pang. I’ve only had one bout of hunger, which ended when I did a shot of heavy cream. Thank you, Dr. Longo, for doing the research, on which I’m basing my theory. Hopefully, you don't continue to fall into the funding rabbit hole, as all your research is now geared toward proving the FMD as the cure, when fasting does the same thing. Also, I forgive you for being a vegan.