Why I Fast

Metabolizing excess visceral and subcutaneous fat as an energy source is great and everything, and resetting blood sugar levels and reversing insulin resistance is certainly very important to prevent/reverse metabolic syndrome and type-2 diabetes. But, as I mentioned previously, I started a fasting and a ketogenic diet regimen for the many other health/wellness benefits associated with Therapeutic Fasting, too. From old/damaged cells regeneration (immune system, especially); to cancer treatment and prevention; to Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and Huntington’s disease treatment and prevention; to the myriad of autoimmune diseases (more on this through my daily breathing technique and cold exposure therapy soon); to epilepsy treatment and prevention; to multiple sclerosis treatment and prevention; to heart disease, and high blood pressure . . . the list goes on and on. There is a great deal of research from studies dating back many decades. I will be posting playlists of interviews, presentations, and TED talks on all this soon (now located below); as well as article excerpts, peer-reviewed papers from reputable medical/scientific journals, et al.

It is YOUR health, which is ultimately in YOUR hands. There are great opportunities for prevention, and even remissions, but you must be willing to spend the time to become better educated about such opportunities. – Bobby

“Humans live on one-quarter of what they eat; on the other three-quarters lives their doctor.” – Egyptian pyramid inscription, 3800 B.C.

“Everyone has a doctor in him or her; we just have to help it in its work. The natural healing force within each one of us is the greatest force in getting well. Our food should be our medicine. Our medicine should be our food. But to eat when you are sick, is to feed your sickness.” – Hippocrates, M.D., Father of Western Medicine

“Fasting is the greatest remedy – the physician within.” – Philippus Paracelsus, 15th century physician, one of the three fathers of Western medicine who established the role of chemicals in medicine.

“Fasting is the first principle of medicine; fast and see the strength of the spirit reveal itself.” – Rumi

“Recent studies have shown that beta-hydroxybutyrate, the principal ketone, is not just a fuel, but a superfuel, more efficiently producing ATP energy than glucose. It has also protected neuronal cells in tissue cultures against exposure to toxins associated with Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s.” – Harvard Medical School professor, George F. Cahill

Fasting: Molecular Mechanisms and Clinical Applications

Fasting has been practiced for millennia, but only recently studies have shed light on its role in adaptive cellular responses that reduce oxidative damage and inflammation, optimize energy metabolism and bolster cellular protection. In lower eukaryotes, chronic fasting extends longevity in part by reprogramming metabolic and stress resistance pathways. In rodents intermittent or periodic fasting protects against diabetes, cancers, heart disease and neurodegeneration, while in humans it helps reduce obesity, hypertension, asthma and rheumatoid arthritis. Thus, fasting has the potential to delay aging and help prevent and treat diseases while minimizing the side effects caused by chronic dietary interventions.

In humans, fasting is achieved by ingesting no or minimal amounts of food and caloric beverages for periods that typically range from 12 hours to three weeks. Many religious groups incorporate periods of fasting into their rituals including Muslims who fast from dawn until dusk during the month of Ramadan, and Christians, Jews, Buddhists and Hindus who traditionally fast on designated days of the week or calendar year. In many clinics, patients are now monitored by physicians while undergoing water only or very low calorie (less than 200 kcal/day) fasting periods lasting from 1 week or longer for weight management, and for disease prevention and treatment. Fasting is distinct from caloric restriction (CR) in which the daily caloric intake is reduced chronically by 20–40%, but meal frequency is maintained. Starvation is instead a chronic nutritional insufficiency that is commonly used as a substitute for the word fasting, particularly in lower eukaryotes, but that is also used to define extreme forms of fasting, which can result in degeneration and death. We now know that fasting results in ketogenesis, promotes potent changes in metabolic pathways and cellular processes such as stress resistance, lipolysis and autophagy, and can have medical applications that in some cases are as effective as those of approved drugs such as the dampening of seizures and seizure-associated brain damage and the amelioration of rheumatoid arthritis (Bruce-Keller et al., 1999; Hartman et al., 2012; Muller et al., 2001). As detailed in the remainder of this article, findings from well-controlled investigations in experimental animals, and emerging findings from human studies, indicate that different forms of fasting may provide effective strategies to reduce weight, delay aging, and optimize health. Here we review the fascinating and potent effects of different forms of fasting including intermittent fasting (IF, including alternate day fasting, or twice weekly fasting, for example) and periodic fasting (PF) lasting several days or longer every 2 or more weeks. We focus on fasting and minimize the discussion of CR, a topic reviewed elsewhere (Fontana et al., 2010; Masoro, 2005).” […]

PDF: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3946160/pdf/nihms551820.pdf

I plan to offer more information soon on therapeutic fasting and fasting mimetic dietary approaches for multiple sclerosis. Here is just a bit of information from a study Valter Longo, Ph.D. (featured in a video above). Research is being done, and advantageous results are being observed! https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4899145/

Since I know people who have epilepsy (kids mostly), or who experience seizures for various reasons and to varying degrees (kids and adults), let’s have a quick look at where this really started: first with fasting, but here in the last century or so ketogenic diet to help with epilepsy. (video added 8/16/2017 1:00 PM)

Johns Hopkins – Neurology and Neurosurgery – Dietary Therapy – Ketogenic Diet

Johns Hopkins – News and Publications – Modified Atkins Diet Can Cut Epileptic Seizures in Adults

“Reporting on the results in the February issue of Epilepsia, Eric H. Kossoff, M.D., an assistant professor of neurology and pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, said 30 adults with epilepsy, ages 18 to 53 years, who had tried at least two anticonvulsant drugs without success and had an average of 10 seizures per week, were placed on the modified Atkins diet. All patients were seen for free in the Johns Hopkins General Clinical Research Center.

The regimen restricted them to 15 grams of carbohydrates a day. “That’s a few strawberries, some vegetables, or a bit of bread,” says Kossoff. The diet offers most of its calories from fat-eggs, meats, oils and heavy cream-with as much protein and no-carb beverages as patients want.

Each day, patients kept diaries of what they ate and how many seizures they had. The researchers evaluated how each patient was doing at one, three and six months after starting the diet.

Results showed that about half the patients had experienced a 50 percent reduction in the frequency of their seizures by the first clinic visit. About a third of the patients halved the frequency of seizures by three months. Side effects linked with the diet, such as a rise in cholesterol or triglycerides, were mild. A third of the patients dropped out by the third month, unable to comply with the restrictions.

Fourteen patients who stuck with the diet until the six-month mark chose to continue, even after the study ended-a testament to how effective the diet worked to treat their epilepsy, Kossoff notes.

Though the modified Atkins diet won’t be a good fit for all patients, says Kossoff, “it opens up another therapeutic option for adults trying to decide between medication, surgery and electrical stimulation to treat intractable seizures.” A second study to examine the diet’s effects on adults with intractable seizures is under way.”

Dr. Dominic D’Agostino on Ketosis, Ketogenic Diet, and Theraputic Fasting (video added 8/27/2017 10:00 AM):

Here is a YouTube ordered playlist I created (of 13 videos) that I have found helpful in my research (of the/their research):

Cancer, Autophagy, Fasting, and Ketosis:

If you want to explore this subject matter further, head to The Deep End.