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Intermittent Fasting - A Primer ( Part 2 )

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  • #31
    Originally posted by ciavyn View Post
    Curious, PK, do you find that drinking coffee with HWC affects your fast in any way? I usually have coffee with HWC and some coconut oil, as I did this morning, and I find that very satisfying for several hours...but is that going against the whole point?
    I like math, so let's do some quick calculations to see what we're really talking about here.

    Heavy cream is cream that has 35% milk fat, with the rest of it being as close as makes no difference, water. Assuming you use 1 oz (28g) of cream in your coffee, then you've just ingested approximately 10g of fat, for an energy intake of 90 kCal.

    If you look at food labeling in the US, you will see that all labels specify the % daily value that a particular serving of the food in question contains. This is all based on an assumed daily caloric requirement of 2000 kCal. With this framework, your caloric intake from 1 oz. of cream is 4.5%. This is not a lot.

    So, to restate your question: "What is the impact of ingesting 90 kCal, or 4.5% of your daily caloric requirements, of fat on the hormonal responses of the human body to fasting?"

    I would expect the effect to be negligible. In absolute terms, just based on caloric content alone, that is a trivial amount of energy that you have ingested.

    But just for the sake of argument, let's assume that this amount of energy intake were enough to reverse the hormonal context evoked by fasting, that is, the metabolism would be switched from fasting state to feeding state. Now, imagine back in pre-history, a hapless hunter that hasn't eaten for a day or so, due to some bad luck. His body is actively releasing FFAs from adipose tissues and oxidizing them for energy, everything is humming along nicely. Then, incidentally while tracking some prey, he comes upon some wild berries, enough for roughly a handful of food, and eats them, only to collapse a little while later because this trivial amount of nutrient intake was enough to transition his metabolism from a state where it was relying on internal resources for energy to reliance on external energy resources which never materialized. I think this kind of metabolism, while theoretically possible, would be evolutionarily eliminated pretty quickly.

    I also expect the effect to be negligible due to the nature of the food that you've eaten, specifically, fat. In order for a "meal" of pure fat to effect a change in your metabolic context, that would imply that somehow, your tissues were able to detect exogenous FFAs from your meal, and differentiate them from endogenous FFAs from your adipose tissue. So far, nobody has proposed a mechanism by which this would happen. We know that fat does not evoke an insulin response, so, at the very least, your pancreas is "blind" to ingested fat. Most likely, all tissues treat all fats as fungible, irrespective of their source. At a cellular level, any FFA molecule is just as good as any other for mitochondrial oxidation.

    With the above in mind, I can answer your question like this: "The most likely outcome of ingesting 1 oz. of cream is that 1/3 oz. of adipose fat that would have otherwise been oxidized for energy will now be spared due to the ingestion of 1/3 oz. of FFAs from a cup of coffee."

    Personally, I consider worrying about 1/3 oz. of adipose tissue obsessive. But, maybe you're a purist, in which case, by all means cut out the HWC.

    -PK
    My blog : cogitoergoedo.com

    Interested in Intermittent Fasting? This might help: part 1, part 2, part 3.

    Comment


    • #32
      Originally posted by pklopp View Post
      This is preempting part 3, but, the benefits relate principally to free fatty acid oxidation. Of course, this being just a teaser you will have to wait for that post .
      Not to rush you, but I'm pretty sure I've checked every few hours since Part II to make sure I don't miss Part III. This has the potential to be the best trilogy since Star Wars. In fact, this is what people must have felt like waiting on "Return of the Jedi". All kidding aside, I've been fasting with a 4-6 hour eating window for about a month now, and I'm really curious about the hormonal response (stress?) to longer fasts.

      Comment


      • #33
        Me, too, Primal. I keep waiting to see what he says next. does that make us groupies?
        The Sedition of Sisyphus: Go Find Another Rock

        Griff's Cholesterol Primer

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        • #34
          I'm interesting in IFing, but I have PCOS and am still a bit insulin resistant. I also have quite a bit of weight to lose. Can one still IF in this condition? Would it be a good tool for resensitisation?

          Comment


          • #35
            Originally posted by SonyaJane View Post
            I'm interesting in IFing, but I have PCOS and am still a bit insulin resistant. I also have quite a bit of weight to lose. Can one still IF in this condition? Would it be a good tool for resensitisation?
            Well, I'm not a doctor, so, I cannot advise you with respect to PCOS and the suitability of IF for aiding with that condition. If your primary reason for fasting is to improve your PCOS, then ... I don't know. IF will affect your hormones. It has to in order for your body to respond differently. Will it affect your hormones in such a way as to ameliorate PCOS? Possibly, possibly not.

            The method that I've outlined for trying IF is a gradual progression. If you try it and, at any point you should start to feel unwell, then, please stop. Your body talks to you in no uncertain terms. The problem is that people seem to think that they are smarter than their bodies. They're not. It's just hubris.

            I do not know the details of your particular metabolism, but I speculate that it is more or less like mine, and everybody else. As such, you have evolved an energy storage mechanism that can keep you going for a month at the least. Going for less than a day without food is definitely within the tolerances of your body. The thought might be intimidating to you, and this is understandable. We are all subject to constant bombardment by messages to eat. But these messages do not have our well being as their goal, rather, they merely aim to influence us into eating some corporate entity's product.

            Bottom line, if your metabolism were so compromised that fasting for 16 hours would cause you harm, you would have severe issues, and you would certainly already be aware of them. Should you decide to give this all a try, do the gradual approach and see how it all makes you feel. You are the ultimate arbiter of whether or not something is making you feel better or worse.

            -PK
            My blog : cogitoergoedo.com

            Interested in Intermittent Fasting? This might help: part 1, part 2, part 3.

            Comment


            • #36
              The main problem I have with the PCOS is the insulin resistance, so PCOS aside, I'm assuming IFing can help with increasing sensitivity to insulin. It's unknown whether PCOS causes insulin resistance or vice versa, but decreasing one decreases the other. Ultimately, my question is whether or not I should adapt your methods because I am insulin resistant, not do it at all, or whether it's perfect as it is for resensitising to insulin.

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              • #37
                I can testify that, for me, IF has done some amazing things like:
                Keeps me from thinking about food
                Keeps me leaner than I've ever been
                Keeps me from being hunger
                Gives me the luxury of eating two really large meals - love that feeling of being full
                Gives me tons of time in the evening withouth having to cook dinner (I eat breakfast and lunch)

                I'm sure there's more things but you get the picture...

                Comment


                • #38
                  Originally posted by SonyaJane View Post
                  The main problem I have with the PCOS is the insulin resistance, so PCOS aside, I'm assuming IFing can help with increasing sensitivity to insulin.
                  I see.

                  In that case, this bit from part 1 is relevant here:

                  Ramadan style intermittent fasting results in a pronounced lowering of insulin during the daily fast portion "favor[ing] a predominant lipolytic state."

                  So, even if all you were to do would be to compress your daily meals into one large meal, while you would arguably maintain the same average level of insulin, you would change what the insulin curve looked like. That is, you would potentially have one larger insulin burst instead of three correspondingly smaller bursts throughout the day. One the whole, your tissues would spend more time in a low circulating insulin environment, and I would expect that to increase insulin sensitivity over time.

                  -PK
                  My blog : cogitoergoedo.com

                  Interested in Intermittent Fasting? This might help: part 1, part 2, part 3.

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Wow, I haven't been on here for a day, and this is what happens! PK, I really appreciate the detailed posts. IF is something I've been playing with - I managed a 24 hour fast last weekend with no real problems, and have skipped various meals during the week.

                    The best weightloss programme I was ever on was from a naturopath who had me eating a very small protein based breakfast (eggs or tuna on rye bread) and a large, protein/fat heavy lunch at about 2-3pm, then nothing. I lost weight effortlessly and felt wonderful. Skipping dinner was only practical at that time because I was working evening shifts and wasn't home to cook for the tribe. As soon as I stopped the shifts, I started eating dinner again. These posts have given me another framework to apply to what happened then - I had an eating window of about 8 hours, but had one wonderful meal and one smaller, functional meal in that time. Hmmm.

                    Another point is that IF seems to be working for my IBS. I'm guessing it's to do with resting the gut for a decent length of time and then only introducing foods it can cope with? I still have some issues with it, but they're possibly healing rather than exacerbation issues. It's improving, but slowly.

                    I was especially interested that you do this as a daily routine. The other posts have all been about IF once or twice a week, or with a bigger eating window. I'm leaning towards one posters idea (sorry, can't remember who said it!) of eating dinner, waiting a while, then eating more if necessary.

                    Exciting, very exciting!! Post 3 is something I'm kind of looking forward to - but also I don't want to get bogged down in details as I'm really trying to stay in a non-obsessional place about food!
                    Started Feb 18 2011

                    Tried basic primal and almost everything else in pursuit of IBS control, mood stability, and weight loss.

                    Journalling here

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Originally posted by PrimalJayhawk View Post
                      Not to rush you, but I'm pretty sure I've checked every few hours since Part II to make sure I don't miss Part III. This has the potential to be the best trilogy since Star Wars. In fact, this is what people must have felt like waiting on "Return of the Jedi". All kidding aside, I've been fasting with a 4-6 hour eating window for about a month now, and I'm really curious about the hormonal response (stress?) to longer fasts.
                      No need to fret. Just subscribe to this thread, and I'll post here when I put up part 3.

                      -PK
                      My blog : cogitoergoedo.com

                      Interested in Intermittent Fasting? This might help: part 1, part 2, part 3.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Why is it that when I mentioned IFing like this 3-4 times a week on my calorie counting post, everybody jumped all over my case assuming that I must have some sort of eating disorder but when a young guy with a nice looking 6 pack says it is good, everybody yells RAWR! Yay Caveman! and becomes his groupies? Jeesh!

                        But seriously, I have been doing this for a while, not any white knuckled forcing myself into it, it just sort of happened that way. It's how I feel comfortable. I generally have a green drink in the morning based on wheatgrass juice with a splash of hemp milk (probably less cals than your coffee + HWC). Then I have one main meal about 4:30-5:30 pm.

                        The only days I deviate from this are when I am going out for an all day mountain hike or urban 1/2 marathon walk. Then I will have a solid breakfast with eggs involved. I find that for sprints and LHTs, working out fasted seems to be very focusing and energizing.

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                        • #42
                          pklopp (and others), I'm not sure this was addressed yet, I was just reading the post on top of this page about the coffee with the heavy cream and reminded me of one post of Johnny from Lean Saloon when we talked about how, since it's all fat, it doesn't make a difference for the insuline response in the fasted state, and it's just 25 calories or so of cream (in his example).

                          My question now would be, ok, 25-90 calories of fat are probably not a big deal, how about 15 calories of carbs? For example, I sometimes like to take some of the Madre Labs products from iHerb.com, I noticed it helps with some of my low energy while I'm IF'ing in the morning (16/8).

                          The serving is usually a teaspoon (3 grams) of freeze-dried berries that you mix in with a bit of water. When checking for the calories for this serving, it's like 20 calories, of which 10 calories or so are from fat and the rest from carbs.

                          Would this "break" the fast?

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Originally posted by JPA View Post
                            My question now would be, ok, 25-90 calories of fat are probably not a big deal, how about 15 calories of carbs? For example, I sometimes like to take some of the Madre Labs products from iHerb.com, I noticed it helps with some of my low energy while I'm IF'ing in the morning (16/8).

                            The serving is usually a teaspoon (3 grams) of freeze-dried berries that you mix in with a bit of water. When checking for the calories for this serving, it's like 20 calories, of which 10 calories or so are from fat and the rest from carbs.

                            Would this "break" the fast?
                            I think this is fine. It represents a trivial amount of energy, and the body simply cannot be that sensitive to ingested carbs. In car terms, this would be the functional equivalent of having brakes that would lock every time you event thought of touching them.

                            If your system were to be that hypersensitive to carbs, you would definitely know it, as at best you would get ravenously hungry following your 10 calorie carb "feast", or, at worst, you would go hypoglycemic. Believe me, you would recognize these symptoms as they manifest in no uncertain terms.

                            We are not preaching asceticism here. There is no glory to be attained by depriving ourselves of all physical pleasure for a rigid or inflexible time frame. We're just trying to apply some rational approaches to eating. This, by the way, explains why my posts tend to be the length that they are. I could easily tell you how to go about doing things, but I'm more interested in telling you why you might want to do things this way. Once you know the rationale, you can adjust things based upon your individual needs and responses.

                            -PK
                            My blog : cogitoergoedo.com

                            Interested in Intermittent Fasting? This might help: part 1, part 2, part 3.

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Originally posted by iniQuity View Post
                              Yeah, my reason behind eating at 1pm is that it coincides when most people here go to lunch. I eat alone mostly, but it’d be odd to step out to lunch any later, you might as well just skip eating and do so when you get home, which I did a few times with bad results (perhaps for not gradually pushing back the eating window like pklopp suggests)

                              I hate my job, so skipping the one hour a day where I feel sane (break) is not an option. The only thing I think might work is taking my break as per usual, but not eating, walking or reading instead, and then eating my food later in the day at my desk, which lots of people do, but it would probably arise questions from my boss. “You were gone for an hour, but you’re eating now? At 3pm?” assuming I went on my usual 1 to 2pm break.

                              Or maybe he’ll say nothing at all. Only one way to find out…
                              I usually eat at my desk, and spend my break time walking outside (weather permitting). Most people will comment about the smell of my food, but I haven't had my supervisor who sits on the otherside of the wall from me say anything. A lot of people snack at their desk, I just have an actual meal.

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by Paleobird View Post
                                Why is it that when I mentioned IFing like this 3-4 times a week on my calorie counting post, everybody jumped all over my case assuming that I must have some sort of eating disorder but when a young guy with a nice looking 6 pack says it is good, everybody yells RAWR! Yay Caveman! and becomes his groupies? Jeesh!
                                I have to break my 2-day silence just to mention that pklopp is over 40 and has some of the most dramatic before/afters on here, has been doing this for years, plus his posts are always incredibly complete and helpful. Not to put you down or say it is ok that people jumped on you (I don't remember those threads), but that's why people are so eager to listen here.
                                If you are new to the PB - please ignore ALL of this stuff, until you've read the book, or at least http://www.marksdailyapple.com/primal-blueprint-101/ and this (personal fave): http://www.archevore.com/get-started/

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