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Week-long Fast

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  • Week-long Fast

    Howdy.

    I've been experimenting in recent days with IF and have been kicking my old SAD habits to the curb, trying my best to eat a more primal diet. I've managed to transition without too much difficulty. Fat is delicious!

    However, due to some circumstances outside of my control, I'm really, really broke. Food money is scarce, and my family and I won't be able to go grocery shopping for at least a week; possibly longer. As a result, I've decided to fast for the next week. It's important to me that my wife and kids eat, and to be honest, I've been looking for an excuse to give a longer fast a try, so this seems like a nice way to strike a balance. My fasting record right now is about 40 hours. A whole week is going to be quite difficult, I think. There was another member here who fasted for 21 days however, and reading his account made me a little more open to trying this.

    I ate a large meal today, so the fast has now begun.

    I'm a 6'7" male, 24 years old, About 295 pounds. I'm looking to lose some fat and to improve my general health. Blood pressure's been a little high lately, so it'd be nice to see that drop along with the number on the scale. I plan to drink only water (including mineral water), tea and, perhaps, coffee.

    I've read of people supplementing with sea salt and other such things. I think I'd be interested in doing this, but am curious as to what micronutrients I ought to be taking and in what form. Don't want my electrolytes getting out of whack.

    So, I've started this thread for a few reasons. First off, I feel as though it'll keep me at least somewhat accountable. I plan to update at least once a day. Also, I'm interested in advice from more experienced fasters. If you've got any to share, or simply want to voice support, I'm cool with that. Lastly, I plan to track my progress. I'll try and take my blood pressure daily, detail my weightloss and my daily activities, in the hopes that this little account of mine might be of use to someone.

    Here we go.

  • #2
    Bone broth would be a good option during your fast as well -- lots of vitamins and minerals, easy to make, and easy to drink/eat.

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    • #3
      Hmm. Perhaps I'll look into that. I was kind of hoping to make this a water fast though, aside from the occasional tea or coffee. I wonder whether the broth would hamper my progress in any way. Moreover, I'm afraid that the broth might make me hungrier!

      I appreciate the suggestion, though. I'll have to do a bit of research into broth and how it might effect the fast.

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      • #4
        Water 8 cups
        Juice of one lemon (or 2T bottled)
        1tsp salt
        packet of stevia(optional)

        This recipe is great for keeping your electrolytes on an even keel, and you probably already have all the stuff. I alternate it with regular tap water.

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        • #5
          Thanks for the recipe! I've got some lemons laying around, so this is doable. In the days to come I'll be giving this a try!

          Day one has begun. I work the night shift, so I just got home from work. My stomach's been rumbling pretty fiercely and I finally feel as though my big meal from yesterday has been fully processed. The belly's empty, but I'm not really hungry. The desire to eat is there, certainly, but I'm not at all inclined to yield to it. Just staying hydrated at the moment.

          When I wake up tonight I'll weigh myself and check my blood pressure.

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          • #6
            I find my stomach rumbles more than I am really, truly hungry. so water or other plain drinks will help. Kudos to you for making lemonade out of life's lemons.

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            • #7
              Whoa, that's scary.

              I did 7 day fasts as a teenager, and I have to say that it was neither fun, nor it helped weight loss. We restored properly and all that, from diluted juice to fresh veggies to light food, etc, and did enimas 2x a day, all proper, all by the book. The weight was back real fast even with restricted cals diet, even when I was 18. If I were out to save money, I would just stick with beans and rice.
              My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread57916.html
              When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

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              • #8
                You know rice, potatoes, beans and bananas are dirt cheap. Starving yourself is not the answer. If your family depends on you as the main source of of income, you probably shouldnt do something as foolish as this.

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                • #9
                  That's interesting, Leida.

                  My experience with IF has been positive, in that I've managed to lose weight over time and control my otherwise ridiculous eating habits. I've read a few accounts by members of this and other forums of lasting weight loss after a prolonged fast. Then again, everyone's body is different and may not respond the same way.

                  I hope that this fast will kick-start my weight loss, and that, when I resume my previous regimen, it'll help me keep the weight off. I'll gain a bit of water weight after the fast, sure, but with proper diet and exercise afterward, I think I'll be able to keep it off. Then again, you may be right. I guess we'll see how this turns out.

                  Any more experienced fasters have any insight into this? Do I stand to gain all of the weight back if I eat and train reasonably once it's over? I'd certainly appreciate more insight into the matter from others!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Zach View Post
                    You know rice, potatoes, beans and bananas are dirt cheap. Starving yourself is not the answer. If your family depends on you as the main source of of income, you probably shouldnt do something as foolish as this.
                    I appreciate your concern, Zach. I don't believe that what I'm doing technically qualifies as starvation, though. I'm a big guy, with at least 70 pounds of excess body fat. Once my body starts into Ketosis, it will be well-fed as it breaks down that fat and uses it for energy. There is a fair bit of science to back this up, and I've read stories of morbidly obese individuals engaging in long-term (we're talking on the order of months here) fasts to lose the weight. My tummy might be empty, but with some supplementation to keep my electrolytes balanced, I'll still be getting everything I need.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Do try it, but do you know how to do it right and safely? My knowledge is about 20 years old now, but at the time 2x a day enimas (ours were urine, but you can try salts as well, like epsom salt, not straight water) and strict restoration routine were the MUST or you were told you would poison yourself with the breaking down products. I dunno, fasting as in just not eating for days on end is a dangerous thing. People died from it....
                      My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread57916.html
                      When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Char Aznable View Post
                        I appreciate your concern, Zach. I don't believe that what I'm doing technically qualifies as starvation, though. I'm a big guy, with at least 70 pounds of excess body fat. Once my body starts into Ketosis, it will be well-fed as it breaks down that fat and uses it for energy. There is a fair bit of science to back this up, and I've read stories of morbidly obese individuals engaging in long-term (we're talking on the order of months here) fasts to lose the weight. My tummy might be empty, but with some supplementation to keep my electrolytes balanced, I'll still be getting everything I need.
                        No you wont die but 5-7 days is cetainly starvation. Your body will catabolize muscle and organs for protein, it wont just burn pure fat. Also in that time you could possibly have a downregulation of metabolism, making fat gain much more likely when you return to eating.

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                        • #13
                          It might not be that traumatic, but I would still caution and advise to have a plan B. Long fasts + stress are not the best combination. I always thought a Zen kinda mindset with a fair bit of leisure, contemplation and outdoor access at all times is almost a must for a longer fast.
                          My Journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread57916.html
                          When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Zach View Post
                            No you wont die but 5-7 days is cetainly starvation. Your body will catabolize muscle and organs for protein, it wont just burn pure fat. Also in that time you could possibly have a downregulation of metabolism, making fat gain much more likely when you return to eating.
                            Then what is the point of the body's ability to store energy (ie, fat) if organs and muscles take the hit during times of lean? Isn't fat meant to be the energy reserve?

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                            • #15
                              Yes of course but you dont think people lost muscle mass as well during famines? You probably wont lose all that much in such a short time but you will lose some. Your body needs some amount of glocuse to run and your main reserves will run low in 8-12 hours, after 16-24 you body will start catabolizing muscle and organs for amino acids to turn them into glucose. It cannot do this with fat, it can however get good at using fat as the main source of fuel but its inevitable that you will lose some lean mass. Another thing to worry about is that after an extended fast, your body is primed to put back on allthe fat and then some. Remember, your body cant twll the difference between starvation and a voluntary fast. It will ensure it is ready incase it happens again. Look at anyones physique that does extended fasting. They will have next to nothing in the way of muscle mass and also very little fat but usually still enough to not have good definition.

                              If this is a one time thing to see what your limits are, then go for it. But dont have delusions that this is healthy.

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