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Thread: The Intermittent Fasting Dilemma 9/14/2012 by Ori Hofmekler Part 1 page 5

  1. #41
    Betorq's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by magicmerl View Post
    I've been weekday IF'ing (only eating dinner) for a couple of months now, and my wife was concerned at the start that it wasn't good for me. Then she was concerned that it was being a bad roll model for my girls (since I still sit with the family for breakfast, and they see me eating nothing more than a brazil nut).

    My compromise is to have a cup of miso soup for breakfast, on the grounds that it is unlikely to derail my fast but still looks like eating to them.
    Miso soup in the morning is a great way to satisfy your family while still maintaining less than 50 calories & it's full of enzymes, probiotics & salt, all things very beneficial on a fast, or anytime. Just make it a small bowl re the 50 cal.
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  2. #42
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    Wondering what people think of this article, if I may paste it in its entirety:


    Don't feed your head
    Michael Anft


    Fish, we’re told, is brain food. So are blueberries, as they contain nutrients that help us remember things. But could it be that the brain, the hoggish human command center that makes up only 2 percent of our total body weight but requires 20 percent of the calories we consume, is actually better off when we deprive ourselves of food altogether? Scientists at the National Institute on Aging, led by Mark Mattson, a professor of neuroscience at the School of Medicine, think so. In several papers Mattson discussed during a meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in February, he and other researchers say that depriving ourselves via fasting twice a week could significantly lower the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease or Parkinson’s.

    The findings resonate with decades-old studies that show a link between caloric intake and oxidative “rusting”—the stress on cells that comes when people get older and take in food. “One of the only ways to slow down the progression of aging that involves disease or organ malfunctions is to reduce energy intake,” says Mattson, who has been studying Alzheimer’s and the brain for 20 years and, according to Thomson Reuters’ database, is the most cited neuroscientist in scholarly journals worldwide. “As is similar to what happens when muscles are exercised, the neurons in the brain benefit from being mildly stressed. To achieve the right kind of stress, people might benefit from severely minimizing their food intake.”

    Mattson and others have tested their theories on animal models and small groups of human subjects. In studies involving experimental mice, neurons in the brain become more active when the rodents are hungrily searching for food. What’s more, fasting animals develop protective measures against damage from stroke and other mechanisms that cause degeneration in the brain. “What we’ve discovered in both animal and human studies is that it’s good to submit your brain to challenges, especially in the short term,” Mattson says, citing research done by several groups in recent years.

    But why fasting? Wouldn’t reducing calorie intake overall also help the brain? Apparently not, or at least not as much. Sticking to an intermittent crash diet, with no more than 500 calories two days per week, primes the brain for protection, he says. Studies show that keeping calories at around that level stimulates two messaging chemicals that operate at the cellular level and are key to the growth of brain cells in animals and humans, Mattson explains. The shock of fasting leads the brain to create new cells. As neurons are coaxed to grow, the brain becomes more resistant to the effects of protein plaques that underlie cases of Alzheimer’s, or the damage inflicted by Parkinson’s.

    “Fasting imposes more stress on the cells, but in a good way,” he adds. “There’s an increase in adaptive stress responses when people intermittently fast that is good for maintaining the brain.”

    Dietary changes have long been known to have an effect on the brain. Children who suffer from epileptic seizures have fewer of them when placed on caloric restriction or fasts. It is believed that fasting helps kick-start protective measures that help counteract the overexcited signals that epileptic brains often exhibit. (Some children with epilepsy have also benefited from a specific high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet.) Normal brains, when overfed, can experience another kind of uncontrolled excitation, impairing the brain’s function, Mattson and another researcher reported in January in the journal Nature Reviews Neuroscience.

    The intermittent fasting advocated by Mattson and others for overall brain health may be linked to how humankind has evolved. There are reasons why the intermittent shocks of hunger do a brain good. “Our ancestors undoubtedly had to go without food for stretches of time,” Mattson explains. “It hasn’t been that long since humanity lacked regular supplies of food. When you search for food when you’re hungry, the brain is really engaged. The individuals who survive the best—the ones whose brains are more attuned to predators and who can remember where food sources are—are the ones who’ve survived.”

    Partly because he is worried people might not be able to stick to it, Mattson isn’t promoting a strict, water-only fast. He advises people to drink plenty of water or unsweetened tea and to eat no more than 500 calories per fasting day via fiber-rich vegetables. He warns, however, that fasting is not recommended for the very young, who need many more calories to keep them growing, or people over 70, whose brains seem to derive little benefit from intermittent food deprivation.
    edit: the link http://hub.jhu.edu/magazine/2012/sum...feed-your-head
    and I bolded the part that stuck out for me. Any comments/thoughts very welcome, I'm thinking of doing this.
    Last edited by Sabre; 09-24-2012 at 01:44 PM.

  3. #43
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    That's interesting, although I won't put any weight on rodent studies as having a crossover effect on humans. The 'longevity' benefit of fasting that rodents get has not been replicated in primate studies.
    Disclaimer: I eat 'meat and vegetables' ala Primal, although I don't agree with the carb curve. I like Perfect Health Diet and WAPF Lactofermentation a lot.

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    5,000 Cal Fat <> 5,000 Cal Carbs
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  4. #44
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    It's a nice non-technical article, well balanced & short. Imo this would be an excellent forward to anyone you know who might benefit from I.T. The only thing I winced over, was the 500 calories/day via veggies. For me, I couldn't consistently stop myself from wanting & then eating more food once I get started when I'm hungry...No calories or very very little works for me. And I think for many others as well. But for many, this compromise may be their deciding factor to do it or not, so it's a good option to have on the table.

    @Sabre, you forgot to include the link, here tis: http://hub.jhu.edu/magazine/2012/sum...feed-your-head
    "Science is not belief but the will to find out." ~ Anonymous
    "Culture of the mind must be subservient to the heart." ~ Gandhi
    "The flogging will continue until morale improves." ~ Unknown


  5. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nady View Post
    Curious about what you would consider evidence?
    Sorry for the delay in answering- I usually just go a page or two back on the threads, and somehow it escaped my notice that more had been posted here.

    I think I was looking for studies, or step-by-step explanations. I don't have the book anymore, so I can't pull a quote, but here's a pretend example. Say he said 'people naturally prefer to eat later in the day.' There was nothing like a footnote to a study/studies showing this, or an explanation of (completely made up terms, just to show what I am talking about) 'Enzyme z, which regulates tastebuds is at low levels after sleep periods lasting more than four fours, and slowly rises by x% to a peak between 12 and 14 hours after rising.'

    I just remember thinking time after time, 'you say so, but that doesn't make it so, why should I believe it? Give me reasons.' After a few chapters of that, I just got annoyed.

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Betorq View Post
    It's a nice non-technical article, well balanced & short.
    I really hope all this good stuff about fasting is true. It would be nice to be able to do a few things to help ourselves rather than just settle for come what may.
    65lbs gone and counting!!

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  7. #47
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    Cheers Betorq. The 500 calorie thing really stuck out for me, I was wondering is that some magical number, or is the basic idea that eating hardly anything for a day or two a week specifically improves brain function? I'm going to give it a shot. Once a week, eating hardly anything.

    But it'd be nice to know more, I haven't been able to find more about 500 calories. I think I'd manage better with one small meal at night, rather than avoiding food all day. I've tried that before and couldn't sleep.
    Last edited by Sabre; 09-24-2012 at 01:45 PM.

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sabre View Post
    Cheers Betorq. The 500 calorie thing really stuck out for me, I was wondering is that some magical number, or is the basic idea that eating hardly anything for a day or two a week specifically improves brain function?
    The HCG diet is based on 500 calories isnt it? They might think there is some sort of magic around that number.

    I dont do well with low volume of food, but I am able to do okay with fat calories, and the bone broth has been awesome!! And the kraut with some CO seems to get me through.

    I started out typing, thinking I couldnt do 500 calories, but now I am thinking that I have done enough fasts now that I could make do with 500 calories so long as I make wise choices. In fact, I am thinking of trying a 48 tomorrow (well starting tonight) I was going to today (well starting last night) but then realized I didnt eat supper last night.

    How long is it suggesting? I might need to re-read that. I was thinking about the Eat Stop Eat protocol, and wondered if that is every 24 hours, which really is eating every day. Or supper tonight until breakfast the day after? Or is he the one that says that the fast doesnt start until your food is digested, so after supper tonight I really wouldnt be in a fasted state until another 8 or 12 hours or whatever anyways, so that would be about breakfast the day after? I need to research that some more also.
    Last edited by gopintos; 09-24-2012 at 02:15 PM.
    65lbs gone and counting!!

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  9. #49
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    How would anyone accurately calculate when their last meal was digested? MRI?? It's redunkulous imo! I go by my last meal's belch. Then the 1st bite of my refeed. Simple...
    "Science is not belief but the will to find out." ~ Anonymous
    "Culture of the mind must be subservient to the heart." ~ Gandhi
    "The flogging will continue until morale improves." ~ Unknown


  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Betorq View Post
    How would anyone accurately calculate when their last meal was digested? MRI?? It's redunkulous imo! I go by my last meal's belch. Then the 1st bite of my refeed. Simple...
    I work on the assumption that it takes three hours from when you stop eating to get back to a fasted state.
    Disclaimer: I eat 'meat and vegetables' ala Primal, although I don't agree with the carb curve. I like Perfect Health Diet and WAPF Lactofermentation a lot.

    Griff's cholesterol primer
    5,000 Cal Fat <> 5,000 Cal Carbs
    Winterbike: What I eat every day is what other people eat to treat themselves.
    TQP: I find for me that nutrition is much more important than what I do in the gym.
    bloodorchid is always right

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