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A Dietary Experiment

I first came across Intermittent Fasting perhaps 3 years ago when a friend suggested I try it. While I was interested in the nutritional, at the time, right up to a few weeks ago, I stuck to traditional medical and nutritional guidelines, thinking they’re the best bet for all of us.

I tried fasting then, but wasn’t too enthusiastic and quickly dropped off.

A few weeks ago, a client, through her repeated and enthusiastic pokes via discussion prodded me to explore a few medical doctors and off-track nutritionists who appeared to be making strides with Intermittent Fasting and dietary tactics that defied traditional norms. They had a lot of words, but more importantly, they had a bunch of data to back up their words – something the average doctor and nutritionist simply do not have, relying as they appear to on an established base of trust, the foundation for which seems to be crumbling.

Combining known biological fact with historical knowledge and current clinical trials, it appeared to me that we may have been literally killing ourselves by eating all the wrong foods.

So, before I suggest it to anyone else, I’m going to embark on a 3 month experiment, putting together Intermittent Fasting with a Low Carb Healthy Fat (LCHF) diet, and seeing how it impacts my body.

I began Intermittent Fasting since about the beginning of this month, and have fasted for 184 hours since, my longest fast having been 24 hours, something I never thought I’d be able to do.

My standard line was, “But I need breakfast! I’ll never be able to function without breakfast” – I survived, and even felt better without breakfast. Now after 14 fasts, I find myself feeling awesome, mentally and physically while fasting, and much less so after I’ve gone ahead and eaten a load of food during my eating window.

Before beginning, my wife and I (both of us are fasting) did a complete health check up to establish baseline values for our cardiovascular systems, blood work, kidneys etc, and so far, she reports the same results – feeling better while fasting than when not.

The next step is to change our diets and see if our bodies show positive change. We’ll go low carb, get our doses of protein from fish, poultry and eggs, our fats from dairy and cold pressed oils plus some from animal sources and include plenty of fresh vegetables, green leafy vegetables, legumes and lentils. Calories will be somewhat controlled, though I’ll probably give us a little latitude with that, given such a dramatic shift, i.e. the drastic reduction of carbs from our diets.

Let’s see what three months of that does to our systems.

Specifically, we plan to follow a clinical trial that had demonstrable results, and base our diet on their experimental protocol. Given how much we love our carbs, we may break the regimen on weekends, though given a choice I’d rather not. There are other ways to gain dietary satisfaction and I’m going to use every trick I’ve learned in 20 years of cooking to make it happen.

To ensure we meet our micro-nutrient requirements, we’ll both consume multi-vitamin capsules each day.

In case you want some more reading:

  1. This study shows increased total energy expenditure with a low carb diet; good for obesity and better blood sugar outcomes.
  2. 60% of the people in this study reversed Type 2 Diabetes and 94% reduced their insulin usage or went off it altogether.
  3. The men participating in this study exhibited dramatic weight loss.

Interestingly, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, showed no significant changes, except for lowering of blood pressure, as per this study.

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