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Supplements to augment fasting

Discussion in 'Detox: Methylation; B12; Glutathione; Chelation' started by Tunguska, Apr 8, 2015.

  1. Tunguska

    Tunguska Senior Member

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    I'm trying to find a list of supplements that naturally boost processes associated with a fast, without disrupting it. There's no way I can pull off a long fast (30 days), a week at most if I'm lucky, but maybe it's possible to make it more effective.

    I'm not talking about essential vitamins and minerals, but things like this: http://suppversity.blogspot.ca/2011/10/intermittent-thoughts-on-intermittent_09.html

    It focuses on R-ALA promoting fat usage through its AMPK/mTor patterns which are in the same direction as fasting state. But it's also known for detoxification, affecting the brain, etc., and AMPK promotes autophagy. ALA seems to be a stressor natural to fasting. So it's one I'm planning to use and I already get mental effects from it, which I've noticed work best away from food. There's the whole mercury redistribution risks but I don't believe it's an issue for me.

    Are there any others? Any experiences? Obviously amino acids might be disruptive so they exit the picture.

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  2. Beyond

    Beyond Juice Me Up, Scotty!!!

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    I strongly advise against fasting. I did a 14 days water fast and the only thing I got out of it was a week of horrendous intestinal inflammation because I broke the fast eating... oatmeal. Very stupid of course but read this: http://www.nutritionjrnl.com/article/S0899-9007(02)01097-3/abstract

    In hindsight, it didn´t kill me, but probably made my leaky gut and overall illness worse.
     
  3. Tunguska

    Tunguska Senior Member

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    Thanks, it's a last resort type thing. Not a pure water fast, still eating carbless vegetables for the gut flora.

    I'll take note of the vitamin E but I avoid green tea because of caffeine content and contaminants. In fact I did short fasts with (too much) green tea in the past that created weight loss but I think it did a number on the adrenals. Otherwise I've bulked up on protein, glutamine, carbs for some time and all things considered I think my gut wall can take it.
     
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  4. Tunguska

    Tunguska Senior Member

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    I definitely won't try 14 days though. Sorry it turned out poorly for you.

    Edit: Well that's kind of what I'm trying to avoid, longer fasts. Instead try to make shorter fasts more effective.
     
  5. Beyond

    Beyond Juice Me Up, Scotty!!!

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    Yeah, it was a cool experience anyway. Have you seen "Naked and Afraid"? I am the kind of person that does these things. The first days I was kind of high lol Do what you want, thats my philosophy, but be aware some adventures can mark you for life (negatively), so is always helpful to read about other people experiences.

    I wasn´t expecting it to heal or improve my "CFS" though, I did it for a chronic pain problem that someone on a board commented was solved in a two week water fast.

    What is you rationale for wanting to do fasts?
     
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  6. Tunguska

    Tunguska Senior Member

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    Ha. These are our great adventures now, aren't they. Others' experiences is half the reason to read here :)

    In short, strange mental problems (which ALA has some effect on) and some type of arthritis. Tried everything else, but in fact I've never tried a fast longer than 2 days. 1-2 day fasts (back when I had fewer total problems) were doable but I did them too frequently and pushed too hard, and never reached that 3-4 day mark when immune system gets involved, according to articles. Almost forgot, I did a 2-day fast once that had the effect of shrinking a cyst down to half its size, so hoping for more of that.
     
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  7. whodathunkit

    whodathunkit Senior Member

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    Check out www.leangains.com for some supplements this guy thinks help with fasting. He's deeply into bodybuilding but his recommendations seems pretty good to me.

    I'm experimenting with alternate day 16-20 hour fasts. Word is that a fast longer than 24 hours ramps down autophagy while you're fasting, and will completely stop autophagy for a while when you break the fast, whereas a fast no longer than 24 hours increases autophagy. I was doing longer (36 hour and a couple four-day) fasts in the past few months, and over time began not to feel so hot. I also got sick/crashed again a couple weeks ago. Things seem to be improving now that I've shortened the fasts. Time will tell.

    Halting autophagy is probably what happened to @Beyond and also to me when I did my 10-day juice fast and broke it with a couple bites of cooked tofu and brown rice. This was about 20 years ago. I got so, so sick, and date many of the health problems I experience now starting immediately after that.
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2015
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  8. Beyond

    Beyond Juice Me Up, Scotty!!!

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    Yep supposedly it can boost muscle gains or something like that. These peeps will do anything for an improvement in the Holy Substances of Man, HGH and the All Mighty Testosterone among them :rolleyes:. And actually a lot of bodybuilders are very scientific and well-versed when it comes to getting shredded "as fuark", fuelled by their vigorexic dreams.

    @whodathunkit If fasting caused some of your issues why are you experimenting with it now? Think it has any healing potential?
     
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  9. whodathunkit

    whodathunkit Senior Member

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    @Beyond: yes, I do think it has healing potential. I'm half-convinced and very intrigued by some of what I read about fasting in the PHD book, and on freetheanimal.com, etc. I think my problems came because I was just doing it wrong, even up until a couple of weeks ago, when I finally *got* it that shorter fasting was probably better.

    Some of my recent problems are probably also attributable to fiddling with my gut. I've been doing RS and other prebiotics, plus probiotics, which is typically a process rife with ups and downs. I'm in this for the long haul so will be periodically reevaluating progress by measures like subjective appraisal of energy, weight loss, glucose control, strength gains, increase or disappearance of eczema, increase or disappearance of food cravings, etc. All of which have improved so far, incidentally. Eczema got worse for a while but seems to be improving now my fasts are shorter. Food cravings are pretty much completely gone. We'll see.
     
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  10. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    Longer fasts promote muscle wastage, and gut proteins are the first to be destroyed. This only takes days. One thing that I have known some patients use is a weekly one day fast. One day a week will avoid most of the more negative effects, and can be continued for a very long time.

    If you are taking low carb vegetables its not really a fast though. If there are at least ten grams of carb in there (which is not a lot) then it will also stop some of the protein loss. Electrolytes are the big thing to watch out for.

    I have fasted for up to a week, but not intentionally. I was too sick and too broke to get food for a week about eight years ago. I was fine, but I found drinking ice water helped a lot. I have done the one day fast thing too, but I did not see a useful effect in my case. Funnily though on occasion I have not eaten for about three days and on that third day I get an energy boost. I typically use that energy boost to get food.
     
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  11. Tunguska

    Tunguska Senior Member

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    That's a good point about the autophagy cessation upon breaking the fast, I'd forgotten about. Hmmm. Will look through that leangains site, I see one page but there's always more in the comments.

    Personally I've done the 16-hour IF and the weekly 1-2 day fasts. The latter I overdid. The former was definitely too taxing when done daily for consecutive days, but it did seem to build some resilience and I've done it unknowingly many times in life. It might be worth trying again with proper use of R-ALA and some of these other supplements, but expecting brand new results from it now would be insanity. I recognize everything @whodathunkit is talking about.

    I'm still looking at 3-5, max 7 day fasts to see if they'd produce different effects along lines of: https://news.usc.edu/63669/fasting-triggers-stem-cell-regeneration-of-damaged-old-immune-system/ There's another accutane-related discussion.

    @alex3619
    The muscle wasting is a serious concern and so didn't plan on attempting more than once a month or three. That and impacts on collagen synthesis scared me off before. Also reason to optimize with supplements if possible.

    I've never heard of 10g carb as a limit but I think my produce falls below anyhow. Is that net (excluding fiber)?

    I may try the green tea again afterall since I have some in organic pill form I found under the couch, as opposed to the cheap supermarket stuff.
     
  12. Changexpert

    Changexpert Senior Member

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    Also -1 for fasting. I was on strict diet with minimal calorie intake (~1,300/day) to lose weight for about 9 months. That's when my fatigue started getting out of control, which became chronic. It's been 9 years already and I still have not recovered fully. One of the worst side effects is hair loss. Many people report losing/thinning hair after intermittent fasting. Please be cautious.
     
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  13. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    There was some really old research, and I do not know how solid it is, that a tiny amount of carbs, about ten grams, and I think that means energy available from carbs, is enough to slow muscle wastage from fasting. The body senses enough carbs in the system that it doesn't do serious raiding on muscle. The first place it raids though is the gut ... you are not eating, so it hits there first. That might be good to avoid.
     
  14. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    I was on various metabolically controlled diets during experimentation to treat CFS (this was 1993 or so) and found that I can gain weight on low energy diets, but can lose weight on higher energy diets. The trick is the high energy diets were very low sugar and nearly vegetarian (I started with small meat portions, then cut them out and only had low fat dairy), and super low fat. However that vegetarian diet, which produced initial energy gains, might have resulted in long term decline. I actually improved a lot when one day I gave up and ate junk food (a meat pie). I gave up on vegetarianism as therapy about then.

    These days I use resveratrol (but differently to most) and try to eat healthy most of the time, but not religiously.

    The research actually shows the fastest way to lose fat is on diets with a high fat percentage. The body optimizes to burn fat. This trick is actually used to train arctic and antarctic expeditions. They eat more and more fat so that when they go to the super cold the body can burn enough food that they do not freeze. It takes time to adapt to fat burning. However while fast it is not clear this kind of diet is healthy.
     
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  15. Wayne

    Wayne Senior Member

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    I've done a fair amount of fasting and learned a number of things along the way. Probably the most important thing I've learned is to not do even a short fast without doing coffee enemas to assist in toxin removal. Everything else I've learned is secondary to this. -- I'm guessing it's so important for me because of my own innate detoxification deficiencies--which are not necessarily the case with other pwME/CFS.
     
  16. whodathunkit

    whodathunkit Senior Member

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    Well, the other thing is that autophagy apparently slows considerably after 24 hours, with the 16-20 hour window of fasting thought to be optimal. Apparently, the longer you fast, the slower autophagy gets, and then the longer it takes to get going again after you start eating.

    My understanding (even before starting all this with the intermittent fasting) is that 1300 calories per day for a prolonged period of time basically puts the body into starvation mode,with attendant decrease in metabolism. I've done that to myself, too, although I would not have been able to sustain it for 9 months. A few months was enough to slow my metabolism to a stubborn weight plateau and send my hunger and food cravings out of control. Interestingly, I also noticed my hair loss after another longish bout with calorie restriction, although this time the calorie restriction was inadvertent. I was eating very small low-glycemic meals every couple of hours so wasn't terribly hungry through that. But if your body is starving, hair growth is one of the first non-essential functions it will sacrifice to conserve the energy necessary to actually keep you alive. Plus the hormone dysregulation engendered by starvation can probably push people genetically predisposed towards hair loss (that's me) over the edge.

    One of the things I'm enjoying about this IF is that when I eat I'm not worrying about it. I'm still eating healthy, but I'm adding as much butter to my food as I want (fat is a big part of keeping me satiated and craving free), eating starches, and also fruit. Plus veggies, of course. And on my "feed" days I'm eating as much as I want. Since I started the "under 24" fasts the fasting days just aren't that big of a deal. I sort of enjoy them because I don't have to worry about packing food to go if I'm working or just fixing food if I'm not. The key to success with this seems to be keeping overall calorie intake normal while still doing IF.

    I plan to cut down to 5:2 (five days eating two days fasting) in the near future but would like to reach a weight loss goal before I do that.

    Again, we'll see. I do like what I read about IF, and so far I'm really happy with the weight loss I've experienced, but it all may turn out to be another pig in a poke for me, with unacceptable side effects. But at this point I'm going to try everything I can responsibly try to get myself out of this health hole. If this experiment seems to be going bad I'll stop completely.
     
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  17. MCRobbie

    MCRobbie Senior Member

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  18. Tunguska

    Tunguska Senior Member

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    Thanks for your replies. All in all your experiences were longer duration, so shorter (with supplements) and more recovery time seems like the way to go. @Wayne I'm thinking R-ALA may be beneficial in that way too, maybe green tea if more careful. @MCRobbie I saw your thread before and forgot about it!

    Here's a list of AMPK activators with citations:
    http://selfhacked.com/2014/11/21/natural-ampk-activators/

    Doesn't mean they're beneficial for fasting for disease modulating purposes, but it's a starting point. For example I'm not sure fish oil is beneficial since another study reported it downregulates FoxO (otherwise upregulated and beneficial during fasting).

    R-ALA seems to be the star player.

    Right, but autophagy is only part of the story as I understand it. Also the PHD aims to be a sustainable long-term diet, they avoid anything too stressful, at worst they suggest a ketogenic diet for diagnosis. Personally I got everything I could out of that diet, though I'd forgotten some of those tidbits.

    Now, I don't remember the PHD read including this, from 2014, which was linked in MCRobbie's thread, for one: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/277860.php

    It's come up among accutane sufferers which is more or less a chemo drug. There seems to be some immune reset that happens at the 3-4 day mark that mitigates their damage. Some theoretical discussion that 5-10 days might be necessary, but better to start low. Coincidentally, anecdotally, accutane victims have had symptom resolution from longer fasts. There is where it starts getting quite relevant for me and I start weighing it against muscle/collagen wasting.

    Speaking of which, personally, my biggest concern about fasting came from this:
    http://www.markpieciak.com/2013/09/intermittent-fasting-harmful/
    He goes too far and extrapolates several-day fasts to intermittent fasts. But you can see the info is relevant to the several-day fasts I'm most interested in. Specifically, the collagen synthesis. So I figure frequent several-day fasts would be quite bad. But a 3-5 day fast every X months should give enough time for the skeleton to recover.
     
  19. MCRobbie

    MCRobbie Senior Member

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    Tunguska, one comment Id like to make is you seem to be focused on the little bit of research mostly in animals on short term and medium term fasting, both the supposed benefits and the supposed drawbacks. It cant hurt to weigh this limited data in making an evaluation as to what the appropriate length of a fast should be or whether to fast at all. Rather than put a great weight on this limited data which is mostly only available from short term fasting studies, I did extensive reading from long term fasting experts both past and present who have and had fasted tens of thousands of people over the past one hundred years where the results seem overwhelmingly positive.

    Of course these 'fasting experts' have something of an incentive to share only the positive stories but reading the literature I came to the conclusion that many tens of thousands of persons who came before me benefited, sometimes greatly, sometimes profoundly, from a long fast, and that many people healed from all manner of illnesses from performing a long term fast. Someone could posit the argument that these 'stories' are fictitious, that these fasting experts are liars, exaggerators, snake oil salesmen. Its not the impression I got in reading these accounts.

    This idea from one of your links that fasting is potentially stressful and catabolic rather than anabolic is I think theoretical and the accounts I read from the likes of Herbert Shelton, Dr Joel Fuhrman and others talk about long term fasting as being a period of 'rest' for the body. This how it felt to me even though I was under stress for other reasons during my fast.

    The RAT green Tea study which showed intestinal atrophy which they refer to as 'damage', its not clear to me that this atrophy is in fact 'damaging' and its more likely IMO a process of breakdown that at some point during and after a fast leads to a regrowth and strengthening.

    I cant spend a week linking you to all the references which I read claiming long term fasts lead to increase in digestive health not disease, health which is obvious to the recipient, but I can tell you that the accounts of people receiving increases in digestive health from long term fasting is all over the place in the literature. Its ubiquitous. This was my own experience. Though my gut fell back into disarray shortly after my fast, I had profound changes for the better in my gut for a few days there but I blew the re feed.

    What Im saying is that I don't put much stock in these limited studies which you are relying on in your decision making and rather concluded that the anecdotal evidence for long term fastings benefits is more compelling.

    This is not to say that fasting is always safe and health promoting for persons with ME/CFS. I feel that it can be but my point is there are NO studies short term or long term in humans with ME/CFS or animals with some induced variant of ME/CFS. So there is potential risk for anyone with ME/CFS who attempts to fast short or long.

    I made a personal decision to try a long fast and am glad I did.

    Had I not been under so much stress in my own fast and had I gone longer I feel I may have had a considerable result. I plan on another long fast at some point.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2015
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  20. MCRobbie

    MCRobbie Senior Member

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    The idea that long term fasting leads to muscle tissue breakdown is simply false if you believe Ancel Keys' research in his work the Biology Of Human Starvation. The body during a long fast will take every ounce of fat on your body and use that fat for energy. That's what its there for and the body will only start to breakdown muscle and organ tissue when those fat reserves have been considerably exhausted.

    People lose very little muscle during long fasts, a lb or two but hundreds of millions of years of evolution created a mechanism of energy storage in the form of fat that works beautifully during a long fast. Again, read the accounts as many as you like and they all say the same thing, most do not feel hunger during a long fast after the first couple of days, and little muscle is lost during long fasts.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2015
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