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Fasting, Stem Cells and CFS

Jon_Tradicionali

Alone & Wandering
Messages
291
Location
Zogor-Ndreaj, Shkodër, Albania
My husband (who has CFS) has become preoccupied with this bit of news:

https://news.usc.edu/63669/fasting-triggers-stem-cell-regeneration-of-damaged-old-immune-system/

And wants to try it for his CFS.

It seems like fasting would be a bad idea for a person with CFS. At the same time, I'm not an expert.

Would anyone have thoughts on this at alll? Apologies for such a random post.

Hi,

Not random at all.

Yes I think it's worth trying.

Please tell us how he gets on.
 

daisybell

Senior Member
Messages
1,613
Location
New Zealand
My husband thinks I should try it, but I'm not at all keen. I don't feel that my body would cope with not having any food for energy. There was an article commenting on the fasting 'fad' in the Telegraph online which I read with interest.

Perhaps fasting is good for some, but once you have fasted for more than a certain number of hours, your body starts breaking down your own muscle for energy. I don't see how that can be good for people with ME.

This is an untested hypothesis. Great if it does work, but potentially very harmful. I for one don't want to be a guinea pig for it!
 
Messages
15,786
Skipping a meal or even too little protein is enough to make me feel wretched. I don't think fasting is a good idea in a disease where energy production is a major problem.
 

ukxmrv

Senior Member
Messages
4,413
Location
London
I developed fainting, nausea and vomited on a fast. Even fasting for a day takes weeks to recover from. I'd proceed with caution with this idea.
 

Gingergrrl

Senior Member
Messages
16,171
Although I have not been fasting on purpose, the past few weeks I have had absolutely no appetite (similar to when I actually had mono) and literally have to force myself to eat something every day especially b/c many of my supplements are supposed to be taken with food.

I also have tachycardia/shortness of breath and often feeling like I have run up a flight of stairs which makes it hard to eat. Also, when I eat, I feel like my little energy is diverted from breathing toward digestion and so I end up feeling worse. I used to love to eat and now there is no benefit or pay-off except feeling sicker.
 

Jon_Tradicionali

Alone & Wandering
Messages
291
Location
Zogor-Ndreaj, Shkodër, Albania
Although I have not been fasting on purpose, the past few weeks I have had absolutely no appetite (similar to when I actually had mono) and literally have to force myself to eat something every day especially b/c many of my supplements are supposed to be taken with food.

I also have tachycardia/shortness of breath and often feeling like I have run up a flight of stairs which makes it hard to eat. Also, when I eat, I feel like my little energy is diverted from breathing toward digestion and so I end up feeling worse. I used to love to eat and now there is no benefit or pay-off except feeling sicker.

The reason we feel drained after we eat is because the digestive system takes a HUGE amount of the body's energy in order to function as it has many processes.

When we don't eat, we conserve the little energy that we have and use it for other things, like walking and thinking.
 

Gingergrrl

Senior Member
Messages
16,171
@Jon_Tradicionali Thanks and that definitely applies in my case. I feel like the energy is better spent walking and thinking although in the long run, I know that I need to eat!
 
Messages
15,786
Also, when I eat, I feel like my little energy is diverted from breathing toward digestion and so I end up feeling worse. I used to love to eat and now there is no benefit or pay-off except feeling sicker.
That's probably due to blood being diverted to the area around the GI tract during digestion, meaning less blood and oxygen is getting to your brain.

Eating small amounts throughout the day might help, as can laying down before and after eating.
 

Aerose91

Senior Member
Messages
1,398
I think a lot of the problems we have with fasting is Hypoglycaemia related. I get the same- after several hours I get really light headed, nauseous, dizzy, faint etc..

I know the benefits of fasting can be many in terms of detoxing and less energy requirements (digestion requires the most energy in our bodies) so I wonder if there is a medium? Mayne a vegetable fast or something that would curb the hypoglycaemia yet still give the immune and stem cell benefits?
 

Gingergrrl

Senior Member
Messages
16,171
That's probably due to blood being diverted to the area around the GI tract during digestion, meaning less blood and oxygen is getting to your brain.

Eating small amounts throughout the day might help, as can laying down before and after eating.

@Valentijn I tried this today- laying down both before and after eating and it was really helpful. I already only eat small amounts at a time b/c it is all I can tolerate.