Last fall (2018) I flew to L.A to attend the first ever fasting conference put on in part by L-Nutra; the company that created Prolon. ProLon is a fasting mimicking diet that Dr.Valter Longo and his team designed in order to achieve the benefits of a 3-5 day water only fast but still be able to eat food made of plant based ingredients. What is so amazing about this holistic tool is that it is all backed by science and it has taken over 20 years to create. Check out this link ProLon and scientific research to see the science behind this amazing tool.
A little disclaimer here, I am not a medical doctor so I am not making any claims whatsoever, the following article is my experience. As well, ProLon just came to Canada in April 2019 and I have become an affiliate, I have never been an affiliate to any other health product out there and I feel confident that this powerful holistic tool can help many people achieve their health goals. It really peaked my interest because I have so many clients that do not want to partake in a 3-5 day water only fast. When I came to hear about the FMD (fasting mimicking diet) I thought, this is key for so many of my clients achieving their goals.
My reason for doing this for myself is to optimize my health span, improve my longevity and reset my system. Also to possibly (ProLon does not claim this nor do I) but maybe it could improve my stage 4 endometriosis symptoms by reducing overall inflammation and hopefully reduce my risk of Alzheimer's disease. Here is a great article with Dr.Valter Longo speaking about the latest clinical trials they are doing specifically for Alzheimer’s. BeingPatient.com
Luckily I knew all of the benefits of fasting already as this is what I teach my clients and practice myself on a daily basis by TRE (Time restricted eating). So if you have not done any research on the benefits of the FMD I highly suggest doing that so that you can remind yourself what is happening in your body in tough times on this fast, it will keep you going. I also recommend about 1-2 weeks before starting to eat mostly whole foods and in a smaller daily window, basically practice TRE so that it will be a little easier while on the FMD.
Woke up feeling great
It was warm and sunny, this helps a lot
I worked my regular day, cooking for a client
I combined my breakfast and lunch together and ate at 10:30ish, snack at 3:30pm, dinner at 5:30pm
Felt good, No coffee
A little hungry but those hunger moments are like waves, they pass if you allow them
Bowel movement (check) some gas
Went to bed at 9:30pm woke up at 5:30am
I wrote out a plan of intention for the next 5 days and how I would keep myself busy when needed.
Start weight 107
I woke up feeling pretty good, light and no feeling of inflammation
I combined breakfast and lunch together again at 10:30 am, snack at 4:00pm, dinner at 5:30pm (ketones were .3)
No coffee, I had FMD tea combined with bergamot tea which has been known to increase autophagy
Bowel movement (check) some gas
No actual work for the rest of the week, a little spacey throughout the day but feel at peace
Did a 5km walk and 10 minute vibration plank and was very tired after that, so I rested from noon-4pm
My energy increased after dinner so I dusted and vacuumed my house and felt great going to bed
I took a binder before bed (this is not in the FMD protocol) but I wanted to soak up any toxins that may be circulating due to my fast releasing them.
My tongue starting turning white on day 2, this happens to me whenever I fast longer than 16hrs
This is usually the hardest day for people, this seems to be the transition day for most people going from glucose to fat (ketones) for fuel but because my body is more metabolically adapted to use ketones as fuel I think my harder day was day 2. It just took me a little less time to switch over.
I combined breakfast and lunch together again but this day contained less food, so I saved half a bar and 2 crackers for dinner
I felt at peace and definitely started to notice a new glow to my skin, White tongue getting thicker
I started my period, no bloating, dull pain, nothing I cannot handle, no irritation
I gardened in the morning, went shopping in the afternoon and did a 10 minute vibration plank session.
Ketones before dinner were .6 ( I decided tomorrow to shorten my eating window to deepen ketosis)
Bowel movement (check) some gas
Definitely went through some highs and lows today.
Took another binder at night before bed
Best day by far, I had a little discomfort in the night due to my period and feeling hungry so I didn’t have the best sleep. Normally I would wake up groggy and in a low mood but I woke up feeling super duper fantastic!
I had a black coffee in the morning which helped increase my BDNF(brain derived neurotropic factor)
Bowel movement (check) gas
This morning my ketones were 1.3 and at 12:15pm they were 3.6. This is what happens if you shorten your eating window, my ketones got deeper because I ate my break/lunch at 12:15pm instead of 10:30am
My skin just felt like it was improving daily, it felt tighter and it glowed (keep in mind the sun helps this as well)
Woke up feeling irritated, nauseous and weak. I found this strange but I immediatly made my glycerine/water drink that you start drinking on day 2, drank some of that and had a small black coffee as well and started feeling much better quickly.
The glycerine drink helps keep you hydrated and prevents you from losing muscle mass. It is a great component to this protocol and it definitely made the fast easier for me. As soon as I would feel al little hunger I chose either herbal teas or drank some of my glycerine water.
Bowel movement (nope) gas
1 black coffee
Ate my break/lunch at noon. ust like day 3, I split my break/lunch up again in order to have a little more for dinner. Ketones were 1.7 at noon before breaking my fast
End weight 101.5 (Lost a total of 5.5 lbs)
Day 6 Re-feed day
I woke up at 3:30am, listened to my binaural beats and fell back to sleep. I then woke up at 6:30am felt nauseous and heart palpitations so I had a little glycerine water I had leftover and a black coffee and I felt better.
Bowel movement (check) gas, none
Ready to re-feed my body with delicious fat, nutrient dense carbs and some protein
This is arguably the most important day. For the last 5 days my body was been under a fair amount of stress; old junkie cells were either repaired or removed leaving room for new cells to be formed, this process is called autophagy. My pituitary gland produced a large amount of growth hormone which increases lean muscle and bone mass and slows the aging process (anti-aging). I produced more BDNF (brain derived neurotrophic factor) which helps make new neurons in my brain, I changed my form of fuel from glucose to fat which burns more efficiently and does not produce so much free radical damage. I woke up my stem cells which are best known for anti-again properties, help heal wounds, reduce scar tissue, reduce pain and improve your skin appearance. So with all of that said, when you re-feed your white blood cells in your immune system become super charged, this creates a whole new and improved immune system. While you are fasting many of your organs shrink, they kind of go into hibernation in order to conserve energy. Once you re-feed those organs come back in full force with a new perspective on life so to say
Pros to the FMD
The food is plant based, gluten free and tasty (especially the nut bar)
I turned on autophagy (read below)
The glycerol water really helped me with hunger and heart palpations
It’s very convenient
I got into mild ketosis (read below) but when I shortened my eating window I went go deeper
I felt a sense of peace
It made me take time for myself
I created new stem cells (read below)
It taught me that I don’t need to eat as often as I have always thought
It empowered me
I could meditate deeper
I enhanced my microbiome
I reset my whole system
The customer service and support is great
Cons of the FMD
It is expensive for many
Some people will want to eat more after they have eaten their food and have a hard time turning off hunger
The packaging is a big con for me, hopefully they will just get better as the demand increases
It’s not organic or non-GMO
I did not attain deep ketosis unless I shortened my eating window
It’s not accessible to everyone due to the cost and where they are able to ship to
What happens while you are fasting?
Ketosis is when the body switches from burning glucose as fuel to fat as fuel. After a certain amount of hours of fasting (this really depends how metabolically flexible you are) the body can easily switch to burning ketones produced by fat metabolism for fuel instead of glucose. The benefit to using ketones for fuel instead of glucose is that it helps keep the bodies cells become sensitive to insulin, promote weight loss because the body is using it’s own fat to fuel your body, improves memory and focus and improves blood glucose levels. If you want to get an accurate reading for ketone levels I do recommend getting a ketone meter. This checks for a specific ketone named beta-hydroxybutyrate. This is the gold standard so far for accurate ketone levels in the blood but the strips become expensive. So for that reason I also used urine ketone strips that check for acetoacetate which is another type of ketone, most keto people look down upon these because it does not show the depth of ketosis as well as blood but I am not a strict keto type of gal and I thought both had their benefits. I believe that cyclical ketosis is the way to go for optimal health, it is the way we evolved and this is how you become metabolically flexible.
One of the coolest things I have learned about the human body for sure, along with the amazing function of the glymphatic system but i’ll leave that for another day. Autophagy literally means to eat one-self, when your body is in a state of low energy it starts to break down old cells that it no longer needs in order to conserve energy and become mega efficient. It recycles the old parts of cells that it can and then discards what is not needed. In todays world it is rare that we give our body this time to activate autophagy. We are constantly eating, according to Dr.Satchin Panda, the average person eats 15 hrs a day and according to Dr.Mindy Pelz autophagy only begins after fasting for over 13 hours. Are you starting to see the amazing benefits of fasting longer than what we are used to and what we are told? We did not evolve eating so often and so much. Autophagy won a Noble prize in 2016 for a reason, it is a crucial holistic tool within our own control that helps increase health span, longevity and optimal health.
Stem Cell Activation
I love this part, it’s one of the most powerful things that happens while on this fast. At about day three your body activates the growth of new stem cells. People travel around the world and pay thousands of dollars to get stem cells injected into their tissues in order to reep the benefits. We can do this for free or spending a lot less money, on our own, by fasting. Stem cells are considered the bodies raw materials, they are what the body uses to make all other cells, they are the only type of cell that can make any other kind of cell. Cool right? So if the liver is in need of some new cells, if you fast, stem cells wake up after a certain amount of time and they will get the job done.
To put this as simply as possible stem cells help repair the bodies weakened cells. For example if the immune system has been compromised from years of abuse, or if the hypothalamus in your brain needs a little regeneration, when you fast the body will awaken stem cells and create new immune cells or hypothalamus cells from their “daughter” cells to improve the function of the immune or brain.
So in the end, after one week I ask myself, how do I feel now. To be honest the last 3-4 days I have felt less than optimal. Mild headache, tired, feeling overall Meh and emotional. I decided to take a binder (activated coconut charcoal) 3 nights in a row, increased my eating window to 10 hrs vs 8hrs and increased my nutrient dense carbs. I felt better and better as the last couple of days went by and today I feel optimal again. I think the way I was feeling was a combination of circulating toxins that released while I was fasting and my hormones became a little imbalanced, that’s why I think it’s a great idea to take a binder when fasting and afterwards to get those toxins out. As well as listening to my body and my thoughts after the fast as well, the benefits and work the fast has done does not stop after you have broke your fast. I could have continued with my 8hr TRE daily and eating less carbohydrates but that is not what my body was asking for. I was hungry so I ate and it helped me get back to my optimal self. Please realize this may not happen to you, I am a tiny person to begin with, my hormones are extremely sensitive and I am very in-tuned with how I feel daily.
Will I do it again? YES, definitely. I will complete a full 3 month round, completing a 5 day fast for the next 3 months as long as my BMI does not go below 18.5.
Next month I may do a 5 day FMD with whole foods instead of the box and the month after that I may do a straight up 3-5 day water only fast. I would like to see the difference between all three of these amazing holistic tools and share my experience with you.
Regardless of how you decide to apply fasting to your life it is an extremely powerful gift that you can thank your bodies with. It can be free or you can spend a little bit of money for convenience and to ensure you are not activating certain pathways that would end the fast if not done properly. Dr.Valter Longo and his team have spent decades researching how to properly implement this in order get the amazing benefits, if you would like to experiment with this yourself please use this link PROLON LINK and the below PROMO CODES for May or June.
May 2019 Promo codes
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June 2019 Promo codes
10% off 1-2 boxes use promo code whole6
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20% off subscription pay as you go use promo code whole6sub