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fasting instead of pharmacy

I am once again making myself visit the powerful medicine of fasting.

I have been waiting for my immune system to kick a few problems, but that has not yet happened. It is time to bring out the serious troops.

Normies hie themselves down to the diploma-ed drug pushers who have an extensive cornucopia of drugs for every side effect they prescribe. That is unattractive to me, hard to watch in others, yet I understand the draw.

I considered scheduling a 20-day fast in December, but there were too many engagements on my calendar that would sorely tempt me towards social eating. It would have made a challenging task even more difficult as well as being rather anti-social to people I like.

I spent nearly all of that month doing an “intermittent fast” – which comprises a small “eating window” every day with 16 hours or more of fasting… essentially I would have regular dinner and occasional evening snacks, but no caloric intakes in between.

That may have helped set me up with a quicker and easier transition to the ketosis state I need, but it just did not make the health changes I wanted. As that failure became apparent, I started thinking about the symmetry of not eating in 2024 … for a while.

My specific goal is 20 days. It will be easily tracked and marked with Day 1 being January 1, Day 2 is January 2 and so on. It also has clever shock-value/bragging-rights of “I have not eaten this year.”

A common question to my plan is “Why so long?”

It is easily answered, but rarely understood by people whose only disease-fighting skill is “go to the doctor”. The damaged cells in my body need to heal themselves, which they can only do in the later phases of a fast.

I recently found The Hourly Benefits of Fasting chart that I share here. The words used therein deserve explanation.

Human growth hormone, also known as HGH and somatotropin, is a natural hormone your pituitary gland makes and releases that acts on many parts of the body to promote growth in children. Once the growth plates in your bones have fused, HGH no longer increases height, but your body still needs HGH. After you’ve finished growing, HGH helps to maintain normal body structure and metabolism, including helping to keep your blood sugar (glucose) levels within a healthy range.

Glucagon is a peptide hormone, produced by alpha cells of the pancreas. It raises the concentration of glucose and fatty acids in the bloodstream and is considered to be the main catabolic hormone of the body. It is also used as a medication to treat a number of health conditions. Its effect is opposite to that of insulin, which lowers extracellular glucose.

Ketones, also known as “ketone bodies,” are energy molecules created by the liver from the breakdown of fats. Your body makes ketones when you don’t have access to carbs or enough glucose stores (glycogen), such as when on a ketogenic diet. Although most people run on carbohydrates (glucose), studies show that burning fats (ketones) for energy is the healthier alternative.

Autophagy is a natural, self-preservation mechanism whereby the body removes damaged or dysfunctional parts of a cell and recycles other parts toward cellular repair. It is the body’s way of cleaning out damaged cells, in order to regenerate newer, healthier cells.

“Auto” means self and “phagy” means eat. So the literal meaning of autophagy is “self-eating.” It’s also referred to as “self-devouring.” While that may sound like something you never want to happen to your body, it’s actually beneficial to your overall health.

This is because autophagy is an evolutionary self-preservation mechanism through which the body can remove the dysfunctional cells and recycle parts of them toward cellular repair and cleaning. The purpose of autophagy is to remove debris and self-regulate back to optimal smooth function.

It is recycling and cleaning at the same time, just like hitting a reset button to your body. Plus, it promotes survival and adaptation as a response to various stressors and toxins accumulated in our cells.

Autophagy is the big motivator for my fast.

According to the chart, it BEGINS after 24 hours, then ramps up over the next few days. “Maxing out” at 72 hours does not mean it is done, complete, or ramping down. This is when a water fast starts doing its best work. This is the period of healing and rejuvenation that I am working to enter. For this fast I want my body to remain in that mode long enough to be really effective. I am for giving all of my cells plenty of opportunity to rebuild and renew themselves.

I have written, documented, published quite a bit on FASTING over the last few years – how it feels, the challenges, and the noticeable rewards. I won’t repeat all that here, or with this fast. The day-by-day, blow-by-blow details can be found here if you are curious:

As my personal best so far has been 11 days, I may share more on this adventure as it goes beyond that.


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