Anyone attempt fasting?

Considering a water only 10 day fast. If you’ve fasted, what kind, how long, and any changes?

Dear Sky,

Lovely to see you :) Strange that you should raise this question as I have just been reading about fasting myself. Researchers at Yale School of Medicine have found that a compound produced by the body when dieting or fasting can block a part of the immune system involved in several inflammatory disorders such as type 2 diabetes, atherosclerosis, and Alzheimer's disease. Specific metabolites are produced by the body in response to fasting, high-intensity exercise, caloric restriction, or consumption of the low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet. There are many reports on how fasting and calorie restriction reduces inflammation in the body and its a very interesting angle for discussion. Thank you for raising this topic :)

I have attached link to article I posted few weeks back. Im actually on a low carb ketogenic diet - have been for 3 months.I went on a ketogenic diet when i discovered it could benefit many types of neurological disorders, including MS.Its early days but a low carb, non gluten, low histamine high protein diet is helping me in terms of GI problems , intertestial cystitis , mood and chronic fatigue . I dont do water fasting but I do do juicing fasting for max 3 days - no longer. I started the juicing to help with GI problems - initially. 70% immune system in gut so makes sense to look more closely at how we can boost immunity via what we eat/do not eat. Resting my gut and semi detox works for me. Whether its helping EM or not , I really cant say. Im on so much medication- hard to distinguish what is doing what. I definitely do not itch or swell as much since taking control of my nutrition , that is for sure.

One word of warning , however, we already have much compromised immune systems . Please do not attempt any diets - especially shocking the body, via fasting ,without medical supervision. Also wise to seek advice from a nutritionist re detoxification processes. Having fasted just for couple days in the past when healthy, I can share that you feel damn awful with headaches, bad breath, aches and flu like symptoms. So - needs to be an informed decision with careful monitoring.

Very interested to hear members thoughts on this, too.

Fasting and diet

http://medicalxpress.com/news/2015-02-anti-inflammatory-mechanism-d...

http://news.therawfoodworld.com/fasting-found-bring-healing-diagnosed-autoimmune-disorder-type-2-diabetes-alzheimers-atherosclerosis/

Ketogenic diet

http://www.healthline.com/health/multiple-sclerosis/ketogenic-diet#...

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/dec/07/ketogenic-diet-...

As difficult as fasting is, it would be helpful if others here wanted to join in at the same time. We could share our ups/downs and potential improvements. Thanks Mads. That gives me a little more optimism and motivation. I’m currently on a gluten free, low sugar diet. 5 weeks in with no improvements.

Back in June I had done what pretty much equated to a fast. It was more like a juice fast, as I did consume calories every couple of days. It was due to a family crisis that I completely lost my appetite. Went on for maybe two weeks, and my symptoms went away. Almost completely. For months.

I am not sure what it was that the fast got rid of from my system, but it was great to have a break from the burn. I am pregnant now, and do not feel that fasting should be done at this time. However, I will be doing a controlled fast as soon as it seems feasible.

Good luck. I hope you have good results.
Oh, and you do feel pretty bad. Especially in the beginning. My main complaint was headache. But, let’s face it, it seems worth two days of horrible headache if you get to LIVE again. Even if it only lasts a few months at a time, like it did for me. It was worth it to me. I have 3 children that I FINALLY got to go outside and play with in warm weather. I used to have to stay inside in the A/C until night. I used to joke about being a vampire. Lol.
I had posted about this back in June or July. I didn’t want to give false hope, but I also didn’t want to withhold information that could help.



CC

My wife and I’ve seen these articles and have also considered giving it a try… I think it has promise…

I have to be honest in saying this is something that just seems so difficult for me to do. 3 years ago I did the elimination diet ( strict version) taking about 3 months. This was extremely difficult and expensive. I was willing to do this because of the hope of getting some relief. Unfortunately I didn't see any improvements. This isn't saying this won't help others it just depends on if you have allergies or sensitivities to certain foods.

After 3 months of this tight restriction and no change has me hesitant to give this a go but I hope others that do are willing to come back and let us know how it goes. Just don't forget to check with your doctor first before starting this or any other diet. Please share your challenges and successes in this post thread Sure members will all appreciate your input'.

Hi Sky,

First of all, the doctors who have done the research into fasting state that under no circumstances should you attempt a fast of longer than 24 hours without medical supervision in a proper centre. The studies were done with the volunteers being carefully monitored in a hospital by doctors and other healthcare workers who knew what they were doing.

I've learned a lot about this because I've been doing the 5:2 diet. You should get the book by the guy who presented the UK TV programme that started the craze. It's called "The Fast Diet" by Dr Michael Mosley (a medical doctor). He gives a lot of the scientific background into the benefits of fasting, he even did a four-day fast under proper supervision himself but that was just to test the benefits quickly. He mentions that any benefits you get from a prolonged fast would soon disappear when you start eating again.

There is also the quote from one of the experts in fasting, Dr Valter Longo explains, "A prolonged fast is an extreme intervention. If it's done well it can be very powerful in your favour. If it's done improperly, it can be very powerful against you." I doubt that even a fasting clinic would accept someone with health problems for a ten-day, water-only fast. It's extremely dangerous.

Even the prolonged fasts Dr Longo talks about are ones that last four days, not ten, and involve taking a small amount of food rather than just water.

The 5:2 diet has helped my joint pain (possibly from fibro but not sure) and may have a small effect on the EM. If you did the diet instead, you would still get all of the benefits of a prolonged fast but it would be safe and there would be no risk to your health.

My dad is a doctor and says that a ten-day fast would be dangerous, even for a very healthy person. The fasting would affect your blood-pressure, cause your body to start destroying your muscles (including the heart) and could cause an electrolyte imbalance, which can kill, There's also a high chance that it could make your pain worse, not better. Because of the effects of fasting, you might not realise that you're in trouble, as the brain runs on glucose.

I understand your desperation to do something, anything, to help your pain. However, prolonged fasting is not an answer. If you want to go for fasting, read the book I recommended above and follow the 5:2 diet. There's a website that goes with the book here. It includes discussions about the effects of the diet on pain levels.


Hi CC,

What was the post title, Ill link it in with this?. I dont remember it ,but it might have been when I was offline a bit last summer.Interesting that it helped your symptoms. I do juice fast, so, like you ,consuming calories and importantly still getting those essential nutrients- keeping electrolytes , glucose balanced etc......We stress that any diets, juicing, fasting should be medically supervised.

x


Cheshyre.Catt said:

Back in June I had done what pretty much equated to a fast. It was more like a juice fast, as I did consume calories every couple of days. It was due to a family crisis that I completely lost my appetite. Went on for maybe two weeks, and my symptoms went away. Almost completely. For months.
I am not sure what it was that the fast got rid of from my system, but it was great to have a break from the burn. I am pregnant now, and do not feel that fasting should be done at this time. However, I will be doing a controlled fast as soon as it seems feasible.
Good luck. I hope you have good results.
Oh, and you do feel pretty bad. Especially in the beginning. My main complaint was headache. But, let's face it, it seems worth two days of horrible headache if you get to LIVE again. Even if it only lasts a few months at a time, like it did for me. It was worth it to me. I have 3 children that I FINALLY got to go outside and play with in warm weather. I used to have to stay inside in the A/C until night. I used to joke about being a vampire. Lol.
I had posted about this back in June or July. I didn't want to give false hope, but I also didn't want to withhold information that could help.



CC

I've thought of fasting, but I worry about not eating while being on all of these medications. I'm not willing to go off of my pain meds, but I worry not eating while having all of these meds in my system could be a disaster. For those of you who fast, do you go off your meds? Or do you find that doing a juice fast is enough nutrition and you don't get dizzy, etc.?

Tracey, do you take pain meds for EM? If so, what meds and how are they working for you?

No, no way do I ever come off meds!!!!! .No way would I ever stop any meds unless directed by my consultants. My juicing started with nutritionists advice and GP supervision. Now I have been doing it long enough and consider myself informed and sensible . Yes, I get enough nutrition but bear in mind its a short period of 2- 3 days. Juicing isnt much point , however, if you have an unhealthy eating plan. I combine juicing (veg/fruits) with a hypoglcemic, low histamine diet and plenty of water. I also do a lot of smoothies using coconut/almond milk( plus water), I even add nuts. Its a lifestyle not a quick fix :) . Giving my gut a rest and semi detoxifying works for me. I lost a lot of weight and collapsed earlier last year through not eating properly. My GI problems made me so I just was frightened of eating. I was introduced to juicing and more liquid nutrition to help 'rest my gut' and have put weight on and feeling much stronger. I add an organic additive/sugar free vitamin powder to my smoothies called 'fatigue to fantastic'. Im a fan of juicing/smoothie fasts but with proviso. To stop that light headedness I juice up every 3 hrs and drink plenty of water . If you really want to try juicing I would try it for 24 hrs first. Next time 36 etc... I found I had to tritate like a medication. Or try smoothies first and see how you get on :). But PLEASE under medical supervision. Get your BP etc.. checked out too.!

I do. I use lyrica (50mg three times daily) and gabapentin (300mg three times daily) for pain, then trazadone (25mg at night) to sleep through the night. I don't know how I'd do it without those meds. They make the pain more bearable—well, as bearable as it can be—though they don't affect how often I flare.

jimm said:

Tracey, do you take pain meds for EM? If so, what meds and how are they working for you?

Thanks, Mads. I've done juicing in the past under my doctor's supervision--a lot of work, but it does make me feel better. whether it reduces flares...well, it's so hard to tell. Sometimes my body has a horrible flare day because, I don't know, it's Tuesday and someone sneezed in Botswana. Anyhow, I was thinking of a total fast...but I wouldn't do that without talking to my doctor.

What types of juice do you drink? I attempted veggie juices, but had a hard time finding ones I liked. I think if I do another juice fast, it'll be veggie only, though, and my taste buds will just have to deal. :)

mads said:

No, no way do I ever come off meds!!!!! .No way would I ever stop any meds unless directed by my consultants. My juicing started with nutritionists advice and GP supervision. Now I have been doing it long enough and consider myself informed and sensible . Yes, I get enough nutrition but bear in mind its a short period of 2- 3 days. Juicing isnt much point , however, if you have an unhealthy eating plan. I combine juicing (veg/fruits) with a hypoglcemic, low histamine diet and plenty of water. I also do a lot of smoothies using coconut/almond milk( plus water), I even add nuts. Its a lifestyle not a quick fix :) . Giving my gut a rest and semi detoxifying works for me. I lost a lot of weight and collapsed earlier last year through not eating properly. My GI problems made me so I just was frightened of eating. I was introduced to juicing and more liquid nutrition to help 'rest my gut' and have put weight on and feeling much stronger. I add an organic additive/sugar free vitamin powder to my smoothies called 'fatigue to fantastic'. Im a fan of juicing/smoothie fasts but with proviso. To stop that light headedness I juice up every 3 hrs and drink plenty of water . If you really want to try juicing I would try it for 24 hrs first. Next time 36 etc... I found I had to tritate like a medication. Or try smoothies first and see how you get on :). But PLEASE under medical supervision. Get your BP etc.. checked out too.!

Hi Tracey,

I do lots fruit with almond/milk or coconut milk (not the creamy type its more watery one) ,or juice up with water.Fruits mix of whatever fresh or frozen I can get. Strawberry, banana, blueberries, melon, pineapple, apple, fresh figs - lots of mango. Pineapple is an anti inflammatory so its great one; mango, papaya, too. Dont use more that one portion of fruit at a time ie: half banana/4 strawberries, so to keep it hypoglycemic . Every 4 hrs i do a juice up.

Im not overly keen on veggie ones either but saying that I do like apple/celery, carrot/apple is yummy, spinach/beetroot, orange/carrot, wheatgrass/orange, cabbage/carrot .A little bit of grated fresh ginger helps. You can also put some lemon juice and add pinch of stevia.

Tomatoes and sweet red peppers also make a good juice - spot of Redmonds salt. (Although I mostly avoid foods from deadly nightshade family).

You are right, it does make you feel better. Ive come along way in terms of fatigue.

Maybe we should share yummy juicing tips too :). If you want my recipes/measures Ill send with pleasure

Big hug

x



Tracey Neithercott said:

Thanks, Mads. I've done juicing in the past under my doctor's supervision--a lot of work, but it does make me feel better. whether it reduces flares...well, it's so hard to tell. Sometimes my body has a horrible flare day because, I don't know, it's Tuesday and someone sneezed in Botswana. Anyhow, I was thinking of a total fast...but I wouldn't do that without talking to my doctor.

What types of juice do you drink? I attempted veggie juices, but had a hard time finding ones I liked. I think if I do another juice fast, it'll be veggie only, though, and my taste buds will just have to deal. :)

mads said:

No, no way do I ever come off meds!!!!! .No way would I ever stop any meds unless directed by my consultants. My juicing started with nutritionists advice and GP supervision. Now I have been doing it long enough and consider myself informed and sensible . Yes, I get enough nutrition but bear in mind its a short period of 2- 3 days. Juicing isnt much point , however, if you have an unhealthy eating plan. I combine juicing (veg/fruits) with a hypoglcemic, low histamine diet and plenty of water. I also do a lot of smoothies using coconut/almond milk( plus water), I even add nuts. Its a lifestyle not a quick fix :) . Giving my gut a rest and semi detoxifying works for me. I lost a lot of weight and collapsed earlier last year through not eating properly. My GI problems made me so I just was frightened of eating. I was introduced to juicing and more liquid nutrition to help 'rest my gut' and have put weight on and feeling much stronger. I add an organic additive/sugar free vitamin powder to my smoothies called 'fatigue to fantastic'. Im a fan of juicing/smoothie fasts but with proviso. To stop that light headedness I juice up every 3 hrs and drink plenty of water . If you really want to try juicing I would try it for 24 hrs first. Next time 36 etc... I found I had to tritate like a medication. Or try smoothies first and see how you get on :). But PLEASE under medical supervision. Get your BP etc.. checked out too.!

Juicing - pros/cons

http://www.webmd.com/diet/juicing-health-risks-and-benefits

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2912353/Is-juicing-making-fat-Not-mention-rotting-teeth-starving-body-nutrients-new-fad-not-healthy-all.html

Smoothies - pros/cons

http://www.all4naturalhealth.com/smoothie-diet.html

Two sites I got a lot of juicing/smoothie recipes from :)

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/collection/smoothie

http://www.ninjakitchen.com/recipes/search/14/smoothies-and-super-juices/

Hi Tracey,

I know mads has already said not to stop your medication but just to add a warning to you and others that stopping drugs like Lyrica and gabapentin suddenly can kill you, it's very, very dangerous. Even if you don't have epilepsy, suddenly stopping these drugs can trigger a fatal seziure.

There is also an issue that not taking solid food with your drugs can affect how your body absorbs them. Your body could take up too much of the drug, which would overdose you and give horrible side effects, or you wouldn't absorb enough, which could cause withdrawal symptoms or other problems. You can end up with nausea or stomach problems due to not eating with some medications. So juicing might also cause problems.

The juicing would contain a lot of sugar. As a result, here in the UK, juices no longer count towards your recommended portions of fruit and veg a day. Scientists were surprised to find that juices don't have a positive effect on your health, while fruit and veg do. Removing part of the fruit or veg seems to remove the health benefits!

This is a well-known problem in medicine. For example, if you eat a carrot, which has beta-carotene in it, it's good for you. There was the idea that anti-oxidants like beta carotene would prevent cancer or help the body fight it if it had already occured. So a huge study was done in Finland with 30000 volunteers who were at high risk of lung cancer, they were given either beta carotene, vitamin E, both or a placebo. The scientists doing the study expected the group getting beta carotene to have less risk of cancer and to do better if they got it. Actually, the group getting beta carotene did worse than the group getting the placebo (a sugar pill), they were more likely to get lung cancer and heart disease and they were more likely to die! Another study gave smokers beta carotene or a placebo and was supposed to last six years. In fact it was stopped early as it would have been unethical to continue, because it became clear that the smokers getting beta carotene were 46% more likely to get lung cancer and 17% more likely to die from any cause.

As I said in the post above, studies have shown that you can get all the benefits of fasting, without the risks, by doing the 5:2 diet. It also avoids the sudden increases in blood sugar that juicing causes, which are not good for you. If you go to this website then you can learn about the problems that increases in our blood sugar cause.

Apologies if my posts seem to be all about the dangers of fasting but it's important that people understand that it's a dangerous thing to do, even if you're healthy. As most of us are on medication, it would be even more dangerous.

I hope you'll try the 5:2 diet instead, as I know it helps my pain and there's evidence that it reduces certain hormones and increases others that help reduce pain and inflammation. Unlike a juicing or total fast, the benefits don't stop, as you're doing the diet all the time but eating normally most days. It's not too difficult, believe me, if I can do it, anyone can!



Tracey Neithercott said:

I've thought of fasting, but I worry about not eating while being on all of these medications. I'm not willing to go off of my pain meds, but I worry not eating while having all of these meds in my system could be a disaster. For those of you who fast, do you go off your meds? Or do you find that doing a juice fast is enough nutrition and you don't get dizzy, etc.?

The post was called “Good News”. It was posted June 24, 2014.
I never stopped taking the meds during that time of emotional crisis that caused my appetite to vanish. I would not recommend that anyone one a lot of meds cease taking them. When I realized that my symptoms were gone, I eased off mine. I was on Adderall XR (max dose) and Topamax. The Topamax was at a low dose. But with both meds I always noticed a missed / late dose because my symptoms would manifest stronger afterward. There are definitely some meds that NEED medical supervision to come off of gradually. For myself, at the time, it was just sort of happening. I have never believed that doctors know best. They know symptoms and what may help to alleviate them, but when it comes to my health, my body, I make the final decisions. I do not advocate self-diagnosis, but people should be able to have the final say in treatment. Many times doctors wanted me to take various meds. I went home with the Rx and did my homework. I weighed the pros vs the cons. The doctors can only say, in a medical/symptomatic way, whether something is worth the risk of taking or not. I have a lot of, apparently, controversial opinions on mainstream medicine. I prefer holistic. My body isn’t made up of separate parts that have no relation to each other. My body is a system, made up of systems. Each affects the others in their own way. Most doctors want to cover the symptom, but ignore the cause. I was only on two meds by choice. There were many I chose not to take, feeling that covering up the pain wasn’t worth the host of problems that would be caused by the “bandage”. That’s my opinion, though. Everyone’s got to decide for themselves. Fasting worked for me, even if it does need repeating every few months. Weigh the potential pros and cons yourself. Believe it or not, YOU are the one who knows what’s best for you. Good luck.

CC



mads said:


Hi CC,

What was the post title, Ill link it in with this?. I dont remember it ,but it might have been when I was offline a bit last summer.Interesting that it helped your symptoms. I do juice fast, so, like you ,consuming calories and importantly still getting those essential nutrients- keeping electrolytes , glucose balanced etc…We stress that any diets, juicing, fasting should be medically supervised.

x


Cheshyre.Catt said:

Back in June I had done what pretty much equated to a fast. It was more like a juice fast, as I did consume calories every couple of days. It was due to a family crisis that I completely lost my appetite. Went on for maybe two weeks, and my symptoms went away. Almost completely. For months.
I am not sure what it was that the fast got rid of from my system, but it was great to have a break from the burn. I am pregnant now, and do not feel that fasting should be done at this time. However, I will be doing a controlled fast as soon as it seems feasible.
Good luck. I hope you have good results.
Oh, and you do feel pretty bad. Especially in the beginning. My main complaint was headache. But, let’s face it, it seems worth two days of horrible headache if you get to LIVE again. Even if it only lasts a few months at a time, like it did for me. It was worth it to me. I have 3 children that I FINALLY got to go outside and play with in warm weather. I used to have to stay inside in the A/C until night. I used to joke about being a vampire. Lol.
I had posted about this back in June or July. I didn’t want to give false hope, but I also didn’t want to withhold information that could help.



CC

Linked your 'Good news' post into this discussion CC. Thanks for sharing this! . I started juicing/fasting as a result of an emotional crisis too. My body asks for a rest from digestion , so , like you, I have learnt listen to it :).

http://www.livingwitherythromelalgia.org/forum/topics/good-news?xg_source=activity

Cheshyre.Catt said:

The post was called "Good News". It was posted June 24, 2014.
I never stopped taking the meds during that time of emotional crisis that caused my appetite to vanish. I would not recommend that anyone one a lot of meds cease taking them. When I realized that my symptoms were gone, I eased off mine. I was on Adderall XR (max dose) and Topamax. The Topamax was at a low dose. But with both meds I always noticed a missed / late dose because my symptoms would manifest stronger afterward. There are definitely some meds that NEED medical supervision to come off of gradually. For myself, at the time, it was just sort of happening. I have never believed that doctors know best. They know symptoms and what may help to alleviate them, but when it comes to my health, my body, I make the final decisions. I do not advocate self-diagnosis, but people should be able to have the final say in treatment. Many times doctors wanted me to take various meds. I went home with the Rx and did my homework. I weighed the pros vs the cons. The doctors can only say, in a medical/symptomatic way, whether something is worth the risk of taking or not. I have a lot of, apparently, controversial opinions on mainstream medicine. I prefer holistic. My body isn't made up of separate parts that have no relation to each other. My body is a system, made up of systems. Each affects the others in their own way. Most doctors want to cover the symptom, but ignore the cause. I was only on two meds by choice. There were many I chose not to take, feeling that covering up the pain wasn't worth the host of problems that would be caused by the "bandage". That's my opinion, though. Everyone's got to decide for themselves. Fasting worked for me, even if it does need repeating every few months. Weigh the potential pros and cons yourself. Believe it or not, YOU are the one who knows what's best for you. Good luck.

CC

mads said:


Hi CC,

What was the post title, Ill link it in with this?. I dont remember it ,but it might have been when I was offline a bit last summer.Interesting that it helped your symptoms. I do juice fast, so, like you ,consuming calories and importantly still getting those essential nutrients- keeping electrolytes , glucose balanced etc......We stress that any diets, juicing, fasting should be medically supervised.

x


Cheshyre.Catt said:

Back in June I had done what pretty much equated to a fast. It was more like a juice fast, as I did consume calories every couple of days. It was due to a family crisis that I completely lost my appetite. Went on for maybe two weeks, and my symptoms went away. Almost completely. For months.
I am not sure what it was that the fast got rid of from my system, but it was great to have a break from the burn. I am pregnant now, and do not feel that fasting should be done at this time. However, I will be doing a controlled fast as soon as it seems feasible.
Good luck. I hope you have good results.
Oh, and you do feel pretty bad. Especially in the beginning. My main complaint was headache. But, let's face it, it seems worth two days of horrible headache if you get to LIVE again. Even if it only lasts a few months at a time, like it did for me. It was worth it to me. I have 3 children that I FINALLY got to go outside and play with in warm weather. I used to have to stay inside in the A/C until night. I used to joke about being a vampire. Lol.
I had posted about this back in June or July. I didn't want to give false hope, but I also didn't want to withhold information that could help.



CC

Hi CC,
If your symptoms were nearly eliminated with the fast do you believe your EM was caused by something you were ingesting? Did you consider an elimination diet to possibly pinpoint something? How quickly into your fast did you notice a change and could there have been any other variables that might have been the reason your symptoms lessened? I have no urge to fast but if I believe it will reduce my symptoms it’s an easy decision. I’d prefer to do an entire 10 day, water only fast. Otherwise, if I’m including some type of food or juice, and I don’t feel better, I’ll question if it was due to what I was ingesting.

Sky,
I have strongly considered that my EM symptoms were/are caused by something I injested. I had tried an elimination diet years ago, before I was diagnosed. It seemed EVERYTHING was causing facial and upper chest flaring. I had initially thought it was an allergic reaction. I didn’t get far at all. This is a big part of why I was looking into Mercury as a possible culprit. I had two VERY large amalgam fillings when the EM started up. I read a lot on Mercury and it’s affects of the human body, as well as studies of how it affects the bodies of some animals (sheep were one, I believe). There seemed enough similarities to consider Mercury as a suspect. Though it is a controversial subject, it is worth looking into and listening to the arguments on both sides. Consider what each side stands to lose or gain.
I am not sure what it could be now. I still feel significant improvement. I no longer require meds. The flares are still flares, but nothing like what they were before. I think fasting has a ton of evidence, over thousands of years, e to support its effectiveness and safety. Babies and animals will instinctively fast when ill. It’s a built in natural response that our bodies have that allows energy to be allocated where most needed.
As I said, pregnancy pretty much prevents me from doing a fast for at least the next 5-8 weeks. After that, I intend to fast for at least 2 weeks. If it is a toxin, eventually it should be completely cleared of my body. If it is something else, at least the temporary alleviation will be worth the effort.