Fasting for Autophagy

(Old Baconian) #41

Having read to the end of the thread, I’d like to suggest that we agree to disagree. There is no doubt that, like the lion, we evolved to a pattern of feasting and fasting. The difference is that, given how easily we enter ketosis, it is possible for us to eat the right way and still get some/most/all? of the benefits of fasting. After all, Prof. Bikman describes a ketogenic diet as fasting without the hunger, because they are metabolically similar states.

If you want to fast, more power to you. If you don’t want to fast, more power to you. If you find yourself forgetting to eat and fasting accidentally, more power to you. If you’d rather stick with the standard American diet, then good luck!


of course cause carnivores with NO choice won’t eat carbs til damn near death and then too late and THIS IS what I am saying…animals are who they are, humans are who they are but ‘where do we find the best path’ thru science given now’ thru this disgusting world of food change do we fall? AND ID we can go back further and see real truths thru real body science, we can see it, but darn that is asking as heck of alot of an individual and the learning process it takes to get truly here.

One, a person just wants to lose lbs and get friggin’ healthier AT LITTLE expense and change to this new eating world…I get this and I was one who had to further but MANY can make it work and do ok but my future thoughts is food is our downfall now…we all see it so pony up and learn or be ‘those’ that won’t and never compare cause day to day life, our LIVES and PASTS sway all this stuff in our lives?

Do we all feel almost powerless truly to pay it forward in some way?

edited to say sorry Paul not directing to you personally :wink: I hit reply on that but tagged you but this nothing but a post chat post


ok for me personally over and out…one must walk this and learn truths IF they are gonna spout out about ‘real science’ of what the body requires but we all know in this day and age very very select few see it or can learn it on demand without big knowledge in that direction.

I truly give up in this

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #44

My ‘forced fasting protocol per day’? Fangs, do you even read and understand what others say before incoherently ranting about what you think everyone else should do or fails to accept the truth™ as revealed by your disorganized rants?

As Doug pointed out, you just don’t like fasting. No one’s forcing you to do it, so what’s your beef? Yet you carry on as if those who do it are involved in some kind of ignorant, anti-nature, inhuman self-sacrifice.

Have you got a link to some data/analysis/study? Anything? Other than your opinion?


yet you never answered the question of what forced fasting longer term protocol did you put on you?

cause ya didn’t do il you personally don’t need it and found a real eating every day to make it work for you? You ate all the time didn’t you each and every day or not?

did I get this right? I got tons of links but to US who KNOW better and RARELY DO THE EF on this site, darn do I need to post it all LOL


Lets hear all about your fasting protocol and how you do it now in your life?

sorry but not a big Q to ask

let’s hear from ALL ON THIS SITE WHO FORCE fast!! and great thing when ya started or a better thing as you had years on plan?

we will not eat when hungry? We will not eat the Keto plan per day? We will not eat an XYZ plan per day that works for us and we feel we ‘require forced fasting days on end’ for? failure of course.

someone answer ‘and what purpose forced fasting while we are not healthy and finding a mindset change can work?’ A combo we all walked yet throw that out to a newbie? yikes.

I guess is what I see is massive tell the people to ‘diet’ with forced fasting when all they need to do is eat a keto type plan or xyz plan and make phyasical changes and take time to learn. Yup instant gratification and instant change, what diets has that been show to us over the years and no body healing at all? ugh

cause pretend never works and don’t promote it to anyone…eat the plan…that is key before ever anyone can go further and not once saying fasting times in our natural lives is not good but to force is never the answer.

I see alot of people are missing my point that some NO forced eating is a good thing when starting plan…yet those LONG term on plan get it and can do it, but you will never be anyone else on "not eating to make an eating plan’ to change my path a long term sustainable thing

ok over and out for good, so over what other’s wont see

(Old Baconian) #46

Folks, tempers are starting to rise. Please remain civil. This has been an interesting thread. We can close it, however, if the discussion is no longer helpful.


No Paul all is cool:)

it is ok cause no one is seeing my point as I see it so I bow out :slight_smile: questions not answered and more but at this point, I have no interest to go further…LOL Let the chat continue for others! :crazy_face:


The point of EF is so the immune cells can clear out senescent and other dysfunctional cells that have accumulated. You’ll eventually need to fast once you start feeling stiff.

How old are you by the way?

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #49

My Opinions

Per Bikman I think keto is the painless way to gain the benefits of long term fasting. That, of course, presumes there are benefits. I think the presumption of benefits is what Fangs disputes.

My counter would be to ask: what exactly are the benefits of keto? I think the short answer is living in the metabolic state of ketosis with ketones and fatty acids utilized as the primary fuel source. I would be very surprised if Fangs disagrees.

Further, I think our Pleistocene ancestors evolved the capability of eating when there was something to eat and staying alive between meals. When ‘staying alive between meals’ might mean a week, a month or even longer. We stay ‘alive between meals’ by eating our own body fat - or protein (see below). This of course requires that we be in a relatively ‘total’ state of ketosis in order to best utilize the available fat reserves. Hence, folks who fast multiple days generally note a rise in blood ketones, etc when they bother to measure. This, I think rightly, can be interpreted to mean that our metabolism has risen to the task of staying alive until the next meal.

Is this a beneficial thing? I think that depends. But it’s not unnatural or detrimental, even if extended over the course of days. We evolved to live and thrive eating just this way. Eating daily, eating continuously during each day, eating hundreds of grams of carbs per day - these are the unnatural and detrimental things. We did not evolve to live and thrive doing them. But missing a day now and then while in ketosis not only is not detrimental, but beneficial simply because it increases the production of ketones. In and of themselves, ketones are beneficial molecules for our bodies. And in that sense more is better.

The other side of this coin, however, is that when you start eating yourself your metabolism will use another strategem to keep death by starvation at bay. Slow down. If your body has only ‘x’ total stored energy and you’re burning through ‘y’ per day, then death by starvation is only ‘x - y’ days away. The smaller ‘y’ the longer you last. Part of this ‘slow down’ strategem is also to consume lean mass since maintaining that lean mass consumes a lot of your daily energy. So less lean mass equals less energy to maintain it - hence ‘y’ decreases. This is not beneficial - it’s a survival mechanism that might keep you alive but will result in long term negative health consequences. If you’re young enough and live long enough you’ll probably recover. Otherwise, all bets are off.

Whether or not it’s beneficial to restrict energy intake 100% (ie fast) once in a while is the question. If you’re consuming onboard fat and your metabolism is humming along normally, I’d say it’s fine. You’re in ketosis and generating lots of healthy ketones and fixing any metabolic stuff that needs fixing. Once you get to the point of consuming lean mass, I’d say any benefits are gone1. Loss of lean body mass is the sine qua non of a slowing metabolism. That’s the last thing you want to do to yourself.

1 - I’m not including ‘normal’ catabolic cell replacement here. Individual cells are constantly aging and being replaced. I’m not talking about this. I’m talking about ‘wasting’ muscles, for example. Why are so many veges and vegans unhealthily skinny? They’re consuming too little protein and/or overall energy.

Again: My Opinions

(Michael) #50

They do, but not substantially. If you goto one of the forum posts such as Karim's Extended Fast Tracker - come along for the ride (I suspect a metabolically healthy individual for this fast) you can see that it took him 5 days to drop to a GKI of 0.5 and then it remained stable for 7 more days. From some other very long extended fast trackers, yes, of course, ketones can rise even higher and give a lower GKI, but from a percentage standpoint, we certainly see diminishing returns after 5ish days (more for me, but we know why). Since it was at this ratio that they started noting cures for cancer, I suspect that even if you can get slightly more autophagy, you are at least close when your insulin falls precipitously and your glucagon rises as well. [This seems for most to be around 5 days - and again, I think this is when it really starts, not ends]

I think @PaulL makes a good point about catabolic state which may clarify as part of the answer. It may not be so much the number (GKI<1) as the time when your body has the above mentioned drop in insulin that occurs sometime around day 5 that gets us into this “boss level” of autophagy.

And more to the point, as noted in the articles I linked, they directly affect autophagy. Regardless of caloric intake. We have, what I agree is a more dubious measure of the “catabolic” state of our bodies, in addition to the amount or levels of mTOR, AMPK and a few others as in the previously linked articles. I “feel” that both need to be true. It is probably multivariable, but this is something like how I imagine it.

  1. Anabolic State - low level autophagy is always happening (few cells receive upgrades)
  2. level 2 autophagy happens when you are in a catabolic state but still have higher mTOR (it’s happening in some cells) (fed Keto maybe? - epilepsy/weight management)
  3. level 3 autophagy happens when in a more catabolic state (shorter extended fasting, 3-7 days) and mTOR has fallen (immune replenishment?)
  4. level 4 autophagy happens in a very catabolic state (GKI < 1??? - medium extended fasts, 5-14 days) and mTOR is very low (cancer?)
  5. is there a level 5 for very long extended fasts? Here is maybe where a 14+ fast might yield a substantial drop in mTOR or something unknown triggering another deeper level of autophagy, or simply that after sufficient time the GKI (ak I/G) ratio falls to a new level that triggers more aggressive autophagy

Yes, but is it the exact number for the individual? Maybe it is their current I/G level (interpreted as GKI) for them, based on their current state, as comparative to their own baseline. For example, in a recent post someone found it hard to fat adapt, and their ketones were very high and blood sugar quite low - while they were eating. I suspect because they were not fat adapted the GKI is not appropriate as compared to their I/G level. So are we using GKI as a proxy for I/G, yes, I think so. It works well enough though when noting the relative levels for each individual that does not differ from most others.

While it may be a proxy, it is the best proxy I have to work with using home bought medical devices.

But has the time it takes for your I/G ratio to fall substantially changed very much (hopefully a bit shorter, but I suspect this has not changed as much as your GKI ratio).

Exactly, although I am sure (based on my recent day 10 fast), that skin starts healing before 20 days,


Excuse my ignorance. Is it actually possible to produce a noticable(metallic taste) amount of ketones while in a beta oxidation metabolic fed state? While of course keeping insulin low.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #52

You’ve mentioned this ‘metallic taste’ in multiple comments. In my 4 1/2 plus years of ketosis I have never experienced any ‘metallic taste’. Even when I measured 60+ppm acetone in my breath I never tasted/smelled anything. So I don’t know what you’re talking about. Maybe others can comment.

My understanding is that if more fatty acids are available for energy use than AcetylCoA (in the liver) to oxidize them completely, ketones are produced in the liver. AcetylCoA can be derived from carbs, fats or proteins. So it seems to me that someone who is well fat adapted in the sense that most extra-hepatic cells and organs can utilize fatty acids for energy directly may not necessarily generate ketones in relation to their ‘level’ of ketosis. Myself, for example, have very low ketone levels yet I have been in continuous ketosis for more than 4 1/2 years. Others report similarly.

I have not ‘long term’ fasted since the 4-day water fast from which I initiated keto the first week of Jan, 2017. I do, however, IF 12 hours 3-4 times per week simply because my eating and working schedule results in it. So I am normally in a fed state.

(Doug) #53

GKI may just be “along for the ride,” though. It has no necessary bearing on autophagy in such cases. If we take GKI as really being indicative of something, there, then people who have eaten three meals of meat in the past day would sometimes be said to “have upregulated autophagy,” which is the direct opposite of the truth, from all I’ve seen. We see a lot of wishful-thinking about wanting to use GKI as a proxy for autophagy, but in many cases that’s all it is. If there are cases where GKI is going to work decently, it’s much more likely to be individuals who are not eating ketogenically.

Michael, I read the articles at the links you posted, and there isn’t anything that really confirms anything about our supposed timing here. And you know - :neutral_face: - so much of the literature, even about autophagy, deals with using drugs to stimulate it or damp it when down when indicated. Whattayagunnado? :smile: For the long term, I’m hoping that studies on autophagy for cancer or Alzheimer’s Disease, etc., will give us more information about human fasting, but if it’s happening it’s a slow deal…

However, I think you are on the right track - agreed that the decline of the insulin/glucagon ratio and the leveling-out of it goes along pretty well with mTOR and AMPK, and (specific to humans) I’ve never seen anything to make me think that autophagy isn’t upregulated at 5 days just about as much as it’s going to be.

It’s still a guess, for me, and there are the comparisons with mice, and things like growth hormone not peaking during a fast until almost a month, that make me wonder, but as a practical matter most people don’t fast for multiple weeks at a time, and certainly not all that often if ever.

If we say that glycogen depletion is the last major thing that needs to occur before the body is really into the low insulin, low mTOR state, then getting past 3 days looks important to me. Time needs to go by for the stomach to empty, and then the small intestine, and then the ‘post-absorptive’ phase where the body really realizes there’s nothing in the pipeline, and it’s time to hit the storehouses for energy and nutritents. And later, it realizes that the glycogen is getting well drawn-down, and it’s time to get the fat-burning machinery fired up.

There isn’t a switch that flips from “Burn Glycogen” to “Burn Fat” - as with most body processes it’s more of a smooth continuum, and with regard to all energy sources the body starts using a ‘later in the progression’ source before prior ones are exhausted. Still - by the end of Day 3 I think we’re getting pretty well there.

An argument could be made that when coming from an extremely low carbohydrate intake, things would move faster, and that insulin/glucagon has a headstart in this process, and that certainly makes sense to me.

Most of my fasts have been 3 to 6 days. Being ‘catabolic’ - I’m just one person, but I had raised pinkish-purple scars on both shins for six years, as a result of doing something impressively stupid with a set of portable metal stairs. In the 7th and 8th years after the injury, I noticed the scars were really going away. One leg had them entirely vanish, and the other one still had the outline of them in the skin, but they were no longer raised nor colored as much differently from the surrounding skin. I have no other guess even remotely as good as that the scar tissue was consumed by autophagy, due to the fasting.

Regardless of caloric intake. – mTOR and AMPK are ‘nutrient sensors.’ I don’t agree that it’s going to be without regard to calories, and the profound effect of protein (the amino acid leucine is the most potent inhibitor of autophagy of all, no?) and carbohydrates (insulin and glucagon effect) are mostly what we’re talking about, eh?

If drugs are used to increase or decrease autophagy, then I guess it would be regardless of calories, though…?

Overall, I think it’s sound to look at the situation of when the body is really down to burning fat and scavenging protein, and once the glycogen is pretty well gone, then we’re there, right? And as you say - after Day 5 of fasting, big changes in insulin/glucagon aren’t usually going to be found. I’ve never seen direct test results for mTOR/AMPK like that, but at the least I’ve no reason to suspect they act markedly differently.

(Old Baconian) #54

My understanding is that we need be careful with the phraseology, here. I doubt that even Dr. Thomas Seyfried would call a ketogenic diet a cure for cancer. He would more likely characterise it as part of the treatment for cancer, since he believes that all cancers result from metabolic damage.

Dr. Dawn Lemanne, an oncologist who runs a practise in the U.S. Northwest, calls keto an “adjuvant” therapy that can help with radiation or chemotherapy, and in the last video of hers that I have seen, she warns that certain cancers thrive on β-hydroxybutyrate and not glucose.

(It’s been a while since the last time I watched videos by either of these two doctors, so this may be somewhat out of date.)

(Old Baconian) #55

I get a certain taste in my mouth, especially in the mornings, before coffee, when I am in ketosis. I’m not sure “metallic” is the right adjective, but I’m not sure it’s wrong, either. It has nothing to do with the smell of my breath, so far as I can tell. And it goes away if I yield to temptation and eat too much carbohydrate, so it’s clearly keto-related.

Michael, when you are registering high breath acetone, do people tell you your breath smells “fruity”? I’ve never experienced that, myself.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #56

No. When, if ever, high BrAce happens again though I’ll be sure to help them determine it. :tongue:

(Anita Evans) #57

thank you for sharing your personal data


You realize loosing muscle means more loose skin right? Never give up muscle!

(Michael) #59

:slight_smile: I was referring the to GKI ratio being around or under one with prolonged fasting only as that is when they start to see cancer treatments working. Not saying a ketogenic diet would work on it’s own at all, or that a metabolically unusual person may have a low GKI but would not warrant this claim either if it would not be matching their I/G levels.
I have so much to learn, I may look those people up because is sounds like are thinking about a claim I did not even knew existed :slight_smile:

(Michael) #60

Absolutely, to be clear, 99.99% of what I wrote could be complete BS, since it is hard to confirm any of my thoughts as most of this is simply poorly understood/tested. I am just throwing out the best hypothesis I have (at this time, from what little I understand from a lot of reading) and would be happy to have people tear it shreds with evidence (I would hope), because I am also sure other people have equally (or more) plausible explanations as to what might be happening.