Refeeding after an extended fast?


(Brent) #1

I’m on my first, what i would consider, extended fast. My longest previous fast has been 7 days. I’m planning at least an 18 day fast (maybe longer if i feel well). I’ve been trying to do some research on refeeding after an extended fast and am really coming up short. Most things i find are for people who aren’t on Keto. They are recommended refeeding with a high water fruit like watermelon which i’m definitely not going to do. My main concern is more with trying to avoid all the progress i made with the fast rather than avoid the common diarrhea complaints that a lot of people have. I also would to optimally bring my metabolism back as high as possible.

Some generally questions are how long should the refeeding peroid be? Is 24 hours enough. All i know is the first time you eat it should be a light meal but no idea after that. Any help would be appreciated.

Day 8, need some advice
(Tim W) #2

This has been my experience:

1-3 days fasting - re-feed any way you want (before I was keto I ate a half a pizza at the end of a 3 day fast, no issues)

5-8 days- eat a small meal of “normal” foods (for me it’s boiled eggs, some bacon, a few nuts, a little bit of butter, olive oil). Make a plate, eat the food and then go do something to take your mind off food. Do not eat from a container/stay in the kitchen, it can easily lead to gorging (this rule works for any fasting over 5 days).

8+ days- same rule as above but add in some kraut or maybe a fermented pickle to the small meal.

General notes:

  • You’ll fill up fast (amazingly so) so take it slow and stop at about 80% “full”, give yourself several hours to digest.
  • Bowel movements may be loose, that’s been very normal in my case. Make sure to get lots of sodium on your re-feed day as too little will result in constipation in the days after a fast, it can get tough if you don’t really hammer the sodium!
  • Don’t be surprised if you get tired after eating. The body has had lots of “extra” energy to put to use while you’ve been fasting, when you eat you have to “divert” some of that energy to digestion, often resulting in a crash (for me, kind of like a post-sugar crash).

Don’t overthink it and don’t believe the BS about having to break-fast with fruit only or fruit juice or whatever, just don’t go crazy eating some new food you’ve never had before and it should be fine.

(Ethan) #3

What about 4 days?

(Tim W) #4


No change from the 3 days…

(Ethan) #5

Cool. I am about to complete my first 4-day fast tomorrow. I wanted to eat something larger than a small meal, but not too huge.

(Tim W) #6

I still suggest a small meal, made up of foods your normally eat, plenty of butter or olive oil and salt. You’ll be surprised at how little you can eat before you get full.

I almost always eat:
-2 boiled eggs, sprinkled with pink sea salt

  • Bacon
  • A few whole green olives
  • Slices of butter
  • A pickle
  • 1/4 handful of almonds splashed with olive oil

Basically, lots of fat, not a ton of volume and only one plate, then I leave the kitchen and do something else, working in the yard is optimum.

(Brent) #7

Thanks Bill this was extremely useful

(Doug) #8

Good for you, Ethan. :sunglasses:

(Ethan) #9

At the conclusion of my 3-day fast a couple weeks ago, I had a ton:

beef tongue with horseradish
2 skewers of lamb
1 skewer of veal liver

I think I will go lighter this time, but not sure what yet. Olives are possible. I was thinking of grilling a steak, but most of my steak cuts are large. Actually, maybe some lamb chops will work…

20 day fast, AKA WTF was I thinking?
(Tim W) #10

I’ve not had a lot of luck with heavy meat consumption post fast, but that’s just me… The nice thing about what you listed is all the nutrients in those items, should have been great for post-fast re-growth.

Late notice - Advent Fast
(Jeanne Wagner) #11

Today at 7pm I will have completed day 5 of my fast. Thinking of stopping here, and maybe just eat tomorrow morning. I have been trying to figure out how to refeed for me. I had a 3 day fast a couple weeks ago, which was my first fast longer than 24 hrs.

I had about 6-8 black olives about 20 minutes before dinner. Dinner was a chicken thigh with the skin on. Lightly seasoned but I don’t know what the seasoning was. I could taste salt but other than that, just ‘spices.’ 1/4 c of black beans, and 3 small bowls of salad- Romain lettuce and field greens, button mushrooms, cucumber, olives, tomatoes, and green onion tips. Topped with Kikoman Ginger Dressing. Oh man the salad was so good that’s why i had 3 of the small bowls. I was pretty full.

Anyway, that refeeding had me up all night running to the bathroom, all the next day, and part of the next night. As you can imagine I am worried about what to eat this time. I thought that meal was relatively benign.

It makes me want to keep fasting for a few more days, but other than the obvious benefits of a longer fast, I would just be putting off eating again. Who in their right mind is afraid of eating?!? lol

(Jeanne Wagner) #12

Last nignt’s refeeding was around 19-12 black olives, around 1/2 oz macadamia nuts seasoned with sea salt (Publix buy), and around an hour after that I had exactly 1 tsp of organic coconut oil. I was fine, maybe one bathroom trip.

This morning I had a full breakfast of 3 organic eggs ( my sister has chickens and she gave me a dozen friday evening), and 3 slices of thick cut bacon. The eggs were scrambled and had approx. 1/4 c heavy whipping cream, and a large dollup of sour cream probably 2-3 tbsp worth. Pink Himalayan salt, and pepper to taste. Bullet proof coffee- simple recipe of 2tbsp of Kerry Gold butter and approx. 1/4 c heavy whipping cream. I wasn’t even hungry because of the fast, but I wanted to break it. Strangely this did not make me feel over stuffed. Going by approx. 1550 Calories/day that leaves me with around 545 calories to consume for dinner. Dinner will be right around 7pm. It’s a birthday dinner and it’s always the birthday person’s favorite food, so I think it will be pancakes. However it is always supplemented with other food so this would follow the breakfast theme and I’m sure there will eggs and bacon again. I won’t complain, although it won’t be as good as mine. :wink:

So far so good. My tummy is making all kinds of gurgling noises so I know things are moving around down there. I’ll give it another hour or two to see if I have disaster pants syndrome or not. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

(Raj Seth) #13

I just broke a 7 day fast last night. 1/2 cup of pecans and macadamia nuts. Jack & dt cola. waited 45 minutes. homecured bacon fried in lard. 6 slices of liverwurst. handful of asparagus stems - raw. Realized I over ate. had some more pecans and macadamias 2 hours later - they tasted sooooo good. went to sleep.
No issues. No diarrhea. Feel great next day at 2pm.
See Jason Fungs tips on breaking fasts. Jason & Megan are modern day messiahs for the metabolically challenged.

(Raj Seth) #14

Oh yeah - also a cup of homemade lacto fermented sauerkraut

(Tim W) #15

My major challenge with post-fast feeding has been preventing constipation. I’ve found that lots of salt helps to keep me moving. I’ve had disaster pants before but usually only within the first 12 hours.

How fast/hard did the jack hit?

I’ve found that fasting for a few days, then having a meal followed by a few drinks makes me a cheap date/drunk!

(Jeanne Wagner) #16

It seems that I have issues with too much (lots of) salt. It makes my feet and ankles swell really bad. I had to cut it out completely for a couple of days to let the swelling go down. A really good night’s sleep helps too, but I find that they will swell up during the day again. I have desk job so I think that is not so good, although until a couple of years ago I didn’t seems to have a problem with swelling at all.

Anyway, it’s been around 5 hours I think and nothing happening yet. I may be in the ‘clear.’ We shall see about the constipation though. I have magnesium citrate to hopefully help with that too.

(Tim W) #17

Good idea, mag citrate usually does the trick!

Having a desk job can be real pain. Have you every considered a stand up desk that can be used standing or sitting? Or, even more extreme, a treadmill desk? I’m building one in the next few weeks.

(Raj Seth) #18

I loved the Jack. Im a lightweight so only have 2 - 3 nips anyway.
As for constipation - if you drink like a fish, especially saline, constipation would be eliminated. While fasting I will drink 4-6 quarts of water with 1/4 tsp pink salt / qt, and I dont have any issues. When I broke my weeklong fast 2 days ago, I had 2 heaping big spoons of psyllium husk and had good movement. I also had a cup of home made lacto fermented sauerkraut so that probably helped too.

(Raj Seth) #19

I am coming off a 3 day fast and cant generate a :poop: :tired_face::tired_face:
Had fermented Kraut, psyllium husk, bone broth, water, coffee…
did I miss something?? I guess there is a first time for everything…

(Jeanne Wagner) #20

It’s funny you say that… one of my coworkers recently got one but hardly uses it. It cost around $400. I wanted to get one pretty bad but it requires a doctor’s note saying it’s necessary. I have stopped going to the chiropractor a while back due to finances… plus I didn’t want mgmt to think I was just jumping on the bandwagon.