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Posts Tagged ‘Basal Metabolic Rate’

[Disclaimer:  Please remember I am NOT a medical professional and the “tips” in this post are based on my anecdotal experience(s).  Consult your personal physician before starting any diet or exercise regime.    —    KMAB]
My last 40hrs water fast did not go well.  I didn’t complete the 40hr;  I only made it about 19 – 20hrs.  On the “full-day” portion of the fast, I had a late morning doctor’s appointment and some shopping chores.  The sum of this left me tired and HUNGRY.  I ended up breaking the fast just after noon.  Then I didn’t want to start over at 5pm, so I carried on normally through yesterday and started over at 6pm.  Today is the “new” 9th cycle full-fast day.
Why 6pm instead of 5pm?  LoL…  I took a nap and over-slept.  I was reading.  I felt tired.  I donned my CPAP mask and closed my eyes…  Next I knew, it was 4:55pm and I’d not eaten my dinner.  So, I rushed a couple of dogs onto the boil and had a cup of mint chip ice cream for dessert.  (Yes.  I know it’s a heck of a diet…)
My tips for successful short water fasts:
1)  Get the start time right…  Breakfast and lunch don’t matter, but you’ve got to be organized or you’ll never get the dinner cooked and eaten by the 5pm start time.  The later the start time, the later the end time.  (You want to end as close to getting up as possible.)
2)  Stay up a little later on the start day / evenings.  You’ve eaten a couple of meals that day and staying up a bit longer isn’t that much more difficult (hunger / eating wise).
3)  If you are allowed to…  sleep in a little later on the full fast day.  The less time you are awake, the less time you have to think about eating.
4)  Coffee / tea:  I drink a LOT of coffee – about 60 fluid ounces between getting up and 2 “ish” pm – on the full-fast day.  Coffee is a mild appetite suppressant and the volume makes your stomach “feel” full – which may itself BE the appetite suppressant.
The stomach doesn’t have a calorie gauge.  It does have a volume gauge.  If you eat (or drink) a lot, your stomach will tell your brain to turn off the hunger hormones simply because you are full.  The gauge doesn’t know about calories, proteins, carbs, nutrition, sugar, or any of that.  It only knows full, not empty and empty.  And it seems to have a bit of a delay processing between switching from “not empty” to “full”.  For most folks this delay seems to be about 15 to 30 minutes.
The “interesting” thing about black coffee is it gets to be an acquired taste.  I’ve been drinking “stand-up” coffee for about 40+ years and Bailey’s coffee most Saturdays for the last 20 years, so straight-up black coffee was something I had to adjust to.  Now, I must admit, I prefer it to my normal coffee.  (Although, I still enjoy my Saturday’s Bailey’s.)
Some readers may be asking:  “What’s a ‘stand-up’ coffee?”
A “stand-up” coffee is when you add enough CoffeeMate and sugar to your coffee so the plastic stirrer stands-up in your mug.  Super sweet / super creamy.  (And, yes, I have had people ask if I want a little coffee with my sweetened creamer.)  For those of you who may foolishly think to try this at home, I stopped it about 30 years ago when I developed kidney stones.  I (perhaps falsely) attributed the stones to the powdered creamer.   In any case, I’ve not used powder for well over 20 years and I still get kidney stones (grains).
5)  Take a nap on the full fast day.  I’m not a big “bed-napper” myself.  I’m more of TV watching me in the easy chair for a half-hour napper, but it does make the day go by faster.  The simple fact is most of your burned calories is your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) – how many calories you burn just to stay alive – and those get burned whether you’re awake or asleep.  And, I’m generally not aware of food / hunger when I’m asleep.
6)  Avoid watching sports on TV.  Sports are on TV to sell you cars, booze and food.  And, not necessarily in that order.  Except at dinner time:  then all TV is off limits – for the same reason, but mostly take-out food ads.  If you have to watch the evening news – watch public broadcasting.
7)  At meal time, go sit outside or to the far end of your house (away from the kitchen / dining area) when everyone else is eating.  It’s much easier to not feel hungry if you don’t smell the food cooking, being eaten, or lingering in the air.
8)  Drink at least two 8oz glasses of water in the evening.  I drink about 6pm and 8pm.  It fills the tummy a little and helps move anything in your digestive tract from the prior day.  Plus water is just good for you and most people don’t drink enough of it.
9)  You should probably “break fast” the following day with something healthy.  I almost never do.  Mea culpa, mea culpa… but it’s the truth.
10)  And this is probably the most important tip:  Lighten up and learn to forgive yourself.  If you don’t make it through the day – who really cares?  You are NOT a personal failure (in life or even “just” dieting) just because you didn’t make it through the day.  Your imagined state of self-discipline (or lack thereof) is just that:  imagined!  Eat slowly.  Enjoy the flavor(s) and the sensations of eating (smells, tastes, fullness, company) and being alive.  Start again tomorrow (or soon).
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On This Day In:
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2018 I Dare You
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2016 All About Control
2015 Liberty Is Extravagant
2014 Always Remember To Reach
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2013 Ripples From The Water’s Edge
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2012 POI vs Reality
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2011 Chilled Again

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[This post is one of a series of posts about my current diet / lifestyle choice of performing 40 hour water fasts to try to lose fat and get healthier.  These posts are not intended as medical advice as I have next to no formal medical training.  The posts are based on my personal experiences / opinions and are purely anecdotal.  Please consult your personal doctor or other REAL health care professional before starting any diet or exercise regime.    —    KMAB]
Yesterday morning (9am) I completed my latest 40hour water fast (#5).  My first one started on the evening (5pm) of 19 April and I weighed 355lbs.  Today’s morning weight:  347lbs.  So, that’s down 8lbs.  This should be good news, but, in fact, it’s actually very mixed (if not bad) news.  The projection for ALL “healthy” weight loss is NOT more than 1 to 2 pounds per week.  In other words, with the exception of a daily dog walk (15 – 30 minutes) and a single swim (80 minutes), I’ve done next to no exercise, yet still lost about 4lbs per week.
The issue / problem is if I exceed the 2lb per week loss rate – for an “extended” period of time – my Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) will drop at a faster rate than would be indicated by the weight loss alone (the main factor in BMR is your weight) and I will set myself up for much more difficult on-going weight-loss.  Like I said, losing too much, too quickly is not necessarily a good thing…
Part of the “problem” is I don’t (science doesn’t) really know what the definition / parameter is for “extended” period of time.  I’ve read it may begin after as little as 96hrs of dieting with a reduction of only 200-300 calories per day.  Of course, one answer / response to this problem is to begin exercise (actually JUST weight / resistance training), which is supposed to raise your BMR by increasing your muscle mass.  (Muscle cells burn more calories than fat cells, even if you’re doing nothing but breathing to stay alive.)  Cardio exercise also burns more calories (during and after the exercise period) than simple rest, but cardio doesn’t necessarily promote muscle increase.
As stated in a prior post, I am monitoring my weight loss and will be re-evaluating the current protocol after another week or so.  …And I’ll be starting cycle #6 at 5pm, this evening.
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On This Day In:
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2019 A State With No Business
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2017 Opposites Attract
2016 Completely Unreasonable
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2015 Avengers Assemble II
But If I Had To Perish Twice…
2014 Turning Pages
2013 We Are All Accountable
2012 American Sign Language
2011 Happy Disproof
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[This post is a LONG one…  If you are not interested in diets or my specific notes on a diet / lifestyle / fasting, feel free to leave now and come back some other day.  You’ve been warned…  (LOL!)
This post is one of a series of posts about my current diet / lifestyle choice of performing 40 hour water fasts to try to lose fat and get healthier.  These posts are not intended as medical advice as I have next to no formal medical training.  The posts are based on my personal experiences / opinions and are purely anecdotal.  Please consult your personal doctor or other REAL health care professional before starting any diet or exercise regime.    —    KMAB]
This morning I completed my fourth 40 hour water fast.  I hope at some point I’ll start looking forward to them.  So far, they are more of just a grind (before I start).  Once I get going, they are not too bad.  The time does go by more quickly than you would think – and it “really” is just one day.  Then, you have “effectively” two days to eat.
General reaction…  I’m feeling fine.  Maybe a little healthier, even.  I’m not losing any significant amounts of weight (qualified statement), yet.  When I do veggie-juice fasting, I tend to lose a pound a day (sometimes two pounds).  This makes jumping on the scale every morning VERY psychologically encouraging / re-enforcing.  This method of fasting (40hr water fast) is not “intended” (by me) to lose weight as much as it is for losing fat.  The weight will come off as a by-product of fat reduction and is itself not the primary objective / goal.
The morning before my first 40 hours (Tuesday 19 April), I weighed in at 355lbs.  Today, I’ve had my second consecutive day at 350lbs.  This is 5lbs in roughly 11 days.  That is actually excessive!  The short term goal is .5 to 1lb per week.  This rate is meant to ensure I don’t over stimulate my metabolic response to a lack of calories.  For anyone who doesn’t know:  a prolonged shortage of daily caloric intake stimulates a “starvation reaction” in your body which results in a lowered metabolic rate (BMR).  This lowered BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate) means you will burn fewer calories to maintain / retain as much energy (fat stores) as possible.  Your body doesn’t know you’re fasting.  It thinks you’re starving and therefore it starts “shutting down” / reducing cellular activities to extend the calories (fat) it knows it has.
More specifically (as I understand it…):
Triglycerides (in your bloodstream) provide energy for warmth, but they also provide energy for all of the other functions of the cell.  We all have cells, called “fat cells” (brown and white) whose job it is to extract “extra” triglycerides and cholesterol from the blood and convert them into “true” fat for longer term energy use when called on / needed.  First we burn the energy in the cell.  Then we burn the energy in the bloodstream.  Then we burn the energy in the fat cells.  The body – as an organism and as individual cells – is continuously monitoring how much energy is available and sending out messages (via chemicals / hormones – mainly insulin from our pancreas) about the needs for energy.  There is a spectrum of reaction.  It is not a true “light-switch” – on or off.
Fasting:  I start each fast period at 5pm…  (Info about hours in the fasting process is from various fasting websites.  All times should be taken as “about / around”, and not as absolutes.  No one’s body reactions function as on-off switches set to fixed timers.)
12 hours.  Food consumed has been burned. …  (to me 5am)
14 hours.  Body has converted to using stored fat as energy. …  (to me 7am)
16 hours.  Body starts to ramp up the fat burning.  …  (to me 9am)
18 hours.  Human Growth Hormone starts to skyrocket.  …  (to me 11am)
24 hours.  Autophagy begins.  …  (to me 5pm)
36 hours.  Autophagy 300% increase.   …  (to me 5am)
48 hours.  Autophagy increases 30% more.   …  (to me, 40 hours ends at 9am)
72 hours.  Autophagy maxes out.   …  (I don’t go here / this long.)
During autophagy, the cells remove unwanted molecules and dysfunctional parts.  Sometimes, autophagy destroys some of these molecules and parts.  Other times, the cell recycles these parts into new components.  The term “autophagy” derives from the Ancient Greek for “self-eating.”
Depending on the individual’s metabolism, significant autophagy may take two to four days of fasting in our bodies.  Autophagy is believed to begin when glucose and insulin levels drop considerably.  Animal studies have shown evidence of autophagy after 24 hours of fasting, which starts peaking at around 48 hours of fasting.  (These last three sentences are “evolving” science.  I have not found a definition of “significant autophagy”.  As near as I can tell, we don’t know the trigger levels or the peak point(s).  I think there is likely to be a spectrum for both.)
A key sign of autophagy is reduced appetite.  It’s likely due to changed levels of hormones like glucagon and insulin.  Specifically, levels of glucagon tend to increase during autophagy.  Glucagon helps manage your blood sugar levels and has been shown to suppress appetite.
Cells use autophagy to get rid of damaged proteins and organelles.  Autophagy “may” counteract “some of” the negative effects of ageing on the body.  Despite advertising claims, I don’t believe this (anti-ageing claim) is settled science.
While it may be difficult to properly measure autophagy, here are some signs of autophagy:  Low blood glucose – When your blood sugar drops, your body raises cortisol, growth hormones, and ketones.  This can enable the beginning of autophagy.  Elevated ketones – as your blood sugar lowers, your ketones elevate.  You can buy strips over the counter (OTC) for home use in measuring ketones in urine.  You can also get OTC blood meters.  I do not currently use either method for testing and am not planning to.  I do get blood workups prior to my doctor appointments at least twice a year.
Because you are fasting and you need a source of energy, your body will use stored fat.  Ketones are chemicals made in your liver.  They are known as “endogenous” ketones because they’re produced by your body.  Your liver turns fat into ketones, then sends the ketones into your bloodstream.  Your muscles and other tissues can use the ketones (energy molecules) for fuel similarly to glucose / sugar.
You produce ketones when you don’t have enough of the hormone insulin in your body to turn sugar (or “glucose”) into energy.  An insulin response (increase) occurs whenever we eat.  The level of response varies, but seems to relate to the amount of sugar molecules in the food.  Insulin regulates the use / burning of carbohydrates, fats and protein by promoting the absorption of glucose / sugar molecules from the blood into liver, fat and skeletal muscle cells.
All of this is kind of a circular explanation and very much a lay-person’s explanation for how (I understand) our bodies work.
Basically, AFTER 72 hours, your body has reached the maximum RATE of self-healing / anti-ageing.  Depending on the amount of fat you have in your body, you will continue to burn FAT (and other tissue) until your body chemistry says “I think we’re starving!”  At that point, your metabolic rate will start to fall as the body first tries to reduce energy consumption.  If that fails (you don’t resume eating), the body will begin to digest muscles and organs for their energy and proteins to protect the most critical body functions (mainly the heart and kidneys).  At this point, fasting for fat / weight loss is self-defeating, because you are losing proportionately more non-fat cells than fat cells.
Because I cut off my water fasts at 40 hours, I “only” have a maximum of 4 hours at the 300% increase rate in each cycle.  It remains to be seen how long it will take my body to adapt a long term response to this fasting regimen.  According to the fasting proselytizers, I (we) can continue the cycle indefinitely until I (we) reach a desired weight / fat level and then I / you simply play with the number of hours between cycles to establish a personal maintenance level.  I guess I’ll find out…
In the meantime, my plan is to continue my current alternating cycles for another 10 days to see how much weight I lose.  If it continues at this rate (5lbs lost over 10 days), I will extend the number of hours between fast cycles by 24 hours to slow down the loss (goal is .5lb to 1lbs per week).  Remember, the “goal” is fat reduction, NOT weight loss, while maintaining my metabolic rate (BMR).  This will (hopefully) maximize fat loss, weight loss and health all at the same time…
Two final points:  1)  Bile is stored in the gall bladder.  I had my gall bladder removed 10 years ago.  The body uses bile to emulsify (mix) fat in with water (blood) for transport around the body.  The gall bladder does not make bile.  Bile is made in the liver (like ketones).  Bile is made continuously and excess is stored in the gall bladder for quick release when we ingest fatty foods.  Bile use (gall bladder) and production (liver) is increased when we eat fatty foods, but it is a delayed response.  I have not been able to determine how this (use or production) effects fasting per se.  I do know if I “binge” on something fatty on breaking fast, I will have indigestion and get the trots – at least that’s what these first four cycles have shown.  Your response to renewed eating may vary.  And…
2)  I have seen numerous videos about “one-meal-a-day” and “alternate-day” fasting, which state most people cannot eat sufficient calories on an eat-day to make up for the calories not eaten on a fast day.  This is NOT true for me.  For whatever reason, I seem to be more than capable of making up for calories missed over a single day of fasting.  I spent almost two years trying OMAD, intermittent timed fasting and alternate day fasting.  All three seem to work (for me) for maintenance (slowed regaining) periods, but none of them worked for extended weight loss.  In other words:  they would help me maintain a plateau, but they didn’t help me continue to lose weight.  I should restate:  my goals for those diets / fasts / lifestyles were weight reduction, not fat loss;  and, both the intermittent timed fasts and the alternate day fasts were severe calorie restriction diets (days) – typically between 500 – 700 calories, NOT water fasts (days) – 0 – or near 0 calories.  I NEVER got to the 18hr (let alone the 24hr) mark without eating something.
Why do either of these points matter?  1)  because I am trying to reduce body fat, so it seems reasonable (to me) to assume fat transport is a factor.  And, 2)  because while 0 and near 0 days sounds more extreme than restriction, at least they offer an explanation for why you need to do it.  It appears physiological time (time between meals) is at least as important as calories.  This is an interesting wrinkle for me.
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On This Day In:
2021 Our Identity Crisis Continues
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2019 Anything / Everything
2018 Touching A Nerve
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2017 Did I See You In Chapter 13?
2016 As I Recall
2015 Less And More Irritation
2014 That Marvelous Feeling
2013 Exceptional
2012 A Wild And Crazy Believer
2011 A Lack Of Scarcity
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[The following are two excerpts from an article I recently read on the benefits / effectiveness of increasing exercise on long-term weight loss.  I highly recommend clicking on the links to read the original article(s).    —    KMAB]
University of Alabama obesity researcher David Allison sums up the research this way:  Adding physical activity has a very modest effect on weight loss — “a lesser effect than you’d mathematically predict,” he said.
We’ve long thought of weight loss in simple “calories in, calories out” terms.  In a much-cited 1958 study, researcher Max Wishnofsky outlined a rule that many organizations — from the Mayo Clinic to Livestrong — still use to predict weight loss:  A pound of human fat represents about 3,500 calories;  therefore, cutting 500 calories per day, through diet or physical activity, results in about a pound of weight loss per week.  Similarly, adding 500 calories a day results in a weight gain of about the same.
Today, researchers view this rule as overly simplistic.  They now think of human energy balance as “a dynamic and adaptable system,” as one study describes.  When you alter one component — cutting the number of calories you eat in a day to lose weight, doing more exercise than usual — this sets off a cascade of changes in the body that affect how many calories you use up and, in turn, your bodyweight.
There are three main components to energy expenditure, (Alexxai) Kravitz explained:  1) basal metabolic rate, or the energy used for basic functioning when the body is at rest;  2) the energy used to break down food;  and,  3) the energy used in physical activity.
We have very little control over our basal metabolic rate, but it’s our biggest energy hog.  “It’s generally accepted that for most people, the basal metabolic rate accounts for 60 to 80 percent of total energy expenditure,” Kravitz said.  Digesting food accounts for about 10 percent.
That leaves only 10 to 30 percent for physical activity, of which exercise is only a subset.  (You can read more about this concept here and here.)
“It’s not nothing, but it’s not nearly equal to food intake — which accounts for 100 percent of the energy intake of the body,” Kravitz said. “This is why it’s not so surprising that exercise leads to [statistically] significant, but small, changes in weight.”
     —     Julia Belluz and Javier Zarracina
From the article:  “Why You Shouldn’t Exercise to Lose Weight, Explained With 60+ Studies
The article appeared in (on):  “www.vox.com
I found the article at:  https://getpocket.com/explore/item/why-you-shouldn-t-exercise-to-lose-weight-explained-with-60-studies
The original article appears at:  https://www.vox.com/2016/4/28/11518804/weight-loss-exercise-myth-burn-calories
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On This Day In:
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2015 A Good Present
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2011 Outlaw’s Music
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This is a long post!  (You’ve been warned…)
The end of day seventeen and the morning of day eighteen…  Elvis has left the building, folks…
Morning weight:  348lbs.  (on Day 18)
I am down / down “5/25”.  As in, 5lbs down from yesterday and 25lbs down from my fasting start weight:  373lbs (the morning of Day 1).
Yesterday morning (the early morning hours of Day 17), I didn’t sleep well.  I got out of bed a little before 3am and by dawn I’d “cheated” on my blend fast by having a two handfuls of nuts.  The rest of the day I was able to stick with my juice blend and felt pretty good in saying the cheats were aberrations and I was continuing my fast count.  Well, today the desire to chew (and taste something different) got the better of me and I had two slices of toast and two slices of pizza.  I said (in yesterday’s post) if I cheated again, I’d have to call the blend fast done, so that’s what I’m doing in this post.
The “interesting” thing is I’ve now had two five(5) pound changes in the last week.  I gained five pounds overnight a few days ago, and between yesterday and today, I’ve now lost five pounds.  It is routine to lose 5 to 7 pounds in the first day or two of a fast.  This is due to loss of stomach contact and some initial water weight loss (due to decrease of sugar and salt in the diet).  It is not common (in my experience) for this to happen after the first week without some significant change.  I have not restricted water or exercised excessively, so I have to assume there is “something” else going on in my body which is beyond my experience.  As such, and because of my prior comments about “cheating again and ending the fast”, I’m going to modify my behavior to more moderate eating habits (i.e. I’m going to start consuming / chewing food).
Below are the images from my scale to mark the end of the fast:
Image of scale at High end of Blend fast (348lbs) Image of scale at Low end of Blend fast (343lbs)
High end of Blend fast (348lbs) Low end of Blend fast (343lbs)
As per normal, there is a five(5) pounds variance between my “high” and “low” weights.  As explained in previous posts, the high is from me pressing my toes and the low is from pressing my heels.  When I last took my weight on a digital scale at my doctor’s office, their scale showed two(2) pounds less than my low for that day.  I wasn’t pressing forward or backwards.  And, again, I don’t know if their scale is programmed to subtract estimated clothing weight (or how much they might have subtracted).  As I’ve been using the “high” weigh-in, I feel I’m being conservative (and fair).
To summarize:  I started my “blending” fast with the parallel goals of completing one week without chewing while sticking to a plant (vegetable, fruit and legume) based liquefied diet; and, to jump-start myself on my Alternate Day Fasting (ADF) diet which I had started way back in February, but had not stuck to fairly.  I’ve ended up completing the first of the original goals and, in fact, doubling the time to two full weeks.  I said at the end of the second week, I’d like to push through for a third full week, but I was considering the process as “day-to-day” from there on.  I ended up making it through two days (Days 15 and 16), and now have cheated on two consecutive days (Days 17 and 18).  At this point, I’m calling the fast done and moving on to the second goal:  switching to the Alternate Day Fasting (ADF) or a “Modified” ADF or to a Intermittent Time Fasting lifestyle – maybe trying “One-Meal-A-Day” (OMAD).
So, which will I choose?  I don’t know…  I’m not sure I have to choose one over the others.  With the exception of having a defined protocol, I’m not sure there is any advantage to picking one of them over the others, so for the time being, I’m leaning to trying a bit of a mix and match to see which “works” for me.
Having said that, what will be my criteria:
1)  Although only specifically stated for the ADF protocol, I believe it is necessary for me to establish a longer and more consistent sleep period and schedule.  I’m therefor committing to trying to get a minimum of seven(7) hours each night.  I will set my start time for 11pm and end to 7am.
2)  A “strict” ADF or MADF has a low-calorie day and a normal-calorie day, with both tending to use windows to extend the daily fast time period.  The preference is to wait until 10am or 11am to break the fast each day and to close the window for eating (and drinking) at least three hours prior to going to bed.  For me, this would mean, no more eating or drinking (the exception being the water required to swallow my heart pills and vitamins before bed), after 8pm.  This will give me a fasting period of 15 to 16 hours each day, with eating windows of 9 to 8 hours on both the “fasting” and “normal” days.
3)  No matter which day or time period, water, black coffee, black tea and green tea are allowed —  EXCEPT during the three hours before bed, when I am only allowed enough water to take my heart medications.
4)  On “fasting” days I will try to limit myself to between 700 and 1,100 calories per day.  These numbers are fairly arbitrary:  the low end is the “recommended” fasting number for adult males doing an ADF.  The upper number is from my prior experience using the “Fat Smash Diet“.  This “high” number is not a caloric limit that many people could live with for very long.  I no longer believe dieting is simply “calories in < calories out = weight loss”.  I now believe limiting “calories in” too severely, over too long a period of time (one or two weeks), simply tells the body to lower your normal basal metabolic rate (BMR – how many calories you need to sustain life in a state of coma).  This makes it difficult to continue to lose weight and even more difficult to continue to keep the lost weight off.  It has also been shown that it is much more difficult to restore or raise the BMR to a previous level once you have lowered it than it was to lower it to start off with.  Basically, we must somehow lose weight while not lowering the BMR.  This means your body must not sense it is ever in a prolonged period of caloric deficit.  The “trick” is to lower the average caloric input over time while convincing the body you are never “really” dieting.  This is the goal of the ADF and the ITF methods.  On ADF, you eat as “normally” as you wish during your eating window.  On the ITF, you not only can eat as much as you wish, you can eat anything you wish – as long as you stay within your eating window.
5)  I must also maintain a reasonable protocol for increasing and maintaining my “calories-out” portion of the formula.  I currently walk my dog each day for 30 minutes (about 1 mile).  I also swim a couple of times a week for 60 minutes per session.  Our local pool will be closing for the winter soon, so I will need to commit to using a “gym” more frequently.  Swimming has a natural advantage over typical gym workouts.  I believe the three main ones to be: swimming tends to be a continuous whole body workout; swimming tends to be less damaging to the support joints (feet, ankles, knees, hips, and spine; and, finally, water transfers heat energy significantly faster than air, which means you will burn more calories to maintain your own body temperature in water than you will do in air of equal temperature.  The combination of these advantages means I will need to go to the gym more frequently and stay (exercise) longer than I would have to by swimming.  The only advantages of the gym (that I know of) are: you can increase your muscle mass to body weight ratio and you can increase your flexibility.  Swimming tends to make bodies long and lean, but not strong and flexible.  Weights and calisthenics will tend to increase muscle density, muscle size and flexibility (if done in conjunction with proper stretching), but not provide a long and lean appearance.  Bottom line:  go to the gym 4-5 times a week and stay for 90 minutes, including weights, stretching and cardio work in each session.
6)  My new protocol will be a rotation of fast day, eat day, OMAD day.  All three will be time restricted, but the window will vary between days: fasting(8 hrs), eating(6 hrs) and OMAD(5 hrs).  Most fasting days will be two eggs, beans(1 can / 1.5 cups) and rice(1/2 cup), and fruits and veggies(no limit).  Most eating days will be two eggs or oatmeal, salad or fruit(no limit) for lunch, normal dinner.  Most OMAD days will be egg(1) and fruit, large dinner (all I can eat / anything I want); if I want a “snack / desert” on my OMAD, it must be eaten 75 minutes to 1 hour before the daily eating window closes.  Water, black coffee, and black tea are any day / any time.  Fruit juice or veggie-fruit blends are only allowed on eating or OMAD days and only during the windows.
I will begin the protocol tomorrow.  I will continue to post images on my MADF page each day and my weight on my “Sweat Equity” pages, but I will not be creating a daily post specifically about this protocol.  I will try to update (via posting) a couple of times a month if I have anything interesting to say.  If I have any significant health changes as a result of the protocol, I will post about those.  And, so it goes, a “lifestyle” with the simple acknowledgement that vacations, holidays, birthdays, and exceptions will happen…  And, you just deal with them.
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On This Day In:
2018 I’ll Trade You…
2017 Luv Me Some Meat Loaf
2016 Unless Your Name Is #AmnestyDon
2015 A Tentative First Step
2014 Making People
2013 On Reading Books
2012 On America
2011 Shiver, Me Timbers!
2010 Fiduciary Breakdown

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The end of day nine and (now) most of the way through day ten…
Morning weight: 358lbs.  (on Day 10)
I am down / down “1/15”.  As in, 1lb down from yesterday and 15lbs down from my fasting start weight: 373lbs (the morning of Day 1).  Compared to today (Day 10), yesterday (Day 9) was easy.  Maybe it’s a hangover from yesterday’s flu shot at the doctor’s office, or not, I don’t know.  I woke up feeling “fuzzy”.  I walked the dog (like every morning), but I kind of “woke up” every now and then realizing I was walking along just staring at the sidewalk.  The day was grey and overcast, so I wasn’t missing anything brilliant, but I really have little to no recollection of most of the walk.  I’m tempted to blame it on low blood-sugar level, but that normally feels weakening, not fuzzy around the edges.  Anyway, I got home and drank some “swamp-juice” and started feeling better.
Most of yesterday was just “chillin’.  I remain “mildly” surprised at how much extra time blogging takes up during these fasts.  It’s my own fault for trying to keep a running daily tab, but this “journaling” is the closest I come to actually writing.  Yes, I also do book and movie reviews on this blog, but I’m really slacking off on the book reading and I’ve got a running list of just over a hundred movies I’ve not reviewed in the last eighteen months.  Heck, I’ve got over five movies to review from this week alone!  Alas, if only there were more hours in a day and / or I were less of a procrastinator.
Before reading any further, remember I am NOT a doctor or a nutritionist.  I am only relating what I have viewed on YouTube and read over the course of my lifetime in books and magazines.  Take everything I opine on with a healthy bit of skepticism and conduct your own research.  To quote the famous Vulcan expression:  “Never trust anyone over 50!”  Me in particular…
Eat Less
I mentioned a few days ago that I believe losing weight comes down to three things.  ONE of them was to eat less.  I also mentioned I didn’t particularly believe this meant eating less calories.  Huh?  It turns out for many years we’ve been fed (pardon the pun) a line as to both calories and various food types.  It turns out that you really AREN’T what you eat.  When we eat fat, we don’t get fat and when we eat food high in cholesterol we don’t “get” high cholesterol.  It seems the body has an organ (the liver) which can make enough for you to live without eating foods with high cholesterol content.  BUT, that’s not the same thing as saying eating foods with high cholesterol will make your cholesterol rise.  From my limited reading (remember, I am NOT a doctor or a nutritionist), we don’t know if it does or not for “most” people.  We also don’t know if the bump / effect is permanent or short term and we don’t know if it (high cholesterol) causes any problems in the body.  We have evidence that folks who die from heart disease also frequently have high cholesterol, but correlation is not causation.  For all we know, the heart disease may be causing the high cholesterol, rather than the other way around.
According to one of the (many) online calculators, at 5′ 10″ and 358 pounds, my Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is:  2750 and my Daily Calorie Needs (DCN) is:  3850 calories.  The BMR is how many calories you need if you are in a coma or sleeping all day.  The DCN is how much I need for a sitting job and light physical activity (aka: a normal life).  What this says is that (on average) I will burn 110 calories per hour if I do nothing but breathe, and I need to take in 150 calories per hour if I live my “normal” life.  This will leave me at a complete wash.  I won’t gain weight.  I won’t lose weight.  As most folks normally eat during a 16 hour period (8hrs per day of sleep), that “really” breaks down to about 240 calories per hour or three meals in that time span of 1,300 calories each.  (Yes, I am rounding my numbers.)
When considering these numbers, please recall both BMR and DCN are related to height and weight.  Since my height is not going to decrease by dieting, we really only need to think about weight.  As my weight decreases, my BMR and my DCN will both also decrease.  So, as I get lighter, I will need to progressively eat less.  Surprising, the difference is not linear for either.  If I were my “ideal maximum” weight for my height (181 pounds), my BMR should be:  1678 and DCN should be:  2349 calories.  Since my ideal weight is almost exactly half my current, I would expect my BMR and DCN at my ideal weight to also be one half (i.e. BMR:  2750 / 2 = 1375 and DCN:  3850 / 2 = 1925).  The two ratios are linear (corresponding) with each other, but they are not linear with weight loss.  So, something seems out of whack for calories…
It is generally accepted you need to burn 3,500 calories to burn off one pound of body weight (per week), or 500 calories per day.  That’s not eating slightly more than two candy bars or not drinking three eight ounce glasses of average juice per day.  That should be “doable” for most people.  Instead of four bars a day, I’ll cut back to one or two and voilà, in two years (-ish) I’m skinny.
The problem seems to be that calories don’t count as much as sweetness counts.  Fat / obesity “seems” to be more related to insulin than it is to calories.  And the primary purpose of insulin is to maintain blood-sugar level within a pretty narrow band:  too low, you pass out;  too high, you get sick (think:  diabetic coma).  So, the questions are:  “What do we know about insulin?  And, how can we control it?”
And…  more to come…
Oh, yeah.  The average Vulcan lifespan (in StarTrek:TOS) is 180 to 200 years.  The actual Vulcan expression is:  “Never take the advice of anyone under 50.”  Presumably, because they haven’t lived long enough to know much.
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On This Day In:
2018 Pity The Nation (Part 2)
Day 1: Redux
2017 Good Blogs, Too
2016 My Prediction For #AmnestyDon
2015 Worth A Try
2014 I’m Feeling It
2013 May I Have A Little More, Please?
2012 Increasing Doubt
2011 You Can’t Touch This

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I come from a family where gravy is considered a beverage.
    —    Erma Bombeck
Okay, the above quote is not strictly true for my family, but it seems pretty close…  All of my immediate family have struggled with weight and the impact of that weight on our health.
If you’ve been following this blog for any length of time, you know this (dieting and health) is recurring topic for my posts as I continue to struggle with my morbid obesity.  Last year, I went on a 42 day vegetable juicing / fruit juice & vegetable blending diet.  I dropped from my all time high of 380lbs down to 311lbs.  However, like almost all of my other attempts to lose weight, the real effort is spent in keeping the weight off (not just losing it).  I had hoped to gain around a pound a month for the next five years before having to worry about losing weight again.  Unfortunately, things have not gone to plan and I have gained most of the weight back in less than one year.
In the spirit of “never say die(t)”, I am now trying again.  This time I will be trying the Alternate Day Fast (ADF) technique.  More precisely, I will trying the “modified” ADF.  In a “standard” ADF, you alternate between days you eat and days you fast.  The “fast” day is not a “true” fast day as I’ve always understood it.  Basically, females are allowed 500 calories and males are allowed 700 calories on your Fast days.  On the “Feast” Days, you can eat anything you want and as much as you want.  Obviously, you should approach this with some reason, but as near as I can tell, “common sense” is not a requirement.  If you lack it (common sense), you will simply slow the process of weight loss, but you still will not stop / end it.
In the modified ADF (MADF), I will be trying to stick to either a single large salad in the evening (between 4pm and 6pm), or a series of three smaller “meals” during a 8 hour window (typically between 10am and 6pm).  Inside and outside of the window, I can have as much water, coffee and tea as I want.  I will NOT, however, be counting calories on either day.  The coffee and tea are black (with no cream), but that is not a requirement.  If, some day, I want cream, I will have it.  Basically, I am severely reducing calories on alternating days and eating normally on alternating days.
On a typical juicing fast I would normally lose about 18 to 20 pounds in my first ten days of the fast.  Most of this would be water weight and stomach content.  I estimate between seven and ten pounds minimum (and probably closer to 15lbs).  In this case my “real” loss would be the difference – between five and ten pounds.  To date (today is ADF:9-5), I have lost about eight(8) pounds.  This is actual “loss”, because I am not emptying my stomach and I am, in fact, maintaining my stomach contents (by eating normally every other day).  It is possible the loss could still be mostly water, but I will not be able to determine that for at least a few more days (if not weeks).  I do note that my hands and feet no longer feel swollen in the mornings when I get out of bed.
My goal for this “exercise” (lifestyle change) is to consistently lose 1.5 to 2 pounds per week for at least the next five months.  5months X 4weeks X 2pounds = 40 pounds of weight loss by the middle of June.  After that, I will evaluate whether I need to be stricter / looser or whatever…  This is a completely arbitrary “deadline” and I anticipate I’ll know if the MADF is working or not within the next 30 days.  You may have noticed in the last paragraph I said I’ve lost 8lbs in this first week.  I am expecting this will have been mostly water loss weight, but in any case, I am well over my goal for the week.  This means I will need to have more than my normal amount of calories tomorrow (during my “feast” day).  Losing weight too quickly risks the body slipping into “famine” mode and lowering my Basil Metabolic Rate (BMR) which will only make future losses more difficult.
Starting information:  Age – 63;  weight:  355lbs on Day 1;  366lbs on Day 2;  waist size:  55.5″ at my belly-button.  My “ideal” maximum weight for my height:  181lbs.  My healthy waist size s/b:  35-36″ at my belly-button.
Based on my height and weight, my “Inactive BMR” is:  2,434 calories per day;  my “Lite Activity BMR” is:  3,347 calories per day.  Generally, we all need to reduce calories 3,500 to lose 1 pound per week.  So, if I have less than 1,000 calories on my fast days and 3,347 on my feast days, I should lose between 1 and 3 pounds each week.  Easy, peasy…
Additional info:  During my last juice fast I struggled to get a consistent reading on my scale.  It was during the summer, so I would be in t-shirt, shorts and barefoot for my morning weigh-in.  I tried to stand a specific way to get a consistent reading, but it was difficult because I had to balance on the scale to do so.  It is now winter and my house is too cold to wander around in shorts and barefoot, so I get up and get dressed now.  This introduces another set of uncontrolled / un-recorded variables: different tops (sweat shirts), different shoes, and different pants.  Since I am too lazy to get dressed just to weigh myself in the morning and then change to what I will really wear that day, I will be letting it all sort itself out in the wash.  More precisely, I’m going to let it even itself out over time.  Although I am weighing myself every day, the main factor I will use for judging success is the weight every eighth day.  Up, down or no change.
I will be recording my weight two ways:  1) HIGH – standing with my knees slightly bent, feet flat but with my weight on my toes;  and,  2) LOW – standing with knees straight (but not locked), feet flat but with my weight on my heels.  I have noted my scale can show a variance of 12lbs between these two methods.  In future posts, I will be stating my “HIGH” weight.  On my daily account of “Sweat Equity” (see tab at top of the page), I will list both and also other specific data I track (walks, sleep, feelings, etc.)
So, I will not be counting calories and I will not be on any strict exercise regimen.  I do walk my dog each morning for 30-60 minutes, but it is at a leisurely pace so she can smell the outside world.  We are not walking for a land speed record.  I will be going to the gym because I like to.  This means a couple of times per week with no set day or duration.  I will (generally) not post every day about this (MADF) process.  I will try to post often, though.  I am learning a lot about eating, fasting, exercise and a host of other topics which I am finding interesting and I plan to use this forum to record my observations (LOL – what else is new?).  This is for my benefit more than for any of my readers.  A personal journal, as it were…
Just a last comment on “title of post” nomenclature:  “ADF: Day 9:5” will tell you (me) this post is about the diet (“ADF”).  It will normally be my second post of the day.  If you are not interested, have a nice day and come back soon.  If you are interested in my notes / thoughts, “Day #:#” indicates the total number of days and (at least for now) the second number indicates a “fast” day (odd number) or a “feast” day (even number).  That will let you know if I’m writing while hungry or full (LOL).
Please feel free to leave any questions below in the comments.  I will try to respond to all comments, and who knows, your question may end up the basis for a future post.
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On This Day In:
2018 #DumbDonald: Start With Hearing What You Don’t Want Said
2017 The Press Is NOT The Enemy
2016 It Ain’t Easy
(Leap Year 29th) Or Try To, Anyway…
(Leap Year 29th) Circles Within Circles
2015 A Series Of Funerals
2014 And Your Point Is?
2013 Infinitely Care
2012 In My Room
(Leap Year 29th) Stingray – TV Series Review  (This is my most popular post since starting my blog – hands down!  It still draws hits almost every week.  The hits seem to come mostly from Central Europe.  I guess the show must be in syndication there.)
(Leap Year 29th) A Single Thread
2011 Lyrical Mixture
Teaching = Translating

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