Life in a small town

Fasting … another progress report …

“The Wind Of Liudao”, Jia Peng Fang, from the album “Faraway”, (2002)

flowing brook animatedSo, fasting, how are things going? I seem to be still stuck at some kind of plateau with my weight holding steady at approximately 230 pounds. As mentioned, that is a long way (on the good side of the scale) from 268 pounds but also a long way from my arbitrary weight target of 200 pounds.

I say arbitrary because while I have some doubts about ever getting back to my combat weight of 180 pounds where I was in my early 20’s, I don’t think 200 pounds is unreasonable for a  65 year old, 6 foot male of medium build in reasonable physical shape.

I am currently still using the weekends, Saturday, Sunday and Monday, as eating days and eating everything I like or want to eat, although I must admit that I just don’t feel like eating anything near as much as I once ate “normally”. I am probably eating about half the calories I was eating 7 months ago and not missing anything.

Guide to FastingI had intended to switch to total fast during the busy time of the week, on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday until suppertime on Friday but I have been consistently NOT feeling like doing that when suppertime roles around.

I could call this a failure of self discipline or I could just say “What the hey, that’s how things role right now”. I think I prefer “What the hey …”.

Anyway, Joe’s Fasting Chronicles …  (part 7?). I just recently (26th of July) had my 65 year old, 10,000 mile, warranty check up with my Doc in order to establish a health baseline going forward. I have been feeling great and as far as I could tell I was and am healthy but I wanted to get a full panel of lab tests to verify that the deep blood work substantiated how I was feeling.

I arrived at the appointment expecting to have to do a hard sell on my “new” fasting lifestyle and the health benefits because generally speaking the medical profession, by and large, in Alberta, Canada tend to feel that they better stick to the guidelines currently established by the medical associations and by the teaching universities, and in a kind of “ME TOO” way, by the Provincial Department of Health.

I was completely and pleasantly surprised to be told that not only was my Doc quite OK with my fasting regime but that he had been doing it himself for several months now and had lost 45 pounds, and was using the method to treat some of his diabetic patients for their Type II Diabetes.

Obesity CodeSo instead of a difficult sales job we spent the better part of 45 minutes exchanging observations, and titles of articles and books and recipes and just generally having a good chinwag, and then spent about ten minutes taking my vitals and lining up a full panel of lab tests. Just the best doctor’s appointment I can ever remember having and no problems at all.

So how did my tests turn out? First, blood sugars are now routinely testing and holding at 5.0 to 6.5 international. Dawn values are often in the 7’s but drop rapidly over the first two or three hours of the day.  The conversion factor is 18 for those who want to see that in American units , eg. 7×18=126, at least that is how I think it converts, and I am told that that is normal.

My lab results show Blood Insulin level as 40.8 pmo/L and the reference range is <120.0 pmo/L. That is excellent. Negative urine glucose, urine keytones +1 and the lab notes that as high but it is what I am targeting to be in moderate keytosis. Protein, nitrite, and leukocytes all negative, hemoglobin A1C was 6.3 (should be less than 7.0) and Glucose fasting 6.4 which is slightly high but consistent with what I have been getting for dawn values with my meter daily.

So everything is looking very good and trending in the right direction. I have another appointment lined up in a few days to go over the results and get my Doc’s advice but I think we will be just agreeing that this is very good and I want to get come contacts regarding grass fed beef and where to get it around here. I am “officially” officially declaring my Type II diabetes “cured” for sure now.  Resting blood pressure is around 110/60 these days and weight is 230 Lbs. (or about 100 Kg). I am in keytosis, testing using “Ketostix”, and I truly feel great.

If you haven’t read my previous posts on this topic here, and  here, and hereand here, and here, and here, and here, then let it be known that when I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes 7 years ago I was 270 Lbs., blood sugars were in the high teens, and blood pressure was in the 140 over 90 range. I felt like crap!  In January of this year I was testing blood sugars of 16.0 to 17.0 while taking 4 Metformin and a Gliclazide daily. We were talking about starting on Insulin injections.

What else have I found in addition to getting these great results in my official lab blood tests?

Well there is this website , Confronting The Confusing World Of Nutrition, another WordPress blog site where I have found just about every book ever written about my current lifestyle choices.

This has become my go-to site for all things diet and health in terms of finding resources and information.

I agree with this blogger, that I still feel that were you to choose only one, my personal favorite is The Obesity Code written by Canadian Nephrologist Dr. Jason Fung.

As the proprietor of Intensive Dietary Management in Toronto, Dr. Fung is a clinician that has real-world experience and an uncanny talent for cutting through the BS.

He “tells it like it is” in an entertaining way that makes it easy for non-scientific minded laymen to really grasp an understanding. This book is perfect for sharing and provides an excellent introduction to the LCHF/Ketogenic lifestyle.

The other book I like is : Principia Ketogenica: Low Carbohydrate And Ketogenic Diets – Compendium Of Science Literature On The Benefits by A Simmonds. This book contains 319 pages of important science and studies related to low-carb, high-fat diets, with hundreds of research papers and scholarly journal articles from over the past century, summarized and fully referenced.

Though available in hardcover, the e-book provides active links to pertinent studies and abstracts. There are no recipes, testimonials, or popular articles.

This book is current up to 2014, perhaps the greatest collection of relevant nutrition science available to date.

The Principia is available as a Kindle eBook for a couple of bucks and truly worth the price.

Cheers

Joe

So, to the “Medical Establishment” and “Professional” Nutritionists everywhere … Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.

 

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Life in a small town

Fasting and Type II Diabetes …

Twilight And Shadow”, Howard Shore, from “Lord Of The Rings

flowing brook animatedSo, fasting, how are things going? I seem to have hit some kind of plateau, where I am loosing inches and getting “flappy” but with my weight holding steady at approximately 230 pounds.

That is a long way (on the good side of the scale) from 268 pounds but also a long way from my arbitrary weight target of 200 pounds.

180 pounds

This is what 180 pounds combat weight looks like, (FN C2 LMG foreground, FN C1 assault rifle, background)

I say arbitrary because while I have a lot of doubts about ever getting back to my combat weight of 180 pounds where I was in my early 20’s, I don’t think 200 pounds is unreasonable for a  65 year old, 6 foot male of medium build in reasonable physical shape.

Obesity CodeUp until 8 days ago I was following a 1 meal a day regimen with a monthly 4 day total fast, and allowing myself a 4 hour window between 6 and 10 PM for eating and snacking.

Last Saturday, following advice offered by fellow “fasters” on the Obesity Code support group, which is a Facebook chat group for folks following Jason Fung’s “Intensive Dietary Management” recommendations, I switched things up to encourage my body to get back into weight loss mode.

Guide to FastingI am currently using the weekends, Saturday, Sunday and Monday, as feast days and eating everything I like or want to eat. Then I switch to total fast during the busy time of the week, on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday until suppertime on Friday.

It’s way easier to fast when you are busy at work than on a weekend when all you do is think about what you are going to eat when you stop fasting.

Blood sugars are now testing and holding at 5.0 to 6.5 international (the conversion factor is 18 for those who want to see that in American units , eg. 7×18=126, at least that is how I think it converts) and I think that is normal.

I am officially declaring my Type II diabetes “cured”.  Resting blood pressure is around 110/60 these days and weight is 230 Lbs. (or about 100 Kg). I am in keytosis, testing using “Ketostix”, and I feel great.

If you haven’t read my previous posts on this topic here, and here , and here, and here, and here, and here, then let it be known that when I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes 7 years ago I was 270 Lbs., blood sugars were in the high teens, and blood pressure was in the 140 over 90 range. I felt like crap! 

In January of this year I was testing blood sugars of 16.0 to 17.0 while taking 4 Metformin and a Gliclazide daily. We were talking about starting on Insulin injections. Today, Happy Father’s Day 2017, blood sugar 5.5, weight 230, BP 112 over 65, and I just threw all my Atkins stuff from back in 2002 in the dumpster.

Scrambled eggs, hash browns and ham for breakfast, Avocado with sour cream and Macadamia nuts for lunch, and Fried Pickerel and green salad with Almond flour baking powder biscuits for supper tonight. Weekends are great when you start to eat only on weekends.

Cheers

Joe

Fat GuyIn January 2017 I looked like the 2nd guy from left (May 2011), a long long way from the lean mean machine of the 70’s (at top)

 

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Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow …

“And all our yesterdays have lighted fools … ”

ゆりかごの歌”  William W. Spearman IV, from the album “Beautiful Japanese Songs” (2006)

Obedience is an essential aspect, a virtue, a character trait intimately associated with Christ’s life on earth. It is essential in any attempt to follow Him and to conform one’s will to God’s.

Fasting and praying are both difficult when distracted by the daily vicissitudes of illness. Having had the most vicious cold with accompanying lung ripping cough it has been difficult to continue my fast with dedication.

As Jason Fung has mentioned in his blog, just take a few days off from fasting to get well, don’t add unnecessary stress when you are fully engaged in getting well.

Being obedient to the mission goals – restrained eating – 1 meal a day, pushing fluids, water, broth, is problematic and requires real effort of will.

Obedience … the voluntary surrender of one’s free will to accomplishment of the goal. Who would have thought that obedience would be even more difficult to embrace than humility.

I feel that we are on a mission against great powers to push through (the mud and the blood) to the green fields beyond (my grandfather would have recognized the reference).

The goal of health, weight loss, low insulin levels, low blood pressure and on top of that “spiritual peace and tranquility” seem far away and unattainable at times, especially when the trials of this world intrude upon one’s determination to persist.

Hobbes’ Leviathan – life as “nasty, brutish, and short” mid nineteenth century.

It does seem passing strange that ill-health, disease, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, muddy thinking and fuzziness, lack of energy, lack of conviction and certainty, all seem to directly benefit the higher authorities who have assumed nominal responsibility for looking after our well-being.

Just think for a minute, if we all actually got healthy they would all be out of work. The legions of health related government service silos and the big pharma and big food multinational agri-conglomerates, the whole GMO crowd, would all be in dire financial straights, wouldn’t they?  Who was it who said “follow the money”?

In the real world of every day …  blood sugar hovering around 7.0 – best since I was diagnosed 8 years ago, weight down to 238 lbs. best in 8 years. BP down to 115/65 also good, and off all my medications for blood pressure and diabetes. This is all good, right? Why do I feel so down then?

St. Paul’s letter to the Ephesians seems to speak to this experience – this whole struggle is much larger than just dieting … Ephesians 6 … Douay-Rheims Bible … attempting to return to an earlier order that was not about breaking down people into resources to be used and used up …

*****

Children and Parents

1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is just. 2 Honour thy father and thy mother, which is the first commandment with a promise: 3 That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest be long lived upon earth. 4 And you, fathers, provoke not your children to anger; but bring them up in the discipline and correction of the Lord.

“The Wind Of Liudao”, Jia Peng Fang, from the album “Faraway”, (2002)

Slaves and Masters

5 Servants, be obedient to them that are your lords according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in the simplicity of your heart, as to Christ: 6 Not serving to the eye, as it were pleasing men, but, as the servants of Christ doing the will of God from the heart, 7 With a good will serving, as to the Lord, and not to men.

8 Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man shall do, the same shall he receive from the Lord, whether he be bond, or free. 9 And you, masters, do the same things to them, forbearing threatenings, knowing that the Lord both of them and you is in heaven; and there is no respect of persons with him.

The Full Armor of God

10 Finally, brethren, be strengthened in the Lord, and in the might of his power. 11 Put you on the armour of God, that you may be able to stand against the deceits of the devil. 12 For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood; but against principalities and power, against the rulers of the world of this darkness, against the spirits of wickedness in the high places.

13 Therefore take unto you the armour of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and to stand in all things perfect. 14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of justice, 15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace: 16  In all things taking the shield of faith, wherewith you may be able to extinguish all the fiery darts of the most wicked one. 17 And take unto you the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit (which is the word of God).

Pray Continually

18 By all prayer and supplication praying at all times in the spirit; and in the same watching with all instance and supplication for all the saints: 19 And for me, that speech may be given me, that I may open my mouth with confidence, to make known the mystery of the gospel. 20 For which I am an ambassador in a chain, so that therein I may be bold to speak according as I ought.

Final Greetings

21 But that you also may know the things that concern me, and what I am doing, Tychicus, my dearest brother and faithful minister in the Lord, will make known to you all things: 22 Whom I have sent to you for this same purpose, that you may know the things concerning us, and that he may comfort your hearts. 23 Peace be to the brethren and charity with faith, from God the Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ. 24 Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in incorruption. Amen.

*****

Dieting as an exercise in scriptural meditation … “the spirits of wickedness in the high places” is that just too pretentious? I actually don’t think so … wickedness in high places … affecting every aspect of every day in every way …

Meanwhile, in the real world of every day …  blood sugar hovering around 7.0 – best since I was diagnosed 8 years ago. Weight down to 238 lbs. best in 8 years. BP down to 115/65 also good. Off all my meds, just taking vitamins, really, except for the cold we are struggling with we are feeling the best we have in years. Things are actually looking pretty good when we stay focused on the minutiae of the day.

Cheers

Joe

and never take yourself too seriously …

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Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

Year-End, Prayer, and Fasting … Lent

Yashi No Mi (Ohnaka), Jean-Pierre Rampal, from the album “Rampal: Japanese Folk Melodies”, (1978)

Well, my Year End accounting efforts are bearing much fruit. For the first time in 8 years I am up to date and almost done on time.

This will be a first ever to be down to two months worth of accounting = about 2 weeks worth of work, and I am on track to get everything out to the accountants by mid April. WooHoo!

The fasting is progressing nicely alternating between total fasting for a week and 1 meal a day for a week. Have stopped all meds both for diabetes and blood pressure and the numbers continue to improve. Weight continues to drop.

All good on that front except that I wonder in passing if my pride at how well I am doing negates the spiritual benefits of atonement and and mortification.

Pride is such an insidious vice, informing almost every thought of every day.

A prayer for Lent – taken from my Carmelite meditation book “Divine Intimacy””

*****

“O God of my soul, what am I in Your presence! Have my acts ever been free from faults — my words, my will? But You, O Lord, are good and Your right hand is merciful.

O Physician of my soul, show me the fruits of my avowal. I confess because the admission of my miseries awakens my heart and keeps it from slumber; but even while saying I am incapable of doing good, my soul awakes again in the love of Your mercy and the sweetness of Your grace, by which every sick soul feels strong and becomes aware of its weakness.”

“I shall love You, O Lord, and return thanks to You and exalt Your Name because you have pardoned so many of my guilty acts.  If my sins have melted away like ice, it is the work of Your grace and mercy. All the evil I have not committed was likewise the work of Your grace. Was there any sin I could not have committed, I who have loved evil with so light a heart? I confess that all my sins have been forgiven, both those that I committed as well as those that, with Your help, I did not commit.” (St. Augustine)

O my God, You who by one single act of Your will created light — and light was made — speak again Your all-powerful creative word: fiat lux, and light will be created in my soul; and in Your light I shall be able to see myself as I really am in Your sight.

But light is not enough for me who am so weak and cowardly; I need strength, O Lord; I need a strong, resolute will to hate evil in all forms, to have a horror of my self-love, my pride, my sloth, to renew and strengthen my resolution to overcome myself for love of You.

Yes, Lord, with Your help I wish to conquer myself, not for the vain satisfaction of thinking that I am doing better, but solely to give You pleasure, to avoid even the smallest thing that displeases You.

O my God, infinite Perfection envelop and penetrate my soul with the reflection of Your holiness, and just as the sun illumines, purifies and makes the earth fruitful with its rays, illumine, purify, and sanctify my whole being.

Teach me to look at myself with Your eyes, to know myself as You know me, to consider my miseries in the light of Your infinite perfections, to open my soul to Your purifying, sanctifying light.”

*****

Cheers

Joe

Always remember, “be charitable in your judgements, never take yourself too seriously” and of course “Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.”

Sometimes when I post, I look at my sig and wish that I’d follow my own damned advice.

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Life in a small town

Fasting, Year End, This and That …

Shakuhachi Flute Music”, from the album “Chinese and Japanese Koto Harp and Shakuhachi Flute” (2008)

001-a-tumblr_ofo3pky5rz1upvbufo1_540Peaceful mind, peaceful body, fasting, fasting is proving to be an interesting and surprisingly fulfilling experience. In my last post on fasting I mentioned completing a 7 day 24 hour intermittent fast session, supper only.

Then I did a 7 day total fast, water and broth only. Then a 14 day 24 hour intermittent fast eating only supper. I am now in day 4 of another total fast, water and broth only and am intending to see if I can go 14 days without problems.

I am now down 14 pounds, blood sugar is down to 8 MMol/L from 16 or 17, BP is 120 over 65, ketone bodies are at 16 MMol/L. Energy high, brain is sharp, and sleeping well.

I continue to take my vitamins and mineral supplements but I have stopped all diabetes medications (Metformin and Gliclazide).

DP130155, 2/7/06, 11:18 AM, 16C, 6856x8852 (180+693), 100%, Rona Copywork, 1/30 s, R93.8, G57.6, B56.4 Working Title/Artist: The Great Wave at Kanagawa (from a Series of Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji)Department: Asian ArtCulture/Period/Location: HB/TOA Date Code: 10Working Date: 1831-33 photography by mma, Digital File DP130155.tif retouched by film and media (jnc) 8_17_11

Working Title/Artist: The Great Wave at Kanagawa (from a Series of Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji) Department: Asian ArtCulture /Period/Location: HB/TOA Date Code: 10Working Date: 1831-33 photography by mma, Digital File DP130155.tif retouched by film and media (jnc) 8_17_11

My blood sugars are much better fasting and not taking meds than they were when I was eating normally and taking meds.

I suspect that over time they will in fact reach “normal” levels in the 4 to 5 range as my body becomes less and less insulin resistant. 

This second fast event surprised me because I was expecting day 2 to be another death march to the refrigerator, like the first fast, as my body resisted the shift to fasting. Not so!

It seems it remembered that it would not die from lack of food (at least not immediately) and shifted smoothly into ketosis and using up fat stores of my own body.

I did not experience any of the difficulties I had with the first 7 day fast. I am looking forward to seeing how things go as I push this out to the 14 day mark.

As I mentioned in my first post on fasting I began fasting as part of a spiritual path much recommended in all the world faiths throughout history. In the Christian tradition, fasting and prayer are often methods of cleansing and renewing the soul.

000-st-john-of-the-crossSymbolically, believers empty their souls so that they may be ready to receive God. Fasting is about self-denial, mortification, sacrifice, atonement and also about reaching for a focused spiritual state where one can better  commune with God and hear his voice.

For millions of people, regular fasting is a commonplace part of life and has been a part of spiritual practice for thousands of years. In ancient times, before we discovered agriculture about 10,000 years ago, fasting was the natural way of life.

I am doing daily meditations on St. John of The Cross’ “The Way Of Nothing“. I am using a book “Divine Intimacy”, by Fr. Gabriel of Saint Mary Magdalene, O.C.D. pp. 674.  Copyright 1953 Monastero S. Guiseppe – Carmelitane Scalze, 2014 edition

It has been hard going because I am so attached to everything in this world. In fact the saint himself tells us that it is impossible to become completely detached from this world but we should be striving for detachment anyway.

“To reach satisfaction in everything, desire satisfaction in nothing.
To come to possession of everything, desire the possession of nothing.
To arrive at being all, desire to be nothing.
To come to the knowledge of everything, desire the knowledge of nothing.”
Ascent of Mount Carmel, Book One, Chapter 13″

“Àki”, Rodrigo Rodriguez, from the album “Inner Thoughts” (2006)

This fasting exercise has given me my first tangible breakthrough to understanding on this path. The intimate understanding that food is not nearly as important as I believed, and that all of my interest in food, all of my attachment to food is nothing but a pursuit of pleasure.

Taste, satiety, social and communal experiences, praise for a good meal cooked and presented, self esteem about the food and my efforts and the experiences surrounding the creation of a “‘special meal” are all about worship of self.

I have discovered that not only is food not as important as I believed but I don’t actually need very much to keep going, and I am much sharper and more at peace when I am fasting. Wow, who knew?  This is the first material evidence that perhaps detachment is a lot more reachable than I first believed.

Meanwhile, back in the world, I have been busy as hell working on year end and for the first time ever I am caught up and current and only have a few more days work finishing everything up. On target to get this out to the accountants by end of March. Then I can blame them instead of making excuses why I am not done yet.

Idiots HappenAlso spending time these days arguing and emailing with one vendor about a bill from 2015 for $14,000.00 which they insist I did not pay and I insist that I did. Sigh! Not only do I have to do my own accounting but in the case of this vendor I have to do theirs as well.

If this particular vendor was not in my life I would have no problems, but we are joined at the navel since they are my POS and Management software provider. Oh well, into each life and so on …

In passing I include part of something which a contact sent to me on email.

A VERY BIG NUMBER

 If I give you $1 billion and you stand on a street corner handing out $1 per
second, twenty four hours a day, seven days a week, you would still not have
handed out $1 billion after 31 years!! 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, left, and Alberta Premier Rachel Notley chat prior to a roundtable meeting with oil and gas producers in Calgary, Alberta, on Thursday, Feb. 4, 2016. (Larry MacDougal/CP)

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, left, and Alberta Premier Rachel Notley chat prior to a roundtable meeting with oil and gas producers in Calgary, Alberta, on Thursday, Feb. 4, 2016. (Larry MacDougal/CP)

Now read on.
A VERY BIG NUMBER 

This is too true to be funny. The next time you hear a politician use the word ‘billion’ in a casual manner, think about whether you want the ‘politicians’ spending YOUR tax money. 

A billion is a difficult number to comprehend, but one advertising agency did a good job of putting that figure into some perspective in one of its releases. 

  • A billion seconds ago it was 1959. 
  • A billion minutes ago Jesus was alive. 
  • A billion hours ago our ancestors were living in the Stone Age. 
  • A billion days ago no-one walked on the earth on two feet. 
  • A billion Dollars ago was only 13 hours and 12 minutes, at the rate our present government is spending it. 

Stamp Duty
Tobacco Tax
Corporate Income Tax
Income Tax
Council & Municipal Tax
Unemployment Tax
Fishing License and Dog License Tax
Petrol/Diesel Tax
Inheritance Tax (tax on top of tax)
Alcohol Tax
G.S.T.  and  H.S.T.
Property Tax
Service Charge taxes
Social Security Tax
Vehicle Licence / Registration Tax
Vehicle Sales Tax
Workers Compensation Tax
And now Carbon Dioxide Tax 

STILL THINK THIS IS FUNNY? 

Not one of these taxes existed 60 years ago and our nation was one of the most prosperous in the world.  We had absolutely no national debt.
We had the largest middle class in the world. A criminal’s life was uncomfortable. Immigrants actually expected to work when they got here.
What  on earth Happened? 

I hope this goes around CANADA and beyond 1 billion times!

Cheers

Joe

coptic-desertAlways remember, “be charitable in your judgements, never take yourself too seriously” and of course “Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.”

Sometimes when I post, I look at my sig and wish that I’d follow my own damned advice.

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Life in a small town

Fasting … Part Two …

“En Priere”, Bill Douglas, from the album “Kaleidoscope”, (1993)

001-a-fung-5x7-webWell, the Jason Fung diet effort continues. I started on January 17th and immediately proceeded to the 24 hour fast, that is, only eating supper every 24 hours.

I watched my blood sugar start coming down, my energy picked up and I quickly moved into ketosis.  By day 6, I had decided to go to a complete fast, no solid meals, just lots of water, coffee, and chicken and beef broth. After 7 days of liquid only fasting I decided to break the fast and go back to eating supper every day.

At that point I had been fasting for a total of 13 days counting both the 24 hour fasts and the 7 day total fast. I was in heavy ketosis, with ketone bodies at 16 mmol/l, my blood sugar and come down as far as 8 mmol/l, I had dropped 6 pounds, I had stopped all diabetes medications and I felt good.

The only hard part was day 2 during which I was sorely tempted to just abandon it all. I must have visited the fridge at least 25 times that day and still managed to resist temptation.  Anyway, yesterday I started with three small snacks spaced over the day and finished up with a regular supper of steak, scalloped potatoes and string peas.

This morning I find my blood sugar has shot up to 16.8, which on thinking about it is not really a surprise since it is always higher in the morning. I am still in moderate ketosis and I am no longer taking any meds for diabetes.

Yes, I ate a bunch of carbs last night for supper and they are simply the worst for boosting blood sugar. So we will check every four hours and see how the sugars come down today and how I feel going forward.

I didn’t gain any weight but it is definitely back to the no carbs, one high fat high protein meal and the rest broth and coffee and lots of water. I am thinking that I will repeat the cycle I just went through with 6 24 hour fasts followed by 7 consecutive fast days and see where we are then.

So here we go again, and I hope things are easier on day two this time, but it will probably not be easier since I will be going through the same process again. I will keep posting as things develop.

Cheers

Joe

001-the-long-defeatYou know Frodo, hobbits are really not designed for fasting. We haven’t had our Elevenses or Tea in weeks,  and I am getting really sick of waybread …

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Life in a small town, The Inner Struggle

Matthew 4:2 … on fasting …

“Aki”, Rodrigo Rodriguez, from the album “Inner thoughts”, (2006)

001-jesus-in-the-wilderness

Jesus In The Wilderness

Matthew 4:2 states: “Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. After fasting for forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.”

In the Christian tradition, fasting and prayer are often methods of cleansing and renewing the soul. Symbolically, believers empty their souls so that they may be ready to receive God.

Fasting is about self-denial, mortification, sacrifice, atonement and also about reaching for a focused spiritual state where one can better  commune with God and hear his voice.

001-a-hongyi2By fasting, you put your mind and body under submission to the will of the Holy Spirit, humble your soul before the presence of God, and prepare yourself to hear the voice of God.

For millions of people, regular fasting is a commonplace part of life and has been a part of spiritual practice for thousands of years. In ancient times, before we discovered agriculture about 10,000 years ago, fasting was the natural way of life.

001-a-netsilik-inuit-camp-on-the-ice-gjoa-haven-king-william-island-nwt

Netsilik Inuit Camp on Ice near Gjoa Haven, King William Island, N.W.T.

For our native people here in Canada it was common up until the early 20th century as witness the near starvation catastrophe of the Netsilik Inuit  which prompted the Canadian Government to become more involved in the lives of the Netsilik.

With no way to preserve food and no agricultural products to stockpile our ancestors routinely experienced both feast and famine.

When game was scarce, seasons changed, or the pickings were slim, or the herds changed their traditional routes, the hunter-gatherers did without until the hunters could find the game.

Eating 3 or 4 or 5 or 6  times a day was an unheard of fantasy. So fasting is a time honoured traditional practice dating back thousands of years.

Christians follow various fasts on 180 to 200 days of the year. Buddhists are known to abstain from eating after noon, fasting until the next morning.

001-a-nepalese_temple_maha_shivaratri-hindu-fast

Nepalese Temple Maha Shivaratri Fast

Hinduism embraces fasting in the belief that our sins lessen as the body suffers. It is seen as a method of cultivating control over desires and guiding the mind towards peace. Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset during the holy month of Ramadan.

We Catholics fast at various times and for various reasons. A few weeks ago I started what I now know as an “intermittent” fast, that is fasting from supper to supper three times a week. Also called a 24 hour fast, this fast is/was undertaken as part of adopting the recommended practices and norms of the “Flame of Love” movement.

I expected the effort to be fraught with difficulty and discomfort, which I actually thought was the intended path, that is, mortification for reparation. The result was not at all what I expected.

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Clear Mind Like A Clear Spring

Were I not so firmly rooted in the modern medical paradigm I might have felt I was breaking through to a new spiritual plane of lucid clarity and freedom from physical distress.

I have been type 2 diabetic for almost 8 years now. It has been controlled by a combination of Metformin and diet.  I had accepted the modern medical view that Type 2 Diabetes was incurable, and that the best I could hope for was to control blood sugar levels using diet, drugs, and eventually insulin.

The inevitable future included declining health, assorted nasty complications and an early death. The last few months my sugars have been steadily rising, recently as high as 16.5 mmol/l where normal is around 5.0 mmol/l. Obviously the drugs were no longer working and I was discussing with medical folks the possibility  of starting to use insulin.

And then, for religious reasons as mentioned above, I started to fast.  I was a little surprised to notice that on fasting days my sugars declined back down to the 14.0 mmol/l range. Now, that’s interesting, I thought.

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Dr. Jason Fung

Well, never one to shy away from going counter-culture I considered that if I had this result doing intermittent fasting (supper only) three days a week, maybe doing it every day would have a larger affect on my blood sugar. So that is what I did.

For six days I did daily 24 hour fasts eating only supper. And my blood sugar came down a couple of more numbers to 12.0 mmol/l. And I felt better over all, more energy, less appetite, clearer head, better sleep.

This was all good! And then I stepped on the scale and discovered  I had lost eight pounds. Click!  Something good is going on here and I like where this is going.

You can figure where this is going right? Yup … if 24 hour fasting gives me this much of a good result let’s see where a continuous fast goes. So the next day I just didn’t eat supper.

001-a-obesity-code-coverHas my usual coffees all day, added coconut oil to a couple of them, tasted good. Had some beef broth with a pat of butter added to pump up the flavour.  Drank a lot of water!

My bottle is the 1 litre size and I was drinking three or four of those a day. and I decided I had better start researching what I was trying before I got myself in trouble. Almost immediately I found Dr. Jason Fung.

Wow!  I downloaded his books from Amazon onto my iPad.  Immediately spent several days speed reading through them. Yea, I’m a speed reader.

I guess I read about 7 or 8 hundred words a minute. I took a speed reading course as a teen but the course never even came close to catching up to the speed I was already reading at when I started the course. Mom was pissed she wasted money on the course.

So as of today I have been on a total fast except for beverages and broth for four days. I have stopped all my Metformin, no diabetic medications at all.

001-a-complete-guide-to-fasting-cover2-1My waking blood sugars are down to 11.0 mmol/l  dropping to 9.0 mmol/l as the day goes on, and I am testing every two or three hours.

Testing urine with keto sticks and I am in moderate ketosis. I have dropped twelve pounds. I am assuming this is mostly water since this is early innings in this experiment but so far so good.

I experienced mild discomfort on day two of the total fast, feeling — I guess “hollow” best describes the feeling and kind of agitated and restless, and I visited the fridge about twenty times that day but always managed to turn away and stick to it.

Now I am almost done day four and feeling great, no hunger, no discomfort, feeling sharp with lots of energy!  I love this.

I will keep y’all posted as things progress. I wonder how long I can go. To get back to my fit combat weight from my twenties I have to lose another 60 pounds. How long can I go?

Cheers

Joe

001-a-jigging-for-lake-trout D’ya want a snack?

 

 

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