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Fasting on Fat (Paleohacks) vs Completely Fasted State (LeanGains)

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created December 31, 2012 at 4:35 PM

I came from the LeanGains camp where you probably shouldn't be consuming anything above 10 or 15 calories during your fasting period. I've noticed a lot of people talk about using coffee, or coffee with MCT oil or butter, until they "break" their fast at 12 or 2 or whenever they do it. To me this seems contradictory since I was under the impression you lose some of the benefits of fasting by consuming calories and giving your body any of that energy. Whether it has to do with increasing your insulin sensitivity, burning fat, or whatever.

Can someone shed some light on this? Does fasting on fat still have a lot of the same benefits? Which ones are negated by consuming these calories?

Ee6932fe54ad68039a8d5f7a8caa0468

(2668)

on January 01, 2013
at 02:59 AM

well, wait a sec... it's not a moot point at all. there's an actual answer here, and i'd be curios to hear from someone who really knows the science. the jaminets recommend 'ketogenic' fasting, and i do it at least once a week, and have no interest in more fat loss.

705e66484ed64fe8e188123de398413e

(1013)

on January 01, 2013
at 12:40 AM

I think it's a moot point: the "Fasting on Fat" goal is almost always fat loss and combined with a lower calorie than maintenance diet.

705e66484ed64fe8e188123de398413e

(1013)

on January 01, 2013
at 12:37 AM

Agree with Foreveryoung - it's a confusion in terms. Generally you can add "modified" before "fast" when thinking of the fat eating camp. These terms could also apply to a protein only fast or even a protein free fast

Ee6932fe54ad68039a8d5f7a8caa0468

(2668)

on December 31, 2012
at 06:57 PM

i'm not an expert on this, or even close. my understanding, though, is that an insulin response will largely stop autophagy (which basically occurse continuously, at some level), giving fat a free pass to an extent.

D05f3050dc3d973b8b81a876202fa99a

(1533)

on December 31, 2012
at 06:56 PM

This makes a little more sense to me. Particularly the part about it really just being the first meal of the day made up only of fat.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on December 31, 2012
at 06:20 PM

Why will the fat not interfere with autophagy? It's calories. Exogenous calories are used for energy, inhibiting you from using your own endogenous calorie stores (adipose tissue).

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on December 31, 2012
at 06:18 PM

Well, if we're talking semantics, it seems that the fat eating camp takes the word fasting to mean simply "not spiking insulin" and the other camp takes the word fasting as what it is traditionally meant- "not taking in calories."

D05f3050dc3d973b8b81a876202fa99a

(1533)

on December 31, 2012
at 05:02 PM

Right. I've read a lot of Brad Pilon's work and most of the LeanGains website. I haven't read every study Martin links, but I've looked at enough of them that I feel comfortable agreeing with most of what he puts up. He's definitely not shy about providing links to support his claims. I guess I'd like to hear from the other side of the camp. Maybe it's a semantic issue round the word "fasting" not eating solid food vs being in what I consider a biologically fasted state.

D05f3050dc3d973b8b81a876202fa99a

(1533)

on December 31, 2012
at 04:36 PM

I know coffee doesn't break your fast. I meant with butter and MCT oil :)

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3 Answers

1
1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

on December 31, 2012
at 04:50 PM

I agree. I believe the real benefits of fasting come from the autophagy process. When you consume pure fat, even though it does not illicit an insulin response, it still provides useable exogeneous energy for your body, so it doesn't have to tap into it's own endogenous reserve energy (fat stores). To truly become a fat-burner, you have to be able to tap into your body's own reserves for fuel, not depend on it from outside (coupled with large doses of caffeine, too).

I'm a big fan of green tea in the mornings through fasts, and then amino acids immediately prior to working out (right now I'm just using unflavored BCAA powder, but I like Purple Wraath or TSN hyperblend the most). Follow the workout with a solid meal of sauerkraut, meat, and potatoes (white or sweet) for adequate glycogen replenishment and to facilitate protein synthesis.

Choosing a few calories from amino acids isntaed of hundreds of calories from fat also facilitates better vasodilation, so you have improved oxygen and nutrient delivery during your workouts, which ultimately makes for better workouts and better results.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on December 31, 2012
at 06:18 PM

Well, if we're talking semantics, it seems that the fat eating camp takes the word fasting to mean simply "not spiking insulin" and the other camp takes the word fasting as what it is traditionally meant- "not taking in calories."

705e66484ed64fe8e188123de398413e

(1013)

on January 01, 2013
at 12:37 AM

Agree with Foreveryoung - it's a confusion in terms. Generally you can add "modified" before "fast" when thinking of the fat eating camp. These terms could also apply to a protein only fast or even a protein free fast

D05f3050dc3d973b8b81a876202fa99a

(1533)

on December 31, 2012
at 05:02 PM

Right. I've read a lot of Brad Pilon's work and most of the LeanGains website. I haven't read every study Martin links, but I've looked at enough of them that I feel comfortable agreeing with most of what he puts up. He's definitely not shy about providing links to support his claims. I guess I'd like to hear from the other side of the camp. Maybe it's a semantic issue round the word "fasting" not eating solid food vs being in what I consider a biologically fasted state.

0
705e66484ed64fe8e188123de398413e

on December 31, 2012
at 05:54 PM

"Fasting on Fat" can be a component of any ketogenic or cyclical ketogenic diet (CKD) like the Atkins diet or the Bulletproof Diet. Another term here is Very Low Carb (VLC) which probably indicates a ketogenic diet. In the context of these diets it is not so much Fasting as simply the first meal of the day with only Fat. The diet itself is a modified fast.

In the context of a ketogenic diet, total fasting does not seem to be a very well researched topic. It is not seen as a critical component for success on these diets.

In my opinion the state of ketosis combined with what is likely already a damaged metabolism is enough of a stressor to the body that extended fasting should be avoided.

D05f3050dc3d973b8b81a876202fa99a

(1533)

on December 31, 2012
at 06:56 PM

This makes a little more sense to me. Particularly the part about it really just being the first meal of the day made up only of fat.

0
Ee6932fe54ad68039a8d5f7a8caa0468

(2668)

on December 31, 2012
at 05:17 PM

emotions tend to run high around here around buttered coffee & tea, but in my book, if you're putting tablespoons of fat in your beverage, you're not fasting. seems obvious. however, if autophagy is your main concern, the fat will not actually interfere with autophagy. you're still not fasting though.

1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

(14952)

on December 31, 2012
at 06:20 PM

Why will the fat not interfere with autophagy? It's calories. Exogenous calories are used for energy, inhibiting you from using your own endogenous calorie stores (adipose tissue).

Ee6932fe54ad68039a8d5f7a8caa0468

(2668)

on December 31, 2012
at 06:57 PM

i'm not an expert on this, or even close. my understanding, though, is that an insulin response will largely stop autophagy (which basically occurse continuously, at some level), giving fat a free pass to an extent.

Ee6932fe54ad68039a8d5f7a8caa0468

(2668)

on January 01, 2013
at 02:59 AM

well, wait a sec... it's not a moot point at all. there's an actual answer here, and i'd be curios to hear from someone who really knows the science. the jaminets recommend 'ketogenic' fasting, and i do it at least once a week, and have no interest in more fat loss.

705e66484ed64fe8e188123de398413e

(1013)

on January 01, 2013
at 12:40 AM

I think it's a moot point: the "Fasting on Fat" goal is almost always fat loss and combined with a lower calorie than maintenance diet.

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