A Fountain of Youth

>> Monday

Our bodies haven't changed genetically in a very long time. But we're getting fatter. What changed?

We now have a steadier supply of food than any of our ancestors had for the last three billion years. And the steadiness and regularity of our food supply is unnatural. Our bodies didn't evolve under such opulent conditions.

There is only one thing to do about it: Artificially induce lean times. That is, fast occasionally. Go without food occasionally. Your mother might have always tried to get you to eat regularly, and you often hear how bad it is for you, but when it's done right, going without food is very healthy indeed.

Learn more about it here: Under-Fasting and the Fountain of Youth.


Mary G 6:20 PM  

I tried fasting once and didnt do well it was really hard, i want to try again though. But I am quite worried about something happeneing which i read about. It said that when you dont eat for a while and then later gorge yourself it causes your insulin levels to spike up really high and cause some health issues. Im directing this to the author of the site. What do you think about this? Is it true? Or is Fasting really healthy? And if Fasting is so healthy why is it so painful? Doesnt the fact that it feels painful make it unhealthy?

Adam Khan 1:22 AM  

I have read a lot about fasting, and fasted many times, and I've never come across any information about a spike in insulin levels. That doesn't mean it doesn't happen. But if you DO find some information about this, would you please link it here, Mary?

My first thought is if you gorge on sugary food, whether you've been fasting or not, it will spike your insulin level.

But I think it's a bad idea to gorge after fasting, especially on sugary or fatty foods. It isn't healthy and can make you feel sick.

After a fast is a good time to change your eating habits for the better because EVERYTHING tastes great. An apple will taste like the nectar of the gods, so why waste the effort of fasting by breaking your fast with junk food?

I think fasting is uncomfortable because your body wants to you eat. Exercising is sometimes uncomfortable because your body wants you to stop exerting yourself and conserve energy. But that doesn't make either one bad for you.

The body often has a motivation to survive, but it takes for granted several things: That it will be difficult to find carbohydrates, that you have to exert a lot of physical energy to find food, and that salt is scarce. These are the conditions under which our bodies evolved -- conditions which no longer exist. But the body still drives us to eat sugar and salt and to try to conserve energy.

Our bodies are also well-adapted to periodic fasting. Our bodies take it for granted that food will occasionally be scarce. And it drives us to eat during those famines by making us uncomfortable. Fasting is artificially creating a natural condition. A "normal" (modern) way of eating is to follow our natural hunger which drives us to eat many times each day, every day. But having food available every day is an unnatural condition. Strange but true.

Mary G 4:21 PM  

Oh well that's a relief that you have not read about it! I think i might have gotten fasting mixed up with yo yo dieting. They said yo yo dieting is unhealthy because you are consistently going from eating a low calorie diet to a HUGE binge on "forbidden" foods. And it causes a spike in insulin. So i wrongly associated fasting with yo yo dieting by mistake.But if i ever find certain information about anything it i will definitely let you know. Do you think you could write a step to step article on how to fast correctly? I've read a little about fasts myself and there are juice fasts out there as well i've heard. And i think an article on how to fast healthily would be a good idea because people may believe if they starve themselves one day it makes it okay to gorge themselves with excess salt, fat and sugar the next day. If you have the time to put one togather that would be great. I would definitely read it! :)

I also have another question regarding fasting. In one article i think you wrote about your personal experience in fasting and said you gained some weight. yet in the "A Fountain of Youth" an experiment proved that people lost weight from fasting. I would love to try fasting but i am afraid it will make me gain weight like you said it did to you.
thanks so much for your input,
you are doing a great job with this website!

Adam Khan 4:49 PM  

Thanks, Mary. About gaining weight. I don't think it's possible to gain weight while fasting. And I have never gained weight during a fast.

Right after ending a fast, you gain weight, of course. You're not only eating (so you get the weight of the food) but you start retaining more water. However, I have never had the experience of weighing more after breaking a fast than before a fast.


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