5 day dry fast with 2 day introductory water fast


  • Intro
  • Why a 5-day dry fast? And why precede this immediately with 2 days of water fasting?
  • What actually happened?
    • Water fast: Day 1
    • Water fast: Day 2
    • Dry Fast: Day 1
    • Dry Fast: Day 2
    • Dry Fast: Day 3
    • Dry Fast: Day 4
    • Dry Fast: Day 5
    • Breaking the Fast
  • Final words

The following article outlines the experience of my first 5-day dry fast.

I do not recommend such a long dry fast to anyone, unless they already have plenty of experience with both 7-day water fasts as well as 3-day dry fasts!


A fast has been in the air for a while now. First, my last multi-day fast took place already half a year ago, and my body’s been asking for some general cleansing over the last month or two. Second, and more specifically, I’ve had nagging and quite severe tendonitis in my wrists since last autumn. (Too much bad typing technique on the laptop, combined with way too much heavy DIY building work last summer!) I wanted to spend some time dealing with this, especially because I feel as though the chronic inflammation in my wrists is slowly seeping out and spreading an underlying inflammation into the rest of my body.

Why a 5-day dry fast? And why precede this immediately with 2 days of water fasting?

In an ideal world, the best thing for my wrists would probably have been a 3-4 week water fast. In the end, like the old saying goes: only time can heal. And only a water fast is capable of such an extended duration. As strong and as intense as a dry fast can be, there’s no way it’s ever going to last 3-4 weeks! Unfortunately, though, a 3-4 week water fast just wasn’t going to fit into family life over the summer. So I thought the best thing I could do with the time that I did have – about a week – was to dry fast for as long as possible.

Up until now, I’ve struggled to get comfortably past the 3-4 day mark while dry fasting. Especially at night, I tend to get a really uncomfortable ache around the top of my pelvis / lower back which prevents me from sleeping, and this makes life a general misery!

This time, I set out to with greater resolve to find a way of reaching the 5-day mark. In the intervening period since my last dry fast, I’d given a lot of thought as to how I might maximise the chances. Theoretically, at least, I thought I had found a way.

I decided to apply two approaches, both of which were designed to minimise dehydration over the course of the five days.

  1. During the dry fast, I intended to walk as much as comfortably possible without tiring myself out in the process and then regretting it afterwards! In practice, for most of the fast this equated to a daily 5-8 km (3-5 miles), divided up into four short walks. The reason for regular walking is that, during ketosis, the process of breaking down long fat molecules into ketone bodies releases free hydrogen molecules. These then bond with oxygen molecules in the blood to form H2O: so-called ‘metabolic water’. Theoretically, therefore, the more fat burnt through gentle exercise, the more metabolic water produced by the body and the slower the process of dehydration. In my case, this was especially important because I have low body fat to begin with, which means that the amount of fat my body otherwise burns while fasting tends to be considerably below average.
  2. Unless you precede a dry fast with a long calorie-reducing dietary transition, it means that the dry fast itself begins with your normal carbohydrate-based metabolism still intact. Instead of releasing water, carbohydrates actually require water in order to metabolise. This means that the dry fast begins with a double whammy of dehydration: (1) from the dry fast itself and (2) from burning carbohydrates during the first couple of days of the fast, until ketosis is well established. This doesn’t cause major problems for short dry fasts of 24-48 hours, but in my experience for anything longer you run into trouble before long! My strategy, therefore, was to begin this dry fast with ketosis already established through a 2-day water fast. And there it was: my allotted 7 days of fasting offered the potential of a perfect storm of a 2-5 day water-dry fast.

What actually happened?

Based on prior experience, I know that two days is of water fasting is enough for me to reach a pretty good level of ketosis. Still, I wanted to maximise this further, so I applied another couple of ideas. First, I made sure that I was already tapering my calories the day before the water fast began, and, in addition to skipping breakfast as usual, I had a light dinner of only salad and olives. Second, I decided to practise the yogic technique of shankaprakshalana the following morning, at the beginning of Day 1. Here’s what happened…


Shankaprakshalana is an intestinal wash to clear the entire digestive tract. Without going into graphic detail here, the idea is to drink large quantities of salt water and practise certain yogic stretches in order to facilitate the water’s movement through the bowels: stomach, small and large intestines, until being excreted through the colon. (Your body doesn’t absorb the water due to the high salt content.) After a while, with each successive glass of water, the liquid passes increasingly easily through the whole system, until what comes out down below is almost as clear as what goes in above. For anyone interested in applying shankaprakshalana in their own fasting, I suggest doing a little research first in order to get correct and precise instructions!

My main reason for practising shankaprakshalana was to make sure that my entire digestive tract was completely clear. As much as I don’t normally have problems with bloating and abdominal cramping while fasting, I was determined to maximise my chances here, and I was hoping that shankaprakshalana could help ‘bio-hack’ the 5 days of dry fasting.

In retrospect, I believe that shankaprakshalana actually conferred two further unanticipated benefits. First, and almost incredibly, I felt absolutely no hunger through the fast (with the exception of a couple of brief and entirely insignificant tummy-rumbles on Days 4 and 5). I’m sure this must be due to the fact that, with an entirely empty digestive tract, the entire system was able to shut down much faster than usual. I also suspect that the lack of hunger is the reason behind the fact that, compared to other extended fasts, I enjoyed a much more neutral relationship with food than usual during the refeeding process. Simply no temptations!

Second, by fully emptying the intestines before their natural rhythm, the shankaprakshalana denied me the possibility of extracting the full caloric content of the previous lunch and dinner, minimal as it already was. Hey presto: another fast-track to depleting glycogen and beginning ketosis as soon as possible.

The proof of this was in my experience of Day One.

As might be expected, I was a little tired in the hour or so after finishing shankaprakshalana. It’s totally normal to lie down and rest. Normally, though, you’d follow this with a simple, nourishing meal called khicheri (also known as khichdi or khichri), composed essentially from a mix of boiled rice and mung beans.

My stomach, however, remained completely empty, along with my entire digestive system. To my surprise, I felt completely depleted not just for an hour or two, but also for the whole remainder of the day. Normally, the first day of a water fast means that I’m flying high with both my glycogen– and ketosis-based metabolisms engaged, but now I realise that my sugar and glycogen supply had been prematurely ‘cut off at the pass’, leaving no energy before ketosis was able to compensate. I did feel ketosis beginning to kick in at about 2pm but it was too little too late, and so I spent most of the afternoon feeling rather like a walking corpse. By the evening I had the shivers and my heartbeat was pounding, as can sometimes happen while fasting.

And so, completely exhausted, I hit the sack and slept over 8 hours.


The day began with a morning walk: part of my regime to gently burn calories in order to produce metabolic water. It’s true that ketosis was still only evolving, still only gaining momentum, but I was keen to apply theory to practice in the hope of preventing dehydration as much as possible. Perhaps it seems counter-intuitive to have applied this idea so soon, while I was still water fasting, but think about it. Water absorption through drinking takes place from the ‘outside in’. You drink, and the water gradually soaks inwards through the body. Metabolic water, on the other hand, spreads from the ‘inside out’. It comes into being on a cellular level and gradually works its way outwards, through the intercellular space and into the blood and lymph, until your body either uses it up or excretes it as urine. The two processes, therefore, are entirely different.

I felt confident that walking was the right thing to do, especially in light of my decision to begin dry fasting early that afternoon. Of course, this meant that I didn’t reach a full two days of water fasting before beginning the dry fast, but, within my 7-day time limit, it did consequently leave me with some transition time at the end of the five days of dry fasting – assuming I managed it. And so, first I would rehydrate with only water and herbal teas (ie no calories), essentially returning to a brief water fast for a few hours at the end of the last day. After that, I would gently add fruits and vegetables into the equation, thereby fully ending the fast with calories.

Through the morning of Day Two, I had a little more energy than Day One, but still surprisingly little compared to my experience of other water fasts. By what would have been lunchtime, though, it was already time to begin the dry fast. Fingers crossed and anchors away…


I had another walk in the afternoon, this time to the beach. (I’m fortunate to be spending this fast in a little village on an island in the middle of the Danube, surrounded by nature, fresh air and fresh water.) One of the biggest concerns in my campaign against premature dehydration was the temperature. In the middle of July now, we’re enjoying a summer of sun and temperatures in the low 30s Celsius (about 90F). Sweating was almost unavoidable. On the one hand, I could stay indoors and ignore the wonderful weather. On the other hand, I could take a more fatalistic approach and enjoy the day’s beauty for what it had to offer, sweating or no sweating. I chose the latter. In the worst case, I’d just have to break off the dry fast a little early and continue with water fasting for the rest of the week.

In the end, I did sweat, but probably not very much. (Of course, it’s impossible to tell exactly.) By the evening, though, I was beginning to feel a familiar, dull ache developing along the upper edge of my pelvis and lower back. I have to confess that this did rather worry me, especially because on previous dry fasts, the first signs of this symptom generally appear later, on Day Two. Looking to put a bright face on all this, I wrote it off to the effects of the sweating, combined with the fact that I’d already done nearly two days of water fasting, which – hopefully – meant that I was further on my trajectory than during previous fasts. Anyway, it wasn’t anything serious at this point. I just hoped it would go away by the morning.

However, by the middle of the night the aching had grown worse, and I had to get up to do some stretching focused on my hips, waist and lower back, before meditating and going back to bed. For the first time, I also felt a dull ache in my wrists, precisely in the areas worst affected by the tendonitis. This, for me, was an extremely promising sign. As I’ve experienced on so many previous fasts, injuries tend to reveal the fact they’re healing through a dull ache or ‘healing crisis’ which can last for several days or longer.


Day Two of the dry fast passed similarly to Day One, but with more energy. Similar walks. Similar sweating.

Throughout the day I began to feel my lower back again if I lay for too long in one place. Fortunately, though, it never developed beyond just a distant threat, and when it did start to drift into the foreground, walking always helped. In fact, it was today that I established the routine which would continue for the duration of the fast. This consisted of four 30-40 minute walks spread through the day: at dawn (5am), mid-morning (10am), late afternoon (5pm) and just before going to bed at night (10pm). It’s true they weren’t perfectly evenly spaced through each 24-hour cycle, but I wanted to avoid the heat of the day as much as possible. In addition, the aching tended to be worse at night, so having the walks spaced slightly closer together during the evening and night supported the pain relief. Finally, this is just the way things evolved, by following what my body was asking me to do :-).

Again, I woke at 2am, after three hours of sleep. But the aching this time was less insistent. The night of Day Two also established the basic pattern for what would continue for the duration of the fast: 3 hours of sleep, 2+ hours up and about (stretching, meditating, walking), and then another 3 hours or so of sleep. It’s true that the lower back pain may have contributed to the interrupted night. But it’s also true that this is exactly how my sleep patterns usually transform anyway while fasting, with the second sleep of the night gradually diminishing in duration. On longer fasts, this often means that it recedes almost entirely, and 3 hours of sleep becomes the norm for me, with no issues of tiredness weighing me down through the day.


I felt a little groggy upon waking and, for the first time during the fast, suffered from low blood pressure. This became immediately evident upon trying to stand up, as dizziness struck. All things considered, though, five days had elapsed since the beginning of the fast as a whole. It’s completely normal to experience a significant drop in blood pressure by this point during any zero-calorie fast. In fact, compared to previous fasts I was surprised that it hadn’t already affected me.

I also felt a little weaker compared to the day before. My knees seemed to wobble while walking, although it didn’t really affect my tempo, which, according to my wife remained completely normal. At times like these, it’s good to get outside observations, because there’s no way you can completely trust your objectivity during any fast longer than a day (that is, beyond the point that your glycogen runs out).

The weakness also expressed itself during uphill walking, which quickly left me out of breath. But perhaps the hardest moments came while standing up from a reclined position. First, psychologically it felt like I had to summon enormous strength to get my arse out of a fully reclined position. Second, physically it really was harder, and often brought on the dizziness associated with low blood pressure. I soon realised, though, that deep breathing before rising helped to provide both energy as well as support a more stable blood pressure.

In addition to issues of weakness, I also woke with a drier mouth: something which remained through the whole day and continued beyond. It was like a quantum leap into the next phase of the fast. In fact, to be more precise, it was really only on Day Three that I began to refer to the feeling as ‘thirst’. Nothing too drastic. It was more the feeling of a sticky, pasty mouth which didn’t particularly appeal. But when I asked myself: do I need to drink?, the answer remained the same: no, it’s just an attractive, comforting proposition. After self-questioning like this a few times at various moments throughout the day, the thought stopped crossing my mind altogether. In other words, I began to accept the feeling, and so it stopped bothering me.

Again, the aching lower back returned at night. Again I awoke after 3 hours of sleep and followed my usual routine before returning to bed for a second round of rest.


In every respect I had more energy today. Getting up no longer felt like a Herculean task, and there were no issues with blood pressure, both now as well as later in the day. On my morning walk, I experienced for the first time ever (while dry fasting) the feeling I love so much about water fasting: something I’d describe as an ‘expanded eyesight from the heart’ in seeing the world, in which all things flow together and become One in a single visual dance. I interpret this to mean that I still have a lot to learn from dry fasting. This is because a similar process took place in my water-fasting past, in which the feeling of Oneness began to reveal itself only once I was completely comfortable, both physically and emotionally, with living on water alone.

I spent most of the day by alternating various gentle activities with lying on my back, at approximately one-hour intervals. By the evening a real sense of calm and tranquillity filled my being. It really felt like things had stabilised today.

And perhaps they had. It’s been hinted at in the rather scanty literature on dry fasting that if you reach the end of the third day of dry fasting, then things do become easier.

Another sign in this direction: I needed only two hours of sleep during the second half of the night, bringing my total sleep quota to five hours instead of six.


Compared to Day Four, I was a little thirstier and a little weaker – not consistently so, but rather with definite ups and down. Nevertheless, compared to Days 1-3, I was certainly feeling much more ‘up’.

It’s also worth noting that for the first time during this fast I felt a slight tightening in some of my muscles, especially the hamstrings. From the start, I had determined to exercise vigilance towards dehydration, and it’s true that dehydration can cause such symptoms by forcing muscles to contract until they eventually begin to cramp. On the other hand, I continued to urinate at a steady volume (600-700 mls / day) – something which demonstrates how much metabolic water can be synthesised during the ketosis of a dry fast.* In addition, my lips and hands showed no signs of drying out. And absolutely no signs of headache or nausea. In other words, beyond the slightly tight hamstrings I presented with no signs of dehydration at all.

*If there are any chemists out there reading this, could someone please tell me how much metabolic water is actually released by breaking up chains of fat molecules? In other words, how much metabolic water is produced by burning 1 kg. of fat?

While wandering through nature on my pre-dawn walk, I began to feel the end of the fast approaching – something which filled me with a sense of subtle loss and regret, despite the physical challenges experienced over the course of the week. Again, this was something I’d never really experienced while dry fasting. Just like the expanded feeling of Oneness with All, though, I am familiar with this feeling from water fasting. Why? Because, perhaps more directly than any other practice, fasting opens up the opportunity to directly experience here on this material earth and material life our deepest Self or Soul (call it what you will). It offers us experiential contact with that element of ourselves which precedes physical birth, and, in our hearts, remains free and independent from physical needs throughout our physical life. Of course, what represents these needs better than food and drink? By experiencing that we can live without such physical sustenance, we eventually remember and embrace that deepest Self inside us. – Or, at least, we’re able to do so once we’ve given up our resistance to the challenges of fasting, both physical and emotional.

Please excuse me while I wax lyrical!

Back now to Day Five and the beautiful bitter-sweet sense of loss in soon returning to food… Well, despite those poignant moments out there next to the Danube, my feelings about daily sustenance gradually morphed as the day progressed into wild fantasies about liquid and what I was going to drink after breaking the fast. It’s hard to know whether or not this truly represented an authentic feeling caused by the slight increase in thirst, or whether it was just the usual anticipatory excitement often experienced on the last day of so many fasts – especially those which might go beyond our usual comfort zone.

Continuing the trend of the previous few nights, the ache in my lower back bothered me less and less. In fact, tonight it was completely negligible. I also had no need for a second sleep, so I’m writing this here and now on 3 hours sleep and am perfectly lively and alert!


I broke the fast in two ways. First was a glass of spring water, ending the dry fast once the full five days of dry fasting had elapsed. Second was a smoothie a few hours later, ending the fast in its entirety through the reintroduction of calories.

On my last dry fast, when that first water touched my lips and flowed through my mouth, my initial reaction was the pure sensuality of it. Surprisingly, this time what struck me was how quickly my stomach felt full – in fact, after a mere 100 mls or so (less than half a cup). Perhaps this was to be expected. It was the longest fast I’d undertaken in which absolutely nothing entered the stomach, giving it a chance to expand. Accordingly, it had contracted instead. Duh!

By the time I’d taken in my first calories, I’d already drunk nearly a whole litre (quart) of water – taking care never to drink too much too soon, especially during the first hour or so, and always respecting the limits of what felt comfortable for my stomach.

Interestingly, the pure liquid of water during the first phase of breaking the fast exercised two clear detox symptoms: an increased taste in my mouth of ketosis and a slightly runny nose – both of which lasted for only an hour or so.

In terms of gradually reintroducing calories, my first preference is usually for oranges, but unfortunately we’re too far into summer for them to be in season. So my smoothie consisted instead of an apple, a slice of watermelon, half a lemon and a thin slice of ginger. The apple is extremely easy on digestion, the lemon – as is true of oranges and other citrus fruits – helps to reawaken the liver for other types of food, the ginger aids digestion, and the watermelon was pure indulgence :-). Yes, it has a higher calorie content per weight than might be ideal, but it provided the perfect counterbalance to the palette. And let’s face it, the sugars weren’t going to kill anyone, given that the entire smoothie (approximately 800ml / 4 cups, with the added spring water included) rang in at only 130-140 calories, spread over the following three hours.

For my next meal – which I’ll cook as soon as I finish writing this article! –  I’ll turn to a very simple but wonderful old favourite of mine: pure, unadulterated tomato soup, the antioxidants of which (once again) are perfect on a sleeping digestive system. You can find the recipe here.


After you break an extended fast, it’s extremely important to follow a well structured meal plan.

If you return too quickly to a normal diet, you risk encountering both digestive problems as well as ‘refeeding syndrome’. This is a potentially fatal complication caused by the change from ketosis back to your everyday metabolism. After an extended fast, the body cannot be rushed in this process.

If you have any doubts, I offer a downloadable 67-page PDF which covers refeeding for any length of fast.

Final words

Last night, during those last few hours, I felt an incredible sense of gratitude: towards the fast, towards the Earth which provides us with a bounty of food, towards Life – both the infinite life within as well as the material life here on the outside.

I’m also grateful my tendonitis has begun to improve. The tingling and numbness in my fingertips has completely gone. The diameter of my wrists has returned fully to normal. The stiffness in my fingers (especially in the morning) has completely gone. I can fully see the tendons running along the back of my hand and along the underside of the forearm. The ugly lumpy bits on the tendons of my forearms have considerably smoothed out. I haven’t yet enjoyed much increased flexibility in the wrists, but I know from past injuries that flexibility is always the last symptom to improve during serious cases of tendonitis. Fingers crossed for the future then!

In addition, I’m grateful that my strategy for approaching this fast succeeded. In the end, then, theory was indeed confirmed by practice! Or perhaps it would have succeeded anyway, as I naturally gain greater experience with dry fasting. In any case, I think the use of an introductory water fast is something I’ll continue to experiment with on future occasions.

The fact is that, without any obvious symptoms of dehydration, I could certainly have continued this fast further.

How far? How long?

Who knows, only time will tell. It will have to wait until the next occasion.
But of course, that’s part of the fun!

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35 responses to “5 day dry fast with 2 day introductory water fast”

  1. Hi Tallis. I’m quite experienced at water fast’ from 7-21 days, and aware of the mechanism of adjustment. Concerning dry fast which i’m now at the next step towards it, Dr Sergey Filonov (known as one of the leading experts at the field) strict guidance is to start with dry fast and than possibly continue to water fast (thoroughly explained at his book)
    I do see the logic at your way. Can you explain/broaden about the seemingly contradictory attitudes?
    Thank you

    1. Tallis Barker, D.Phil. Avatar
      Tallis Barker, D.Phil.

      Hi Omer,
      Good question, and thanks for bringing it up! Correct me if I’m wrong, but Filonov’s reasoning is mainly psychological from what I remember (having read his book a few years ago): that after experiencing the ‘deprivations’ of water fasting, it’s even harder to continue onto dry fasting. I simply don’t experience this myself when fasting, and neither do my clients. It is important, though, to consider (1) the relative length of both water and dry fasts when combining the two and (2) the specific reasons why you’d want to dry fast or water fast. For example, some people find that dry fasting reduces hunger in the first two days of fasting. On the other hand, in order to maximise the cleansing power of a dry fast, you’d already want to be in the deep ketosis of a water fast.
      Hope this helps,

  2. I didn’t read your comments so maybe you already got this answer, but I happened to read an article just before reading yours and it said: “For every 100 gram of fat, the body can make about 110 grams of water, compared to the 60 grams from carbs and 42 grams from protein[v]. This makes burning your adipose tissue quite an efficient survival adaptation during times of dehydration and energy stress.” Here is the link: https://siimland.com/does-dry-fasting-increase-autophagy-dry-fasting-vs-water-fasting/#:~:text=Things%20that%20accelerate%20getting%20into%20autophagy%20are%20fasting%2C,the%20same%20amount%20of%20autophagy%20within%2024%20hours.

    1. Tallis Barker, D.Phil. Avatar
      Tallis Barker, D.Phil.

      Thanks Lesley!

  3. Hello.

    I am curious about water intake after Shankaprakshalana. You didn’t mention when you started your water intake after you finished Shankaprakshalana and after quite a bit of research I’ve seen it mentioned that one should not take in any water until 4 hours have passed to make sure there is no absorption of the salt if there is still saltwater in the intestines and I’ve seen it said one may drink as early as after the initial 45 minute resting period. What time lapse did you use and how did it work for you?

    1. Tallis Barker, D.Phil. Avatar
      Tallis Barker, D.Phil.

      Hi Erin,
      Thanks for writing. To be totally honest, I can’t remember when I started drinking again on that occasion! I’ve done shankaprakshalana a few times in the past, and, experiencially, I would agree with the 45-minute wait. I’ve never had any problem with it. Also, on a purely theoretical level, I don’t see why waiting 4 hours is going to help. If there are salts remaining in the digestive system, there are salts remaining in the digestive system (!) – regardless of the time elapsed after completion of the shankaprakshalana.
      All the best,

  4. I had to leave another comment right away lol. I hope you weren’t offended! A 5 day soft-dry fast is still pretty much miraculous! I consider you amazing for this and I hope my comments about soft-dry didn’t leave you feeling anything less than that 🙂 just observations! Keep up the good work xo

    1. Tallis Barker, D.Phil. Avatar
      Tallis Barker, D.Phil.

      Hi again,
      Just to repeat what I said in the earlier reply: it was a hard dry fast and not a soft dry fast!

  5. If you were soft dry fasting instead of hard dry fasting it may explain things. Also the fact your walks are close to water means their is humidity in the air, also relative to the soft dry fasting element. I have at times used my humidifier to alleviate discomfort from dry fasting. It’s incredible how much water your skin, mouth and lungs can soak up! Still an inspiring post tho. Maybe I can work up to 5 days too! Good for you 🙂 thanks for the journal. Xo

    1. Tallis Barker, D.Phil. Avatar
      Tallis Barker, D.Phil.

      Hi Allisan,
      I think there’s been a misunderstanding. It was a hard dry fast. I preceded it with two days of water fasting.
      Yes, the atmosphere and humidity of the environment where you’re dry fasting does make a big difference!
      All the best,

  6. Hello i dont know if you still reply but i need your help desperately..

    I have fasted before successfully i went also for a week without water and it felt good

    My question is

    Now all i have keft is just 3p kg to loose
    You have no idea how determined i am
    So can i combine water with dryfast?
    I searched through the whole internet but i cant find anyone talking about it

    My plan is to dryfast for 5 days then waterfast for 30 days. And between those 30 days there will be days that i dryfast becouse i feel much better when i dryfast then i do with waterfast!

    Is that okay?
    Please i need your answer

    I am 1.62 cm
    And weight now 82 kg

    I thought 30 days will make me loose 30 kg and after i got my body weight back i will start exercise and i can bend over to do belly workout becouse now i cant becouse the fat is blocking me.

    1. Tallis Barker Ph.D. Avatar
      Tallis Barker Ph.D.

      Hi Mia,

      Thanks for writing. Yes, dry fasting can be combined with water fasting. It’s something I recommend to certain clients suffering from specific health issues and illnesses. In order to get the most health benefits out of the dry fasting, though, it’s necessary to aim for relatively long periods, and this is something I don’t usually recommend to clients on their own unless they already have a lot of experience with both dry fasting and water fasting.

      You can also use dry fasting for weight loss, but the truth is it usually doesn’t make much difference compared to water fasting. Yes, you’ll see a faster apparent weight loss, but most of this is due to water loss (dehydration) – and as a result you’ll put it all straight back on after the fast. The main thing is that if you feel better dry fasting than water fasting, then this in itself is a reason to do it! Just be careful not to overdo it. It’s never advisable to dry fast for longer than 5 days without supervision.

      Hope this helps,

  7. Hi Tallis, I’ve heard the same thing about toxin storage in fat cells, and that fasting causes the body to metabolize their contents, resulting in fat loss as well as dextox reactions. You’ve asked excellent questions, and I wish I knew the answer too! Unfortunately, I have no idea if this is the actual mechanism, or if “toxins” are sequestered in fat cells at all.

    On the surface it makes sense, but it also seems greatly oversimplified. What I do know is, fasting has been known for centuries to heal all kinds of things, just as the body heals cuts and broken bones. So I just trust in the process, and don’t worry too much about the exact mechanism. 😉

    Relating to your previous question, I broke out my copy of “The Biology of Human Survival” by Claude Piantadosi, currently a researcher at Duke Med. I reviewed the chapter on water and salt, and realized I’d neglected a key source of water while dry fasting: extracellular fluid, which he too describes as a “reservoir.” I’d guess that’s where most “metabolic” water comes from during a dry fast.

    In a 70 kg man, about 17 liters of ECF is found in interstitial spaces (between cells) and 3 liters is blood plasma (the non-cellular, fluid component of blood). 20 liters sounds like a lot – 5 gallons – but we don’t want to wring it out like a sponge, especially not plasma.

    I was once donating blood when I saw them turn away a woman who had just come from the gym. She was so dehydrated, her blood was like sludge and wouldn’t flow through the tube. So it could be that walking while dry fasting feels good because it gets your blood moving.

    At the same time, hormones tightly regulate blood volume, pH, and osmolarity, drawing needed water and solutes from elsewhere in the body (and when the situation is getting dire, by strongly stimulating thirst).

    Piantadosi references a 100-hour rule of thumb for “human tolerance to lack of drinking water.” But he also notes that daily obligatory water loss (beyond our control) is about 1.2 liters: 600 ml through urine, 400 ml through the skin, and 200 ml through the lungs; and our 70 kg man can lose 8.4 liters before going into shock.

    That works out to 7 days without water, under comfortable conditions with minimal activity. Hot or cold temperatures, low relative humidity, and sweating will of course reduce that number, while greater body mass will extend it.

    So I’m convinced, longer dry fasts are safe. I’m just not sure I need to see for myself! 😉

    1. Tallis Shivantar Avatar
      Tallis Shivantar

      HI Sara,

      Thanks again for sharing your knowledge. Very interesting what you say about fat cells and whether they are really used to store toxins more than other types of cells. Could it be that this idea is as apocryphal as the widely spread belief that the digestive system and hunger suddenly shut down on the 3rd day of fasting?

      Thanks for referencing Piantadosi. If he too refers to extracellular fluid in the interstitial spaces as a reservoir, this sounds like more than coincidence. As Filonov says, I too can imagine that there are certain interstitial spaces which really don’t get flushed out as well as others, and so respond more effectively to the dehydration of dry fasting.

      All the best,

  8. Hi Tallis, biochemist here again. I just wanted to note that you may want to rethink your rationale for walking while dry fasting. It makes sense if you’re trying to lose fat, but you’re not.

    Fat metabolism does not release free hydrogen molecules, nor do they bind with oxygen molecules in the blood. O2 in the blood is bound to hemoglobin inside red blood cells; there is no free oxygen in the blood. Excess H+ in the blood is soaked up by HCO3-, to maintain the proper pH.

    The whole point of blood is to carry O2 molecules to cells, where they diffuse into mitochondria. That is where O2 gets “burned,” and is also where fat metabolism occurs. It’s a long pathway with many enzymes, but in the end, hydrogen ions from fat molecules (and food) are first used to “run the turbine” that generates ATP, then handed off to O2 to produce H2O (4 H per O2).

    The net reaction is a combustion reaction: long hydrocarbon chains + oxygen -> CO2 + H2O + heat + energy. Same as a combustion engine, only enzymes allow the reaction to proceed at a lower temperature (37 C).

    All of the CO2 and some of the water makes its way back to the lungs, which are exhaled as vapor. Thus, the more you breathe, as occurs during exercise, including walking, the more water vapor you’ll exhale. That can add up to a significant amount, over the course of a day or a week, especially if no external water is being ingested.

    So it’s true, the more fat metabolized, the more water produced. However, any type of exercise to encourage more fat metabolism will also cause more water to be exhaled. Given the modest amounts of metabolic water generated, especially in a lean person, even gentle exercise may increase dehydration, rather than slow it down.

    In response, the body may increase fat metabolism to access more water, but it will never be enough. When the danger point is reached depends on the individual, but conventional medicine is probably right that 3 days should be considered the upper limit. It seems risky, but reducing the body’s water content is the basis for dry fasting cycles in people with significant excess fat to lose.

    Just wanted to comment and clarify what’s actually going on at the cellular level. I don’t think dry fasting for up to 2-3 days is necessarily dangerous (depends on the person), and I intend to try it myself. But I’m lean like you, so I doubt I’d go beyond 36 hours, and keep activity to a minimum.

    That said, you’re helping me look at it as a spiritual experience, not just experimenting on myself!

    1. Tallis Shivantar Avatar
      Tallis Shivantar

      Hi again Sara,

      This detailed explanation from a bona fide biochemist is really useful, and I’m grateful for the clear explanation. I’m not a biochemist, and I suspect most readers here aren’t either 🙂

      Many thanks for putting me straight regarding the process which leads to the production of metabolic water. My information was based on Sergei Filonov’s book on dry fasting, in which he says that hydrogen atoms released through burning fat bond with oxygen from the blood. So what you’re saying is that the creation of metabolic water takes place as a direct byproduct of burning fat. I suppose in a very roundabout way, the oxygen which bonds from with hydrogen from the hydrocarbon chains (forming H2O) ultimately does come from the blood, but not quite in the way that Filonov describes – which certainly lacks your more detailed explanation!

      I understand your idea about walking leading to further dehydration. It makes perfect sense theoretically. All I can say is that, practically, walking definitely helps to extend the length of a comfortable dry fast, so long as the walking is slow and and doesn’t feel like an exertion. Obviously, it shouldn’t create sweating!

      I understand that a fully hydrated body is going to exhale much of the excess H2O created through burning fat. But doesn’t it also make sense that when someone is getting dehydrated, a lot of that same metabolic water will probably reabsorb back into the cells where necessary?

      I agree with you in starting with max. 36 hours of dry fasting. It takes time and experience for the body to learn how to get past this comfortably. You can, however, definitely dry-fast safely for longer than 2-3 days, as this study of 5-day dry fasts illustrates:
      The article goes into quite a lot of technical detail re. hemodynamic, metabolic and renal responses: something which, as a biochemist, I’m sure you’ll appreciate :-).

      All the best,

      1. Wow, what an interesting article. Thank you! As you’re aware, there are not many studies published in the scientific literature, so I appreciate seeing whatever is out there. I still find 5 days of dry fasting a bit mind-blowing. But then, I know you and others have done it with no issues, and I’m aware of cancer patients who have gone for a week or 10 days.

        When Filonov says that hydrogen atoms released through burning fat bond with oxygen from the blood, that’s a technically true statement – it just doesn’t occur in the blood. It occurs inside mitochondria, thousands of which are inside each cell.

        It’s correct to say that metabolic water is created as a direct byproduct of burning fat – as well as all other fuels too: carbohydrates, protein, intracellular detritus from autophagy, etc. The conversion is quite direct, just long and complicated! The initial steps in the pathway for each fuel type differ, and the amount of water created is different. But in the final steps of cellular metabolism, all fuels wind up in the mitochondria, where they are converted to H+, CO2, and water, with the generation of ATP and heat.

        If you ever made a battery with a lemon or a potato to power a light bulb, it’s exactly the same concept, on a nano scale. As H+ powers the ATP turbine, O2 is the final electron acceptor. Then H+ joins to form H2O, neutralizing those oxygen radicals. This goes on 24/7, and can’t stop. If the circuit is broken, you die, quickly. That how cyanide works.

        When you’re fasting, the body has many ways to keep the circuit powered, easily. But it doesn’t make enough water to sustain other vital cellular processes indefinitely, like some desert animals can. Humans have a limit, but it depends on the individual, and can vary over time for the same person. Just be careful, and listen to your body!

        Regardless of hydration status, the concentration of water vapor in exhaled air stays fairly constant, to keep the lungs moist. Otherwise, dry fasting would cause the alveolar sacs to collapse and result in emphysema, which of course doesn’t happen. So it’s not that exercise causes the amount of water exhaled with each breath to increase; rather, the frequency of exhalations increases with the respiration rate.

        Nonetheless, you and the subjects in the cited study handle a bit of walking just fine, so perhaps you’re right that it’s more of a theoretical concern, at least in healthy individuals. It’s just important to remember that the lungs are an excretory organ, just as much as the skin, kidneys, and GI tract.

        Sorry to bore you . . . thanks for reading! I just never stop being amazed at what the body is capable of, and in many cases, healing itself too. I’m water fasting right now, so I’ll work in a period of dry fasting within the next week or so. I’ll let you know how it goes!

        1. Tallis Shivantar Avatar
          Tallis Shivantar

          Many thanks for all your input, Sara, it’s much appreciated :-).
          Good point about having to keep the lungs moist – I hadn’t thought about that.
          Perhaps more important than generating metabolic water, walking obviously also flushes toxins out from the tissues. So this may be the main reason that it feels good while dry fasting, especially considering that detox is significantly stronger while dry fasting (compared to water fasting).
          While I’ve got you here, there’s one question I have which you as a biochemist may be able to help with. Filonov talks about the way that there are effectively stagnant reservoirs of fluid/water within the body which end up trapping toxins because, as larger/heavier molecules than simply H2O, they don’t flush out easily. But where are these reservoirs? Are they just local areas on an intracellular level or are they larger areas, most likely deep within the core of the body. Does this idea make sense to you?
          He doesn’t go into detail, so it’s hard to know whether he has any firm evidence here or whether it’s just a theory. In practice, though, it might make sense given the way that dry fasting can be so much stronger than water fasting.
          Thanks for any ideas!

          1. Anytime! I don’t mean to hijack the discussion, but we seem to be the only ones here at the moment. Obviously I think the topic is fascinating, so I’m glad you do too!

            I’m not familiar with Filonov or when he was/is practicing. If he’s current or at least somewhat modern, I presume the “reservoirs” he refers to are intracellular compartments, like lysosomes and peroxisomes, which function as the cell’s trash dumps and recycling centers. They aren’t the same in all cell types, and may be bigger, more numerous, or more active in some cells, like liver cells.

            Toxins, as we think of them, are metabolized primarily in the liver, i.e., converted to less toxic, water-soluble compounds for easier excretion. Some relatively harmless compounds actually get converted to toxic metabolites. Those pathways are known and linear, and the research gets funded because it’s important in drug metabolism.

            Otherwise, while “flushing out” is easy to visualize, and can be the net effect, the process gets impossibly complicated at the cellular level.

            All cells are like little cities, constantly degrading and rebuilding zillions of cellular components, and sending “trash” to its lysosomes and peroxisomes, and from there, to vesicles for export out of the cell. I suppose it’s possible that “crud” can build up inside, substances our bodies don’t have the enzymes to degrade or excrete. Also, whole cells that are worn out sometimes don’t die and get degraded when they should (senescence and apoptosis). On the molecular and cellular level, constant turnover is a good thing.

            Although this is more cell biology than biochemistry, I don’t think there’s much research on how, precisely, water fasting and dry fasting promote autophagy and internal house cleaning. It’s known that fasting favorably alters gene expression, epigenetic modifications, hormone levels, and many other cellular processes, and we can feel it during or after a fast.

            But the exact mechanism of detoxification encompasses so many processes, in so many different locations and pathways and cell types, it may just be too complex to clearly elucidate. As complex as a textbook on fetal development, from fertilization to birth. Also, conventional medicine just isn’t interested in global processes. It’s driven by a reductivist paradigm and fragmented into specialties, like an army of ants crawling all over an elephant.

            Short story long, dry fasting is probably stronger than water fasting because the body is being forced to generate its own water, as well as energy. The degradation of fat, crud, old cells, etc. that occurs during water fasting may go into overdrive while dry fasting, as the need for water can become even more urgent than the need for energy. That’s what would make sense to me, in theory. However, I don’t know that there’s much published research on the topic, because such studies are expensive and there’s no financial incentive to fund it.

            (I work in pharmaceuticals . . . which is where I learned to avoid them). 😉

            Anyway, it doesn’t seem to me that Filonov is necessarily wrong about anything, but he may paint in broad brushstrokes for a lay audience, or maybe some of it gets lost in translation.

            I don’t feel like I answered your question. But thanks for letting me ramble!

            1. Tallis Shivantar Avatar
              Tallis Shivantar

              Many thanks for explaining the nitty-gritty of what’s going on here with lysosomes and peroxisomes :-). It’s important for us all to understand what’s going on inside!

              Yes, intracellular reservoirs make much more sense than anything else on a larger scale. It’s a shame that Filonov doesn’t go into greater detail – but like you say, the exact routes are largely unknown for a lot of this stuff. I’m also sure that the Google translation I had available was often highly dubious!

              I think you hit the nail on the head when you said this:
              “Short story long, dry fasting is probably stronger than water fasting because the body is being forced to generate its own water, as well as energy. The degradation of fat, crud, old cells, etc. that occurs during water fasting may go into overdrive while dry fasting, as the need for water can become even more urgent than the need for energy.”

              Very clear. Very powerful.

              If you don’t mind me asking one last question, in the world of fasting we constantly hear about the way that many toxins are sent away for storage in fat cells, where they are effectively quarantined from the rest of the body and therefore can’t do harm. This is why water fasting helps us detox, because burning up fat cells through ketosis also forces the body to expel the relevant toxins once and for all. Can you confirm that indeed this is the case and, assuming it is, can you explain (1) how these toxins are actually stored away in fat cells and (2) why toxins are sent specifically to fat cells for storage?


              I think y

  9. Sara Burnside Avatar
    Sara Burnside

    Hello! I’ve been scouring the internet for days looking for info like yours, thank you! About a week ago I had an accident and tore my ACL and strained my MCL. Right after it happened i knew it was very bad and immediately started water fasting. I’ve done IF and one day fasts forever but 3 days is the most I made it water fasting because I worked the whole time, and it’s an active job with food literally in my face all day so it was a little difficult. I just finished a 5 day fast since I’m basically bedridden and it was nothing! So, since I went from an unhealthy diet and a decent amount of alcohol all the time before starting this fast, I figured I’d stop it and nutrient-load (so all my groceries don’t go bad is one big reason, I’ve lost my income because of this), then start another one and go 2-3 weeks.

    How soon do you think it would be safe to start this fast? I was thinking about 5 days of eating every organic anti-inflammatory superfood I can think of and staying in ketosis. But a 5 day fast quickly followed by a 2-3 week one sounds like way too much. These are extreme circumstances though, my income is gone, I have no insurance, and need to heal as quickly as humanly possible. Any advice on all this would be greatly appreciated!

    1. Tallis Shivantar Avatar
      Tallis Shivantar

      Hi Sara,

      Thanks for sharing, and sorry to hear about your situation. If you want to nutrient load, I’d definitely give yourself more than 5 days. At least a couple of weeks of clean, healthy whole foods would make more sense to me. However, most people can certainly manage a 5 day water fast followed by a 2-3 week fast in quick succession.

      All the best,

  10. I’ve done 2 4 days dry fasts in the last 2 months and this month I’m currently doing my third. I’m combining with water fasting because I want to get to 3 weeks of fasting in total. The first 2-3 days I usually feel quite good, but the 4th is very hard and I usually end up drinking water at the end of it or the next day. This time I’m hoping to pass that barrier of day 4.

    I was just wondering whether I’m doing something wrong or is my body dehydrated, since I can only pee 100-200ml max throughout the day and nothing more, but I lose close to 2 pounds each day when dry fasting. With water fasting the weight loss is less and I do pee more but not significantly.

    I do walk at least 2-3km per day but I also go to work (sedentary office job) and work at home during the nights when I cannot sleep. I cannot incorporate fasting into my lifestyle otherwise, so I can’t really get any more free time to rest 🙁

    So far my skin cleared tremendously, but I also do it for some other ailments including knee joint pain and weight loss.

    And reading your experience, I find it really interesting that I also get the lower back pain (especially in the first dry fast it was quite intense) but not in my 3rd dry fast the pain is almost gone.

    Although I did 2 enemas before starting the dry while I was still on water, I think my intestines aren’t completely empty and my stomach is a bit bloated even though this is my 4th day without food in total. Do you think doing an enema on the 3 day of the dry fast will interrupt it? I do have a lot of gas and my bowels gurgle a lot, so I’m guessing an enema will prevent that and flatten my stomach.

    Thanks for sharing your experience.

    1. Tallis Shivantar Avatar
      Tallis Shivantar

      Hi Boyana,

      Thanks for writing.
      Alternating water fasting with dry fasting is a powerful combination. Just make sure you don’t overstep your body’s natural comfort zone while doing the dry fasting! So, as much as you may WANT to overstep the 4-day barrier, don’t force yourself to do so if your body is telling you otherwise.

      I wasn’t sure if you meant that your urine output is 100-200ml per day or per occasion. If it’s only 100-200ml per day this is very low, and you should NOT be aiming to increase the length of your dry fasts just yet. Instead, continue with comfortable 2-3 day dry fasts until your daily urine output increases by itself. I promise you that with enough experience this will happen naturally, as your body adapts to dry fasting. A more normal urine output would be about 200ml THREE times a day, not just once. (Of course, the exact amount will depend from individual to individual.)

      You asked about an enema. Yes, an enema will certainly interfere with the dry fast. Given the fact that you’re dehydrated, your intestines will try to absorb as much water as possible. If I were you, I wouldn’t force out a 4th day but rather return to water fasting – during which time an enema is perfectly well suited.

      Hope this helps,

      1. Thanks for your reply.

        Yes, I do mean that little output per day. It even burns when I do it, so probably something isn’t right. So I’ll just go back to drinking water only after 2 days of dry, and then maybe go dry for a day in the middle of the water fast because I don’t feel good drinking water all the time anyway.

        How much water do you drink during the fast? For me is impossible to drink more than 700mL or so. If I force it, I feel nausea.

        Thank you very much for you info once again. I truly find it useful.

        1. Tallis Shivantar Avatar
          Tallis Shivantar

          Hi again,
          The amount of water you “should” drink varies from person to person. Your thirst will let you know. But if you find it impossible to drink more than 700ml per day, you don’t want to force it! Just follow what your body is telling you. It’s the same thing as when you were dry fasting: your body was letting you know that 4 days is too long for you. So the best thing is to go to your comfortable limit but always respect it!

    2. I’m experienced with water fasting, and curious to try a dry fast. Thank you for all the great info!

      In response to your chemistry question, physicist Ruben Meerman addressed exactly this point in an entertaining Tedx talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vuIlsN32WaE

      He calculates that body fat is converted to 84% CO2 and 16% H2O (by mass). So 1 kg fat yields about 160 grams of water, or about 160 ml (water = 1 g/ml).

      I’m a biochemist and his math checks out, more or less. However, this isn’t happening on a lab bench, where all reactants and products can be carefully measured. I would emphasize that so many variables come into play in a biological system, that only a rough approximation is possible.

      For example, the more body fat one carries, the more water it’s stored with (and is released when the fat is lost). Also, the chain length of the stored fatty acids would make a difference, which depends on what one eats, possibly over a long period of time. In addition, hormone levels can also affect fat metabolism, which vary widely among individuals. These are just the first few variables that come to mind; I’m sure there are many more. I’d say Meerman’s estimate is adequate, but a rough estimate is all it is, and all it can be for a given person. Hope this helps!

      1. Tallis Shivantar Avatar
        Tallis Shivantar

        Hi Sara,
        Many thanks for this! I’ll respond in greater length to your second comment,

  11. Thanks for your reply. I live in the Pacific NW and when younger would go on long hikes in the North Cascades. I remember watching black bears pulling salmon from the river and eating them and later on the trail watching them eat mountain huckleberries. Putting on the fat needed to survive the winter before hibernation. Consuming their body fat and creating metabolic water. This is true for people as well. The ability to store body fat by consuming carbohydrate was an evolutionary imperative. People who could efficiently store fat from carbohydrate had a greater chance of winter survival. Similar to the bear. Unfortunately, we now have an abundance of carbohydrate constantly available and spend very little energy to find it. No long distance running necessary! And I believe this constant carbohydrate excess is the primary source or modern degenerative disease. The inflammatory response to carbohydrate is individual, but the result is the same. A degenerative disease with eventual death. All unnecessary and preventable. Ketosis, autophagy, and fasting help heal and reverse these diseases. Now on to fasting!

    I will be doing a five day dry fast sometime these next few months as my schedule allows. I found the dry fast much easier and superior than my water fasts. My greatest concern going longer is the difficulty I had sleeping. Each night harder than the last. Not any physical discomfort, rather my mind would not turn off. At times, I was aware that my body was asleep, but my mind was still engaged. Adding two more nights following this pattern is the obstacle that has kept me from dry fasting again. Any suggestion? Or is this inevitable and I accept it.


    1. I totally agree: the key here is in the ability to burn fat. But that doesn’t have to be done by eating a ketogenic diet. You’re right – you don’t need to be a distance runner either – although that also doesn’t hurt health-wise :-). The key, rather, is through regular fasting. Intermittent fasting is not enough here. I’m talking about fasts of at least 3 days long, if not preferably at least a week. Long fasts allow you to enter a deeper level of ketosis than what you reach on even a ketogenic diet.

      Again, I’d stress that a meat-based ketogenic diet excludes a lot of food sources which are important to health. This – along with the emphasis on regularly eating meat in most ketogenic diets – is probably one of the main reasons that long-term ketogenic diets lead to higher rates of mortality than other diets. If you look at our physiology, it is primarily that of a vegetarian: (1) with a long intestinal system and (2) teeth designed for grinding rather than tearing flesh. We’re simply not designed to eat meat regularly.

      In terms of your upcoming fast: yes, a lot of people find dry fasting easier because of the simplicity of it, because absolutely NOTHING goes into your body, not even water.

      As far as the lack of sleep goes, you can’t fight it! You simply don’t need as much sleep as usual. All you can do is learn to accept it. As funny as it might sound, we use sleep as a means to escape the ego. After all, it’s tiring to live with our ego all day long ;-)… (I’m only half joking here!) Fasting naturally brings us closer to facing our ego and hopefully letting it go for a while. If you practice mindfulness, the night is a wonderful time to meditate. If you don’t practise meditation, then the night can be a wonderful time for creative mental work.

      The main thing, though, is not to fight the lack of sleeplessness. Rather, try to enjoy the fact that you’re awake and not sleeping away your life like the rest of us!


      1. I read your fasting diary and noted the walking emphasis. Part of my lack of sleep manifests as a feeling of being trapped in bed or within the house. Or, as you suggest, trapped with my ego and no distractions. Perhaps walking meditatively at night, regardless of the time, would be a way to still my restless mind and relax my body.

        I agree with your emphasis on longer fasts over intermitted fasting. We do find it a safe and effective method to introduce people to fasting. The fear the average person has over missing a meal, much less an entire day, is something we work with at our clinic. If we can get them comfortable with 36 hours without food, introducing them to longer fasting is much easier, and the patient can make an informed decision. We cannot professionally recommend longer fasts as fasting is not recognized as a standard of care.

        I will try mindfulness while walking at night on my next fast. And where I live, that will mean walking at night in the rain! I always enjoyed running at night in the rain. Everything is muffled and quieter and you can focus on the sound of your breath.


        1. Walking meditatively at night is wonderful while fasting – do try it! The world outside has quietened to reflect the state inside…

      2. Thanks for your reply. I will add mindful night walking to my program. I noticed the amount of walking you did while reading your diary. I can easily walk from my home safely and quietly at night. I know I need much less sleep as the body is not using energy to digestive during the fast. It never occurred to me to simply go outside and walk at night!

        My goal is to fast before winter. I will let you know how it goes.



  12. Thank you for the information. I have done many water fasts over the last forty years but only one three day dry fast about a year ago. I decided to do a five day dry fast and immediately found your site this morning. First place I came to. I am on a ketogenic diet off and on for years, and moving into a fast while in ketosis is much easier. I believe that we evolved while eating a ketogenic diet and our evolutionary experience with fasting was one of moving from ketosis into the deeper state of ketosis that occurs during a fast. If you are already in ketosis, no need to water fast first. Also muscle mass is more protected. At our clinic we treat people by placing them on a ketogenic diet and use intermitted fasting when appropriate. All the modern degenerative diseases are healed with this protocol.

    Are you aware of the ultra marathon and distance running research being conducted on athletes while in ketosis? Superior results to glucose diets. Word records are being broken by these ketogenic runners. No hitting the glucose wall. There is a particular way you have to train but the results will manifest.

    If you are interested read Primal Endurance by Mark Sisson. A good place to start.

    1. Tallis Shivantar Avatar
      Tallis Shivantar

      Hi Michael,

      Thanks for writing and sharing your thoughts. I definitely agree that it’s easier to begin a fast while already in ketosis – for a start, there’s no major metabolic change taking place! I agree partially with the concept of the ketogenic diet as homo sapien’s “original” diet. There’s no question that, there would have been periods out there on the African savannah when the majority of our calories would have come from only big game, and thus low-carb. But it’s also true that there would have been times of the year (and especially so in more temperate climates) when we would have been gorging ourselves on mostly berries and fruit – and thus living on a high-sugar diet.

      Rather, what differentiated the members of ancient hunter-gatherer societies is the distances they travelled to search for food. They burned huge amounts of calories. In a way, they were the world’s first ultra marathoners :-). Because they were constantly burning calories, and because – whether or like it or not – they were also frequently fasting due to shortages of food – they were able to effortlessly enter ketosis any time they needed, regardless of whether they were eating low-carb at that particular time of year.

      I experience this in my own body. I’m also an ultra runner. I’m also a vegan. But because I’ve been regularly fasting for years now, I have no need for any of those awful glucose gels or other sugars to get me through the miles in the way that most other vegan athletes do. While running, I eat only about 100-200 calories per hour (usually either dates or pretzels), which is similar to the caloric intake of ultrarunners who eat ketogenic diets and sustain their runs mostly on ketosis.

      Despite the benefits of ketogenic diets, there’s one big downside. Recent research suggests increasingly that those who live on a ketogenic diet have higher mortality rates. I’ll give the most recent example, reported here:

      I respect the use of ketogenic diets in therapy. They certainly have their place, as in cancer cases in which tumours thrive on sugars. But in my experience, the best diet in therapy depends on the particular issue and the individual person. Vegan diets, for instance, can work equally well if not better in dealing with autoimmune issues.

      This is nit-picking, though. The common thread here is fasting!
      So whether it’s just intermittent fasting or an extended healing fast, the best thing anyone can do is try it!


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