A Small Experiment with a Little Blood and Lots of Water.

After I did my experiment with consuming a large amount of sugar (175 g) at one sitting I for some reason (which I cannot remember at the moment…or if I do remember…seems like a silly reason to do so now…) to try a water only fast. I began this on Tuesday after breakfast and continued until dinner this evening (30+/- hours).

Thirsty by Eduard Anikonov. Appreciate Anikonov's generosity in making this fine piece available under a Creative Commons license.
Thirsty by Eduard Anikonov. Appreciate Anikonov’s generosity in making this fine piece available under a Creative Commons license.

Halfway through I decided I might try an elimination diet rather than going back to normal eating – but after reading a bit about how one has a higher success rate if you prepare for said fast rather than jumping into it (e.g. by ridding your house of forbidden foods, stocking up on allowed foods), I decided I best not (especially after I considered that a number of items I had just bought would “go bad” before the diet was done).

I did not experience sharp pangs of hunger, I did not lose significant weight (even water weight), I did not experience extra fatigue or energy, etc. Everything was pretty much normal.

All that to say, here is what my blood sugar looked like from Tuesday morning until today:

  • Tuesday (4/15)
    • 9:40 am – 93 mg/dL
    • 7:00 pm – 82 mg/dL
    • 8:50 pm – 87 mg/dL
  • Wednesday (4/16)
    • 8:55 am – 77 mg/dL
    • 6:00 pm – 76 mg/dL
    • 9:30 pm – 94 mg/dL

As you can see my numbers trended lower by a few points while fasting – but nothing amazing – and they trended up after I broke my fast (and no, I did not start slow…I know, I should, I try…but I usually fail…and since it had been only a briefish fast I figured my body could handle it).

What does all this tell me? Not a whole heck of a lot other than that my blood sugar remains fairly stable while fasting or eating normally, that if I consume huge amounts of sugar it responds accordingly but fairly quickly settles back to normal levels…

It is possible to do longer water only fasts, but from what I was reading these need to be done when you can take it really easy (and for pastors, that is not the week before Easter) and are under fairly constant medical supervision (which I’m not). This article on GQ is pretty fascinating (and well-written), though it does include an unfortunate and unnecessary amount of profanity and frat boy humor.

I may do another short water-only fast at some juncture in the future, but I don’t see myself trying for a longer one…it seems to me that if I am experiencing toxicity issues going onto an elimination diet should allow me to purify any toxicity issues and expose any food intolerances.

I’m looking at using either Precision Nutrition’s recommendations¬†or perhaps Dr. Oz’s easier recommendations. I’m leaning towards the former as this wouldn’t be my first elimination diet, I tried (really tried) once before with no conclusive results.

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