I started experimenting with the Fating Mimicking Diet (FMD) in October 2019, and this post provides an overview of my Fasting Mimicking Diet results.
The Fasting Mimicking Diet is the fasting protocol that keeps on giving! I kept experiencing the results months after my last fast, which became the stepping stone that enabled me to lose 30 lbs after 40, even though nothing else had worked before.
Fasting Mimicking Diet Overview
Before we dive into my Fasting Mimicking Diet results, let’s do a quick recap. What is the Fasting Mimicking Diet?
First, let me reiterate that the Fasting Mimicking diet is a trademark. That’s why I call it modified fasting. You can purchase a prepackaged kit with all the foods you need for your 5-day fast.
Even though you consume 40-50% of your normal calorie intake during your modified fast, you get similar benefits from a 5-day water fast. I have written many posts about the fasting-mimicking diet as I was in the process of practicing it monthly. I also created various menu plans. If you want to get inspired by the delicious recipes, read The Fasting Mimicking Diet: Benefit From Fasting Without Giving Up Food.
Fasting Mimicking Diet Benefits
Let me summarize the benefits you will experience from a periodic 5-day fasting-mimicking diet:
- Weight loss: We are not talking about water loss here. We mean actual fat loss. Even better, the focus is belly fat loss. Did you know that belly fat is a sign of insulin resistance? Decreasing belly fat improves your overall metabolic function.
- Fasting Mimicking Diet autophagy: Fasting gives your body a chance to heal through cellular regeneration. Digestion uses a lot of energy. When you fast, your body can use that energy to repair itself. The process is called autophagy. Learn more about fasting and autophagy. Also, you can read Autophagy: cellular and molecular mechanisms.
- Decreased insulin levels: It is estimated that one in three Americans will have diabetes in 2050. Insulin resistance happens when your body starts ignoring the signals sent by insulin. Body weight, lack of exercise and sleep, genetics, and poor diet can all trigger insulin resistance, the precursor to diabetes. Your body needs to produce more and more insulin every time you eat can contribute to insulin resistance.
- Gut health: It turns out that bad gut bacteria die off faster than good gut bacteria. That’s in part how fasting helps improve gut health.
- Cognitive function: Fasting gives the nervous system a break and improves cognitive function.
- Cardiovascular health: Reduces your risk of heart disease.
- Longevity: Dr. Valter long specializes in studying longevity. That’s an important aspect of his Fasting Mimicking Diet.
When I learned about what happens during the fasting-mimicking diet, I knew I had to try the Fasting Mimicking Diet. Do you feel the same way?
Fasting Mimicking Diet 3-Month Results
I am excited to share my Fasting Mimicking Diet results with you! This modified fast has allowed me to reach my health and weight goals without worrying about what I eat when I eat and how much I eat most of the time. It has given me true food freedom!
I mentioned weight loss as one of the benefits of modified fasting.
For me, weight loss has been one of the main benefits. I had been struggling to lose weight for years. After turning 40, the struggle was even worst. Just maintaining my weight required me to feel deprived most days. To lose weight, I had to feel hungry constantly, and the weight loss was painfully slow. Modified fasting enabled me to lose 10 lbs in 3 months! That’s an incredible weight loss because I was depriving myself only five days a month! The rest of the month, I enjoyed sweets, gluten-free bread, wine, chocolate, and everything that makes a woman happy.
How Modified Fasting Works for Weight Loss
The main aspect of my Fasting Mimicking Diet results was weight loss through becoming fat-adapted. During my second modified fast, I knew I felt different. My hunger wasn’t bothering me the same way, and I felt good despite feeling hungry. That’s when I thought maybe I had achieved ketosis (more on that below).
- It resets your hormones and reduces your appetite. After your 5-day fast, you will notice that you feel satisfied sooner when you eat.
- It helps you understand true hunger. Most of us are not used to feeling hungry. Ever. During your modified fast, you will experience true hunger and realize that you can survive the feeling. It even goes away! Being more familiar with the sensation of hunger will help you feel less tempted to eat when you are not truly hungry.
- It reduces inflammation. Inflammation makes it hard to lose weight. By reducing inflammation, you can achieve your weight loss goals.
Let’s talk about how weight loss works when you practice the fasting-mimicking diet:
The first time I did the fasting-mimicking diet, I quickly regained the 4 lbs I had lost after returning to normal eating. However, the belly fat did not return, and I started losing weight throughout the month after that. The same thing happened every month until I lost 10 lbs after three months. That included the holiday season. I was scared to weigh myself after the holidays. I was pretty sure I had gained weight. Instead, I was surprised to discover that I had lost two more pounds!
After my second modified fast, I discovered I had become fat-adapted. I sent myself on a journey to biohack my weight loss using intermittent fasting to maintain the benefit of this metabolic flexibility. Learn more in my Weight Loss Transformation program.
Modified Fasting for Ketosis
One interesting aspect of my Fasting Mimicking Diet results is that it allowed me to produce ketones even when I was no longer fasting. Moreover, I didn’t restrict carbs.
The first time I did the fasting-mimicking diet, it was hard! I felt hungry! The second time, it was much easier. The third time, I felt something shift during my fast. The hunger no longer had the same intensity. I wondered if I had become fat-adapted (another word to describe how your body uses ketones for energy).
To help answer this question, I decided to buy a ketone/blood sugar monitor. By the time I measured my ketones, I hadn’t completed a full 5-day fast for almost two months. I had been eating gluten-free bread, desserts, fruits, etc. Yet, before dinner (which is apparently when you should measure your ketones), my ketone level was 1.2 mmol/L. To give you a point of reference, anything above 0.5 mmol/L is considered “in ketosis.”
It was interesting how fasting without eating keto could get you into ketosis. Furthermore, that’s what enabled me to start experimenting with intermittent fasting to maintain this metabolic flexibility and switch back and forth from glucose to ketones for energy.
Please read How I Lost Weight After 40: My Success Story to learn more about my weight loss journey.
Health Benefits of Ketosis
Ketosis has many health benefits:
- Weight Loss: Your body uses fat for fuel, which depletes your fat reserves.
- Improved cognitive function: The keto diet has been used for cognitive disorders for a reason. Your brain functions well on ketones.
- Better metabolic function: Reduced cholesterol, improved insulin function, lower blood pressure.
- Decreased cancer risk: Ketogenic diet may help treat cancer.
- Reduced Parkinson’s disease symptoms.
Notice how many of these benefits are similar to those of the Fasting Mimicking Diet?
How Much Weight Can You Lose on the Fasting Mimicking Diet?
It’s been my experience and that of my clients that you will lose around 5 pounds during your modified fast. However, remember that you will regain most of it once you return to eating normally. Modified fasting isn’t really about the number of pounds you can lose in this short time. Rather, it’s about the metabolic changes that occur during your fast to kickstart your weight loss journey and heal your body.
Even though you will gain back the lost weight, the bloating may dissipate for a long time. That’s what happened to me!
Even though I regained all the lost weight, my belly looked different even a month later.
The foods allowed on the fasting-mimicking diet are all anti-inflammatory. You can only consume fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, and healthy fats on the fasting-mimicking diet. This nutrient-dense restricted-calorie diet will make you feel renewed. After one morning, I woke up energized and feeling amazing.
Improved Cognitive Function
We discussed that being in ketosis helps you feel more focused and improve your cognitive function. I experienced it in the context of my Fasting Mimicking Diet results. As it turns out, a periodic modified fast enhances your cognitive function and increases your lifespan.
Fasting Mimicking Diet Results 3 Years Later
It is the end of 2022, and I am updating this post about my Fasting Mimicking Diet results because it has been a while, and a lot has happened since. I haven’t been able to do any more modified fasts since reaching my goal weight. Why? Because it is extremely hard to eat only 800 calories in five days! I have tried and ended up giving up, telling myself that I don’t want to lose more weight, etc. Some people have great self-discipline. I don’t. That’s why I created my Weight Loss Transformation program. I wanted to share how to lose weight without relying on willpower alone, so… Even in my program, I offer the option of a keto cycle instead of a modified fast to become fat-adapted. It’s up to you!
That said, when I wanted to lose weight, that was enough motivation for me at first. That’s how I finally managed to reach my goal!
How to Make Fasting Easier
The first time you do the fasting-mimicking diet will be difficult. Eating 800 calories a day for four days is hard! However, it is more accessible than doing a water fast. Here are a few tips I have learned from experience:
- Wait as long as possible before eating your first meal. The period will increase with practice. The third time I did the fasting-mimicking diet, I could go until 3 pm without too much effort (I still had coffee in the morning). I would start consuming my 700 calories and feel pretty satisfied in the evening. The first time you do the fasting-mimicking diet, you might not be able to last past lunch, and that’s OK! Remember, with practice. Your body will produce ketones and get easier.
- Let the hunger pass. You will sometimes feel that you can’t go on any longer. Remember that you will not feel hungry for less than one hour when you feel this way. I found that out times and times again. The more I feel it’s too hard, the quicker the feeling goes away.
- Coffee helps keep hunger at bay. If you drink coffee, use it to your advantage! Just limit yourself to two cups a day.
- Herbal teas are comforting and help reduce the feeling of hunger.
- Drink water and more water. When you feel hungry, you will often find that drinking a tall glass of water is all needed to take the hunger away.
- Eat some low-calorie vegetables. If you feel too hungry to go on and it doesn’t seem to go away, eat cucumber or celery. Eat a big bowl of romaine lettuce. This will help fill up your stomach without using up too many of your calories.
Fasting Mimicking Diet Do It Yourself
Here’s your Fasting Mimicking Diet cheat sheet to get you started :
Fasting Mimicking Diet Meal Plans
I offer a fasting-mimicking diet meal plan pdf in my Weight Loss Transformation program and another in my private modified fasting Facebook group (membership to the Facebook group is included in my Weight Loss Transformation program).
Moreover, I created lots of fee meal plans and recipes that you can access here, on this site:
- Easy 5-Day Detox to Balance Your Hormones and Lose Weight
- The Easiest and Simplest Meal Plan Ever For Your Modified Fast
- My DIY Fasting Mimicking Diet Plan
- Fasting Mimicking Diet Meal Plan and Recipes
- 5 Prolon-Inspired Soup Recipes for a Modified Fast
Plan for success so you can achieve your Fasting Mimicking Diet results!
Modified fasting has been instrumental in helping me achieve my weight loss goals. I am super excited about my Fasting Mimicking Diet results, and I will further experiment with them.