Siim Land on Keto & Fasting Benefits (Mistakes to Avoid + Top Tips)

Siim Land on Keto & Fasting Benefits (Mistakes to Avoid + Top Tips)

July 29, 2019 27 By William Morgan


(pleasant jingle)
– Hello everyone, and
welcome to Bio Hackers Lab.
I’m your host, Gary Kirwan
and on today’s episode
I have Siim Land.
Siim is an author, content creator,
holistic health practitioner,
and high-performance coach.
He has a degree in anthropology,
but his passion is bio
hacking and self-improvement.
He shares his thoughts
and tips on how to achieve
what he likes to call,
“Body Mind Empowerment”
through his podcast and
popular YouTube channel.
Siim thanks so much for coming
on for an episode for today.
– Yeah, thanks for inviting me and
I’m excited to talk
about some cool topics.
– Oh for sure I mean,
with my introduction there
I mentioned how you’re into
mind body empowerment, so the
topics that you can talk about
are very vast you know
from nutrition, physiology,
mindsets, motivation, so many things but
the focus that I’m gonna be talking about
and I wanna explore with you today
is the ketogenic diet and fasting,
which I know you produce
a lot of content around.
So my first question for you then is
why do you think the ketogenic diet is
ideal or maybe the best
way for self improvement?
– Well I would say that it’s
not, it’s not necessarily
always the best thing for
all situations so to say.
Like although the keto diet
in my opinion can be useful,
let’s say for you know losing body fat,
as well as you know improving
cognitive performance,
it may not be always ideal and it may not
you know work for some people either.
Whether that be because of
some genetic predispositions,
some medical conditions, or even like
certain metabolic requirements.
Like I wouldn’t, I wouldn’t
put like a high level athlete
on the keto diet just because they do need
to take into other, they
need like some other
fuel sources as well like
more glucose and glycogen
but in my own personal experience,
the reason why I’m doing
like a keto diet is because
of the stable energy levels
and more mental clarity
that I experience through the day.
So whenever I am in deeper ketosis then
my cognition is definitely sharper and
I will always have more focus
and that’s gonna in turn
help me to produce more creative work
and everything else that I do as well.
Like you know produce the
podcast, create YouTube videos,
I write several books,
and like keep myself
you know kinda free from the
dependency of food so to say.
Like keto and becoming more
fat deducted helps you to
not be so dependent on constant feeding
and not having to suffer
from these ups and downs
of blood sugar rushes and you kinda
teach your body to run on
your own body fat for fuel
which in turn can help you to
become more self actualized.
That’s the way I look at it so to say,
keto helps me to overcome
this, the necessity for
you know eating all the time
and that’s gonna help me
to do other stuff that
improve my life much further.
– And I mean I think that’s
what a lot of people would like
is not to be dictated
by their food you know.
Get hangry, yeah life is always just what,
when’s my next meal, what do
I eat, I need energy levels.
– Yeah because it, because it’s so crazy
to think that people think
that skipping breakfast
or skipping an entire day of
eating is something dangerous
or is something you know deviant.
That’s actually the norm under
which human evolved under
so to say people did have
like three squares meals a day
and they occasionally
very, very, very like,
very frequently they
would go through days,
days and days without eating all the time
so it’s actually the norm
to be you know fat deducted
and the norm to be intermittently
fasting all the time.
– Cus that actually ties
into the second question
I wanted to ask you was breaking up
the keto and the fasting.
Why do you think fasting
is so beneficial for self improvement?
And I think you’ve sort
of alluded to that,
that there’s a historical
relevancy that humans
are meant to go through fasted states.
– Yeah it is like,
fasted, fasted physiology
also has many other benefits like
it’s really going to reduce inflammation,
lower blood sugar, lowers insulin,
and everything else, a
lot of the other benefits
help to not only burn more
fat but also have like
longevity boosting benefits
and general health benefits.
So I would say that you know fasting,
the idea, the pure fact that
fasting makes you healthier
will help you to not only
improve your physical performance
but also your mental performance
and potentially help you
to live longer as well.
Or at least increase the
health span so to say.
The (stammering) youthful years so to say.
– And so with, I’m gonna
get back into fasting
a little bit more now but when
it comes to the ketogenic way
of eating, there’s so many
different ways of doing,
doing that way.
Do you have a particular
preference or that you’ve had to
experiment with different ways?
Do you have any thoughts that
if we looked at a situation
of just someone who wants to stay healthy
through their years into their old age
and has a sharp mind you
know, strong enough body,
do you think there’s a certain way
of doing keto that’s the best way?
– I think that there
isn’t like a necessary,
the best way for keto.
And the perfect way of eating a keto diet
would change between people
and depending on their
like body composition,
depending on their metabolic conditions,
and medical conditions and such,
but in general like I
myself have been trying out
different types of keto
in addition to like
the standard keto diet
I’ve been doing like
cyclical keto diets,
and targeted keto diets,
as well as like some sort
of modified keto diets
where the protein take
will be slightly higher
and the fat is reduced just
to promote more muscle growth
and promote better body composition.
Because the standard keto diet with the
epileptic micronutrient ratios
where the carbs are very low
and the protein is also very minimized,
those, those, those kinds of diets,
they may not be ideal for most people
just because the decreased protein take
and most people actually benefit from
slightly modifying their keto micros by
lowering their fat a little bit and
increasing their protein
just just to compensate
for some of the deficiencies.
– So I love that you know it’s always the
n=1, everyone’s different, depends on
your situation, your physiology,
your metabolic history.
– Yeah.
– And there’s lots of
ways to get around this,
so there’s no one right way.
And then it comes to fasting, do you,
what do you view as the, do you,
cus there’s lots of
different ways to fast.
What would be your beginner’s fast,
or the way that you would
introduce someone to fasting?
– Yeah, well.
It is true let’s say like physiologically
it could be possible to everyone to fast
and there wouldn’t be no
negative side effects so to say.
If you were to put into the wild
then the only way for you to survive is to
simply start fasting and you
would adapt quite fast, fast.
So that, in like most of the kinda,
you know things that inhibit the person
to get used to the fasting has to do with
like the psychological
habits and our daily routines
that simply enforce certain ways of eating
and they don’t necessarily crave the food,
people tend to crave more
like it’s the routines,
and eating foods at a
particular time of the day.
So I would maybe for
someone who is interested
in trying to start fasting
then I would simply
advise them to try to skip a
certain meal during the day,
whether that be in the
morning or in the evening.
Like having like an earlier dinner or like
a late, late brunch type of a breakfast.
That would be simply
a good place to start,
and to then kinda
gradually increase the time
they spend in a fasting state
and postpone their meals
in some way and time restricted
so that they would get used
to more, more of like a
running on their own body fat
and to not necessarily
be so dependent of this
this different type of meal timings.
– So it sounds like
that’s the beginner’s way,
is just that time restricted feeding.
That you have a smaller
eating window in the day
before you get into these long day fasts,
multiple day fasts.
– Yeah, yeah yeah for sure.
Like it’s not gonna be,
first of all it’s simply gonna be like
so much more difficult for
someone to jump right into
five day fast if they haven’t
done anything like that.
So yeah usually I would suggest
you know starting to experiment with
the daily time restricted feeding,
whether that be like the
16 on hours of fasting
and eight hours of adding
and then gradually moving on
into a more, more confined eating windows.
Like the Warrior Diet or one meal a day
where you eat you eat
your food maybe within
like two to four hours
or something like that.
And then after that you may
like start experimenting
with like 48 hour fasts, three day fasts,
five days fasts, but those extended fasts
they aren’t like that sustainable.
You can’t do them all the time,
and you they do hit like a
point of diminishing returns
after a while so still the
daily time restricted feeding
is still gonna be like the
biggest bang for you buck
like so to say.
You’re gonna gain most of the results
and they’re more sustainable.
– And that’s I guess
when looking at something
that’s sustainable and longevity,
that, the time restricted
feeding you can do
if you’re in your 20s or
if you’re in your 80s,
and that’s like the baseline.
And then every now and then it sounds like
you’re gonna tap into the multi,
multi-day fasts if needed.
– Yeah like I myself try to
aim for like these longer fasts
maybe once a quarter every year so to say.
So in total I may have like
three, about three to four
of these three to five
day fasts every year.
And I do them not only that I need to,
but I do them just to kinda put my body
into this deeper state of autophagy namely
and to really kinda give
my body a short break
from all the food that I eat
and then to reset the system.
And there is a lot of like a lot of
longevity boosting benefits for that.
So the reason I do it maybe once a quarter
is that you know if you do it too often,
if you fast too long all the time,
then you maybe simply
predisposing yourself
to some like muscle loss and
some other ailments so to say.
So fasting all the time is not
gonna be optimal so to say.
That’s why you wanna balance it out
with proper refeeding and proper you know
getting enough nutrients from
the food that you do eat.
– And before we get into the how to
to do multi-day fasts,
I’d like to just find out,
talk, with the time
restricted feeding window,
do you have a preference that people
would should eat more breakfast
and lunch and skip dinner,
or eat in the middle of the day,
or eat a lunch and a dinner?
I’d be interested to find out if you feel
there’s a better window to eat in.
– Well yeah like a lot
of other researchers
like Satchin Panda he has
done like this research
in time restricted feeding
and he has found that
it’s most optimal to kinda
postpone the breakfast
at least a few hours and then
consume the most of your food
within eight, within an
eight hour time window.
And maybe have like an earlier
dinner to not go to bed
you know full, with a
full stomach so to say.
That’s I would suggest that
it is a good idea to maybe
at least stop the eating window
about two hours or two to four
hours before going to bed.
So that would be like
the optimal time window
and that’s gonna help you to sleep better
and that’s gonna prevent any
of the other side effects
of going to bed with a full stomach.
But in the morning, I would say
that it is still a good idea
to postpone the breakfast at least
a few hours in the morning because
let’s say if you’ve
been sleeping all night
then you are already in
this very mild fasted state.
You’ve been fasting for
about you know eight hours,
and if you immediately
start eating in the morning,
then you’re going to, you’re going to have
like a shorter fasting window
versus if you were to
postpone your breakfast
at least until the noon
then you’re going to prolong
all the benefits as you will
get from the fasted state
and you don’t necessarily you know
usually the people don’t really feel
that hungry in the morning either.
And they much rather skip breakfast
than skip dinner so to say and
for dinner it’s always easier
to always stick to the other
social aspects of eating as well.
Like having family dinners or going out to
some sort of a dinner
party, whatever it is.
So I would say that
skipping breakfast is always
a better solution than skipping dinner
for most people and I myself find it more
sustainable as well.
– And I do hear it from a lot
of people from time to time
saying yeah I’m just not hungry
first thing in the morning,
and I have to wait till later in the day.
So there’s, I think there’s
a lot of people who,
who prefer that too.
– Yeah it’s like when you’re in your,
when you wake up in the morning,
then you will also have like
higher levels of cortisol,
which will help you to,
like a lot of people think
that cortisol is bad,
of course like chronic,
chronic level of cortisol is bad,
but in the morning that
cortisol helps you to wake up
and that cortisol will
also help you to mobilize
a lot of your body fat stores
and to break down glycogen
from the previous day
and it will always kinda
set the right fat burning
state for the rest of the day
so to say so you get
into deeper ketosis and
you stimulate the other fat
burning metabolic pathways.
So if you were to be eating immediately
after waking up, then you’re
simply blocking that so to say
you’re stopping that from
happening to a certain extent.
And you’re gonna miss
out, miss out on like
the potential benefits.
So it’s simply like wiser
idea to like postpone,
it’s like the easiest place
where you can push off
the first meal and you’re gonna
extend the fasting window.
– And a common question that
probably crops up at this stage
is well I’m going to skip the food,
can I still have a tea or
a coffee in the morning?
Or does that break, break the fast?
– I think it’s perfectly fine so to say
like the amount of
calories in coffee and tea
is like so minute just
like two calories per cup
or something like that.
And it’s not going to interfere with
the processes of ketosis or
the processes of autophagy.
Coffee and tea can actually
stimulate autophagy
to a certain extent and
they do like stimulate
some liver processes
and digestive processes
which will kinda mimic some digestion.
But in my opinion it’s not
like a big deal. (chuckling)
It’s not gonna matter in the long term,
you’re still gonna gain like
the most of the benefits
of the fasts which are related to like
the autophagy as well as the ketosis.
– And with a, bringing the ketogenic diet,
a lot of people would
have a very fatty coffee
maybe in the morning there.
Would an exceptionally fatty coffee,
like two or three cups of butter coffee
or very heavy cream coffee,
does that break a fast?
– Well the rationale is that
because because it’s like pure fat,
and it’s not gonna raise insulin
and therefore it’s gonna
keep you in a fasted state.
Although it will probably
keep you in ketosis,
I would say that it’s still gonna inhibit
some some of the autophagic
processes because
autophagy’s more regulated
by nutrient signaling
and that nutrient signaling can happen
from like all the nutrients
and all the micronutrients
like insulin, glucose, amino acids,
protein, and fatty acids as well.
Fatty acids can still
send the body the signal
that there’s nutrients around so it may,
you may, you may be still getting like
the fat burning benefits
and the ketogenic benefits
but you probably will miss out on
some of the autophagy related benefits.
Which itself is like fine
if your goal isn’t to
necessarily stimulate the autophagy,
then it’s not gonna matter so to say.
You’re not gonna like,
you’re not going to gain
a huge autophagy boost
as well if you’re fasting
only for like 16 hours.
So if the coffee’s helping
you to fast for longer
then I would say it’s gonna be worth it.
And if it’s gonna help you to
maintain a caloric deficit,
then it can be also very useful.
But at the same time it has to be,
kinda go back to the person
of what their goal is
with the fast and what they’re
hoping to get out of it
and you know how many calories
do they end up consuming
at the end of the day.
– Yeah and I’m asking you
all these questions Siim
because you’re the first person
I’ve got to explore fasting
so excuse me if I go into a
couple of the details there.
Talking about autophagy then.
So just a normal, 16/8
eating window cycle,
that, do you not get the benefits?
Or do you get some autophagy benefits?
Or do you have to go into multi-day fast
to truly get autophagy benefits?
– It’s has to depend upon like
what’s the overall metabolic
status of the person so to say?
If let’s say autophagy’s
mostly regulated by nutrients,
so that the nutrients such
as amino acids and glucose
are the main ones that regulate autophagy.
So as long as, as soon as your body
becomes deprived of those things,
then autophagy will kinda
like start increasing
in a dose-specific manner.
It’s not like an on and off switch.
And let’s say if you’re a healthy person,
if you’re not consuming excess
amount of carbohydrates,
if you don’t have excess information,
and you’re not like consuming
excessive amounts of protein either,
then your body will go into this
depleted state faster so to say.
It doesn’t have like a bigger
buffer zone to burn through.
If your glycogen stores are all full,
then it’s gonna simply take a longer time
for you to experience these benefits.
And let’s say you can
also, so on a keto diet,
let’s say on a low carb keto diet,
then you can expect to gain
some autophagic benefits
already within the 16 hour mark.
Or like fasting for then be like 20 hours,
then you’ll already be in
somewhat deep autophagy
just because you don’t
have like excess glycogen
and you don’t have that many
amino acids floating around the system.
– And you know, I’m
sure a question crops up
in some people’s mind at this stage going
okay so we’re saying
there’s all these benefits
with autophagy, is there
any way that I can test that
I’m actually doing this autophagy thing?
Or that it’s having an effect on my body?
Would you say that there is any way
that someone could test it?
– Well currently we don’t have like any
way of measuring autophagy in humans.
All the, all the tests and
all the studies are done
in other, other species like
mice and fruit flies and such.
And they measure the
amount of autophagic flux,
or the amount of autophagy related genes
you know floating around
the, around the organism.
But I would say that although
you can’t measure it directly
you can still predict it so to say.
That you can make some presumptions
based upon the research
that we currently have.
Such as you know if you know that
the word glycogen and lower amino acids
promote autophagy and
you know that fasting
depletes them then you
can predict that okay
you know around the 24 mark I will be
in quite deep autophagy already.
But there are some, some
things that may give you
some direct feedback that
potentially can hint towards
whether or not you are
in this autophagic state.
And you can measure it with
you insulin to glucagon ratio.
If your glucagon tends to
be higher than your insulin,
then you’re more, glucagon
promotes the breakdown
of glycogen and glucagon
promotes ketogenesis as well.
So glucagon will also promote the
all the catabolic processes in the body
and autophagy itself
is a catabolic process
that breaks down old cells.
So if your insulin is
high then those things
will be negated and in the other example
of glucagon being higher,
then you can predict that you know
there’s more autophagy
and more ketogenesis.
You can’t, I don’t know like, I’m not sure
if you could potentially measure
insulin or glucagon at home
but you can measure it at your doctor.
But what you can measure
at your home would be like
the glucose ketone index as well.
If your glucose is lower
and your ketones are higher,
and you’re already fasting
then you can make some
you know guestimates of
whether or not you are
in this autophagic state.
But it’s not like direct.
It’s definitely not perfect.
We will definitely want
to have like something
that was gonna give you like
direct feedback of autophagy
but you know at the moment
we don’t have anything
that is feasible in humans.
And for anyone, I don’t
think we defined the word
“autophagy” for some
listeners that might not know.
But it’s like, it’s just like cleaning up
dead or bad cells or
old cells in the body.
It’s like.
– Yeah.
– Spring cleaning the body
in a way, in multiple places.
– It literally translates into self-eating
and eating of self.
And your healthy cells
kinda start to remove
all the weaker and the
dysfunctional components
of the cells and convert
them back into energy.
– And this is, all ties into
your Mind Body Empowerment
because this gives you ability to get
the best out of your body,
the best out of your mind.
– Yeah, yeah in the sense
that autophagy is really
critical factors for
longevity and it helps
to remove you know
dysfunctional mitochondria
that cause inflammation.
And one of the reasons
why people tend to age
or they die in the first place is because
mitochondria are becoming
weaker and mitochondria
are losing their function so autophagy
keeps the mitochondria
youthful and prevents them
from becoming dysfunctional.
And also like for cognitive performance
autophagy is also quite
important for clearing out
the beta amyloid plaques
that happens in Alzheimer’s
so it can prevent like cognitive decline
and other sort of issues.
So in some other, in some other species,
for instance in mice, autophagy’s
also like directly linked
to the increased life span
from caloric restriction
if the mice are blocked from autophagy,
like they’re genetically modified,
then they’re not gonna live longer
even and they’re put under
huge caloric restriction.
Versus the other mice that
do have autophagy activated,
those mice will still live longer.
So autophagy’s still like
a really important part
of the longevity benefits that you get
from caloric restriction.
– And I wanna get into now multi-day fasts
because I think I have seen
somewhere that you share
a nice recipe, like a how to step,
to get started into a three day fast.
Could you maybe just share
some of your thoughts then?
If someone’s now ready,
they’ve done the time restricted feeding,
they feel comfortable, it’s
like they’ve broken that routine
and that mindset that
they’re dictated by food
and they’re like well
Siim said I should try
this three day fast this quarter,
just to see what it’s like.
What would be your tips for
someone who’s trying to do
a three day fast for the first time?
How do they start it?
– Yeah like.
– Or should it be
a three day fast or a one day fast?
– Well I would say that
if the person hasn’t tried
like a 24 hour fast or like
a eating once a day only,
then they should try
that first just to know.
Like how does it feel to go like
for a longer period of time without food,
which in reality like isn’t
that like a long time really.
(chuckling) But yeah
obviously like a real fast
would be like a three day
fast or a two day fast.
Like a person can start
with like a 48 hour fasts
before they try a three day fasts
because usually the most difficult parts
of any kind of longer fast
is around the 24 hour mark.
Where you’re like used to having some food
but you’re not getting it
and then you’re creating
this huge sort of a
psychological you know response
and psychological freak out (chuckling)
that you think that
something is gonna go wrong.
But in reality if you kinda skip that,
if you go past it, then
everything is gonna be fine.
But the only problem is that
you know you may get hungry
and that’s gonna make it
difficult for you to fall asleep.
Once you fall asleep, and
you wake up and the next day
then you’re gonna be in
like very deep ketosis
and deeper autophagy as well which will
kind of prevent hunger and
stop all the cravings as well.
The most difficult part is to yeah,
get to bed and fall asleep.
So what I tend to do is,
having like definitely using
some sort of herbal teas
or decaf coffee in the evening,
that can be also good to help you
to you know stave off hunger while still
being able to fall asleep.
And additional things that
can also help with hunger
is like apple cider vinegar
with some hot water.
That’s gonna be good to
shut down the hunger signals
and it’s not necessarily gonna
stop the fasted state either
because see apple cider
vinegar can promote ketones
as well as like stimulate autophagy.
A little bit, and the amount
of apple cider vinegar
you would take is also
like one to two teaspoons.
So it’s not gonna be like significant.
– And so that you, you find, sorry.
– The best, the best, the best thing,
the best thing everyone
can do before starting
of any of these longer
fasts is to start eating
low carb at least a few days before that.
Because it will help them
to become more fat deducted.
It will condition the body to
use some fatty acids for fuel
and will also deplete the glycogen faster.
So you’re going to get
into the therapeutic range
of ketosis as well as autophagy faster
if you were eating like
a lower carb keto diet.
So before, before starting
a three day fasts,
I would at least eat low carb,
you know two days before that just to
deplete the glycogen and
become keto adapted more.
And doing the fasts you simply drink
you know like some water added salts maybe
some electrolytes just to
balance your electrolytes
and to prevent any fatigue
and you know other things
that you could drink are maybe like coffee
and some herbal teas.
– Okay yeah so that’s a great tip there
to say if you’re gonna do a multi day fast
go low carb so you start
getting into that state
versus trying to to jump in
from a high carbohydrate state
and go yeah it’s fine I’ll just
jump straight into three day.
– Yeah.
– Three day fast.
– Yeah, because because
like when you are doing
these longer fasts then you
have to get into ketosis
or you wanna get into
ketosis as soon as possible
because if you’re fasting
and you’re not in ketosis
like coming from a high carb
diet or after a cheat day even
then in that case you’re more predisposed
to losing some of your muscle tissue
through gluconeogenesis, so to say.
And your like gluconeogenesis
is driven by demand
and when you’re fasting
without the presence of ketones
then the demand of glucose is still there
and your body will take that
glucose from your protein
from your muscle tissue versus
if you have ketones present
you become keto adapted before that
then there’s not gonna be a
demand for gluconeogenesis
because your body can
run safely on ketones.
So definitely the critical
part from preventing
any muscle catabolism during
a fast is to get to ketosis.
– So again great tip.
I’m just think yeah so some
people may be following
a way of eating where they have cheat days
like carb back night solution
or something like that,
another way of eating and so they’re like
oh I’ve just binged on
a whole bunch of food
maybe I should do a three
day fast to cleanse now
and it’s like no that’s
maybe not the best time
to try a fast now.
– Yeah, yeah it’s not gonna be,
it’s not, you could do it and
you would probably be fine.
But I would say, it would
be easier for you to fast
if you simply had like a keto diet,
at least one day of keto before that.
– And then I love that tip where you said
especially that first day
then by the end of the day
and you, you might be thinking
oh I’ve been hungry all day
because I haven’t had a meal all day
and it’s that first, maybe
that first or second night
where you think oh I’m struggling to sleep
cus my tummy’s rumbling or something.
And then you’d have the
herbal tea or decaf coffee
or apple cider vinegar drink
just to settle your stomach
to let you sleep that night.
– Yeah, yeah it is.
Like the most difficult
part is going to bed.
And you necessarily don’t want to,
you don’t want to cash in on all these
appetite suppressants either.
Like you don’t want to
become too addicted to coffee
and drink like five to 10
cups of coffee during the fast
because it’s gonna not be worth it
because the overstimulating cortisol
and that getting too caffeinated.
So you wanna use them only when
you actually get hungry so to say.
– And then what are your
views on people who workout?
Is it okay to workout
during that fasting period?
Or should you be, I guess it depends on
what they’re trying to achieve
in their metabolic health
again but yeah if you’re healthy
would it be okay to workout?
I’m thinking if you’re unhealthy then
you’re gonna be using
it as a recovery period
so don’t stress your body.
– I would say that it is still a good idea
to stay active and keep moving your body
whether that be going
for like longer walks
or doing some yoga or something like that.
That’s gonna be very good
and it will actually help
to you know keep your mind busy as well,
as well as prevent the hunger.
So whenever I usually get hungry maybe,
I will usually maybe go
for a longer walk instead.
And that’s gonna help to
mobilize some of the fat stores
and basically keep me satiated for longer
but other types of more
resistance training
type of workouts, those can also be useful
and they will probably help with
maintaining more muscle mass.
Because if you’re fasting
and you’re not doing anything
then you potentially will
lose more muscle mass
much more faster than if you were to do
some sort of light activity.
It doesn’t have to do,
it’s doesn’t have to be
like a very heavy resistance training,
or high intensity interval
training or something like that.
You can simply do some like calisthenics,
some pushups, some squats.
You can use like some
of the resistance bands
and you can still kind of
like stimulate the muscles
and that would be useful for
sending the body the signal
that we still need to have muscle.
And we don’t necessarily want to lose it.
– So not a big heavy workout
where you push yourself
to fatigue levels, that’s
not the time to do that.
– It’s not gonna be worth it, so to say.
So you probably won’t have enough energy
to hit PRs and personal
records so. (chuckling)
Why not, why bother so to say?
You can simply take it as a time to deload
and aim for maybe like
submaximal type of exercise
with like resistance
training with your own body
and some resistance bands.
– And so with the time
length and you saying
that you’ve experimented
with it sounds like
three to five days.
Do you think that just that three day
is the optimal window that someone
could try to get to eventually?
Cus there seems to be
there a nice balance then
for the autophagy but not
creating any negative effects
from fasting like three
days is a good number?
– Yeah the longest I’ve
fasted for has to do with
like a week, I fasted for a week.
And usually when I were
having this therapeutic fasts,
then I will aim for yeah
three to five days at maximum.
And I do think that, and
there will be probably
a point of diminishing returns.
After that point, after three days
is usually the optimal dose.
And there’s not gonna be
like a significant reason
to go beyond that unless
you have like some sort of a
real medical conditions.
If you have like maybe again
like diabetes or cancer
or some tumors then you
may want to consider
going for longer but like a healthy person
who is simply doing like housekeeping,
or they want to go into deeper ketosis,
or lose some fat then for
them it’s not necessary
to fast any longer than three
to five days in my opinion.
– And then once someone’s gone
through the fasting period,
it’s always how do a break the fast?
What’s your tips on the
best way to break it?
– What I like to do is always start
whatever I am eating
anything then I would usually
start off with some apple cider vinegar
and some hot lemon water.
And maybe sliced, a few
slices of some boiled ginger
in there as well to promote
the digestive enzymes
as well as direct more
blood flow into the gut.
And it’s gonna be good to,
it’s gonna be better for
like absorbing the foods
and preventing any sort
of constipation or such.
And it’s, it’s usually
that would be something
you know I would start
off from like any type
of fasting window whether
that be like the 16/8
or OMAD or like a three day fast.
Then moving on from there
I would have to look at
how long have I been fasting for?
If I come from like a shorter fast,
that is less than 24
hours then I would consume
maybe something with some probiotics
and some digestive
enzymes like sauerkraut,
fermented foods, or maybe some avocados,
or again some raw ginger.
Or if I’m consuming carbs or something
then I may take some like
bananas or kiwi or some fruit.
Something like that.
If I’m coming from like a longer fast,
then I may also want to add in some
like broths, broth liquids, or soups.
Something to simply more, stimulate more
of the digestive enzymes as well as
again make the gut wake up so to say.
Because you don’t
necessarily want to consuming
very hard to digest foods
immediately coming off
from a longer fasts because
your gut isn’t probably ready for it.
And it would be better
to kind of ease into it.
– So again, great tip.
I love that, all the actionable stuff
that you’re sharing here.
So coming off that fast,
something again that people
were drinking like apple
cider vinegar drink
or a lemon drink with lemon tea,
that just helps stimulate
the blood flow to the guts
to say hey get ready I’m
about to maybe try to eat here
so it’s not gonna be a
big shock to your body.
– Yeah, yeah and like specifically like
ginger and, and lemon water,
and apple cider vinegar
they also help with the
breakdown of proteins so to say.
So you, you would always want to absorb
the proteins that you
eat and just to you know
repair your body as well as
recover from the fasts better.
So that’s gonna be helping with that.
– So I’m interested,
so we’ve sort of given
the practical ways doing this and you,
so mentally and physically
like what are some of the
experiences that you’ve had
during these fasted states?
– Funny enough like when I was doing
my anthropological research for my thesis,
a few years ago at a meditation retreat,
then I was also fasting
during that time period
so it was already like a
more profound experience
where I was meditating
a lot and I was fasting
at the same time so (chuckling)
I would say that during the fasted state
I tend to, or during
these longer fasted states
I tend to experience not only like
this heightened mental clarity and focus,
but also this sort of a blissful feeling
of not being attached
to anything so to say.
I don’t feel, I don’t feel
the desire to have food even.
I don’t feel the desire to have any
kind of material possessions or whatever.
I’m simply laying there or
like I’m simply feeling my body
in some way and experiencing what goes on.
So I can feel maybe like there may be like
some sort of increased heart rate
or like accelerated blood
flow in some regions
and it makes you feel
very blissful and relaxed.
You don’t really care about
anything else that goes on,
you’re simply like experiencing
everything that goes on.
And it’s very, I would describe it as like
some sort of a blissful state where you’re
free from attachments as well as being
very at ease and very present.
– Yeah so it’s a way of
super charging mindfulness
and making you feel great.
– Yeah, yeah it is.
And like you can also
experience some aspects of it
when you are in like very deep ketosis.
And there will be like this one point
during a longer fast, maybe like around
you know 48 hour mark
or something like that,
you will experience this sort of a shift
where you can, you know
everything lights up
and you’re very alert all
the time, all the time.
And that’s sort of a part of a blend
of this raising ketones
as well as the raise
in cortisol and adrenaline
and everything that goes on.
So it is kind of a funny,
funny feeling. (chuckling).
– So I think we’ve
explored the three day fast
and the how to get fasted.
Just going onto the extreme end of things,
what do you think of
some fasting techniques
like dry fasting?
I’ve had some people
comment on some of the
interviews I’ve done saying
hey I’ve done dry fasting,
or have you ever explored
the concept of dry fasting?
With you having experienced fasting
and researched it so much,
do you have a viewpoint
on is dry fasting good or bad?
– I would say that, it may at first sound
even more crazier than
these like longer fasts,
but it does also make, make
metabolic sense as well.
Because if you’re not, if
you’re not drinking water,
then your body will still
produce the water it needs
from the process of beta
oxidation and the burning of fat,
the byproduct of that creates hydrogen so
it’s still gonna keep your body hydrated.
And that’s how camels and
other animals also survive
longer periods of dehydration.
They’re not carrying
around water with them,
but they’re simply
converting their own body fat
into water and keeping
theirselves nourished in that way.
The reason, like many research done on it,
practically no research at all,
but there are some anecdotal
results from a lot of people,
as well as different let’s
say traditional type of
homeopathic medicine practitioners
from Russia and other places where they do
incorporate into their
practice and specifically
there’s this Russian doctor,
I don’t recall his exact
name but he’s Dr Felinov
or someone (chuckling) who has said to be
curing a lot of his
patients by putting them on
these longer dry fasts and curing cancer
and other similar diseases.
There is still, there is
although there is some truth that
dehydration will inhibit mTOR a lot
and it will also stimulate
AMPK and autophagy.
So you can predict, you can
also make some guestimates
that it will have like a similar benefit
as you would get from a
longer extended water fast.
But the kinda, the degree
of intensity is much higher
than on a water fasts you know because
you’re not drinking water.
You’re probably not be able
to be as physically active
and you probably won’t be
able to fast as longer,
as long, as long as that.
You probably have to cut
it off after maybe like
three days maximum or such.
And then follow it up with a proper,
a proper dehydration period.
– I’ve always wanted to ask someone like
does dry fasting sounds fascinating,
I need to explore this topic more.
Why would someone want to do that?
– It’s like you can, you can still do like
daily time restricted
dry fasting so to say.
Like I’ve been experimenting that
and I’ve seen some good results in it
from like improved digestion as well as
more, more fat burning during the day
and simply feeling quite mentally clear.
Because you don’t really feel very tired
when you are doing a dry fasting.
If you feel, I would say
that if you were to be
drinking a lot of water,
then that would be worse
than to dry fast.
Because if you’re drinking
too much water all the time,
then you may potentially excrete
a lot of the electrolytes and minerals
versus if you were to dry fast
then you’re gonna retain
all of those minerals
and that’s gonna help you to
feel better doing the fast.
So a shorter, shorter 16
hour dry fast is quite easy
and it’s gonna be, it can be
done even more frequently than
even like a longer three day fasts.
– That’s a fascinating concept.
So yeah.
Time restricted dry fasting.
– Yeah, yeah.
– Just saying okay, maybe only
in one or two hours in a day
I’m gonna consume liquids or that’s when
I eat my meal too like OMAD.
But all those other times
I’m gonna try avoid liquids.
– Yeah you don’t have, it doesn’t
have to be like that long.
You can again like maybe cut
off all liquids after dinner
and help you to you
know empty your bladder
before going to bed by doing that.
And then in the morning wait a few hours,
and that’s gonna create already like
at least like a 12 hour or
14 hour dry fasting window,
which is gonna be pretty good.
– Again Siim this is why
I wanted to get you on,
I thought you were gonna be fascinating
and you definitely are so (laughing)
I love, I love all of these concepts.
We’re coming up for the hour mark here,
so yeah this is usually
a time when I get to ask
are there any particular social places
that you want people to
follow you or if someone
wants to contact you?
I don’t know if you’ve got, I
think you’ve some books maybe?
Or some publications
around fasting and keto?
How would people get hold of that?
– Yeah they can definitely
check out my YouTube,
which is one of my most active platforms.
Siim Land on YouTube.
On other, on other platforms
I’m also Siim Land.
My podcast is also on YouTube,
and it’s Body Mind Empowerment on iTunes.
But for my books, I do
have some books about keto,
like keto fasting and keto body building.
But I also am publishing my upcoming book
called Metabolic Autophagy which will
go into more deep, into more detail about
how do you stimulate
autophagy with fasting
and how do you balance it out
appropriately with the other aspects
of doing properly refeeds
and doing resistance training
and exercise and how do you promote
your longevity with that.
– Fantastic and I’ll link to all of these
in the show notes for listeners but
I just wanna say thank
you again for your time
and yeah your in depth
actionable tips there,
I really did enjoy that today.
– Alright, thanks, thanks for having me
and it was fun, fun talking with you.
(pleasant jingle)