weight-loss-nutrition-fitness-keto-low-carb

 

Jason Fung is a world expert on the topic of weight loss and intermittent fasting. He has helped over a thousand patients not just lose weight, but also help them let their body heal themselves without the use of unnecessary medication or drugs. He advocates fasting as more than a way to efficiently lose weight, but also help detox the body.

In part 2 of our episode, Jason gives his insight on the myths surrounding fasting, eating, and exercise. He answers the questions on whether you lose muscle when fasting and why it’s alright not to eat breakfast. He also explains why you should cycle your fasting periods and how to get yourself motivated to start and continue your new lifestyle choice.

“Everybody thinks they should eat 6-7 times a day and guess what? Obesity is a problem.” Dr. Jason Fung

On Today’s Episode of the Low Carb Leader:

  • Studies have shown better results in terms of weight loss and lean muscle preservation.
  • When you’re burning protein, the body is also building a backup.
  • Native Americans and other native people have feast and fast cycles all the time, yet they’re not fat and still have lots of muscle.
  • It’s not important to eat as soon as you get up. Your body is helping you use your own blood sugar as energy and gets you ready for the day. When you eat, you shut it down.
  • Fasting can be done or paused whenever you want.
  • The best way to stay motivated while fasting is to observe results.
  • Who should not consider fasting.
  • If you take a long term fast, make sure you get all the nutrients before.

 

Jason’s Top 2 tips for fasting:

  1. Get good information.
  2. Give fasting a try and see how your body responds to it.

 

The Takeaway:

  • We need to rework our relationship with food. Food isn’t inherently bad unless it’s causing you to be unhealthy.
  • Always ask your doctor if you are able to fast or if your medication requires you to ingest something.
  • Let your body burn off all that sugar. Let your body heal itself.

Connect with Dr. Jason Fung:

 

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Read Podcast Transcript

025 – Intermittent Fasting with Dr. Jason Fung, Part 2

 

DAN:

Hello, and welcome to The Low Carb Leader podcast. I’m your host, Dan Perryman, and you have joined me for Episode 25. In today’s episode we will have part two of the Dr. Jason Fung interview. Part one was the most downloaded episode in the history of the podcast, so that’s very cool. So I know you enjoyed part one, and I know you will enjoy part two, as well.

Before we get into the interview I just want to remind you that on March 15th we will be kicking off the 14-day Tabata challenge. If you want to sign up just go to the website, thelowcarbleader.com, and you can sign up on the homepage. We hope you will join us for the Tabata challenge. Right now we have about 700 people signed up. So we’re looking forward to doing Tabata together. If you enjoyed part one I would ask that you go to iTunes or Stitcher and subscribe to the podcast. Besides the Dr. Fung interview we have a lot of great episodes already, and there’s a lot more great episodes coming out. So please join us as a subscriber. You can also find me on Facebook at The Low Carb Leader, on Twitter @Daniellperryman, and on Instagram @thelowcarbleader. So please join us on social media, and we look forward to you being part of our community. All right, let’s get to part two of the interview. Dr. Jason Fung.

It says if I fast and eat 600 calories and my body burns the rest, how much muscle will I lose? And that question is from Tim, and welcome [inaudible 0:01:51.9].

Will I Lose Muscle During a Fast?

FUNG:

So again, if you look at fasting, the answer is zero. So if you look at studies of fasting you can compare – and they’ve done this – caloric restriction versus alternate daily fasting. So they did it for a 32-week period where some people just took their – they reduced their calories every day, and other people went on alternate daily fasting. So one day they would eat zero, and the next day they would eat whatever they felt like eating, and the next day they would eat zero again. At the end of that 32-week period what they found was they measured the lean body mass as a percentage of their total body mass. First of all, the weight loss was slightly better with the fasting. But if you look at percentage body mass, so the lean body mass went up slightly in the caloric restriction because you’re losing fat. So it went up by about 0.5%. But in the alternate daily fasting it went up by 2.2%. So again, if you look at studies of fasting what you find is that it’s like four times better at preserving lean body mass.

 

DAN:

That’s awesome.

 

FUNG:

And again, you don’t – it’s not just breaking down. You can’t ignore the second part of it, which is that when you eat again you build that all back up. That’s just as important. So everybody looks at the fact that oh you’re burning a bit of protein here. It’s like yes, you are, but what about this part? You don’t count the fact that the body will build it back up? So studies, like real-world studies of people who fast don’t show any breakdown. So let’s take an example. If you look at traditional societies, the Inuit or, you know, the Native Americans or wherever, the Bushmen of Kalahari, people in Africa, they have these feast-famine cycles all the time. When there’s nothing to eat they don’t eat. So if you burn protein all the time, well these Inuit or these American Indians or Native Americans should be little balls of 100% fat, but they’re not. I mean now the native peoples have a lot of problems, but that’s because they’re eating all sugar and flour. But the traditional, when we think of the traditional Inuit, Native Americans, native Canadians, they’re lean; they’re strong; they’re healthy. Well what happened to all that muscle burning? Well they kind of ignored the fact that when they ate again that muscle kind of came [inaudible 0:04:12.6].

 

So you don’t have to worry about that. Everybody worries so much because there is so much kind of scaremongering that goes on out there, and a lot of it was put in place by the food companies that said you’ve got to eat all the time, keep your hunger down, this and that this and that. But they made that up. All that stuff was made up. Oh, you’re going to burn your protein. You’re going to do this, you’re going to do that. And they made all that up. Where is your evidence that it actually works? Like people have fasted – so if you look at religions, for example, okay, so people do these fasting for religion. So let’s turn the clock back two hundred years where people did do all of this religious fasting. Were they little balls of 100% fat? I don’t think so. There was no obesity. There was no type II diabetes. We go now to where we are, everybody thinks they should eat six, seven times a day. And guess what; obesity is a problem.

 

DAN:

Right. I remember one of your comments from one of your YouTube videos. You get the question of if I fast will I get fat, and you were like how can you get fat when you’re not eating? I think that’s just the common sense. But I think to your point, the culture, it’s so countercultural that the Kellogg’s of the world and the big food companies have us convinced that if we don’t eat those Frosted Flakes every morning that are enriched with minerals and vitamins and drink our orange juice that we’re going to never make it through the day.

 

Isn’t Breakfast the Most Important Meal of the Day?

 

FUNG:

Exactly. And that’s the whole thing about breakfast, which is super controversial. Is it so important to eat as soon as you get up? And I always say no. Like if you look at the body, before you wake up there is a surge of hormones, cortisol, growth hormone, which actually is pulling some glucose back out of your body, pumping it into your system that is getting you ready for the day. That’s why if you look at studies of circadian rhythm, 8 AM is the period of time in most people where their hunger is the lowest. It’s also the period of time where it’s the longest since you’ve eaten anything. So it’s not merely that you have nothing in your stomach. Your body is now pumping glucose. It’s burning fat, pumping glucose into your body to get you ready for the day. Now all of a sudden you eat something and you’ve kind of sort of –

DAN:

Shut it off.

 

FUNG:

Shut it down. It’s like why would you want to do that? So all those studies of breakfast, for example, all the studies that were very supportive of eating breakfast were paid for by the breakfast food companies. And they’ve been very good about kind of convincing us because it’s been a consistent message for decades. They have all the doctors, all the dietitians convinced that if you don’t eat breakfast all of a sudden you’re going to shut yourself down. It’s like that’s ridiculous. Your body has the ability to pull that sugar back out of your system. I don’t eat breakfast probably five days out of seven. I do just fine. I work fine. Everything works just fine. In fact a lot of times I feel better because I’m a little sharper throughout the day than if I ate a big, you know, Frosted Flakes.

 

DAN:

And I think you said that you eat breakfast on the weekends because your family. And I think that’s a really good point to bring up is that we’re so used to just shoveling in food that it’s just something we do. But to take the time and actually share a meal with somebody, I think that’s –

 

FUNG:

Yeah, and this is the thing is that we need to kind of rework our kind of relationship with food. Food is not intrinsically bad. But if you’re obese, or if you’re type II diabetic, yeah you have to kind of make some sacrifices. But what you don’t want to do is just say okay, you know I would have dinner with you, but I’m fasting so see you later. And I’ve had patients do that. And I say no, that’s not the right thing because the whole act of eating, it’s a social thing. We’re social animals. It’s very important. We bond over food. We take each other out to meals, and we celebrate with food and stuff. So it’s not that it’s a bad thing. But you’ve got to fit it in where it fits in. Breakfast is the easiest thing to cut out because a lot of times we’re just kind of rushing or shoveling it in, and lunch is often like that, too. So then if you are working, for example, and you simply work through lunch, nobody really misses it that much. But if you have dinner with your family every night and then you want to not do it, it’s like okay, but that’s a total disruption of your normal family dynamics. And it’s not that good to do that because it’s really a way to fit it in.

 

And that’s where fasting is completely flexible. If I am on holidays I may eat breakfast every single day. It’s okay. But then the next week when I’m not on holidays I will just go back to my routine. It doesn’t matter. You can do it one week, you can not do it the next week. And if I gained a lot of weight over, you know, if I go on a cruise and I gain a lot of weight, well you know what, I can do more fasting the next week. And it’ll make up for it because I think that this is the thing that people always think that a steady diet is the best. It’s not. I think actually an intermittent diet is actually the best because life is intermittent.

 

DAN:

And your body is smart. You start restricting your calories on an ongoing basis your body is, like you said earlier, it’s going to adapt to that immediately. Intermittent fasting kind of tricks it in a way, right?

 

Why People Struggle to Lose Weight Long-Term

 

FUNG:

Exactly, exactly, because what it does is it says to the body, well it’s like don’t count on getting 1500 calories every day. Today you’re getting zero. So if you don’t switch over and start burning your stores of food energy – remember that fat is merely stored food energy. That’s what it is. That’s what it does. And if you go to zero you’d be dead. So your body is not that stupid. It just flips right over, starts burning it. And guess what; if you look at – so here’s the other thing is the resting energy expenditure. So there’s two reasons why people can’t lose weight on a long-term basis. One, we talk about is the hunger issue. When you simply restrict calories your body actually increases hunger. We know that for sure. So if you go on a 1500 calorie diet when you’re used to 2000, you go down to 1500, but your body starts signaling you to eat. So that’s very bad because your body is always wanting you to eat, and it’s not a lack of willpower. It’s a hormonal issue. So that’s one thing, and the fasting gets around that because it actually lowers the ghrelin rather than raises it.

 

The second thing is that your body starts to shut down. So instead of burning 2000 calories you go down to 1500. It makes losing weight a lot harder. So again, if you look at studies of resting energy equivalents – so again, going back to the study where they compared caloric restriction versus non, what you see is that when you simply cut your calories your expenditure of your calories goes down. It went down in that experiment by about 76 calories a day. So that’s not good in the long term. But the fasting one went down only by about 25. In fact it was statistically not significantly different from zero. So in essence they didn’t shut down, and that’s a huge advantage.

 

So the two reasons why people can’t lose weight, which is the hunger and the decreased energy expenditure, you completely circumvent that. In fact, it works for you, not against you. And that’s a huge advantage. So over four days of fasting – so if you take somebody and they start fasting just like you did, and you measure how much energy your body is burning at the beginning and the end, your body actually, on average, somebody will burn 10% more energy on day five of that fast than you started.

 

DAN:

That’s amazing.

 

FUNG:

It’s amazing. And that’s why people feel so good. They come out, and they say I felt amazing through that fast. I have so much energy. Sometimes they can’t sleep, and then they call me all bothered, but then we can help them. But they’re like I had so much energy. My mind was so clear. I could do so much work and all this stuff, and I was losing weight the whole time. And it’s like yeah, exactly. You’re just feeding your body through your body fat. That’s all you’re doing is letting your body eat your body fat. And guess what; that’s okay.

 

DAN:

Yeah, and it scares people.

 

FUNG:

It scares people to death.

 

DAN:

I probably look like a dork coming up here, but it says, from Juanita, what advice do you think to help with daily motivation? And then I can’t read the name above. Oh that’s from Tim. Hopefully – so motivation, how do you stay motivated?

 

How to Stay Motivated to Keep Fasting

 

FUNG:

I think what motivates people obviously is seeing results. So if you see that you’re losing weight then you’re motivated to continue because you see that it’s working. And two, of course, is that it’s not as hard as most people think it is. Now there is a period of time, about two weeks, where people need to adjust. If you’ve never fasted, then yeah, it can suck for two weeks. But your body gets used to it. And it’s like anything. It’s a stress on the body. If you exercise and you’ve never exercised, then it’s going to suck for a couple weeks, too. Your muscles are sore. You don’t feel so good. But nobody would say exercise is a bad thing. Fasting is the same thing. You can almost liken it to a muscle. As you do it more, it gets easier and easier. But the first little bit you do have to kind of force yourself through that.

 

Going from a low carbohydrate diet to fasting is far easier, and we see this all the time. If you go from a 50%, 60% carbohydrate diet, which is sort of a standard American diet, to fasting, it’s not good because if your body is used to burning fat, then whether you burn fat through your diet or fat from your body makes no difference, an easy – transition is very easy. If you’re used to burning carbohydrates and sugar now you have to burn fat because it’s body fat. Well that’s a lot harder. So if you want to make it easier and you want to transition it and make it easier, well you can simply switch to a very low carbohydrate diet, ketogenic diet or whatever. And people find that it’s very easy to swing over and just do a little bit of fasting, and then it makes it a lot easier.

 

So staying motivated yeah, that’s always an issue, and it’s mostly – for us it’s mostly checking their waist size. For us we deal with a lot of type II diabetes, so we keep them motivated by showing them the results. Hey, look, your bloodwork look so great. Hey, look, you’ve lost so much weight. Hey, look, your waist size has gone down so much. And people notice. They’re putting on their pants every morning so they notice that their waist size has gone down. And they’re like oh, this is obviously working. I’m going to keep doing it. So that’s really where the motivation is.

 

DAN:

That’s awesome. One more question, and then [inaudible 0:14:53.5] – so Victoria, what about – welcome, Victoria – what about female hormones, cravings, mood swings or just wanting to munch? And that actually kind of leads – I was just going to ask this question. So Victoria’s question, and then who should not do intermittent fasting?

 

Is Intermittent Fasting Right for Everyone?

 

FUNG:

So the intermittent fasting is – there’s only a few people that shouldn’t. So remember that the human body is designed to store fat, store energy, and also when you don’t have anything to eat to pull it back out. It’s a natural system. Now you don’t want to do it if the risk of malnutrition is high. So children, for example, you don’t really want to fast. Pregnancy, breast-feeding, and if you’re underweight or concerned about malnutrition. So if you have a history of anorexia nervosa, then perhaps that’s not a great idea either. But it doesn’t lead to anorexia. So that’s one question that a lot of people have. Oh, aren’t you giving them an eating disorder? I’m like okay, we’ve treated like 1000 people, and nobody gets so hooked on it that they keep doing it. It’s not super fun, especially in our kind of North American food culture, it’s not fun for most people to do. I always have to ask them to do more, not try and pull them back. So you don’t develop anorexia from fasting, just like washing your hands doesn’t mean that you will develop obsessive-compulsive disorder. You don’t say don’t wash her hands; you might get OCD. It’s like okay, that’s crazy. So the anorexia, if you have a history of it, of course – it’s a psychiatric disorder – then yeah, maybe it’s not a great idea. But for everybody else it’s okay.

 

The one question that always comes up is should females do it. So of course there are those pregnancy, breast-feeding when you’re concerned because you’re losing nutrients. That baby is taking nutrients out of your body. You need to make sure you replace them. So fasting is too high a risk. And those periods of time are, they’re time-limited. You don’t have to fast during pregnancy. Just wait until you’re done. Wait until you’re finished breast-feeding. Then do it if you want to do it. Then it’s not such an issue. But people always worry that oh, it’s going to mess up my female hormones, it’s going to mess up my cycle. There’s a lot of things that happen, but if you look at fasting there’s very little effect on it. And if you look at the studies of fasting, the benefits are just as much. So the average weight loss for both men and women is roughly half a pound a day of fat. You actually lose more than that because some of that is water weight, and you will regain that when you start eating again. So if you, for example, fast for five days like you did, you might only expect to lose 2 ½ pounds of fat. That’s it. You’ll probably lose 5 pounds in total.

 

DAN:

I actually lost almost 10, 9.8. And I’m pretty lean. I started pretty lean, which surprised me, that amount.

 

FUNG:

Yeah, that’s a lot. But some of that usually comes back.

 

DAN:

Right. Oh yeah, the water [inaudible 0:17:45.3]. Yeah, gotcha.

 

FUNG:

The water comes back. So it kind of, almost 50% of that comes back. And people go it doesn’t work. And it’s like yeah, it did work. But again, you have to understand what you’re doing. But it doesn’t affect the sex hormones, estrogen and so on, much at all. So again, if you say that women can’t fast, let’s look at human history. So how about all those Muslims who do Ramadan. Are women exempted? No, not at all. Let’s look at Lent. Let’s look at the Jewish faith. Let’s look at the Greek Orthodox faith. Let’s look at the Mormon faith. Everybody has periods of fasting. Do they exempt women? No, not at all. Let’s look at the Buddhists. It’s the same everywhere you go. It’s because people are built this way, women, too. The weight loss is the same, and people do fine. That’s not to say that women won’t have problems, but men have problems, too. And it’s not that women have more problems. And again, we have the benefit of the experience. We’ve treated hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of women, hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of men. They do about the same. Actually women tend to do slightly better because they tend to be a little bit more compliant, I would say. But it’s variable. On average they’re about the same.

 

DAN:

That’s awesome. That’s a great clarification. Hopefully that helped. I don’t know if there’s one more question here. How long do you fast for?

 

FUNG:

You can do anything you like.

 

DAN:

Juanita.

 

Fasting is Flexible

 

FUNG:

Yeah, that’s – so the most popular sort of regimens is kind of a 16 hours of fasting, so 16/8. So keep in mind that the very word breakfast, it’s the meal that breaks your fast, which means that fasting is a part of everyday life, and that’s what people always forget. They think it’s something super weird. No, fasting is the absence of eating. What you want to do is keep feeding and fasting in balance. So on a regular basis – let’s go back to 1950s America. People ate three meals a day, breakfast, lunch, dinner. So you would eat at say 8:00 and then 6:00. So you have like 10 hours of feeding and 14 hours of fasting, and that’s just normal. That’s not something weird. That’s just normal. And if you tried to eat snacks your mom would say no, don’t eat an afterschool snack. You’ll ruin your dinner. After dinner snacks, no. Eating in the theaters, eating in front of the TV, no, no, no, no, no. All of that was – I grew up in the ‘70s. That was not done. Now you go to today, and it’s breakfast, you look at the school – breakfast, midmorning snack, lunch, afterschool snack, dinner, and then some kind of maybe you play soccer and in between the halves of soccer you get a little snack, some juice and cookies. And so six times a day, and nobody thinks that’s a bad thing. So what you do when you eat is you give your body the instruction to store fat. That’s what it does. When you eat you store some of it for use later on. If that use doesn’t ever come later on you just keep it in storage. So that’s just a part of normal day life. So that’s 14 hours. Now you want to lose weight, you simply extend that time. So you can go to 16 hours. So you eat in an eight-hour window. Or you go to 24 hours. So that’s eating one meal a day, so dinner to dinner, lunch to lunch, something like that.

 

Then you start going into the longer stuff, so 36 hours, for example. We tend to avoid the 48-hour fast because again, if you understand that day two is usually the hardest a day of fasting then you don’t want to go to day two and then quit.

 

DAN:

Yeah, great point.

 

FUNG:

You might as well go long. And the longer ones you do, five days, seven days, are not done as frequently. So you might do it every so often. So we usually tell people if you’re going to do like a seven-day fast then you want to take a few weeks off. You can do alternate day fasting, but don’t just – and make sure you get your nutrients. Make sure you eat nutritious food. Then you can do it again, and again, and again, as much as you want to lose the weight that you want to get the results that you want. So it’s really very flexible. So you can do anything you’d like. But the most popular would be the 16/8, kind of a 24-hour fast maybe two to three times a week, and then you get into the kind of five- to seven-day fast maybe once every couple of months.

 

Talk to your Doctor/Preventive Healthcare

 

DAN:

When I did the five-day I wasn’t really wanting to do it again right away. And you really get a sense of accomplishment when you do that. We’re running out of time, but obviously I’m not a physician, but you are. If you’re diabetic or if you’re on medications you probably want to talk with your doctor. You don’t want to change your medication thinking you’re feeling better, correct?

 

FUNG:

Yeah, exactly. And this is the thing that it’s important to talk to your doctor. Any change in diet will change your diabetic medications or some of your other medications, too. So some medications need to be taken with food, for example. Some of them like iron may cause an upset stomach. So you do want to talk to your physician about it. But this is where the opportunity really lies in taking these people who are very sick and just reversing all their disease. We have people, they come in with 20 years of type II diabetes and 80 units of insulin a day, and in a month and a half they’ve lost the weight, they’re off all of their medications, and they feel great. And we measure them, and they’re not classified as diabetic. So that’s where the opportunity really lies to really be able to help people. So on a systemic basis, I mean on an individual basis of course everybody is has that opportunity to make themselves healthier. But on a kind of systemic level there is an opportunity here, too, to put it into hospitals, to put it into clinics, really to help people kind of regain that help and not say that oh, I’m overweight; I need to take medications. No, you can get better by yourself completely naturally, 100% naturally for free. You don’t have to do anything special other than let your body burn off all that sugar.

 

DAN:

Do what it’s supposed to do.

 

FUNG:

Do what it’s supposed to do. You’re letting your body heal itself, and that’s amazing. That’s exactly what we should be doing in hospitals, in clinics, in diabetic clinics and so on, is helping these people. Say look, our goal is not to give you lots of medications. That’s not the point of being a doctor. That’s not the point of being a hospital. The point is to make you healthier. You come to me for help, and I should make you healthier, not give you medications; make you healthier. If it requires medication, sure I’ll give it to you, but that’s not the point. And that’s where we lose people. And getting back to our original point about the training of physicians and so on, that’s where we really have that big disconnect because you go to the doctor thinking you’re getting healthier, but really all he knows how to do is give you medication because that’s what we’re trained to do. We’re trained to give you surgery. We’re trained to give you medications. And we’re not really trained how to make you healthier from a nutrition, metabolic standpoint.

 

DAN:

And from a reimbursement side in the hospital you don’t get paid for prevention. Surgeons get paid to operate. And so I think until the incentives change things aren’t going to change much.

 

FUNG:

Yeah, you’re absolutely right. Certain places are different. So when you have a single-payer system such as in Britain or in Canada, for example, you would hope that some of these programs would be very, very useful because it’s a single-payer, so the government pays for everything. If it can give just advice, which is free, and the infrastructure is all there because the doctors are there, the dietitians are there, the clinics are there, if you can simply change that advice and prevent the surgery, that single-payer, the government, has saved a huge amount of money. So hopefully something like that would be – or HMOs, for example, where you have kind of a capitated system, again, you would hope that places like that would really see the benefit of keeping people healthy not just because it’s great business because you’re saving a lot of money because people are going to be healthier and happier that they’re with you and you take an interest in keeping them healthy to save the bottom line. Everybody wins. So nobody has to pay money for medications, and they don’t want to take medications anyway. And as a hospital or a health payer you win because surgery, dialysis, all this stuff is far more expensive than just giving advice. That’s free.

 

DAN:

Absolutely. So in our final moments what would be the one or two tips you would give people that are considering fasting, considering changing their diet?

 

Advice for Beginners

 

FUNG:

I think that one is to obviously get some good information. So there’s a lot of great information on the Internet, and honestly the technology has progressed so far in such a short period of time that information is available to everybody. So one of the really great websites, for example, is dietdoctor.com, and yes, there is a subscription side, but it’s only $9.00 a month, which is very little. But almost all of it is free. So all that free advice, you know, on low-carb diets, intermittent fasting, it’s all there. You can go out and get that information anywhere. So that’s great. This is spreading the information to the people. So make sure you get some good advice. I’m on that website, as well. So it’s a – you know, make sure you get a credible source. I mean I also wrote a book, The Complete Guide to Fasting, so again, you can benefit from some of these. So make sure you get the advice because there are problems that do come up with fasting, headaches, constipation. They’re not serious problems, but you can always make it easier.

 

And the other thing is to really give it a try. So again, don’t do it one time and say wow that was terrible because if you exercise one time you might twist your ankle and say that was terrible. That running – who told me to exercise? That’s terrible advice. No, you have to give it a couple weeks. Let your body get used to it, then see how you feel. Is it really that hard? Are you seeing results? Are you losing weight? Then that’s great. Everybody says well, you know, you’re losing weight but not good weight. It’s like no, when we see people with fasting, they lose their weight particularly around the waist, which is the most dangerous type of weight gain. So we see actually far more beneficial effects with the fasting than anybody – than just the overall weight loss, which is very terrific. And the studies really bear that out.

 

So one, get the information. It’s all free – not all, but it’s largely free. You’re not talking about hundreds of dollars. There’s a ton of good websites out there. And two, give it a try. See how you feel because you may feel great. You may feel terrible. If you feel terrible doing it and you’ve given it a try, then hey that’s not for you. That’s nobody’s fault. Everybody’s different.

 

DAN:

I love doing it, seriously. It’s to the point now where like eating is a hassle. I mean that sounds crazy, but going to work and not packing a lunch because I don’t go to work and then just eat. I bring what I want to eat. But it’s almost kind of a – it kind of frees it up.

 

FUNG:

I know. I do the same thing. So when I get very busy I may fast a lot more because I get an extra 45 minutes at lunch time that I otherwise wouldn’t get. I mean that’s terrific. If you added up for four days a week, for example, it’s like three hours. Week after week you’re getting three hours of extra work done.

 

DAN:

You could write a book. So how can – you have some great resources, and you have some books out there. How would people read your books, get a hold of you if they wanted to?

 

Resources for More Information from Dr. Fung

 

FUNG:

Yeah, so I have a website, as well, which is www.intensivedietarymanagement. So that one focuses mostly on science. Dietdoctor.com, I’m on that website as well, but it’s also a great low-carb resource for low-carb diets and so on. I wrote two books. One is called The Obesity Code, which is really all about the science of weight gain, what makes you gain weight because you really have to understand that to lose weight.

 

DAN:

Written for the non-physician?

 

FUNG:

Exactly. Anybody can read it. It’s explained very simply because everybody thinks it’s all about calories, but it’s actually not about calories at all. It’s really about hormones. And the other one is the complete guide to fasting, which is very much a patient-level book. I explained everything you really would want to know, the history of fasting, the problems that can come up.

 

DAN:

Is this co-written with Jimmy Moore?

 

FUNG:

This was co-written with Jimmy Moore, yeah.

 

DAN:

I listened to that.

 

FUNG:

Excellent.

 

DAN:

It was a great book. And I do audiobooks because it’s hard to read, but –

 

FUNG:

Yeah, I do that, too.

 

DAN:

– great, yeah. It was good.

 

FUNG:

Both of those are available, you know, at Amazon or any of the other ones. And then I’m finishing up the manuscript for The Diabetes Code, which is kind of a follow-up to The Obesity Code, which is talking specifically about type II diabetes. So it’s a lot more detailed with regards to if you have prediabetes or diabetes why you would want to do some of these sort of things.

 

DAN:

And now you see why he doesn’t eat in the morning for the productivity because you also have a full practice.

 

FUNG:

Exactly. I do mostly nephrology. So nephrology is still kind of what I trained 10, 11 years for, and I still enjoy a lot of that. But it’s not – they’re not different. One is at the end stage disease you have to treat those people, but really I don’t want to see those people get there. I want to treat them at the stage that they have type II diabetes or obesity, get rid of that disease. Then they will never develop the kidney disease, or the blindness, or the amputation because I’ve seen too many amputations, truthfully, in my life. I just don’t want to see it. It’s terrible. It’s a terrible disease. And you can’t – once it gets to that end stage you can’t do anything. It’s like if you never changed the oil in your car, then it breaks down, then you say I’m going to change the oil in my car.

 

DAN:

It’s too late.

 

FUNG:

It’s too late. It’s the same thing with nutrition. You have to treat it way, way, way earlier, when people are still relatively healthy compared to this level. And it can reverse, and that’s the beauty of it. We see that – I see that every day, the reversal of the obesity, the reversal of the type II diabetes, and it gives me tremendous hope that hey, this is a huge problem in the United States and Canada. But we just have to get the right information, and we can reverse it. Everybody seems to have given up and says oh, it’s irreversible. It’s chronic. It’s going to get worse. It’s like no, I think it’s going to get better because we just need to let people know what it is that they need to do, cutting out the refined carbohydrates, cutting out the sugar, particularly. I think that message has gotten out for the most part, and then adding maybe some intermittent fasting is just a great way to stay healthy. It’s not a treatment for illness. It’s not like oh, you’ve got kidney disease. Fast and you’ll get better. It’s a way to stay healthy. And that’s really where medicine should be, and that’s where medicine is not. Medicine is about treating illness, and that’s why doctors just don’t look into that, into how to stay healthy. But that really is a very traditional way. People have always done it. And guess what; it’s worked.

 

 

DAN:

That’s awesome. Well this has been an awesome interview. I appreciate your time, and thank you, everybody. I’ll get better with Facebook Live. Janet, thank you. Lisa, thank you – everybody watching. So we’re going to conclude the interview, and we also recorded this on audio so we’ll do a podcast and put it on Facebook and on YouTube probably. So thank you so much. Appreciate it. All right, so thank you so much, everybody.

5 Comments

  1. Terri F.

    Where it says, “read podcast transcript”, I clicked on it, but nothing comes up. Look forward to reading the interview…

    • Dan Perryman

      Terri, it usually takes 3-4 days to get transcript and show notes on site after I publish episode. Thank you for the comment.

  2. carol

    I will come back as I like reading rather than listening. cheers

  3. Linda

    I’m wondering if it’s safe to fast if you are hypoglycemic.I haven’t been able to find any information on that.

  4. Margaret Carlile

    I have been intermittent fasting 3 days a week I only eat 500 calories and I am starting to feel good I have lost some weight I need to be careful about what I need to eat the next day though I tend to eat a lot of junk other than that I love this diet or way of life I should say I can see myself staying on this the rest of my life and I’m 66 years old grandmother of nine and great-grandmother of one so anyone can do this give it a try