Complete Guide to Fasting Mimicking Diet
The concept of fasting and fasting mimicking diet (FMD) has gone mainstream in recent years. Fasting mimicking diet can help us lose weight, extend lifespan, and improve overall health. Indeed, fasting has been linked to a lower risk of diabetes, improved cardiovascular health, better brain function, weight loss, and more. I am not affiliated with a brand (meaning that I don’t get paid for sharing my opinion). But, like many things, it is an experiment for me. So, I collected as much data and recorded my experiments.
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Our bodies can survive without food for a long time. For instance, Ray Cronise water fasted for about 30 days. He also helped a famous magician Penn Jillette to lose 105 pounds. Unfortunately, both Ray and Pen were facing dangerous health conditions. So, a word of caution, stick to obtaining from food anywhere between 12 to 24 hours and yearly periodic fasting with food. I found it completely safe. As always, talk to your physician and address your common sense. Significantly, for ladies, prolonged fasting can interfere with our monthly cycles.
What is the Fasting Mimicking Diet (FMD)?
We consume small amounts of food during the Fasting Mimicking Diet (FMD). The research suggests that FMD provides all of the health benefits of fasting as we consume a particular diet.
Fast Mimicking Diet (FMD) was pioneered by cell biologist Valter Longo, Ph.D. FMD mimics the effects of fasting in the body while still consuming some food. Calorie restriction in such a fashion has been shown to provide the essential nutrients we need while also extending our lifespan and reducing the risk of age-related diseases.
The Fasting Mimicking Diet (FMD) Meal Plan
The Fast Mimicking Diet is a plant-based meal program providing about 1,150 calories on Day 1 and about 880 calories on Days 2 through 5. Unfortunately, our bodies are not recognizing that it is eating and therefore remaining in a fasting mode. In other words, it is fasting with food.
A box includes five days of soups, bars, snacks, teas, supplements, and a glycerol solution designed to protect lean muscle mass while keeping you in a fasted state (research 1 + 2). In addition, the box includes a combination of foods for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks.
A five-day ProLon Fasting Mimicking Diet kit includes:
- Nut bars are made from macadamia nut butter, honey, flax, almond meal, and coconut.
- Algal oil is a vegetarian-based supplement that provides dieters with 200 mg of omega-3 fatty acid DHA.
- Soup blends: A mix of flavored soups including Minestrone, Minestrone, quinoa, mushroom, and tomato soup.
- Herbal teas include spearmint, hibiscus, and lemon-spearmint tea.
- The dark chocolate crisp bar is made with cocoa powder, almonds, chocolate chips, and flax.
- Kale cracker with a mix of ingredients including flax seeds, nutritional yeast, kale, herbs, and pumpkin seeds.
- Olives are included as a high-fat snack (one pack is provided on day one, while two packs are provided on days two through five).
- NR-1 is a powdered vegetable supplement with a dose of vitamins and minerals.
- L-Drink is a glycerol-based energy drink that we take on days two through five (our body entered gluconeogenesis, meaning it begins to create energy from noncarbohydrate sources, such as fats).
- We should only consume what is in the meal kit.
- We should avoid consuming any other foods or beverages and stay hydrated.
- Also, the sixth day or transitional day isn’t included in the box, but we should eat lightly for the next 12 hours.
- We might feel nausea fatigue and avoid making plans or any high-intensity workouts.
My Five-day ProLon Fasting Mimicking Plan:
I don’t really consider it was fasting because the first day included more foods that I sometimes typically eat on normal days.
- Breakfast: The macadamia and cashew nuts bar.
- Plenty of Tea
- Lunch: Minestrone, olives (I skipped), and kale chips.
- Dinner: Tomato soup (I tossed), the same bar for breakfast, and a “chocolatish” crispy treat.
- Feeling: So, my first day was a piece of cake. Soups and kale chips were not to my taste. I prefer homemade meals. But, it was straightforward to eat the pre-made meals. It seems like too much food. I hate tomato soup, and olives were too salty.
The menu is the same, except for the added energy drink and no extra bar.
- Breakfast: The macadamia and cashew nuts bar and herbal tea.
- Lunch: Quinoa soup and five olives.
- Dinner: A cup of mushroom-like instant soup, five more olives, and a crisp cocoa treat. Again, the soup was not my favorite. So, I couldn’t eat it, and I had some celery sticks instead.
- Feeling: I missed cooking. And I missed normal meals. Not to mention, I crave salad and berries. However, I was not hungry. It’s just life without food is bland.
- The third day is practically the same as the second. Breakfast is tea, one nutbar—Tomato soup for lunchtime (I tossed again), followed by Minestrone.
- Feeling: Yak, I felt like vomiting. Good time to catch up on sleep.
- Even though the menu was pretty much the same as the previous day, the 4th day was one of the worst days. Provided that I had to get back to work and it was super cold, I’ve been super irritable. Trying to focus on breathing and having a perspective that my fast is nearly over helped—starting to feel sick from soups and over salty.
- Feeling: Irritated. Thanks for the audiobooks to keep my mind off kale chips.
- Breakfast: The bar
- Lunch and dinner: Two soups (that I tossed) in favor of plan mushrooms.
- Feeling: I got excited about real food. It was a great day to take a day off and rest.
The protocol recommends a transitional day towards normal food. Most importantly, to avoid bingeing. I made lentil soup. Over the next few days, I was very low energy and needed a rest.
My Experience with Fasting Mimicking Diet
Of course, I wish I had a few extra dollars to do blood work. However, you have to take me by my word on that one.
Firstly, the Fasting Mimicking Diet is simple with all the ingredients prepared and boxed, I took a break from cooking, buying food, and cleaning. Secondly, the Fast Mimicking Diet helped me appreciate real food, cooking, preparing, and enjoying my whole-foods, plant-based meals.
Fast Mimicking Diet Cons
- The box comes with a high price tag.
- You can’t do it if you are allergic to nuts.
- The foods are super salty, and I couldn’t eat most soups.
To conclude, I don’t think I’ll do the FMD ever again because 1) I fast naturally most of the days, 2) the diet is too pricey 3) I couldn’t eat a lot of provided food. However, it is a good gateway for a newbie to fasting and super easy to follow.
Listen to Valter Longo discussing the FMD:
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