May Alternate Day Fasting Update

The biggest news of May is that my gums have finally stopped bleeding. For the past 3-years, every time I brushed my teeth, a small amount of blood would be mixed in with the toothpaste when I spit it out. After 6-months of alternate day fasting, I am happy to say that this no longer happens! This, I believe, is the last health-related issue I had to cure. Everything that could be fixed has now been fixed. Actually, I did go to the dermatologist for a couple of longstanding (since the age of thirteen) skin issues I had that I was waiting to see if alternate day fasting would cure, but as one of them was slowly spreading with time (itchy psoriasis on my shins), I thought it best to see a dermatologist, and I’m very happy that I did as it is now completely under control. I had read that longer fasts of 2-weeks plus in length are known to cure various skin conditions and I was hoping to try one at some point, but I’m presently not ready to try anything of that length, and consequently decided to see a dermatologist, instead. However, as my psoriasis has historically tended to flare up every winter, I most likely will have another chance to try a longer fast as a permanent cure. But if my psoriasis doesn’t come back, after suffering from it for the past 33-years, that would be pretty incredible, too. Time will tell.

May was another month where I consumed massive amounts of food on my feeding days. I find it amazing myself that I can go with absolutely no food one day without any problem, and then the very next day consume as much food as I do. It’s as if my stomach has two modes: off and full-throttle on. There is no in-between. Obviously, alternate day fasting does not shrink your stomach or your appetite. And it definitely doesn’t kill your sweet tooth, either. Whilst I have no problem refraining from sweets on fasting days, which in itself is a minor victory, on feeding days, I still feel like having dessert twice a day, and I do. But if you set me loose in an all-you-can-eat buffet, I would gladly eat every single dessert offered, and the ones I liked, probably multiple times.

My scale weight hasn’t really changed much. I’m bouncing around between 61kg and 63kg, depending on whether I’m fasting or feeding. I guess it might be possible to say that I’ve lost .5kg over the past 2-months, but until I get a few readings under 61kg, I’m hesitant to. Having said that, I do think that I’ve lost some fat and put on some more muscle, evidenced by the fact that I can now do 17 chin-ups and 80 consecutive push-ups, up from 16 and 70 the previous month. Also, for the first time in my life, I can now perform an L-sit, even if it’s only for 15-seconds. I feel that I’ve lost a little bit of fat around my chest and my waist has gotten slightly smaller, too, judging by the fit of my pants. I have gotten a few 16% body fat readings on my Omron KaradaScan, which is down from 17%, but this number fluctuates quite a bit, so once again, I’m hesitant to declare a definite decrease. In the end, I think the mirror is the best way to judge progress at this point, and from that perspective, I definitely think I’m in better shape than I was a month ago.

Given that my weight has almost flatlined for the past two months, from here on out I don’t realistically expect to see rapid changes. One reason to continue with alternate day fasting, though, is to test whether or not it is possible to put on muscle while losing weight. The prevalent thinking is that you need to bulk and then cut in order to put on muscle because muscle can’t be put on with a caloric deficit. I should note that one reason why I consume as much food as I do on feeding days is because I am making a conscious effort to try to maintain, and if possible, even gain muscle, which means consuming a decent amount of protein on my feeding days to cover for my fasting days. Now that I’m no longer rapidly losing weight, I’m very curious to see where the next 6-months takes me in terms of muscle mass. What I’m presently hoping for is a very slow but steady reduction in my body fat percentage over the next 6-months, most likely at the rate of 1% every 2-months. At this point in time, this is the only real reason left to continue with alternate day fasting. If I stop seeing any noticeable changes in my physique over time, I will need to reassess the situation. Most likely, I would initially switch to fasting 3-days a week and see if I can maintain my weight that way.

 

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