What’s all the buzz about this cell regenerative diet called Prolon?

Let me ask you this…

Have you been having trouble with your blood sugar? Has it been hard to lose the extra few pounds even though you’ve been doing a good job with cutting out processed foods and excess carbs, plus you’ve been exercising regularly? Is your belly fat impossible to get rid of? Do you want soft ‘younger looking’ skin? Have you been toying with different kinds of intermittent fasting diets and just don’t know what’s what?

The Fasting Mimicking Diet will address these concerns with positive outcomes, as studied by Valter Long, PhD. It’s all shared in his book Longevity Diet which is a great read. He started off with researching the diets and lifestyles from the blue zone locations, where they have the highest numbers of centurions. One of the components he finds out is that these people undergo some kind of fast or fasting mimicking diet.

Since then he’s done extensive research on The Fasting Mimicking Diet which has the following benefits found in mice:
– shrunk tumor size in half
– decreased bone density drop
– decreased skin inflammatory disorder
– decreased weight without losing muscle mass ( a big problem for other fasting diets)
– improved cognition

He’s since found similarly compelling results with humans.  I tried it myself 1 month ago with 20 other clinicians and have found amazingly positive results. Since then I decide to do it again, so I want to share with you my 5 day experience here with you. But first, let’s learn more about fasting.  Don’t forget to check out my 5 day personal experience with 5 days of fasting mimicking diet in the bottom of this article. 

First, what is fasting?

Fasting is avoiding food and calories, so that your body can switch from burning glucose for energy to burning fatty acids and ketones, an alternative source to energy in our body.  When we make ketone bodies, that’s when we are in a fasting state.

With that said, research points to the following three benefits of fasting:

  • Weight control and weight loss
    • These factors are accomplished because you are forcing your body into a caloric deficiency. You know the saying, “calories in and calories out”? One of the most basic understandings of weight loss is to burn more calories than you consume. This is true in many cases, however sometimes underlying health imbalances and diseases are the root cause for an individual having issues with weight loss. So as always, be sure you are working closely with your functional medicine practitioner or healthcare professional of choice to get tailored support to fit your needs.
    • Beyond the weight loss, many fasts may also improve cholesterol, triglyceride levels, blood pressure, inflammation, and even insulin resistance.
  • Activating biological fasting
    • When we say “biological fasting” we are talking about the way that your body is forced into survival mode because no external nourishment is available. Think about your evolutionary ancestors in the middle of winter or drought. There was no food. This was before fasting was on the cover of Cosmo and it wasn’t practiced for any health benefit. It was simply a reality of the times.
  • Triggering cellular optimization and cellular rejuvenation
    • When your body is stressed for a long enough duration of time, deeper phases of survival mode can be triggered. This is when your body starts working on cellular optimization and rejuvenation. In addition the body goes into autophagy.

There’s many types of fasts.

The many different fasts vary in terms of protocols, procedures, and even benefits. Since all fasts include caloric weight loss- you can expect weight loss on basically any fast. The question is if that weight will actually stay off once you complete the fast. If weight loss is your main goal, be sure to discuss this with your healthcare professional. Many fasts only trigger the first phase of fasting benefits as discussed above.

The ProLon mimicking fast however, is proven to allow you to enter all three fasting phases while still eating a uniquely crafted plant based diet. This fast was created by Professor Valter Longo, Director of the Longevity Institute at the University of Southern California.  The ProLon 5-Day Fasting Mimicking Diet is known to help you to experience the significant health, wellness, and longevity benefits of a full 5-day fast while still eating some foods.

Look at this chart below to compare popular fasts: What are different types of Fasting?

Time Restricted Fasting

  • Fasting during specific hours, of using a specific time pattern
  • For Example: 12 hour fasting (Eat between 8am  to 8 pm)
  • Or 16:8  16 hour fasting and 8 hour feeding.  (noon  to 8pm)  2 times a week
  • Can impact weight, blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood glucose
  • But not good to miss breakfast regularly, and long term can cause increase gallstone.
  • These has not been shown to trigger autophagy and apoptosis (that helps unhealthy cells die or be removed), or stem cell based regenerations

Intermittent Fasting

  • Extended periods of time like 16-48 hours with very little or no energy intake followed by intervals of normal eating
  • For example:  Alternate Day Fasting or 5:2 Diet, Eating normal 5 days, and 2 days with 60-70% calorie restriction (around 500 calories) on alternative days or 2 consecutive days
  • Follow continuously every week
  • Can impact weight, blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood glucose
  • These has not been shown to trigger autophagy and apoptosis (that helps unhealthy cells die or be removed), or stem cell based regenerations

Periodic Fasting

  • 46-100% calorie restriction for duration of your periodic fast
  • Total usually less than 5 days per month
  • 5 days per month for 3 consecutive months

Fasting Mimicking Diet

  • 5 days of plant based food designed to mimic the benefits of fasting per month
  • 800-1100 calories per day
  • Designed to promote healthy longevity by
    • switching all cell to a protected anti-aging mode
    • promoting autophagy (‘self-eating’ parts of the cell) and replacing damaged cell components with newly generated functional ones.
    • Killing damaged cells in many organs and systems and replace them with new healthy ones
    • Shifting the body into an abdominal/ visceral fat-burning mode, which continues after returning to a normal diet.
  • A good analogy is to think of the body as an old wood-burning steam locomotive low on wood.  To reach the next fueling station, the fireman can start burning the train’s oldest and most damaged wooden seats and walls, making the train lighter when generating the steam needed to keep it going Just as the seas can be rebuilt once the train reaches the fueling station the streamlined cells, systems, and organs can be rebuilt by activating stem cells.

So, ProlonFMD is a product that uses that model and made a gluten free, dairy free, plant based all in one food kit. I’m doing it again as a 2nd time after last month, and I want to share with you my experience.

Let’s explore these phases of fasting a bit deeper:

  • Fasting Phase 1: Day 1-2
    • Your body goes into survival mode about 24-30 hours after your last meal. Your body will then start tapping into the glycogen reserves in your muscles (while generating new liver glucose) and it will also start using your fat reserves.
  • Fasting Phase 2: Day 3-4
    • When your body goes two days without food, you enter this second stage of survival mode. Autophagy is triggered on day two or three.
    • Dr Ananya Mandal describes this process in the following way:
      • “The word autophagy is derived from Greek words “auto” meaning self and “phagy” meaning eating. Autophagy is a normal physiological process in the body that deals with destruction of cells in the body. It maintains homeostasis or normal functioning by protein degradation and turnover of the destroyed cell organelles for new cell formation. During cellular stress the process of Autophagy is upscaled and increased. Cellular stress is caused when there is deprivation of nutrients and/or growth factors.”
  • Fasting Phase 3: Day 5
    • When your body goes four days without food, things are getting serious. Your body (rightfully so) is worried about dying. At this point your body has already consumed your fat reserves (aka stored energy) and improved your cellular function, however your fast is still continuing. So what might your body do under this major stress?
      • Your body eliminates old, inefficient, and damaged cells.
      • Your body increases the number of stem cells that are circulating in order to create tissue that is strong, new, and young.
      • This final fasting stage has been proven to assist with the biological aging of the body’s internal clock.
      • Some studies in mice have shown this process to prevent or even reverse some diseases.

When done under professional guidance, going through all these three phases of fasting may have incredible health benefits for your body. You may even come out stronger, leaner, biologically younger, and healthier on the other side. This again is due to the process of autophagy and stem cell-based regeneration.

What is the ProLon 5-Day Fasting Mimicking Diet?

As displayed in the chart above, The ProLon 5-Day Fasting Mimicking Diet helps your body to reach deeper benefits beyond just weight loss. It is also beneficial because you are still eating a little bit each day which can help to protect your body from some of the negative and dangerous associations that occur when not eating.

This is completed with five days of consecutive fasting while also eating the specific pre-formulated ProLon foods. These will help your body to maintain lean body mass. Research has shown fasting mimicking diets to have many positive impacts including those listed in this chart:

Hers’s My Journal On The Fasting Mimicking Diet

Day 1: Click Here To Watch My Video 

  • First, I collected some data yesterday:  pre-weight, visceral fat, body fat and muscle %, and also general sense of sleep and wellbeing.
  • The kit came with a Meal Program card, so it’s easy to follow the plan.
  • I had tasty nutty food bar and tea in the morning.  I didn’t feel hungry at all throughout the day
  • The crackers and olives taste really good. (My kids took a couple.)
  • The kit came with an algae oil and a multivitamin.
  • Today, I am priming my body to transition into a fasting state and begin cellular optimization.

Day 2: Click Here To Watch My Video

  • My body is switching to fat burning. Cellular recycling and clean up (autophag) begins!
  • I am enjoying the taste of all my food. Olives and Tomato soups are my favorites.
  • The L-drink is tasty especially after I added the hibiscus tea to the water.
  • Going from 1100 calories to 800 calories, some other group members shared they noticed the difference in terms of feeling a bit tired. I feel less this time compared to the first time I did Prolon a month ago. 
  • I consciously slowed down my day so I don’t feel as stressed.
  • I went to bed feeling hungry, but slept for 8 hours.

 Day 3: Click Here To Watch My Video

  • Today many people will reach full ketosis.
  • Hump day, but I am feeling more energy
  • I had a moment of feeling tired from low calories during the day, but that went away after an hour. I drank more water as a result.
  • amazing to have all this extra time when I don’t have to think about food or food prep!

Day 4: Click Here To Watch My Video

  • I woke up with high energy, and I didn’t think about food at all today.
  • The hunger feeling from day 1 and 2 is all gone, feel like I can fast for a lot longer.
  • I do miss my veggies and broths, so I can imagine creating a similar diet by cooking my own in the future.
  • i feel my  stem cells regenerating right now!! ( theoretically)

Day 5: Click Here To Watch My Video

  • Last Day. Yay! I woke up feeling great. Still enjoy the food immensely.  Today I get the kale crackers again, which I liked the most, since it’s salty.
  • My waist has thinned significantly, no bloating.  Had a busy day at work and managing it wrll.
  • My body is being rejuvenated from within and my skin has been extra clear. 

Final results:

  • I’ve lost 3% body fat, of those 2% visceral fat and 4 pounds in total.  I eat smaller meals since I’m not as hungry in between the 2 Prolon fasts.  And I also did maintain my muscle mass. A success!

ProLon is different than other fasts:

ProLon has been shown to give you many of the benefits of fasting while reducing the potential problems that come with not eating. Again, these benefits include improvement of age-related biomarkers due to the cellular optimization and stem cell regeneration. Overall, it is a fasting mimicking diet, which means you will still be eating food during these five days. The food is small, specifically designed meals, and low-calorie. The idea is that you complete ProLon for five days every 3-4 months for the goals of improving your person’s metabolic health and improving your age related biomarkers. However, if you are on insulin, are pregnant or have certain conditions listed here (onnalomd.com/prolon) you would not be a good candidate or need to check with a health professional first. 

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References:

[i] Wei, M., Longo, V., et. al. Fasting-mimicking diet and markers/risk factors for aging, diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. Science Translational Medicine 15 Feb 2017: Vol. 9, Issue 377.

[i] Brandhorst, S., Choi, Y., et al. A Periodic Diet that Mimics Fasting Promotes Multi-System Regeneration, Enhanced Cognitive Performance, and Healthspan. Cell Metabolism 22, 86–99 July 7, 2015.

[i] Wan, R., M., Mattson, M.P., et. al. Cardioprotective effect of intermittent fasting is associated with an elevation of adiponectin levels in rats. J. Nutr. Biochem. 2010. 21, 413–417.

[ii] Trepanowski, JF, et. al. Effect of Alternate-Day Fasting on Weight Loss, Weight Maintenance, and Cardioprotection Among Metabolically Healthy Obese Adults: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Intern Med. 2017 Jul 1;177(7):930-938.

[iii] Johnson, J.B., Mattson, M.P., et. al. Alternate day calorie restriction improves clinical findings and reduces markers of oxidative stress and inflammation in overweight adults with moderate asthma. Free Radic. Biol. Med. 2007. 42, 665–674

In addition, this blog was written in large part thanks to the ProLon Ebook- “Not So Fast.”

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