89: The Intermittent Fasting Episode
Phone it's a WHO Ooh I'm so hungry. Hello Hello People. It's me Lisa. Lillian also known as hungry girl. I I am here. At Hungary land today. I am so excited because first of all. I don't have Mikey and Jamie with me today. That's not why I'm excited. I'm excited though because it is a very special episode. We are going to dive into a topic that all of you have been clamoring for information on and I am. I'm so excited about because I personally have been doing this but if you WANNA guess I'll give you two seconds okay. Times up. Intermittent fasting we are talking about intermittent fasting today and I have a special guest who is also a very good friend of mine. One of the most fun interesting entertaining and brilliant million people doctor. Melina Jan.. Polo's Molina. I how are you. I'm pretty good. How are you? I'm better now that I'm here at Hungary and it makes me happy be well. We're so happy to have you and for people who may or may not be familiar with you. I mean you've been all over TV. You're always on daytime television anytime I turn on my TV there you you are but you are a nutrition doctor. You're a physician nutrition specialist. Which means you're an MD So you could do all the things that a medical doctor actor does yet. You specialize in nutrition which is so different. Yeah it is and I was really. I've been doing this so I'm trained as an internist. I'm board board certified in internal medicine and very quickly. I realized that that wasn't the path to help for people putting people on drugs for Diabetes High Blood Pressure High Cholesterol and twenty years ago. I left internal medicine to focus exclusively on nutrition for disease treatment and prevention. And there's really really only a few hundred doctors like me in the United States and most of them are actually more on the inpatient side so the hospital side so I'm one of the very few that really. I have for twenty years. I've been preaching this food as medicine message and you know medicine is kind of starting to catch up bye bye think but I think the public is actually farther ahead in many cases than the medical community. So but I've been doing it for a while and It's and you're doing a great job. Thank you and I'm thankful that you're here because I was thinking. Who can I reach out to? That will know and give us the four one one on intermittent fasting and I. They have so many questions also the hungry girl facebook. What's chewing community? They sent in hundreds of questions. So we're going to jump right in great all right so people out there who don't know what intermittent fasting is or why they should consider doing it. Can we talk a little bit about that. Just like a quick overview of what it is and is it solely for weight loss or other other benefits as well. Yeah that's a great question and I mean interface. Intermittent fasting in and of itself is just extended periods of not eating eating. And so there's a lot of different types which we can go into. But it's you know fasting for a period of time more than just an overnight fast which most of us do anyways unless you wake up in the middle of the night with a good president of us so you know and it's something really you know I know it's it's in the news now and it's very timely but it's around when you think about it in different religions and cultures all over the world for thousands of years so this is nothing new and I think if anything I'd love your audience understand that this really is not a diet fad. I this is one of the most scientifically validated and there continues to be more more and more research looking at different aspects of intermittent fasting and while many people started for weight loss. There's actually a lot of research showing that it helps. UPS with diseases like diabetes and prediabetes. When done correctly it can help with heart health and it can even help with longevity some some of the scientific basis of restricting food for a period of time that type of stress that that causes on your body can actually stimulate your or basically your cells to regenerate themselves better so there's actually maybe some anti-aging benefits to it and and healing benefits? Let's from this time restricting your food and fasting for certain periods of time so scientifically yes. Weight loss's a great bonus but even if you don't don't lose weight by doing this research has shown that you can help improve. How your body response to insulin? Thereby decreasing your risk of diabetes. And there's there's many different things it's actually very exciting and we're really starting to see more of the obesity meeting that. I went to actually in Las Vegas ironically in November are they did an entire symposium on this so this is really starting to move to the forefront of not just obesity medicine but general nutrition medicine a- as well that's amazing. I love hearing that because I have so many questions relating to that so before we even jump into those. Is there a period of time. That is a minimum period period of time to not eat in order to experience those benefits. Yeah I think most of the research looks at a minimum of sixteen hour fasts as your are easing into it. You can certainly start with even a twelve hour fast. I think there is clinical benefit to that And that really. You know if you think about historically how we used to eat before electricity and different Technology and that sort of thing really you would have dinner and then and when the sunset you know there wasn't much to do when you didn't have seven thousand channels on TV or Netflix or digital so people went to sleep so you know a seven to seven Kevin Window for eating. The twelve hours would be physiological but most of the research shows that it's really that sixteen hour mark of not eating and that where you begin to see the clinical benefits. And that's actually what I do. I do the sixteen eight and I was wondering and people out there are wondering as well L. is this. I know you're saying there other benefits but is it more of a calorie game like people are asking if they just sort of restrict their calories. Because if I'm only eating for eight hours I know him eating. Probably three to five hundred fewer calories than I normally eat on average if I eat those same number of calories and I spread it out throughout the day longer. You're you're saying that you won't lose weight quickly. You don't I'm saying that you're not gonna get all the benefits of it it it it's a different. It's different physiology. So that's simple caloric reduction what we're doing with intermittent fasting is. We're actually changing your metabolism your really voting by not giving giving the body fuel during a certain period of time. You get hormonal changes. That actually have benefits that far. Go beyond calories. So it's it's not the same at all there is actually something that's happening with our physiology with you know cell turnover with things called Mida Qendra. These are the powerhouses of your cell that generate energy. It's shown that increases the creation of new Mitochondria. I feel so much more energy doing it. What do report that? It's funny because I personally can't do it. I know that's crazy. I've tried it. I just I I really. I'm not sure which is is really important. Point is that there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to the sort of thing so I choose to try to get my longevity benefits from exercise and stress management although I'm not very good at that but You know there was all these things happening in your body increases. Something called a tough Aji which is basically when your body is cleaning up. The birdie cells are the dead cells in your body that toxic wait. Fasting can actually improve a tough G. So there's there's all these things on a cellular and biochemical hammock level. That are probably a little bit more exciting to people like me but you benefit from those by doing it and you don't even realize like those big words so I've I've also heard and I have friends that do this and they're like. Oh why I have coffee but I put cream. I put creamer in the coffee and the sixty calorie rule and as long as you don't exceed sixty calories salaries then you're still considered in fasting mode. What are your thoughts on that you know? I haven't seen any data to support that m you know all the studies. I'm sure that calories sneak in there. I would say if you are going to do that. Probably what I would discourage you from having any sugary Greek calories so a little bit of cream that has more fat to it may be okay but The sugar which then will trigger release of incident to insulin can really offset any of the benefits so or at least interfere. You Know I. It's interesting because some people think you know if if you feel like your blood sugars dropping really hungry you WanNa grab like a gummy bear or something to give you instant energy but you're saying that with throw off the fast more so I'm saying that would probably when we look at you know hormones like insulin that are going to respond very quickly to blood. I mean that's what you're doing. You're getting your blood sugar. But you're also triggering a release of insulin so not that it completely d d You know defeats the purpose but if we're really trying to follow it for optimal benefits I think trying to limit That sort sort of thing. You know but I've never heard of a sixty calorie rule. That's probably something made a made up. It sounds really cute. But there's nothing magic about the sixty galleries as far as Zeina from a scientific standpoint and a lot of people also want to know like what if you're super hungry and you have headaches like does that just mean fasting is not for you or is that something that will go away after you do it for a few days. I never experienced those things so I don't I don't know but a lot of people are saying they feel very like they're gonNA faint and they're are really hungry so what should they do. Yeah I think it's but maybe they that's the type of person that should ease into it a little bit more and start get their body. You know the other thing. That is very very interesting. Is that You know there's something called metabolic flexibility. which is your body's ability to go between carbohydrates and fat as as a fuel source and maybe some of those people I mean? Most of us have ample supplies of fat that we should be able to drawn to keep our blood sugar figgers stable. And that's you know that to keep our energy levels up to fuel our body we have storage forms of of of carbs in our muscle. Everybody he does so you know I would say with somebody like that. I would try to ease into it a little bit more. You know. It's a complex question. I mean but then again I mean for me. I really have a hard time with it. I have tried it I do. I feel like I get very hypoglycemic and I don't like how. Oh that feels that my feel whether or not you know I skip breakfast or dinner and neither of those are good for me but but speaking of that you'll probably away. This may come up a little bit later but I think one of the biggest mistakes that I see with people who do intermittent fasting is choosing the wrong window and research is very clear that if your window is so for example if you do a twelve. PM To eight PM. That's worse for you than doing doing like a ten. Am to six PM. The earlier window is better. Because you're wait wait say that again. So you're saying you should not eat between twelve and eight it. It should your window of so for you. You have an eight hour window that you eat right. What time is that usually usually eleven to seven? Okay so yours adds no ten to six is better. That's what a lot of the research has been I think eleven to seven is more livable. The later it gets the worse it gets because what we know is that even if you're eating exactly the same thing we your body metabolize it different later in the day and in some cases I've seen with the time restricted feeding or intermittent fasting. They're all different names for the same thing with the later window. They actually have worse metabolic outcomes where their cholesterol and blood sugar get worse so the eating window is very important. So you can't save all of your calories and binge on a huge dinner and get the benefits. That's what I'm saying trusting. Yeah but but what if like your day starts later. So it's you know what I'm saying that doesn't rate mission and people have shown research has shown that shift workers who work the graveyard shift their metabolism they're more predisposed to get things like prediabetes and blood sugar abnormalities. So there's these gene that we have apparently called clock genes which dictate how your body responds to food at different times of the day and same amount of calories consumed consumed later in the day have a more negative effect on your overall metabolism. So even if people have that like so. This is good for me because I feel like even if my window is somedays twelve to eight or eleven to seven better off eating my larger meal way before seven APP like Louis or to absolutely and that's how I structure shirt with patients. Who Want to do that? you know and if you think about it does not make sense because what I try to do with my patients to get them to think about food as fuel a little bit. We have a lot of emotional attachment to to food but at the end of the day it really is fuel and during the day. You're really still fueling your body as you transition into night and different hormonal changes Stephen from the lack of light which is kind of screwed up in our culture to with the Blue Lights. I mean there's a lot of research on that we could. There's so much research search. I could go need. I don't need that much fuel to dateline once the the day is winding down like what. What's the fuel for right? It makes perfect sense. Okay so another question that people are asking is. Does your body get used to this like if you stop like. Is it better to do this. Only a a few days a week or three. Oh three to four days a week or do it every single day and if you stop will your body rebel well. That's a good question. I mean the good thing is is a lot of the research that's been done shows that doing this five days a week and eating somewhat normally two days a week is almost equivalent to doing it seven days a week so I would say from a lifestyle standpoint that to me. Seems more doable. Because that brings in especially if you do it correctly and do the earlier window. Yeah no so if you do the ten to six which is the most researched window ten. Am to six PM. restrictor eating too that timeframe You know the research has shown Sean that if you take a couple of days off that doesn't mean that you binge on those two days but that you just have a little bit more flexibility in terms of timing that that's also effective as as far as the rebound You know that's an interesting question. When I my gut feeling would be to say no you? Don't it's not because you're improving your metabolism so if anything if you got off track for a few days or a week you're on holiday or something. Your metabolism is functioning. Better those Mitochondria and all the hormones that are more balanced. They're actually probably GonNa make you respond to any deviation better. So it's I'm not going to be where you you know if anything you better prepared your body to get off track a little bit and then to get back on track so from a scientific standpoint point you're improving the way. Your metabolism looks works. It's looks it's not gonNA reverse itself. I mean you could do a lot of damage very quickly. I'M NOT GONNA say you're not going to gain weight but you know the mighty Andrea aren't gonNA immediately die off. Your insulin levels. Starts being sky high again. You know so I think The answers you're okay with that but it is helping out to know that just five days a week is equivalent so then it just whenever I'm talking to patients about it. That's what I love about. What you do is because you truly make it livable? For the person and people always think of Diet as a four letter word in. It's a short term. The thing that they're going to do to get to their goal and then they can go back to their old way of eating but what you the tools that you give them are for life and having something where you could do it you know five days a week. There's also different. You know that. Are they have five to intermittent fasting. You know there's all sorts of different. That's five days on two days off with that one's a little out there. Five hours off to I five hours. Yeah that's a that's a good one right now With five two is where you know. You really restrict calories to five hundred calories twice twice a week And that one so it's not as much of a timing thing but it's a type of intermittent fasting BS. You're cutting calories so significantly your your body perceives. It as fasting so but there's you know like you said they're sixteen eight. There's people that do twenty four hour fast once a week just to you know even just doing a show one time your body's going to benefit from it but wow they're just WANNA make sure people know what could work for them. I mean twenty four hours I think is is hard. I think men from my experience. I I know a lot of guys who can do that for for whatever reason how hard time thing I think I mean think about evolution evolution. WE'RE NOT GONNA get into heated discussion about that but you know if you look back at the hunter gatherers you know. It was often time the men that were going Out onto the planes for a day two days three days to bring game and the women were still you know tending the home maybe snacking on cuts in various till the husband came back so I think you know men. I definitely find that in my practice. There's a lot of men. Most surgeons eat one meal a day. You know there is so I think there is different physiologically that were designed particularly women who are of childbearing age. which maybe we're not anymore but we were not too long ago but So yeah it. It's I find it much harder for women even to cut carbs released significantly and that probably has to do with Europe tone and levels in our brain and things like that where we get a little more moody. Shall we say if we go to low on the carbs moody not me never a lot of people also also asking how if I do this. Do I not just go overboard when I do start to eat. I mean I have some tips there but before I even give mine. What do you think about? Thought like if you're overly hungry ravenous by the time you eat yet. No I think that's a really good point Because that you you know you can definitely undo undo some of the benefit if you binge on a cheesecake. You know. That's your first meal so I mean my my I would certainly have you know high high volume foods to start first of all drinking water as much as possible drinking teas throughout the day. You know making sure that you're really yeah well hydrated And then really You know you still have to make good choices you know and I think people in and this is probably something. I know that you do with everything that you make. I mean the Job Norma's like I love that concept and so because some at some point people are really going for that at physical feeling of fullness. They're just so hungry they WANNA feel stuffed. You're not gonna do that with nuts. You're going to have two thousand calories of nuts before it even takes up an volume volume in your stomach. So think about you know high volume foods to start off to activate those stretch receptors in your stomach that can signal fullness and also no slowing down a little bit so thing you know things that take a little bit longer to chew. I mean whatever tricks you have for you know in in in life in general for between meals applying those more regularly and and just being smart about it I mean. Don't go to a restaurant. That has your favorite FA Kasha Brad and be like again. Bring out the bay basket after I fasted for you know. Sixteen hours that'll be. That shouldn't be any problem. Yeah I mean for me I tend to go for. I like to go for something. That has about one hundred calories as my first foray back into chewing so I tend to go for like a nice orange or something that's juicy and satisfying and wait about fifteen minutes and then say I'm feeling it. You can actually feel your body sort of starting to metabolize or digest the food and it makes you feel satisfied So if you just slow down a little I agree that that's extremely helpful and for me I would do better. If I were doing it I would go for protein so for me if if I just didn't and maybe this is why I mean I think people have a sense for when they have blood sugar irregularities because I drop if I did that it would actually make me hungrier so I would go for like a and I love. I love the hundred calorie thing because it's just easy and and you know you don't have to think too much about it and over analyze I would probably probably do like a Greek yogurt to take the edge all the right and it's funny because I'm such a protein person I'd every single day I'd say I have at least four or five egg whites at some point throughout the day but when I break my fast I for whatever reason I don't go for that I it sometimes I do but I guess it just you have to just see how it makes you absolutely lutely and that's what you know everything is going towards personalized nutrition personalized medicine. And I think this is a great way of kind of figuring out what works for you and it's not going to be the same for everyone and you had mentioned that it's good for diabetes. Prevention possibly what about people who are already diabetic. Is it safe for them to go down this road. Yeah that's that's a great question. And of course they should check with their doctor. I especially if they're on diabetes medication because they could get into trouble with low blood sugar if they continue their same medical insulin regimen. But I mean this is actually a great option because it very quickly improves insulin resistance. That's that's one of the best things that intermittent fasting does and that's a problem in the majority of diabetics. But I have a very good friend. Actually who has an amazing podcast that you should be on because it's really fun happier in Hollywood You can But she is a type one diabetic. So she's actually an insulin dependent diabetic. An intermittent fasting has been an amazing for her and has allowed her to reduce her insulin levels and she feels amazing. She's lost weight she's got better energy So absolutely early. But you need to talk to your doctor first. especially if you're on medication insulin. or a pill for diabetes but this can be. That's actually a very very very interesting population for this because of the impact on insulin resistance and speaking of medication. What happens if you're on a pill that requires you to have a little food when you take the pill? How does that plan to intermittent fasting? I mean unless it's really time dependent. I would just move the timing of your pill to your first meal L.. I mean you know I unless it really needs to be done at a certain time and I'm not sure you know. The only Medicare like thyroid medication needs to be done on an empty stomach. So that one works perfect. You know blood pressure medication if you take it at eight. Am Verses Ten PM or or Ten am eleven am. I'm not sure that that would make a huge amount of difference but so we can just adjust their pill taking times when they can. Yeah but talk to your doctor talk to your doctor. Yeah all right. Exercise is a big one. Everyone's like how can I exercise. If I haven't eaten what if somebody wakes up in the morning they feel like they want to exercise. Do they have the energy. They need eight if they haven't had food in twelve fourteen hours you know. That's that's a really really great question and I'll be perfectly honest with you like for the majority of my career. I have discouraged people from exercising on an empty stomach because of exactly that reason I felt like it would not give them the energy to perform optimally. Only I still believe that to some extent I feel like I could never go to a spinning class on an empty stomach. I mean I would just hit the wall I would just bank But interestingly what research has shown I I saw a study recently That showed that exercising plus intermittent fasting actually improved showed even more benefits now. I'm not sure when that window when that exercise was done was it simply the combination or was it done fasting Again I think well since I recommend doing the window a little bit earlier you know I think it could work but if somebody many many people when they work out first thing in the morning Don't like to eat you know so I'm not pressuring them as much as I used to get something in their stomach. I still still do get a little bit concerned about maintaining muscle mass especially for people as they get older and it's harder to build muscle because if you know the body's not that smart it would be great if we exercised on an empty stomach in the body new only to go to fat and never to go to Mussawi if only but it's not quite that smart soda water help like if someone has ah a lot of water and they're very hydrated before they exercise it possibly hope absolutely it took but still you know it. It's hard to answer that question because it all depends pens on what their meals are made of. So if they're on a low carb diet for example and they don't have a lot of the storage form of Blood Glucose coast of blood. Sugar you know. They might be somebody who would bonk a little bit more. But then you know the body does seem to when I said that metabolic flexibility like it may a over time actually help you use fat for fuel better during a workout to increase that oxidation burning fat for fuel. So you know I think the jury is still out on that But I I was impressed to see. You certainly shouldn't stop exercising if you're doing you know because they have complementary benefits and they really seem to work synergistically the idea of on an empty stomach or not you know. That's a little bit more. I don't think science has answered that question yet. Okay and is there anything anything else that you want to add about. Intermittent fasting anything. You think. We haven't covered now. I mean I I think like you said I think it's important. There's a lot of different ways of doing it. There's there's No one hundred percent right way. There are some wrong ways. I mean I think if you like I said I think one of the most important things is that I hope people listening to his to shift the window earlier and you know what I remember in the old days. That was a big thing like. Don't eat after seven. The kitchen is closed after seven. That's basically what we're talking about because if you don't eat after seven you're already doing a twelve hour fast to start with so I mean I mean some of this just makes good sense and it you know i. It's it's what we've kind of been saying for a long time. It's just bringing a little bit more science and maybe stretching ching that window a little bit I mean you know and then just using it as A. It doesn't have to be hard and fast. I think you not being so hard on yourself and not having as as an excuse to eat poorly during whatever window you define. I mean it gives you a little bit more flexibility but you know so. Does everything that you recommend people like your your. Your plan is not about deprivation. You know it's about join your is and I love the idea of eating a larger meal before the end of your eating window have have a back into it and then just have something light towards the end of that. I'm definitely going to do more of that. My pleasure and Molina. Where can people find? You like people. Were probably going to be clamoring to hear more from you. Where where are you Well I write down the street from US I in my office is in Valley village. I mean my website site doctor. MELINA DOT COM. I'm not as active as you are with it. I do busy. You Know I. I love this stuff. I probably should make an effort to talk about it. More for You Know My. I've written four books so my last one the I'm working on a new one now but it's going to be a well because I'm too busy but the last one spice up slimmed-down is I'm kind of obsessed with the healing power of spices and herbs. And I'm working on a new one. That's looking at spices and longevity so instead of making everything about wait it's more about health and optima living and everything but With the old book which you contributed a recipe. Thank you so much. But a hundred percent of the profits from that book go due to an organization called action against hunger which helps support childhood malnutrition across the world and to date. I've been able to write them. Sixty five thousand dollars in checks from the sale of that book. What is the name of ice up slimmed down and and they can buy that on Amazon Amazon? And that's when I think you gave me two recipes so wait if you add. Tell me what is the best and number one spice that can help you live longer. I can be the best for you. What is it Oh my God I mean I have to say turmeric but you know it's Ah but it's just because it has the most data I mean honestly? I was hoping you'd say cinnamon cinnamon is A. Can I get five. Can you give me your. Yes Cinnamon Kumon Oregano Tomb. Rick and Ginger Ginger time time maybe time for the brain. Let's allowed go with time. Great there you go awesome. We're out of time now. We're we're out of time but you can get some time in your spice cabinet and throw it on. Whatever you're making anyway? Thank you you so much. This has been so informative and so helpful. I think people are going to be so excited. We're going to put some information up on our show page. You can find that at hungry dash girl dot com slash podcast and you can check us out at hungry. DASH DOT COM and sign up for our daily e mails and tune into the podcast every week and of course subscribe to it. We love when you do that. If you have any questions. You can always text Mikey at eight. Oh five three eight zero eight hundred seven five and we will of course be back next week with the podcast. We've got a target hall with lots and lots of great things so thank you again. Melina for being here love. You always great to see you. I am Lisa Lillian. Also known as hungry girl till next time. Chew the right thing.