As I mentioned in a previous post, I undertook a 5 day PSMF, largely exploring the feasibility of such a plan, with the intent of undertaking a second PSMF later this year with blood tests and DXAscan to see if the results on biomarkers of health span are similar to that of a fasting mimicking diet.
Oh, and ripped abs, yo.
It was surprisingly easy. I mean, not a walk in the park, but not a slog. Here are my key insights:
- Whole foods were SO helpful: Previous PSMF attempts were mostly protein shakes and supplements. This was 1.5-2lbs of ground chicken and 1lb of roasted broccoli per day eaten in one mean. That’s a giant bowl and my stomach was very full.
- Spices, salsas, and mustard are king: Zero calorie, tons of flavor, and I could cycle them day by day to make the bowl more interesting.
- Exogenous ketone were useful, but not required: One could argue that they made the “insulin/ketone ratio” more favorable, but they were not required to stave off hunger. I also knew that I was in deep ketosis on day 3 when adding exogenous ketones did not improve cognition to any noticeable degree.
- Use the damn fish oil: I didn’t any my lips started getting really, really chapped by day 5. This cleared up within 48 hours of normal fat consumptions. Add those essential fats!
- Exercise wasn’t hard: Don’t run 7 miles, but shorter duration stuff should be fine. I trained my strength workout on day 1 and on day 4 I did treadmill intervals. Added 5 grams of glucose 10 minutes prior to bring my blood sugar up, which is largely a way to trick the central governor. Did all the planned intervals at the speed I wanted to.
- Time-restricted feeding is king: At no point was I ravenous. I just ate my giant meal and worked throughout the day. Way better than 3 bites of food throughout the day.
- It worked: I lost 6 pounds and kept 5 off. Went back to my “High Performance Peasant” diet without issue after a day of refeeding on roots, tubers, fruits, and berries.
This was a feasibility test. The next time I do this I’ll get before and after blood work and Dexa scan to determine if it results in positive changes in markers of longevity like that of a fasting mimicking diet without the potential lean mass loss. I suspect it will but time will tell!