Dry Fast Journal

20130319-180600.jpgToday I started on my dry fasting exeriment. My aim is to go 240 hours, or 10 days, without food or water. I should reach a state of ketosis in about 2 days, and with any luck I’ll starve my little mutants to death. My body may also look upon the 1.5-2kg of cancer cells as the ideal source of fuel and start digesting them. (I still can’t believe that I am doing this btw.)

Day 0

Starting Weight: 65.2kg
Blood Pressure: 141/96
Heart Rate: 89

3:09 – Its been just three hours and I am already thirsty. This does not bode well.

Day 1

Weight: 63.3kg
Blood Pressure: 148/97
Heart Rate: 74

So far so good. Feeling a little thirsty, somewhat hungry, but nothing I can’t cope with. Overall feeling quite well. Lost a fair bit of weight already, which I assume is mostly due to fluid loss. One advantage is not having to prepare food and I thus find myself with a lot of extra time.

Day 2

Weight: 61.5kg
Blood Pressure: 158/92
Heart Rate: 61

Surprisingly no extreme feelings of hunger or thirst. My BP is up, but this is most likely due to the fact that I am on medication for hypertension and have not taken it last 2 days. I definitely have less energy, but overall am feeling good. I had virtually no nausea for the last two days, which is another bonus. I am a little concerned with the rapid weight loss however. I have hoped to not fall below 58kg and at this rate that may not be possible.

The second half of the day hit me like a ton of bricks. I lost most of my energy and spent the rest of the day in bed. My glucose stores are depleted it seems and I should be going into ketosis soon.

Day 3

Weight: 59.9 kg
Blood Pressure: 132/93
Heart Rate: 77

I woke up feeling quite well. I have much more energy than the day before, so I assume that my metabolism has switched to burning ketone bodies now. My blood pressure has stabilized, and my heart rate is fine. Heart rate is the one to watch as this will rapidly increase with the level of dehydration.

Again no sign of my otherwise ever present nausea. I feel a little hungry, my mouth is starting to get dry, but I am not experiencing any major impulses to eat or drink. Visualising eating three meals a day and going through the motions of swallowing, seems to be helping.

I am noticing a few changes. Firstly the quality of my skin has improved. I had a problem with acne on my back courtesy of chemo. These are healing very quickly now and no new ones are appearing. Secondly when ever I took a very deep breath or pushed on my liver I felt a dull pain at my tumour sites. I don’t feel this anymore. Whether this is a good, or a bad sign, I don’t know.

My major concern is the continuing rapid weight loss. Another 1.6kg down. I am hoping it will settle down now, as there is not much more water that I can lose and I should not be burning more than 0.5kg of fat and muscle per day.

Day 4

Weight: 58.9 kg
Blood Pressure: 137/95
Heart Rate: 73

I have almost ended day four and about to start on day five. According to wikipeadia one can survive 3-5 days without water. This means that I should be dead or dying right about now. Well I hate to contradict the wikipeadia authors, but I am not dead and I don’t really feel like I am dying either.

I feel reasonably well, and had no nausea again for most of the day. It came back in the evening, but it was very mild compared to my usual.

I noticed that my feet are cold most of the time now and the only way to warm them up is to soak them in hot water. I guess that means that the dehydration has reduced the blood volume and the body is pulling blood away from the extremities in order to better protect vital organs.

I had some mild abdominal cramps in the morning for the first time too.

I spent over half the day in bed and I am having trouble sleeping. I slept for only 4 hours. My qigong master did however mention that during the fast I will require less sleep. I guess he was right.

It is surprisingly easy to stick to the fast, even though I am surrounded by family going through their regular routine of 3 meals a day with snacks in between. I expected the fast to be much harder.

Looking in the mirror, I don’t look great. I lost a lot of weight now and my face looks rather sunken. The weight loss concerns me the most. It looks like my body started to burn muscle tissue even though I still have some fat reserves left. Not overly happy about this as it took 5 months of hard work in the gym to regain my muscles after my spell of cachexia 5 months ago. I was hoping to not fall below 58kg, but this does not appear likely. My absolute minimum for my height is 55kg. I am happy to continue up to that point, but not lower. This gives me about a 4 kg reserve left.

Day 5

Weight: 58.1 kg
Blood Pressure: 128/79
Heart Rate: 62

This has been the worst day so far and I was seriously thinking about stopping at this point. I had very little energy, was feeling very tired and spent most of the afternoon in bed not being able to do anything. (I should probably clarify that I started fasting at 3pm, so my fasting days are 3pm to 3pm the following day.)

I had a strange chemical taste in my mouth for several hours in the evening. I believe that this is due to the chemo drugs that accumulated in my fat tissue, which now being burned, is releasing these toxins. I also felt a mild nausea in the evening.

I decided to continue with my fast as my brain is still sharp. Master Tao mentioned that I should stop the fast once my mind starts to become dull. If anything my mind was working overtime and I had to meditate before sleep as had no hope of actually going to sleep otherwise. Even the meditation proved hard and took an hour to finally settle my mind

In the morning I woke refreshed and I am once again feeling quite well, so will be continuing.

A new symptom has surfaced. I now get short dull pains in my liver from time to time. These usually last a second or two then stop. I assume this means that something is happening. Hopefully my little mutants are having a hard time and are dying.

I decided to continue my Iscador injections during my fast. I am still on low dose and I have not had a reaction to the injections prior to my fast. During the fast however, I noticed that the injection sites are sore for several days afterward and the skin around them are a little red. This shows an immune reaction taking place. It looks like my immune system is indeed stronger when the body does not need to spend energy on digestion. Hopefully another good sign.

I lost the least amount of weight so hopefully my weight loss is slowing now. Blood pressure is dropping due to dehydration. Heart rate is still good however.

Day 6

Weight: 57.7
Blood Pressure: 141/86
Heart Rate: 61

Pretty much same as yesterday. Feeling relatively ok till about mid afternoon, then seem to run out of energy and feel very tired for the rest of the day.

Blood pressure increased, which was unexpected, heart rate still fine and lost only 0.4kg since yesterday. It looks like I am not losing as much fluids now, which would account for the relatively minor weight loss.

Delirium has not set in yet (as far as I know), so I will continue. Just 4 more days to go.

Day 7

Weight: 57.0 kg
Blood Pressure: 118/89
Heart Rate: 67

I did some gardening, which probably explains the greater weight loss today, but I felt like I had the energy today and it needed doing. However as before, my energy evaporated by early afternoon and I felt weak and tired the rest of the day.

My blood pressure is now quite low compared to my usual. This is a typical body response to dehydration, but my heart rate is still normal.

I took my body temperature and it is running lower than normal at 36.3 degrees Celsius. It should be at or slightly above 36.6. I suspect that this is another way that the body deals with starvation. The reduced core temperature means the body needs to burn less energy. I took a long warm bath to get it up and to warm my ever cold legs. I am not sure if this was a good idea as I read in one article that the skin can absorb 18g of water per hour through osmosis. In another article it however mentioned that only the upper layer of the skin absorbs water and it does not get into the body. This is the reason why your skin goes wrinkly in water, and returns back to normal after the extra water evaporates. Either way, I think 50ml of water should not make a difference, even if it was absorbed.

The strange chemical taste in my mouth continues and has increased in the evening to a point where I started to feel sick from it. It feels like its 5-FU as I recall similar taste on both folfix or folfiri i think, however oxaliplatin makes more sense as this accumulates in fat tissue and can linger in the body for many years. I started to rinse my mouth with water and spit out the saliva. This helped a great deal. I probably ingested some water by doing this, but I figure that I spat out just as much saliva to compensate.

I expected my level of urination to be greatly reduced by now, but this does not appear to be the case. My urine us quite yellow, which is still ok. If it turns brown, this would be a cause for concern as at that point kidney damage becomes a real possibility.

Standing up I am now noticing pins and needles in my feet, much like the oxaliplatin induced neuropathy, however nothing in my fingers, so I don’t think its due to oxaliplatin. Probably just another side effect of dehydration and the reduced circulation in the extremities. I also feel quite dizzy for a few moments and I stumble a bit just after standing up. This I am sure is due to the low blood pressure.

I am still feeling fine, no sign of elevated heart rate or delirium, so I am continuing. Just 3 days to go now.

Day 8

Weight: 56.8 kg
Blood Pressure: 129/80
Heart Rate: 62

Woke up feeling quite well again. Core temperature still at 36.3 in the morning and lost only 200g of weight. (I may turn into a breatharian at this rate 🙂 ). Both blood pressure and heart rate good.

In the late afternoon I felt like I lost all of my energy. Was feeling weak and tired. This was the worse I have felt energy wise since starting. An unexpected development was a low grade fever in the evening of 37.7 Celsius. I am not sure what caused this. Could have been the GCMAF injection I had today or yesterday’s Iscadore (mistletoe), but these never caused a fever before. Secretly hoping that the elevated temperature is due to cancer cell die off. After all this is why I am doing this.

My mouth is becoming very dry. I still have some saliva, but its much more viscous. There is just enough to keep my mouth somewhat moist, but not enough to swallow. My voice has also changed significantly. This will be due to the drying out of the vocal chords I expect.

Still have the strong chemical taste in my mouth, but only in the late afternoon and evening.

Into the final stretch, just 2 more days to go.

Day 9

Weight: 56.3 kg
Blood Pressure: 120/84
Heart Rate: 70

Day nine is the day my saliva ran out. Its a very weird feeling having a totally dry mouth. I am coping by rinsing my mouth out with water every so often. That helps a lot and makes it bearable. I have also noticed that my skin is now quite dry.

Lost another 500g, blood pressure is low for me but the heart rate is still good. I will thus continue for another day.

I still have good energy levels in the morning, but feel extremely weak and tired from mid afternoon.

I saw my Qigong master. He said that I still look quite good and suggested that I should fast an extra three days. I politely told him what he can do with that idea. I have a chilled fresh coconut in the fridge with my name on it, and I am sooooo looking forward to it. This will be my first drink in 10 days and I am not waiting another 3 days. The reason I picked a fresh coconut to start with is because the coconut milk is full of electrolytes.

My local reactions to Iscador are getting stronger, now leaving a sore, hard and swollen lump at the injection site. Looks like my immune system is getting better with each day on the fast. Whether the fast has any impact on my cancer still remains to be seen.

Just one more day to go.

Day 10

Weight: 56.0 kg
Blood Pressure: 116/82
Heart Rate: 86

WOW I made it. Day ten is almost over and I must say that it was the hardest day to date. Had this not been the last, I most likely would have quit at this point.

I went shopping today in order to buy all the food I was going to eat over the long easter weekend coming up. It was hard and was at times glad to have the support of the shopping cart as was not all that stable on my feet. I bought mostly fruit and a few vegetables. Not sure why but I have this great urge to eat fruit. I guess its because it is full of sugars and carbs, something that my body desperately needs the most at this point.

The reason I mentioned that I would have stopped after this day is my mind started to get fuzzy. I found it hard to think, hard to concentrate and made a few rather obvious mistakes during the day by not being able to think things through.

Had my first bowel movement today since day 1. Not overly pleasant. The odor very similar to the nasty chemical taste that I had in my mouth. I guess the detox part of the fast is working.

Had some liver pains today and a dull pain at the site if the primary tumour. This is the first time i experienced it at this level since starting. I am in two minds about that. Could mean that things are happening and the extra three days I was recommended to do, could possibly have a major impact. But based on my physical health, not a good idea and decided against it.

Was feeling hungry today. Hunger I have not really felt for over a week now. I assume its the anticipation of breaking the fast.

Sleep was again an issue. The past week I tend to wake up at 4 am. Seems like that while fasting I only need 4-5 hours of sleep.

I lost a total of 9.2 kg over the past 10 days. It was a challenge I set myself, one that I never believed that I would complete. I don’t know if this fast will do anything for my cancer, but hopefully there will be some visible changes on my bloodwork due on the 4th of April. I will post my results.

As a warning, this was my personal experiment and I do not endorse or recommend it to anyone else. Please note that there are many documented cases of people dying after 5-7 days of dry fasting.

Now to break open that young coconut I have been soooo looking forward to.



About Ren

I have been diagnosed with stage 4, metastatic colorectal cancer in October 2012, 3 days after my 44th birthday. There is no cure, but I am determined to go down the road less travelled to find one. I have setup this blog to document my journey and hopefully help others in the process. My view is that if there is a cure, it does not lie with traditional chemo, but with the immune system. Time will tell.
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