Studies and books recommended to read when putting the pieces together.
Literature focused specifically on dry fasting
Dry Fasting 20 Questions & Answers
The original holy grail of dry fasting. The most important dry fasting book you can buy. Filonov pioneered dry fasting in 'The West' by making it accessible from Russia. Russian doctors have been dry fasting for a long time, with greats such as Leonid Schennikov pioneering the way.
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The Phoenix Protocol
Dunning is specific that his intention with this is to encourage deep healing, stem cell release, mental clarity with a goal of extending your ability to live a healthy active life. Not just live longer, but live longer in a "younger" body.
Where the protocol kicks in differently than a standard dry fast is upon breaking the fast. He has a very specific refeeding procedure that includes supplements to encourage cleaning out of senescent cells and promoting stem cell release. He has a YouTube channel that shows some of his dry fasts day by day and describes the protocol in more depth. I suggest watching them before buying the book. If it looks like your thing, get the book. It's a solid resource on dry fasting, in my opinion.
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The Dry Fasting Miracle
A very basic insight into dry fasting short amount of days. Think of it more like Ramadan and slightly longer dry fasts. A lot of ideas are distilled from Ramadan research studies, and a lot of little testimonials are littered throughout the book like: "Dry fasting improved my energy levels", etc.
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Research focused specifically on dry fasting
Increased fat catabolism sustains water balance during fasting in zebra finches
When zebra finches fast, their body reacts differently based on their access to water. In a study, three groups were observed: birds with access to both food and water, birds without food but with water, and birds without both. It was expected, based on past research, that birds without food would use more proteins to maintain their water balance. However, the study found that birds without access to water relied more on burning fat, which produced six times more water for the body compared to those with water access. So, it seems that in these conditions, fat is the main source of water production in the body. The earlier belief that proteins were mainly used for this purpose might only apply when there's no fat left or when there's a high demand for energy.
Potential Synergies of β-Hydroxybutyrate and Butyrate on the Modulation of Metabolism, Inflammation, Cognition, and General Health
The ketogenic diet, which is a high-fat, low-carb diet, has been used for years to treat conditions like weight issues, epilepsy, cancer, and even dementia. However, there are concerns about its safety because of increased ketone levels and lack of dietary fiber. Many people find it hard to follow due to its strict rules and initial side effects. Research shows that using external ketones and related supplements can be beneficial and might make the diet easier or even serve as an alternative. One such supplement combination is BHB and BA, which work well together at the cellular level.
What is ketosis and why do humans enter it? An introduction to the evolutionary biology of ketosis, fasting, and the ketogenic diet.
Hypertonic stress response
The cells in the inner part of a mammal's kidney are regularly exposed to very high levels of salt (NaCl). Surprisingly, even though this high salt concentration damages their DNA and interferes with the repair process, these cells continue to live and function properly both inside the body and in lab experiments. Researchers have found that these cells adapt to the stressful conditions by accumulating special substances that help them maintain their normal size and internal balance, despite the high salt levels.
However, these adaptations don't stop the DNA damage. The cells still experience DNA breaks, but these breaks get quickly fixed if the salt levels are reduced. Interestingly, the cells continue to grow and function well despite the ongoing DNA damage. Even though high salt levels mess with some of the typical responses to DNA damage, other elements involved in DNA repair still get activated.
So, the big questions are: How does the high salt concentration cause DNA breaks, and how do the cells manage to survive and function despite this damage? Scientists are still trying to figure this out. Can these adaptations be one of the mechanisms that help us rebound with health after a dry fast? It would stipulate that being in a hypertonic stress for too long would be dangerous, but controlled stresses seem to cause no problems and in fact the rebound infact seems healthy.
Hypertonic stress promotes autophagy and microtubule-dependent autophagosomal clusters
this study looks at how cells cope with changes in their environment that affect the balance of water and salt, a state known as "osmotic homeostasis." When cells are exposed to a high-salt environment (hypertonic stress), it can cause damage to their proteins. The study examines two specific things: autophagy, a process where cells "clean up" damaged parts, and the arrangement of microtubules, a component of the cell's skeleton.
The researchers found that when cells are stressed by high salt levels, they quickly start the autophagy process to degrade long-lasting proteins and generate other markers indicative of autophagy. Specific substances that affect the autophagy process showed that it is actively ongoing during this high-salt stress and is important for cell survival.
In addition to autophagy, high salt levels also rapidly change the organization of microtubules within the cells. These changes appear to help cluster special structures called autolysosomes near the cell's center, which seems to be a part of the autophagy process. This clustering and effective autophagy depend on the proper arrangement of these microtubules and are also influenced by other molecular mechanisms.
The study suggests that both autophagy and the reorganization of microtubules are crucial ways that cells protect themselves when exposed to high-salt conditions. With improved microtubules following a dry fast, we can expect the body to have improved autophagy pathways.
Starvation in man
Very detailed, amazing paper on the effects of fasting from 1970s. You will need to find the PDF in a free full version which can be found in certain places. I have the PDF but cannot remember where I got it.
Dry Fasting Physiology: Responses to Hypovolemia and Hypertonicity
This study looked at the effects of dry fasting (no food or water) for 5 days on ten participants. The researchers measured a range of factors including hormones, blood and urine markers, and body measurements daily.
- Certain hormones and markers related to stress, hydration, and inflammation increased significantly.
- Measures of urine concentration and other markers in the blood also rose.
- Waist circumference and body weight dropped noticeably.
- Levels of some hormones and markers related to red blood cell production and sodium excretion decreased.
- Vitamin C levels decreased over time.
- More than half of the weight loss came from urine, followed by water loss through breathing and skin, then a small amount from stool and respiratory gases.
Dry fasting had a range of effects on the body, such as increased stress hormones, improved antioxidant capacity, and changes in blood and urine markers. The study suggests that dry fasting may have short-term benefits like anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting effects and could potentially be useful for treating conditions like edema (swelling), obesity, and certain inflammatory and blood-flow related diseases. Since this was a very simple study, but one of the most direct dry fasting related ones, we can extrapolate that dry fasting will work for a lot of inflammatory diseases, which is one of the core features of autoimmune issues that cause system-wide inflammation.
Vasopressin increases human risky cooperative behavior
Dry fasting literally improves connection and bonding between humans. Altruistic and emotional intelligence improvement.
Autophagy research related to dry fasting
Study Name #1