This very question has been on my mind since starting to read this blog. I’m 69 years old, APOE 4/4, with long-lived relatives, generally in good health, 24 BMI, T2D controlled 20 years, a1c consistently 5.7.
I’m always amazed when I read reports here and elsewhere from people thriving on ketogenic diets. To make two long stories short….I tried keto for six months in 2002 - I could not think, could not lift weights, could not run or bicycle, had exploded cholesterol, and was constantly miserable. I read up on ketogenic diet at the forum wiki (which is superb! thanks to all), including the link to induction flu. I had that the whole time. Riding my bike home 5 miles from work was always exhausting, and one day the exhaustion, misery, and massive, universe-hating panic was too much and I ended the diet.
I tried again in 2013 for three months. Cleaner diet. Felt bad but wanted to tough it out. I was traveling for fun with son and his beau. They went into the grocery store and I stayed in the car in the parking lot. I decided I wanted to get something in the store. We came back out and I had left the car door wide open, the keys in the ignition, and all our stuff unsecured. That is completely unlike me. I stopped keto then and there, and felt good and smart again. I can’t accept that something that makes me feel so bad and destroys my cognition could be good for me and for my cognition. Next, I erred in diet by eating too much protein, some fat, some carbs.
A year later I discovered the Perfect Health Diet and have been 70-90% compliant since, more compliant since I learned I am APOE 4/4. Lowish carbs (non-white-potato tubers and almost no grain), moderate protein (frequent SMASH fish), lots of EVOO, avocado, non-sugary vegetables. Two years ago started consciously to intermittent fast. Always a minimum of 12 hours, often 14, with no discomfort. I tried a 36-hour fast (with electrolytes) at Christmas. It was easy to will the fast, but I felt physically bad. I read what Theresa wrote about the Ede presentation - maybe I’m OK - moderate insulin resistance and lowish carb?
Reading Jaminet’s blog a few years ago, it seemed to me that some people explode with joy and energy from the ketogenic diet and others, like me, feel like they are dying 24/7. Are there others on this board who respond badly to attempts at ketogenesis? Why are some people that way? I have good discipline and have contemplated trying the keto diet again, but even if I do follow the latest advice, it seems to me that the odds of reaching keto-adaptation are quite low. I foresee months of misery with no rewards at the end. However, I want to remain mentally intact for as long as possible.
I think I can extend the intermittent fast. MCTs are advised against, except as a bridge to full keto. How about extending in the morning with a little C8 and exogenous ketones (cal-mag-pot-sod)? I tried that once last week and felt pretty good till noon. I suppose I can try full fast for some number of days once a month but my 36-hour experiment suggests I’d be nonfunctional for the duration. I’m aware of the fasting-mimicking diet - rather than do that, I think I would prefer to just fast rather than obsessing about the next tiny snack.
Thanks for any advice.