I occasionally (when kids are at their dad’s and work schedule allow me to stay mostly at home) go on a fast (can be a 24 water fast or Valter Longo’s 5 day fasting mimicking diet) while keeping my intermittent fasting and my workout regiment as usual.
It’s not for everyone and all health states but in the right controlled conditions, activating the body’s stress defense can be highly regenerative and as a lifestyle practice, contribute to healthy longevity.
Autophagy serves housekeeping functions, enabling the breakdown and recycling of cellular materials, and helps balance energy demands during periods of stress.
To induce autophagy, your liver glycogen needs to be low, you need to suppress mTOR, which is the pathway that signals your cells to grow and replicate; you need to up the fuel sensor that gets released in energy deprivation and fat burning states; and you need to be in this depleted state for at least a day or even more.
Suppressing insulin and restricting calorie intake will suppress mTOR which can help to raise autophagy but it comes with a trade off in terms of maintaining muscle mass.