I cured my Type II Diabetes, Insulin Resistance, Sleep Apnea, and Obesity — SO CAN YOU
These two pictures are of the same person. Seperated by three years. What changed? What did I discover? What works and what doesn’t?
I learned how to successfully burn fat, gain lean muscle, and become a better athlete all through self-experimination and trial/error. My fitness journey has given me the knowledge and information that no book or diet could teach me. I’ve followed fad diets, bull sh*t fitness advice, and thought medication and drugs were the only solution to solving my medical problems and obesity. Instead of blaming the root cause (myself and bad habits), I believed that I was just born to be overweight; obese actually. That Diabetes ran in the family, and Insulin Resistance and constant sugar cravings were just in my blood, and there was nothing I could do about it.
I believed the only route for me was medication, taking Insulin for the rest of my life and prescription drugs. Did I mention I was only seventeen years old when I was first diagnosed as obese and with Type II Diabetes — along with several other medical problems and issues. I was a young man, a boy in fact, who should be in tip top shape, enjoying life, and living my life to its’ fullest. Instead, I was sitting in the doctors office, getting told I was fat and would have to take insulin shots everyday.
I remember leaving that doctors appointment with no hope. I was shocked at how bad my health really was, and how instead of changing my eating habits or developing a new lifestyle, the doctors I have seen all wanted to give me medication, or see another specialist. How sad, and to put it bluntly, how corrupt our health and medical field is.
Instead of taking medication and taking daily injections, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I researched online, read books, and talkd to others about how to lower my body fat percentage, look better and feel better. I was told about tracking calories, and in order for me to lose the weight, I needed to track my calories. I believe 100% in tracking calories, and that calories are what cause weight gain and weight loss. Wether that is in terms of muscle or fat. Tracking calories does work, but there’s much more in play to curing and developing lean muscle and burning fat.
This is when I discovered Intermittent Fasting. Instead of following a fad diet such as low carb, or high carb low fat, or Paleo, I developed a lifestyle. Instead of restricting foods and labeling foods as unhealthy and healthy, which caused me to become obese and a Type II Diabetic, I developed a new lifestyle. A way to eat, and find sustainability in eating meals I love while also staying lean and healthy. Not only is this way of eating the most sustainable and enjoyable, but also has numerous health benefits. This is why developoing a lifestyle is so much more important to one’s health and longetitivty than following a fad diet or starving yourself.
What is IF (Intermittent Fasting)?
Intermittent fasting is not a diet per se. It is a way of eating. It’s a lifestyle change and reahual. The problem with diets today and the “diet” industry is that they go to such extremes that people cannot sustain what that diet restricts and what foods it allows. From low carb, to Paleo, to no sugar or the very popular Keto Diet. All of these “diets” have two key common denomitors that they share — they are unsustainable, and even more so, unenjoyable.
This is where Intermittent Fasting comes into play. Instead of overthinking what food group to eliminate, what foods are deemed “healthy” and “unhealthy”, which actually is making people even more fat or gain fat, it’s time to find a sustainable way of eating and fueling your body, all while enjoying your life and not being that person that can’t go out or have that dinner with friends because of their “diet”. This will only lead to added stress and ultimately lead to forgetting that diet and going back to their old habits.
Types of Intermittent Fasting: 16/8 — 20/4 — Warrior Diet
These three windows of eating are all comprised of the same method and style, but separated by their timing and longetivity of one’s fast. Let me explain each.
The 16/8 Method: 16 Hours Fasted, 8 Hour Window
The first method of IF. The 16/8 method should be the starting point if one is to start IF. The premise of this method are as follows: You fast for 16 hours, and have an eating window for 8 hours. The fasting does include sleep. During your fast you consume zero calories, no liquid calories — anything consisting of calories is prohibited. You can have water, black coffee, or zero calories beverages. I stick to the basics which include: black coffee, water, tea, and the occasional branch chain amino acids in my water.
The 20/4 Method: 20 Hours Fasted, 4 Hour Window
This method of IF is the same as the 16/8 method, but you simply extend your fast for another four hours, equating to a 20 hour fast. Which leads to a 4 hour eating window. This method is great for those who are experienced with IF and want to go even deeper into their fast. Why would one go from 16/8 to 20/4? For starters, why not? When one becomes acclimated to the 16/8 method, going to 20/4 seems quiet easy in fact. Not only this, but one’s hunger actaully diminishes within the first week of fasting, and after two weeks the hunger you would always experience is amazingly gone. Which is why people will go to the 20/4 method. Lastly, with whatever method that person choses for IF, the longer the fast means the longer your insulin stays at a constant low level, all while your HGH (Human Growth Hormone) is increased. The benefits of these two hormones in our body is extraordinary, and is the key to how beneficial IF is to the human body and mind.
The Warrior Diet: 1 Meal A Day
The last style of IF. After going from 16/8, to 20/4, one might experiment with the Warrior Diet. Yes, the name most certainly fits this style of eating. One truly becomes a fasting warrior. As your body becomes more in tune with fasting and the benefits that come with it, going from 16/8 or 20/4 to the Warrior Diet isn’t that difficult. If anything, its almost a way of celebrating how you’ve achieved the end goal of fasting. To train your body to become a machine. A machine that not only has their HGH that can go up by 2,000% during one’s fast, but also will start to burn fat more efficiently, and build that lean, athletic appearance that most strive to become. The warrior diet doesn’t have to be in the end goal, in fact, many stick to the traditional 16/8 method, but once one becomes acclimated to IF, the interest in prolonging that fast is definitely in one’s mind.
Breakfast: Break | Fast
The easiest and most used way of starting and implementing IF is to skip breakfast. Quick note, what does breakfast even mean? If you separate breakfast into two words — break fast — it simply stands for breaking your fast. When you sleep, you are not consuming any calories, you are actually fasting. The point of breakfast is to break that fast, start your day with a “healthy” meal to start the day. We have been led to believe that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and if one skipped breakfast, their metabolism would shut down and their day would be ruined. The breakfast industry has manipulated and tricked millions upon millions of people to never skip breakfast. From all the cereal companies, to the dairy and meat industries, and even doctors and nutritionists, breakfast is the most important meal and should never be skipped to have a successful day and live a healthy life. To put it bluntly, all of these industries don’t give a damn about your health, they care about your money. From breakfast foods, to even protein supplement companies and supplements, all of these industries are all the same. Claiming to be beneficial to your health and living a healthy life, when in fact, they are actually making you sick and overweight.
IF: How to Start
Starting IF is quiet simple in terms of it’s protocols. Adapting to IF is more difficult. Let me explain.
To start, simply skip breakfast. Have a bottle of water, or glass of water with ice. Their are numerous benefits to waking up and having the first thing in your system being water. From here, go on and carry about your normal day. Whether that is working out in the morning, taking your morning walk, or checking your social media and news, nothing else changes. If you are a coffee drinker, it must be black. No cream, no sugar, no calories. I usually have my coffee about an hour or two after waking, its surprisingly very satiating and helps improve my focus along with diminishing any hunger I feel. If you are on the 16/8 method, you simply will eat your first meal after you’ve completed your 16 hour fast. If your last meal was at 7 p.m. the night before, you can have your first meal/snack at 11 a.m. If your last meal was at 10 p.m. the night before, you can have your first meal/snack at 2 p.m. the following day. Both of these equating to a 16 hour fast. Following your first consumption of food, you now have 8 hours to finish your calories for the day. If your first meal was at 2 p.m. you have again until 10 p.m. to eat. Some people eat two bigger meals a day, some will stick to three meals. This is all a matter of preference and what you find the most enjoyable.
As for the 16/8 method, if you are on the 20/4 method, the same guidelines apply. You fast for 20 hours, and have a 4 hour eating window. As for the Warrior Diet, you simply have that one meal a day. Usually these people will have that last meal at roughly the same time each night, so the fast is just a matter of having that meal, then waiting another 23–24 hours to have their next.
Adapting to IF
When starting IF, the first week will be a challenge. One will experience intense hunger pains, along with the feeling of mood changes and swings. While I never experienced the mood changes and swings, I did experience the hunger in the beginning. After the first 10 days, I was feeling much better and the hunger was almost gone. After two complete weeks, I was fully adapted to fasting and was starting to really feel the benefits. My focus during the fast was window was better than it has ever been, my cravings for sweet foods and processed junk was gone. My workouts were actually better than ever before and I was increasing my strength. One of the reasons for my better workouts and focus was that instead of my body digesting food and constant blood sugar and insulin spikes, my body started to utilize its stored energy (fat) along with the adrenaline rush that fasting provides. I went into my workouts with focus and an end goal.
After one month of IF, my lifestyle and approach to eating was changed. I realized how obsessed I was with food before, and how I never seemed to be satisfied on eating 3–5 meals a day. IF changed the way my body utilized calories, instead of eating to just eat, I ate to perform and refuel my body. I think of it in terms of how one would treat their Ferrari or Lamborghini, or any car for that matter. Personally I like to relate it to higher end cars because it gives me a more personal reason to treat my body as it should be. To fuel it like an athlete. As for cars, one is not always fueling their car with gasoline. The car uses the gas, draining its fuel source, and then will get more gasoline to replenish and refuel. The same goes for our bodies and food. We train, work, and go about our days. We’re not always fueling our bodies, we use our stores energy to go through the day, and even more while working out and training. After, we then replenish our bodies with nutrients and calories.
The problem today is that people are always eating, most will never give their bodies a break of eating food and consuming calories. Over time, one will begin to start storing more and more body fat. The sad reality is, that our bodies have an unlimited capacity to store fat. Hence, why our country and the world is getting more and more fat, all while causing certain diseases that are brought on by diet. From Type II Diabetes, Insulin Resistance, even IBS, cancers, and Alzheimers, one’s diet and way of eating is a major factor in how healthy their body is. This brings me back to the car anology. If one gives their car terrible gas, the car will not run properaly. In the long run, it will begin to slow down, shut down, and it’s performance will go down the drain. This relates exactly to how we treat our bodies, how we fuel our bodies and how often we fuel it.
HGH and Insulin: Two Very Important Hormones
The two most important hormones in our bodies are HGH and Insulin. Both with two very important purposes, and both improved with fasting.
Lets start with HGH
Human Growth Hormone is a hormone in charge of regulating muscle tissue. Along with regeneration of the bodies cells and the forming of healthy muscle and strong bones. At its peak, HGH can increase by as much as 2,000% when in a fasted state. The benefits of this alone are a huge when one starts IF. If that reason alone isn’t enough, the increase of HGH is a key factor in preventing certain cancers and healing the body of bad cells, along with certain diseases and even helps promote a healthy heart.
I have attached a great article about IF and the HGH benefits that follows, along with several other important health benefits to maximize one’s potential — https://www.dietdoctor.com/fasting-and-growth-hormone
Insulin: The Major Hunger Hormone
As I stated above, I used to be Insulin Resistant. What does this mean? It means that I was always hungry, usually snacking every so often and eating and eating. My body became a fat STORING machine. I ate because it felt good, I ate because I was bored, and frankly I ate because the food was always available. My body never got a chance to take a break of processing and digesting food. Because of this, I kept gaining and gaining weight. I remember during this time I would blame my “slow metabolism” or other health problems that I can easily put the blame on. I thought I was eating healthy. The commercials and boxes said “a good source of protein” and “burn fat with this food”. The problem wasn’t the deemed “healthy” or “unhealthy” food, it was the constant eating and spiking of my insulin. Which over time, I started to destroy my health. I became less satisfied with more food, and slowly gave myself constant high blood sugar which resulted in developing a self-induced Type II Diabetes. I gave myself this disease because of my habits. My bad eating habits and constant eating led to my health problems. I can blame the health food industry, or the food industry in general — but why? They were simply doing their job. To make money. They promoted their product with an end goal to build a profit. They do not care about your health. You think the people behind the cereal Cheerio’s really care about your heart health? Or do you think the dairy industry really cares about you getting your calcium? No… Way… In… Hell… They want one thing, for you to buy their product, and to continue to buy their product.
Here is another great article on Fasting, with more details about Insulin. Instead of being Insulin Resistant, the end goal is to become Insulin Senstitive. https://www.mangomannutrition.com/you-are-when-you-eat-intermittent-fasting/
This is my first story on IF and the benefits of what this style of eating provides. Again, this is not a diet, this is a lifestyle rehaul. Changing how food is effected in your body, and how you can become not only a healthier individual, but with proper training and nutrition, an athlete.
I will be continuing to provide new information, strategies, and helpful guides for IF and training routines. I can also be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
I also am a personal trainer in New York, NY, along with being a group instructor in HIIT classes and calisthenics training. I also specialize in in-person coaching and online coaching. From training programs, to implementing Flexible Dieting, all of which are keys to become the healthiest and strongest person you can become, no matter your background history. You can reach me at email@example.com for further inquires and questions.
Thanks for reading!
Basic information and stats from the year 2013–14 to present (2017)
Age: 17–18 | Weight: 199 lbs | Body Fat: 31% | Medical Conditions: Type II Diabetes, Insulin Resistance, IBS, Sleep Apnea, Low Energy, Always Hungry/Sugar Cravings | Strength: 1 pull up, 15–20 push ups | Endurance: Non-Existant
Age: 22 | Weight: 140 lbs | Body Fat: 8% | Medical Conditions: Gone | Strength: 30 pull ups, 70–80 Push Ups, Strength progression/Results | Endurance: HIIT Programs, Crossfit Competitions, Resting Heart Rate below 50, Cycling and Running |