2.5 day dry fast: dehydration as detox

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5 thoughts on “2.5 day dry fast: dehydration as detox

  1. I have a question about dry fasting. Dr. Filonov said that dry fasting “Dehydration causes competition between healthy cells and pathological organisms for water.” The average 3 day dry fast loses anywhere from 5-12lb.

    However fighters who cut weight using the water flushing method still drink at least 32 ounces of water and can cut up to 30lb of water. So doesn’t that mean there is still too much excess water in the body?


    1. Thanks for your question, Daniel. Are you sure about losing up to 30lb in water? Loss of 2% body weight in water already begins to cause a loss in athletic performance. From around 5% mental unclarity and physical weakness begin to set in. A 10% loss already counts as pretty serious dehydration. So even if your normal body weight were 300lb., a 30lb water loss isn’t something you’d want to play with if you had a fight on any time soon afterwards! If your figures are indeed correct, then all I can say is that this amount of fluid loss is definitely unhealthy.

      There’s another issue here too: in order to dry-fast successfully, your body needs to know how to switch to ketosis quickly – and this is achieved through a lot of experience with water fasts which last at least 3 days. Either that, or you have to be following a ketogenic diet in the first place (eg. low carb Paleo). When your body is burning fat directly, the excess hydrogen molecules released through the breakdown of fat bond with the oxygen in your blood and create so-called “metabolic” water – thus preventing dehydration. As a result, the weight loss incurred through dry fasting tends to be less than you’d otherwise expect. Consequently, dry fasting isn’t something I’d recommend for trying to get under a weight limit in any sport. Over the course of a 3-day dry fast, I myself lose only 3-4 kg (6-9lb), out of a normal body weight of about 65 kg. Taking into account the loss of weight from an empty gut and the burning of fat stores over the course of the fast, the actual loss of water would be less than half of this.


      1. Tallis, professional boxers, MMA and wrestlers do this on a regular basis seen here:http://fourhourworkweek.com/2013/05/06/how-to-cut-weight-ufc/

        The purpose is that they can fight in a lower weight class and gain the weight back before the fight. Weigh ins are done 24 hours earlier, so they have time to gain it back (eat and drink a lot).

        By tapering down water (2 gal, 1 gal, .50 gal .25 gal, none) they down regulate aldosterone which tells your body to holds water. They also eat very low carbs since carbs hold water.

        I keep hearing that dry fasting works because “the strongest and healthiest of cells survive in such extreme conditions” and that “Dehydration causes competition between healthy cells and pathological organisms for water.” http://laurenlaurino.com/dry-fasting/

        So my question is: If an athletic water cut can drop more water weight while still drinking 32 oz of water, is dry fasting really depriving and killing the sick cells?

        Should dry fasters start doing the athletic water cut method to be more efficient?


      2. Thanks for the links Daniel. I get your point now! So your saying that, since the athletic water cut leads to greater dehydration, then applying this dehydration method to a dry fast should theoretically strengthen the fast’s detoxification. Good question.

        In short, my answer would be: yes and no. Dehydration does force the cells to compete for available resources, so the weak and sick cells will inevitably lose the battle and die – and so in this sense, yes, the athletic water cut would increase the efficiency of a dry fast. But the detoxification process itself is carried out not by the process of dehydration but rather by the immune system, which shifts into “house-cleaning mode” when you fast. It’s the immune system which searches out sick and weak cells to burn up as energy when you fast. If your aim with a dry fast is detoxification, then the longer the fast the better, as it gives your body more time to house-clean.

        By taking on a serious dehydration program like the athletic water cut as well, you’d have to curtail the length of the dry fast, because the maximum length of a dry fast is determined by hydration levels and not fat stores (as in a water fast). In this sense, the answer would be “no”. I suppose one option would be to apply a not-too-extreme athletic water cut before a SHORT dry fast, but you’d get a better result in terms of detox by going for a longer dry fast WITHOUT dehydrating yourself first. And you should only go for a longer dry fast after gradually gaining experience in shorter dry fasts!


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