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BawdyWench Fri, Feb-19-21 12:21

Marty Kendall's Data-Driven Fasting
Since I've been hearing a lot about Marty Kendall's Data-Driven Fasting approach around here lately, I thought it would be good to have a place to discuss it. I looked for other threads, but couldn't find any (doesn't mean I didn't miss them).

Rob (GRB5111) summed up the approach nicely (taken from another thread in the General Low-Carb section):
Originally Posted by GRB5111
DDF is not a radical fasting approach; rather, you literally eat to the meter (as Dr. Bernstein recommends). You start with a 3-day benchmarking exercise by measuring your blood glucose first thing in the morning (to gauge the dawn phenomenon) and then right before and an hour after each meal. He provides you with a spreadsheet to record the data, and using your data from the first 3 days, it helps you find when it's time to eat (based on your BG which tracks your personal hunger threshold). After that you check your BG just before meal time, and if it's higher than your hunger threshold, you wait until it becomes within the threshold before eating. This trains your body to know when you're truly hungry and helps to lower both personal hunger and personal fat thresholds. Several people on this forum have participated in the DDF Challenge and have had excellent results. The next DDF challenge starts on March 6.

One of the reasons I like Marty Kendall is that he uses Ted Naiman's P:E Diet approach to achieving better health. It's a very analytical approach to nutrition that emphasizes increased healthy protein, healthy vegetables and micro-nutrients, a reduced emphasis on fats (in other words, keto with a realistic approach), and elimination of unhealthy manufactured fats from seeds. Increasing my protein consumption and reducing my fat consumption to only what rides with the foods I eat a couple years ago helped me tremendously.

The home page is here:

I'm still on the fence on whether to do the next DDF challenge starting on March 6, but I have started doing the 3-day baselining of blood glucose readings. I look forward to hearing what others think of the program.

BawdyWench Fri, Feb-19-21 12:28

To start this off, I've finished the first day of baselining and am into my second day. My BG doesn't seem to move much so far. Below is a summary of my test results and what I ate yesterday.

Please note that this is absolutely NOT how I typically eat. I rarely make stew, make biscuits, or eat Ritz crackers. This was kind of a test to see how my BG readings might change after eating way more carbs than I usually eat (today I'm back to how I normally eat, and will report that tomorrow). I do indulge in a glass or two of wine or whiskey fairly often, though I've been cutting down lately.

Waking: 96
1 1/2 mugs of black coffee
Before breakfast: 111
1 cup 2% Greek yogurt (plain)
After breakfast: 98
Before lunch (no snack today): 94
8 oz burger, 2 eggs fried
After lunch: 91
Before snack: 94
7 Ritz crackers with spreadable cheese, glass of wine
After snack: 95
Before dinner: 95
Guinness stew, biscuit, glass of wine
After dinner: 102

As near as I can figure, here are my macros for yesterday:

Calories: 2,384
Fat: 138 g
Carbs: 91 g
Protein: 155 g

I was surprised that BG rose so much after having black coffee, more so even than after a dinner of stew, a biscuit, and a glass of wine (preceded by the Ritz crackers!).

Oh, and strangely enough, I was down a pound this morning. Go figure!

lowjax Fri, Feb-19-21 12:54

Thanks for posting this. I'm interesting to see how this goes for you. I have been looking a bit at the P:E and am intrigued as to how this works. Not sure I want to keep poking my fingers though. :lol:

BawdyWench Fri, Feb-19-21 12:57

That's what I thought at first too (poking fingers), but after reading the book more carefully, you really only do that for the first 3 days to get a baseline. After that, you only test BEFORE your meals, not after, and if your BG is not below your baseline, you put off eating until it is. You can test again in 30 - 60 minutes. He says that after a while you'll get to know the difference between appetite (your BG is still above baseline) and true hunger (your BG is below baseline, indicating that all the glycogen is depleted from your liver).

And when I do eat, I try to follow Naiman's guidelines. For me, that's at least 132 g protein, no more than 65 g fat, and no more than 65 g carbs. Yesterday was an anomoly.

lowjax Fri, Feb-19-21 13:09

Thanks for the info. Is there a calculator for Naiman's guidelines online? That will be a bit of a switch for me. I am usually around 65% Fat, 40% Protein. Averages out to about 120 grams each of F & P. That would mean I have to cut back on my cheese....

lowjax Fri, Feb-19-21 13:26

I should have googled before posting. I found this online:

Protein >= "Your Target Weight"
Energy (Fats/Carbs combined) <= "Protein"

That would work out to roughly:
Protein: 175
Fat: 125
Carb: 50

That isn't a whole lot different. I need to up my protein a bit and lower my fat/up my carbs. Not sure I want to up my carbs yet. Will think about it.

Interesting site:
I think this may be Naiman's own site?

BawdyWench Fri, Feb-19-21 14:12

Yup, that's him too.

I don't go as high on carbs as the calculator says. Somewhere on one of his sites it says fat and carbs should each be half the amount of protein in grams. So for you it would be more like 175 g protein, 87 g fat, and 87 g carbs.

In this same section of the forum is a whole thread on Naiman that includes all his various websites.

thud123 Fri, Feb-19-21 15:10

i plan on joining the next. following NO MAster class now. too much for me. good tools, too much work.

BawdyWench Fri, Feb-19-21 15:11

Boy, you said it! I signed up for the DDF and I'm now trying to enter all my info from yesterday and keep messing it up!

GRB5111 Sat, Feb-20-21 11:50

Per Thud's comment, DDF compared to NO is not as much work. As you said, Bawdy, the 3-day baseline data collection is a lot, but after that, it's not as high maintenance while you're training yourself and adjusting your personal hunger and personal fat thresholds by eating to the meter. It's also something that you can revisit anytime to check in on your status of BG and meal timing. As mentioned, I like the combination of Naiman and Kendall and have learned much from both.

BawdyWench Sun, Feb-21-21 05:17

The Challenge app site has been down since yesterday afternoon, at least for me. I've posted on the FB page that it's down, but no one else has mentioned it so maybe it's just me. I've tried in using Microsoft Edge, Chrome, and on my phone. No luck.

JEY100 Sun, Feb-21-21 08:13

Logout, then log in again. Logout by following this link:

BawdyWench Sun, Feb-21-21 08:14

I've logged out and back in dozens of times since yesterday, using the Logout button under my username profile thingy. I can't even get in at the moment.

BawdyWench Sun, Feb-21-21 08:16

Wait. Putting that address in, I got to the sign-in page again. I'll have to remember this! THANK YOU!!!

Nope. After entering my email address and password, I again get the "Oops" screen.

JEY100 Sun, Feb-21-21 08:19

Alex was working on it...Try using the website for now

BawdyWench Sun, Feb-21-21 08:21

Sorry for being so dense. What do you mean by website? I'm using the app in a browser (Edge) on my laptop. If there's another site where I can enter my data, will it then synch to the app?

JEY100 Sun, Feb-21-21 09:53

This is a Web based app, explained in Guide 1...but it may be your browser. "Add the DDF app to your phone home screen

As part of the onboarding process, you will be guided to add the DDF app to the home screen on your phone. Once you do this it will look and feel like a native app.
To do this on iPhone open in Safari (not Chrome or Edge) and click on the square with the arrow at the bottom of the screen.
On Android, tap on the menu icon (three dots on the top right) and select add to home screen.
Voila! You will now see an app icon on the home screen of your phone.
You will be able to access DDF from your phone or your computer"

Just an aside...there are so many FB pages! One for DDF program in general, the one created for this challenge and other previous ones. A Nutrient Optimizing FB in general, one for the Masterclass. And if you want to look at meals optimized...ask to join FB group Healthy Low Carb & Keto Recipes. Then there are all the websites, Instagram etc :daze:

BawdyWench Sun, Feb-21-21 12:04

Thanks, Janet! I already went through the entire onboarding process and read everything. I don't want to use my phone for this. Old-fashioned, I guess. The app was working fine on my laptop using Edge. Until it didn't. I tried Chrome, too, and that didn't work, either. Finally, I tried it on my phone ... and it didn't work, either. Alex said last night he would fix it in the morning. I keep checking back. It's really ok, since I'm keeping track using the original spreadsheet. It's OK for now. If it's not working by tomorrow morning, I'll let him know.

JEY100 Sun, Feb-21-21 13:14

I see Alex is on the case now. :) I didn't feel confident in the app last month, I continued to use the spreadsheet and still do at times.

The start of the DDF Challenge is still two weeks away...if you or anyone wants a taste of nutrient optimization, there is also a free week of that. Doing both NO and DDF at same time is somewhat overwhelming, but doing a food list before the start of DDF might point you to more proteins and missing nutrients.

FREE 7 Day Food Tracking Challenge

You may have discovered during the DDF Challenge that, while WHEN you eat is important, WHAT you eat is critical.
To help you find the micronutrient and macronutrient gaps in your diet, we created the FREE 7 Day Food Tracking Challenge.
After a week of tracking what you eat, Nutrient Optimiser will highlight the foods and meals that will enable you to fill your micronutrient gaps.

BawdyWench Sun, Feb-21-21 14:18

In the book where he talks about the hunger training he mentions another tab in the spreadsheet. I only have the first tab for baselining and the second tab to enter specific foods and bg levels. Do you have a third tab?

JEY100 Sun, Feb-21-21 18:22

The other tabs or Phases are Phase 3, Eating Window, based on BG or Weight, Phase 4, Skipping Meals based on BG or Weight, and Phase 5 Maintenance. I didn't use them, though during NO I am vaguely following eating window.

BawdyWench Mon, Feb-22-21 07:05

Huh. Would it be possible for you to email me a blank copy of the spreadsheet you have? I can PM you my email address.

BawdyWench Mon, Feb-22-21 08:40

I'm finally in the app and have entered all my values through today. Even though my entries began with Feb. 18 (4 days ago), it still says I have one more day of tracking before it will give me my trigger point. My average pre-meal level is 98, though, so I'm going to use that as my trigger until it spits out my new level.

So far I'm down 3 pounds and I really haven't changed my way of eating at all. Well, maybe I've upped my protein and added a small amount of veggies (and I mean small).

I know I don't want to get into the Nutrition Optimization at this point; we'll see about in the future.

Good thing I'm retired because there's no way I could enter all the data the app calls for and work at the same time!

JEY100 Mon, Feb-22-21 12:33

Lots of data entry for DDF?? That's nothing compared to NO. :lol: :lol:

BawdyWench Mon, Feb-22-21 15:10

Originally Posted by JEY100
Lots of data entry for DDF?? That's nothing compared to NO. :lol: :lol: Enjoy

And that's why I probably won't continue on to NO. I already make myself and my husband crazy with all the rules such. It's all very stressful to always be thinking about what you are or are not putting in your mouth, how that compares with the rules and what you did yesterday and what you plan to do tomorrow, and always chasing this number or that number. I sometimes wonder how the sheer stress of it all is affecting my body and mind.

At some point you have to either make peace with things or drive yourself crazy.

JEY100 Tue, Feb-23-21 06:24

There isn’t much emphasis on WHAT you eat in the DDF simply guides you to know if your BG is low enough to eat, after you have depleted all glucose and are now burning fat. It is only one number you are tracking, but tells you WHEN to eat. If you feel snacky in the afternoon, but your BG is not below trigger, you don’t eat. If your BG never gets low enough, like Dr Westman and Naiman, this plan suggests you do eat a protein meal each day. The IDM group wrote that older women should do 36-42 hour fasts alternate days. I think long term that is not helpful, DDF creates fasting guidelines based on your personal BG.

While most people focus on how much their blood sugar rises AFTER meals, Data-Driven Fasting uses your blood sugar BEFORE you eat to help you decide if you need to refuel.
Waiting until your blood sugar returns to baseline ensures you are not over-fueling. But, waiting a little longer until your blood sugar has dropped *below *your personalised blood glucose trigger point ensures your intermittent fasting routine is achieving a negative energy balance. By doing this, you ensure you get all the associated benefits, like insulin sensitivity, improved blood sugars, weight loss, fat loss, autophagy, etc. over the long term.
**One of the underappreciated secrets of fat loss is that you need to deplete the glucose in your bloodstream before your body can access your body fat.
If your blood sugars are elevated, you’re not going to be burning as much of the fat from your last meal (let alone that unwanted fat on your bum and belly).
Some people talk about eating more fat to become “fat adapted” so you can be “in ketosis” and burn more fat. But the truth is, if you want to burn the fat on your body (rather than that fat bomb or second buttered coffee), you need to find a way to deplete the glucose in your bloodstream first!
from Mary Kendall"s DDF manual.

BawdyWench Tue, Feb-23-21 06:37

I see what you mean about the differences in the two programs, which is why I'll probably never do the ON one (it will just keep saying I need more veggies to get certain nutrients, and I can't eat a lot of veggies, as mentioned previously).

I've tried longer fasts before, and could never do them. Maybe once I was able to do a 36-hour fast. Intermittent fasting comes easily to me, but I still can only stick with a 18/6 window, no smaller an eating window. Partly this is because I have a husband to feed, too, and he simply doesn't understand my not eating and gets angry when I cook for him and I don't have anything. He says, Then don't cook anything for me. I'll get by. Yeah, with cookies and milk. Better that I cook for both of us.

My trigger is 93 in the app and 97 when done manually using the spreadsheet. Waking BG was 93 yesterday. At 11:30 I felt good and ready for lunch, tested BG, and it was 88. Good to go!

Lunch was 6 oz ham and 2 eggs fried in a bit of butter, a little over a cup of 2% Greek yogurt with 1 scoop of collagen. All protein, only a little fat.

At 6:15 pm (that's nearly 7 hours later) while dinner was cooking I tested BG again and it was 104. Technically, I shouldn't have eaten, but when you live with someone (hubby) and dinner is ready, dinner is ready. I went ahead and ate. 8 oz pork tenderloin, 2 cups spaghetti sauce with a bit of butter.

Sometimes I think my meter is wonky, though, like maybe not quite enough blood from the poke, or whatever.

JEY100 Tue, Feb-23-21 07:15

You haven’t memorized all 99 FAQs yet? :lol:

#73. Some people have found when they test again before they eat that their blood sugars may have risen while they prepare their meal. It is perfectly normal for your body to release glucose into your bloodstream: ● when it anticipates food is coming, ● as part of the normal process of maintaining stable blood sugars, or ● if it gets stressed by low blood sugars and hunger. The “secret” here is not to test again. Just go ahead and eat if you are hungry and your blood sugar has dipped below your trigger. This is one of the downsides to using a continuous glucose monitor for hunger training as it can provide more data than necessary. The goal is to leverage the minimum effective dose of measurement to ensure you are moving progress rather than becoming overwhelmed by data.

After a while, I fixed dinner as my "Main Meal" and lunch/brunch as the discretionary meal

BawdyWench Tue, Feb-23-21 07:41

Too funny! I actually knew that, but selectively forgot it! :lol:

I'd love to have dinner be my only meal, but I get REALLY hungry during the day. Maybe through the course of this next month I'll be able to train my body to wait longer and longer for lunch until it's just dinner.

These OMAD people, they eat one meal a day, but most say it goes on for a while. Some say an eating window of 4 hours is still considered one meal a day, and they eat pretty much the entire 4 hours.

Not sure if I agree with that being one meal a day or not.

JEY100 Tue, Feb-23-21 08:26

According to half million days of MFP data, you will eat less with 2 meals, fun fact in a nerdy geeky type of way. :lol:

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