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Autophagy, Longevity, anti-ageing and anti-cancer

(32 Posts)
KetoIFWinnie Sun 19-Jul-20 19:15:02

Anybody been fasting throughout their fifties and feel that they are hacking the ageing process nicely?!

I'm fasting once a week for 36 hours (following protocols) and it's all fine. Just wondering is this often enough and long enough to have any autophagy benefits?

Really fascinated by autophagy but there isn't that much out there on line and would love to hear if anybody has a good decade or five years of fasting behind them.

OP’s posts: |
siblingrevelryagain Sun 19-Jul-20 19:21:24

I’m curious to hear from others too. There are loads of podcasts talking about the benefits of fasting; look for Jason fung, Rhonda Patrick, dr Satchin Panda

KetoIFWinnie Sun 19-Jul-20 21:07:50

Oh thanks, i havent heard of the last two.

I would love to see a documentary featuring a group of healthy energetic youthful 75 year olds who have all incorporporated fasting in to their lifestyle for decades!

There is data out there i know, but i want to see the people!

OP’s posts: |
LeGrandBleu Tue 21-Jul-20 22:24:48

In your title you mention autophagy and cancer, so here you need to be careful. Nothing is simple when it comes to the cell, and autophagy is actually used by cancer cells to grow.
Quote from a paper
" Cancer cells also rely on autophagy, but more so than normal cells. This may be due to high metabolic demand imposed by cancer cell growth and residence in a stressful microenvironment. In contrast to normal cells, cancer cells often have autophagy induced under fed conditions. For example, Ras-driven cancers commonly have high levels of basal autophagy and are extremely dependent on autophagy for sustaining mitochondrial respiration, for survival in stress and for tumorigenesis. Thus, in comparison to normal cells, some cancers may be addicted to autophagy and preferentially sensitive to autophagy inhibition, prompting interest in inhibiting autophagy to improve cancer therapy. "

Bottom line, if you don't have cancer, fasting and autophagy might have some health benefits, if you do have cancer growing (and this is tricky unless you know you have its), you should avoid fasting except in the specific days of chemotherapy.

There is a lot of hype around fasting, longevity and so on.
I would direct you towards pubmed for verified information and as someone has mentioned podcast, I think the Peter Attia drive is a good one.

I follow more Luigi Fontana and a low calories, low protein, 45 gr of fibre recommendations

KetoIFWinnie Thu 23-Jul-20 17:03:17

Ill read that thanks. Cancer cells benefiting more from autophagy than normal cells is not part of the hype. Thank y9u for posting

OP’s posts: |
mamapants Thu 23-Jul-20 17:46:21

Funny timing as I've just done a 24 hour fast and aiming to increase to 72 hours.
Never heard about the above negativea regarding cancer as I'd read the opposite. So will have a look at that.

KetoIFWinnie Thu 23-Jul-20 18:16:26

Im shocked. I thought it was only good! There are a few books about autophagy on audible but they all seem like they just praise autophagy. This is literally the first ive heard that cancer cells benefit from autophagy. Ive done 6 x 36 hours fasts, not due to fast again til next wednesday so hopefully I'll know whether im doing the right thing or not by then.

OP’s posts: |
LeGrandBleu Thu 23-Jul-20 19:40:46

I have a genetic syndrome that gives me 60% life chance of cancer with poor survival and in addition to that, women with that syndrome have a 26 years reduce lifespan.
So the argument of longevity and cancer prevention really matters to
The problem is, nowadays , everyone and their dog is a longevity or fasting expert.
You have chiropractors giving cancer advice, celebrity chefs promoting bio hacking and so on.

I would say a could rule of thumb is to first eliminate anyone who sells something , a program, a course, a membership, juices, vitamins and so on
The medical library is called pubmed, and if you go there and type cancer + autophagy, all the articles either talk about blocking autophagy in cancer patients, using autophagy markers as a tool to measure development of cancer and showing how autophagy drives cancer development. Don't take my word, have a look yourself
Just a couple of article from this month., (a significant anti-tumor effect achieved by the enhanced autophagy inhibition )
(Previous studies indicate that breast cancer molecular subtypes differ with respect to their dependency on autophagy Autophagy is associated with cancer development. Autophagy-related genes play significant roles in endometrial cancer (EC)

These are just examples of the first hits, you have thousands of articles on autophagy and cancer and well, I haven't read them all , but so far, it is not good.

I am trying to beat my fate and genes, so I am very invested on all these new trends. I tend to read more university professors than social media celebrities. I have looked at some videos, or websites, but it is a lot off cherry picking, cut and paste , and sometimes, what they say is laughable.

We are humans, not mice. And the micro cellular environment is so complex, because we have so many enzymes and proteins. It is not as simple as 1 week in a mouse = 15 month in a human and I just primary school arithmetics to know the longevity. Every thing from diet, to microbiome, to epigenetic (my ancestor were not born in a cage in a lab) , to hormones.
They make it so simple.

I would be cautious about making health decisions based on anyone with large Facebook groups. My evaluation criteria is what is your Phd, what research have you done, at which university do you teach, and so on.
I can spend hours on pubmed, read here and there, but this doesn't me make an expert.

Fasting has benefits. So does calories restriction and low proteins when it comes to cancer. Problem is nobody really knows that much to advocate for 36 hours every single week or even going to 72 hours.
Take it like exercise. A daily walk or weekly jogs will increase lifespan, marathon training will drastically cut it short . I apply the same principle. I do fasting from time to time, but not regularly and definitely not too long.

If anybody's theory is so simple it can be summarise in a paragraph when it comes to health, you can question it. Microcellular biology is so complicated, crazy complicated, and we still know so little.

KetoIFWinnie Thu 23-Jul-20 20:13:41

@LeGrandBleu thank you so much for typing all of that. Lot to digest. I will look on pubmed.

OP’s posts: |
LeGrandBleu Thu 23-Jul-20 21:32:48

I am enrolled in 3 clinical trials for my disease, so I read also a lot about trials and how they are designed, and this might interest you.

" Most CR (calorie restriction) studies (as well as mouse experiments in general) are designed in an ad libitum fashion; the animals can eat as much as they want. Hence, these studies may actually analyze more the effects of overfeeding, which is known to promote obesity-associated pathologies in our society [58]. " from

The gene I have a mutation in is called nf1 and it down - regulates a cellular pathway called RAS, which is undrugable so you go down stream to MEK and mTOR. Now you might not have heard of MEK but everyone in the longevity world is crazy about mTOR and its relation to longevity. MEK is hard to target but mTOR super easy, just stop eating and it will be inhibited. Problem is too much inhibition is as bad if not worse because it might not only regulate cell proliferation. In the trials for NF1, mTOR was unable to stop tumours once they were there, even at tiniest size. In children , it can prevent the tumours until it can no longer and it is like a dam collapsing. A catastrophe.

In longevity, cell cycle and cancer, it is never just one thing.

I know this is a weightloss board, but couldn't resist posting when I say your title, sorry if I go a bit sciency.

It makes me shiver when I read some of the stuff or watch some YouTube videos. And based on your user name, I guess you follow some Keto diet, so if cancer avoidance is your plan, you must be made aware of cancer dependency on iron, (again type " iron and cancer " on pubmed to read articles) so go easy on meat if you are having a lot of it.

Don't make health decision based on internet advice (mine included) , especially if they come from social medias and forums (MN included), YouTube or anyone making even a single $ from what they are preaching.

KetoIFWinnie Thu 23-Jul-20 22:24:36

Thanks again, I really do appreciate this. And yeh, some of what you say is a bit too sciency but I have heard of mTOR but not MEK. I have been taken in (?) by what SEEMED to me like one unanimous voice, that fasting was good. I did click on the links and I understood enough to see that you know what you're talking about and can back it up with links from reputable sources so I really appreciate you posting this.

I don't have a gene that I'm trying to get the better of, but there is a lot of cancer in my family and I had been assuming I'd found some golden ticket to beat it. Both grandmothers and aunts on both sides and even a maternal cousin have died of breast cancer.

You're right, I've been doing KETO for about 10 weeks and I've lost about 22lbs so that's it, I was never going to do it forever, it worked but it didn't feel that healthy to me. BMI about 23 so I'm happy with that. My plan was always to switch back to what my understanding of a low carb diet was. Not to be counting the net carbs in a courgette! or not using leeks because they're ''bad'' vegetables! That just doesn't feel right to me. I want to be able to throw in a few butter beans and a few root vegetables!. Eat a whole punnet of raspberries and not count out ten. So despite my user name, I was never going to be keto forever.

It will be no hardship to eat less meat.

I'm going to google cancer and iron.

I am very grateful you posted. Thank you for educating me. I know what you mean, I have to do my own research and not just follow any one person's advice, but I didn't even know that autophagy was in debate (wrt cancer)
You know so much! You should have a channel

OP’s posts: |
LeGrandBleu Fri 24-Jul-20 07:38:12

I started a very long sciency reply and then erased everything, and I am going to make it simple.

When you typed "leeks are bad" didn't you think it was the most ridiculous statement one could type. I am not blaming you, but the authors of that video or book that convinced you of this fact.

If you are doing all this to prevent a cancer predisposition, it couldn't be further from the truth. l
"Our findings suggest that high consumption of certain Allium vegetables, in particular garlic and leek, may reduce the risk of breast cancer" ,

You avoid leeks to lose weight, I make leeks soup when the jeans feel tight and in 24 or 48 hours, they feel right again.

I understand you are following a program to lose weight, and you are already seeing that some statements don't feel right. Eating no more than 10 raspberries . What happen if you have one more? Will that single poor raspberry compromise your weightloss?
Eating in a way that doesn't feel right isn't right.

Every program low fat, low carb, a healthy low whatever that involves you stopping eating industrial food , added sugar and change an eating behaviour will produce weightloss. A healthy low fat or a healthy low carb produce the same result. It is not me saying it or a YouTuber saying it is not true, but the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) but this article about the paper is probably easier to understand

One shouldn't eat against their instinct. Not talking of course about Cookies, chips, fried food and other junk. But not eating a raspberry? Or a leek? What harm could come from a leek or a raspberry .

I have probably confused you and I apologise. In my first post, I mentioned authors and professors which you can trust because they are published in the most famous medical journals and do not rely on YouTube videos with ads.
I have been reading Luigi Fontana for years , watch this video on longevity, especially the second half on protein and fibre.

WinnieLowCo Fri 24-Jul-20 07:57:47

You haven"t confused me too much, you have actually consolidated doubts I had about anybody eating keto forever. I know I might seem a bit fickle! One minute KetoWinnie and the next, volte face, notKetowinnie, but the truth is i was already becoming aware that this keto thing could become a disordered form of eating/an eating disorder for those inclined to latch on to the control aspect. Ie. Having SCIENCE to back up eating less than 20 g net carbs

It was precisely the thoughts "to eat that whole courgette would be bad" and "beneath ground vegetables are not keto friendly" that rang bells in my head.

Im going to go and get fresh garlic this weekend. And parsnip, because i love parsnip.

I will go back over your post for the science on my break later. But just wanted to say thank you again. My leaving cert biology will be tested to its limits! but I find i get the gist (good or bad or depends) so i am reading them.

I want to live a long and HEALTHY life much more than i want to be slim. 🍷🍀

LeGrandBleu Fri 24-Jul-20 20:41:51

You don't have to pick healthy vs slim. I have a BMI of 19, don't eat keto, but a lot of vegetables.

Borrow from the library (if they are open or doing home service as they did here in Australia during lockdown)
the anticancer way of life by Servan Schreiber. It was the first anticancer book I bought and applied the food listed in the chapter 8.

I don't eat high fat, but I don't eat high carb either, more a lot of colourful vegetables, around 20 different ones per week. , I spent a lot of time watching Dr Greger and then looking every single paper listed (he is very against any animal food, Fontana has occasional good meat, Longo is sometimes fish). I follow his advice on Flaxseed and soy , which you can look up on pubmed and it will confirm protective effect.

On soy, it is only the real food, so tofu, edamame, soy milk, but NOT the soy-derived product such as isolated soy protein which are cancer promoting.
The real food thing is important avoiding pseudo healthy food such as lentils / veggies crisps, bars. Basically the only minimally processed food I buy is soy milk and cans of legumes.

I will be hard to convince me that what I had for lunch - a red beets, tomatoes, green beans and red onions salad, with rock salt, olive oil and red vinegar - is bad for my health and that I should have eggs, bacon and sausage, especially when you see how animals are raised in their own faeces.

If you are serious about longevity, Lifespan by Sinclair is the book to read and in its section on proteins, he says: "“When we substitute animal protein with more plant protein, studies have shown, all-cause mortality falls significantly.../... “What we’re coming to learn is that mTOR isn’t impacted only by caloric restriction . If you want to keep mTOR from being activated too much or too often, limiting your intake of amino acids is a good way to start, so inhibiting this particular longevity gene is really as simple as limiting your intake of meat and dairy.”

A lot of the internet-promoted keto diet is crazy high in animal protein. David Sinclair is a Phd professor of genetics and I trust him more than a chiropractor or an instagram influencer.

In addition to salads and soups, I often have a green smoothie for breakfast like this one minus the banana . I do it in the morning and leave a jug in the fridge. Kale is a cruciferous vegetable with potent anti cancer properties with the added benefit that is is rich in carotenoids and beta-carotene, which means that the second you step in the sun, you get a lovely tan.

I don't snack and sometimes I skip dinner.
I use the free to make sure I cover all my minerals and vitamins

Last, you should do some exercise as part of your anticancer regime.

WinnieLowCo Fri 24-Jul-20 20:53:56

Thanks @legrandbleu I have watched a few david sinclair clips on youtube, and I watched the luigi fontana video last night.
I'll read the as it's breast cancer I fear I have to try to avoid.
Luckily I don't snack.
I'll have a look at that cronometer.

Thanks for all of this information. I really appreciate it.

Living and learning, but made a good start today. I don't eat til break and that was flaxseeds, coconut flakes and raspberries and a bit of greek yoghurt. Not too much. I thought it was delicious. Dinner was a sauted leeks with garlic and a few butter beans and petit pois and a bit of cashel blue crumbled over broccoli. Not sure where the anti cancer information stands on cheese. I'll find out. i like cheese much more than meat.

I'm not going to get it right over night but I'll be heading in that direction. I turned 50 in lock down so it's really on my mind now. This is it. Get it right.

WinnieLowCo Fri 24-Jul-20 20:57:22

What oil would you use to cook vegetables @LeGrandBleu ?

WinnieLowCo Fri 24-Jul-20 21:23:27

Oh I see Michael Greger wrote how not to die. I have watched this guy on youtube before.

LeGrandBleu Fri 24-Jul-20 21:33:09

Sorry, this is going to hurt... I don't eat cheese, I avoid all dairy, and only use extra virgin olive oil.
I don't eat fake vegan yoghurt, cheese as well. I do my own vegan parmesan, and I will come back with the recipe, but leaving for the gym now (it is 6.30 in Sydney)

WinnieLowCo Fri 24-Jul-20 21:36:05

Feeling a bit overwhelmed so I'm going to do my own thing with my favourite vegetables and nuts, berries, seeds, fish and a few beans until I get more confident. Just added kale to the shop. Not mad about it, or any leaves, but if its a superfood I'll acquire a taste for it.

I see michael greger's book(s) are on audible so I'm going to use a credit on ''how not to die''. Cheerful title !! But it appeals to me.

WinnieLowCo Fri 24-Jul-20 21:38:04


Sorry, this is going to hurt... I don't eat cheese, I avoid all dairy, and only use extra virgin olive oil.
I don't eat fake vegan yoghurt, cheese as well. I do my own vegan parmesan, and I will come back with the recipe, but leaving for the gym now (it is 6.30 in Sydney)

Thanks, enjoy the gym.

FuckyNel Fri 24-Jul-20 22:11:11

Kale absolute ruins my stomach! I get the most awful pains when I eat it. Is there any way to avoid this?

LeGrandBleu Sat 25-Jul-20 01:16:49

@FuckyNel what dish was it and dit you eat the hard stem? The only time I had some discomfort was when I had too many kale chips.

Kale needs preparation . You need to crush the fibre (by squeezing or " massaging" the leaves) unless you are blending it then the machine with break the fibre.

Now I am going to give you some tips and recipe which I guarantee will make kale one of your favourite.

You never eat the hard stem at the centre. Even when I prepare my smoothie, I put the leave flat on cutting board and with a sharp knife, cut along the edges of the stem.
If blending it, I just wash it and it goes straight into the blender.
If I am doing kale chips, the leaves needs to be completely dry otherwise they will be soggy and not crispy. Dry the kale with a tea towel and leave aside until totally dry.
Turn the oven on to 170 degrees fan forced
Prepare one or two baking tray and put baking paper on it.
Take the biggest bowl in your kitchen , break the leaves with your hand into medium pieces (5cm) - note flat kale is better for chips than curly kale - add 3 heaped table spoons of nutritional yeast, 1 table spoon of smocked paprika, salt, and 2 table spoon extra virgin olive oil , and then with your two hands, you need to squeeze and turn the kale to distribute the seasoning everywhere. Look at your hand, if there is hardly stuff on it, you need to add more yeast and paprika. Continue turning and squeezing the kale for a couple of minutes.
Now you must lay the kale on the tray, making sure every leave is separated (roughly) otherwise it will steam and not bake.
Bake for 10 minutes or until dry.
now, don't eat too many, because then yes you will have tummy pain.
I also enjoy kale salad. Remove hard stem, wash kale and chop it as tiny as you can (don;t use a robot, you will get pulp), putrefy in a bowl, sprinkle salt and olive oil and massage it with your hand. You must feel the fibre breaking. take a ripe tomatoes and dice it into little cubes, add some red onion or spring onion, a small dash of red wine vinegar, mix well and enjoy.

LeGrandBleu Sat 25-Jul-20 07:40:16

@KetoIFWinnie I just borrowed from the library Fontana’s new book, the path to longevity and I was quite taken aback when in the first chapter he says that vegan women have an increased risk for breast cancer.
I went to the study cited and it is actually a typo, unless of course I have misunderstood as English is not my first language. The study noted a decreased not increased risk for vegans.

I took a picture of the page and I would appreciate if you could tell me if have have misunderstood or if this is a ( massive) error in the text.

WinnieLowCo Sat 25-Jul-20 10:09:18

Well, I read the page first and it does seem to say that vegans have a higher risk for bowel cancer. But you went back to the original study and did not see that.

If I understand the text in that study it seems to say that risk for breast cancer 'can' be lower for vegans but not significantly, and the vegetarians aren't at less risk than non-vegetarians.

However, after that lack of clarity, it still says that a third of cancers could be caused by diet but then in the next breath says that research findings are not consistent.

At the bottom of that article it does say that the study group had a 20% lower risk of BC than a general population and the study group followed a range of prudent diets no one diet but had a low use of alcohol and tobacco.


I take my hat off to you wading through these articles in your second language.

FuckyNel Sat 25-Jul-20 11:20:32

@LeGrandBleu blush

I ate the whole lot


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