Megan’s Ketogenic Challenge – September Update

By Jason Fung, MD

Sorry I haven’t posted in awhile everyone.  Things have been very busy – both good and bad.  Today I will share my September update with you all.


Back in August I decided to commit myself fully to a ketogenic lifestyle after always using every celebration or meal out with friends as an excuse to indulge (Megan’s Ketogenic Challenge).  I was feeling warn down and was unable to keep up with my daily routine.  I felt like the walking dead most of the time.   The final kick in the butt to get me on track was watching my patients come in all summer looking and sounding like I was.  All of the parties and celebrations.  The good and bad in life keeping them from taking care of themselves.  I was getting so frustrated because a lot of these people are unwell, and I knew that the roller coaster of life would continue from year to year.  They needed to stick to the diet no matter what to retain their health.

Each day I would encourage these patients to get back on track and do their best to make this a lifestyle change rather than a diet they do intermittently.  I felt like a total hypocrite.  I wasn’t taking my own advice – and it was evident by my appearance.  How could I expect these patients of ours to have this healthy lifestyle we encourage when I wasn’t even doing it myself?  I wouldn’t go to a hairdresser with a bad haircut, so why would anyone take lifestyle advice from someone who looks like the living dead?  I’ve had fatty liver disease, polycystic ovarian syndrome, borderline diabetes, heart issues and have combated cancer cells.  I was just as unhealthy.  It was time for me to make a change.  I ended the month of July with a 84 hour water fast and was in full blown ketosis by August 1st.

A lot of patients and IDM followers have asked me why I chose the middle of summer and didn’t just wait until September so I could ‘enjoy’ the rest of my summer.  Like many of you, I have always had the ‘I’ll start on Monday’ or ‘I’ll be fully committed next month’ or even worse ‘2017 is only a few months away’.  It was time for me to develop better habits.  Come hell or high water I was going to start this in the middle of summer.


Since my last update at the end of August , I have attended three weddings,  travelled to Orlando to spend time with my in-laws over the Labour Day long weekend, my husband relocated from California to Toronto, and had had a cancer screening test that came back negative (this was both wonderful and incredibly stressful at the same time).  All very wonderful  things.  Wonderful things usually come with lots of celebrations.  The past month as been a virtual non-stop party.

Life has also been crummy.  My nephew nearly died during delivery and so did his mom.  It was an emergency c-section at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto.  Everything ended up being OK eventually, but shortly after they got home he ended up back in the hospital with liver complications.  We were all incredibly worried, especially since he was without oxygen for a while prior to his delivery.  Both mom and baby are home and well now.

Another relative of mine, who is 22-years-old,  was playing basketball and his heart stopped.  Luckily, he was at a community centre and someone next door was teaching a CRP class.  They weren’t sure at the time how effective the CPR was, and his heart was stopped when EMS arrived.  They restarted his heart at the hospital within 25 minutes of him collapsing and put him in an induced coma for 24 hours.  He came out of his coma in about 36 hours and was able to move his eyes and squeeze his hands.  He’s now talking and walking.  The doctor says it is a miracle he is alive.

Life has been a real hoot this month.

My Progress

Despite all of the good and the bad, I completely stuck to my ketogenic diet.  And do you know what?  It was easy.  It was really, really easy.  This is coming from one of the greatest stress eaters on the planet.  I didn’t fully realize how much my body had changed until I was at the hospital with my nephew at 12:00 AM on a Wednesday morning and there were bags of Doritos and potato chips around me and all I wanted was some jasmine green tea.  I needed jasmine green tea.  I don’t know why but my body was begging for it.  It was the strangest feeling not to be stuffing my face with potato chips.  Despite losing a ton of weight and doing moderate LCHF over the last four years, I had never been able to conquer my carbohydrate binges during stressful times.  It was truly amazing to realize I finally have control over my body.

I was able to maintain at least three separate 24 hour fasts each week.

My ketones ranged from 0.4 to 2.8 mmol/L.  My average for the month was 1.7 mmol/L.  It wasn’t my best month but I was in nutritional ketosis every single day.

My Body:
I definitely didn’t drop a pound or an inch this month, but I maintained.  My body was pumping out a lot of cortisol this month.  Also, all of the celebrations lead me to eat a lot.  Mind you, I ate a ton of fat, but I ate a ton of fat.

Now that things have settled, I plan on doing a 5 day fast next week to help get all of my hormones back in-check.   I promise that I will be back to blogging each and every Tuesday moving forward!  Feel free to follow what I’m eating on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter after my 5 day fast next week!  I will be posting pictures of my meals along with my macro breakdowns.

Previous Post: Megan’s Ketogenic Challenge – August

By The Fasting Method

For many health reasons, losing weight is important. It can improve your blood sugars, blood pressure and metabolic health, lowering your risk of heart disease, stroke and cancer. But it’s not easy. That’s where we can help.

Jason Fung, MD

By Jason Fung, MD

Jason Fung, M.D., is a Toronto-based nephrologist (kidney specialist) and a world leading expert in intermittent fasting and low-carb diets.

Share this article with a friend

More articles you might enjoy…