ProLon: Our Fasting Mimicking Diet Review from a Functional Medicine Doctor and Health Coach
Do Fasting Mimicking Diets Work?
If you’re like most people, the idea of a 5-day ProLon fasting mimicking diet sounds like pure torture. And I won’t lie to you—it’s not easy. That being said, there is growing scientific evidence regarding the benefits of occasional fasting, and it’s that evidence that ultimately swayed me to try ProLon for the first time in February of 2017, that and the fact that my husband Carlos (or Dr. Jorge for many of you) was dragging his feet.
Yep, Carlos was iffy about doing a fast for the first time, and this wasn’t just any fast. It was a fasting mimicking diet, which means you still get to eat every day! But Carlos couldn’t wrap his head around the whole no exercise and no alcohol thing, and calorie restriction is never fun.
Our ProLon Review
Carlos first learned about ProLon in December of 2016. I distinctly remember him calling me from the A4M functional medicine conference he was attending out in Las Vegas two weeks before Christmas (such a convenient time of year for a spouse to be gone, right?). We were catching up about his day, and he kept talking about how impressed he was with the talk Valter Longo, PhD had given, so impressed he was going to order some of his ProLon fasting mimicking diet kits for us to try. I heard the word “diet” and told Carlos that he could order them for himself, that I wanted nothing to do with it.
To this day, I have never been on a diet per se and would go so far as to say I am “anti-diet.” My mom had untreated anorexia, so I watched her perpetually starve herself for years upon years. She ultimately lost her battle with cancer when she was 59, and I have always wondered if the outcome might have been different had her body not been so malnourished 😥
And then there’s the other extreme—obesity—which we now know is a symptom of malnourishment as well. In my opinion, our country wouldn’t be facing an obesity epidemic if fad diets really worked over the long term.
So why did I ultimately try ProLon if I am anti-diet?
It’s not a “diet” per se. It’s a temporary tool to reset your body.
The 3 ProLon boxes Carlos had ordered while at that functional medicine conference had been cluttering my pantry for over 2 months, and we had spent a lot of money on them. Since each box contains 5 days worth of food, they are not small, and I kept bumping into them every time I opened the pantry. I wanted them gone.
I read Valter Longo’s book The Longevity Diet to understand the science behind his fasting mimicking protocol. The idea that occasional calorie restriction could even benefit people who maintain a healthy weight was new to me. I was about to turn 45, and stem cell regeneration sounded like a good idea prior to my 45th. Bring on the anti-aging!
Carlos needed a nudge and an accountability partner.
I wanted us to put ourselves through the paces before recommending ProLon to any of Carlos’ patients.
So the week before my 45th birthday, Carlos and I started ProLon together. Not even 12 hours later, Carlos was “supplementing” his Day 1 box with tortilla chips and salsa. Ha! He completely fell off the wagon. I persisted and made it through the entire 5 days without cheating. That drove Carlos nuts. He’s super competitive, so competitive, in fact, that we have agreed never to play Scrabble again to preserve our marriage 😂
Since that time, Carlos has successfully completed ProLon twice, and I have completed 5 cycles. ProLon is not for everyone because there is no one-size-fits all solution for better health. In fact, one of our coaches at Companion Health’s recently dropped out after 3 days of ProLon because she started experiencing significant stomach upset.
Why ProLon works for me
Everything I need for the 5 days comes in the box, even supplements. No extra shopping, planning, or chopping is required!
The meals taste better than expected—tomato soup is my personal favorite.
Meal prep is a cinch, so I get an extended break from the usual Jorge dinner dash and kitchen clean up.
I take a forced break from running. Dr. Longo does not recommend you do strenuous exercise during the fast, so if anything, I take leisurely walks versus my usual 6-mile runs days 2-5, and again on day 6 which entails a transition back to regular food.
My body feels great afterwards, and although I miss eating fresh food Days 1-5, I don’t physically feel all that hungry over the course of the program.
1 cup of black coffee is allowed in the morning!
My ProLon tips
I schedule it in my calendar ahead of time, making sure to block out mealtime meetings while I’m on the fast. Who wants to go to a restaurant and watch someone else eat when you’re fasting? Not me!
I plan and shop for my kids’ meals ahead of time, so I spend minimal time in the kitchen and can avoid going to the grocery store.
I do something leisurely for myself on day 4 or day 5, like getting a massage.
I tell other people I am doing the fast, which helps hold me accountable.
I prep the L-drink the night before and leave the tea bags seeping in it overnight in the fridge.
Results from this Fasting Mimicking Diet
The million dollar question: do you lose weight on ProLon?
This past August 24-28, Carlos and I joined several Companion Health team members and clients in a ProLon fast. How did everyone do?
That is success in my book!
A fast that is approved by a functional medical doctor
At Companion Health, we help you navigate fad from science. We are here to support you every step of the way on your journey to optimal health, including making dietary decisions that are safe for you. If you’re interested in learning more about our programs and if ProLon may be a good fit for you, click here to schedule your free 15-minute consultation.
To learn even more about the science behind ProLon, check out this podcast.
Update on fasting mimicking diets that work:
We recently launched our own DIY fasting mimicking diet that is done in 3 days vs. 5 days. The other differentiator? You make all of the foods (and it’s very doable) instead of eating packaged/powdered foods.
Nathalie Simmons Jorge is a UNC-Chapel Hill MBA, serial entrepreneur, and health coach with a passion for nutrition, home cooking, organic gardening, and balanced living. Nathalie enjoys helping clients define their goals and achieve success by implementing sustainable lifestyle changes that work best for them.
This is for general informational purposes only and does not constitute any practice of medicine or professional health care services of any type. The use of information on this blog is at the user’s own risk. The content of this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, for diagnosis, or for treatment. Please seek the care of your health care professionals for any questions or concerns.