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Book of the Month - January 2024

By Dr. Emilie, Downtown Chiropractor

This month at Oaktree we want to talk about nutrition!

I just read “Fast Like a Girl” by Mindy Pelz. I don’t remember who recommended it, but it showed up on my holds at the library. I thought it was a book about running and wondered why I had ordered it!! Sometimes I put books on hold and there are 500 people in front of me. So who knows what I was thinking back then! ?

Well, it turns out it was a book about intermittent fasting specifically for women. Martin put me onto fasting over 10 years ago. More like a blanket thing, but I have now learned more about which time in a woman’s cycle she should and should not fast and why.

I regularly do 17 hour fasts. I had to work up to it though! I used to get light-headed if I didn’t have breakfast by 10am. Now a few times a week if I have dinner at 7/8pm, then don’t eat again until the next day lunch at 1/2pm, it’s done. Just skip breakfast. It’s become very easy for me. I’ve never thought about doing it longer or considered if there were times of the month I should be doing things differently.

A few things that really pulled me into the book were the benefits of fasting. Major benefits I had already understood are that fasting is giving your body a break and an opportunity to repair, detox, remove diseased cells and repair your mitochondria (like your batteries for your cells).

I learned more benefits in this book! Fasting (depending on length) will increase growth hormone (= fountain of youth!) will help burn fat, increase muscle growth and support brain growth. It will also increase your dopamine pathways, repair your immune system, improve your microbiome (healthy bacteria!), regenerate stem cells that line your gut and decrease cancer cells. Pretty cool!! The why behind it is all in the book.

I loved reading the (not too complicated) science behind fasting because knowing the why makes it easier for follow-through. (just like understanding chiro and acu helps you heal better and faster!)

I was also drawn in because I am in my early forties and a lot of the things they were talking about in the book about the body changing or being more resistant spoke to me.

I will be trying a longer fast this month, slowly but surely. I’ll start with a 24 hour fast this week and do an even longer one later this month.

In a nutshell:


12-16 hour fast: weight loss, decrease brain fog, increase energy

17-24 hour fast: detox, increase brain function, prevent cold, balance sex hormones

over 24 hours: gut reset

48+ hours: dopamine reset, mental health boost, decrease anxiety

72+ hours: immune reset, ease chronic conditions, prevent chronic diseases, alleviate relentless muskulo-skeletal injuries, anti-aging.

Please don’t try this cold-turkey or without help from a medical professional* + read the book!


When to fast/when not to fast:

Day 1(bleed) – 10: can fast 13-72 hrs

Day 11-15 (ovulation): max fast 13-15 hrs

Day 16-19: can fast 13-72 hours

Day 20-end: NO FASTING

Let us know if you read the book or try out fasting!


– Dr. Emilie

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