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Is intermittent Fasting Good for Weight Loss?

Over the past decade, intermittent fasting, also known as time restricted fasting, has gained popularity as a way to lose weight and mitigate health risks. Some of this is true, however as with all things that seem too good to be true there are a few things that intermittent fasting can do and a few things it can’t do.

Before you jump on the intermittent fasting bandwagon for either health or weight loss related reasons there are a few things to consider. It is true that intermittent fasting can help lower insulin levels and regulate blood sugar. It can help with appetite suppression and accelerate healing and lower inflammation. However, intermittent fasting isn’t for everyone. As far as weight loss is concerned, consistent lifestyle changes over a period of time, along with time restricted eating schedule has proven to help with weight reduction.


Leptin– Leptin is known as the appetite suppressant hormone. It is secreted by fat cells in response to an increase in insulin. In a healthy feedback loop, leptin decreases hunger.

InsulinInsulin is released by beta cells in the pancreas in response to increased blood glucose levels. In a healthy feedback loop, insulin acts like a gatekeeper by attaching to cells and allowing glucose into the cell, thereby providing energy to the cell.

GhrelinGhrelin, also known as the hunger hormone, is primarily secreted in the stomach and gastrointestinal when your stomach is empty. It tells your brain you are hungry. It also regulates insulin secretion and has a role in reducing energy expenditure. Research continues to discover many other roles that ghrelin plays in the body.

Incretin- Incretin hormones are gut peptides that are secreted after nutrient intake and stimulate insulin secretion together with hyperglycemia. GIP (glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide) und GLP-1 (glucagon-like peptide-1) are the known incretin hormones from the upper (GIP, K cells) and lower (GLP-1, L cells) gut.

The healthy leptin insulin feedback loop

In a healthy feedback loop, insulin levels rise due to food intake (which increases blood glucose), triggering fat cells to release leptin. Leptin reduces appetite. In turn, less or no food is eaten, resulting in lower blood glucose, which stabilizes insulin levels.

The unhealthy feedback loop

Persistent high levels of leptin cause cells to not be receptive to the effects of leptin. You continue to be hungry. The leptin, which is stored in your fat cells, doesn’t respond to feelings of satiety and you continue to be hungry. Insulin resistance is caused by persistent high levels of insulin. Cells don’t have gatekeepers(insulin)that allow glucose(energy) into the cell. This results in high circulating blood glucose levels.


Understanding the body weight thermostat

In a healthy feedback loop, the body weight thermostat sets the metabolism by the balance of the insulin-leptin feedback loop. Leptin goes up (reduce hunger) in response to rising insulin levels. This in turn lowers insulin levels because you aren’t eating. In this example, healthy body weight is maintained.

However, the body weight thermostat can malfunction. This happens when increased insulin levels- insulin levels that are increased over a period of months or years, cause insulin resistance. This results in weight gain.

Intermittent fasting/time restricted eating can balance insulin and blood sugar levels- if done right

Insulin is a primary driver of weight gain in many individuals. Correcting the imbalance through diet, exercise, reduced stress, and good quality sleep can reverse insulin and leptin resistance. It takes time, perseverance, education and planning to achieve optimum health and weight.

Talk with your healthcare provider before starting any time restricted fasting. Children, endurance athletes, underweight people, and women who are trying to conceive, pregnant, or breastfeeding should avoid intermittent fasting.

Fasting benefits and considerations

How and when to fast

Research shows that a 16 hour fast with 8 hour eating schedule provides the body with enough time to reset insulin levels, reduce inflammation and help the body turn fat into energy in a process called ketosis. However, it can take a while to get to that eating window. Many people start with a 10 hour fast and gradually work up to the 16/8 schedule. However, there are many ways to do intermittent fasting. Some do alternate days fasting, others have a more time restrictive fasting window. It all depends on your schedule and health status.

There are many benefits to intermittent fasting. During a state of fasting the body has energy to repair since energy isn’t being used for digestion. In addition, human growth hormone (HGH) increases dramatically, which can facilitate fat burning. Inflammatory markers, which cause many health-related problems, such as heart disease and diabetes. Increases levels of BDNF, a brain hormone called brain-derived neurotrophic factor, in which a deficiency has been implicated in depression and other psychiatric illnesses.

Fasting increases OGT enzyme

New research out of Yale University discovered an enzyme (OGT) produced in the hypothalamic region of the brain regulates the body’s homeostatic set point body weight and lipid metabolism. The enzyme, OGT, significantly increased after 24 hour fasting period in mice, leading researchers to speculate this enzyme may have use in obesity prevention.

Intermittent fasting, cortisol, and stress

Any type of stress the body experiences- whether emotional or physical increases cortisol levels.

Cortisol prepares your body to deal with stressful situations by diverting resources, such as blood sugar or glucose, to give your body the energy it needs to respond to a stressor or crisis. Cortisol raises blood sugar levels, even during periods of fasting. This can lead to storing more fat, Once the body adjusts to time restricted eating, many of these stressors will more than likely start to disappear.

Intermittent fasting and thyroid hormones

The thyroid gland, releases several hormones that regulate metabolism. Intermittent fasting can lower T3 and T4 levels, which can actually lead to weight gain. This is usually solved by a gradual lengthening of the fasting period. Since the thyroid hormone needs glucose to convert from inactive to active hormones (T4 to T3) the transition to using ketones as fuel (which form after extended time of fasting) can be a challenge. Seek professional guidance when dealing with thyroid dysfunction, either hypo or hyperthroid.

Effects of Intermittent Fasting on reproductive hormones

Hypothalamic Kisspeptin neurons and their receptors are involved with puberty and reproductive hormone regulation. During fasting, these hormones are decreased and can affect fertility.

- Brooke Lounsbury, RN

Medical Content Writer

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Cellulitis can be Life Threatening

If no medical care is available-Do all members of your family have a Jase Case?

Melissa Gilbert of Little House on the Prairie, recently posted on Instagram that she had to go to the hospital. 2 days prior, an insect bit her arm. The bite had turned red, swollen, and hot to touch. Her doctor told her to go to the ER, where she was diagnosed with cellulitis. She was put on a IV of antibiotics, Benadryl and Acetaminophen.

Years back, when I worked in a family practice clinic, I received a phone call from one of our patients, a single mom, who was camping with her 4 children outside of Disneyland. (Back then they had camping, more affordable than the hotels.) She had just spent the last 3 days going to the local walk-in clinic where she received IV antibiotics for cellulitis. She went on to tell me that she had saved for years to go on this vacation with her kids by selling Avon to finance the trip. The last Avon order had come in right before her trip. In her excitement to get orders to her customers she ripped open the box, and in doing so cardboard fibers lodged under her thumb. She removed the fibers, but the area had remained very red and swollen. She ignored the injury and went on the planned vacation, where she ended up seeking medical attention for what seemed at the time like a minor injury.

What is cellulitis and what to do if medical attention isn’t readily available?

Cellulitis is a serious infection that spreads to surrounding tissue from a break in the skin. It usually occurs around the arms and legs but can be found in other areas of the body as well. Group A Streptococcus (S. pyogenes), is the most common bacteria that causes cellulitis; however, staphylococcus bacteria can also cause cellulitis.

The bacteria enter through breaks in the skin through:

  • Cuts, bites (insect, spider animal)
  • Tattoos, piercings
  • Chronic skin conditions that compromise skin integrity and the protective barrier- eczema, athletes foot
  • Chickenpox, shingles-blisters pop which leaves skin vulnerable to infection
  • Chronic edema in lower extremities resulting in skin breakdown
  • Injection drug use and
  • Puncture wounds

Symptoms include

  • Area surrounding the wound – redness, swelling, pain and areas are warm to touch
  • Malaise, fatigue
  • In more advanced cases fever, swollen lymph glands, and elevated white blood cell count
  • If untreated it can lead to sepsis, amputation and even death.
  • Redness and swelling usually spreads rapidly-within hours

How diagnosed

Diagnosis is usually through patient history and inspection of the affected area. Wound cultures, etc. are not indicated unless unusual pathogens are suspected.

What if you suspect cellulitis?

Cellulitis can spread rapidly, within a matter of hours. If medical care is available, don’t delay. If caught in time, oral antibiotics can stop the spread in most cases. Warm compresses can help bring infection fighting cells to the area. Apply moist, warm compresses for 20 minutes up to 5 times a day along with seeking medical care.

If in doubt if cellulitis and symptoms (pain, swelling, redness) are mild: Take a marker and draw a line around the edge of the red, swollen area. Check every hour. If the redness spreads outside the boundary, seek immediate medical attention. In addition, if there is any change, necrosis (dead tissue, sometimes black) or any other types of skin breakdown, fever, chills, confusion, dizziness, seek immediate medical attention.

The following images are courtesy of NHS

What if no immediate medical care is available?

Cellulitis can quickly become life threatening. Early intervention can mean the difference between life and death.

  • Monitor all skin breaks including scrapes, cuts, insect bites – If you have young children be sure to inspect their skin on a regular basis. Look for the signs of skin infections that may possibly lead to cellulitis.
  • Maintain hygienic practices – Group A streptococcus is spread through direct contact with infected fluid/material or droplets or when coughing. Wear disposable gloves when cleansing wound, double bag all dressings and dispose of in garbage. Avoid contact with wound drainage or other fluids from area. Wash your hands thoroughly using soap and water. There is some discussion that cellulitis isn’t contagious, however always err on the side of caution and use gloves and wash hands .
  • Draw an outline with a marker around any area you have doubts about. Check hourly for redness, swelling, change in appearance of skin, blisters, necrosis (blackened skin in and surrounding skin break).
  • If redness or swelling is noted outside the marked area, contact your care provider for instructions.
  • If a care provider is not available for consult, follow the instructions in your Jase Case for skin infections/cellulitis. Doxycycline, included in the Jase Case is one of the most effective antibiotics for cellulitis.

Given all the instability in the world, while the infrastructure is still in place, prioritize and consider what would happen if the medical system went down, even for a week. Take advantage of Jase Daily and get your year supply of prescriptions and order Jase Case for every member of your family if you haven’t done so yet.

- Brooke Lounsbury, RN

Medical Content Writer

Lifesaving Medications

Everyone should be empowered to care for themselves and their loved ones during the unexpected.

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April 4th is National Vitamin C Day!

Each year this powerhouse vitamin is celebrated for all the ways it benefits our health

What is vitamin C?

Vitamin C, also known as L-ascorbic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin, meaning that it dissolves in water and does not get stored in the body. Since we are unable to produce these vitamins, they must be consumed daily.

Sources- Food and supplements

(Source from NIH fact sheet on vitamin C)

Vitamin C is found in many food sources. Probably the most well known is the citrus family. While citrus fruit contain vitamin C, there are many other sources.

Food Milligrams (mg) per serving Percent (%) DV*
Red pepper, sweet, raw, ½ cup 95 106
Orange juice, ¾ cup 93 103
Orange, 1 medium 70 78
Grapefruit juice, ¾ cup 70 78
Kiwifruit, 1 medium 64 71
Green pepper, sweet, raw, ½ cup 60 67
Broccoli, cooked, ½ cup 51 57
Strawberries, fresh, sliced, ½ cup 49 54
Brussels sprouts, cooked, ½ cup 48 53
Grapefruit, ½ medium 39 43
Broccoli, raw, ½ cup 39 43
Tomato juice, ¾ cup 33 37
Cantaloupe, ½ cup 29 32
Cabbage, cooked, ½ cup 28 31
Cauliflower, raw, ½ cup 26 29
Potato, baked, 1 medium 17 19
Tomato, raw, 1 medium 17 19
Spinach, cooked, ½ cup 9 10


Other sources include rose hips (made into tea), sauerkraut, and supplements such as sodium ascorbate; calcium ascorbate; other mineral ascorbates; ascorbic acid with bioflavonoids.

A study revealed Liposomal vitamin C  is more bioavailable for the body. Liposomes are tiny, nano-sized bubbles normally made out of sunflower lecithin that mimic the body’s own cell membranes. It is absorbed directly into the cells compared to the bloodstream with supplemental vitamin C.

Health benefits

Increases iron absorption in foods

A recent study concluded that taking supplemental vitamin C with an iron supplement did not increase iron absorption.

Taking supplemental vitamin C along with iron rich non heme (not animal source) foods, such as  dried beans, nuts, grain products increased iron absorption.

However, when food sources of both vitamin C and iron are consumed iron absorption increased.

Vitamin C also:

  • Helps activate B vitamins
  • Is an antioxidant, neutralizing free radicals
  • Modulates natural killer (NK) cells
  • and stimulates immune system,
  • Provides protection against oxidative stress
  • Reduce heavy metal toxicity
  • Production of collagen
  • Aids in wound healing
  • Natural antihistamine
  • Lessens duration of colds
  • Improve insulin resistance and stabilize glucose levels


Supplementation should be considered only if you are not able to consume enough vitamin C rich foods. Since there are so many versions of vitamin C on the market the following table, obtained from the NIH should be used as a guide only. Most supplements contain ascorbic acid which as been found to be the purest form.

Age     Male   Female Pregnancy     Lactation

0–6 months   40 mg*         40 mg*                  

7–12 months  50 mg*         50 mg*                  

1–3 years       15 mg 15 mg          

4–8 years       25 mg 25 mg          

9–13 years     45 mg 45 mg          

14–18 years   75 mg 65 mg 80 mg 115 mg

19+ years       90 mg 75 mg 85 mg 120 mg

Smokers        Individuals who smoke require 35 mg/day more vitamin C than nonsmokers.

If taken as a supplement, vitamin C should be taken in the morning or during the day, not at night, especially in people with GERD as this can make symptoms worse.

Vitamin C deficiency

Symptoms of vitamin C deficiency include:

Fatigue, inflammation and/or bleeding of the gums, brittle nails and hair, bruising easily, iron deficient anemia, and joint pain.

Vitamin C deficiency is unusual in developed countries; however some diseases can deplete vitamin C stores and lead to deficiency. Individuals with irritable bowel disease, celiac or other forms of intestinal inflammation are at risk for vitamin C deficiency.

Side effects of vitamin C supplementation

It is almost impossible to get too much vitamin C from diet alone. There are several side effects from taking vitamin C in supplement form. In most cases, excess vitamin C is excreted in urine within 24 hours. Some side effects are:

  • Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea
  • Heartburn
  • Stomach cramps or bloating
  • Headache
  • Skin flushing
  • Insomnia
  • Fatigue

Who should not supplement with vitamin C?

Consult with your primary care provider about vitamin C supplementation if:

  • Kidney disease or a history of kidney stones
  • Hereditary iron overload disorder (hematochromatosis)
  • Smoker (may need more than stated dose)

- Brooke Lounsbury, RN

Medical Content Writer

Lifesaving Medications

Everyone should be empowered to care for themselves and their loved ones during the unexpected.

Recent Posts

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Join Our Newsletter

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Don’t Get Complacent- Avoid Prepping Burnout

5 Tips to get back on track to self-sufficiency.

Its that time of year again. Tax time, Spring break, plans for summer vacation, getting your garden started,playing and working outdoors are all forefront in our minds.

Oh yes, and pending war, famine, next pandemic, social unrest, solar flares, record breaking weather patterns (tornados in the South, epic rainfall and snow in the West), food and gas prices spiraling out of control, bank failures, supply chain disruptions. In fact, probably the most disturbing news so far came from the World Economic Forums’ Global Cybersecurity Outlook 2023 report where 86% Business and 93% of cyber leaders believe global geopolitical instability is moderately or very likely to lead to a catastrophic cyber event in the next two years. A mass cyber event would have far-reaching and untold hardship in ways we can’t even comprehend.

Let us not forget our medical system

 Our medical system is now at tipping point leading to total collapse.  Hospitals closing, staff shortage, medical device shortage,( Cardiac diagnostic, and monitoring products, Specimen collection – testing supplies and equipment, Radiological devices, General ICU/ hospital products) the inability to perform procedures due to shortages of medications and instruments.

Overwhelmed? Now is NOT the time to shut down

As the war drums continually beat, as high food, energy and gas prices steadily climb to new highs, and as we face the reality that our medical system is in crisis, this isn’t the time to be complacent.

Breaks and vacations are important but don’t live there

Take a break from the noise of all the crises but don’t let this become your “new normal”. In fact, short vacations, hobbies, time with family and friends are vital to overall health and wellbeing. Schedule time away from screens and technology. Information overload causes us to feel we are powerless. This leads to complacency and the inability to think clearly. The survival of our families is dependent on our ability to navigate this unchartered territory.

We are entering a time never seen before in the history of the world.

Our global economy and trade have positioned us in a very precarious position; one where we may feel powerless. This couldn’t be further from the truth. We have amazing, untapped talents and abilities we never knew we had until we decide to get back in the game.

5 tips to get back on the track to preparedness and self-sufficiency

  1. Attitude is everything

Everything we believe we can or can’t do starts with attitude. Attitude can move mountains. By focusing on solutions instead of allowing the media and others to pull you down, step away from the negativity and work out ways to overcome obstacles. If the obstacle is too big, shelve it and revisit at a later date.

Start your day off on the right foot, and continue.

  • The first hour upon awakening sets the tone for the rest of your day. Stay off your phone that first hour. Instead, meditate, pray, reflect on what you are grateful for and if able get some natural first morning sunlight.
  1. Prioritize your day, week, month and year. Set realistic goals.

Set aside uninterrupted time to prioritize goals. Start by writing down the goals, then prioritizing them. Which are the most pressing and important? Number them, starting with #1 as the most important and pressing. Do you have a goal of paying off debt? Weight loss? Finishing a project or starting a hobby? Do you want to eat better within an already strained budget?

The SMART acronym

A very popular tool for goal setting.

Specific- Narrow down what goal you wish to achieve, take time evaluating the goal.

Measurable- Is the goal measurable? For instance, if you want to lose weight, how much?

Achievable- Is the goal realistic and achievable. Some of this is based on your attitude and ability to achieve the goal. Do you feel you can achieve the goal and do you have the resources and tools needed?

Relevant- Is your goal relevant in your life? For instance, would losing 10 pounds add value to your quality of life?

Time-bound- Make sure your goal has a completion date. This can be modified as needed as you work towards achieving your goal.

  1. Be flexible but stay the course

Life happens, roll with the punches, but always go back and reflect on your reasons for why you are preparing. If you need to step away for a time, go ahead, but don’t make this a permanent way of life. It you have experienced major life changes it is time to refocus and reevaluate your goals and get back on track as soon as you are able.

  1. If it was easy, everyone would do it

The discipline, focus, drive and determination needed to prepare for our uncertain future isn’t an easy road but it will be rewarding and bring peace of mind. You can’t possibly do everything. Find others that are like minded that can help fill in the gaps for you and reciprocate. Check with local emergency responder groups, gardening and livestock communities along with family friends and neighbors for support. We aren’t an island. We need each other now more than ever before.

  1. Be an example. Be a leader

People are watching us even if we don’t realize it. We will inspire others more through our actions than any other way. As more people come together to solve local and regional problems facing all of us, we will all not just survive but thrive while navigating the waters of the unknown,

By the way, have you ordered your Jase Case for each member of your family yet?

- Brooke Lounsbury, RN

Medical Content Writer

Lifesaving Medications

Everyone should be empowered to care for themselves and their loved ones during the unexpected.

Recent Posts

Keeping you informed and safe.

Join Our Newsletter

Our mission is to help you be more medically prepared. Join our newsletter and follow us on social media for health and safety tips each week!

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