Yesterday morning, I was halfway into day 11 of my fast. I felt good, no problems at all. I had some water in the morning and took the medications that I take in the morning. No issues. I had a meeting scheduled with a fellow that is a good friend on Facebook.
We were scheduled to meet at Victoria Plaza at 10 AM. At about 9:15, I left the house and walked up to NCCC Mall (about a half mile). I have been doing some serious walking during this fast, up to 5-mile walks, so this half mile was only a short walk. I intended to catch either a jeepney or a taxi there, it is kind of a transportation hub there. When I got to the area where the transport vehicles stop, I started feeling a bit dizzy and quickly I felt very dizzy. I walked over to a place where there was a telephone pole, I needed something to lean on or I would fall. I was thinking that I would probably just go home, but I felt too bad to even do that. The last thing I remember was that I decided to call Feyma, but I didn’t even get my phone out of my pocket.
After that, the next thing I remember, somebody was shaking me and saying “Sir, do you need help?” I said (stupidly) “No, I am fine, thank you.” The person left. Then, I started looking around and I realized that I was laying on the ground, in the dirt. I had to stop and think to realize where I was and what I was doing there. I decided to get up, and as I started getting up another person came rushing over and assisted me. He asked, “Sir, are you drunk?” I said, “No, I don’t drink.” Then “Do you have high blood?” “No, I don’t, but I have been fasting for the past 10 days.” I thanked him profusely for his help, and there were some tricycles there, so I got one of them to take me home (only 5 minutes or so on a trike).
Firstly, I am glad that I did not die. Secondly, I am glad that I did not get robbed or even killed by somebody wanting to take advantage of me.
When I got home, I basically could not function at all. I was too weak to even take a shower (I was covered in dirt). I had to sit in the shower and my wife washed me. I tried eating some broth, and a few other things, but it made me nauseous. I had checked my blood sugar and it was fine 94. I decided I better check my blood pressure, and my meter could not read it, it just said “Error” every time I tried. This immediately started me thinking I had a blood pressure problem. About 15 minutes later (this was already an hour plus after I got home), I was feeling a bit better and tried to check my BP again, it was 80/40. That is low. I checked it again like 30 minutes later and it was 95/70, still a bit low for me, but almost normal, and headed in the right direction.
On Tuesday, I had a doctor visit with Dr. Ho, my endocrinologist, and everything checked out fine, he said I was doing excellent, and I was OK to continue fasting. Yesterday, and even this morning, I was feeling great.
After those 2 BP checks, I talked to a doctor. I wanted to be sure it would be OK for me to sleep, you know if you have a head injury or something they say don’t sleep. I had no head injury, but I did not know if fainting would also follow that rule. The doctor said it would be good for me to rest. I slept for 4 hours and woke up feeling pretty good.
Later, the doctor confirmed that the fainting was BP related. I had recently started using Carvedilol because it kept my heart rate slower, and that was recommended. I need to go in and get my BP medication worked out (or possibly eliminated entirely). I will do that soon.
I am weak now but feel pretty good considering what I went through.
The doctor does not feel that my diet or fasting played a role, or at least not a huge role in this. It is probably somewhat related in that the diet and fasting have been very good for my health in that it eliminated a lot of health problems, including making my BP more or less normal. We just are going to have to work out the meds to do what is good for my heart, and also good for my health.
I did break the fast after all of this, it was the wise thing to do (remember, Dr. Fung’s policy, listen to your body, and my body was sending a massive signal yesterday). I told Jeff, my Doctor friend, that I am not going to do a planned 30 days fast we had talked about doing in about a week, and after hearing of my ordeal, he said that he is not either. We both agreed, we will do shorter fasts, maybe 3 to 5 days will be the max. For now, I will just eat for at least a few days, or whatever my body tells me it wants.
Frankly, what happened has scared the hell out of me. I am not scared of the fasting, but maybe a little more respectful of treating my body right. I feel that the fasting is treating my body right, and don’t feel that it caused the problem… but it just reminds me to be cautious.
I also feel that another thing that played a big role in this is some severe stress that I have been under due to some family issues.
Anyway, I just wanted to update those who are reading this site. I will be back to fasting! Everything I am doing is medically supervised, so I have full confidence.
Glad it wasnt that serious.
I think it was pretty serious, but it passed! 🙂 I’m glad I am still alive!
Low blood pressure is pretty scary….and dangerous!! I’m so glad that you are recovering!!
just take it easy mate….its a warning of some sort, whatever is causing your stress i hope you can alleviate it.
Kate Kohlschmidt Yeah, I can tell that it was quite dangerous! And very scary too. I am glad that it all worked out OK, and I will need to get my medications adjusted or possibly totally eliminated. The fasting and diet and lowered my blood pressure, so I should have taken that into account!
David Smith I believe that the stressful situation was resolved yesterday afternoon, so that is out of the way, I hope. Yep, I got the signal loud and clear!
Hala ka Bob! I had one episode like that at Greenhills. My BP was very low
Mumay Develos Torres
If I may ask, what causes low BP? Meds po ba?
Hi Violet VL. It was very scary, and I hope I never experience that again!
Hi Mumay. Through my weight loss, a good diet and fasting, my blood pressure was naturally going lower, but I did not monitor it enough to know that my medications needed to be lowered.
Mumay Develos Torres
I can telate to that Bob
Mumay Develos Torres
Thanks for this honest blog. Good thing you are ok. Maybe pushing yourself too much? Take care always!
Probably I was pushing too hard, Mumay! That is why I am going to lower my fasting, do shorter fasts. I will be monitoring my BP closer too!
Take care Bob! You are an inspiration. And thank you for this infoblog…
Thank you so much, Cathy! I am just doing my best to improve my health!
Take good care Bob. I know you do and will, but you say it yourself:
Listen to your body, it will surely tell you what you need.
Ignoring signals the body send is dangerous.
Fasting is good, but the body do need it’s things to work with.
Anyway, i know you are very much aware of these things, so take it easy and follow your instinct 🙂
Thanks Axel. Yep, you gotta listen to what your body tells you, and that is what I do! 🙂
So sorry to hear Bob. That was a huge scare!! Glad you made it through it. Will keep your health and stress in my prayers.
It really was a huge scare, Rene. Thanks for your support and your prayers!
Bob Martin , You are most welcome Sir!
Wow scary Bob, glad your ok.
Believe me, Jim, I am glad about that too! 🙂
I’m glad you’re ok. as you said, listen to your body
Listening to my body is kind of a policy that I have been following pretty strictly. I have shortened fasts before at times when I felt my body was signalling that I had gone far enough. Yesterday the signal did not come, though, until right before the event!
Glad you are feeling better. We need you!
I am feeling much better, David. Thank you.
Bob please always care full
Yes, I am careful! I just did not get the warning yesterday until it was too late! 🙂
Ruth Rocacurva Castillo
That was scary Bob. Maybe do things in moderation. Your fasting included.
Yeah, that is kind of what I said in the article, that I am going to limit my fasts to only 3 to 5 days now. Yesterday I was on day 11 of the fast. But,t he fast did not directly cause the fainting. Still, it is good to be cautious.
“Firstly, I am glad that I did not die. Secondly, I am glad that I did not get robbed or even killed by somebody wanting to take advantage of me.”
Did you really think that this was a danger? Seems like the folks just were concerned about you and wanted to help.
I think that anytime you are incapacitated in public, there is a possibility of danger there. But, I was very lucky that the people were very kind and did what they could to take care of me. I’m thankful for that.
Scary, indeed! Glad you’re feeling better, Bob.
Me too Elsie. Thank you.
Take care, man. I agree with the others that perhaps you went at it a bit too hard.
I saw this post pop up in a friends feed. I take the same medications as well as others due to a heart attack I had at 39 in 2010. Its also known as Coreg. I no longer work in a career that exposes me to hot weather for long periods of time because it made me sick and this med is a major factor with that issue.I also had to be careful with what combination of other meds I took with it because it would drop my blood pressure too low. I have been unable to fast at all while I’ve been on it. I have to take it though as I did incur damage and it helps my heart beat strong and protect it.
Hi David – Nice to meet you. I live in the Philippines, so I am pretty much constantly exposed to hot weather, 12 months of the year. I had a heart attack and quadruple bypass last year, but I am doing great since then. It sounds like our need for the BP medication is the same, it is more to protect our hearts than to actually lower the BP. Good luck to you.
Jeez Bob! I thank God that you’re alright. I’m glad it wasn’t serious enough to cause any organ damage. As for your meds, a good, deep search about side effects from users always helps. Take care of yourself Bob! We’ve another meeting later this year and Davao needs their resident Santa 🙂
Thanks, Philip. Don’t worry, I always try to take care of myself! Looking forward to meeting you again!
Rue Rivera Ramas
I relate to this, Bob. It happened to me last February when I was too dizzy for a week. My neurologist had to replace my bp maintenance to Valsartan… the previous one caused my weakening of the heart. After lab, we found out that I had high sugar of 200. So the internist increased my Galvus maintenance. I am now fit to travel but still afraid to do so. I thought I was dying when I could not even lift a finger for a week. Scary for my age.
Hi Rue, thank you for sharing that. About 3 years ago I had a time when I was getting dizzy due to low blood pressure, and had to get my medicines adjusted. It sure was bad yesterday, though! Luckily my blood sugar is no longer a concern, it is quite good now. Good luck to you Rue.
Rue Rivera Ramas
Glad you didn’t hit your head when you fell that’s a good thing.
Yeah! About the only thing I can see is a bruise on my stomach (small one), and a scrape under my arm. Nothing else.
Terry L Snyder
Worried about you Bob. Blood pressure meds and heart medication can have side effects especially since you are losing weight yet they become more powerful as the body volume changes. How about your hydration? Did you have enough fluids to keep your BP stable? Glucose looks great. BP was way too low. Praying for you Bob.
Yep, because of losing weight, those medications need adjustment.. that is what I am doing now! 🙂 Thanks for your concern, I appreciate it.
Keep doing what you’re doing Bob, a massive change for you, I love it!!!!
Thanks, Tommy. I will push forward, but with caution. 🙂
You are doing great and your body is adjusting just as good!!
Yes, I am making big changes, so I can’t expect my body to adapt instantly!
Glad you are ok Bob scary indeed
I am too, Wayne! 🙂 Thanks.
Bob how soon after taking your BP meds did you got for a walk ? if taking on an empty stomach you will get a spike in the effect of the BP meds which may explain quite a lot
It was about an hour after taking the medication. Since I was fasting, yes, the medication was taken on an empty stomach, except for the water in my stomach.
while waiting change BP meds,, maybe half your dose and see how it goes
I did that this morning, thanks!
I take BP meds also,, whenever I get dizzy I cut back a bit on next dose,, kind of have to play it by ear and check BPO daily or more, a few times a day
That is a good idea, I think, and that is what I have done.
I noticed the same with atenolol here..a beta blocker.
William Burrows I used Atenolol in the past, but the doctors switched me to Carvedilol last year after my heart attack. They are similar, but the carvedilol is supposed to have better heart benefits.
3-5 day fasts sound more reasonable to me.10 days seems like a stretch to me Bob, but then again, I’m not a medical professional.
I have done 3 10 day fasts with no problems, but my intention, at least for now, is to go for 3 to 5. We shall see what happens!
Scary. Glad you are ok
Its most likely your beta blocker. When your bp normalizes, a further depression will cause hypotension, thus, the fainting. Many would advise to wean yourself slowly off it. In my case, i tried but it makes my bp erratic and withdrawal is really bad. It would probably be good to take a lower dose and take it at a different time when your bp is usually elevated and not when your bp is already low. Anyway, best to talk it out with your doc. Stay well and God bless sir.
Thank you Jabez, I appreciate your input, that means a lot to me. I started this morning taking the beta blocker in half tablet dosages twice a day instead of a full tablet in the morning. So far that seems to be helpful.
Hi Bob – I am glad that you are ok now after that scary event. Take things easy and monitor what is happening to your blood pressure and you should be ok. An adjustment of your medications may help big time too. Best wishes for you in the future.
Thank you for your well wishes, Richard! I appreciate it.
Wow. Glad you’re feeling better.
I do feel pretty good today! A few aches and pains.
I suffer from diabetes and hypertension, and I’ve had incidents like this, and sometimes it’s caused by an electrolyte imbalance, specifically, sodium. When you perspire in warm weather you lose more sodium than usual (ever notice that sweat tastes salty?) and this will definitely cause disorientation, passing out, etc. I once passed out three times in one day in winter time (January) from being in hot, stuffy locations. It’s always important to maintain fluids, ESPECIALLY when taking BP meds as many of them affect your electrolytes. Good luck Bob, and happy to read you are ok!
Hi Jerome, I have been using (based on the advice of my doctor) Himalayan Pink Salt to keep my electrolytes in check. I am very sure (and my doctors agree) that this was an incident of low blood pressure. One doctor feels that it also included dehydration, although I am not sure on that.
Whew!!!! Glad all is well. I can relate to scary.
Very scary. I am glad too!
makes one think what may happen if a person was driving when this occurred
I’d probably be dead if I was driving. But, I don’t drive anymore, so that’s not a big deal.
great point! and thank God!
That was scary Bob, glad everything worked out. Do you think your fasting was a little aggressive?
I think it is more that I should have paid more attention to my medications.
Ok, take care and regards to Feyma and the rest of the family.
Thank you Mars.
Sharon de Piolenc
Bob! You scared me!
Scared me big time Sharon.
Sharon de Piolenc
Bring Feyma with you Bob.
Feyma is leaving g next week for 5 months in the States.
Sharon de Piolenc
Oi! You will be missing her.
Glad to hear you are doing better Bob.Take care
I am pretty happy about that as well! 🙂
That happened to me over there also Bob i passed out in a casino in Cebu the conclusion was i had stick blood or to many red blood cells.It took a year to get back on my feet .My nervous system was all messed up from being inconsous.
Hi Maynard, that is interesting. I just had a complete blood test workup done two days before, so it should have all been good, but who knows?
Well i hope you dont have that again Bob.I also know like in Cebu the barometric pressure is like living 5000 ft high on a mountain which can affect people .
Bob you need always have someday w/ you.It was happened to Michael. Scary..
I hope Mike is doing well!
Yeah his ok .
OMG! ð²Try 5:2 instead ð might help. Fasting for a month and you just undergo a surgery?ð£ Scary… you must be wise sometimes, Bob. Health wise. Take care. GB
I did not fast for a month. Just 8 days.
Take care Bob, you can meet that fellow later, I know him and there will be time later to meet up.
LOL. Thanks James.
You take care Bob. .that sounded like a warnng…
Will do, friend.
We look forward to seeing you again in October my friend. pagayo ayo diha…
That will be great fun.
Glad you are ok brother. Whoa
Take care, Bob.
Thank you Cathy. I feel much better today.
Nene Urbiztondo Dimmick
that was scary, Bob! glad you’re ok!
For sure. Very scary.
ok I maybe wrong but I remember you had a surprise you would reveal later, was it that your 10 day fast, was going to be a 15-20 day fast?
well it was good that this happened there where you dont drive all the time like here in the usa. if that happened while you we behind the wheel of a car this could have been pretty bad.
but it is great that this was just you body going to a normal condition, hopefully your doctor will adjust or just stop the meds.
This was not the thing I was going to reveal, but, that’s already out there anyway. I was going to go for a 100 day fast, but I decided against it now.
100 days?!?! sometimes it is too much of a good thing.
i think it would take years of practice and experiance to get to the magic number of 40 days. I say that magic number becaulse there are many passages in the bible about leaders going into the wilderness to fasting for 40 days, it is doable but we got to start with baby steps.
good luck and keep working it
Glad you’re doing good Bob Martin. Take care.
Thank you Toti.
Glad your ok Bob,take it easy and yes listen to your body.
I echo the thoughts and concerns of your friends and followers. Please consider wearing or carrying a “medic alert” type bracelet or card. In your article, you said someone asked if you were intoxicated, a natural conclusion for many. Providing your medical history, current meds, an emergency contact, your doctor’s name, etc… My Wife practically insists I have someone with me at all times… strength in numbers. Not always possible or desirable, but safer for us in most cases.
That’s a good idea, but I don’t think I’ve ever even seen a Medic Alert bracelet here, not sure if people would even know what it is. It’s something to look into though.
I considered that. I wear one only alerting others that I’m an organ donor. During my recent 45-day stay, I believe only my closest relatives inquired. You would have to consider something more obvious and likely translatable into Bisayan, but it’s something to consider.
A few of my philippino friends have their blood type and serious conditions tattoo’d underneath where they wear their watch. Often, if a medic does take you away, they will steal your watch. At least will see your condition.
Bob Martin, Glad you are alright! Thank God it was only low blood pressure.
Wow you are sure lucky that it wasn’t worse then it was .. I’m glad it all worked out fo0r you in the end ..
Yes, lucky indeed.
Will N Em
Glad you’re ok Bob. Geeze!
Will N Em
Millet Aviles Ty
happy to know you’re okay. and yes, listen to your body
Thank you Millet.
Bob, accidents happen too quickly, quicker than a lightning and you would never know…but that incident indeed helped you to be more cautious…God is good Bob!
I think that is true, Coi. Thanks for stopping by.
I don’t understand why people do strenuous things while fasting. All the old school gurus say to rest and take it easy while fasting. I notice some people actually do things like kayaking. Crazy. But Im glad you are OK.
Working out in a fasted state is fairly common now and actually in most cases it is a good thing. Our bodies produce a huge spike in growth hormone while fasting, and workouts done in a fasted state are very beneficial. Many Olympic teams are working out in a fasted state now as well as other types of athletes.
Oh good heavens!!! Glad you are ok!
Me too, that’s for sure.
Lorie E Framness
Oh! Bob…. Can only help by sending prayers for you. You be careful and be safe…. God bless you.
I’m doing great now Lorie. Thank you for your concern.
Hi Bob I am your invisible follower hahaha. have a pleasant day . I had experienced low blood pressure while working at construction site here in Qatar. Im very scared. I even not able to move my head due to severe neck pain. Luckily my turkis coworker assisted me in the hospital. The Doctor advised me to drink a lot of water. Im from davao city also.
Hi Ulysses. Maayong gabii gikan said Dabaw. You are very right that low blood pressure is a very scary thing! I hope it won’t happen again.
Ernesto Pantua Jr.
Take care Bob and relax take time to smell the flowers
Woooooooo…..? Glad that you are ok! Yea,,,,, lucky you were not robbedð
I’m feeling great now Patrick, so everything is okay!
Wow. Glad you’re OK. Seems that you’ve hit on something that works for you. Good that you’re listening to your body rather than sticking to a rigorous routine just for the sake of it.
Hi Pete, nice to hear from you, you have been a busy guy since arriving in the Philippines! Yeah, this low carb way of eating combined with fasting is working very well for me. This fainting thing is not really related, that was caused by some medication that I was taking and the dosage has now been altered. I feel great.
There’s always a balance. That changes as we do, whether it’s diet, meds, or other things.
Hope youre ok
I am doing great now, William, thanks!
Hi sir bob just read this
Tnx GOD all is well…
Hi Annalou. I am fine now. Just neededo lower BP medication.
I’m doing fine now, it was just need to adjust my blood pressure medication that cause the problem. Thanks for your concern.
Aileen Apolo-de Jesus
Take care Bob.
Thank you, Aileen. I am feeling great now.
Don’t be in such a hurry to lose your weight so quickly stabilize for a couple weeks, let your body adjust and realign it’s set points. Before you start another fast.
Hi Wally – not sure why you feel that I am in “such a hurry” actually, I am just plugging away. I don’t expect to lose weight instantly, I am just trying to improve my health. I took off 4 days of fasting after this incident last week, and have been fasting for 3 now already. No hurry, just business as usual.
Bob? I Asked you what “Moderate Fasting Method” you had such Wonderful blood pressure and other results from,.. Because I know, that it is difficult to avoid ” If a little is good more is better” Urge, Yes? 11 Days of Fasting is not to my knowing, considered “Moderate Fasting” My Friend, Especially Soon After Surgery, Which was mostly my concern, for you. Full Dedication to a Goal Is Commendable. Your Doctor is well Assisting you, in your fasting efforts,.. I am so happy to read this! However,.. 11 Days of Fasting, at even a Young Adult Age, and With Impressive Health & Fitness Level, Seems Extreme and High Risk to my Understanding. I have known a Few Young Athletes that were Fitness Trainers, That Suffered Serious Effects, of Fasting for Spiritual Purpose/Goals In Lest than 7 Days of Fasting. Never Sick, No History of Surgeries etc. I hope you Achieve More Health Improvements than what harm to general health 11 days of fasting has potential of. http://dailyburn.com/life/health/intermittent-fasting-methods/
Patrick – What I was doing was not Intermittent Fasting, it was extended fasting. Fully approved and supervised by my doctor. I have never said anything about moderate fasting. If you don’t think that 11 days of fasting is good, I will pass that along to my doctor and let him know, maybe that will make him reconsider, I can’t say.
Bob Martin I will never pretend to better able/qualified to advise anyone, than any Health Professional. I was simply Suggesting that Intermittent and other methods of fasting, Also produce the results you seem to be hoping to achieve. 11 days is considered Risky and more damaging than beneficial, as I recall from my “Gym Rat and Karate Fitness Days” As well as knowing A few Highly Spiritual Motivated Fasters, that were young and in Competitive level of Fitness and Health,… 6 days of One Multi vitamin/Mineral Tablet and as much water as desired plan,.. Resulted in Death to a 23 Year old Karate/Fitness Instructor I had after only 6 days! ??? Year before he qualified for U.S Olympic Karate Team. ?? He was also a Paramedic With NYC Ambulance Corp. So? I think it is Difficult call as to what is one’s Limits. Perhaps a comparison of advice of current Doc, and another MD That Specializes in Weight loss. ??? I would be sad to hear you hurt yourself in efforts to be more healthy! I wish you all the best in health Happiness and Longevity, Mr. Martin 🙂
So will you get your BP meds reduced soon? The fainting sounded like a side effect to me.
Did that a week ago, Gerald. It is already adjusted. 🙂