Dave Asprey- “Fast This Way” Book Review

Dave Asprey: Intermittent Fasting Tips to Suppress Appetite - OptimOZ.com.au

Dave Asprey has been publishing books for a while now since his 2011 publishing of the Better Baby Book. He treats us to another book this time about the science of fasting and why we should incorporate it into our daily lives.

Dave’s books (and I’ll be providing another comprehensive blog post about all of them) have been “Game Changers” focused on health. In fact, both the Bulletproof Diet and “Headstrong” contained recommendations about fasting, so for this book to once again be about fasting is nothing revolutionary and new here. There have also been previous books written about the benefits of fasting from a more scientific perspective, most notably Dr. Berg’s Intermittent fasting and the health benefits of doing such. 

There’s nothing wrong with writing a book about a subject someone else has covered, but if you’re going to do so, at least provide more unique scientific insight than the previous person did. Dave doesn’t do this. Instead he chooses to go down the route of storytelling , a bit of showing of his brand and product placement, and not much else. What made Bulletproof DietThe Better Baby BookHeadstrong, and Superhuman decent reads was that they offered some preparatory information that hadn’t been seen before in the mainstream. The Bulletproof Diet had a useful roadmap that separate good fats and bad ones, The Better Baby Book offered clear advice on things that can influence birth like diet and EMF radiation, Headstrong looked deeper in the effect light has on our mitochondrial health, and Superhuman looked at supplements like C360, which was a real game changer for my health personally… 

Here in Fast This Way, there’s nothing new that really wows you or makes you come out of the reading thinking you’ve really added to your knowledge base. If you already have experience with fasting and know the scientific benefits of it, you’ll be left somewhat disappointed by this book in comparison to the others.

His personal stories about fasting are in nearly every chapter of the book, which help reinforce the importance of the “psychological battle” that is fasting. This can be seen as entertaining, storytelling marketing, but I think those expecting more scientific proof on the benefits of fasting will be left pretty disappointed, and that’s the main problem with Dave. 

He’s a marketing entrepreneur guy. He isn’t a doctor or someone who writes books with a lot of science to back up his points. Instead, he chooses to simplify everything, and I think that’s why his books sell so well in the New York times. Simple sells and is most relatable, which makes this book enjoyable for people with little scientific background who just need a bit of guidance and a Tony Robbins-esque self help and guidance.

But for people who are from a science background, it would be nice to include more scientific studies, and there just aren’t enough scientific studies in place to back the points he makes. Just phrases like “you don’t need to eat” and references to religion, I don’t think are enough solid proof points to long-term benefits of fasting. He could’ve gone more into the benefits like Stem Cell Regeneration.

The mentioning of guidance to women offers some really invaluable information for which I was unaware of beforehand. For me, this was one of the most unique aspects of the book and was interesting. He built on this in the final few chapters, showing advice for those for young people below age 25 and for those with eating disorders. This aids the book in helping a variety of people, not just the biohacker lovers.

Then there’s the product placement that’s annoying, but it’s come to be expected by now as he does it every single book with the exception of The Better Baby Book. He does this way more than other mainstream authors do, and it may alienate some readers. Of course, he’s a businessman first and scientist second, and he needs to make sales. But not everyone can fast with bulletproof coffee, and a lot of people can’t afford the $15,000 40 Years of Zen. His mention of TrueDark glasses is worthy as I feel excessive blue light causes terrible sleep, which can lead to more hunger cravings, but again the constant product placement gets tiresome. To his credit, though, there were opportunities to bring more Dave Asprey products into the equation, which he didn’t do. For example, where he talk

about vitamin A, D, and K, he could’ve endorsed his own ADK Products, but he chose not to which at least shows he has some limit to his product placement.

Aside from the pointers on sleep and psychology, Dave never really goes deep on the reasons why fasting can be difficult for people. There’s too much emphasis on psychology, willpower etc. and not enough on other important topics like candida and parasites. Parasites are an epidemic in our society, and there has been very little mention of them in his books in the past.

Although in a recent interview with the “Radical Roots” CEO, he mentioned the book “Your Brain on Parasites”. Dave hasn’t spoken that much on the issue. It’s common that parasite infestations and candida can cause sugar cravings. For me personally what made my fast a lot easier was a disciplined parasite cleanse with Mimosa Pudica. After I removed several large rope worms from my body, my sugar cravings subsided. 

I believe a lot of people struggle with fasting purely because they are too infested with candida and parasites causing them to crave food which is zapping their willpower up and causing them to eat garbage foods. It’s well known that these parasites/candida cause food cravings for sugar, dairy etc., so it would’ve been nice for Dave to add guidance for candida and parasite cleanses for those who are struggling with fasting. This, in my opinion, would’ve been a lot more useful than his frequent psychology pep talks, which I found added little to those who already fast.

The supplement section of the book is pretty much all products which he’s mentioned before—Magnesium, D3, K2, and Iodine all made appearances in the early Bulletproof Diet books. There is no mention of C60, which is ironic as I found this to be the best supplement for minimising food cravings and which helped me during my own fasting journey. 

Dave even mentions Serrapeptase, which is in the blend of C60 for the company he has stake in (C360 Health), which makes it even more ironic as to why he didn’t mention the company. I’d much rather he adds in affordable products that actually help with fasting like C60 rather than products that are too outside people’s budget like 40 Years of Zen. 

He mentions digestive enzymes from Biooptimizers, one of the few products he’s mentioned here that haven’t been in previous books, but everything else has already been mentioned beforehand, and personally, I’ve found that not many of them, barring MCT oil, had an impact on my fasting. This is information that those like Sayer Ji and Ben Greenfield had covered in their releases last year. There’s nothing new here in this section that makes

Pros

  • Simple and easy to understand like the majority of Dave Asprey’s books
  • Offers a good insight to the psychological challenge of fasting
  • Good insights into sleep which would be useful for those with no prior knowledge of Dave Asprey’s work
  • Offers valuable information to women on their fasting journey

Cons

  • Lacks scientific studies to really back up the points he makes
  • Not enough on illness that can be causing sugar cravings like candida and parasites
  • Too much on religion and spirituality which may put off readers looking for more scientific insight
  • A bit too much product placement (although this is already a known issue in all of Dave’s books and podcasts—the guy needs to make sales, and he’s a businessman first, so it’s somewhat understandable)
  • Nothing mentioned here that hasn’t already been mentioned in other health books of the past 3-4 years
  • The constant self help pep talks sprinkled in will leave those looking for scientific answers frustrated
  • Could’ve made more of an effort to link in environmental toxins and weight gain 

Conclusion

Dave Asprey cannot seem to put a foot wrong, and I personally have enjoyed his books and podcasts. Each one of them has impacted me in positive ways and helped to progress my health to the next level. Unfortunately Fast This Way has to be my least favourite book of his. It lacked the suss of new ideas that made his previous books special. For those new to fasting and Dave’s ideas, there’s still a lot of useful information here for beginners. For those struggling with fasting, I find it incomplete. He could’ve gone into candida and parasites and what causes sugar cravings more which would’ve offered more support to those struggling with fasting diets.

Dave Asprey cannot seem to put a foot wrong, and I personally have enjoyed his books and podcasts. Each one of them has impacted me in positive ways and helped to progress my health to the next level. Unfortunately Fast This Way has to be my least favourite book of his. It lacked the suss of new ideas that made his previous books special. For those new to fasting and Dave’s ideas, there’s still a lot of useful information here for beginners. For those struggling with fasting, I find it incomplete. He could’ve gone into candida and parasites and what causes sugar cravings more which would’ve offered more support to those struggling with fasting diets.

As I’ve said before, Dave’s a businessman first, scientist second. You’re not going to get a comprehensive list of scientific articles backing up each and every last one of his points. Instead, you’re going to get more of a “self-help Tony Robbins, let’s high five” style book. that’s a good thing for the people of a non-scientific background and for those starting out on their journey to change their diet or start a weight-loss protocol. But it’s a bad thing for those who’ve read similar books to this before like Dr. Berg’s intermittent fasting who might grow tired of the motivational talk and product placement and instead would want some more science on the long-term benefits of fasting and how it can help detox from parasites and mould of which there’s more science starting to emerge that prove useful to those struggling on their wellness journey, but Dave provides little of this.

And this begs a bigger question: Are Dave’s standards slipping? He stepped down as the CEO of Bulletproof, and some of the newer products he’s released this year including the rebranded coffee, omega 6 oil containing bars, and canned coffee to go have received criticism from those on the Bulletproof facebook group with many believing the brand is going in the wrong direction. He also posted some bizarre views on vaccines during March 2020, in which he hoped to see the whole of the US vaccinated, which most biohackers would probably not agree with seeing as the majority of them promote holistic medicine as well as Big Pharma. Fast This Way, Dave’s first book since the rebranding of the company he founded, is probably proof that this could be the case.

5/10

One thought on “Dave Asprey- “Fast This Way” Book Review

  1. Thanks for your honest review which pretty reflexes mine.

    I didn’t feel like I have discovered anything new and I thought that some areas could be improved or developed in a different way

    Like

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