Fasting for Better Health

Photo credit: Derek Jensen [Public domain]

What is Fasting?

A simple definition of fasting: “The act of willingly abstaining from all food, and in some cases drink, for a pre-determined period of time.” The key word here is willingly. The other key word/phrase is pre-determined period of time. You will be deciding to not eat for a period of time.

The Benefits of Fasting

-Fasting has many benefits, a few of which include:

-You learn to master better lifelong eating habits.

-Doesn’t cost a penny. Fasting is free. You don’t need to buy supplements or services.

-Develops mindful eating. You become more aware of what, when, and why you are eating.

-Reduces your insulin resistance.

You gain control over mindless snacking. Once you experience that a 24-hour pause in your eating is tolerable, it becomes easier to avoid snacking needlessly when you’re not hungry.

How Long to Fast?

The 24-hour fast is the one most people use to the greatest benefit. There are longer fasts, such as three days and five days, but they should be monitored and guided by a health professional. The 24-hour fast can be done by anyone, though it needs to be noted that it should not be done more than once a week.

With a 24-hour fast, you never go a whole day without eating. The fasting begins as soon as you finish a meal. You decide when you will begin fasting, and when you put your fork down, look at the clock. You will be eating again in 24 hours. You can decide to begin right after breakfast or dinner. It is up to you.

No food is allowed during the fasting period. This means no low-calorie or no-calorie food, too. If you decide that you simply must eat something, end the fast and start again on another day.

Liquids are allowed and encouraged during a fast. There are recommended liquids that allow your body to stay in the fasted state and those are:

  • Water: filtered or sparkling, but no flavoring.
  • Water with lemon or lime
  • Black coffee
  • Tea with no sugar or sweetener and no milk
  • Tea with lemon

You do not need any special drinks, supplements, cleanses or detoxifiers. Keep it simple.

After 24 hours have passed, you can break the fast and eat a meal.

Set Yourself Up for Success

  1. Plan ahead to remove temptation so that you are in control of your schedule and what you drink during your fast.
  2. Set your intentions. Some people think of fasting as deprivation, but those who gain the most from fasting think of it as a cleansing.
  3. Prepare to feel hungry and have a strategy to handle it. You can embrace hunger as a sign that your body is releasing stored fat and using it for energy. You can imagine the fatty parts of your body being depleted.

 

 

About Robin R.
I’m an AFPA certified personal trainer & nutrition consultant, NASM certified corrective exercise specialist, NASM certified youth exercise specialist, online fitness trainer and freelance writer specializing in health and fitness. I hold a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of San Francisco and a Master of Science in natural health. I specialize in weight loss, functional strength training, total body toning, aerobic conditioning, plyometric training, nutrition planning, and home-based boot camp style workouts for women. My goal is to make every personal training session fun and effective for my clients. My services include online fitness training and professional content writing services at an affordable price for your business website or blog. I specialize in search engine optimization (SEO), article & blog writing.

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