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Fasting! The “F” Word for Dieters

 

Eating foods that are not fun is one thing but subjecting yourself to fasting is another. We have been told that fasting will put your body into survival mode, thus slowing down your metabolism in order to conserve energy. Once your metabolism is slowed below its normal rate, it’s hard for the body to bring the metabolic rate back up. But is this necessarily true? Not Really. In fact, the opposite may be true.

Fasting can help you be healthier, bolster your immunity, detoxify your body, resist disease, lose weight, save money, feel better and live longer. So let’s look at the some of the bonuses of sensible fasting.

Weight Loss – This is the most obvious benefit in people’s mind although it shouldn’t be. Although fasting is a temporary loss of weight (mostly water weight), actual fat will be lost. Fat is energy storage after all and when there is no calorie intake, your body will use its reserves to maintain thus fat is burned. Another thing happens. Your sense of taste can change for the better. The tastes buds can become keener as your body yearns for clean, whole foods and not processed junk loaded with chemicals. In other words, fasting is not only a great way to lose initial weight, but it can help you want to eat the right foods making dieting easier.

Detoxify your body – It’s called Ketosis. That sounds scary but Ketosis is when your body runs out of carbohydrates to burn for energy and begins burning fat instead. As mentioned above, fat is basically stored energy but fat is also where toxins and chemicals are stored. This is why burning fat is not only a weight loss thing but a detoxifying benefit as well. On a side note, organic meats have little to no toxins in their fat, which is why they’re better for you.

Bolster your Immunity – Simply put, when your body is not busy working on digesting food, it can focus on other things like its vital immune function. It does this by a process called autophagy – the synthesis and recycling of cellular components by degradation of dead, diseased or worn-out cells, thus making your body a more efficient and a toxin fighting machine.

Improves Metabolism – Yes, intermittent fasting may improve your metabolism. Giving your digestive system a rest will allow it to gain its strength for stronger more efficient digesting in the future. A faster digestion and bowel function means a faster metabolism. You may even consider taking a probiotic supplement during your fast for some icing on top.

Living Longer – I saved the best for last. Many studies show that fasting and/or restrictive calorie intake results in a longer, healthier life for all walks of life. One study shows that intermittent fasting actually allowed rats to live 20% longer than rats that lived on restrictive calorie diets. There’s also evidence that people who intermittently fast on a regular basis live longer and healthier lives than those who eat three regular meals a day. If you think about it, it’s the summation of the above features is what can cause a longer and healthier life.

CAUTIONS: There are some cautions to be aware of.

  • Dehydration is common. Fasting does NOT mean going without water. Keeping hydrated with water intake is always a good thing.
  • Headaches may occur due to dehydration or increased stress levels from the halt of ongoing food intake, especially if your diet is abundant and poor.
  • It is recommended by healthcare professionals that you should not fast if you are pregnant, under the age of 18, type 1 diabetic, suffer from malnutrition, recovering from surgery, have a history of cardiac arrhythmias, hepatic insufficiency or renal insufficiency.

 

There are many good books on all this. Some are only health oriented, and some are also faith based. Paul Bragg is the most famous author with Miracle of Fasting. Joel Fuhrman is well known for Fasting. Scot McKnight also wrote a book Fasting. Herbert Shelton wrote Fasting Can Save Your Life.

 

ONE LAST THING: I wrote this piece without actually ever fasting. The research convinced me to do so. In my own experience, I lost 3.5 pounds. After my day of fasting, I had only the urge to eat healthy foods in the coming days, which is saying something considering my diet or lack thereof. I kept well hydrated but still managed to get a slight headache. Hunger was bothersome until after lunchtime and then again when my wife fixed a wonderful smelling meal for my kids. I never lost energy and my energy level was higher the next day. I will fast again next week to see if my experience is for the better or worse and will then add to this blog.

 

Live Long and Love Life

Your Friends at Supplement Spot

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