Fasting, an ancient fad of our ancestors that aids in disease recovery, crushes cravings, heals & rejuvenates the body and mind, is free and available to everyone. Get your free fasting guide here.
Since time immemorial, humans have been fasting. The hunter-gatherers of old may have taken days to get a kill to feed their tribe leaving them to fast unwillingly.Through manufacturing, people have nearly limitless access to food. It is perhaps humanity’s greatest convenience. The mismanagement of this convenience alongside disordered eating opens people up to a whole host of problems:
– Heart/Kidney Disease
– and more
Now people are fasting to restore themselves for improved quality of life and longevity.
While there are misconceptions about the dangers of fasting, it’s something that you and everyone does every single day.
There are two types of fasts that you may benefit from. One is Time-Restricted Eating (TRE) also known as Intermittent Fasting which is short-term, the other is Prolonged Fasting also known as Therapeutic Fasting which is long-term.
Dr. Nathan Gershfeld, Founder of Fasting Escape explains, “When you go from dinner to breakfast you are not eating. Your body is shifting towards the sleep cycle, and so you’re actually fasting. When you break your fast in the morning, whether it’s 7 a.m., 10:00 a.m., or 1:00 p.m., whenever you eat your first meal, that’s called breakfast – ‘break’ ‘fast’. That’s what at the heart of fasting is. It’s just not eating.”
He continues, “There’s another definition of therapeutic fasting [where] you’re fasting to facilitate the reversal or the remission of certain diseases, and give your body a complete physiological rest. That definition is the complete abstinence of all food and drink in an environment of complete rest”.
Whichever you choose, there are great benefits to be had from fasting. (Certain benefits may be had only with long-term fasting which is suggested that you do under medical supervision).
1. Reversal/Remission of acute & chronic conditions
2. Treat high blood pressure, diabetes, autoimmune disorders
3. Get blood sugars down
4. Lowers risk of heart disease, stroke, cancers, infections, kidney disease
5. Improve eyesight
6. Improved concentration
7. Growth hormone increase
8. Stem cell production
9. Improve menstrual/period regulation
10. and more
As women’s bodies go through monthly and seasonal changes, there are other benefits that they may receive. Dr. Renae Thomas, Medical Director at Fasting Escape reveals, “One of the things that I do see is menstrual irregularities sometimes with fasting, so it’s not uncommon to see someone skip a menstrual cycle if it is during that fasted period, but it usually doesn’t have any negative long-term effects. In fact, it tends to have the opposite effect. We tend to see improvements in regularities for people that are struggling. Something like PCOS [and] endometriosis tend to respond very well to fasting and a health promoting diet, but if you do happen to skip a period in the middle of a fast that wouldn’t be something that would be abnormal”.
Fasting has had such a positive impact on Jackie Moravek’s life that she started the YouTube channel “Intermittent Fasting Foodie” sharing her fasting journey and teaching others.
“When I was 24, I was diagnosed with a Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver, and since fasting my blood work no longer shows a fatty liver. When I was diagnosed, I wasn’t overweight, I was young, and I had never been a drinker, so I only really have fasting to thank for it going away. I had a toenail fungus on both of my big toes for over a decade. I couldn’t get rid of it. Within 5 months of fasting it’s gone. It’s never come back, and I’ve had that for over 10 years. My entire adult life”, said Jackie
She continues, “I was in an overweight category, and within the first 5 months I quickly lost between 30-35 pounds. The best part about it to me is that I’m no longer obsessed with food. I don’t have that mental weight of dieting or shame with what I consume anymore, and so I very much appreciate that I don’t have the mental burden of that anymore”.
She concludes, “My eyesight improved. I went to the same eye doctor for 8 years. The doctor said “I see this a lot with diabetic patients. Once they get their insulin under control their eyesight improves”, so he wasn’t surprised that my eyesight improved. I sleep better, and overall I just feel better every day.”
Great benefits may come from fasting, however Prolonged Fasting is not for everyone. Those who have no interest in fasting or think something bad may happen to them may want to avoid fasting. When you dwell on negative thoughts, it’s more likely to happen to the body. The same goes for positive effects. This is why we have what is called “the Placebo effect”. Other reasons to not do long-term fasts are if you are or have:
3. Heart/Kidney disease
4. Cardiac instabilities and you’re on anti-coagulant therapy
5. Taking medications
Dr. Alan Goldhamer, Founder of TrueNorth Health Center says, “It’s really important that people have a proper medical history, a physical exam, and laboratory evaluations before undertaking a long-term fast. Short-term intermittent fasting where people are fasting 12 to 16 hours, that’s okay because it doesn’t require modification of medications, [and] it’s safe for most people”.
Dr. Jason Fung, Founder of The Fasting Method says, “Most of us only think about the diet. You’re missing half the story. You’re missing the question of when and how often you eat, which is why diets can be very unsuccessful because you’ve only sort of answered that first part and not the full picture”, so incorporate intermittent fasting for health & wellness to see prime benefits.
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Disclaimer: The views, suggestions, and opinions expressed here are the sole responsibility of the experts. No Buzz Illustrated journalist was involved in the writing and production of this article.