Preparation for Your Fast
Inform yourself about fasting: by doing your own investigation, reading all you can about the fasting process, the various kinds of fasts and what you can expect as side affects.
If you have a pre-existing health condition
then you should find out
if there are contrary indications with fasting and your condition.
Determine your cleanse duration and time period:
- Try to arrange that your fast is in a time period where you have low activity .
- Avoid heavy kinds of work if at all possible.
- When it comes to long fasts and your inability to handle a long fast, just do the best you can.
- When detoxification increases as it does during fasting, the liver, kidneys, lungs and immune system work extra hard to handle the load. If these systems were already compromised before the fast, one must proceed carefully. You go as long as you can tolerate it, whether physiologically or emotionally, and then come back to eating again. Once you have some energy and are a few steps further toward health, you can consider doing another fast.
- Several short fasts can definitely do wonders if one long fast cannot be undertaken.
Long fasts are preferable to short ones because once the body is in the fasting state ,
it cleanses systematically ,
the harder to get at ,
For this reason, most of the recoveries from illness have taken place in the latter parts of long juice or water fasts.
Long fasts give the body the uninterrupted time to do the work of healing.
The first few days of fasting gets rid of the gross waste products of digestion,
but only after this can the body pull out its tools to get to work on healing.
One Day Fast
One way to start is to fast one day, working towards fasting regularly,
one day per week or for longer periods of time.
You can fast from all food, or only from solid food.
You can choose a one day fast with only:
- fresh fruit juice
- fresh vegetable juice
- raw fruit
- raw vegetables
Avoiding during the fast:
- cooked vegetables,
- cooked whole grains,
- whole grain flour products,
- pasta, etc.
- vegetable protein,
- soy products
- ice cream,
- fast food,
- junk food,
- prepared foods,
- artificial flavoring,
- sweeteners, etc.
Not to consume any drugs, nicotine and alcohol during fast should be clear.
You can fast from 1 to 40 days. Try to drink 2 liters of water or more per day.
The ten day water fast has become the most recommended number of days.
Ten days on water will cause the same weight loss as 30 days on juice.
But water fasting is far more difficult, especially if you have a fast metabolism.
Water fasting cleanses the body aggressively removing toxins rapidly.
Water fasting demands mental preparation,
the less pressure and responsibility you have during a water fast the better.
See it as a holiday away form the normal patterns of living.
It is HIGHLY recommended
that the week before your fast,
you drink fresh juices and eat mostly raw fruits and vegetables ,
to cleanse the body ,
so that the detoxification during water fasting ,
will be less aggressive.
Water fasting should
include two or three days
of juice fasting
before and after
the water fast.
This alternating between juice and water fasting
is the most effective method of achieving a full cleansing
To ease into water fasting some recommend juice fasting with periods of water fasting.
- 3 days on juice,
- 2 days on water,
- 5 days on juice,
- 3 days on water
You can juice when you have to work and water fast on the weekend when you can rest.
Avoid water straight from the faucet. Distilled water is the best for cleansing because of its inherent, magnetic properties and ability to absorb and suspend large quantities of toxins, flushing them from the body.
The perceived value of mineral water is misleading because the inorganic minerals are like huge boulders to the cellular membranes, making them impossible to assimilate.
The best water is distilled, secondly is spring or filtered water.
There are no calories or nutritional value in water.
On a water fast you have given your body no options but to turn to itself for fuel.
This can create a problem when you have spent years depositing counterfeit fuel. Living exclusively on dirty fuel during a fast takes tremendous courage & strength.
It is not advisable to water fast if you have existing conditions
It is best if you consult with a fasting expert , your doctor
and exercise careful monitoring throughout your fast.
Be careful of dizziness and black outs. The heart is resting as much as it can during water fasting.
Before you stand up, take one or two deep breaths to get the heart pumping.
If you start to black out, sit down or crouch down on one knee.
This will immediately stop the dizziness.
Frequency of Fasting
Of course, the best is that people stay on a good daily health regime and then when the need comes to fast to go ahead and do it for a week to 10 days or longer if indicated. At least long enough to move completely into the fasting physiology and accelerated detoxification. Ideally people should fast once or twice a year just as a tune-up to deal with the environmental toxins and junk in our foods as well as the emotional build up. Traditionally people have fasted in the spring and fall, when the weather is mild.
Fasting one day a week is greatly beneficial , and will keep you in tune to perform a longer fast perhaps
once a month of maybe 3 to 5 days or longer.
It is good to at least have mild exercise and movements with short walks to keep the lymphatic fluid moving and to the keep the vascular system working.
The amount of exercise you can do is very much dependent on your existing condition and how you are feeling that day and what kind of fast you are doing.
Basically one needs to be alert and listen to one’s body and not to overdo ! !
Fasting is resting, not a marathon!
You may feel weak during a water fast and may need to rest more often.
While juice fasting, you may experience an abundance of energy that makes exercise easy.
If you experience energy loss,
- limit yourself to stretching exercises,
- light walking
- deep breathing.
But you should exercise at YOUR OWN PACE …
AVOID PROTEIN SUPPLEMENTS
Fasting with protein became known as the Opti-fast.
Fasters took nothing but water and a protein drink.
Sadly, several people died.
Protein digestion during the fasting state created an overload of urea and the blood become acidic. In this condition, the organs become more damaged instead of healing.
To the body, fasting is a natural process. During water or juice fasting, the protein levels of the blood remain constant. Although protein is being utilized, a person fasting 40 days on water will not suffer a deficiency of either protein, vitamins, minerals or fatty acids. In the breakdown of dying and diseased cells, all essential substances are available while fasting for re-use within the body. These dead cells are utilized in a systematic manner.Protein deficiency is non existent in North America. You never hear of anyone being diagnosed with protein deficiency. Fruit and vegetable juices have water-soluble highly absorbable proteins.
The body has a store of protein, and it uses it selectively. Dying cells are the first to be used and healthy and vital tissues are the very last and will only be used as a last resort.
Only during starvation is protein being stripped from healthy tissue to be used to survive.
This may take 30 to 80 days of fasting on water to reach this point.
Aiding Elimination of Toxins
- If you are not having natural bowel movements then an enema is advised to move out the toxic material that is being scoured by your body. You will feel much better after taking an enema. An enema can be taken daily in the beginning days of a fast, then bi-daily for the remainder using just plain water.
- It is common, during fasting, for the nose and throat to pass sticky mucus, clogging the sinuses. White strands of mucus may be found in the stool. You may find that you are more comfortable if you use a Neti Pot to clear the sinus cavities, to prevent getting a cold with the clogged sinuses. You can also drink lemon juice with water to help clear the mucus.
- Plan to shower or bath daily to aid in cleaning the pores and assist the removal of toxins. The skin is a large organ and many toxins are removed through the pores causing a gummy deposit on the surface of the skin.
- It may help to brush the skin removing the sludge that is deposited there.
Reactions from Fasting
The ‘healing’ reactions you get from fasting are dependent on your existing health and the toxic load present in your body when you start.
The first three days can be the most difficult until one’s appetite for food goes away, which it normally does after the third day. Many people experience headaches, joint pain and other discomforts in the first few days.
Your tongue will become coated and your breath foul, and you may notice increased body odor. These are all normal detox reactions as the toxins move out of your body. With extended fasting you will notice some days are symptom free, then as you move into deeper layers of detoxification you will experience episodes of symptoms as your body cleanses these other systems.
In the later stages you remove the mucous from your system and this can increase your likelihood to catch a flu or a cold. At times you may feel weak or tired, so you should listen to your body and rest. Periods of high-energy and mental clarity will be experienced and can be variable, alternating between periods of healing reactions and symptom free days.
With extended fasts it is normal to also have strong emotional reactions that have been suppressed, as the body brings these to the surface also for healing…
This can be a difficult period, but can be dealt with more easily with meditation , PRAYER , and trusted fellowship when possible.
. The cleansing response that happens is dependent on experience with fasting, current health and level of toxins and sickness in your body. If you have an existing health condition, it is possible that you get a strong healing reaction or healing crisis.
If cleansing responses arise (headache, stomach upset, mental fog, lethargy,.etc) exercise great patience and take rest until symptoms pass. It’s all part of the process.
Always go to your capacity but never over-do.
If unreasonably strong physical or emotional symptoms occur, it may be wise to discontinue.
The following are common reactions and what can be done to ease the symptom while you are fasting.
As your system detoxifies, many of these spiritual aspects of ourselves that have been waiting to come through for a long time are finally able to, and that person, hopefully fasting in an environment that is calm and serene and peaceful and loving, will be able to express and deal with these spiritual phenomena in such a way that it can have a very beneficial and positive effect.
Weight loss can initially be as high as three to four pounds per day, but as the fast continues, the average loss will be one pound per day. If you are juice fasting and not losing weight, the juice is supplying all the calories you need. You may have to cut down on the juices or alternate between water fasting and juice fasting if losing weight is part of your goal. The slower your metabolism the slower the weight loss. If you are thin or average weight and you fast for 30 days on juice or 10 days on water, you will become thin. Ribs will show, the face will become gaunt, and friends and family will display concern. But the body will quickly normalize its weight in 5 to 10 days after the fast. If you are thin to start with, fasting may allow you to gain additional weight after the fast. Metabolism is normalized due to the cleansing process. It is very important not to try to gain weight too quickly. The body can rebuild only at a set rate. Overeating will burden the body and undermine the rebuilding process.
Back pain may increase due to toxins in the lower intestine. The blood vessels that draw nutrients from the colon are very close to the nerves of the spine. Back pain often decreases after elimination of the toxins. Back exercises also can relieve some pain. A cold pack also will help. An enema may be in order…
These may develop from a toxic buildup in the mouth. Unhealthy bacteria increases between the teeth. The tongue becomes coated with waste. To stop cankers, gargle with sea salt mixed with water several times daily. Dabbing the sore with tea tree oil or vitamin E quickens the healing process.
Mucoid is the perfect food for viruses. Toxins weaken the immune system. When large quantities of toxins and mucus are in the blood due to a fast, they can cause a susceptibility to colds. To fight a cold, continue fasting to eliminate the mucus. Reduce the liquid intake and drink lemon juice.
During fasting the body conserves energy. The heart pumps slower and blood pressure lowers. Standing or moving quickly from a resting position will cause the blood to flow to the legs. For a few seconds, the brain may not get enough oxygen, causing blackouts and dizziness. To stop a blackout get down on one knee or sit. Lowering your center of gravity will instantly stop a blackout. Blackouts are more frequent during water fasting.
Toxins can cause muscle tightness in the neck and shoulders. This can result in tension headaches. Massaging the neck and shoulders will help relieve the tension. The herb Fever Few, which is available in health food stores, is well worth trying.
The muscles may become tight and sore due to toxin irritation. The legs can be the worst affected as toxins accumulate in the legs. A self massage, hot baths, stretching and exercising will help to release the toxins.
When waste is released too quickly by the lymph glands, some of the toxic overload is taken by the liver and secreted with bile into the stomach. This causes nausea. Drinking water or carrot juice will dilute the bile and toxin mixture helping to flush it from the system.
The elimination of toxins can irritate damaged nerves. Exercise will relieve tension. Use quarter slices of avocado to slow the fast or drink fruit juice if on a water fast. However, you should note that any food intake may cause one’s hunger to return and make it more difficult to stay on the fast, just do the best that you can.
The skin may become oily as rancid oils are purged from the body. People with problem free skin may have a few days of pimples or boils. A pallid complexion is also a sign of waste in the blood. When cleansed of mucus and toxins, the skin will be healthy, soft and unblemished.
Include bananas and avocados when juice fasting to balance the blood sugar level. Toxins in the blood and reduced blood sugar levels may cause a weak heart to labor. Like any other organ, the heart needs nutrients, a toxin free environment, and time to heal. Also if one has the disorder of POTS it is advisable to take salt so that the blood pressure does not get too low.
The liver can become toxic due to abuse. If the liver is badly degenerated, cleansing must be done in stages. Start with short juice fasts and lead to fasts over five days. Avoid heavy proteins, refined flours and fatty foods. Eat meals of fruits or vegetables between the fasts.
Nobody is too old to fast – it is exactly what the body needs to feel young again. Shorter fasts are recommended to start. Assess your physical state as you proceed. If juice fasting becomes too intense, bananas and avocados will lessen the intensity by slowing the cleansing.
During your fast you may enter into a healing crisis, which indicates that a deeply seated sickness is being healed, but also this means that you are going in reverse through the reactions that you went through as your sickness progressed. This is normally a good thing, because it shows that there is a major healing happening, but the downside is that it is not easy to go through because of the uncomfortable reactions that cause pain, etc. If you are feeling quite ill then you should read through the healing reaction article to try to determine if this is what is going on with you or not. It may be advisable to check with your medical professional at this point, to try to determine if you want to continue the fast or not.
The Lemon Cleanse
The Lemon Cleanse is between a water fast and a juice fast. Basically it consists of drinking a mixture of freshly squeezed lemons, water and maple syrup for a period of 8 to 40 days. It is easier to do than a water fast because you are still getting nutrients and energy from the lemons and the maple syrup. This fast can be done while still maintaining your normal work, yet is less calories than what you would get from a juice fast. It is normal to lose weight on this fast and it is excellent for cleansing the colon.
Going Off Your Fast
“It’s a fact that eating causes a cycle of hunger. It’s only when we stop eating that we lose hunger! Think about it. All fasting experts agree that hunger sensations are usually lost on or shortly after the third day of fasting, and sometimes don’t return for weeks, but when they do return, usually very strongly, it’s the time to break the fast.”
But all fasting experts point out that it is important to resume eating very lightly, and very gradually, in exact relationship to the duration of the fast. Therefore, if breaking a 40-day fast, you may want to start with only small quantities of fruit juice for several days up to a week, before actually resuming with solid food like regular fruit.
Keep the first solid meal light and simple even though the mental temptation to dive into heavier favorites will probably be high. Be gentle with your digestive system and your digestive system will not only thank you but the overall benefits of the cleanse will last much longer. If you were on a water fast, then your first day can be juices, if your were on a juice fast, then your first day should be raw vegetables or fruits. The next meal may include heavier items such as potato, avocado or corn, but in any case you will notice that your body is very sensitive to what you eat and you should use this period of transition to learn more about what your body likes and doesn’t like you to put into it.
When waking up a slumbering digestive system, the desire to eat will be intense. The flavors and textures of food will be enhanced by super clean nasal passages. Eating will be a brand new experience. This is the time to flex your new-found muscles of discipline and self-control. As the body screams, I want more, wisdom whispers, you have had enough.
Eating small amounts of raw fruits and vegetables for the first five or six days will allow the body to gently wake up the digestive system. The body will continue to detoxify and cleanse during this period. Any toxins that have accumulated will begin to move due to the sweeping action of the soft fibers of fruits and vegetables.
For six days gradually increase the amount of raw fruits and vegetables in your diet. To break a fast and gorge on meat, bread or junk food will be disaster. Jarring the system this intensely when the digestive system is in a sensitive state can cause stomach cramps, nausea and weakness, negating much of the benefits of the fast.
Eat slowly and chew your food well. Saliva has enzymes that assist in digestion. Up to 80 percent of the starch, 30 percent of the protein and 10 percent of the fat can be digested by the enzymes in saliva.
Do not overeat! Discover the amount of food that your body needs to live a vibrant, healthy life. Discern the difference between cravings and hunger. Never feed your emotions.
When breaking a fast over ten days, the break-in period should be extended one day for every 4 days of fasting.
Greater Sensitivity – Restored Senses
An interesting phenomenon occurs after a fast. The years of conditioning your body to tolerate unhealthy foods is reversed. The body is as clean as a newborn baby. Try feeding a newborn baby Grandma’s apple pie.
When the body is full of toxins, its defense systems are not able to operate effectively. After a fast the natural defenses are restored and sensitivity to unhealthy food is increased. You will feel satisfied with smaller amounts of food and sluggish and tired when overeating. Rich foods, full of fat, salt, and processed sugars will cause nausea, headaches and weakness. A handful of fruit will be thoroughly satisfying. Because the digestive system has to work less, there will be boundless energy to spare.
Why? After a fast your body is clean, and has far less tolerance to the poisonous foods that you were used to eating previous to the fast. Understand, feeling sick when eating poison is a sign that your body is functioning normally. Fasting restores the body’s ability to violently react to harmful, health damaging, food. If you really desire, you can desensitize your body by slowly introducing harmful foods back into your diet, but why you should? You better select your food carefully, even though it is not possible to avoid toxins as these are every where. So fasting as a regular cleaning is important and will keep you healthy.