Lately, many studies have been released reporting how fasting can be amazing for our health. Among other reasons, it seems that starvation allows the body to eat itself, performs a cleansing process, and eliminates sick cells, cancer cells and aged cells, protecting the body from diseases such as diabetes.
Yet many people don't ever experience it because they find it hard. How can we go hours or even days without eating? I've asked myself the same question, but there are many solutions that can work out for different people with different goals. Find below some fasting methods that have gained popularity lately.
This option does not allow you to take any food or drink during the fast to make the body gain its energy from the toxins present in the body. As the body does not receive any external nutrients, the cells will start eating the toxins in order to survive.
However, this method of fasting has been criticised by those who say that when the body fasts it needs more fluids, not less, and that there can be no positive effect from not drinking water. In fact, some people claim that dry fasting can put you at risk of kidney stones or organ failure.
On the other hand, water fasting is a water-only diet, in which you can only consume water for (depending on your preference) 24h to 72 hours. Those planning an even longer fasting time should only do so if followed by a doctor. Water fasting can be used for detox, weight loss or its health benefits, or sometimes when preparing for some specific medical procedure or screening.
This is a type of fasting that doesn't make you starve, as it allows you to drink very nutritious juices. Also known as juice cleansing, it is a diet where people consume only fruit and vegetable juices while abstaining from solid foods. It can last from one to seven days and is typically used as an alternative medicine treatment, often part of detox diets.
It has been one of the most popular health trends in recent years to help improve immunity. This type of fasting consists of not eating solid food for a set number of hours in a row, on a scheduled basis.
People can take 16, 12 or eight hours just drinking water, tea or coffee (without sugar), but there are intermittent fasts for fearless people that can take much longer, such as 24h or even 36h. As such, there are a few types of intermittent fasting that you should be aware of.
This is a type of intermittent fasting. If you choose this one, each time you fast, you will only have one meal a day. Some people choose to have dinner and then not eat again until dinner the next day (dinner for dinner or lunch for lunch).
The disadvantage of this method is that it is difficult to get all the nutrients your body needs with just one meal a day, as well as it is hard not to give up in the first few hours, as you can get really hungry and moody. Also, if not done properly, it can lead you to consume not-so-great foods after the fast.
This is a fantastic approach for beginners because it is quite flexible as people can decide which meals to skip according to their hunger level, which can be great for people who easily monitor and respond to their body's signals.
In short, people on this type of fasting eat when they are hungry and skip meals when they are not as a kind of intuitive eating style.
This type of fasting may be best for people who have tried other types of intermittent fasting before, because it is a bit extreme. Warrior fasting consists of eating very little, just some raw fruits and vegetables, over a 20-hour period, and then having a big meal in the evening. However, this model has been criticised by many doctors who claim it is unnecessary and even negative for the body.
Not everyone should fast
Keep in mind that not everyone should fast. For example, women who are pregnant or trying to get pregnant as well as people with any kind of illness, such as anaemia and diabetes because their blood sugar level may drop too low. Also, people who have had eating disorders such as anorexia should not do any kind of fasting.