A couple of months ago I got introduced to a new concept – water fasting. Rules were simple You only need to drink water. Then I started doing my research spending hours online, trying to figure out all pros and cons and other people’s experiences. I was blown away by so many videos of people posting so many great results for their health.
Since one of my goals, this year for myself was to improve my health by losing weight which is a constant struggle in my life. I research online about the potential benefits of water fasting and I found out that it can help with these symptoms or diseases: Hypertension, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Chronic pain, Heart Disease, Psoriasis, Diabetes Asthma Mental health and fat loss. But how could not eating any food for a certain period, fix all these symptoms? I thought that I must try it myself to agree or disagree!
What is water fasting?
Water fasting is the process of allowing your body to heal and repair. You see, once our bodies are not wasting time and energy on digesting and processing the food, it starts rebuilding themselves. If you have any pain in your body in any certain area, during the water fasting you might feel it more intensively than usual. Do not be afraid. Your body is repairing itself and it always can get worse before it gets better. The idea is very simple: just drink plain water and rest. That’s it. Your body is going to take care of the rest. That also means you cannot drink any other liquid that can potentially have any calories: no tea, no coffee, no alcohol, no lemon water, also no heavy physical activities, no stress, and no over-exhaustion. It sounds very simple, but it is not easy to achieve. But given these times when we spend so much time at home, I thought this could be the best time to try it out.
Is water fasting for me?
Do not do water fasting:
You are under 18
If you are underweight
Did not consult your doctor or did blood tests to determine if you are fit
You suffer from an eating disorder
If you have serious health complications
If you never fasted before
If you are alone the entire fasting
I am not your doctor and I cannot take any responsibility for your action and whether you decide to do it or not. In this article, I share my experiences and the knowledge I gained from doing water fasting.
How to prepare for water fasting?
If you are fasting for the first time in your life, you can start preparing your body for calorie deficiency by reducing your currently consumed food. By cutting down the calories for a couple of weeks, you can start feeling how you feel less hungry as your stomach shrinks.
Personally, I don't take any medication, I am not underweight, I have a strong immune system, I am not addicted or have taken any caffeine in the last 6 months as well as alcohol since January 1st. 2020. Additionally, two weeks prior to my experiment, I have done a blood analysis in the local hospital and my doctor confirmed that I am healthy. So, if you are in a similar situation, contact your family doctor and discuss the potential benefits and risks.
What are the dangers?
Water fasting can be very dangerous if you are generally not well and meet any of the criteria mentioned above. Also, if you have been drinking coffee regularly and have a sweet tooth on the daily basis, you might suffer from caffeine and sugar withdrawal. Besides, during the fasting prepare for the following:
You always feel cold - cold hands, cold feet, might experience shivering
Coating tongue - for the first 1-2 days your tongue will be coated, I was brushing my teeth and my tongue 4 - 5 times per day
Dizziness - whenever you quickly get up or stand up you might feel dizzy, be
aware of that
General weakness - it might get difficult to tell a long story or speak a lot. You will feel how everything just slows down and you cannot exhaust yourself
Lack of sleep/dreaming about food - no joke, the second night I was dreaming about green salads with lime juice and carrots. As well, from day 4 I would have a lot of energy to do things and go to bed at midnight, but I could only sleep for around 5 - 6 hours
Know when to stop - I choose 5 days as my optimal choice for this experience. I promised myself that I would stop at any given moment and not push myself if I really feel not well. Stick to your original plan and don't go for extra days if you are not sure about it from the beginning.
What I learnt from this experience
My biggest takeaway from all of it is that I started seeing food differently.
We don't need to eat 5 times per day - I understood that of going without any food for 5 days and still being able to function and do my job
I want to choose whole foods - the more the food is processed, the harder it is for our bodies to digest and process it. Choosing whole foods instead of refined and processed - benefits our well being
Our bodies are intelligent - if we give them the right fuel and let them rest enough, they can make wonders with time and significantly improve our lives
Food tastes so much better - it really does, the first sip of juice after 5 days of only drinking water - is something out of this world
Breaking the fast
There is a whole scheme on how to correctly break your fast. I will talk about it in the next week's video and article. Stay tuned!