For millennia, whether a hunter or a gatherer, man always experienced periods of feasting and scarcity in the natural biological cycle. It is the modern 24/7 access to foods that is unnatural, and our bodies are now paying the price. Our genes haven’t had time to adapt to the embarrassing over-abundance of food that we have today. Our body still craves the natural cycles of abundance and scarcity that it evolved to expect.
Taking a break from food allows your mind and body to rest and recuperate and initiates the body’s own healing mechanisms.
“A fast can help you heal with greater speed; cleanse your liver, kidneys,
and colon; purify your blood; help you lose excess weight and water; flush
out toxins; clear the eyes and tongue; and cleanse the breath.”
James F. Balch, M.D., in Prescription for Nutritional Healing
Five benefits associated with fasting:
- Fasting relieves you of the worry about thinking about what to eat! And a short break from your habitual eating habits will help shed light on why you were eating that way.
- Fasting is a “reset” button for your sense of taste; the body and palette get cleansed of chemicals and impurities, giving you a keener ability to fully taste foods and more fully enjoy the true flavours of simple foods.
- Fasting can give you more energy. After you’ve passed through the initial detox symptoms, a fast will have you feeling lighter, more energetic, more enthusiastic, and requiring less sleep.
- Improved heart health, increased brain function, prevention of chronic diseases, increased life span, and loss of weight are some of the benefits of fasting.
- Modified fasts, or cleansing and detox diets offer the same benefits of fasting without being as restrictive.
What 24 hours of fasting can do….
• An increase in your #1 fat burning hormone by 700% (HGH)
• Turns on autophagy (body cleanup crew)
• Control of your “hunger hormone” and an end to cravings
• A decrease in your stress hormone so you burn more belly fat
• Increase in your brain function for better memory and concentration
• And a boost in your metabolism & energy
• Reduced risk of diabetes & an easing of symptoms
• Increased testosterone if you’re a man
• Increased insulin sensitivity so you can eat more & stay slim
• Faster weight loss
• Decreased inflammation so your joints heal & feel better
• Rapid cleansing & renewal of your body at a cellular level.
These improvements won’t necessarily be permanent. You have to move forward with better eating habits than you had before. You may need to make lifestyle changes in order to maintain your health. Occasional fasting is usually recommended to keep yourself in good condition. Three days per month and/or 10 days per year is considered good for this (Brad Pilon in Eat Stop Eat).
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