Fasting: Why the Juice Is worth the Squeeze
Even though everyone doesn’t realize it, all human beings fast every day. In fact, this is where breakfast gets its name from: breaking your fast from the previous day or night. Of course, there are numerous different types of fasting, including spiritual fasts such as Lent and Ramadan. However, regardless of the kind of fast, it’s always advisable to consult with a doctor or health professional before starting. Individuals with anemia, diabetes, or adrenal fatigue must be particularly careful about choosing the right fast for them (if any fast would be healthy at all).
Studies on mice reveal that fasting slows the growth of cancerous tumors and is “effective at suppressing tumorigenesis in mice genetically predestined to tumor development.” Mice that were more likely to develop tumors due to mutated genes were less likely to develop them when they were on a program of fasting. What’s more, research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition indicates that after 8 weeks of fasting, weight, body fat, total cholesterol, and blood pressure are reduced. Please read the list below to learn about more specific types of fasting.
#1: The Warrior Diet.
This involves fasting during the day and then eating a large meal at night. Fitness expert Ori Hofmekler is a proponent; eating small amounts of raw fruits and vegetables is still permissible throughout the day, as long as the only feast occurs within a 4-hour nightly eating window. Checkout the paleo diet to focus on whole, unprocessed foods.
#2: Juice fast.
It’s possible to obtain all nutritional needs from juice and water only. However, you do need to consume a wide variety of the right kinds of liquids.
#3: Spontaneous meal skipping.
This involves skipping meals whenever it’s convenient and manageable to do so. Basically, followers of this philosophy believe that starvation mode is a myth, and that as long as you consume healthy foods whenever you do eat, then skipping a meal every once in a while is an ideal way to reduce calorie intake.
#4: Alternate day fasting.
To adhere to this fast, don’t eat for 24 hours, and then eat regular meals the next day. This can be a difficult fast to follow, to say the least.
#5: Cleansing fast.
This calls for liquid drinks containing lemon juice, simple sugar, cayenne pepper, and other spices if desired. This fast will cleanse the colon of toxins if 6 to 12 drinks are consumed on a daily, regular basis. Do consult a professional to learn the right time period for you.
#6: 16-hour fasting.
Pick an 8 hour time period for eating, but don’t consume any calories during the other 16 hours of the day.
#7: 20-hour fasting.
Choose a 20 hour time frame for eating, and refrain from taking in calories outside of this window.
#8: The 5:2 diet.
#9: Multiple day fasting.
Fasting for more than two days demands adequate and proper preparation. Begin with a juice fast a day in advance, but do consult a doctor or a health professional to ensure you don’t attempt to fast too long.
#10: Religious fasting.
As alluded to, many fasts are related to religion, spirituality, or ritual. The Daniel Fast is modeled after the book of Daniel in the Bible, and the Jewish Tzomot involves seven different religious fasts over a 365 day period. Ramadan spans an entire month, and food can only be consumed during nighttime.
Keep in mind that research in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition suggests that fasts do not normally result in counterproductive binge-eating. In fact, 25 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio three days each week is usually enough to make fasting manageable.
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