It was at dawn, while I was sitting beside my rose plant in my balcony, reading through all the comments on the last blog and slowly sipping in my warm herbal tea, a deep sense of gratitude and love filled my heart up. And the very next moment, I grabbed my journal to scribble something for the next blog. All I knew was- if my words could transform even one life, my purpose is served.
So, our last blog was all about whats and whys of fasting. And today it’s gonna be about different ways of Fasting. Hippocrates, the father of Western medicine, believed fasting enabled the body to heal itself.
Thrilled already? Let’s dive in.
HOW TO FAST
- Intermittent Fasting: Many of us have that pair of jeans hidden in the corner of our cupboard and we still fancy to fit into it someday. I have that too! And intermittent fasting has been a rage for all such reasons. This pattern of fasting is nothing unusual but a part of everyday life. It involves cycles of fasting and eating for a given time window. Intermittent fasting can be done in multiple ways. You can choose your regime as per your convenience.
- 16:8 – This is the most common method practiced by millions of people across the globe. It involves the fasting window of 16 hrs and an eating window of 8 hrs. Generally, this is done daily or on alternate days.
- 20:4- It’s 20hrs of fasting and 4hrs of eating window. So you should have one large, lengthy and nourishing meal.
- 5:2- It involves regular eating of meals for 5/7 days of week. And the remaining 2 days you can consume only 500 calories spread throughout the day. This version of intermittent fasting is the most supported by medical professionals.
2. Dry fasting: The second name of this is “absolute fasting”. Unlike every other fasting, where you are allowed to have water flexibly, in dry fasting you refrain yourself from having any food and water for a given period of time. Dry fasting is practiced by many communities as a part of their culture, for example Muslims during the month of Ramadan observe dry fast everyday from sunrise to sunset. Similarly, in Hinduism various festivals include dry fasting as a part of the ritual. See below for the benefits-
3. Circadian Rhythm Fasting: Circadian rhythm or body clock fasting is yet again a very effective method of fasting. According to experts, our body keeps a clock, which prepares us for sleep, meal time and hormone regulation and production. What’s more interesting is that we need to live holistically in this method, like to wake up with sunrise, eat at the peak of the day, a light dinner with sunset and fix our sleep time. Well! This one is my personal favourite.
Want to know what happens when we go by our body clock?? Check this out:
(A Pro tip to reap the benefits of all these at once: you need to do is to start with circadian way of fasting and then extend it to intermittent fasting as per your convenience, and also try to refrain from drinking water all these hours. In this manner, you can observe all three on a regular basis.)
So, now the question arises that are there any dos and don'ts of fasting?
- KEEPING A SHORT FASTING PERIOD: Start with a short fasting period. You don’t want to punish your body. So just see how you feel and extend the time gradually.
- DON’T FEAST DURING EATING WINDOWS: Always break your fast with something light such as dates, lemon honey drink and some sweet fruits.
- STAY HYDRATED: Other than your dry fasting days, make sure the other days you should stay well hydrated as dehydration can cause a lot of problems such as fatigue and brain fogging.
- GO FOR A WALK OR MEDITATE: Avoiding to eat during fasts can be difficult. The trick is to distract your mind. Try spending some time in nature and listen to some soothing music.
- STOP IMMEDIATELY If FEELING UNWELL: During fasting, your body undergoes a lot of stress because of which you may feel like fainting sometimes. If you sense it happening, stop at once and eat a fruit.
- KEEP YOUR WORKOUTS MILD: Yes! I know there are many who carry out regular exercises when on fast but if you are a new bee you must go slow and see how your body responds to it.
Remember, there are no strict rights and wrongs of fasting, so you must just listen to what your body says.
So, if you’re thinking that you’ve known it all about fasting, STOP THERE, we’ve got a lot more to share with you all. So, in the next blog I’ll talk about the Ayurvedic approach to fasting.
Till then you can dive deep into understanding the scientific and holistic approach of fasting, by reading a book which I personally recommend to all those who are treading this path. It’s by none other than Luke Coutinho.
See you very soon dear readers.
Author: Charu Rajpal | Editor: Taahira Kisna | Publisher: Kosha Life