Ever noticed the only difference between the word ‘fasting’ and ‘feasting’ is the letter ‘e’? Interesting! In my opinion, not only is fasting an adventure, a kind of extreme sport for the body and the mind, it is also a feast for the senses, for vitality, sexual energy, for clarity of thinking and the best detox program ever created.
Even Benjamin Franklin believed, ‘The best of all medicines is resting and fasting.’
But let me be clear, before I go any further: intermittent fasting and starvation are not the same thing, not at all. They are as different from each other as chalk and cheese, yin and yang, rainforest and desert. One is about shriveling and deprivation, the other stimulates growth and enrichment on all levels. Fasting makes the blood alkaline, as a result, my mind is clear, sharp and at my service. My body is more inclined to move and dance, and my whole being is in a natural state of gratitude and joy.
Intermittent fasting gives our bodies a chance to recharge, to fortify our immune system and regenerate cells. Fasting is to the great visionary spiritual leaders, what sunshine and rain are to plants and trees. It produces miracles! Fasting is a sacred time when my body is super hydrating and soaking in liquids like the Sahara desert. I drink copiously, keeping my body well and truly hydrated with regular, delicious and super nutritious fruit and vegetable juices, which feed my body naturally on a cellular level.
I understand, many of you would rather stick pins in your eyes than go without food for a few hours, never mind three days or more. You are not alone. I used to feel the same way. At some point during history, we, in the western world, got the idea that we need, in fact, we are entitled to, three meals, plus countless snacks, each and every day. This has become so enshrined in our belief system that we feel alarmed and worry we’re going to get sick or die, if we skip a few meals here and there. In fact, some people have taken this three meal a day mantra to extremes – obesity, type 2 diabetes, cancer, sugar, alcohol and fat-fueled heart attacks and strokes are literally killing us in droves. For too long, we have been overloading our bodies with a fatal abundance of super toxic foods and sodas. It is no coincidence that gluttony is one of the seven deadly sins is it? We’ve asked our bodies to work overtime, 365 days a year, day in, day out, year after year. Maybe, our overtaxed bodies need, not more and more food spooned into them, but a vacation, a rejuvenating detoxifying retreat, a fast, a rest from food. There’s a thought!
Speaking of cancer, when I was diagnosed with life-threatening ovarian cancer in my 20’s, I defied the doctors. Instead of submitting to the standard medical response of chemotherapy and surgery, I put myself on a strict juice fast/enema regime. Fasting in this way saved my life, yes actually saved my life! What more do you need to know about the dramatic benefits of fasting!
Fasting was my vehicle for healing, cleansing and ultimately, changing my life. Fasting purged my body. But not only the body. It healed my mind and my spirit too. Now, a couple of decades later, my body is cancer free and supremely healthy, my life is vibrant and full of joy. Fasting performed miracles in my life. No wonder, I’m a committed faster!
Yes, I fasted when I was sick, really sick and it literally saved my life. I also fast regularly when I’m not sick. Fasting is part of my existence. It’s my way of caring for myself, of heightening and intensifying my experience of life. It puts me in a state of bliss. Honestly!
Let’s think for a moment about the natural world. What do wild animals in forests and jungles instinctively do when they’re sick? Gorge on rich food? No, they fast. Really! With no doctors or drugs to hand, they allow nature to run its course. They cure themselves by not eating until they are well again. Have they got the right answer and we, supposedly more highly evolved beings who run to the pharmacy for symptom-relieving drugs every time we are sick or in pain, got it wrong? Maybe, we should follow their good example. Fasting allows nature to heal us without the use of a surgical knife or medication. Why is it then not widely recommended or prescribed by the western medical profession as an effective treatment? Could it be that because fasting is more or less free, costing no more than the fruit and vegetables needed for juicing? With the profit motive driving drug companies, they have a lot to lose from drug free treatment and a healthier, happier population. There’s a thought!
So, if you were one of those people who would gladly stick pins in your eyes rather than fast, have you been even slightly persuaded? I truly believe, from the bottom of my heart that fasting is both fantastic prevention and cure for physical illnesses and can also lift the spirits of depressed people.
If you are tempted to fast, some words of advice before you start. Personally, I prepare my body by eating vegan meals for at least a week before, and eating smaller portions. I may also do a three day fast before I choose to fast for seven days or longer.
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