Humans have been practicing fasting for thousands of years to improve health. Weight loss is the most obvious benefit, but fasting can also detoxify the body and reduce the effects of chronic conditions. Fasting is not for everyone, however — don’t practice fasting if you have an eating disorder or serious illness, are pregnant or nursing, or you’re under the age of 18. If you’re taking prescription medication, talk to a medical professional before starting a fasting program.
Fasting is normal for the human body. In early human history, people didn’t have access to the abundance of foods we have today, so naturally they fasted between hunting and gathering episodes. Their bodies burned fat and managed their blood sugar levels until the next meal came around.
Our modern lifestyles are very different — we can eat almost anything we want at any time, leading to a host of health conditions. But you have the power to change your physical state through a practice that’s been around for millennia. Fasting may be able to help you:
- Flush out impurities
- Burn excess fat
- Feel more energetic
- Lower insulin and glucose levels
- Improve your cholesterol levels
- Create more mental clarity
- Reduce inflammation
Unlike expensive diet books, supplements, or programs, fasting costs you nothing. It’s flexible, too. You can fast for as little as a few hours, or for a day or more. The important thing is to do what feels right for your body.
You may find that your ideal fasting program includes eating your meals during an 8-hour time period each day, and fasting for the remaining 16 hours of the day. When done daily, this practice may effectively help you burn more fat, lose weight, and control your blood sugar. Some individuals are able to reverse their type 2 diabetes on a fasting schedule like this.
There are other fasting programs, like fasting for 24 or 36 hours, or consuming a limited number of calories on some days and eating normally on other days. Whichever program you choose, think of fasting as a way to restore balance to your body’s natural state.
If you’d like to talk about what fasting program is best for your body, call my office to schedule a consultation.