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Is fasting for you? We’ve all heard about it, but what exactly does it accomplish? Is it useful and healthy, or the best way to lose weight? Find out how fasting can make or break your health and nutritional goals. Learn about it and see for yourself!
What is Fasting and Why Is It Used?
Fasting is the act of going without food for a certain period of time. Fasting can range from cutting out certain types of food, to all food, or both. It’s an age-old method, traditionally practiced to promote reflection. Over the years, it’s been redesigned in many ways. People choose to fast for different reasons, including medical, religious, or to detoxify.
Myth or Truth—Is Fasting For Weight Loss?
Most people think that fasting is a f-a-s-t way to lose weight! That may be so, but unfortunately there are a few stop signs. Fasting to lose weight is unproductive, because it’s not a stable eating habit and it doesn’t teach you how to eat healthy in the long-term. You may lose the weight quickly, but it’s only water weight, and you’ll soon find that you’ll gain it right back when you revert to your regular eating habits. And because your body isn’t ingesting any calories, it naturally slows down your metabolism to adjust to conservation mode. You can even GAIN weight from fasting because once you return to your normal eating routine, your metabolism will stay at its slowed rate. To make matters worse, the muscle that you lost from the fast returns as fat. You can also end up binging when severe hunger strikes.
Detoxifying and Dangerous Disasters
It’s been told that fasting is an intense way to cleanse your body of chemicals and substances. However, there is no scientific evident that shows fasting cleanses your body. It can actually hurt your body by not providing enough fiber to your intestinal tract. But don’t think it’s the only way; your liver, lungs, colon, and skin all work to remove toxins in your body! Because fasting is a drastic measure, it can immediately impact your health. Side effects include muscle loss, dizziness, headaches, low blood sugar, muscle aches, weakness, and fatigue. It may be hard to fall asleep, and make your moods intense. Fasting to the point of starvation can have even more serious, potentially fatal, repercussions.
To Fast or Not To Fast
Fasting can have health benefits, when used the right way. But be careful, it can easily take a turn for the worse. The best method for effective, safe, and healthy weight loss is a healthy eating plan that is manageable and long-term. It is recommended to have a minimum of 1,200 calories daily, and should include fruits, vegetables, lean protein, whole grains, and healthy fats. It’s also important to get daily physical activity, whether it is a short walk outside, or an intense workout at the gym. There is much debate over fasting, and if it is a healthy approach to weight loss. Fasting is especially high-risk for the elderly, pregnant women, and children. As with any new practice, please consult your physician before fasting.