Animals fast naturally and instinctively when ill. In less advanced and more primitive times humans periodically went without food during times of scarcity. Even burgeoning agrarian societies had times of the year in which food stores were low. Rationing and fasting would be the way through to the spring when natures bounty begins again to appear. Our modern civilization provides constant access to food, especially processed foods high in carbs, fats and sugar. This is a completely unnatural eating environment. We cannot, nor do we need to go back in time to live a more natural life style. All we need is some good old fashioned common sense and the internet!
There is ample research now available to show the many benefits of fasting regularly. This article from the "National Post", featuring Françoise Wilhelmi de Toledo points us to the benefits of fasting. As does the documentary pictured above, "The Science of Fasting", which follows researchers in Russia, whose work with fasting is now being used by medical researchers in the U.S. Forty some years eating naturally and fasting regularly it boggles my mind that we can be so oblivious, but at the same time I breath a sigh of relief that we are finally catching up to wisdom!
I challenge all of us to step out with faith in the instinctive truth of your body and fast one day this week. After a month of once a week fasting, go for three days in a row! I promise you the answers to weight loss and improved health will present themselves!
Bridge to Health Autumn Seasonal Detox is underway for 2019. For this Detox we are fasting so I wanted to take this time to add an update to this Fasting Blog.
A Benefit of Fasting - Resetting the Appestat
Years ago I set a New Years Resolution to, "eat then I was hungry and rest when I was tired". This simple resolution changed my life. I soon began to discover how many times I ate whenI was not hungry. And...how much I overworked myself, not resting as needed to recharge my batteries.
When we fast we discover food anew! Our appetite improves in that we are attracted more clearly to foods that will nurture our bodies. We discover the simple natural flavors of whole foods are more satisfying than junk foods. We become more sensitive to greasy foods which taste rancid and slimy compared to whole foods. We are more able to stop eating when we are full or just short of being full. After fasting overeating is painful and unpleasant, helping us to stay on track.
I encourage all of you after your fast to pay attention to hunger signals, real hunger in the belly as growling. Use that cue to let you know when to eat. As you do you will find yourself falling into a balanced routine that may vary from your pre-fast eating schedule. I promise if you learn to eat only when hungry you will never have to concern yourself with losing weight!
Moderation in all things, such a wise saying. As a nation we are not very good at this! Let's see if we can start to develop our common sense. Especially when it comes to EATING!
There are a lot of fad eating plans out there, the latest craze in diets, diet drugs, paleo eating (more about this later), vegan, raw food, vegetarianism. With a minute, that last one may have some validity. The longest lived people in the US are Seventh Day Adventists who eat a vegetarian diet. This is a diet rich in variety of whole foods, cooked, raw, fermented, beans, legumes, nuts, seeds, grains, fruits and vegetables.....HMMM and natural healthy sources of oils!
There a great documentary by Michael Pollan, "In Defense of Food", it gives a great overview of how Americans got so confused about what to eat. Tracing many of our modern premature aging diseases to a lack of healthy fats in the diet and an overload of sugar! Watch it! The paleo promoters are on the right track in some respects, but unless your going to become a hunter gatherer, it's impossible to follow and possible unhealthy in the long run to eat the amount of meats recommended. Colon cancer can be directly correlated to the consumption of beef. Modern researchers have been making great strides in proving this point. The beef Americans are eating are fed corn, they are by this diet FAT, their meat is high in fat. There are many healthier choices if you are going to consume meat. That's another blog topic for later.
I have over the 40 years since I first began to consider what I was eating and how it was making me feel, tried every type of alternative eating. Raw food, vegan, vegetarianism. I have had times when I ate fish, eggs, cheeses moderately. The one diet I can tell you for certain will make you ill is the Standard American Diet. My search for healthier eating started from being made sick by the S.A.D. Raw food is hard to maintain, some vegetables yield their nutrients through cooking. Most raw foodies are also vegan. It takes a lot of focus to go all raw and older bodies don't do as well on all raw. Vegan requires the same focus, it can be done, variety is the key.
Several years ago, my husband (a Paleo if ever there was one) and I had some analysis done of our nutrient levels. The doctor was certain I would show deficient, especially in B vitamins because of my vegetarian diet. Much to his surprise my nutritional levels outranked my husbands and most predominantly in the B's including B12! Why? I ATE MORE VARIETY OF FOODS THAN HE DID, INCLUDING, WHOLE GRAINS, NUTS, SEEDS, LEGUMES, RAW AND COOKED VEGETABLES, FRUIT, GOOD SOURCES OF OILS, OLIVES, AVOCADO, COCONUT AND OLIVE OIL. I ALSO FAST THREE TO FOUR TIMES A YEAR AND STOP EATING WHENEVER I FEEL ILL, LIKE ANIMALS DO!
Boiling it down, the average American has lost the instinct to know what to eat and when. The S.A.D. diet destroys your appestat. The low nutrition leaves you craving food all the time, the high sugar, carb and fat combo is a killer. A sensible restorative detoxification regime provides a transition out of the addiction cycle of the S.A.D. diet and can sedge-way you into a healthier more balanced diet along with a return of the natural instinct to eat, only when hungry!
COMING UP NEXT: FASTING, WHAT HAVE THE RUSSIANS BEEN UP TO!
Beginning my Bridge to Health Wellness Consulting practice has been a dream of mine for years. I imagine my clients who have the courage to find their bridge to health will go onto empower others they love to do the same. We are living in a society that is finally sick of being sick. Many are stuck in the medical/food industry mill that seems to have one goal in mind profiting from your ill health! Pharmaceutical drugs are often the first choice of treatment, leading many down a slippery slope of premature aging.
But, the good news is that many in the medical community have begun to apply the research needed to prove the wise saying of Hippocrates, "let they food be they medicine". Having followed this truth my entire adult life, I am happy to see such a dramatic turning of minds unfolding at this time.
Here's to those who can be brave enough to find their way across that bridge to health and wellbeing, may we all pass this message lovingly onto others.
Certified Wellness Consultant speaks up!