My Three-Day Water Fast
I have just completed my first three day water fast! Here are the details. For three days (~80 hrs) I ate no solid food. I did allow myself one cup of black coffee each day, and the first day I drank a cup of chai. I drank over a half gallon of high quality water per day. At no point during the fast was I starving. In fact humans can survive for weeks without food.
Food allergies and sensitivities are chronic in our modern culture and the gut takes on much of this burden. When we fast the digestive system gets to take a break from assimilating food and is allowed to heal. When we fast the body generates energy through ketosis, which means we are burning fat held in tissue and organ deposits instead of sugars from the liver. Reduced caloric intake has been demonstrated to increase life span. Fasting can also help to rebalance intestinal flora and fauna, which has an impact on how we feel via the gut brain.
During the fast I stayed active, working, bike riding, and exercising. My mental clarity improved, my sleep improved, and my will power feels heroic! Fasting provides a novel challenge to the brain, which promotes adaptive changes in its functionality
It is important to break a fast slowly by introducing more and more complex foods throughout the day. I broke my fast with good company at the Samba Rock Cafe. Fasting also freshens the taste buds. I can tell you that first bite of Acai bowl was EXTRAORDINARY! I chose a cup of vegetable soup for lunch and sushi for dinner. One thing I noticed right away was that I did not want to eat my normal portion size. I found that I could really feel that voice in my belly saying, "thank you for feeding me, but I have had enough."
In summary, I believe this three day water fast had multiple benefits. I feel like my body and mind have been upgraded. Fasting purists would raise issue with me drinking coffee in the morning. For me I felt a need for a bit of am A.M. pick me up. Maybe it was a matter of habit. There is also a side benefit to coffee in its ability to stimulate intestinal movements, which is beneficial when there are no solids to move.
To prepare for my fast I consulted with an experienced faster and did online researched. I found the TEDx talk by Mark Mattson to be very informational. I encourage you to do your own research before starting your fast. Of course consult with a medical doctor if you have questions or concerns about your bodies ability to healthily sustain a fast.