Thursday, September 15, 2016

Was it a Water-Only 3-Day Fast?

One of the questions I fielded from family and friends—and especially my concerned husband—was whether or not I was adding any other calories to my day.

While ideally my three-day fast would have consisted of only water—warm, room temperature, and cool to change it up a bit—as you’ll notice in my graphic below that records what I drank, I found I couldn’t maintain a simple water-only regime.

In my not-extensive-enough research prior to embarking on this journey I found some sites recommended the consumption of up to 200 calories a day, mostly in the form of honey, organic cider vinegar, and lemon juice. I didn’t want to add any calories since the study that I noted in my first blog post on this journey promoted a water-only fast, as does Jonathan Turley’s first-person account of his own successful three-day water-only fast.

Listening to the needs of my body

However, in Day One I had a scant couple of calories of honey mid-day, and ended the day with a crushing headache that prompted another 10 or 11 calories of honey. I hadn't caught it soon enough and soon found myself with a migraine. I chose to shut down my painful symptoms with a generic Excedrin and half a Dramamine. It was the right decision for me, but admittedly may not be ideal for the purpose of the fast. I own that.

The next two days I added black coffee, sometimes with half a teaspoon of honey, consuming it at the regular times of day I ordinarily drink it. More research during my fast revealed that caffeine addicts frequently experience the headaches caused by withdrawal. For my next three-day fast, I will prep several weeks ahead, finally kicking my caffeine habit once and for all before I attempt the water-only fast. Yes, I do believe I will be embarking on this journey again.

Breaking fast can be hard to do

You can see that I broke the fast at 7:50 pm on Day Three. That’s because I technically began at 7:45 on Saturday prior to Day One. As I mentioned in my first post, I’ve taken up the daily routine of a 12-hour fast. Since I am a natural early riser, and because breakfast is often my favorite meal of the day, I decided months ago to make eight pm my latest target time to stop eating for the day.

If you’re considering embarking on your own three-day fast, I hope you can learn from my missteps and my successes. Of course, you should do your own research. And consultation with a physician or a natural caregiver is helpful (and recommended in most every narrative you’ll read). I did mention that I was considering the fast to my holistic nutritional advisor at Bridge to Natural Wellness who had a few notes for me, but seemed to sense that I was determined to make this journey on my own terms.

And what a journey’s it’s been…and continues to be. My next post will sum-up my three days post fast. Bon appetit!

Note: My fruit, cider vinegar, & lemon juice was organic. The honey is local. 
Another note: The Tibetans refers to the Five Tibetan Rites exercises of Yoga poses that are completed in sets of three up to as many as 21 at a time, explained a bit HERE and on several other sites. I've done these nearly daily since the beginning of the year after choosing this as one of my New Year's Resolutions. Over the past several months I built up my number of repetitions to 21, but you can see that number dropped during the fast and in post fast. I hope to build up to 21 again soon. I also hope to do these daily the rest of my life. I tend to follow my Tibetans with meditation, another reason I am so devoted to my daily practice.

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