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Fasting for Weight Loss
Water Fast vs Juice Fast
Ask A Healer Healthy Weight Loss Series
Fasting for Weight Loss - Cautions and Healthy Suggestions for an Optimal Fasting Experience
by N J Howell
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I am a proponent of sensible fasting, both as a practice that can benefit physical health and a practice that can benefit spiritual health. I appreciate the benefits more on a health level than using fasting for weight loss. Done correctly, fasting can help a weight loss plan by helping the body detox and clear out stagnant waste but it should only be one facet of the overall weight loss plan.
There are different types of fasting and what I'm referring to is a water fast, where no nutrition at all is taken in and only water is consumed for the duration of the fast.
Water fasting deprives your body of it's normal source of energy, glucose and fats. If you do this very long, your body will start eating it's own protein stores, which means literally eating tissue mass. Therefore, even though you may lose weight on a water only fast, water fasting for weight loss will be ultimately counter-productive as you will sacrifice muscle for pounds.
If your diet has not been the best, then think about having to live on the nutrition in your diet for the past few days ... This is what your body has to do when you water fast. What you have in your body, by way of nutrients, is all your body has to draw on for maintaining electrolyte balance, etc. Whatever stores you have in your body are called upon for nutrition during a water fast. Most of us do not eat well enough for a water fast to be healthy longterm.
However, by doing a nutritional juice fast first, and an internal cleanse if needed, your body's nutritional stores may be fortified. Then, a water fast may be more easily and safely done.
What is a juce fast?
Typically, a juice fast is one in which the person takes in a good quanity of nutritionally rich, naturally detoxing juices instead of any solid food or other foods. For optimal results, use only freshly juiced, organic juices. A fresh juice fast can be exceedingly helpful as part of a balanced weight loss and fitness regime. Not only do fresh, organic vegetables and organic, freshly-pressed fruit juices provide potent nutrition without stressing the digestive system, they are very detoxifying as well.
If you undergo a water fast, or even a nutritionally potent and healing juice fast and then return to your former eating habits, whatever weight loss you have achieved while fasting will come back and with a vengeance. Until you change the dietary habits that cause your body to hold more weight than is healthy, any diet or fast will give only temporary results.
I would add an additional caution if you have been diagnosed with diabetes. Fasting for the diabetic is a whole different issue due to blood sugar challenges. Read more if diabetic and considering fasting for weight loss: Fasting with Diabetes
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Health Care Disclaimer: There are certainly times when fasting can help the body rest during illness and begin to recuperate. Losing weight is not a health threat for the majority of us. We want to lose weight to feel better. Therefore, fasting is a rather drastic
way to do that when gentler methods exist. If morbidly obese, or under a doctor's care for any existing condition, always check with your doctor before undergoing a fast, particularly a water fast.