A couple of months ago, my aunt practiced a month-long water fast. In essence, she only drank water throughout the day. No food, no tea, no coffee, no milk and not even coconut or lime water. In short, it was nothing but just water!
When I got to know of this I was initially taken aback. I rushed to my aunt and asked if she was alright and what was the need to punish her body in this manner. To which my aunt replied, “I am doing this for religious purposes”.
Does Water Fasting Actually Help?
I am aware that fasting is an ancient, spiritual practice in many religions across the world. Also, fasting gives inner strength and confidence. But, like most of the traditional remedies, beliefs and practices have scientific reasoning and benefits attached. I was pretty sure water fasting would have some too. I researched on the benefits of ‘water only fast’ and was astonished to see multiple articles on the same that stated the various benefits of ‘Water Fasting’. Broadly, the benefits lie on the basic belief that the human body has self-healing abilities.
Water fasting gives improved energy and vigour. It removes mental blocks and gives clarity of mind. It also eliminates toxins from the body and can go a long way in preventing future illnesses. Water Fasting can improve immunity and has anti-aging benefits. The digestive system gets a break. All the energy that is used by our digestive system to break down foods, beverages, toxins, fats, and sugars, gets channelled to actual cleansing, detoxification, and repair of our vital organs, cells, and tissues. Many report a certain euphoria after a day or two of water fasting. You’ll likely feel a certain increase in energy as well, as you lose that slack, logy feeling.
After all the research and understanding about ‘Water Fasting’, I was naturally prompted to attempt water fasting for a day. I figured it wouldn’t hurt to give it a try just for a day and then post some tips from my personal experience which can be guidelines for others who wish to take this up for a day or two.
It was not easy for me or let me put it this way, if you have never attempted to do any kind of fast, this is going to be a little tough. Hence, I would like to share some tips and my personal experience which might inspire or support you to take up this challenge once in a week or probably a month.
Tips for Water Fasting
- The right day to take up this fast would be to choose a day when you have lesser activities planned. If there are excessive activities, then they consume a lot of calories and that will make you hungry
- Fasting should ideally start in the morning by drinking about two glasses of water which will clear your bowel movement
- Simple pure water is the best. Boiled or cool water will also do. Drinking 1 ½ liters to 3 liters of plain water in one full day depending on individual capacity is good. You can drink more if you are up for it. I honestly did not count mine
- Few bodily reactions which may seem scary but are considered normal and you all will experience as well if you are water fasting for the first time. Some of the signs are weakness, dizziness and nausea and these are common due to the sudden lack of food. I personally experienced a slight drop in blood pressure and headaches during the latter part of the day. The key to this is just lie down and relax whenever these symptoms become intense. The more difficult you find it, the more it means that your body has a lot of toxins to clean out
- Towards mid-day, you will feel a sudden bout of hunger. Just have one or two glasses of water to dilute the gastric secretions. Then lie down and take rest. The hunger should go away in a short time
- After having fasted, learning how to break a fast is important. As there is hardly any digestive activity during fasting, one should be very careful while breaking the fast. The best way to break a fast is with lime juice or orange juice which will make the stomach alkaline. It’s wiser to have few spices and no oily food during this time. Second meal of the day can be normal
All in all, I enjoyed my water-only fast of 24 hours. I look forward to doing this once every month. I recommend this to everyone to self-realize the benefits attached to this. If you can’t do 24 hours start off with 12hrs and then build it up as you get better and used to it. As we always say, take gradual and small steps to reach your big goals sooner. So Good luck! Use nature and natural ways as your best medicine to prevent as well as treat your body.