What is fasting? According to me, it’s taking your body into starvation mode. Why do people fast? Fasting, in the various forms that people have observed throughout history, has been known to have a beneficial effect on health. However in a religious context, it is primarily a technique for seeking proximity to God and the divinity.
We are aware that every religion practices fasting in one form or another. For instance, Muslims follow Ramadan wherein they eat before sunrise and break the fast after sunset. Jains follows different patterns wherein some may eat only one meal per day, or some eat two meals, some don’t eat through the entire day and some fast for longer days (30 days)! Christians, follow lent wherein they abstain from eating red meat/fish/eggs/wine and fast for an entire day on Easter!! Being a nutritionist, I would not recommend fasting at all. Eating is a normal part of human existence and abstaining from eating is disruption in the very human rhythm of life.
What exactly happens during fasting and why would I not recommend it? As I just explained, when your body is in the starvation mode, initially some kilos would shed in terms of water and muscle mass, which will make you feel happy. But, the moment you start eating or come back to routine from that starvation mode, the weight would bounce back instantly. In fact you end up gaining more weight that you lost during fasting. The logic is it lowers your basal metabolic rate (BMR) (you tend to expend few calories) which in turn leads to gaining weight!
I would say eat to lose! I always recommend that one should eat at timely intervals to maintain the BMR. The basic idea is, higher your BMR, higher the chances of shedding kilos-provided you eat healthy stuff.
Now let’s talk of detoxification, what exactly does detoxification mean? It means flushing out the toxins from your body which also relieves you from bloating, indigestion. It makes you lighter and energetic. Basically, it helps to rejuvenate self. People generally misconceive the idea of drinking lukewarm water with lime/ginger with weight loss! It’s a sheer myth. It would help in detoxifying your system more than helping you lose weight. If this was true, majority of the world’s population would have been slimmer!
There are many detox diets like, diuretic diet, fat flush diet, and clean diet and so on. If you ask me it’s unnecessary to go in for such diets when you can detoxify the body naturally. There are several ways to detoxify the system:
- Keep yourself well hydrated
- Avoid processed/junk food
- Avoid alcohol
- Get good sleep
- Eat lot of fibres
- Get indulged in good amount of activity
To sum it up; indulge in healthy eating which would make your life worth living! Stay fit and live a better life without welcoming any medical problems.
tejas Galani says
When am I getting appt ma’am…. hmmm…..
Tejas we have to fix an appointment asap before the D day 😉
Hi Ami Shah,
I totally agree that not eating at all is a very bad way to try to lose weight. It simple won’t work for the reasons you described.
But starvation might have other benefits. I have read that it’s in periods of starvation that the cells in the body heals and repairs. The 5:2 diet is based on that idea. It is said to lower the risk for cancer, among many things. What’s your comment to that?
Hi Tomas, thanks for your feedback. coming to your query, it is ‘Water fast diet’ where in you fast for 24hrs, 48hrs or 36hrs being only on lemon water which shuts down your digestive system which leads to repair of your cells and tissues. And yes after 3 days maximum, your diet has to be supervised definately. Also, 5:2 diet is a fad diet which has no relation with reducing the chances of cancer.
Thanks for sharing valuable information !