Suprisingly, not eating is one of the healthiest things you can do for your body. Fasting is the bodys natural way of healing itself and has been used throughout the generations. Upwards of 30% of the bodys energy is devoted entirely to digestive processes, and when digestion is no longer neccessary, the body can immediatly harnesses this extra energy and put it towards cleansing and healing.
Have you ever skipped a meal and a headache came on, or you felt irritated, stomach growled, etc? Well, none of these are signs of actual hunger, but rather the first stages of a detoxification phase, known as acidosis. As soon as the body has a chance, i.e. as soon as you haven’t had any food in you for a while, this detox phase will start. During acidosis the body cleanses itself of stored up toxins that are in the body due to poor diet.
The food we eat today is not exactly the cleanest and healthiest. Most of it is artificial, full of preservatives, pesticides, colorings, and hormones. (At least the typical American diet. Hunter-gatherers of the early North American continent are exempt) These all contribute in part to sickness, disease, premature aging, and even a reduction of the efficiency of internal organs. Fortunatly the body has a built in capability to cleanse the body – all you have to do is stop stuffing yourself with food long enough for the body to do its thing. So thats what I did.
heres a excerpt on acidosis from a great article about fasting:
“Mild states of acidosis are a common occurrence. While sleeping after the last meal of the day is digested bodies normally work very hard trying to detoxify from yesterday”s abuses. So people routinely awaken in a state of acidosis. Their tongue is coated, their breath foul and they feel poorly. They end their brief overnight fast with breakfast, bringing the detoxification process to a screeching halt and feel much better. Many people think they awaken hungry and don”t feel well until they eat. They confuse acidosis with hunger when most have never experienced real hunger in their entire lives. If you typically awaken in acidosis, you are being given a strong sign by your body that it would like to continue fasting far beyond breakfast. In fact, it probably would enjoy fasting long beyond the end of acidosis. ”
Acidosis is interesting. It lasted for about 4-5 days. The first couple of days I was pretty wasted. My body was heavily lethargic, as was my mind. I wasnt hungry, that passes after day 2 or so. So, with a mug of water as my constant companion I trudged around from couch to chair to bed, in which I would then set into in a most soporific manner. My rate of speech was severely curtailed as it seemed more effort was required to give verbal utterance. Toxins were obviously infusing my blood stream in preperation of exiting (through the pores). Apparently, years and years of toxins can be eliminated by extended water-fasts. If you want to go completely hardcore, you can clear it all out by doing an extended water fast – one day for each year you’ve been alive. However, you do need to build up to that, and 10 days is about right for a beginner. Also, if you’re extremely toxic you should do some pre-fasts, juice-fasts, and the like to prepare yourself so your own toxins don’t overwhelm you.
After acidosis is normalization and then accelerated healing. This is the is the good part. Its great to get some toxins out and cleanse the body, but I wanted to really set into it and let my body repair and heal itself. I came out of acidosis and could tell a huge difference. My mind became lucid and although my body was a little weak it wasn’t a big deal. My mind was going pretty well and I came up with book ideas, inventions, travel plans, and social insights. I also spent much time in a state of rest where my body could devote maximun energy to regeneration.
This is the part of fasting which is known to increase spiritual awareness, and indeed it does. I read the book of Proverbs every morning, which is the book of the wisdom of King Solomon. The opening of Proverbs:
‘A Wise Man Will Hear’
The proverbs of Solomon the son of David, king of Isreal:
To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding;
To receive the instruction of wisdom, justice, and judgement, and equity;
To give subtitly to the simple, to the young man knowledge and discrection.
A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels.
To understand a proverb, and the interpretation: the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.
Wisdom, justice, understanding… I’ll take it. I believe I gained alot of wisdom and revalation from this book which speaks on many aspects of life. For example, here is another quote:
My son, attend unto my wisdom, and bow thine ear to my understanding: That thou mayest regard descretion and that thy lips may keep knowldege. For the lips of strange woman drop as an honeycomb, and her mouth is smoother than oil: But her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as any two edge sword.
How true. Watch out for ‘strange woman’ i.e. – prositutues or whores. They may look good, but how much of a pain are they? Not worth it the hassle. Seems obvious, but how many have gotton burnt by a ‘strange woman’?
‘Her feet go down to death, her steps take hold on hell.’ (Shes a plane wreck)
‘Lest thou shoudest ponder the path of life, her ways are moveable…’ (and p.s. shes crazy)
So, this is some of the wisdom of King Solomon. If you don’t know who he was, he was basically an ancient king who if you ammassed his fortune today would be the richest man to ever live. He was also known to hold tremendous wisdom. One of the most famous incidents being the following: Two ladys in dispute over a baby brought the matter before the King. They each claimed to be the baby’s mother and so Solomon just said ‘Right then… just cut the thing in half and we’ll give a half to each of you.’ The real mother, out of instinct, protested vehemently that she would rather just let the other woman have the baby, thus Solomon knew who was the true mother and pronounced judgement.
Now remember, back then it was seriously hardcore, and if the King orders a baby cut in half, its actually going to get cut in half. Theres no standing up and being like ‘hey.. um. thats a baby, man. you shouldn’t cut that in half.’ Whoever says that is probably going to get cut in half too. In this atmosphere, both of them are completely exposed when the king says ‘ya, just chop it in two.’ So they were totally nailed in that moment. The reaction of the woman who actually wanted to take a baby that wasn’t hers was probably utter shock, while the reaction from the true mother in that moment was to throw her life before the king and protest publicly in order to save her kid. He called out the bluff in a brilliant use of position and with a bit of inspired wisdom. Kind of like me heads up against Beno.
Of course, that particular technique being now known might not exactly work again since the precedent has already been set, and everyone knows the whole ‘just cut it in half’ technique. But nevertheless it remains a jem and could probably be applied to other situations.
Back to the fast..
Breaking a fast is tremendously important. Reccomended as a first meal is stewed tomatoes, then for the next meal – cabbage with grated beets and carrots. After I had finished on the 10th day I had cabbage and carrots, but unfortunatly someone presented a South African Lemon Merange pie, so I had a small taste (piece) of that. Then they brought out lasagna and it happened to fall into my mouth. Then I chewed it.
After 10 days with no food the mind is sharp, the body is dragging a bit, and for me, I severely reduced the amount of communication that proceeded from my lips. I tended to exist in a sort of meditative state. I probably spoke more in the few hours after eating than I had for the past few days. I also noticed that my nose was clear and I was completely mucous free. My sinuses were finally not inflamed. Everything tasted wonderful. I mean, a peice of plain lettuce tasted fantastic. I’m convinced that its extrememly healthy to fast and would recommend it to anyone who is serious about their health. I would also recommend it to anyone seeking God. An interesting note is that the first part of proverbs notes that respect for God is the beginning of knowledge; but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
Really well written article:fasting
oh, p.s. I definitly dreamt of going to Pats and ordering an american & wiz wit. For you non-Philly people, I feel bad for you if you havent discovered the Philly Cheesesteak.