Fasting / Calorie Restriction Diet for Weight Loss & Cleanse
Reprinted by permission from Bill Faloon of The Life Extension Foundation
A 2003 report showed that the health benefits of sharply cutting calories (as occurs with periodic fasting) accrue even if the fast does not result in eating less overall (Anson et al. 2003). Benefits ranging from longer life, to less stress, and to greater sensitivity to insulin have been reported. Mice fed every other day, but allowed to gorge themselves on the days they were permitted food, had similar health benefits to mice on a diet reduced to 60% of normal food intake (Associated Press, 2003).
Some researchers believe that skipping meals will not result in injurious effects to fasters. Fasting aficionados believe that by fasting three days a month, people will heal faster and extend their lives by several years (a 3-day fast helps rid the body of toxins; a 5-day fast is thought to start the healing process) (Healing Celebrations, 2002; The Associated Press, 2003).
Although fasting is touted as one of the oldest and surest ways to establish good health by promoting internal cleansing and healing, normalizing blood pressure and cholesterol, rebuilding the immune system, and reversing the aging process, it is not without its critics. Because The Life Extension Foundation is committed to improving the health of the public and increasing life span, both sides of the fasting issue will be presented.
Begins at the Cellular Level
Natural hygienists believe that one cause of disease is toxin saturation at the cellular level. Every function the cell performs produces waste products (toxic materials that are incompatible with cellular health). Cells have capacities for ridding toxins, but these pathways can become saturated and overwhelmed. If the body becomes overwhelmed, it will try to rid its toxins through other mechanisms that manifest as colds, inflammation, and skin eruptions. Toxemia has been described as nature's way of eliminating toxins.
The body is fully capable of healing itself if these toxic accumulations are stopped and proper nutrients provided. Conversely, there is a clear connection between systemic toxicity and development of many debilitating health conditions. Biochemical suffocation' (or the interference with normal cell metabolism) is the principal cause of disease and aging. Some believe that life is only as strong as the weakest vital link, the cell.
Because toxic waste products interfere with the functioning of the cell, it is important that toxins and dying cells are eliminated from the system as efficiently as possible. This elimination stimulates growth of more functional cells. As your cells go, so goes your health. Cleanse and nourish your cells, and you're on the road to better health (Airola 1977; FCI 2002; Nison 2003).
and Cellular Toxicity
Within 24 hours of food restriction, digestive enzymes stop entering the stomach and instead other enzymes are released into the intestines and bloodstream, where they circulate and digest waste materials of daily living. Advocates of fasting believe that the body will first decompose and burn those cells and tissues which are diseased, damaged, or aged, e.g., dead cells and morbid accumulations (tumors, abscesses, and fatty deposits). Renowned advocates of fasting refer to fasting as a means of burning the rubbish (Saxion, 2002). Essential and vital organs, such as nerve tissue and brain, are not damaged during a well-planned fast.
Starvation can have pronounced effects on major body systems and organs. The basic metabolic response to starvation is to preserve vital tissues and create energy. Eventually, following prolonged starvation, the body survives by use of essential tissues for energy, including muscles and organs. Liver and intestines typically lose higher percentages of their weight during starvation, followed by the heart and kidneys. Reduction in heart size may lower blood pressure and pulse rate. Total starvation is usually fatal in 8-12 weeks, depending on body size. Long-term dehydration ultimately leads to kidney failure (Pale Reflections 1998; Merck 1999)
to Lose Weight
and Therapeutic Objectives
Mice fed every other day were more protected from diabetes and Alzheimer's disease than mice on low-calorie or unrestricted diets (Anson et al. 2003). The mice consumed the same amount of calories in the long term. A third group of mice were fed a low-calorie diet with 40% fewer calories. When given a neurotoxin that damages nerve cells similarly to Alzheimer's disease, fasted mice had fewer damaged nerve cells than mice on unrestricted or low-calorie diets. Fasted mice had lower insulin levels, implying a lower risk of developing diabetes (Mercola 2003a).
Studies showed that 70% of the patients with psychiatric disorders improved with fasting (FCI 2002). Other researchers have observed that fasting patients with psychosomatic disease had an 87% success rate (Christian Century 1977; AFL 2000).
Best Way to Fast
Do not chew gum while fasting; it promotes release of digestive enzymes. During a fast, the stomach is void of solid foods so enzymes can injure the stomach lining. Avoid mints and hard candies. Following the fast, there is a loss of appetite for caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, sugar, and junk foods.
Typically, a well-planned fast allows normal workload, exercise, and study habits. During a fast, walking and deep-breathing exercises provide fresh air to cleanse the blood, effectively regenerating and revitalizing body functions. It is important to get rest, especially when fatigued. Some fasters prefer a weekend fast with less demanding schedules.
Support for a Successful Cleanse
Dry brush massage (morning and evening) is a helpful adjunct to detoxification (over a pound of waste products is discharged through the skin every day). Use a natural bristle brush (the size of your hand) with a long handle. Avoid nylon or synthetic fiber brushes because the sharp, unnatural bristles can damage skin. Brush the entire body except the face. First brush the feet and legs, then the hands and arms, and lastly the back, abdomen, chest, and neck (Airola 1977). Brush for at least 3 minutes, producing a warm, glowing hue. Avoid aggressive brushing that may damage the skin. Remember to always brush toward the heart. All lymph vessels have one-way valves, which drain towards the heart, emptying into the large blood veins leading to the heart. After brushing, take a hot shower (3 minutes in duration), followed by a 10-20 second cold rinse. Repeat this procedure three times. If the hot/cold showers are too extreme, a warm shower can be used. Follow the shower with a rubdown with either a sponge or towel to remove dead skin.
The cleansing process is performed by a number of organs, glands, and transportation systems, including the alimentary canal, kidneys, liver, lungs, lymphatic system, and mucous membranes. The skin is regarded as the largest eliminative organ. It is estimated that one-third of all body impurities are removed through the skin's tiny sweat glands, the so-called third kidney. Sweating is an effective means of purification. One-third of all diseases could be cured by sweating according to 17th century physicians.
Liquid Intake while Fasting
Drink freshly prepared juice made from a combination of any of the following (ideally organic) fruits and vegetables: spinach, dandelion, parsley, kale, celery, apples (with seeds and skin), and carrots. Raw fruits and vegetables are perfectly compatible when eaten together. Melons are the exception. Making the entire meal melon is an option. If refined sugar or flour is eaten during the same meal with fruits (except bananas, dates, figs, or raisins), within an hour or two, the sugars and starches will ferment in the digestive tract and cause acidosis (Walker 1986). Another juice combination may be prepared from three carrots, two stalks of celery, one turnip, two beets, one-half head of cabbage, a quarter bunch of parsley, and a clove of garlic (Healing Celebrations 2002). Other juice detoxifiers include fresh lemon, grape, and green drinks (prepared from leafy green vegetables). Dilute all juice with water (1:3 parts) and drink throughout the day. Avoid orange or tomato juice (because of their high acidity) and avoid using sweetened juices.
There are a number of juicers that are ideal for home application, but Champion Juicers (Albion Enterprises, 800-248-1475) is an excellent choice. During the fast, select juicing materials and teas that are specific to your health conditions (Balch et al. 1997; Horowitz 2001). For example:
Fiber Root Extract |
Life Extension Mix
Multi Formula |
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