Fasting for Health BenefitsBy Darren McDuffie
Are you presently fasting for health benefits? I know from experience when people think of fasting they usually think about starving. Fasting isn’t something we voluntarily do because food is so plentiful and who would want to give up all the delicious goodies that are available to us? It takes a lot for someone to just simply say “I want to give up food” today because we have been taught we need 4 things in life to live. Those four things are air, water, shelter, and of course food! So, it makes it very hard to change our mindset to abstain from food in order to realize the amazing health benefits it provides. But…was it always like this?
But, if you mention abstaining from food outside of those frames of reference it immediately gives people visions of starving, their bodies shutting down, and speeding towards an impending death.
How is that so? How have we been “tricked” into believing we constantly need food? I can give you several reasons why but I’ll refrain from doing it here so I won’t get the anti-conspiracy theorists in an uproar.
Years ago, our ancestors frequently fasted just because they had to as they didn’t have supermarkets to go to where they could pick food off shelves and place it in their shopping carts. It just wasn’t like that so whatever they ate in most cases had to be caught or picked and they could go for long periods of time without catching or picking anything.
See, if you have to catch or pick your food you may fall into periods of dry spells where you just can’t trap or find things to eat. It’s just the nature of the beast.
I’ve experienced this myself where I’ve had the best intentions of going out to catch fish and after spending 4 or 5 hours on the boat, all I’m left with are cans of empty bait and a suntan. You just come up empty sometimes but unlike my ancestors, I have the luxury of being able to walk into a supermarket and buy the fish I didn’t catch a couple of hours ago.
It just wasn’t like that for our ancestors so if they didn’t catch or pick anything to eat they would have to “fast” until they were able to finally find food.
I bet if you could take a snap shot of what they looked like back then, not one of them would be overweight…you can’t say that today, now can you?
There is some amazing evidence as to why you may want to start fasting for health benefits and I thought I would share a few with you today. Some of these are scientific but some of them are things I’ve noticed from my own experiences with abstaining from food on a regular basis.
- Decreased Insulin levels and decreased insulin sensitivity – Most people today have high insulin levels as result of the increased amounts of sugar they’re consuming. White sugar and high fructose corn syrup are in most products today which was unheard of in past years. This is one of the biggest reasons why there is a diabetes epidemic in America because with the increase of sugar the pancreas has to secrete more and more insulin to drive blood sugar levels down. This usually results in insulin sensitivity which manifests into diabetes and obesity. Fasting helps promote the normalizing of insulin levels in the body.
- Increase in Growth Hormone Levels – Fasting helps to increase growth hormone levels. This is important if you want to build muscle, feel better and look younger. It’s the natural way to do it without using synthetic hormones.
- Digestive System – Abstaining from food for brief periods of time gives your digestive system a break and can also cut down on gas and bloating in the body. It can also help with constipation.
- Detoxification – By fasting, you can clear the lymphatic system which will give you renewed mental alertness and focus. This is one of the main reasons why fasting has been connected to consciousness.
- Hypertension – Fasting is a great way to lower blood pressure.
- Food Addiction – Many people are addicted to food in our culture. We are bombarded with food at social events, work, etc. Fasting is a great way help control the impulse to eat for no reason. This has been a big help for me personally to avoid unnecessary eating when I’m not hungry.
- Decreased Body Fat Levels and Weight – You can strategically use fasting to lose body fat and get to the weight you desire. If you don’t believe me check out Leangains.
- Energy – Abstaining from food can give you more energy! It may sound weird but I’ve experienced this myself wheen I’ve felt like I caught my second wind after fasting for an extended period of time.
- Longevity – In recent studies, people who fast on a periodic basis live longer.
Bonus – Reduction in Weight Gain – You can use fasting as a way to splurge on your eating. I just recently used this during the Thanksgiving holiday as I fasted part of the day and when it was time to eat, I ate what I wanted without worrying about adding any pounds!
Abstaining from food for brief periods used to be considered a crazy thing to do but judging by the way our society looks today, it can be instead considered the right thing to do to increase good health. Fasting has been sitting right under our noses for years but no one ever looked at it as a way to increase health and vitality.
Most of the time the answers are simple but society complicates them as a means to increase profit and keep people chasing their tails.
Always keep it simple and one way to do this is to start fasting for health benefits.
PS. I don’t usually overly promote anything on this blog but I was convinced fasting was the right choice for me after reading Eat Stop Eat and since I bought it 3 years ago, It has been constantly updated with more information on the benefit of fasting. I highly recommend it if you might be considering fasting for health benefits.
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Yours in Health,
Darren “Health With a Heart” McDuffie
PhatBody FitShop Instructor
Darren McDuffie is a fitness trainer and real food activist. In 2005, he lost his mother to breast cancer and although tragic it was a blessing in disguise. Through this tragedy, he used his inside information as a former pharmaceutical representative to expose the deceit of Big Food and Big Pharma.
Big Food & Big Pharma Exposed!
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