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FASTING advive needed.....

Hello Everyone,

I'm in the second day of a four or five day fast (depending on how I feel) and was hoping to hear from people with experience with fasting.

This is my first fast. From the start I want to make it clear I am not doing this for weight loss but for health, so please don't start with anorexia comments. Fasting occasionally has been proven beneficial for health.

I'm 24 years old, a tiny bit over weight (maybe 5 or 10 pounds) but healthy. I normally drink a lot of water anyway, but ever since yesterday (first day of fast) I am so incredibly thirsty I can't believe it. I"m going through 4 litres of water a day and about 6 cups of caffeine free herbal tea. Is this normal? I feel so dehydrated no matter how much I drink I can't quench my thirst, and my lips dried and out and cracked.

I'm still eating a tiny tiny bit of food, I guess because I am too afraid to go with nothing. In the morning I eat a small bowl of raw veggies, no sauce or dip or anything, and the evening I eat a small bowl of fruit.

My energy levels have not changed, I feel fine, great even, except for this thirst!

Any input, advice, comments, or experiences would be greatly appreciated.


Mon. Jul 13, 10:21am

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The first thing that springs to mind is salt. Would you be ok with drinking a gatoraid or a V-8, something with sodium or electrolytes? I have no experience with fasting, but a lot of experience with dehydration.

Monday, July 13, 2009, 10:35 AM

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I agree with the PP. Your electrolytes could be out of balance. If this is the case you may want to stop fasting immediately. There may have been a lot of publications "proving" the benefits of fasting, but 99% of doctors would not recommend it. Instead of health benefits you could actually be doing your body a lot of harm.

Also, take note of the ingredients in your herbal tea. Some teas can have diuretic properties that could dehydrate you. There are known deaths associated with some teas and fasting (especially those "Diet Teas" which do nothing but dehydrate).

Monday, July 13, 2009, 1:38 PM

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You say you are doing this for your "health", but what you are doing is extremely unhealthy!! You could die from what you are doing to your body. I agree with the previous poster. You are watering down the electrolyte concentrations in you body and this is dangerous.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009, 6:50 PM

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not to scare you; but you might want to get a blood test done as well. Most places require you to fast anyway so you could do it in the am. I have heard that people with diabetes get very thirsty in first stages. Please ensure this is approved by your doctor before you continue.
Concerned peer

Wednesday, July 15, 2009, 12:37 AM

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You've got two problems, here: first, your electrolytes are unbalanced on account of how much water you've been drinking. Second, your blood glucose levels are too low, which is contributing to the insatiable thirst. It's probably not diabetes -- you seem to be in pretty good shape, health-wise. It's just that your live "dumped" a load of glycogen into your system after probably the first day and a half. Now, some of the chemical products of processing the fatty sugars your liver stored up (as insurance against starvation) are somewhat diuretic, if your kidneys are in optimum health (if you've stressed them out too much with caffeine, etc, then they're not as "reactionary").

The solution? Drink a half cup of gatorade every 2-3 hours (or, be kinder to your body, and eat a serving of fruit), and eat some protein at least twice a day. It doesn't have to be very much. A half-serving of lean jerky, a 1/4 of a chicken breast. Something like that. Proteins take longer to digest than the simple sugars found in fruits and vegetables, so you'll be getting a more consistent supply of nutrients. And, before you go to bed, make sure you eat an egg, or a cube of cheese. The fats in that will keep you from going into blood sugar "crash mode" in the middle of the night. Oh, as another aside -- if you follow my advice, you'll also need to incorporate a mild laxative. Try a senekot tablet at bedtime.

As to my qualifications in offering this advice? I've a background in biological sciences, I've done diet prep for diabetics, and I've been an anorexic, so I know all about starving oneself. Given that, I'm not going to dissuade you from your course of action -- it's your body. But I will advise that this is pretty much the only way you can "fast" in a healthy manner. Regardless of what you may read about the starve/binge prehistoric peoples' lifestyles, there's an inescapable fact: average lifespan was 43 throughout much of the Pleistocene.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009, 12:27 AM

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