3 Good Reasons to Fast for a Day
By Genevieve Cunningham
Fasting has become really hot in the fitness world. There are people who swear by its benefits. Many of these people follow a strict fasting routine every day -- a routine otherwise known as intermittent fasting. This usually involves fasting for as many as 16 hours per day. While this approach can definitely work, not everyone is quite so dedicated to keeping their stomachs empty. So what can you do to get the benefits of fasting without going to the extreme? Take a look at why an occasional fast day may be just what you need to stay healthy.
To Let Your Digestion Rest
Anytime you put food into your body your digestion system goes to work. It's breaking down food, taking what it needs, and getting rid of the rest. If we're constantly filling our bodies with food, then this system is constantly working. And if we're eating too much, we're probably asking too much of the digestive system and it has a hard time keeping up. Allowing a fast day once in a while gives your digestive system a much needed rest. It allows it to catch up. If you've ever noticed digestive problems, it might not be a bad idea to let it reset.
To Gain Self-Control
Fasting isn't easy. We might feel hunger pains. We might get cravings. But the truth is that most of the hard part of fasting is in the mind. We're used to the habit of eating. We're used to boredom eating. We're used to that quick satisfying feeling. Practicing fasting from time to time also enables you to practice self control. And the more self control you have, the easier it is to carry out other healthy habits as well.
To Reset Your Diet
There are times when we get in the habit of eating bad foods. We reach for the after work candy bar for an energy burst. We reach for a second soda with dinner. These are just habits. A fast day might help you break these habits and restart your diet. Some people find that a fast day makes it easier to make good choices the next day. If you ever feel like your diet is out of control, make a plan, opt for a fast, and get it back under control.
Things to Remember
Before you start fasting, it's important to keep a few things in mind. Not all people should fast. If you have a health condition that prohibits it, don't do it! And if you have any concerns, ask your doctor first. You should also ease into and out of your fast. Don't follow a 24-hour fast with a giant fast food meal! Try a little water and a small meal. Get your ducks in a row before you begin your fast, and you're much more likely to be successful.
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Castle Rock, Colo.