Fasting is a very controversial topic. Almost every religion on earth, whether it is a part of the Abrahamic Religions or the Dharmic Religions, promotes different types of fasts. But is it healthy? Let’s find out.
Okay, so let’s see the benefits that people claim fasting provides them with. Some of them are:-
- Stabilization of blood pressure
- Healthier Skin
- More Energy
- Improvement with a wide variety of chronic degenerative health conditions, including autoimmune disorders
- Stabilization of bowel movements
- Loss of excess weight
- Better Quality Sleep
- Stronger and More Efficient Digestion
- Elimination of stored toxins
- Decrease or elimination of headaches
- Healthier teeth and gums
- A clean and healthy cardiovascular system
- Dramatic reduction or complete elimination of aches and pains in muscles and joints
Now, let’s analyze the so-called claimed benefits of fasting:-
- Stabilization of blood pressure – It is a well-known fact that both gluttony and starvation cause the blood pressure to rise. Fasting for more than a day can lead to starvation, which will ultimately lead one to have a high blood pressure.
- Healthier Skin – Vitamins A, C, B12, E and Zinc are popular for improving skin health. If you are fasting, it means you are not having food at all. How can this situation lead to a healthier skin?
- More Energy – We all read it in junior classes of our school that food gives us energy. No food, no energy. It’s just a temporary reaction that you get from fasting, don’t overeat and you will be energetic all day long.
- Improvement with autoimmune disorders – There is no way that staying hungry or starving can improve your autoimmune disorders. If you feel like it is helping your autoimmune disorder then there must be something wrong with your diet.
- Stabilization of Bowel Movements – If fasting stabilizes your bowel movements, it means you are not having enough fiber in your diet. It means you usually overeat and your food doesn’t have enough fiber in it. Corn, Cauliflower, Broccoli, Cabbage, Berries, Leafy Greens, Celery, Squash, Beans, Mushrooms and Oranges are all examples of fiber rich foods. You can also try having some coffee as it helped a lot in my case.
- Loss of excess weight – This one is obvious. No Food = No Calories, No Calories = Weight Loss.
- Better Quality Sleep – As mentioned before, food provides us the energy. When you don’t have much energy, you feel like sleeping all the time. All my friends when on Keto or Paleo diet, are sleepy all the time.
- Stronger and More Efficient Digestion – When you don’t have any food in your system to digest, digesting your food will be much easier and efficient, obviously.
- Elimination of Stored Toxins – Our body dumps much of the toxins we received from our food through urination and defecation. When you fast for some time, your whole system will have enough energy and time to focus on eliminating the already stored toxins.
- Decrease or Elimination of Headaches – I believe that it varies from person to person. I don’t understand the logic, how can not having any food leads to no or less headaches.
- Healthier teeth and gums – We all know that teeth and bone health is related. The healthier your bones are, the stronger your teeth and gums will be. You can’t get healthier bones or teeth from starving.
- A clean and healthy cardiovascular system – Yes, fasting for short-term (8-10 hours) can help your cardiovascular system. Overeating has been proven time and again to be fatal for your cardiovascular system. And if you fast for a short-term, it will definitely help your cardiovascular system.
- Dramatic reduction or complete elimination of aches and pains in muscles and joints – Again, fasting for short-term is helpful in this regard. Gourmandizing has also been known as one common factor among the people suffering with muscles and joints aches and pains.
So, all in all, we would consider fasting to be a good thing for short-term but this is not something you should do frequently for religious reasons or some other reasons. And remember, everything in excess is bad for you. Don’t binge-eat and you won’t ever need to fast.