Fasting for Wellness
This whole journey has taught me so much. I detail the mental and physical journey in this episode, and I announce my next small group fasting period. Save the date if you’re interested (week of March 12, 2017), and connect with me on Facebook so you get all of the updates!
And, PS, here’s the Bristol Stool Chart that I mention in the show. YOU’RE WELCOME! 🙂
- Listen to On Air with Ella episode 090 and episode 092 for all the background info on the January 2017 fast
- Get Jimmy Moore and Dr. Jason Fung’s book, The Complete Guide to Fasting
- Join the private Facebook page created for people interested in the small group fasting experience
- I am only sending email content to people who have asked for it. If that’s you, jump on my mailing list.
- Download Ella’s Personal Fasting Protocol: This chart shows what I consumed during my 3-day water fast (versus my standard intermittent fasting times).
What You Said:
The brave and lovely Fast Small Group members had SO MUCH INSIGHT. Here’s some of what they said…
Colette: I learned that you need set yourself up for success prior to attempting a fast, even an intermittent fast. Things like adequate sleep, good hydration, proper stress management, and having a clean diet are essential to having a good experience with fasting, in my opinion.
Penny: I would definitely do it again. I think in order for me personally to be successful I need to have the following lined up: 1. A clear goal – this time around I did not have a clear goal which kept me in that “waffling” state. 2. I need to do a better job of nourishing my body prior to doing this. While I try and eat clean – I’m far from perfect at it. I think it is really important to have your eating on point before trying fasting. As much as I thought I was prepared – in hindsight I could have done a better job.
Sam: I’ve found that fasting has started to come easier for me. I do need to play with the electrolyte intake to fine tune things (I didn’t do bone broth or Kombucha). My key takeaway is how much better I feel. I sleep better (and oddly less), function better, have more energy, and feel in peak state longer. I played with eating various foods afterwards and man, carbs were like being hit by a train.
Emma: “This is probably terrible, but I want to keep doing it for weight loss. Having a mental challenge has always excited me more than a physical challenge, so I think this might be my best path toward fat loss!” [Nothing worn with that, Emma! /Ella]
Diana: “I would definitely do another fast. I want to push myself even further because now I know I can do it. I want to continue to let go of my obsession with food and my need to overindulge. Even though I’m very active and I’m vegan, I still have quite a few bad food habits. Namely binging on “healthy” snack food (and also not-so-healthy snack food). I’ve realized that I default to eating when I’m stressed or bored or in need of comfort. My life revolves around food. This was an incredible learning experience, and I’m so, so, so proud of myself for taking a step in the right direction. I admit, I wasn’t going to listen to your podcast episodes about fasting because it scared the sh*t out of me and I didn’t think I could ever do it.”
Joan: “I would definitely do it again. First of all, getting through it gave me a tremendous amount of courage to know that I CAN do this. I won’t collapse of hunger if I go a little extra time without eating. Also after a recent trip to my cardiologist, I researched the heart benefits of fasting and found there are many. And I feel great about that.”
Camille: “One hundred percent integrating this as a quarterly practice. If there is any chance of this preventing disease in the future it is so worth it. I also love the mental resiliency it builds. It’s not that the fast itself was difficult. It was actually way more manageable than expected. Leading up to it though, I was totally psyched out. I liked feeling like I was doing something good for my body and it felt the opposite of restrictive which really surprised me. What you said on your livecast about setting a goal/making that commitment from the start was so accurate! Also, I love how productive I felt! I got SO much done. Yesterday felt like a slog of food prep, meals and dishes after three days of fasting.”
Jon: I would absolutely do it again, but I’d prepare a little differently next time. This time was basically a full on experiment for me so next time I’d know exactly how to prepare for the longer fast. I liked all of the benefits that came with the fast. Mental clarity, extra time, having a full on reset for my relationship with food, and the weight loss didn’t hurt. The reset of my food relationship was the big one. I almost feel like I’d like it to be a once per quarter thing. That way I’m never more than 90 days away from a reset of my obsession with food if I’m getting off track. I really love food and trying different foods and sometimes overindulging so this is a great reset point for me. The only catch is I don’t know if I could do a longer fast without the group support. The group support was invaluable.
Claire: My WHY was gut health and kick starting fat loss. I also wanted to be happier with experiencing hunger. I would try a longer fast (I did 3 days and want to try 5) because when I got to hr 72 and broke my fast, I actually felt as though physically I could’ve gone on longer. Mentally, I had reached my goal and wanted to eat. I wasn’t sure I would ever make it to day three so It’s given me huge confidence in myself! I had previously felt a fear of hunger but I’ve now faced that fear and it no longer exists! Thank you for setting up this group and for inspiring me! I can’t want to try again in the Spring.
Stacy: So glad I did this. I crave/love wine & cheese. My cravings for both so far are non existent. I have since moved to paleo/clean eating. I ended up not caring for the bone broth so I was all water and hot tea. Late on day 3 I felt pretty loopy & lost feeling in my left leg and foot like pins & needles. I took that as a sign I should probably add some healthy solids. I would not hesitate doing this again, however.
Genevieve: Thank you for allowing me to realize I don’t need to eat “all the time”!!! Since breaking my fast yesterday morning after 60 hours, I drank coffee with MCT oil in the morning, then I had a small lunch (bone broth and veggies yesterday and a salad today) and was satisfied trough the day… Even dinner was small yesterday, I had the same beet salad, that-is-it!!! So I am super proud of myself for finally realizing I am stronger than my cravings, than the fact that we “have” to eat every X hours, etc.!!! Thanks again, and thanks to this amazing group!!!
Ryden: Fasting with this group made this experience more of an adventure and fun. I feel amazing! My why for wanting to do this again is the same as my why for doing it this time. I’m taking control of my health and my life. I’m not willing to settle for feeling less than my best or living a mediocre life. If my doctor can’t find the answer for my health struggles, than I will. Daily intermittent fasting is now part of my lifestyle. Occasional extended fasting is a great new tool to have in my health toolbox. Thank you!
Kendall: First, I want to say thank you, Ella, for this support group and this opportunity to be part of it. I struggled with the fact that I quit before 24 hours. I did have a time of eating disorder habits, and I definitely thought I was past it, because of my 3 years of paleo diet that taught me I can control weight while eating a ton of really good food. I will continue with my lovely 16:8 intermittent fasting while on paleo diet but extended fasting and even the idea of it, immediately put me into the food mind game scenario that I thought I was past. Additionally, I am a huge crossfitter and supporting my training just doesn’t jive with extended fasting. My goal was to learn about myself and to kick a cycling cold I have had for months and I did succeed in my goals. I DID learn about myself and that continuing regular eating is key to where I have come in my life and relationship with food. I also kicked up my fermented food and kombucha during my non fasting time which DID kick my cold! Yay! Thank you!
Amy: [she did FIVE days!!/Ella] The biggest thing I learned was how often my mental drift leads me to eat, drink, or seek consumption of some kind. I thought it was quite amazing how feelings come and pass and how my body could operate just fine using itself as fuel. My insights and a-ha moments came in Days 1 through 3. Day 4 was a fine bonus. Throughout Day 5 I kinda just got bored with the process since I already had my takeaways – and I was ready to bring delicious and nutritious food back into my day.Throughout my fasting I didn’t experience any euphoria or extreme bouts of energy that were out of the ordinary. I felt pretty normal – and gained a new respect for my determination and mindset. My husband found it pretty impressive, too.
Put them in the comments, or find me on social media!
PS – don’t forget…if I don’t have your email, you won’t get the exclusive content from me. You can still lurk on the Facebook page and listen to the podcast episodes, though!
PPSS – I am not a doctor. I am not a health practitioner. I’m a self-experimenting lay-person sharing my experiences and NOT determining yours. OK? Please talk to your medical practitioner before engaging in any major changes in fitness, fasting or feeding.