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Thoughtful Thursday…My confession on fasting


Welcome to Thoughtful Thursday. This GreenNote Fitness newsletter mindfully gathers and distills useful information that is supportive to our journey. It is my mission to educate, inspire, and propel you into action that moves you towards your goals and life of purpose. Take control of your journey today.

I have a confession to make. I love fasting. Not eating for 12 hours, 16 hours, or 24 hours. I’ve read and written about the benefits of fasting and my exact routine for said fasts. A couple of weeks ago I wrote about a free documentary, The Real Skinny on Fat, that shows interviews with many doctors discussing the effects of our environment and the food we consume has on our microbiome. They discuss how they utilize fasting as a tool with their patients and how effectively this improves their health. Watching this multi-episode documentary and hearing these health experts has solidified my belief in the power of fasting and has strengthened my commitment to incorporating this as a lifestyle. Be sure to go back and read some my newsletters on fasting but in the meantime, let’s take a quick look at some benefits. Benefits of fasting:

  • Can significantly reduce the effects of aging on the brain

  • A powerful way to reduce inflammation, boost immunity, and enhance tissue healing

  • Anti-inflammatory effect on the entire body

  • Boosts Human Growth Hormone (HGH)

  • HGH is known to create physiological changes in metabolism to favor fat burning and protein sparing

  • Weight loss

  • Improved sleep

  • Reduced food, alcohol, and nicotine cravings

  • Increased energy

  • Increased mental clarity

For the past two weeks I’ve completed a full 24 hour fast each of those weeks. I’ve noticed a few things with these recent fasts; they are getting easier and my mental clarity and energy have noticeably increased. Why is this getting easier? I’ve worked up to the 24 hour fast by consistently fasting 16 hours per day, three times per week. Experts believe that fasting puts the brain cells under mild stress that is similar to the effect on exercise on muscle cells. The stress causes them to adapt and get more energy efficient. As for the mental clarity and energy boost; during fasting the brain is able to clean itself up, reduce clutter, and drive new neurons and communication lines for optimal function. Here is a good overview of different lengths of fasting that Dr. David Jockers uses:

  • Simple fast - 12 hours

  • Cycle fast - 16 hours 3x per week

  • Strong fast - 16 - 18 hours daily

  • Warrior fast - 19 - 21 hours daily

  • 1 day fast - Full 24 hour fast each week

Fasting is a way for the body to reset and rejuvenate. If you are thinking of reaping the benefits of fasting first consult your doctor if you have any conditions that would not be conducive to fasting. From there start with the Simple fast on a daily basis. So if you finished dinner at 7:00 PM, you wouldn’t eat anything until 7:00 AM the next day. Once you’ve got that dialed in for a while, then incorporate the Cycle fast. Do that for awhile and then consider a 1 day fast once per week. Here are some great resources on fasting, clients’ successes, and how to perform a fast:

There is much research out there on the benefits of fasting. Give one of the resource links above a try. Start with Dr. Jason Fung’s site. There is much information available for free there. The more I learn about the effects on the body and mind from fasting, the more I am compelled to incorporate it into my daily life. Knowing there is a time for feasting as well as fasting. The key is to incorporate both and let your body do what it knows how to do - repair itself. Do you incorporate fasting into your wellness took-kit? Leave a note in the comments section or go over and join the discussion on Facebook. Enjoy your journey, Lisa Schaffer GreenNote Fitness You wouldn’t happen to know just one person that would benefit from this information? Please forward it to them! Did you miss last week’s newsletter on The exercise for better brain function...and a better butt……? P.S. Check out my Facebook page for inspiration. P.P.S. Discover GreenNote Fitness recommendations for books, podcasts, and more on body, mind, and spirit.

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